Institute of Classical Architecture & Art



Travel Programs

Classical Atlanta, Past and Present (sold out)

April 20 - 23, 2017

Tour arranged by Classical Excursions


Atlanta’s classical tradition is a rich architectural heritage that since the early years of the 20th century has never ceased to thrive. Philip Trammell Shutze (Atlanta’s most revered), J. Neel Reid, Lewis Edmund Crook, Jr., James Means, Norman Davenport Askins, Stan Dixon, William Harrison and Young Pak, are just some of the names that come to mind in the pantheon of the southern city’s classical architects, past and present. The work of such interior designers as Jackye Lanham, Tammy Connor, Judy Bentley, Bunny Williams and Brian McCarthy have created with great integrity interiors that secure the classical tradition for today’s living styles.

The Institute of Classical Architecture & Art is pleased to announce an extended weekend tour of some of Atlanta’s best classical architecture, past and present. Thanks to ICAA travel committee members Barry Hutner and Stan Dixon, as well as others, the highest standards have been maintained in the selection of private homes for the tour. Among these are Eagle House by J. Neel Reid, inspired by Tintinhull House in Somerset, England, a Regency-style house also by J. Neel Reid, Olsen House by Stan Dixon, Nawench owned by Jackye Lanham and Mori House, Swan House and the May Patterson Goodrum House, all by Philip Shutze. These are just a few of the tour sites.

An opening dinner at the exclusive Piedmont Driving Club with a lecture by renowned architectural historian Elizabeth Dowling, a dinner in a splendid private home and a cocktail reception at another are just a few of the highlights for the tour. Overnight accommodations have been reserved at the Ritz Carlton, Buckhead.

For further information contact Tom Hayes, or 413-243-4155.

Image Credit: Flickr / Jim Bowen

The Rich Art & Architectural Heritage of Andalusia, Spain

May 14 - 21, 2017

Tour arrangements by Classical Excursions

Andalusia, Spain is known as “the bridge between two continents,” Africa and Europe, as well as “the gateway to Europe”. The Andalusian region has been coveted by many cultures since the earliest period of mankind, and it is one of the areas of settlement of our prehistoric ancestors. The diversity of the landscapes, which form the Andalusia region, provide an entire regional spectrum. It is this variety of environments that create a superb mix of visual and cultural experiences within a unique range of monumental cities to traditional towns. Andalusia has been a continual source of inspiration for architects, artists, composers and writers.

With that in mind, the Institute of Classical Architecture & Art is inviting you to join art and architectural historian Dr. Johan Cederlund, director of the Anders Zorn Museum, on an exclusive tour of the finest areas and sites that behold this extraordinary region of southern Spain. Dr. Cederlund is a veteran tour leader and lecturer, as well as an author of books on art and architecture and curator of international art exhibitions viewed in Spain, Sweden, New York and California.

Dr. Cederlund will start his private tour in Malaga, located on the glamorous Costa del Sol and home to centuries of civilizations: Phoenicians, Carthaginians, Romans, Moors and Iberians. Modern Malaga is a cultural center offering a wide array of first-rate art museums and superb cuisine. Among other sites featured on the itinerary are private visits to two art museums. Museo Picasso, which is housed in a 16th-century palazzo called El Palacio de Buenovista. The second, Museum Carmen Thyssen, a splendid private collection affiliated with the aristocratic Thyssen- Bornemisza family of Madrid and focusing on 19th century Spanish paintings.

In Malaga, we will visit the historic town center including the Plaza de la Constitucion, the cathedral, Picasso’s childhood home and the Roman theater. We will also see the intriguing 11th century Moorish fortification Alcazaba.

For anyone visiting Andalusia, a stop at Granada is a must. The Alhambra palace is considered one of the finest examples of Islamic architecture in Spain. It attracts more visitors than any other historic monument in Europe. Our tour includes a private visit to this exceptional and singularly unique building in the world.

Other highlights in Granada include a private visit to the Carmen Los Cipreses, one of the more important buildings in the historic Albayzin Moorish quarter of Granada facing Alhambra, as well as an evening visit to the privately owned Palacio Nasrid in Granada, including some Spanish wine with the owners.

During the tour, participants will also visit Cordoba and its famed Moorish mosque La Mezquita de Cordoba, which was completed in the year 900 and became an important prototype for future Moorish architecture. Cordoba became a world-class metropolitan city with a population of more than 100,000. While in Cordoba, we will also stop at the Royal Palace Alcázar de los Reyes Cristianos for an exclusive tour of the palace and the gardens.

We continue on to Andalusia’s capital city of Seville, known architecturally as a transitional city between Moorish and Spanish Spain. Here we will visit the art museum, Museo de Bellas Artes de Sevilla, housed in a 16th century fort, originally a cloister. The museum features paintings from the golden age of Spanish art, works by such world-renowned artists Murillo and Zurbaran. While in Seville we also visit the royal palace Real Alcázar, originally built by Moorish Muslim kings and known to be the most beautiful palace in Spain. It is considered one of the best examples of mudejar architecture found on the Iberian Peninsula. The upper levels of the palace are still used as the Seville official residence of the royal family and is a Unesco World Heritage site. Additionally we will visit the famous cathedral clock tower called La Giralda. In Seville participants also visit the Casa de las Dueñas which is the official residence of the Dukes of Alba in the city, and was the favored residence of Cayetana, 18th Duchess of Alba. She spent much time here during her life, and said that she felt most at home in Seville. More recently, Cayetana married her third husband, Alfonso Diaz, at the palace chapel in 2011. Three years later she passed away in the palace, surrounded by Alfonso and her six children, aged 88. Her eldest son, Carlos Fitz-James Stuart y Martinez de Irujo, inherited the title Duke of Alba.

Another palace that we will visit on the tour is the Countess of Lebrija’s home in Seville, Palacio Lebrija, where we will have a VIP visit, including a glass of wine. The Palacio Lebrija is known to be the best-paved house in the world with over 500 square meters of Roman Mosaic flooring. The countess was an archaeology enthusiast and therefore incorporated many original Roman finds into the house.

Casa De Salinas is a fine example of a classical XVI century Andalusian courtyard house inspired by Greek and Roman architecture with Moorish details interspersed throughout. The owners of this privately owned palace will greet us with a welcome drink to make our private visit extra special.

The tour will also feature a visit to the XV century privately owned Bailen Palace with the owners in the heart of historic Seville; an evening visit to the private home of the Consul General of Italy in Seville; and a special farewell dinner on the roof top terrace of a private home in Seville with spectacular views of the most significant monuments in the city.

Another beautiful city not to be missed is Cadiz, known as Europe’s oldest city, founded by the Phoenicians more than 3000 years ago. In Cadiz, we will explore the historic city center with its charming narrow passageways and cobblestone streets.

Our accommodations include a four-night stay at the renowned five-star Hotel Alfonso XIII in the heart of historic Seville, a two-night stay at the Vincci Selección Posada del Patio in Malaga, and the Alhambra Palace Hotel in Granada.

For further details, please contact or 413-446-8728.

The tour price is $4500 per person, based on double occupancy. A single supplement of $1,200 per person applies. Please note a fully tax-deductible donation of $500 per person is required to participate in this Travel Program. Make your contribution online now, or call 212.730.9646 ×106.

Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons/José Luiz Bernardes Ribeiro; Wikimedia Commons/Cat

Private Paris & Beyond: Exemplary Private Sites, Residences, Chateaux & Gardens

June 9 - 17, 2017

Tour arranged by Arranged by Pamela Huntington Darling, Consultant, Exclusive Cultural Travel Programs

The Institute of Classical Architecture & Art is delighted to announce this unparalleled program to Paris. Guests will experience behind the scenes access to some of the city’s most fascinating architectural treasures.
Tour Highlights:

-Private Behind-the-Scenes Full-day Visit to the Château de Versailles, the day it is closed to the public. We will visit Marie-Antoinette’s estate, including the Petit Trianon, and rooms not open to the public: the Théâtre de la Reine, the Pavillon Français, and the Chapelle de la Reine.

-Private Day trip & Lunch at Jacques Garcia’s historic Château du Champ de Bataille, near Paris: Château du Champ de Bataille is one of the finest 17th century estates in France and houses an exceptional collection of art. We will also enjoy a private visit of the splendidly restored French gardens inspired by Le Nôtre.

-Private reception at Hôtel de La Rochefoucauld-Doudeauville, the magnificent private residence of the Italian Ambassador to France. With its exquisite French Regency décor and the 18th-century Théatre Sicilien, transported from the Palais Butera de Palerme in Sicily, and an enchanting garden, the Hôtel is classified a French Historic Monument.

-Recital with celebrated pianist Jay Gottlieb & Dinner Reception at a Private Residence located in a beautiful 17th century hôtel particulier, housing handsome décor and impressive works of art, 16th century to Contemporary. Our hostess is a prominent member of the art world, author, specialist in Frida Kahlo and Marc Chagall, and organizer of noteworthy art exhibits.

Our expert lecturer:
Pierre-Jean Cornuat, is an expert of French history and art, and has been conducting visits for over 30 years in France, including Paris and its surroundings, the Loire Valley, Normandy, Champagne, Burgundy, Alsace, and other regions. Pierre-Jean Cornuat studied French history and Art history at the renowned Ecole du Louvre.

Guests will stay at the new 4-star luxury hotel & spa Le Saint, 5 rue du Pré aux Clercs, 75007 Paris, in the elegant Saint-Germain-des-Près.
Their Superior rooms are beautifully furnished, with marble bathrooms, gracious service, and a fabulous

Tour Price:
$8,750 per person double occupancy;
$9,750 single occupancy;
+ a fully tax-deductible $500 contribution to the Institute’s Annual Fund

Tour Price Includes:
8 days of private visits and receptions;
8 nights accommodation in 4-star luxury hotel;
8 breakfasts;
5 lunches;
5 dinners;
transportation to and from all events in a private coach; all private visits and expert lecturers.

This unique, behind-the-scenes travel program, with exceptional access, will be limited to 20 participants. The Tour Price is based on 18 confirmed participants.

For more information and to assure availability of this significant tour: Please email Pamela Huntington Darling or call (Paris, France) Tel. +33 1 45 67 62 81. Website: Confirmed participants will receive a full itinerary of this exceptional tour.

Please note a fully tax-deductible donation of $500 per person is required to participate in this Travel Program.

Photo Credits: Audrey Chtchepine

Private Bar Harbor

August 24 - 27, 2017

Tour arranged by Classical Excursions

Bar Harbor has long been a destination for inspiration, relaxation and outdoor activities. Hudson Valley School painters, most notably Thomas Cole and Frederic Church, travelled to Mount Desert Island and to Bar Harbor in particular to paint images of the area’s spectacular seascapes and landscapes.

After the Civil War, great hotels were built for vacationers, but ultimately the “cottages,” rambling shingle style mansions built by America’s rich and famous, took over the landscape. Today, many of the cottages are still in private hands while others offer overnight accommodations. The Institute of Classical Architecture & Art is pleased to inform you that a tour is being arranged by an architect whose family has for generations owned some of these cottages.

For further information contact Tom Hayes, or 413-243-4155.

Image Credit: Sargent C. Gardiner

New 20th and 21st Century Classicism in England

September 28 - October 5, 2017

Tour arranged by Classical Excursions

English architects Quinlan and Francis Terry, John Simpson, Robert Adam (who won an Arthur Ross Award), George Saumarez Smith, Francis Johnson, Raymond Erith, Marshall Sisson, Craig Hamilton and others conjure up the fact that 20th and 21st century classical architecture has been alive, influential and not to be outdone by the modernists. Focusing on the counties south of London, as well as Cambridge, the Institute of Classical Architecture & Art is pleased to inform you that Clive Aslet, renowned architectural historian, former editor-in-chief and now editor-at-large of Country Life magazine, will lead a tour of some of the country’s finest new classical architecture.

For further information, contact Tom Hayes,, 413-243-4155.

Image Credit: Quinlan and Francis Terry Architects.

Genoa, Turin & Milan: Exceptional Private Estates, Gardens & Historic Sites with optional extension

October 14-21, 2017

Tour arranged by Exclusive Cultural Tours

Optional Extension: The Lakes – Saturday, October 21st to Wednesday, October 25th (departure): 4 days / 4 nights

The Institute of Classical Architecture & Art is pleased to offer this exceptional tour, during which we will be received by members of the Italian cultural elite for exclusive visits of historic, emblematic estates, offering a rarer opportunity to savor unique architecture, decor, art collections and gardens.

Highlights of the tour include:

  • Private visit to the gardens of the Agnelli family residence, Villar Perosa, one of Italy’s most splendid examples of garden design, with Paolo Pejrone, student of Russell Page and among Italy’s leading garden designers

  • Private visit to the Castello Mackenzie, a historical manor offering a perfect example of Gothic Revival architecture. Built between 1893 – 1905, it was designed by Gino Coppedè, renowned Art Nouveau architect

  • Exclusive visit to Cenacolo Vinciano to view The Last Supper, painted by Leonardo da Vinci

  • Private visit to the Villa Silvio Pellico, a magnificent 18th Century villa with an extraordinary garden designed by Russell Page. No other classical garden in Europe by Page better illustrates his extraordinary ability to interpret the nature of a site than the Villa Silvio Pellico

  • Exclusive visit to the artist studio of a world-renowned master of the Arte Povera movement, Giuseppe Penone. Spread over numerous floors in an ancient industrial building, Giuseppe Penone’s studio displays many of his remarkable sculptures

  • Lunch at the private residence of Donna Patrizia Sandretto Re Rebaudengo and visit to the Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo, Turin’s most recognized venue of contemporary art

  • Private visit to the Villa Litta-Borromeo-Visconti Lainate, offering an exceptional variety of mosaics, statues, frescoes and fountains

  • Truffle discovery and tasting at a private estate, during the Alba White Truffle Festival

  • Private visit to the Villa Cicogna Mozzoni on Lake Maggiore, one of the most elaborate gardens of northern Italy displaying unique Renaissance frescoes

For more information and to register: Please email Pamela Huntington Darling:; or call (Paris, France) Tel. +33 1 45 67 62 81. Website:

Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons/Paolobon 140

Private Philadelphia Main Line

October 19-22, 2017

Tour arranged by Classical Excursions

What exactly is the Philadelphia Main Line? Yes, it’s the setting for the 1940 film classic The Philadelphia Story. The term actually refers to the historic area northwest of the city that connects via the former Pennsylvania Railroad Main Line and a parallel route of such known suburban communities as Wynnewood, Ardmore, Haverford, Bryn Mawr and Villanova, with nearly twenty altogether. Starting in the 19th century, the convenience of the rail line led to the development of many country estates built by some of Philadelphia’s wealthiest families who had one home in town and another in the picturesque countryside of the Main Line region.

In the 20th century, many of these families moved to the Main Line suburbs. Part of the national trend of suburbanization, this instigated rapid investment, prosperity and growth that transformed the area into greater Philadelphia’s most affluent and fashionable region.

Participants of the Private Philadelphia Main Line tour sponsored by the Institute of Classical Architecture & Art will have the privilege of visiting some of the area’s finest homes designed by top architects and interior designers.

For further information, contact Tom Hayes,, 413-445-7972.

Image Credit: Ryan Richards for Main Line Media News

Japan: Architectural, Decorative Arts & Garden Treasures

November 10 -19, 2017

Tour arranged by Arranged by Pamela Huntington Darling, Consultant, Exclusive Cultural Travel Programs

The Institute of Classical Architecture & Art (ICAA) is pleased to announce an exclusive tour of the treasures of Japan, during which participants will be received by members of the Japanese cultural elite for exclusive visits of historic estates, offering a rare opportunity to savor unique architecture, art collections, and gardens in Kyoto, Nara, Naoshima Island, Nikko, and Tokyo.

Highlights of this tour include:


  • Walking tour with an expert of Japanese wooden architecture in the old Gion district to explore traditional architecture of tea houses, restaurants, and geisha houses

  • Private visit to the Katsura Imperial Villa and Gardens, one of Japan’s most important large-scale cultural treasures. The villa and garden in their present forms were completed in 1645 as the residence for the Katsura Family, members of Japan’s Imperial Family

  • Curator-led visit to the Kyoto National Museum, one of Japan’s oldest and most distinguished museums, hosting a wide variety of Japanese archaeological relics, sculptures, ceramics, calligraphy, costumes, and paintings
  • Curator-led visit to the Miho Museum, designed by renowned architect I.M. Pei, located in the Shiga mountains outside Kyoto. The Museum houses Mihoko Koyama’s private collection of Asian and Western antiques. Highlights of the collections have been featured in traveling exhibitions at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and the Metropolitan Museum of Art in 1996

  • Exclusive Tea Ceremony inside the Sagawa Museum, an architecturally unique museum where the tea room is constructed under the water garden to resemble a floating isle. You will admire raku bowls, masterpieces crafted by the ceramic artist Raku Kichizaemon, 15th generation member of the Raku family. For 450 years, successive generations of the Raku family have passed down the raku technique and tradition without any modification

  • Visit to the Sanjusangendo Temple, built in 1164, known for its Hall of Thirty-Three Bays, Japan’s longest wooden structure, housing 1,001 large wooden statues of Kannon, the Goddess of Mercy

  • Visit to the emblematic complex of Nara, former capital of Japan from 710 to 794, where eight temples, shrines, and ruins remain and collectively form “Historic Monuments of Ancient Nara,” a UNESCO World Heritage Site, accompanied by an architectural historian. Discover en-route the Great Buddha at the Todai-ji Temple complex

Teshima Island & Naoshima Island:

  • Accompanied by a curator, we will visit the Teshima Art Museum, housing one of the most intriguing contemporary installations in Japan, uniting the creative visions of artist Rei Naito and architect Ryue Nishizawa. The museum stands on a hill, overlooking the Seto Inland Sea; in this setting, nature, art and architecture come together in limitless harmony

  • Visit to Naoshima Island, Japan’s major destination for avant-garde art and architecture with unique buildings designed by architect Tadao Ando and outdoor artworks by world-renowned artists such as Yayoi Kusama, Hiroshi Sugimoto, Niki de Saint Phalle, Dan Graham, and Michaelangelo Pistoletto

  • Curator-led visit to the Chichu Art Museum, where we will admire works by Claude Monet, Walter De Maria, and James Turrell. We will also visit the Lee Ufan Museum

  • Behind-the-scenes visit to the magnificent Kotohira-gu shrine, hosting some of the finest 17th century painted panels. We will visit rooms that are not opened to the public, displaying delicate screen paintings and decorated door panels by celebrated Japanese artists

Tokyo & Nikko:

  • Lunch at the Park Hyatt Tokyo’s New York Grill to savor the best wagyu (Kobe beef) in Tokyo and admire a stunning view of the city

  • Tour by private luxury coach to admire the architectural treasures of Tokyo, designed by world-renowned architects such as Le Corbusier, Frank Lloyd Wright, Tange Kenzo, and Tadao Ando

  • Dinner at the residence of the French Ambassador to Japan

  • Visit to the Meiji Shrine complex, dedicated to the deified spirits of Emperor Meiji and his wife Empress Shoken. Surrounded by a large forested area, the main shrine buildings offer a peaceful atmosphere contrasting with the densely built-up and bustling city of Tokyo

  • Dinner at the members-only Tokyo American Club, an extravagant and magnificent contemporary complex, designed by the acclaimed American architectural firm Pelli Clarke Pelli, where we will be welcome by prominent members

  • Stroll in Ueno Park, followed by a curator-led visit to the Nezu Museum, founded in 1941 to conserve and exhibit the collection of pre-modern Japanese and East Asian art that Nezu Kaichir (1860-1940) had passionately built

  • Visit to one of the last traditional kimono makers, Yasutaka Komiya, designated as a “holder of important intangible cultural property” and as an “honorary citizen of Tokyo,” using old dyeing techniques, hand paintings and gold embroidery

  • Day trip to Nikko, a stunning concentrated consortium of Japan’s spectacular temples, with gorgeous mountain scenery, waterfalls, huge ponderosa pines, cedars, and fall foliage

  • Visit to Ryuzu Waterfall and Lake Chuzenji, as well as the elegant Italian Embassy Villa, a former summer residence of the Italian Ambassador to Japan, located on the southeastern shore of Lake Chuzenji

  • Farewell dinner at the private residence of a distinguished art collector

Participants will enjoy five-star accommodations at the Hyatt Regency Kyoto, Benesse House on Naoshima Island, and the Capitol Hotel Tokyo.

For more information and to register: Please email Pamela Huntington Darling:; or call (Paris, France) Tel. +33 1 45 67 62 81. Website:

The tour price is $10,995 per person double occupancy; $12,990 single occupancy. Please note a fully tax-deductible donation of $500 per person is required to participate in this Travel Program.

Private Palm Beach

November 30 - December 3, 2017

Tour arranged by Classical Excursions

We have wealthy industrialist Henry Flagler to thank for founding the town of Palm Beach, Florida. Attracted by the area’s warm, balmy weather and tropical environment, Flagler, whose own estate Whitehall, designed by Carrère and Hastings in 1902 and is still visited by the public, helped establish Palm Beach as a premiere locale for the winter social season. It soon became a resort town with lavish hotels and opulent residences designed by such architects as Addison Mizner, Maurice Fatio, Howard Major and Clarence Mack.

Over 100 years of graceful evolution that has never faltered, Palm Beach is world-renowned for its extraordinary beauty and quality of life. The Institute of Classical Architecture & Art invites you to join this Private Palm Beach tour of some of the city’s most significant homes and interiors.

For further information, contact Tom Hayes,, 413-445-7972.

Image Credit: Flickr / Ray_LAC