Two-time Olympic medallist Alexander Zhulin has trained Olympic and European champion ice skaters from Russia, the U.S. and France, but who knows – his most promising student might be you. Four Seasons guests skip the line and clear the ice in Moscow’s Olympic Stadium for a one-on-one lesson. Zhulin can go over anything from step sequences and dance spins to lifts and even twizzles (that’s rink-speak for a multi-rotational one-foot turn). He’ll also crank up the music and show you some of his own award-winning moves.
Take It Up a Notch Make it a date for the ages: Come with a partner and learn to skate as a pair.
Four Seasons Hotel Moscow
Winding streets, iconic trolleys and azulejo-studded buildings make Lisbon one of Europe’s most photogenic destinations; it’s hard to walk a block without seeing a traveller capturing images for Instagram. But we’re willing to bet no one else will be riding in a vintage moto-car – a 1940s Ural 750 or 1970s Moto Guzzi 1000, among other options – alongside a professional photographer. Whether you’re a novice shutterbug or a practiced shooter, you’ll learn more about the technical nuts and bolts of your camera and how to capture portraits and landscapes, as well as get tips on working with movement and Lisbon’s unique light.
Take It Up a Notch If it’s not already on the itinerary, request a morning ride to Miradouro de Santa Luzia, an observation deck in Alfama. “Thanks to the city’s Seven Hills and the Tagus River, this place radiates light,” says General Manager Guilherme Costa of Four Seasons Hotel Ritz Lisbon.
Four Seasons Hotel Ritz Lisbon
Even Francophiles might not realize that Grand-Hôtel du Cap-Ferrat, A Four Seasons Hotel, is a stargazing paradise. Not only is the peninsula serene and romantic, it’s also removed from the sky-saturating lights of the French Riviera. During this dinner and tutorial, Dr Patrick Michel, a planetary scientist who specializes in asteroids and comets, is your guide to the sky. Upon a terrace or within the property’s 17-acre garden, Michel greets you with a telescope and Provençal aperitifs. Before and during an al fresco dinner, the sky is literally the limit when it comes to topics you might cover – think a constellation refresher or an in-depth discussion of Michel’s role in upcoming space missions to asteroids.
Take It Up a Notch Ask Michel to show you some of his unpublished space photos.
Grand-Hotel du Cap-Ferrat, A Four Seasons Hotel
This Florentine dining experience is so exclusive that Four Seasons Hotel Firenze’s Concierge can’t even divulge the name of the Renaissance palazzo where the evening takes place. We can, however, reveal that it’s a 15th-century residence designed by Medici confidant Giuliano da Sangallo. Like the nobles who own the property – and greet you at the front door – you’ll enjoy unparalleled city views from a balcony while sipping Champagne or a classic Italian negroni. In a room with elegant Renaissance-style furnishings and a panoramic window that frames the Duomo, the dinner table is adorned with artful flower arrangements, centuries-old crystal and bottles of wine from the owner’s Tuscan family estates. Dive into seasonal plates such as Cavatelli cacio e pepe and marinated scampi as the candles flicker.
Take It Up a Notch “Mimicking noble Renaissance family traditions, we can arrange hand-painted menus or even have Florentine flag-wavers welcoming you,” says Catering Manager Alessia Magni.
Four Seasons Hotel Firenze
Simone Zanoni, chef of Four Seasons Hotel George V, Paris, grew up eating produce from his family farm. “I picked my first tomato at the age of three,” he says. “So it was a huge shock when I took my team to the Kitchen Garden and realized that half of our cooks had never picked a zucchini before.” Through this experience, Zanoni extends the opportunity for guests to join him in the garden that provides ingredients for the Hotel’s Michelin-starred restaurant Le George. A Porsche Panamera Turbo S Hybrid transports chef and guests to the 1,800-metre garden in Domaine de Madame Élisabeth, located a stone’s throw from the Palace of Versailles. With Zanoni’s guidance, guests will select fruits, vegetables and herbs to take back to the kitchen at Le George, where he’ll teach the Italian cooking techniques he learned from his grandmother and transform the day’s harvest into an unforgettable meal.
Take It Up a Notch Have award-winning sommelier Gabriele del Carlo pair your meal with exceptional Italian wines personally chosen from the restaurant’s 15,000-bottle Italian collection.
Four Seasons Hotel George V, Paris
The mountain belongs to you for a night with a stay in the Four Seasons Hotel Megève’s Suite Idéal. This chalet-style mountaintop hideaway is perched in a secluded spot at 1,850 metres high. “It’s like a nest at altitude with unequalled comfort,” says Margaux Pfeiffer, Chief Concierge. Choose to arrive via chairlift and ski directly to the chalet or let a Polaris snowmobile be your transport. You’ll be greeted by 360-degree views of the Mont Blanc and Aravis mountain ranges. With the slopes at your doorstep, you’re guaranteed first tracks. At dawn, you can join the local ski patrol teams in activities such as skiing, snowcat rides and torchlit descents. After a day in the elements, relax in the chalet’s chromotherapy hammam shower while Chef Julien Gatillon of two-Michelin-starred restaurant Le 1920 prepares a meal sourced from the Rothschild family farms and vineyards. “The coquillettes pasta with ham and black truffle is a real return to childhood,” Gatillon says. “Like mountains, this dish is a mixture of sincerity and refinement, bringing the comfort which is so appreciated during a stay at altitude.”
Take It Up a Notch Chase perfect powder on a helicopter ski safari.
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