The Jewel of the Baltic
Lithuania’s capital city, Vilnius is one of jewels of the Baltic but of all the Baltic cities it is perhaps the least known by UK tourists.
Expectations that Soviet style architecture will predominate should be dismissed; the city boasts many fine examples of the Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque and classical styles and the standards in its hotels is comparable with any western city.
The city is not overwhelmingly big but there is much to see. A good place to start is the main square which is dominated by the gleaming white cathedral and the hill on which stands the Gediminas Tower.
The tower can be reached by a convenient funicular and from the top a great panorama of the town can be seen with its quaint cobbled streets and ancient church spires.
Outside the city is the nearby town of Trakai, the country’s former capital with its beautiful lake which surrounds its impressive medieval castle. Further afield there is the fascinating spa town of Druskininkai. Thanks to the exertions of its indefatigable mayor, the spa resources and hotel accommodation have been developed to the highest standards.
Vilnius Opera House
The Lithuanian National Opera and Ballet perform to a very high standard and unlike many former communist opera houses which have steadily increased their ticket prices, those in Vilnius are still at bargain levels, as are the prices at the city’s hotels. The company presents works of the standard repertoire with a fairly traditional approach but they also present new operas and ballets by Lithuanian composers and choreographers.
On an Operas Abroad visit a wonderful production of Carmen was experienced with a wonderful passionate Carmen and very imaginative staging which included for some scenes removing all the backdrops to create a huge performing space reaching to the back wall of the theatre. This same production is in the programme for 2013-2014.
Another fine production is Halévy’s La Juive (see video below). This production has been in the companies repertoire for many years and it has been instrumental in reviving interest in this formerly neglected work.
The Packages include
Private airport transfers airport/hotel/airport
Three hotel nights with breakfast
A guided tour of Vilnius (approx. 2 hours 30 minutes the main sights are visited including Vilnius’ University)
A best category ticket for your choice of performance at the opera house.
For all the above at Hotel Narutis 5* £350 (single room supplement £40 per night)
For all the above at Hotel Amberton 4* £330 (single room supplement £30 per night)
One extra night at Hotel Narutis 5* £75 per person sharing, in a single room £85.
One extra night at Hotel Amberton 4* £45 per person sharing, in a single room £60.
Prices are subject to availability and variation at the time of booking.
Hotel Narutis *****
This is a small, intimate hotel, located in Vilnius’ Old Town. The Gediminas Tower, the Cathedral Area, the Grand Duke’s Palace and the Presidential Palace are all within 600 yards. Its facilities and services include non-smoking rooms, facilities for disabled guests, a lift, safety deposit box, air conditioning, 24 hour front desk, luggage storage, room service, laundry, dry cleaning, ironing service, gift shop, tour desk, two restaurants, bar, breakfast in the room, sauna, spa, wellness centre, massage, hot tub, library, Turkish bath, indoor pool and free WiFi in all areas.
Hotel Amberton ****
The hotel is just across the road from the cathedral and other sights which can are also within easy walking distance are the Grand Duke’s Palace, the Gediminas Tower, the National Museum, the Presidential Palace and Gediminas Avenue, the main shopping area. It has spacious rooms and the facilities include non-smoking rooms, facilities for disabled guests, lift, safety deposit box, allergy-free room, air-conditioning, 24 hour front desk, luggage storage, room service, laundry, dry cleaning, ironing service, gift shop, restaurant, bar and free WiFi in all areas.
LITHUANIAN NATIONAL OPERA AND BALLET 2015
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