Embarking upon Sicily for the first time, we found a new word entering our vocabulary. Sicilying (n): the act of discovering Sicily in the same breadth of the local inhabitants.
The De Luxe Series spoke with Vincenzo Di Maria, the Marketing Manager at Sicilying.com, to find out how a guest to this region can adopt and replicate the lifestyle of the locals in order to appreciate its magnificent culture and picturesque nature to the fullest extent.
Vincenzo Di Maria achieved his first degree in Economics in 2006 and completed a Master’s in Marketing Management before spending four years working in Trade Marketing for a multinational corporation in Milan. While in Milan, Vincenzo decided to make use of his experience and passion for Sicily by setting up Sicilying in 2010 along with three other like-minded individuals. Each member of this deeply passionate team brought a unique experience and a true passion for their region.
Q. What inspired you to set up SICILYING.COM?
We founded Sicilying in 2010 to function as a main player in offering tourist services in Sicily. Sicilying’s strengths are our deep knowledge of the area, a genuine passion for Sicily, a consummately professional attitude and an emphasis on customer service. We don’t like to think of this as us “selling services” but rather “proposing experiences to live in Sicily” and to fully immerse our clients in Sicilian culture. With our company we aim to let our clients know of the leisure time offered by quality Sicilian Operators.
Q. How do your services differ from other travel organisations in the country?
We are not just any regular Tour Operator. We are the first to offer an online booking engine allowing clients to book services such as sports, wine tasting and nature tours in real time and are the only company in Sicily to offer this ser vice. What this means is that clients are able to book each service in a calendar system and are given online confirmation of their place being secured. Without this clients would have to contact the Tour Operator either by phone or email to see if the service is available. SICILYING.COM answers the question of “What to do in Sicily?” and we are not interested in providing anything other than a top quality experience. Our services are not necessarily the most expensive available but are without a doubt the most authentic.
Q. What can customers expect from your online services?
Our customer can always expect a professional standard of tourist services for the best available price on the market. Quality and customer satisfaction are the pillars that make us strong and reliable. We at Sicilying are happy to provide custom services for individuals with specific needs and passions. For some, trekking at Mt Etna might seem unlikely when it’s 8:00am and they’ve just landed in a port at Catania. With a return voyage scheduled for 6:00pm it might feel like there simply isn’t enough time. We at Sicilying commit ourselves to exceeding expectations and we can not only provide a service forour clients to trek the majestic volcano but also squeeze in a trip to a beautiful wine cellar all in time for their 6:00pm return!
Q. Does the website SICILYING.COM attract a specific type of traveller?
Our clients are individuals from all over the world seeking an authentic Sicilian experience among real sicilians. Typically we attract the more organised traveller who uses our website to gather relevant information about Sicily. Usually a Sicilying client will possess a high level of education and expect a great service we are always working to provide. We love curious clients, especially ones who want to truly understand Sicily and enjoy his or her holiday not only as a client or tourist but as an individual who develops a bond with real Sicilian people.
Q. How do you select which tour operators to work with?
We are always on the lookout for reliable tour operators and service suppliers who both love what they do and enjoy attending to our clients. Our goal is always to surpass customer expectations with both the activities we offer clients and our service. Tour operators who wish to work with us must be sensible and responsible with visitors and conduct themselves in a professional manner.
Q. Which tours are currently the most popular and why do you think this is?
One of our most popular services is our Quad Biking Adventure on Mt Etna. Starting from the beautiful Alcantara valley, visitors will partake in an off road adventure around the volcano and ride through both nature as well as different lava flows from years past. Once clients have explored to their heart’s content we offer relaxing wine tasting in a location situated along the track. We trust the enjoyment and more importantly the safety of our clients in this service to our trusted partners Alcantara Escursioni. To find out more visit our Quad Biking section of the Sicilying.com website, here.