Actor, Director, Writer, Musician, Scholar

“In my spare time I study the Italian Renaissance. Having learned from the best in Italy and the United States, through both my MA at Syracuse University at Florence and my PhD at UCLA, I can say that Rocky Ruggiero is the best among the very best. I have yet to encounter a more precise, informative and commanding teacher or conductor through the beauty and magnificence of Florence and Italy; and my friend Rocco is blessed with that additional rare trait of entertainment! He can speak to the child or the scholar in their own language such that all come away veritably thrilled with the drama and visual experience of art, architecture and the luxury of Italy. I have recommended everyone I know to seek him out; and I shall continue to do so. In fact I, myself, am always eager to see him again and essentially sit at his knee, as so many of do, to imbibe the new wonders he has gleaned from his first-hand research and experience – glossed with that unique and astute knowledge, delivered by the gifts of rapport with which he will now entertain and enlighten me.”



Vice Chairman, the Wonderful Company

“Several years ago, my family and I were traveling in Florence on an extended summer holiday. Our travel agent recommended Rocky Ruggiero as our art history professor to help us discover the mysteries of this Tuscan treasure trove. Although Florence has a thin veneer of modernity, just below the surface lies a fascinating history of artistic triumphs, wars and conflicts and intimate stories of the masterpieces of art, literature, and regal splendour unrivalled in the rest of Europe. We spent about four days under Rocky’s spell. There were 12 in our party ranging from 8-70. To a person we found Rocky to be the best artistic professor, in or out of a University experience. Our grandchildren were mesmerized; he made the palace intrigues, and architectural triumphs come alive with his spirited repartee. My husband and I collect old masters, so we know a fair amount about art. However Rocky showed us sites and more importantly gave us insights to things that were memorable and unique. He even knows the best restaurants and as we all know there are not necessarily the most expensive. First on my bucket list is to return to Florence to take one his weeklong seminars. Since that time I have recommended Rocky to other travellers and received profuse thank yous. Rocky is a star, and with him, you will experience the hidden Florence and see what life was truly like in that 14c city. Never has an art education been so enjoyable.”



Director, Producer Home Alone, Mrs. Doubtfire, Harry Potter films

“The beauty and sophistication of Renaissance Florence bring me back to that city again and again, and Rocky ‘s lectures bring the Renaissance to life. His ability to synthesize the extraordinary, and sometimes overwhelming, art and history into an understandable language reveal a true mastery of the subject. He can make the sublime concrete, and transform beauty into passion.”



Chairman, Salvatore Ferragamo USA

“The members of the Young President ‘s Organization, which is the group Rocky gave a lecture to, were very impressed with his in-depth knowledge of Italian design and history, as well as his infectious passion for Tuscan architecture and style. He was extremely informative, as well as entertaining, and our members were appreciative of the specific information relating to the area surrounding the property Castiglion del Bosco in Montalcino.”



Managing Member, Culbro LLC

“Rocky is absolutely one of the most articulate and knowledgeable experts on the History and Art of Florence and Tuscany. He also is a blast to be with for an afternoon or an extended course. He also knows food and wine and where to enjoy it.”



Professor Emeritus, Syracuse University
“Rocky Ruggiero is an outstanding alumnus of Syracuse University ‘s Graduate Art History program in Florence. He makes the Renaissance come alive.”



Chief Financial Officer and General Councel, Millbrook Capital Management Inc.

“My wife and I travelled to Italy many times and have had the chance to experience the cultural heritage Italy has to offer. Recently, we travelled to Florence with our twin daughters (age 6) and we wanted them to experience the rich art history of Florence in a more personalized basis. We were grateful that Rocky agreed to this assignment. His knowledge, love and enthusiasm for the arts was contagious It was the highlight of our trip!”



Professor of Neurological Surgery, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine

“In May 2009, I spent a week with my sister in Florence and Rome. During that time Rocky was our Art History instructor in both cities. My experience with him was spectacular. Of course his knowledge of Art and Architecture was incredibly deep. But the thing that made spending time with him so valuable was his ability to build a story that placed a building, painting or architectural feature in its historical context. Sometimes I felt that he was a composer, using a path through a museum to build to towards an artistic climax. I have hired other historians to lead me through their cities but none have been able to convey such rich narratives about a time and place.”