Ormina Tours donates luxury trip of a lifetime to couple with MS

Ormina Tours donates luxury trip of a lifetime to couple with MS – The dream of Tuscany, Italy, has long been just that for Russell and Donna Merriweather of Los Angeles, U.S.A., until they received a trip of a lifetime donated by bespoke travel group Ormina Tours that took them on a ten day journey, with private tours, around the country.

The LA couple recently underwent a living room makeover on America’s “Home Made Simple”, which focused on creating a Tuscany inspired, accessible, living room for wife Donna, who suffers from Multiple Sclerosis (MS). While the home improvement brought tears to both Russell and Donna’s eyes, it was not the end of the Italian dream just yet.

HomeMadeSimple Screenshot
The Merriweather Family on Home Made Simple

Believing that travel to Europe was off the table, due to his wife’s limited mobility caused by MS, Russell wanted to bring the dream of Tuscany to their home. But with the help of Home Made Simple and The Oprah Winfrey Show, Ormina Tours, a European tours company offering tailored luxury holidays, was able to reach out to the Merriweather couple and make their Tuscan travel dreams a reality.

Gifting the couple with a 10-day Italian tour, Ormina Tours endeavored to demonstrate that travel with mobility challenges is still achievable. The couple stayed in luxurious 4 and 5 star hotels, including Townhouse Galleria in Milan and Grand Hotel de la Minerve in Rome, and experienced privately guided tours around the main city attractions with guides who were able to help manage any mobility concerns.

italy-milan-townhouse galleria 10
Townhouse Galleria, Milan

“Travelling opens your eyes to so much, and that shouldn’t be hindered because of a disability”, says Client Relationship Director for Ormina Tours, Anna Jones. “Working with clients to ensure all their needs are met, whether it be accessibility issues, or any other specific travel needs, is what makes Ormina Tours so unique”.

Over the past 40 years Donna has continued to donate her time and effort to helping other people as a nurse, while her nervous system progressively deteriorates due to MS. While partner Russell has continued to support his wife, he had all but ‘given up’ on their dream of travelling to Europe.

“This really was the trip of a lifetime, one that we never thought would happen. To actually see, feel and take in the reality of what we saw and experienced was beyond our expectations. It has made me feel like I can do anything”, said Donna Merriweather.

Russell and Donna Merriweather, Florence, Italy

The ten-day journey included iconic cities in Italy such as Milan, Florence, Rome and of course, Tuscany, where the couple were able to enjoy the local sites and culture. Ormina Tours made sure that accessibility was a priority, organising walkers and scooters for the entirety of the trip.

View the full episode of Home Made Simple here.

Tags: ,