Blazor Master Class
w/ Carl Franklin
Castello di Magona
September 16 - 23, 2023
Spend a week in a luxurious Tuscan castle.
Each morning, learn Blazor with world-renowned expert Carl Franklin. In the afternoons and evenings, explore the best Tuscany has to offer with hosts Larry Lustig, Marco Chelo and local guides, and enjoy the 16th century Castello di Magona, once home to the Dukes of Tuscany.
Bring a companion! There are extra morning activities for them if they're not interested in the course.
Blazor is an exciting Microsoft technology that allows web applications to be written in one language including server-side and client-side interactive code. No one has more experience training people in Blazor than Carl Franklin.
Blazor Master Class is intended for experienced programmers who have little experience with Blazor or who are moderately familiar with Blazor but want to take their knowledge to the next level. The course, which is taught in C#, will take you from Blazor's component architecture (the heart of its power) to the various hosting models (server-side, WebAssembly, and the upcoming hybrid model), to deployment. Along the way, we'll develop and deploy a real-world Blazor application.
For this you'll need the following:
* A working knowledge of C#
* A laptop computer with the latest version of Visual Studio Community Edition (or better) installed
Blazor Server vs WebAssembly
WebAssembly Under the Hood
Anatomy of a Blazor Project
Configuration & Dependency Injection
Layout, Routing, and Navigation
Blazor Component Lifecycle
Binding and Event Handling
Building and Sharing Components
Routing ASPX requests to Blazor Pages
Data Access using Repository Pattern
Syncing CRUD Operations with SignalR
gRPC vs API
Handling App Updates
The Castello di Magona is located in the Tuscany region of Italy in the town of Campiglia Marittima, which originates in the middle ages on the remains of earlier Etruscan and Roman infrastructure. The town has a variety of museums featuring local history and religious art, as well as a Roman mausoleum.
The nearby Mediterranean seacoast, sometimes referred to as the "Etruscan Riviera," offers a variety of beaches, both the classic Italian scene of umbrella-covered sand backed by beachfront restaurants, as well as "wild" beaches backed by dunes and vegetation. The beaches here tend towards sand, rather than the pebble or rocks-slab beaches elsewhere in Italy.
A short drive brings us to the classic heart of Tuscany, with rolling vineyard-covered hills of Chianti and the medieval hill-top towns of San Gimigniano and Volterra. Within 90 minutes we can reach the historic and stunningly beautiful walled cities of Siena, Lucca, and Grosseto, and a little further afield, Florence.
The Castello di Magona (sometimes called Castello Leopoldo) has its origins in the 16th century on the foundations of an even older palace. It was for many years a residence of the Grand Dukes of Tuscany, culminating in the final Duke, Leopoldo II, who abdicated in 1859.
The castle was renovated starting in 1900 under the auspices of the Italian Institute of Fine Arts. Today it is a grand residence decorated throughout with coffered and painted ceilings, frescoes, antique furniture, and art. There are extensive public rooms including three sitting rooms and a bar.
The castle sits in private grounds including parking, a Rose Garden, terraces, a swimming pool, and a jacuzzi. The entire complex will be for our exclusive use for the week.
Rooms & Prices
Prices are per person and depend on the room selected. Course participants and companions are charged at the same rate. Everyone who attends is entitled, but not required, to take the course. We do expect that at least one person in each room is there for the course. During class, companions are free to enjoy the castle facilities or to participate in additional activities arranged for them.
Some rooms can be made up with one large bed or two twin beds (as is common in Europe). If you are a single course participant and looking to split the cost of a room, contact us and we'll put you in touch with anyone else who has a similar interest.
Room Name (>> Scroll)
Grand Duke's Room (1)
King or 2 Twins
King or 2 Twins
King or 2 Twins
Private (tub with view)
Tower Room 7
King or 2 Twins
Murano Room (9)
King or 2 Twins
Tower Room 11
King or 2 Twins
Private (Shower Only)
King or 2 Twins
Private (Shower Only)
King or 2 Twins
Please note the following
All rooms have air conditioning, television, and internet.
All rooms except the rooms in the apartment have private bathrooms. Most rooms have a tub / shower combination but several have only a shower, as noted.
Those rooms marked as "Double or 2 Singles" have two twin beds combined into a double bed, which can also be separated.
Where triple occupancy is available, the third bed is a roll-away.
The windows do not have screens.
The apartment is a separate apartment in the castle complex with one shared bathroom and less elegant decoration.
Food & Drink
Both food and drink are treated with a great deal of respect by Italians, and we'll be doing the same during our week in Tuscany. Breakfast at the castle is included every day. Lunch is included most days, and four of the dinners are also included. Drinks, including alcohol, are also included. We make every effort to cater to special diets.
Breakfast is served by the castle staff and can be enjoyed indoors or in the Rose Garden. Breakfasts in Italy tend to be heavy on pastries but there will also be meats, cheeses, and eggs available.
Lunches will be available at the castle in the form of a cold buffet of breads, meats, cheeses, vegetables, and fruits. When away from the castle, lunch may be part of a visit to a local food producer, or may be at a seaside pizzeria or local osteria.
Two of our dinners, on days 2 and 7, will be catered affairs at the castle. These will be served in the Rose Garden, weather permitting, or in the castle's dining room. We'll set the menus for these dinners once we know the preferences of all the attendees.
Other included dinners will be in well-respected local restaurants. For those dinners not included, we're happy to advise you on the local restaurant scene and help with reservations. Please note that most true restaurants in Italy require reservations and don't open for dinner until 8pm.
It's no secret that Italians in general, and Tuscans in particular, are a wine-drinking people. A selection of local wines will be available at the castle. Included meals also include house wines with lunch and dinner.
In addition, Italy has a rich culture of pre-dinner drinks (aperitivi) and post-dinner digestivi. We'll stock the castle with a variety Italian amari (bitters) and other items for those who want to educate themselves about this aspect of Italian dining.
For a country so identified with pasta there is a great deal of awareness about gluten-free diets in Italy. The good news is that Italy has a long gastronomic history of using non-wheat flours (such as chick pea and chestnut flours) for both sweet and savory dishes.
Pescatarian, Vegetarian, and Vegan
Experienced Italian eaters know that one secret of Italian food is that the meat is often not the star of the meal. Pescatarians and vegetarians will have no problem at all eating during our week in Italy. If you're vegan, you'll have a slightly harder time of it (but you already knew that, didn't you) but you'll still find plenty of delicious pasta and vegetable dishes.
Low Carb & Keto
Both Carl and Larry follow low carbohydrate diets. The pizza and pasta isn't an option for us. The local cuisine, however, is also rich in salumi (preserved meats) and cheeses. We're near the coast and will have a steady supply of fish and seafood. Also, Tuscan beef is famous around the world.
Breakfast is daily from 8:00 to 9:00 am. For those taking the course, classes will run from approximately 9:00 am to 1:00 pm each day. For those not taking the course, activities generally start around 10 am. The rest of the group will join us later in the day.
Please note that our precise itinerary is still under construction, and some of the days may change depending on research this summer.
Even after we formalize the itinerary we may still make last minute changes to account for weather or special opportunities.
Day 1 - Saturday, Sept 16th
Arrival day for the week. Come to the castle any time after 4pm. In the evening, we'll have a cocktail hour featuring an introduction and tour of the castle. Afterward, we'll head into Campiglia Marittima for dinner in a local restaurant (included).
Day 2 - Sunday, Sept 17th
First day of class! Those not taking the course can enjoy the castle or make an early start for the coast.
In the afternoon, everyone will meet for lunch (included) by the coast, followed by visits to the nearby Etruscan ruins of Populonia and a Roman mausoleum. If we have time, we may take in the mine train at the nearby San Silvestro Archaeological Park.
In the evening, back at the castle we'll enjoy cocktails, followed by our grand welcome dinner catered by a local chef in the castle gardens (or in the banquet hall, depending on the weather).
Day 3 - Monday, Sept 18th
While class is in session the advance team will set out to make a couple of stops on the way to Siena.
In the afternoon, everyone will meet up in Siena and spend the rest of the day touring the city with our guide, a local Sienese. We'll hit all aspects of the city -- its history, its panoply of patron saints, the annual Palio, its gastronomy (including local sweets), and what it's like as a modern day native and resident of this amazing city.
After we've thoroughly toured the city, we'll break up for strolling and shopping before dinner (not included) and the late-night drive back to the castle.
Day 4 - Tuesday, Sept 19th
Today we'll explore a little known aspect of Tuscan geography and history: the geothermal activity that has produced a mini-Yellowstone in the hillls inland from the castle, as well as numerous spas and thermal baths in the area dating back to the Romans and before.
After a trip up to the hills for a visit to Lagoni del Sasso, those who are interested can do the hike through the "Devil's Valley" to Massa Marritima. In the afternoon it's back down to Venturina Terme to spend the afternoon at the "Estruscan Spa" (admission to the indoor and outdoor pools included; any treatments are extra).
Day 5 - Wednesday, Sept 20th
Today is dedicated to a wine and food tour of the Maremma. Our advance team will head off to stock up on pastries at a local bakery. Once we're joined by the course participants, we'll visit a winery making local DOC (Denominazione di Origine Controllata) wines from local varietals, visiting the vineyards and tasing the wines, and also local sources of cheese and olive oil. On our scouting trip to the area we even spotted a local producer of saffron.
Day 6 - Thursday, Sept 21st
At one time, the Via Francigena was better-known and more traveled than the Camino de Santiago. Connecting Canterbury, England with Rome, it's still a major pilgrimage route cutting right through the heart of Tuscany.
On Thursday, we'll walk one of the shorter stages with a local hiking guide. After the walk, we'll take in a couple of Tuscany's iconic hilltop towns (or you can choose to skip the walk and spend the whole day touring the countryside), ending up in San Gimignano for dinner (this dinner is not included).
Day 7 - Friday, Sept 22nd
On Friday, we'll dive headlong into the Maremma and visit some places that aren't normally on the tourist trail, including the Etruscan necropolis at Vetolunia, the view from Buriano, and the village and beach town of Castiglione della Pescaia.
In the evening, it's back to the castle for a grand farewell dinner.
Day 8 - Saturday, Sept 23rd
Our week of magical living is finished. After one last breakfast together, it's time to pack up and head home, or onwards to our next adventure.
Inclusions & Payment
Included in the Price
Accommodation as selected during booking, including one mid-week housekeeping.
Full use of the castle's pool, jacuzzi and other facilities.
Tuition in the course for 1, 2, or 3 people per room.
Breakfast every day
Five dinners: catered welcome dinner at the castle on the second night, a farewell dinner on the last night, and three other restaurant dinners.
Three lunches during tours.
House wine and other drinks included with all meals and at the castle.
All activities discussed in the Activities section, including guiding fees and admissions where required.
Transportation to and from the venue.
Transportation to the various activities (but if you prefer not to rent a car, contact us and we'll consider providing transportation for a small supplement).
Mandatory travel insurance.
Meals not specified (2 dinners and any other meals you prefer to eat on your own).
A deposit of 25% is required at the time of reservation to select a room. This deposit is refundable for 14 days or until July 1st, whichever is earlier. After that, the deposit is non-refundable.
Full payment is due July 10th. This payment is non-refundable. In the event that you are not able to attend you may nominate an alternate person to attend in your place.
You are required to have insurance with "cancel for any reason" coverage. We will ask you for the name of the carrier and the policy number during booking.
Meet the Team
Our team will ensure that your visit to the Castello di Magona is not only the most valuable professional learning experience you've ever had, but also an unforgettable getaway. In addition to our team members, the attentive castle staff will endeavor to make your stay delightful.
Inquire / Book Now
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Booking and inquires start the same way, by contacting us using the form below. We're happy to communicate by email or to give you a call at your convenience.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is this course tax deductible?
You will need to consult your tax advisor. In general, the cost of training and education (including transportation and lodging) is deductible under US law if it relates to your business and benefits your business activities.
Will my employer pay for this course?
It's possible. This is a professional education course taught by a well-known professional trainer who offers similar (but generally less in-depth) versions of the same materials at conferences and corporate training sessions. The cost, on a double-occupancy basis, is generally in line with courses of similar length taught in other venues. We are always happy to communicate with your HR department if they have questions or if they require an itemized breakdown.
Is there a minimum number needed for the course?
Yes, we need to fill six of the ten rooms in order for the course to go ahead.
What language is the course taught in?
While our team speaks English, Italian, some French, and some Spanish, all the teaching will be in English only.
Do I need my own transportation?
Yes. We expect each party to arrive at the venue by car. If you are interested in sharing a car with another attendee, please let us know and we'll put you in touch with anyone else in a similar position.
If you prefer not to drive, we're considering offering transportation service in a small mini-bus for an extra charge of about $300 per person. Please inquire if interested.
Is the Castello di Magona a hotel?
No, the castle is not a hotel. Think of it more as a very, very nice vacation rental that is only available as an exclusive weekly rental. There will be one housekeeping visit midway through the week.
Will my non-course attending companion enjoy this program?
We work very hard to ensure that there's plenty of activity for everyone. While attendees are in class, other people can enjoy the castle or some of the separate activities we organize for them. Of the three-person staff we'll have at the program, only Carl is dedicated to the instruction. Larry and Marco will be organizing other activities.
What if I'm one person but want to pay the double-occupancy rate?
We don't arrange roommates ourselves, but if you're interested in sharing one of the rooms that can be configured with twin beds, please let us know and we'll put you in touch with anyone else who is also interested.
Is my special diet accommodated?