Your Italy and Bali Experts
We are Rob Friedman and Stacey Mattraw, owners of Sojourn Ventures. We offer Italy and Bali vacation packages to non-profit organizations to aid their fundraising efforts. We also help individuals and groups create vacations of a lifetime in these locales.
For the past 20 years, we have lived traveled extensively throughout Europe and Asia with an emphasis on Italy and Bali. We own several of the properties listed on this site and serve as booking agents for the others you’ll find here.
We have deep and lasting relationships with people in both Italy and Bali that allow us to offer our guests sojourns that go beyond the normal tourist experience. We take our guests’ needs and desires very much to heart and it is our mission to create meaningful stays full of discovery and adventure.
I studied Italian and art history in Florence, Italy during a year abroad in 1976. This ignited my lifelong passion and love for Italy, the Italian language, and art history. Years later, after visiting the Tuscan hill town of Cortona, Rob and I decided to uproot our lives and move ourselves and our two young sons to live there for a year. While the boys were busy acclimating to Italian elementary school, we stumbled upon the opportunity to purchase Casa San Marco, a 500 year old home in the center of Cortona. We restored and furnished this amazing property and shortly after began renting week long stays at Casa San Marco.
Today, nearly twenty years later, Rob and I have created a network of local Italian property owners in Cortona with whom we work closely and whose properties are now also included in our listings for vacation packages. The packaging of these rental properties has enabled us offer them to nonprofits for their fundraising endeavors. It is my utmost pleasure to have been able to turn my life and love for Italy into something unique that can be shared with all of our guests and that, more importantly, through these partnerships with nonprofits, is able to make a meaningful impact on the world.
I first traveled to the magical island of Bali over twenty years ago. Little did I know how much it would change my life. While there I met a young man named Wayan Menu, who would become one of my closest friends. He introduced me to his welcoming family who took me in as one of their own. Thus began my deep connection to Bali.
As time progressed and our visits continued, we purchased land together and started building a home there. To this day, I am thankful for meeting Wayan and having the incredible opportunity to enjoy his family, friends, and Balinese culture. Our friendship and passion for Bali is the foundation for everything we do as partners, and it is our desire that guests be able to experience Bali in the fullest and most authentic way possible.
Wayan Menu- Our Bali Partner
I was born in the small fishing village of Amed located on the eastern coast of Bali, Indonesia. I began working at age twelve, doing odd jobs like fishing, stone carving, and selling satay on the beach.
I was fortunate in 1998 to meet Rob Friedman and we quickly became friends. I was able to obtain a visa and visit Rob and his family for six months. After this, we purchased some land in Amed and began a modest boutique hotel. We employ many locals and together we have helped my community of Amed.
Thanks to my friend Rob I was able to go back to school and graduate in 2015 from university here in Bali. We are proud of our beautiful home of Amed and continue to welcome many guests from all over the world.