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How a couple reinvented the traditional tour guide

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Lani Bevacqua and Paul Bennett met in college and have been together ever since, but their trajectory has been anything but traditional. In the early 2000s, the couple gave up their New York City apartment and sailed in an 38-foot boat to Rome, where they ended up staying and starting a family.

Neither Bevacqua nor Bennett were strangers to creative thought — he was an award-winning National Geographic reporter and author of books on architecture, while she had worked as a graphic designer and art director — so entrepreneurial initiative came naturally to them. The two found themselves in Rome with a baby, and decided they needed a business. That’s how their idea for Context, a walking tour company, was born.

Bevacqua and Bennett — intellectually curious travelers themselves — reimagined both the traditional travel guide and the internet model of one-sentence online reviews to give modern travelers an immersive look into the places and cultures they visit. Here’s how they tackle the challenges of the tourism industry.

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