About James

james-fantaci-headshotJames Fantaci is a hospitality entrepreneur who has lived and traveled for several years in Tuscany. He has worked in wine retail, as well as in production at Flowers Vineyard and Winery in Sonoma, California, and founded a company that organically evolved from a consulting business for wine enthusiasts into a boutique Tuscan villa rental agency and concierge service, especially tailored for wine and food lovers, receiving press recognition for its unique approach to Tuscan hospitality.

James attended Skidmore College, the Wine & Spirit Education Trust, and graduated with honors from the Graduate Business program at the Cornell School of Hotel Administration. He built Purple Fete while in graduate school, and expanded his vocation to include boutique development, working with partners on a design-driven real estate project in New York.

Geographic History

Sonoma, California . New York City . Tuscany, Italy


James is inspired by good design: the marriage of form and function, and especially ideas that seek to create change. He was fortunate to have been inspired by a new approach to wine retail conceived when he still worked in wine retail but at the time would have logistically been impossible. However, with advancements in technology, the concept has evolved into a potentially innovative opportunity to create a new paradigm in wine retail.

The concept for Purple Fēte originated from his personal experience—including his frustrations—working in retail combined with his subsequent exposure to the wine business in Italy and California, specifically working with the concepts of Italy’s Enoteca and California’s Tasting Room.  Purple Fēte’s business model is designed to empower the consumer, and demystify the wine buying process in-stores and online and make the experience more fun, educational, and sticky, while creating a brand that people identify with quality wine, service, and conviviality. Please stay tuned to updates in development of Purple Fēte by signing-up for James’s email list.

James is also a passionate photographer, amateur cook, road biker, and investor. He has been published several times on various subjects including wine, hospitality, and business. He was also a contributing writer for the Motley Fool Blog Network. Follow him on Instagram.