Suppliers to Explore


Two weeks ago I stayed at Virgin Hotels which is a Virtuoso property.  I was there along with other members of my host agency’s Top Producers Club.  It did not dawn on me until I was here that Virgin Hotels is a fortuitous selection since it is owned by one of the world’s most renowned entrepreneurs, Sir Richard Branson.  We were gifted his memoir as a welcome gift which is when it finally clicked for me!  We were also gifted the below treats which were consumed much faster than information in the book will be! 

I am absorbed so much from the brilliant people in the meetings with me, but also really enjoyed the company of my colleagues.  It is always so invigorating to spend time with them.  Nobody understands this business unless you are in it.  So many people think my job is so “fun” but I have honestly never worked so hard in my life.  There is so much that goes into running a travel business, and travel is just one aspect.  It is refreshing to know that others are having similar struggles and to come up with solutions together.  I am always in awe of how collaborative my industry is.  I have so many new ideas spinning in my head and look forward to implementing them to enhance not only my client experience, but also my team’s experience.

I was so grateful to have a seat at the table this year and look forward to growing Explore More with the collective help of my travel community!

Supplier Relationships

Not only did we learn about each other’s businesses, but we had short presentations by some new partners and also some favorites.  Next week, I will give you updates on what I have learned from them. 
Remember my Explora Journeys night a few weeks ago?  During this trip, I met with Head of Sales at Explora Journeys and continue to learn more about this fascinating brand. 

Explora Journeys is attracting the non cruiser to experience the ocean state of mind.  I learned some things that I can not share yet, but I really want some of you to join me on the fall foliage sailing I am hosting October 13-20.  Hopefully, I can share more next week – but please reach out if you have any interest in joining us on that journey or any other Explora sailing.

Preferred Suppliers

And now to the good stuff, the supplier info I learned during my week in Nashville. There are so many unique ways to travel the world.  Through our affiliations with GTN, Virtuoso, and Forbes, we are able to develop relationships with some amazing travel brands.  Some of our GTN Preferred Partners joined the Top Producers Club in Nashville two weeks ago to enhance our relationships and teach us more about what they have to offer.  Some of these suppliers I have mentioned before, and some I never knew of prior to Nashville.  That is one of the most exciting things about the travel industry, the variety of businesses that exist to support travelers – many of which the general public does not know about.  You have to use a travel advisor to access so much of what is available, and I am realizing that the clients who appreciate this access are so important to the growth of Explore More.


Belmond is part of LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton, so you know that it is the real deal to be alongside such known luxury brands.  Some of you may think that Belmond is only a hotel brand. However, there is much more to Belmond including safari lodges, train journeys , and my personal favorite – barge river cruises in France.  I have actually covered barge trips in previous Weekly Explorers, as well as our clients at Belmond properties and my own personal stay at the Belmond Charleston Place.  Their hotels are so unique and in touch with the destination that surrounds them.  Today, I want to share some information about their rail journeys since I have not mentioned them previously.  There is the iconic Venice Simplon-Orient-Express,  the British Pullman which offers themed day trips out of London Victoria station, and The Royal Scotsman which allows guests to voyage across the Scottish Highlands and experience the country’s finest landscapes.  The Royal Scotsman offers niche trips that focus on subjects like castles or whiskey.  I have included this short video to paint a picture for you

Island Lux

I was so excited to meet the owner of this representation company.  I recently covered the subject of rep companies, but here is a quick recap – hotels and resorts that are not part of a major hotel chain do not have the bandwidth to bring their products in front of travel advisor so they hire rep companies to do that for them.  IslandLuxe is hyper focused on small, luxury, authentic Caribbean properties that excel in service, accommodations, and cuisine. 
IslandLuxe really knows the Caribbean and will be such a great resource for me when matching my clients to resorts that match their travel style, especially since so many clients that come to me are looking for authentic experiences.  Also, when a rep company connects me with one of their hotel or resorts, it ensures my clients will receive the VIP treatment.  The owner also gave us some fabulous ideas about island hopping in the Caribbean.  As much as I love doing this in Greece, I had never thought of doing it within the Caribbean!
IslandLuxe happens to rep my #1 wanderlist Caribbean hotel, so I thought I would share a photo to wrap up this write up.  I present to you, Jade Mountain!  Even though this is a Virtuoso affiliated property, being introduced by their rep company gives me an even higher level of service for my clients.

Villas of Distinction

Villas of Distinction is the supplier who took us to the awesome recording session in Nashville, so they definitely deserve a special shout out!  Their name pretty much says it all.  They are a luxury villa rental company that provides a much higher level of service than you get through VRBO or Airbnb, plus a lot more protection too.  So, if you are wanting to rent a large home for a group of people, please come to me so I can help you make an educated choice with a company that truly values your business.  Please note that this is generally for larger properties, but I have even seen 2 bedroom units villas in some destinations, so it never hurts to ask.

TCS World Travel

Now, TCS is a whole new concept to me and such a unique product.  While I think it will appeal more to retired luxury clients, they do offer some trips for families.  TCS World Travel is the industry leader in offering and operating Luxury Jet Expeditions to destinations around the globe.  I truly think the best way to share this jaw dropping travel service is via the video that was shared with us in Nashville …

Explora Journeys

Last, but not least, is our friend Explora Journeys.  I know you have been hearing a lot about them from me lately because of the cruise night I hosted and my upcoming hosting opportunity.  I found out that since I have already sold an Explora Journey, I am part of their Pioneer Program which means savings for YOU!  If you decide to join the voyage I am hosting or any other in 2023, I can give you a 10% discount and additional Journey Experience Credits (money to use during travel).  I will leave you with these flyers that have been shared before in case you needed this extra nudge to get this sailing booked!

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Join me on the Explora Journey cruise line. Your boutique cruise experience awaits. Read more here.

I am at the top of the Top Producers List at my host agency, Gifted Travel Network! Read more about our company growth here.