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Cheers to 25 years! Travel Associates & its first, flagship store celebrate a quarter of a century

Luxury travel agency brand Travel Associates and the first store to bear its name, Ashmore, Harris & James Travel Associates, have celebrated 25 years of operations. 

Luxury travel agency brand Travel Associates and the first store to bear its name, Ashmore, Harris & James Travel Associates, have celebrated 25 years of operations. 

The Travel Associates team and its flagship store, located in the Melbourne suburb of Canterbury, marked the dual milestone with a big birthday bash at Pietro Gallus Estate in Warrandyte, where they hosted 75 guests, clients, stakeholders and partners.

Representatives from luxury brands Abercrombie & Kent, Silversea, Ponant and IHG were among those present at the event.

Ashmore, Harris & James Travel Associates was a pioneer in the Travel Associates network, being the first to open. It served as a trial to see how people would respond to an agency concept that exclusively focused on offering the most premium travel products. 

Dani Galloway (centre left) with the Ashmore Harris & James team. Travel Associates
Dani Galloway (centre left) with the Ashmore Harris & James team.
Travel Associates Emcee Casey Bennetto
Emcee Casey Bennetto (right)

“Twenty-five years ago, I gave the go ahead to trial the first Travel Associates office. As our first office we were not expecting that a high-end travel boutique would be so well received in the Melbourne community of Canterbury,” Travel Associates Founding Director Geoff Harris said. 

“It’s a testament to former business leader, Greg Ashmore, and now Christine Bottrell, that the level of service provided to clients is not only exceptional but has exceeded all our expectations in the community. 

“Luxury travel is a specialist skill, and this team has continued to build on the reputation for quality and professionalism for a quarter of a century.” 

Travel Associates
Kellie Woodward (left) and Nicole Buhagiar of Ashmore Harris & James
Marking 25 years of Travel Associates
Marking 25 years of Travel Associates

Global Managing Director of Luxury Leisure for FCTG, Danielle Galloway, said the brand had come along way since its creation – and still had further to go.

“We are so incredibly proud of this milestone for Travel Associates, this founding business which has showcased our DNA so successfully, and to remain the leader in curating one-of-a-kind travel experiences for discerning clients,” she remarked.

“The now legendary purple ribbon service which is delivered by our amazing advisors every day will continue to be the reason for our success, alongside our bespoke and tailored approach to every client’s luxury holiday. 

“Every client, every travel advisor and every holiday is ‘one of a kind’.”

Founder Geoff Harris
Founder Geoff Harris
Dani Galloway
Dani Galloway speaks

Ashmore, Harris & James Travel Associates Business Leader Christine Bottrell added, “Travel is an investment in life and our clients entrust our team of advisors to fulfil these one-of-a-kind experiences and create a lifetime of memories.”

She also paid homage to Greg Ashmore, whose name would be “forever associated with the Travel Associates DNA”.

Professor Mark Compton, a long-time client of the agency, lauded the business. 

“There are a few things about important professional relationships. First, it is about trust,” he remarked. 

“It is the Travel Associates advisors’ ability to solve problems as of course things don’t always go smoothly when travelling.

“After trust, it is customer service that matters above anything else. For me this is delivering on promises as well as for my advisor to be thinking ahead. I can rely on the expertise of my advisor in order to make an informed decision.”

Earlier this year, Travel Associates recognised its ‘best of the best’ at its annual gala event in Sydney. And how best to celebrate an unprecedented purple patch? With a purple carpet of course.