Luxury side lock up Apr 2024
Luxury side lock up Apr 2024


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First-ever Luxury Travel Collection Business Owners Soirée concludes on Hayman Island

After three days of inspiration, connection and leadership development, the curtains have come down on Flight Centre Travel Group's (FCTG) first-ever Luxury Travel Collection (LTC) Business Owners Soirée on Hayman Island. MATT LEEDHAM reports from Queensland's Whitsundays.

After three days of inspiration, connection and leadership development, the curtains have come down on Flight Centre Travel Group’s (FCTG) first-ever Luxury Travel Collection (LTC) Business Owners Soirée on Hayman Island. MATT LEEDHAM reports from Queensland’s Whitsundays.

Over 100 Business leaders, including business owners, managers, and supplier partners from Australia, New Zealand, and The UK, along with senior LTC executives, gathered for the landmark celebration on Hayman Island.

For many of LTC’s independent members attending, this was the first time they had met face-to-face, marking a significant milestone for the new network, which, it’s worth remembering, was only officially launched in January this year.

The innovative leaders’ gathering, themed Luxury Unlocked, focussed on LTC’s key objective of unlocking opportunities to ‘create the next generation of luxury travel’.

Luxury Travel Collective
Global MD of Luxury & Independent Leisure, Danielle Galloway, and James Kavanagh, FCTG’s Global CEO of Leisure

After enjoying a thought-provoking, content-rich first day of luxury travel updates, trends and insights and a fun-filled night of ‘Tropical Temptations’ thanks to Oceania Cruises, day two of LTC’s first-ever Soirée saw delegates get out and about in the sunshine as they travelled around Hayman Island to attend partner immersion sessions in small groups.

The 11 immersion partners, which showcased their latest luxury offerings through innovative hands-on experiences, included Adventure World, Collette, Discova & Back Roads Touring, GLOBUS Family of Brands, IHG, Oceania, Ponant, Regent Seven Seas, Scenic, Scott Dunn, and Viking Cruises.

Luxury Travel Collective Soiree Immersions
Master Weaving Immersion with Adventure World at the Luxury Travel Collective Soirêe

Each partner hosted a 30-minute discovery session featuring a mix of indoor and outdoor immersive and fun activities, such as Agave Tasting, Coffee Appreciation, Cocktail Making, Master Weaving, Golf, and Yoga.

LTC said this approach aligns with current trends by bringing the partner experiences to life differently. 78 per cent of new luxury travel consumers prioritise experiential activities that create lasting memories. Millennials and Gen Z, driving 100 per cent of luxury spending growth, particularly value these experiences​​.

Dani Galloway, Global Managing Director of Luxury & Independent Leisure at FCTG, highlighted the importance of deep product knowledge in luxury travel. “A core requirement of any luxury travel owner is product knowledge, making Immersion Day a critical way to absorb new information about Partners, as well as strengthen their connections with the senior executives of each partnering brand,” she said.

Luxury Travel Collective Soiree
Crêpes Immersion with Ponant at the Luxury Travel Collective Soirêe

LTC says the concept of immersive experiences also extends to LTC’s new Galeries de Luxe Product Department Store, where each luxury partner is committed to delivering an exceptional, signature experience.

Anna Burgdorf, LTC Global Brand & Marketing Director, noted, “LTC puts the requirements of the luxury consumer at the centre of our strategy. Although LTC is a B2B House, this means delivering the right support tools and structures to our members, enabling them to provide the all-essential elevated experience for their clients.

“The Island Immersion Day was a sensational way to demonstrate just how successful the concept can be when purpose-designed for the client’s added value. It’s all about ‘show rather than tell’,” she said.

Luxury Travel Collective
Yoga Immersion with Viking Cruises at the Luxury Travel Collective Soirêe

The group’s Galeries de Luxe, introduced at LTC’s Luxury Product Showcase in February, is rapidly developing its curated selection of luxury brand products. “Galeries de Luxe is the next generation of luxury product curation,” says Ms Galloway.

It’s a high-end Department Store of curated brands that delivers experience as a standard feature. With amenities now a basic expectation of the luxury traveller, it’s important to overdeliver rather than simply meet expectations,” Galloway explained​​.

An insightful ‘Lunch & Luminary’ session also offered partners a platform to share their latest news and views with delegates in an engaging panel format, moderated by Anna Burgdorf, LTC Global Brand & Marketing Director.

The panel included Sean Martin, MD of G Adventures Australia and New Zealand; Cassandra Kerr, Director of Sales for Silversea Australia and New Zealand; Jonica Paramaor, Global Director of Sales for Como Hotels and Resorts; and David Clark, MD Australia for Tauck.

The closing event, hosted by Regent Seven Seas Cruises, encapsulated the essence of French Riviera chic with a fun-filled evening of dancing and entertainment themed around ‘Sun. Sea. Chic’.

Dani Galloway Lisa Pile
Lisa Pile, Vice President Sales & General Manager, Asia Pacific at Regent Seven Seas Cruises and Danielle Galloway, Global MD of Luxury & Independent Leisure

Ms Galloway concluded, “The inaugural Soirée was an exceptional and exciting opportunity to connect a celebrated group of industry professionals in a differentiated way, building exceptional value into every single part of the event”​​.

More network growth is on the cards

Luxury Travel Collection
LTC Business Owners in attendance all received a Galeries De Luxe experience on day one

Speaking to Karryon, LTC confirmed it will welcome five new independent members in July 2024, bringing the network’s total to 13 independent members.

An additional two to five new members are predicted to join LTC by Christmas 2024, with the network estimated to total 20 independent members plus Travel Associates and Scott Dunn by the end of the financial year in July 2025.

The Luxury Travel Collection Business Owners Soirée will return again in 2025, with dates and a venue to be confirmed in the coming months.

The invite-only LTC member portfolio of independent luxury leisure travel specialists currently includes the Travel Associates network in Australia and New Zealand, Scott Dunn in the UK, Home Travel Company, Emma Whiting Travel & Cruise, Bicton Travel, Claremont Travel & Cruise, Ramsgate Travel Service, Destination HQ, Travel Experts, and Dream Maker Travel.

The Luxury Travel Collection’s (LTC) inaugural Business Owners Soirée on Intercontinental Hayman Island took place from 14 to 17 May 2024.

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