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Published on : Thursday, August 11, 2016
International luxury travel network Virtuoso honoured six of its key partners for overall excellence at last night’s Destination Showcase Dinner & Awards. The ceremony, which attracted close to 1,400 travel agency members and preferred partners, was one of many events at the 28th annual Virtuoso Travel Week conference, happening this week at Bellagio Resort & Casino, ARIA Resort & Casino and Vdara Hotel & Spa in Las Vegas.
Hosted by Virtuoso Chairman and CEO Matthew D. Upchurch, and Albert Herrera, Virtuoso’s senior vice president of Global Product Partnerships, the Destination Showcase celebrated partners that offer exceptional experiences globally to Virtuoso clients, while providing outstanding expertise to Virtuoso travel advisors.
“Each of these honoured companies embodies Virtuoso’s commitment to innovation and passion for delighting clients,” said Herrera.
“As a network, we are incredibly selective, only admitting partners with a strong heritage of knowledge, offerings, service and relationships. Given our rigorous requirements, these six partners are truly the crème de la crème of a very impressive Virtuoso portfolio. We applaud their excellence and ability to inspire the entire network.”
Each of the Destination Showcase Awards corresponds to an elected committee of Virtuoso advisors. Those committees designate a list of finalists for each award, then all network advisors vote to determine the winners. This year’s Destination Showcase Award nominees received more than 5,300 votes altogether.
The winners are all part of the network’s lauded land excursions program, Virtuoso Destinations & Experiences. It consists of more than 60 tour operators, 160 On-Site in-country specialists and 11 specialty partners in over 140 countries. The fast-growing portfolio features close to 15,000 tours from more than 200 land operators. As well, Virtuoso’s tourism board partners are honoured at the dinner, with the year’s best selected from among the network’s 73 preferred destinations.
The 2016 Virtuoso Destination Showcase Award winners are:
Best Destinations & Experiences – FIT/Custom Partner: Micato Safaris
Best Destinations & Experiences – Escorted Tour Partner: Tauck
Best Destinations & Experiences – In-Country Partner: Journey Mexico
Best Virtuoso Active & Specialty Travel Partner (VAST) – Lindblad Expeditions
Best Voyager Club Experience – Abercrombie & Kent Hong Kong | Shanghai Highlights with Lunch at the Whampoa Club
Tourism Board of the Year – Tourism New Zealand