I embarked on my career in travel some 25 years ago when I took a management degree in tourism at Plymouth University. After completing my thesis on tour operators, I took my first job working in reservations before moving on to a new tour operator to become a Far East specialist, later becoming a Product Manager for the Far East, Caribbean, Middle East and Indian Ocean. Following an acquisition, I took on the role of General Manager at Western & Oriental, overseeing sales, marketing and product development. Finally, in July 2015, I joined the ITC Travel Group during their acquisition of Western & Oriental and was appointed Head of Product.
When I joined the team here, I immediately recognised how everyone across the business was just like family to each other. Everyone works toward the same goal; putting the client first and at the heart of everything they do.
I believe that our level of personal service and the depth of destinations we feature across all ITC Travel Group brands is what makes us truly special. We always go above and beyond, whether that’s being met at the airport by our concierge team, pre-booking dinner reservations, kids’ clubs and spa treatments or arranging private dining on a secluded sandbank.
When it comes to travelling myself, I love exploring new destinations, learning about new cultures, meeting the locals, eating different cuisine and doing plenty of activities and excursions to really get the most out of every place I visit. I recently went with my family to Sri Lanka. I’d been before to the Cultural Triangle and west coast, but this time explored the stunning beaches of the east coast and the south coast, where we were lucky enough to see two blue whales and pods of dolphins.
I’ve had some incredible travel experiences during my career in travel. One of the most memorable was swimming with whale sharks in the Maldives. I’ll also never forget climbing a volcano in Bali or jumping out of a plane at 10,000ft in New Zealand- I won’t be doing that again in a hurry!
My favourite place to visit in the Far East would have to be Vietnam because of its fantastic culture and beaches. There are so many places to explore, from Hanoi and Halong Bay in the north, to Hoi An and Danang in the centre and Ho Chi Minh and the Mekong Delta in the south.
There are so many great accommodations to choose from… it depends which country we’re talking about! In India it would be the Oberoi Rajvilas in Jaipur, a former royal residence set in exquisite landscaped gardens, filled with beautiful trees and exotic birds.