|Ensemble Co-presidents Lindsay Pearlman (L) and Libbie Rice (R) with luncheon speaker Patricia Schultz, author of “1,000 Places to See Before You Die.” // Photo by Ensemble|
Ensemble Travel Group reports it recently wrapped up its inaugural series of “Ensemble EXTRAORDINARY!” trainings in the U.S., a program designed to help members grow their sales of high-margin, niche products with a select group of Ensemble preferred partners.
More than 220 front-line travel professionals participated in one of three full-day sessions conducted in San Francisco; Garden Grove, CA; and Jersey City, NJ.
“In taking a look at the direction of what our members are selling, clearly the high-yield, experiential-adventure travel is huge right now,” said Ensemble’s Cristie Newell, director of training and development, North America, who first developed the training event for Ensemble members in Canada in 2012. “Through our Ensemble EXTRAORDINARY! event and its focus on niche products, our members were able to gain access to these global boutique partners on an all-important face-to-face basis. We had more than 20 supplier partners participate, with some coming as far as Egypt, Turkey, and India to connect with these key travel professionals.”
Each Ensemble EXTRAORDINARY! program was kicked off by Kim Specht, Ensemble national training manager, who presented "Creating and Selling Extraordinary Experiences,” which spotlighted selected Ensemble tools and programs specifically geared to the experiential-adventure market. Travel journalist Patricia Schultz, author of “1,000 Places to See Before You Die,” was the luncheon keynote speaker. The comprehensive afternoon training was supplier-based and featured individual presentations and small-group exchanges. The event wrapped up with a trade show and cocktail reception.
Overall sponsors for Ensemble EXTRAORDINARY! in the U.S. were Tauck, Uniworld Boutique Worldwide Collection, G Adventures, and Travel Guard. Participating partners were Seabourn, Lindblad Expeditions, Voyages of Discovery/Swan Hellenic, Regent Seven Seas Cruises, Australis Cruises, Ensemble Villas & Vacation Homes, Silversea Cruises, SeaDream Yacht Club, Ensemble Luxe Life, Backroads, African Travel, Trails of Indochina, Travel2, Titanium Tours, Zutshi Travel World Service, CIE Tours, Vitesse Worldwide, Visit Jordan, Vanguard Travel Services, Egypt & Beyond, Hyatt Hotels & Resorts, Starwood Hotels & Resorts, and Fairmont Hotels & Resorts.