Travel Insider

BC Business |  December/January 2020

lifestyle • travel • media

Mary Jean Headshot

If your family has winter wanderlust, consult the woman called one of the world’s best travel advisers by Forbes and Condé Nast Traveler on what’s hot this season. MARY JEAN TULLY, Toronto-based CEO of Tully Luxury Travel, has plenty of executive (and celebrity) clients whose wish lists for the holiday season include “reconnecting with loved ones and family on multi-generational family trips.” Villa rentals, safaris and cruises, and other destination-based experiences can help families disconnect from technology and “get back to a time when sitting around a campfire, having a singalong or playing a board game was all the entertainment needed,” Tully says.

Her clients crave destinations that value conservation and sustainability. “They may care about where their food comes from–is it local, or was it shipped a long distance?” she explains. “They avoid activities that are harmful to wildlife or not respectful of cultures. They want to learn about Indigenous cultures and meet the locals through first-hand interactions with different cultures, nature and history.” If that sounds like you, consider South Pacific or Asian destinations this winter–both popular with Tully’s clients.

Tully also has pro tips for combining some family time with business trips. Look for urban hotels offering weekend family or romance rates (always pick a hotel with an indoor pool for kids, she says): “Adding two or three nights onto a business trip can make it feel like a real mini-vacation.”

Once you’ve nailed down dates, buy online tickets or get concierge help with booking local entertainment, events, reservations and spa appointments. “Don’t wait to do this until the last minute as they always book up,” Tully says. Or find a weekend spot within two hours of your business destination, meet up with your family and hire a driver to guide you there. “You’ll be more relaxed when you arrive and will learn things on the way from your driver and guide,” Tully notes.

 

 

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