Author: Jenny Graham, Director, Quintessentially Travel
8 Dec 2016
Demand for tailor-made leisure and corporate travel is on the rise, but in a market flooded with choice, it’s becoming very difficult to identify travel companies that truly go above and beyond. One firm working hard to stand out in this crowded market is luxury tour operator and travel agent Quintessentially Travel. European CEO spoke to Director Jenny Graham about the changing landscape of travel and the increasing demand for a personalised service.
Tell us about Quintessentially Travel’s history and how the company has reacted to shifts in the market
Established in 2010, Quintessentially Travel is the specialist division of Quintessentially, the world’s leading lifestyle management and concierge service (though membership is not a prerequisite to book travel). Being born from a service that anticipates and fulfils the needs of high-net-worth individuals means we’ve come to amalgamate all faces of luxury travel, including tailor-made holidays, private jet charters, business travel and corporate incentives. Our recent acquisition of CJL Total Travel Management was in response to the many requests we’ve received from our members and corporate clients seeking a high-touch corporate travel service. This expansion means we can provide clients with an all-encompassing global travel management solution. We’ve also developed our bespoke corporate incentive schemes, going beyond the traditional conference venue or meeting room – be it a mountaintop monastery, dormant volcano, or even among the icebergs. Our aim is to create exceptional travel experiences to help businesses increase profits, improve service, enhance morale, retain staff and clients, and acknowledge increased levels of performance. Our client portfolio spans a range of sectors, including Young Presidents Organisation, Peroni, Zurich Insurance, Samsung and Aston Martin, as well as range of SMEs and institutions in London’s financial district.
How does your approach differ to others in the sector, and what types of benefits do you offer?
We are the only truly localised global concierge, lifestyle and travel management company in the world. With our team of travel specialists, dedicated travel offices in London, Dubai, Hong Kong, LA and New York, and access to 60 additional concierge offices, we ensure localised, tailor-made services in a global environment.
Alongside our hotel booking platform, which houses over 60,000 negotiated hotel contracts, we’re a founding member of Virtuoso, the travel industry’s most powerful luxury network. This grants us access to over 1,200 of the world’s finest hotels in 150 countries, so we can provide our clients with complimentary, exclusive benefits and VIP privileges – something many travel companies simply cannot provide.
We are the only truly localised global concierge, lifestyle and travel management company in the world
Our current headline VIP benefits include the Ritz in Paris, where we offer guaranteed upgrades at the time of booking, daily full breakfast for two guests, and complimentary return private airport transfer with VIP meet-and-greet on arrival. At the iconic Gleneagles in the UK, we offer an upgrade at the time of booking, a full Scottish or continental breakfast, afternoon tea for two (once during your stay), a complimentary round of golf, and early check-in and late check-out options. Whether you are planning a meeting in New York, a family holiday at One&Only Reethi Rah, a country escape in Coworth Park, or a corporate retreat to Iceland, we will cater for all travel requirements, guaranteeing exceptional service and exceptional value.
What challenges is the travel industry facing at present, and how do you steer Quintessentially’s response?
The industry has made the world more accessible through its transport connections, and its variety of residences and experiences; it’s a thriving and incredibly competitive industry, and the demand of travellers is only growing. This is a challenge, but also a great opportunity for us as a specialist travel provider.
We know our clients are increasingly time-poor, and there is an overwhelming amount of information available online. Offering a high-touch personalised travel service means we can get to know our clients very well – learn their likes and dislikes, and how to anticipate their needs. We’ll quickly cut through all the noise and offer a carefully considered itinerary, based on each client’s needs, preferences and budget. For this reason, a hassle-free global service like ours is becoming very valuable in an ever-changing environment.