In the first of its new series of annual events, Ensemble recently held its inaugural Uncharted advisor-focused virtual event.
With a theme of Seeking Spectacular, more than 1,000 advisors had the opportunity to learn about destinations and partners through virtual sessions that allowed them to take a deep dive into the experiences, destinations and trends that are top of mind for today’s travellers.
The day’s agenda – including a live session broadcast from the Park Hyatt Toronto — also included one-on-one networking appointments, opportunities to virtually visit partner booths throughout the entire event, and discussion rooms where members can learn more about all the many new Ensemble programs that have been introduced over the past several months.
Among the virtual experiences featured were:
- Seabourn’s Senior Manager of National Accounts Maxine Gundermann shared what life is like onboard a Seabourn ship.
- Adventure Canada presented a journey into the Northwest Passage
- Titanium Tours provided attendees with a lesson in how to prepare an authentic farm to table meal from a Michelin-starred chef
- Tourism New Zealand introduced participants to the wonders of the country as seen through the eyes of one of Ensemble’s own advisors, McKenzie McMillan.
- British Virgin Islands Tourism shared its cultural heritage with virtual performances by local dancers and the Razor Blades Band before taking guests to the Caribbean Sellers Bar for a mixologist lesson on how to make a traditional BVI cocktail, the Chocolate Caramel Bushwacker.
- Lindblad Expeditions founder Sven Lindblad, considered one of the pioneers of expedition travel, shared his perspective about “the world and all that is in it.”
- Las Vegas Convention & Visitors Authority pulled back the curtain to share all that the city prides itself on keeping secrets of what happens in Vegas.
- Bahamas Tourist Office introduced participants to the beauty of the islands for a “bird’s eye view” of the archipelago
- Park Hyatt Toronto – The host hotel shared a brief video tour of their fully renovated suites and introduced its food & beverage program including a fully kosher kitchen and local, sustainable farm-to-table approach.
With more than 30 companies participating, other experiences were presented by Antigua & Barbuda Tourism Authority, Celebrity Cruises, Club Med, G Adventures, Goway Travel, Kensington Tours, Manulife, Micato Safaris, Princess Cruises, Rocky Mountaineer, Ya’lla Tours USA and others.
Michael Johnson, President of Ensemble, observed: “We are always excited when we can bring together our members and our partners for opportunities to learn more about what’s new with their product or destination as well as to meet – virtually or in person – to deepen those important relationships”
Johnson continued: “This was a productive and innovative way to accomplish both of those goals at a time when travel is surging making it even more essential to educate members on product and destination updates so they have the information, tools and resources to guide their clients effectively.”
In keeping with a promise to refocus efforts on training and development, Ensemble’s Senior Vice President of Operations, Kristina Boyce, announced the launch of a new training program, Ensemble Training Academy (ETA).
Paired with existing partner training programs, the ETA e-learning modules have been designed to help new-to-industry advisors establish a pipeline of customers; overcome objections; and learn about ways to increase their close rate.
Jennifer Dzialo, Senior Vice President, Partner Relations, also announced new advisor incentives as a new focus for 2023 to support bookings with Ensemble’s preferred partners.
Uncharted is part of the new series of annual branded events that Ensemble announced earlier this year. Next up is Ensemble Summit, a high-level executive getaway, which will take place from June 4 to June 7 at the Forbes Five-Star Stein Eriksen Lodge in Utah followed by the Ensemble Beyond event for top performers from Aug. 1 to Aug. 8 in partnership with Explora Journeys, a preferred partner of Ensemble. The Beyond trip will be one of the very first journeys for Explora following its inaugural voyage offering this group one of the first highly coveted opportunities to experience firsthand this anticipated new product.
All these events culminate with Ensemble Horizons – the gathering for the entire Ensemble community – which will take place from Nov. 2 to Nov. 6 at Paris Las Vegas Hotel & Casino.
Complementing the educational and networking aspects of Uncharted, several prizes were featured including a 7-night Seabourn Alaska cruise; a $1,000 Travel Corporation voucher; a five-night Club Med stay; a one-night stay in a bi-level suite at the Park Hyatt Toronto including cocktails and massage; three gift packs of $500 G dollars from G Adventures and more.
Go to www.ensembletravel.com for more.