Dear G&L Traveller,

We can't quite believe the end of the year is here and we want to wish all of you a very Merry Christmas and a wonderful year of travelling ahead!

We hope you are able to come along to our Luxury Cruise Event in February, and if you like Gin we have an exclusive invite to an event in January!
Enjoy some stories on our recent travels.

Here's to a cracker 2016!
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Luxury Cruise Day - Monday 22 February - Save the Date
 
Gregor & Lewis will be holding a Luxury Cruise Event on Monday 22 February in Noosa. We will have representatives from eight of the most luxurious cruise lines including Silversea, Seabourn, Crystal, Regent Seven Seas, Oceania, Azamara, Ponant and Windstar. It will be a very informative day and worth saving the date in your diary. We will be sending out invitations early in the new year.
 
   
 
Galeries Lafayette
Paris Christmas markets
 
Luxury Travel Magazine Gold List
 
It's that time of year again, award season! We would love you to vote for Gregor & Lewis Bespoke Travel in the Luxury Travel Magazine 2016 Gold List Awards.

All you have to do is click on the link below and answer the questions. The most important question to answer is Question 31.

The answer for Question 31. Best Luxury Travel Agency......Gregor & Lewis Bespoke Travel

www.luxurytravelmag.com.au/GoldList

You can answer as many or as few questions as you like. If you also complete question 36 you will go in the draw to win a luxurious two night stay at Saffire, a beautiful luxury lodge in Feycinet, Tasmania - valued in excess of AUD7000.00!

Gregor & Lewis Bespoke Travel were extremely excited to come in 5th place in 2015 and would love to go even higher next year!

Voting closes Friday 22 January 2016.
 
   
 
ILTM Cannes
Paris by night
 
ILTM Cannes and Paris
 
I have just returned from a very successful brief visit to France. I attended ILTM(International Luxury Travel Mart) in Cannes where I had 50 appointments with some of the world's best luxury hotels, resorts and operators, obtaining invaluable contacts.

I then had the weekend in Paris. Hoteliers were appreciative of my visit. I must say that Paris was looking beautiful with the Christmas lights and Christmas Markets in full swing. The Champs Elysée was a sea of people with lots of families and tourists out and about. It was really nice to see Parisians as well as tourists enjoying this beautiful city. There was added security when entering any of the major shops and department stores, however nobody minded and this did not inconvenience me in any way. At no time did I feel unsafe.
 
   
 
Nanuku Restaurant & Bar
Wendy enjoying Likuliku Lagoon Resort
Vomo Island Resort beachfront
Vomo Island - The Rocks Bar
Likuliku Deluxe Beachfront Bure
Likuliku Fijian Restaurant
Likuliku pool
 
Fiji for the Discerning Traveller
 
Earlier this year I got to experience some of Fiji's finest luxury resorts.

Nanuku opened in 2014 and is located at Pacific Harbour on the main island of Viti Levu. It is a 2 hour drive from Nadi airport or a 20 minute flight from Nadi to the local airstrip. It is a very unique property suitable for couples and ideal for multi-generational families or groups of friends travelling together.

Nanuku's emphasis is on service and providing guests with a very special experience which I thought they did really well. The food is superb and can be served in the main dining area or set up on the beach or other areas for a more intimate dining experience.

Vomo has undergone major renovations which has resulted in contemporary
and extremely comfortable villas located on absolute beachfront or further up the hill to provide stunning ocean views. In addition to the villas, there are a number of ultra-luxurious residences able to cater for larger families or groups of friends. Vomo caters for families and couples with the recently remodelled Rocks Bar now adults only serving canapes and cocktails for sunset with an adults only nightly dining facility.

Vomo is fringed by white sandy beaches which means there is always a sheltered beach to be on and the crystal clear water is perfect for many activities. I really enjoyed being able to walk around the island and through the garden areas for some exercise.

Likuliku is an adult's only property easily accessible from Nadi by water taxi or helicopter. The large traditional Fijian style bures have modern amenities and private outdoor showers. The Deluxe Beachfront Bures have private plunge pools. Likuliku also offers the only overwater bures in Fiji. A highlight for me was the clear blue waters surrounding the resort which are perfect for snorkelling and water activities. Dining is a focus of Likuliku and the fabulous a la carte menus change daily.

Yasawa Island Resort & Spa provides a remote and traditional style of luxury resort. A 40 minute flight from Nadi brings you to the Yasawa airstrip. The majority of the resort staff come from the local villages and some have worked at the resort for years, which provided me with a real sense of engagement with the local culture and traditions. Yasawa has a stunning white beach and a short boat ride can take you to a deserted beach where you can enjoy a private picnic and time to yourselves. Children are welcome at Yasawa during periods around and during school holidays.

Fiji is a convenient, safe and friendly destination with a selection of resorts to suit everybody.

For more information on Fiji contact Wendy Hopping on 07 5447 4666 or email wendyhopping@gregorlewis.com.au
 
   
 
Roger and friends in Vancouver
The famous Chateau Lake Louise
Seaplane adventure!
Columbia Icefield Glacier Adventure
The stunning Lake Peyto
 
Roger's Canadian Tauck Experience
 
My colleagues kept telling me how good Tauck World Discovery trips were so my expectations were very high before I left to travel with Tauck.

The trip I undertook was one of Tauck's most popular, the 'Grand Canadian Rockies', a 10 day tour commencing in Vancouver and ending in Calgary which I did in September this year.

Well, I wasn't disappointed, I was more than pleasantly surprised and my experience was well beyond my expectations. I'm not sure if it was the effortless way the whole tour flowed or the variety of experiences that really impressed me.

The accommodation was almost always in Fairmont Hotels. All the rooms had stunning views especially those at the Fairmont Lake Louise & Fairmont Banff Springs, both stunning iconic hotels. There was ample free time to explore on your own and one never felt at all rushed. Most meals were included and may I say the dinners were sumptuous and breakfasts expansive.

With Tauck we also experienced numerous modes of transport, from ferries through the islands surrounding Vancouver, well-appointed coaches, a night on a Canadian ViaRail train and even a float plane flight that landed in Vancouver Harbour.

I would say that our Tauck guide, Chuck, really made the tour. He was extremely knowledgeable, humorous, relaxed and a really likable guy. He brought the whole group together and really made the whole trip a joy to be a part of.

One of Tauck's slogans is 'Never settle for ordinary' something I would say is definitely true from my experience with them - after all they have been in business for over 90 years.

The sightseeing is spectacular in the Rockies, there really is nothing like it and I'd encourage everyone to make the effort to go there, it really is worth it. Having said that I could not think of a better way to experience the Rockies than with Tauck.

For more information on Tauck and the Canadian Rockies contact Roger Koller on 07 5447 4666 or email rogerkoller@gregorlewis.com.au
 
   
 
Tea Plantation
Sigiriya Rock
Dambulla Buddhist Caves
Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage
Kristen at Bentota Beach
Local Fisherman at work
 
Sri Lanka - Island paradise
 
Located below the Southern tip of India, Sri Lanka is a perfect holiday destination. It experiences a warm and humid tropical climate, making it a year round destination, but to avoid the rainy season the best time to visit is November to March.

I recently visited Sri Lanka and found it to be a diverse travel experience filled with marvellous contrasts – mountains, tea and spice plantations, British Colonial architecture, Buddhist shrines, beaches and National Parks for spotting elephants, leopards, monkeys and exotic birds.

It is a country rich in history, culture, nature and archaeological sites.

My must sees on the tourist trail are the Palace Ruins atop Sigiriya Rock (quite a climb to get to the top but certainly worth the effort!), the Buddhist sites of Anduradhapura and Polonnarawa, Dambulla Buddhist caves, Yalla National Park, tea plantations, spice gardens, the ramparts of historic Galle Fort, a wildlife safari, visiting Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage, and relaxing on one of the golden sand beaches.

Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage was my highlight – you get to watch the young orphans having their morning bottle feed and then wander around the park meeting some of the residents, many of which have been rescued from the surrounding areas. At lunch time the elephants are taken down to the river to bath and play and we were able to spend an hour watching them interact with one another.

Whilst visiting Sri Lanka you can take part in a cooking class, wander through the lively street markets or experience the historic churches and temples.

There is a variety of accommodation options available from boutique hotels to bungalows and resorts. The Amaya Lake Resort in Dambulla is a wonderful property. Located right on the edge of a tank (lake), this property offers bungalow style accommodation set over a vast area. Here you can do bird watching, elephant safaris, jungle trekking, or relaxing by the lagoon pool. My other favourite was the Centara Ceysands Resort on Bentota beach. Accessible by boat across the harbour, this was the perfect destination to finish off our trip. The ocean was warm and clean, the large pool was inviting, there were multiple dining options, and there were lots of activities to join – snorkelling, canoeing, fishing, river safaris, jet skiing, or visiting a nearby turtle hatchery.

Sri Lanka offers an abundance of fresh seafood and fragrant curries all prepared to traditional recipes using local ingredients.

Highlights of this wonderful country are the sites, sounds and flavours – topped off by the friendly people, who make a visit to this destination truly special.

Singapore Airlines offers easy daily connections to Colombo from Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne.

Isn't it time you experienced paradise?

For more information on Sri Lanka please contact Kristen Cahill on 07 5447 4666 or email kristencahill@gregorlewis.com.au
 
   
 
Stuart and Jude
 
Four Pillars Gin Lunch - Wasabi Friday 15 January
 
Join me for lunch and conversation about the modern Australian sensibility of small batch gin making at Wasabi Restaurant & Bar in Noosa on Friday 15 January. There will be a special gift for any Gregor & Lewis clients that book for this lunch. Please let us know if you make a booking to register for your gift. Details can be found on the below link.
www.wasabisb.com/events/

 
 
  Italian Fiesta  
   
  Celebrations at Villa Petrolo  
   
  A Tuscan view  
   
  Lunch on Lake Como  
   
  Rome food tour  
   
  Blue Grotto  
   
  Truffle hunting  
   
  La Scala  
   
  Chianti  
   
  Officina della Bistecca ristorante  
  Italy is a great destination for a special celebration or an extended family get together. The Gregor family has just returned from a major celebration in Italy where we had 37 of our family and friends join us for a week in a Villa in Tuscany. There are so many Villas of varying sizes and quality all over Italy and it is an ideal way to relax, enjoy the country and do day trips to the fascinating sights of nearby towns.

Some of the must do things in Italy to make your holiday a little bit special.

Rome
A food tour with Katie Parla. Katie is an American who has lived in Rome for 20 years and she'll take you to her favourite pizza and gelato haunts, all before midday. It's a great way to get to know the backstreets of Rome and find out where and what to eat during your Roman stay.

Do a private tour of the Vatican Museum before the doors open at 8am. You'll have to get up early but you'll skip the queues and have rooms of beautiful statues and paintings all to yourself.

Eat at Rosciolo Salumeria, a modern Roman trattoria with a fabulous wine list, just near Piazza Navona.

Amalfi Coast
Stay in Praiano (five minutes from Positano) and what you save on accommodation spend on a glamour speed boat for the day, the only way to see Positano and surrounding towns. Praiano also has the best views back to Positano.

Alba
Make Alba your headquarters for exploring all the Barolo towns and vineyards and the local Piedmontese food. Eat at Bovio for incredible views and amazing pasta and truffles in season.

Go white truffle hunting in October to December.

Milan
Go to see the ballet or opera at La Scala.
Drink a Negroni at the Camparino Bar in The Galleria.

Chianti
Eat eight courses of steak at legendary butcher Dario Cecchini's Officina della Bistecca ristorante in Panzano in Chianti.

Venice
Get the ferry out to the postcard perfect town of Burano and eat seafood at Trattoria al Gatto Nero.

Take a water taxi at sunset up the Grand Canal – an alternate to a Gondola and cheaper too.

Do a Ghosts and Legends tour that takes you on the back streets and nooks and crannies of Venice at night. Fun and spooky.

There is just so much to see and do in Italy. Email us on noosa@gregorlewis.com.au to book your next Italian Sojourn
 
  Gregor & Lewis | 11 Arcadia St, Noosa Heads, Queensland, 4567 Australia
T + 617 5447 4666 | E noosa@gregorlewis.com.au | W www.gregorlewis.com.au