Based in Stone

Laura Wheeler

It's Nice To Meet You

Hi,

My name is Laura and I look forward to becoming your personal Travel Counsellor. I am based in North Oxfordshire with my black Lab, Oxley.

Over my 24 years in the travel industry I’ve experienced a number of different roles. These include 5 years working in a high street agency where I became a senior consultant. My career then took me abroad where I became a holiday rep in Zakynthos, a ski rep in Andorra, and a resort team leader in the west of Cyprus where I controlled the Paphos gateway, as well as arranging weddings. I returned to Andorra for one last season, before moving back to the UK to manage a Going Places store for 3 years. Before joining Travel Counsellors where I have just celebrate my 13th Anniversary.

I’ve been fortunate to visit many destinations in Europe, the Mediterranean, North America, Canada, the Caribbean, the Middle East, Indian Ocean, Bali, Thailand and Malaysia. I have also experienced cruising. My travel wish list continues to grow and I love talking to people about their holidays as it’s a great way to add to my knowledge.

Being an independent travel agent means that I’m able to use a vast number of suppliers which helps ensure I recommend the right holiday for you. Whether it be your next holiday, business trip, or short break, I'll deliver the highest levels of customer service. I can also tailor-make trips so don't be afraid to ask for something different.

Another string to my bow is arranging overseas weddings and honeymoons. The Travel Counsellors Honeymoon Gift Registry service will enable your guests to give you the honeymoon of your dreams. All you’ll need to worry about is choosing the perfect honeymoon to suit you. I’ll be on-hand to offer all sorts of advice and suggestions, whatever your requirements may be.

Above all, my main aim is to ensure that your travel experience, no matter how big or small is a memorable one for all the right reasons.

Thank you for visiting my page. If you like the idea of having your very own personal Travel Counsellor then pick up the phone or drop me an email and I will get back to you.

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My Blog

I absolutely live and breathe travel and I love to write about my experiences! Please take a look through my posts - you might find your own holiday inspiration.

California Dreaming…

20 December 2016

Wow what a dream it was. This trip was a works trip that was a road trip to four destinations across six nights. We stayed in Hollywood at the Loews for one night, Santa Barbara at the Harbour View Inn for two nights, Santa Monica at the Le Meridien Delfina for one night and Palm Springs at the Hyatt Regency, Indian Wells for two nights! To get to our road trip we had to fly in to Los Angeles and to get there from Heathrow I flew with Air New Zealand who I recommend in the highest regard. The staff are amazing, the aircraft was clean and in full working order (sometimes you hear of screens not working) and to top it off I had a sky couch on the way out. For those not in the know a sky couch is three economy seats converted in to a bed. So as a solo traveller you would pay a supplement for the two seats next to you and for a couple travel you can pay a supplement for the middle seat. For this trip I was a solo traveller and at 5”8 I could lie down comfortably had have a very nice sleep, which was great for me as I was one of the drivers. Highlights Hollywood - Waking up in Hollywood pulling back the curtains and seeing the Hollywood sign. - The Loews being in the perfect location to explore Hollywood. - Seeing the walkway of the stars and doing a behind the scenes Hollywood tour and being shown the point where Julia Roberts and Richard Gere meet in Pretty women. - Seeing where the Oscars takes place Santa Barbara - Perfect area to relax and great walks - Shopping - Beach - Wine trail. I would say it is a must stop off point for a few nights. I actually felt like I could happily move to Santa Barbara. Santa Monica - The best way to see Santa Monica to Venice Beach is on a bike ride - Feeling and being a part of the outdoor living - Going on the big wheel at the fun fair on Santa Monica Pier - Route 66 sign - Sunset at Erwin Hotel - Perfect cocktails at the Loews Santa Monica while sat round a fire pit looking over the pier at night Beverly Hills - Order a Cupcake from an ATM (I kid you not!) - Looking at all the designer shops - Walking around an iconic area. Palm Springs - Perfect place to just go and relax after a hectic few days travelling. - Shopping in either outlets or the local high street. - Great for golfers - And if you’re not a golfer, enjoy the spa. I had the delight, for the first time ever, of turning left on my way home with Air New Zealand. Yes, I was lucky enough to travel back in Business and to experience the wonderful flatbed. The perfect end to a stunning trip. This whole trip ignited my want to explore more of California. I love the fact that you can go in November be in shorts and a t-shirt it not be too hot and not have to worry about the weather. For me I’m now saving to do San Fran down to San Diego costal road. California – you’re making me dream bigger!

Dubai - Luxury travel at its finest...

17 October 2016

This educational was being held by the Dubai tourist board, Qantas Airlines and Kerzner group. The itinerary was full on but I loved every minute of it. It showed me that you can do Dubai in a weekend if you wanted. The flight left Heathrow at 2pm and we landed local time at midnight. Flying out, my seat was in Economy with Qantas and I was surprised at how much leg room you actually got, the crew were lovely and I had personal seat back entertainment. As we arrived into Dubai it was midnight and we were told it was 33 degrees...at midnight! The airport was air-conditioned so not too much of a shock from the 10 degrees I left back in the UK. Our first hotel we stayed in was Atlantis the Palm, from the airport to the top of the palm takes about 40 minutes at that time of night. Depending on what room type you’ve booked depends on what check-in area you use. The standard desks can be seen as you arrive or there’s a lovely club lounge for the guests who are staying in the club rooms, this is just off of the main reception and is more personable and intimate. Check-in was quick and easy and then I was on my way to my room. It was a great size with wonderful décor and all the amenities you require, but by now it was heading towards 02:30hrs in the morning and I was in need of that big comfy bed. It did not disappoint! We had a full tour of the Atlantis with some great surprises; the suites (they have two that look onto the aquarium from the bed and bathroom), the facilities, the waterpark (which gives you free entry when you stay), the hidden chamber with behind the scene tours and plenty of restaurants. If you really didn’t want to you wouldn’t have to leave! What I will say about the Atlantis Hotel is although it is 5 star with the service and standards, it is also a relaxed hotel so is perfect for all ages to feel at home. After the hotel tour and a sneaky peak of the new hotel plans, we just had to do a tour of the waterpark and test all the rides. I focused on the Lazy River and I can highly recommend it. It's a great waterpark, which again all will enjoy. As a little extra the Atlantis was kind enough to give us a cabana for the day, it is great for a group who wish to have a private area and even an assistant to arrange lunch. That night we had a hosted dinner in the Lebanese restaurant which was first class, again with perfect service and décor to complement the food. Day two in Dubai and another early start as we were going to see the Burj Kalifa. This is the tallest building in the world and based in downtown Dubai. It is connected to the Dubai shopping mall, probably the biggest mall I have ever been in, it has everything. This area is probably 30 minutes from the Atlantis the Palm which you can easily travel to by monorail or taxi, both are cheap. From here we moved onto the One&Only Royal Mirage and had come back around lunch to check-in. The One&Only Royal Mirage is basically three hotels within one area. The first is Arabian Court which is the entry level in regards to price, but still a prestige hotel with the highest of quality and service. We had a look around the hotel and were treated to lunch which was magnificent. After lunch we went to the Residence and Spa which is a much smaller, intimate hotel. The Residence & Spa is the top rated hotel out of the three, for guests staying at the Residence they can use the facilities at all three of the hotels but you have to stay at the Residence if you wish to use the pool here. The Palace was the last hotel we looked around due to the fact this is where we were staying for the next two nights. It was beautiful, I have been fortunate enough to stay in wonderful hotels around the world but I will honestly say this hotel wowed me. The One&Only truly know how to look after a guest. The furnishings were of the highest standard, the service again was first rate and all little touches and any wants were covered. What you will see if you ever stay here is that the rooms are sea facing. This is due to the fact that the hotel is only a few stories high and in line with the palm trees so you don't get in some cases to see the sea in full view. Our evening was spent enjoying a 4x4 desert safari, for the adrenalin junkies it's a must and the drivers are such fun. Not recommend for the travel sick, anyone with back injuries or any pregnant ladies as it is extremely bumpy. We laughed and screamed the whole way to our camp for the night where we then had great food, drink and entertainment all included in the cost. Our final day started with a few hours free time and I chose to test out the sunbeds. I feel like all I'm saying is that everything was perfect, but even these were perfect and to add a little touch, the pool assistant even came over and offered to clean my sunglasses. I know this is a little over the top and some people wouldn’t like this, but it's just another little touch the hotel offers and I liked it. After the sunbed inspection we had an afternoon at the One&Only the Palm, which you can get to via the courtesy boat shuttle service if you wished. It is on one of the branches of the Palm. To me the Royal Mirage was like a wonderful oasis in a busy growing city. Once you were within the grounds, Dubai life seemed to disappear. The One&Only the Palm however made me feel like I was in the Maldives, it was so peaceful. The beaches were amazing and it is again on another level from the Royal Mirage (which I would not have thought possible). You'll find a top rated spa, a main pool area and a smaller quieter pool, plus fabulous restaurants. I know I have just said that the Royal Mirage is one of the best places I have stayed, but I feel this hotel knocked spots off of it. The One&Only The Palm, by hook or by crook I will be back! Our last stop was back to downtown Dubai to see the Palace hotel and have a great bit of steak by the lake. If you wanted a short break or a stopover then the Palace or the downtown area is for you as you can walk out of an evening and have plenty of entertainment at your fingertips. I'm personally sold on Dubai, be it for business, a short break, a full holiday or a stop over to the Far East and beyond. It has everything and anything you could possibly want.

Great arts, great architecture, great shopping, great food, great people… Florence you had me at Cia

17 March 2016

Abercrombie and Kent (a wonderful luxury tour operator) invited me to spend a weekend in Florence seeing some of the hotels they worked with while getting a feel as to what the company is all about. A week before my departure date I received a lovely ticket wallet with my e-ticket plus a very detailed booklet which included my itinerary, inclusions, exclusions, useful contacts plus much more. So off I went early on a Saturday morning to Heathrow to meet my group at the gate before boarding our BA flight to Pisa. With BA as usual you are meet by a well-groomed professional greeting and a very clean plane with plenty of leg room and seat space. The flight over to Pisa was perfect all bar the last 30 minutes due to flying through a storm and actually being hit by lighting, which may I add is very common occurrence. Due to the storm, winds and lighting strike we actually could not land in Pisa (we had two attempts) and so was diverted to Rome. I would like to say that I cannot speak highly enough of the BA crew that were working on that flight as although they did not seem concerned, you could tell that many passengers were scared and not coping very well with the turbulence. The Crew dealt with the whole situations so professionally and even when we turned up in Rome they laid on coaches to transfer all the passenger to their original destination. Luckily I was on this occasion also being looked after A&K (Abercrombie & Kent) who to reduce the travelling time arrange for us to get the train from Rome Airport to the city and then on to Florence. If this was your holiday and you were not with an actually representative from the company all you would have to do is once you had landed was to use the contact numbers in the book to discuss your options or to call me being your travel Counsellors to help you out, a definite perk when problems arise. Anyway, an unplanned train journey and a later arrival in Florence was soon washed away with a glass of bubble’s on arrival at the Savoy hotel. A lovely introduction from the management a quick check in and then a freshen up before a lovely hosted meal from the Savoy to show the wonderful Menu that is on offer to guests, Very simple Italian food but cooked very well and a lovely relaxed setting, perfecto! While we were enjoying ourselves the lovely Chiara A&k’s local representative was juggling the itinerary so we could fit everything in. An early start for Sunday so we could have a brief tour with a local guide of Medieval Florence before having a hotel inspection of the Brunelleschi a lovely 4 star hotel just off from the Piazza della Repubblica, that features a circular Byzantine tower and a private museum in which is conserved the architectural ruins discovered during the restoration of the hotel. we then moved on to the Savoy the hotel, I was staying in for their hotel inspection. It’s a beautiful hotel and enjoyed being a guest of the hotel it’s style with a high standard in a luxury but relaxed style and the rooms are of a generous size, I’d say the walk in wardrobe was bigger than my bathroom!! The hotel is located next to the Duomo and within walking distance of The ponte Vehccio, Boboli gardens and the Uffizi Gallery. After the two hotel inspection we headed out to Chiantu region to a wonderful place called Podere Campriono for a cooking demonstration (I helped make the fresh pasta) that you then eat alongside the wine tasting in the family cellar for me this was a real high-light of my stay and I would say if you had a special celebration with friend you could go and experience this and stay the night as the family have rooms and then move on to Florence to enjoy the city. Once leaving lunch fully and tipsy we made our way back to Florence to visit an artisan perfume where we had a lesson on the essence of perfume which was very interesting. Do you know what Ambergris is…? After a fun packed day we had time to freshen up before enjoying more Italian food. But after such a busy day I was very ready for my bed. Last day in Florence was extremely special for many reasons. What was in the itinerary was a special access to the Contini Bonacossi Collection, a hotel inspection of the Four season and a quick snack before our flight. What actually happened was we did gain access to Contini Bonacossi Collection which Is in a secret part of the Uffizzi and had a private tour, this can be arranged if you’d like to see it. What made the morning extra special was the fact that (and this is good to note) the Uffizzi museum is not open on a Monday but due to the wonderful Chiara (A&K local rep) coming from the same village as the museums key master he actually open up the Uffizzi museum for us. Normally on any given day 6000 people can walk through the doors and we had 9 of us…amazing. So after our unplanned private tour we headed to our last hotel inspection. The four seasons Florence is still within the city but due to its location and gardens it’s like an oasis’s in a busy city and as all four season it’s is done to a very high standard with a first class service as you would expect from the five star hotel. The hotel was pretty full so we could not see all room category but we were lucky enough to see the suites with restored frescos and to finish off the tour a look in to royal suite with a night rate starting around 15000 euros you know it’s going to be special. As our tour of the impressive royal suite came to an end we were being shown the private dining room and as the door flung open what was on the itinerary as a quick snack was actually in fact our own privet lunch, in the private dining room of the royal suite, it was such a lovely touch that was arranged and very kind of the four seasons to hosts us. It was the perfect end to the perfect weekend away.

Minimoon in Prague

24 November 2015

What’s a minimoon I hear you say, well it’s for those who want a few days away after a wedding but either don’t have the time off, the money or the weather is not right in their dream destination so they have a few nights away after the wedding and then wait until the time is right for the Honeymoon. For Anthony and I we had two of the above, not enough time off and we needed to save a bit more for spending money. After our special day we did not just want to come home, so the day after our wedding we set off to Prague. I booked BA flights from Heathrow and I’d arranged a car to pick us up on the other side which was all seamless. We arrived at the wonderful Mark Luxury Hotel, from the minute we arrived the staff and service was first class, this was maintained throughout the whole of our stay. Our room was perfect, a great size with a small kitchenette, a living room that lead on to the bedroom which then went on to a bathroom. All very spacious. The hotel it’s self is in the old town and only a 5 minute walk from the Old Town Square and astronomical clock. We literally arrived at the hotel, had some room service and went to bed. I think the day before had finally caught up with us, the next day we woke up and was ready to explore. We started off walking to the Old Square and arrived just in time to see the astronomical clock chime on the hour, we then headed towards Charles Bridge via a few shops. Shopping is great in Prague although Anthony did not seem to keen. Arriving at Charles Bridge and you can see why it is such an attraction, not only with the history and being a pedestrian bridge but also its gothic beauty and views of the city and castle. As we crossed to the other side we went up the high tower and got to see the city at a different angle. The word I used the most that day was beautiful, it just is beautiful, the prettiest city I have been to. We then took to walking all the way to the castle to again look at the views on the way back down we went via a few watering holes and shops. That evening we went to Le Degustation Restaurant which has 1 Michelin Star and it was a wonderful experience, we had the 11 courses with matching wine. Anthony being a chef takes from it very differently than what I do but I had a great meal and got tipsy…hahaha! The next day we had a relaxing morning before a river cruise in the afternoon which was very nice, again we saw the city from a different angle and at a nice slow pace. We took a walk back to the hotel before the Ghost Tour that I was really looking forward to as something a little bit different, I actually got the tour free with my Avios points and was really glad I did because it did not live up to the ghost tour advertised. Firstly when we arrived at the meeting point Anthony and I were the only two booked on the tour and after 40 minutes of a very dull history tour and not one ghost story shared Anthony and I thanked the guide for their time and ducked out of the remanding 2 hours and 20 minute left. We instead finished the evening with a few drinks in a lovely local bar… Now it’s a great story to tell everyone and we laugh about it but I might think twice before booking experiences with Avios again. All in all it was a lovely minimoon/city break and I would recommend it to anyone who wanted a lovely time away be it romantic, historic, shopping or even stag or hen do’s. Prauge itself is very pretty, extremely clean and everyone we met was lovely.

River Cruise - Along the Seine

24 November 2015

I was lucky enough to be invited on a Seine River Cruise with Avalon Waterways to get a feel what river cruising was all about and oh my, did it open my eyes to a wonderful way to travel. This was my itinerary for the next couple of days… Paris Vernon Les Andelys Caudebec for 2 nights Rouen for 1 night The river cruise actually went on but I was only on to get a taste of it and I could easily get a train back from Rouen to Paris to fly home. Firstly if you are a customer of Avalon waterways you will be picked up from your home address and taken to the airport or station of choice and that is already included in the price of your holiday, which I think is a lovely touch. What a way to start your holiday. All went well at the airport and before I knew it we were arriving in Paris where we were meet by a guide who directed us to our transfer that was taking us to a hotel in the Montparnasse area of Paris to meet our fellow cruises before joining our ship. Avalon Waterways offer you as an extra a trip the Eiffel tower while you are waiting to board your ship which I chose to do it was only an extra 39 euros and it was money well spent not only are you taken from the hotel with a guide who explains all that you see on the way to the Eiffel tower you also got fast passed which meant no waiting time this I would highly recommend as I think it was about a 3 hour wait in the normal queues. So that’s another tick off my list of things to do going up the Eiffel tower and I am chuffed to bits I did it. After the tower it was time to make our way to the ship. We were cursing on Avalon’s latest ship the Tapestry II and what a beauty she is. The décor and layout is first class and the rooms are very spacious. You have the choice of a Deluxe stateroom with a window, a Panorama Suite with a full patio door style windows that opens or the Royal suite which has the same views at the Panorama suites but you do get a bigger room among a few other things. From arriving on the ship we had welcome drinks, introductions, time to settle in and look around the ship plus a lovely dinner, another bonus for river cruising it’s a much more relaxed atmosphere and for dinning it’s a smart casual affair, so no need to worry about having to wear black tie on any evening. Two things surprised me when we set off, how it does not feel like you are on a ship as in no motion from the water and secondly the speed the ship travels again without feeling anything. Anyway, beautiful dinner, a few drinks at the bar and then an early night as we had lots to see the next day. Another little thing Avalon Waterways do they included your day trips and you have the choice of two each day, which again I think is a great touch. Arriving in Vernon we had the choice of a visit to Claude Monets house and gardens or an excursion to Chateau de bizy. I picked going to see Monets house and gardens and what a delight it was such a place of beauty and although I arrived on a foggy morning and the lillies were not completely out I fell in love with the place, it really is a magical place not only his house and gardens but also Giverny where the house is located, it really is a must do! That afternoon the sun came out and we docked in Les Andelys a stunning area were you could even take a walking tour, take yourself off or just relax on the ship. I walked up to Chateau Gillard to enjoy the views and take some pictures it was stunning and after a walk around Les Andleys I felt fully relaxed I actually would love to go back and stay around there for a couple of days. That evening I found happy hour in the bar where I enjoyed a glass of bubbles it was a really nice and even when happy hour finished the bar was a very reasonable priced. Next two days we were in Caudebec, on day one the tour option was Abbey Road (Visiting 2 different abbeys) or the Thatched Roof Cottage Road (going to different pretty villages and a town and seeing the pretty thatched cottages that are famed in the area) with if you wanted an extra excursion to Honfleur in the afternoon for an extra cost. That evening before dinner a Landing Beaches Lecture was held to go over the history and locations of each beach that people could see the following day. On day two there was 3 tours you could take if wanted. The American Landing beaches, the UK & Canadian landing Beaches or a taste of Normandy, again all included in the cost. I chose the taste of Normandy as I had never been to the area before this tour touched on so many elements of the area. My last day I woke up in Rouen, a busy place with great history, shopping and sights. I managed to walk around Joan of arc Square and the main shopping area before having to meet my train to Paris luckily I did not have too much time as I think I would of spent a silly amount of money in the shops… I’m still thinking of a top I saw in “naf naf” now. All in all I had a lovely time I think if you wanted to be in the middle of the action of each city, enjoy a cruise with no tides and thousands of people and want a great holiday in an elegant setting with wonderful food then this is for you.

Sandals in St Lucia

24 November 2015

For those who don’t know, us travel agents from time to time get invited on a fam trips (short for familiarisation trips) that is either arranged by a hotel chain or country that want to show us what wonderful things they can offer to our customers. I was lucky enough to get invited by Sandals to see their hotels in St Lucia. So I meet my group of travel agents, on an early October morning at the Virgin Check in desk, Gatwick South terminal and the fun began. While getting the introductions out the way we did all the normal things, Duty free shopping, an early brekkie and spending far too much on maggies for the flight. Flight was on time and service was great and before we knew it we were in Sunny St Lucia and oh my days the wonderful feeling of the warmth hitting our bodies as we walked out on to the steps was beautiful, we’d left a very cold UK. As we were experiencing the Sandals treatment. In St Lucia they have their own private arrival lounge that you get taken too, to wait for your complementary transfer. This has refreshments, sofas and washrooms and air con - a fantastic way to start your holiday. Within minutes the transfer mini bus arrived and we were on our way, the transfer to the 3 resorts is around one & a half hours and you go through the middle of the island so you get to see all the local life as you travel. The island is so luscious and green which is beautiful to see but the roads are a little bumpy to say the least. My accommodation for the coming nights was Sandals Regency La Toc, and on arrival we were greeted with a welcome cocktail and a cool flannel - a treatment that all guest receive. In Sandals they do offer 3 levels of stay; Deluxe, Club Sandal and Butler. So to give you a little idea… Deluxe is your entry level so you check in at reception and within your room you get a fridge with soft drinks. For Club Sandals you get a club lounge that you check in to, your selected soft and alcoholic drinks within your mini bar and room serves from 7am to 10pm. For the butler options, yep you’ve guessed it you get your own butler. With your butler you get checked in within your suite, which will have your pre-selected drinks for the mini bar ready for you and then you can go and enjoy your stay while your butler unpacks your bags. The butlers will provide you with a cell phone so you can reach them when needed. They will take room service orders for breakfast, lunch and dinner or make reservation if needed - even handle your laundry and run you a bath if you wish. Your butler can also reserve your sunbeds and bring you snacks and refreshments anywhere in the resort! I was in a Deluxe room and had a wonderful ocean view from my room, which may I add was beautifully furnished and of a fantastic size. Sandals has pretty much everything covered. In La Toc we had the following… 9 restaurants, beach Bistro, free WiFi, cable TV and films, Red Lane Spa & Fitness centre, nightly entertainment (the street party is great fun!!), indoor games room, snorkelling, sailing, windsurfing, hobby cats & kayaks, sauna, whirlpool steam rooms, 3 swimming pools, swim up bars, tennis courts, table tennis, basketball, lawn chess, playmakers (entertainment team) a piano bar and late night buffets. There's also the "Stay at One, Play at Another" scheme, so if none of the above is enough for you, you can go to the other two hotels and use all their facilities too! The beauty is that all of this is included in the price you pay. Although it also sounds like a lot going on, they do have quiet pools and no one is expected to do anything, so it is extremely laid back. The staff are amazing and cannot do enough for you and another thing just to add Sandals is a couples only hotel so no kiddies anywhere. Sandals Regency La Toc is a large spread out resort and is on many levels and when I stayed it was pretty full but not at any time would I say that it felt it. The beach is a little choppy here, so I would not say if you are a beach lover this is for you but it is the only resort on the island with a 9 hole golf course. Sandals Halcyon Beach is the smallest of the 3 resorts in St Lucia and has a wonderfully chilled vibe to it much more intimate and it sits on a 2 mile stretch of beach. If you are looking for the great service of Sandals, but at a slightly slower pace of life, this is the place for you. Sandals Grande St. Lucian is the perfect place for all beach lovers. The beach is on the Caribbean Sea, and with wonderful views over Rodney Bay, the sea is so calm it’s like jumping in a bath. There are lots of different style room option to choose from and again all the wonders and style that Sandals have to offer. So the biggest question is… When are you going??

London Calling for a big celebration!!

28 October 2013

My sister, my Gran and I wanted to give my mum a 60th birthday present that she would never forget so we picked a show and a night in London with a few extras too and she loved it. The 3 of us picked an early show dinner at the Ivy, which is a wonderful venue that has a classic décor and service with a great menu to match anyone’s needs. This was only a very short walk to the theatre where we took our seats for The Jersey boys- a great show that is about the story of Frankie Vali and the four seasons, it will have you singing all the way through the show. That evening we found a bar in the West End before a nightcap in our hotel. The next day the family got up and had breakfast together before getting changed in our Sunday best (it was actually a Friday but you know what I mean) as at 3pm we had a table booked at The Ritz for Afternoon tea. Once we checked out of the hotel we decided to walk to the Ritz, which actually was not far at all but we planned it that we went via Covent garden and Leicester square and all the little streets between. It was so lovely walking and taking in London. When we arrived at the Ritz I was so impressed, it was just like something out of the movies with all the front of house staff greeting you and helping you with your bags before being seated. We had arranged for the champagne celebrations package. So we started with a glass of champagne while our Tea order was taken, so much tea to choose from and then what followed was a wonderful selection of sandwiches and cakes. I highly recommend the Ritz for that very special occasion to spoil someone. My Mum was taken aback by her 60th birthday present and the whole family had a wonderful time. Although we fitted a lot in to our night in the Big Smoke I can’t wait to go back and explore more. London has so much to offer and is just on our door step.

A leaving do in Mexico

23 October 2013

I know how lucky was I to have this invitation and all I had to do was pay for my flight as my friend had a spare room. My friend Charlotte who had sent the invite, was one of the girls I had worked and lived with in Zante and Andorra and while most of us reps gave up after two or three years Charlotte made it overseas for 10 years and actually end up as a health and safety officer for a UK tour operator. But after 10 years and too many airports she was ready to come home but invited me and Lisa to help her celebrate. So off I went from London on the 10 hour flight to find Charlotte waiting for me with a smile at the other end. Lisa was to arrive on Saturday from America so I had two days of trying to get over my jet lag and chilling on the beach before the party started. Charlotte’s apartment is in Playa del Carmen which is a fantastic resort that has everything to offer. It has a relaxed feel to the resort and has a big choice of the type of accommodation you can stay in from apartments on the beach to small hotels and the big all inclusive. The beach is fantastic and so are all the beach clubs. If you normally get a few drinks or lunch you have free sun beds and service all day. There are lots of shops, bars and restaurants to pick from a little bar strip and also one of the two famous coco bongos (the other is in Cancun) which is a must see. I can honestly say that the Cancun gateway of Mexico has everything that you could possibly want for out of a holiday. From history of Tulum to the turtle swim in Akumal and the whale shark swim out at sea or the dolphin swim at one of the parks. There are also lots of actives to try like zip wires over tree tops. Above all, the beaches are beautiful and so are the people as they cannot do enough for you. I fitted so much into my week and to most of them I have mentioned a night out at coco bongos which is the club that ‘The Mask’ was filmed in. I visited the ancient site of Tulum, swam with the dolphins, went to different beaches and beach clubs and even had a night in Cancun which again was fantastic. It’s a very different resort to Playa as it’s much busier and has a lot more hotels to choose from. Again, the beach is fab, the service is great and you can get a great night out. I would say it does have more of an American holiday feel to the area with the layout, food joints and shopping mall options. But the good thing about the area is that it will have a resort for you to stay in that will match what you want out of a holiday. My friends and I had the best time and it so far is the best leaving do I have been to!

A Wedding, fun in the sun and a truly majestic sunset.

24 November 2015

I always feel home from home in Greece, especially since living in Zante and Cyprus so I was delighted to be invited to my friends' wedding. I only spent 4 nights on the island of Santorini but it felt like a lot longer. On arriving into the small terminal I was instantly in love with the place. The wedding party was based in Kamari, which was a short drive from the airport. The apartments we had picked were in a fantastic location on the beach front. It was a very typical Greek accommodation, basic with Air-Con and the staff were very friendly. The most action of Kamiri happens on the beach front with lovely bars (nothing rowdy at all) and restaurants, which all look out over the beach to the sea. The beach itself is pebbles but with board walks its so easy to get about. A truly perfect base to see the island. The island itself is small and takes no real time to get around. I used the local bus to get to the main town of Fira, which is great for shopping, the wonderful views of the Caldera and seeing the donkey trek coming up from sea level. As this is the main town it is a hive of activity both day and night. This is also the only bus terminal on the island to get to all of the other resorts, on another occasion I travelled from Kamari, changed at Fira to travel on to Oia. Wow Oia, what a place! I have never seen such a beautiful sunset over such a pretty town. Oia is the place where all the Greek adverts are filmed, small streets, white wash homes and blue dome church roofs, all built into the cliffs. It’s truly beautiful and if you cannot tell already I fell in love with the place, all within the time it took to have dinner and watch the sunset. We had a wonderful dinner in a roof top bar, it was a perfect location. The main reason I went to Santorini was to see my friends marry, which I actually arranged for them. They selected the Santos Winery at Sunset, this has fantastic sea views that overlooked the Cauldra and on to Fira. We then had the reception at Plagos, which when the sun goes down you have a magical view of the lights of the island that twinkle in the distance. It is a perfect wedding venue. All in all and I am sure you can tell I loved Santorini and will definitely be going back!

Sorrento - A truly romantic place, with elegancy, breath taking scenery, culture and history oozing

08 July 2013

Like so many of my holiday spots Sorrento picked me instead of me picking it. I had a call one grey and gloomy February from a dear school friend asking me to be her bridesmaid, little did I know through an excited yes that she would then add… and I am looking to get married in Italy. Now if I am truly honest at the time I had the normal dread of getting in the dress. But I soon got over that and in to the dress and arrived a few days before the wedding at a cute old fashioned airport in Naples, ready to set off on the hour and a half transfer to Sorrento. The journey in itself was great as I got to take in so many sights on the way. I already knew it would be a busy week as I wanted to do and see so much and all had to fit around the Wedding. My itinerary went like this… Arrival day: meet my family and wedding party Pool day and Sorrento Herculaneum and Pompeii Amalfi coast Wedding Day Capri Pool day and Shopping in Sorrento Home Now as you can see this was a full-on nonstop week and if I am honest I only got a taste of everything that I mentioned apart from the wedding of course. Sorrento is a great place to use as a base with plenty to do within the town and some lovely shop cafes, bar and restaurants. I used to love going to the Piazza Tasso to grab a coffee and watch the world go by. All the buildings are so interesting and pretty and the small streets are similar to the lanes in Brighton and are great for shopping. I stayed in a hotel called the Bristol which was in an elevated position on the way out of Sorrento. It was only 10 minutes to the main square and the train station but it was lovely to have the walk and the views from my balcony were the main selling point. I could see Sorrento, the bay of Naples and Mount Vesuvius and with each hour that passed the scene in front of me changed - when the night came in and the lights went up it all looked so magical. I felt when I was in Sorrento that nothing had changed for a long time, everyone I met was extremely welcoming and you could still see the traditional Italian values as everywhere was very family, food and fashion focused. Herculaneum and Pompeii are both totally mind blowing. The details that have been persevered in Herculaneum which was an ancient Roman town destroyed by a volcano eruption and the actual size of Pompeii and what can still be seen is amazing. Out of the two sites it is much easier to take in Herculaneum in one day as it is almost the size of the entrance of Pompeii, but the views and history cannot be missed. I just selected the main things I wanted to see as again I was on a whistle stop tour and one of my many excuses to be able to go back. The good thing about both of these places is that from Sorrento you can get the train and can take your own time to fully discover both places. Amalfi Coast is a natural roller coaster and not for the faint hearted. Well it’s not actually that bad, I just felt like I needed a bit of drama in my write up…ha ha! I went from Sorrento to Positaino (my favourite place of all that I visited along the coast) by bus and depending on where you get the bus depends on if you get a seat as it is the cheapest way of getting to each town. I found the views and winding roads amazing and loved every minute of it. When we arrived in Positinao we got off at the first stop and had a long walk down towards the pedestrian and tourist area. With the walk we saw the houses and hotels and again the ever changing views of this pretty place. On arriving in the tourist area you are hit with the scent of wonderful flowers and in some areas they have covered walkways offering protection from the sun, just lovely! While walking we passed the shops on our way to the beach and you are reminded how chic the area is. The only note I would add is that it is not really for anyone with walking difficulties. After a drink on the beach we then took a taxi to Amalfi. Almalfi is a busier town so it had more of a lively feel to it with more shopping, great views and a great square at the bottom of the grand Almafi church steps which is a lovely place to stop for a late lunch before heading on. Capri Island is only a short boat crossing away from Sorrento’s port. It was great to say that I had been over to Capri but I found it very touristy and it was the only place where I was pressured by people wanting me to buy what they had to offer. Luckily, once you got to the main town where the famous shops and hotels are it was more like the Italy I had got to love in the last week. If you want to shop though you will need a serious budget as it is a designer haven. It was a very busy week for me, as I wanted to do as much as I could with my time but I really enjoyed every minute and I will add that there is still so much to see and do. I did truly fall in love with Sorrento and the Amalfi coast and would say it is a place you definitely need to visit at least once.

Delightful Dubai

19 February 2015

If you want the best of anything and everything then you need to go to Dubai… luxury, shopping, service, weather, entertainment and all within a short flight. Me and my sister actually went to Dubai for only 3 nights but packed so much in and felt totally relaxed at the same time. We flew over night from Heathrow had a car waiting for us and was taken straight to our hotel, The Shangri La. We drop our bags before jumping on the hop on hop off tour bus. So we could bother get a complete feel of the city. As it’s a man-made playground you will not have much history to take on but you can get a feel of what to see and where to go. On return to our hotel we relaxed before dinner and an early ish night. The Shangri La hotel is a wonderful hotel and the chain of hotels are actually one of my favourite. They have outstanding service and style and nothing is missed. The next morning before it got too hot we enjoyed the services and facilities of pool and spa area and when the midday sun hit we went over to the Dubai Mall which the Shangri La Hotel is in a perfect location for. You can get every type of shop in the Mall from designer to rug shops, food outlets are the same from designer to fast food and entertainment… Ice rinks to aquariums and to top it all a fountain show to match what you would see in Vegas. The following day we went to the Atlantis Waterpark on the palm and yes, I did the Kamikaze waterslide that takes you through the shake pool, whether I enjoyed it is another thing. It was a great waterpark with a lazy river, great slides and a nice beach to chill on if the Kamikaze is not for you. We took the monorail to the palm and then a bus and for a slightly quicker return we got a taxi which was all very easy. After another great night’s sleep in our beautifully decorated room we then had another day by the pool before an afternoon pick up for the 4x4 desert experience and then evening entertainment. Great to be flung around the sand dunes while the sunsets and I would recommend it to anyone although I will warn it’s a very bumpy ride. Once the sun set we were taken for a middle eastern middle with local entertainment - all in all another wonderful day spent in Dubai. Then we came to our final day and flight home which had a bit more pool action, final shopping in another mall with a ski slope in it and then a very short transfer to the airport. I was a little unsure about what I would think about Dubai before I went but it’s another destination I love, would go back anytime be in for another short break or for much longer as I really only scratched the surface.

Costa Del Sol

29 July 2011

I went out to the Costa del Sol for a family friends 50th birthday and never having been before I was a little unsure what to expect. I had arranged to have our car collected at the terminal, as it was a family holiday and less hassle - I don’t have children but my parents were coming and can I imagine it will be about on par! As we pulled up a very help for man from the meet & greet company was waiting to take our car once our cases were in hand…a very successful stage 1! Now to check in, the 11 of us travelled on Easyjet as it was a short flight to Malaga, I had already pre booked us in online so it was a breeze after our short flight the fun began! Each family had hired a car as we were about 40 minutes away from the airport and while we were in the area we were going to have a look around; I was our designated driver (not sure how that happened). I was happy to know that before we had left home our sat nav was upgrade to Europe and after a few moments of entering the address we were on our way and a short 40 minutes later we were at the apartments! I wish I could say the same for the other 2 cars who had told me they knew where they were going! The last across the finish line had been MIA for over 2 hours and had nearly ended up in Gibraltar –a sat nav is always a good thing to take or hire when driving overseas! The majority of the holiday was intended to be spent relaxing around the pool, which we did do. Around the Marbella area, there are a variety of activities including a water park in Fuengirola that’s not too far away and also the cable cars, where you have a fantastic view of the whole of the coast. The beaches are some of the best in Spain and for any golfers there are some of the best courses in Europe. If you are looking for a more traditional Spanish holiday then Torremolinos, Benalmadena and Fuengirola would not be for you although all very good for nights out. However, there are a lot of other areas to choose from. Along the whole of the coast there is a variety of accommodation to choose from, ranging from apartments, 3 to 5 star hotels and villas with their own private pools. There are a number of restaurants and something to suit everyone from authentic Spanish Paella in a beach restaurant washed down with a jug of Sangria or much more up market international style restaurants. The things I enjoyed doing when I was in the costa del sol was visiting Gibraltar, it isn’t that far away (probably about an hour/hour & a half) and is great for sightseeing, duty free shopping and taking long leisurely lunches in the town while doing a spot of people watching! I have an image ingrained in my mind of my sister’s face when we stepped out of the cable car at the top of the rock and a monkey jumped on, still makes me laugh now! Another great place for people watching or to see and be seen is Puerto Banus – my word there are some fantastic yachts and cars to see there. Beware of the prices though as they are hiked up for the privilege. All in all it was a great weeks family fun holiday where we all relaxed, discovered the area and laughed a lot!

I LOVE THAILAND

17 April 2015

I love Thailand, I love Thailand. Have I ever told you I love Thailand! I’m actually not sure how to start this, as I want to tell you everything all at once. Thailand has everything to offer for every type of traveller, it is luxurious, peaceful, hectic, cultural, historical, respectful, crazy, scenic and much more. My Thailand experience was what we travel agents call a multicentre with a stay in Bangkok, Chiang Mai and Phuket. For Bangkok we crammed in so much in our 2 full days in the city… Grand Palace, reclining Buddha, floating market, street shopping, night markets, Bangkok nightlife and fantastic meals out, plus a luxury city hotel with a great spa to get over the flight. It was just the right amount of time to spend in the busy city to see all the major sights especially if you are trying to pack lots in. We chose Chiang Mai so we could go and see the Elephants and it was so worth it and probably one of the best days of my life. We went in to the jungle to spend the day interacting with them, it was just magical. Chiang Mai is a welcome change from the busy city of Bangkok as it has a much more relaxed way of life. I went to an amazing Thai spa and had my first ever Thai massage (that’s an experience if you have never had one before) on our first night we found some great bars that are plotted around a Thai boxing ring and watched a few local fights. Then to top off the night we wondered back to our hotel via the night markets. For the other night we went to a Traditional Thai evening of food, dance and local entertainment it was so nice to see the older tradition still very much alive in Chiang Mai. After all the shopping, sightseeing and experiences we planned our last place to be Phuket for the beach and totally chill out. I chose a fantastic hotel just off the beach which was close enough to all that Patong has to offer but far enough away that we could just relax if we wanted too. As a must do we went over to Phi Phi (where the beach was filmed) for a day on a boat trip and the beaches that we went to were idyllic…I’m making myself jealous just thinking of them. I really don’t feel like I have given Thailand enough justice in my blog and I guess that is because words will never in my eyes give you all the beauty that the country holds. It’s one of those places that you just have to go and see, it really has so much to offer.

The Island of love - Cyprus

20 February 2013

My final stint as a Rep landed me in Cyprus - "The Island of Love", famed for being the birth place of Aphrodite, the goddess of love. I loved working and living in Cyprus and it felt very much like home from home, just with better weather and great beaches to go with it. I was given a car to get around as I was to cover Paphos and Pissouri on the west of the island. The great thing with Cyprus and having a car is that we both drive on the same side so there was no confusion once getting behind the wheel and the roads and signs are very easy to follow. Cyprus as an island is steeped in a huge amount of history. What with Greek mythology and the island divide between the Greek Cypriots in the south and the Turkish Cypriots in the north and the Capital Nicosia being divided. When I went to the city you could see the area that had not been crossed in 30 years where time had stood still, it is so interesting to see how the city carried on working up to a line. Not only did you have the interest on the political side but also the stories from the families that had lost. Along with its history you have the diverse landscapes from the golden beaches in the east to the mountain ranges in the west, which at certain times of ear you can ski in. For those for whom the idea of any of the above is like hell on holiday and all you want to do is enjoy sun, sea and water sports with great food and welcoming people then you'll have a ball too. Cyprus really is the island that offers everything. For places to stay you have a resort for everyone from the crazy party place of Ayia Napa to the family and couples who like a busier resorts of Protaras and Paphos. There are also the rural and peaceful areas like Polis, Latchi and Pissouri. I do feel some parts of the island are more commercial than other Greek Islands and you will find the accommodation of a high standard. Another great thing is that it is a top destination for getting married and you can choose all different locations from hotel grounds, churches or the town halls and what with a great selections of accommodation it can accommodate anyone budget. I loved Cyprus the whole time I was there and would go back in a flash for a good all round type of holiday.

Andorra - the first time skiing & my second season repping

02 December 2012

I landed with a few bumps into Andorra, none of them bad of course; it’s just what happens when you are learning to ski. I can honestly say Andorra was my best season overseas. The whole four months was full of fun and that is what you get when you go on a ski holiday. There is such a passion with this type of holiday that even if you cannot ski the Après will certainly keep you occupied. Little Andorra is a principality between France and Spain sitting in the mountain range of the Pyrenees and although it is tiny it has a lot to offer. I myself was based in the lively resort of Pas de la Casa. It has been known as San Ann on Snow and what it lacks in beauty, it certainly makes up for in Après. Pas (for short) is a north facing resort sitting over 2000m above sea level. It is close to the French boarder so the food is fantastic and it has 205km of pistes as it is part of the Grandvalira ski pass which includes Pas de la Casa, Grau Roig, Soldeu, El Tarter, Canillo and Encamp. The area completely covers all abilities and I myself learnt to ski here so I can recommend it to anyone and the same if you are a boarder. There are also husky rides, Skadoo’s, igloos and out in the wild training/ If all of this sounds like a bit too much like hard work, you can try out the duty free shopping in Andorra Le Vella or check yourself into the spa of Caldea. I think, depending on the resort, this is a great place for anyone from first timer skiers to fun family holidays and with the bonus of not having some of the expense of the popular running European resorts.

Zakynthos - My first season as a rep!

29 July 2011

As I mention in my ‘about me’ I was lucky enough to be a holiday rep for a few seasons. My first season was spent in Zakynthos and this was also my first time visiting Greece. At the time I travelled out, we had to fly in to Athens and then travel across the mainland to Kilini via the Corinth canal to meet a ferry, as there were no flights direct to Zakynthos in the winter season, and I was arriving in at the end of March to open the resort. I arrived in to a very wet and cold Zakynthos town a bit of a shock for the 20 years I was and the fact that I had not packed any warm clothes, why would I need to? I was living in Greece! Zakynthos as a place also does not have pavements and when I arrived it hardly had roads. I was amazed how quickly they were turned into roads in time for the tourists, you may laugh when you think of the time you saw that massive pot hole going around a resort, but trust me they are roads compared to what I saw when I first arrived! Living arrangements can be simple in Zakynthos, you will find if you are self catering you will have a hob, fridge and sink and that is just about it, but with some fantastic fresh fish restaurants you'd never need to stay in and try and cook! Also some properties may not have swimming pools but you will normally find that if they don't they are just a stone’s throw from the beach or share with an accommodation close by. I had roughly two weeks learning the island and how to be a representative! Then I was let loose with airports greetings, transfers speeches and welcome meetings. I was extremely lucky to be placed in the resort of Tsilivi on Zante (the islands other name), which is about 20 minutes from the airport and has a great mixture for all ages and tastes. Great beaches, taverns and welcoming locals and not a fast food chain in sight, perfect! The resort runs along a beach and can give you as much or as little as you want in to actives and nightlife. Zakythos as an island has something to suit most tastes and has a lot of things to do and see as it is in a prime location to travel around. The resorts pace of life varies from place to place; you have the clubbing heights of Laganas, which is still one of the top partying resorts in Europe to the idyllic area of Vasilikos, with some of the most peaceful beaches I have ever been on where you get a real feel of being away from it all. You could even stay in Kalamaki and share the beach with the Loggerhead turtles at this nesting site. Zante is known for the iconic photograph of a beach, which features a shipwreck strewn across the white sands, framed by the turquoise sea. You can see this by boat or from the cliff above and both are a must in my eyes. Tie that in with a trip to Zante town to look at the church were the patron saint of the island St Dionysios lies or have lunch at Keri to see the far reaching views or board another boat to the blue caves where you can snap some fantastic holiday pictures! To go further afield you could pop over to Kefalonia for the day as it’s a neighbouring island, which can be seen from Alykes. Or even go on to the main land and visit Olympus the birth place of the Olympic Games. Climb the acropolis in Athens and learn all about the Greek Gods while taking in the spectacular views across the city. I have very fond memories of Zakythos and personally think it ticks all the boxes in a fantastic holiday. If it sounds like the perfect place for you, ring me and I’ll tell you more!

My customer stories

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Laura Skeats is without a doubt the best Travel Councillor we have used. Went above and beyond to help find us the best place to stay. She was able to answer all the questions I had (I had a LOT) and we are definitely using her again. Definitely highly recommended to others.

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Laura is absolutely great, super helpful and makes travelling with work stress free!

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Fabulous and friendly service. Laura always goes beyond your expectations, thank you

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Knowledgeable and helpful - as ever.

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We’ve known Laura for many years and this is not the first trip we’ve booked with her; she’s always there for us and understands our holiday requirements. She makes us feel like we’re the only people she works with.

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I've always come back to Laura, time after time. She is super friendly, reliable and trustworthy. Would definitely recommend!

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Laura is consistently quick and professional with finding optimal travel arrangements for my needs. It is always a pleasure to have her assistance in booking my travel. I would easily recommend her to my friends and colleagues.

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Excellent, professional and timely response

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Our Travel Counsellor, Laura, always gives us great advice, she has taken time to get to know us and has always booked holidays for us that have been just what we expected and have been relaxing and worry free. Will continue to use Laura for all our future holiday needs

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Laura has been amazing as always, giving that real personal touch and finding us the perfect holiday.

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Laura is so knowledgeable and I always trust her opinion and advice whenever I book with her. She goes above and beyond every trip we book. Laura is always professional, approachable and personable. I think she is fantastic at her job and wouldn’t go any where else.

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Laura always goes the extra mile to make sure our holiday travel arrangements meet our needs and goes out of her way to make herself available around our work commitments which is greatly appreciated. I have already recommended her to a friend this week!

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Excellent personal service taking into account all circumstances to ensure holiday needs are met. Thank you.

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We wanted a trip to Canada which included my daughter's wedding, as well as some touring and sight seeing but didn't feel confident in arranging it ourselves so we contacted Laura who took up the challenge and came back to us with a great package that included all the things we wanted to do. We received a full itinerary that contained vouchers and tickets for everything we had booked including car hire, ferries and trips. We followed the itinerary daily and everything ran very smoothly just as it should. We now recommend Laura to all our friends and won't hesitate to call on her again.

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Laura provided an exceptional service not just booking the holiday to my requested expectations but followed through even after we had left. Checking we were satisfied with everything every step of the way. We would use Laura again in the future & have already recommended her service to friends & family.

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Thank you Laura for helping us to plan the perfect Honeymoon! Your patience and fast response with all of our many queries was fantastic. The hotels you booked for us were perfect for what we wanted and needed, and all flights and transfers were great. We have already recommended you to friends and family, and will be sure to come to you again for our next special holiday.

Sent by Jamie Thorp

Laura is always amazing and we trust her with all out more complex travel and holiday needs. I often recommend others to use her, she really is brilliant!

Sent by Paul Franklin

Laura consistently delivers to a very high standard. She has a knack of finding the right holiday. She is always very helpful and friendly. I always recommend her to friends and family.

Sent by Anna Tranter

Laura took the time to talk to me about our request and then even more time running back and forth to gather the correct quotes. We took our time to make a decision with lots of changes on the way but she was always friendly and patient.

Sent by Laura Carling

Laura was excellent in tailoring our dream holiday for us. She was always on hand to discuss ideas and hotels, resorts etc. with an exceptionally wide knowledge of Thailand. We will definitely be back to book again with her.

Sent by Hannah cOX

Laura was absolutely amazing when helping us organise our honeymoon. She was so patient, and really listened to everything we wanted and didnt want. She has found us the most perfect honeymoon and we couldnt be happier! Thank you so much Laura!

Sent by Alison Watkins-Nash

We had a wonderful honeymoon that you arranged for us. Our first cruise adventure was a memorable one, the hotel ideally situated and all the transfers ran smoothly. The whole 'Travel Counsellor' service I would thoroughly recommend and will certainly consider using again. Thank you for the time you put in to making our honeymoon so special.

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Laura was friendly, knowledgeable and very efficient at dealing with our search. We won't hesitate to book with her again or indeed to recommend Laura to our friend and family. Thank you Laura!

Sent by Victor Gamboa

Laura is awesome! I had a problem a problem with a travel agency online and had to book all my flights on last minute! She found very good fares and perfect timing - my traveling schedule was perfect because of her help!

Sent by Alison Watkins-Nash

Laura was great. She went above and beyond the call of duty for us to arrange our honeymoon. A friend of mine is already in the process of using her services and booking a holiday for Christmas.

Sent by Michele Lodge

Laura just takes all the hassle away. We haven't got the time (or patience) to trawl the internet. Laura knows what we like and sorts everything brilliantly. We even got upgraded to a junior suite on our recent trip to Sorrento - no idea how she managed that one! We have already booked our next holiday to Sicily through Laura, so thank you once again for all your help.

Sent by Melvyn Kirtley

Due to the excellent service always provided by Laura, we have passed her name on to several other people.

Sent by Vivienne Burton

Had a great holiday that catered for all of us with different ideas of a holiday! I hate trying to find holidays when there are so many different considerations to account for so it was great not to have the hassle. All went very smoothly and bonus was we didn't have any time consuming rep meetings. I will definitely use Laura again.

Sent by Nigel Williams

Laura provides a wonderful travel service. She is knowledgeable, helpful and extremely reliable. I had some quite specific requirements and not a lot of time to get the holiday booked, but Laura breezed through the arrangements. I can wholeheartedly recommend booking a holiday through her.

Sent by Shelley Hopper

Laura has recently booked a long weekend in Paris for me. Her service was great and without her help, I know I wouldn't have booked the trip which I was planning as a surprise for my husband. Nothing was too much trouble, and I had plenty to choose from and all at a great price! We had a fantastic weekend away and I can honestly say it was all thanks to Laura. I would definitely recommend Laura if you need help and advice in booking your travel! Thank you Laura!

Sent by marika percival

Laura always does a fantastic job of finding the perfect holiday for us. All I have to do is phone or email her with where we would like to go and she comes up trumps within the same day, it takes all the stress out of it for me and peace of mind that if anything happens we will always have Laura at the end of the phone to sort things out. Not that we ever have had to do that because it is always planed perfectly! We are always recommending her to people, and will definitely be booking with Laura again.

Sent by Nigel Barrett

Just got back from a weeks break yesterday. My wife and I have been using Laura as our travel organiser now for our last four holidays. We have found her knowledge and travel experience a great help and she now knows what our likes and dislikes are. This has been built up over the years and she has given us 100% + every time. We would not hesitate in recommend her to anyone.

Sent by Nicola Pidduck

I have now used Laura to book two holidays for me and my family and the service has been great. I'm not one for making up my mind easily and have changed my mind on many occasions and Laura has always been happy to help and always gives me plenty to choose from.

Sent by LORRAINE FORD

This is the second time that Laura has booked a weekend trip to London for us. She was extremely helpful, especially when the hotel we required was not available. She went out of her way to get us into this hotel which was much appreciated. All the personal touches that come from Laura are much appreciated, such as handwritten cards through the post. I will certainly contact her again as and when holiday services are required.

Sent by Linda Brewis

Thanks to Laura I was able to go to Australia for my aunt's funeral. She worked very hard to find suitable flights - no easy feat with only days notice.

Sent by Jill Cable

When I travel indepentantly I always rely on Laura to find me the best flight for my needs. I could do it myself on the Internet, but I feel very reassured that Laura has my best interests at heart. She provides a very personal service and I feel reassured to leave things to her.

Sent by James Tadman

Where to start...Laura is brilliant! She's extremely knowledgeable, passionate, conscientious, and efficient in the service she provides, no stone is left unturned and she ensures, as much as she can that your holiday will start and end exactly as planned, the bit in the middle is up to you - although I'm sure Laura can also help to sort that to!! I will definitely be using Laura for all my flights and holidays in the future

Sent by Lucy Jennings

Laura has been fantastic at organising many of our holidays and has always got it spot on. An especially tricky one was organising our flights to and from Thailand where we both travelled different dates, different airlines and via different countries! For Laura nothing is too much trouble and she is great at understanding exactly what you need. Thoroughly recommend her and will continue using her for all future holidays.

Sent by Franky Marulanda

I have been asking Laura to take care of our travel arrangements for the last 3 years and she has been amazing, all the little details are taken care of, from various pricing, timetable, airlines and hotels. Better still, she has even driven the tickets and all bits and pieces over to my home to ensure a service with a smile. She has always been fantastic and I would not dream go anywhere else, as teh service Laura provides is the best there is. FM

Sent by Janine Saxton

Laura researched the type of holiday we were after and the area where we wanted to stay thoroughly and gave us a number of flight and accommodation choices. She responded to late requests for information and booking of airport parking quickly. We had a wonderful break in Soller thanks to her!

Sent by Jill Cable

Excellent communication and very prompt at instigating travel arrangements. Would definitely use her again and have already recommended her to friends!

Sent by Les Deabill

We have used Laura for some very diverse holidays and breaks from Caribbean Cruises to weekends in Butlins and always found her to be very professional. Nothing is too much trouble and all our requirements are met with a smile and a 'let’s see what we can do'. We have been more than satisfied with her service and would recommend her to anyone; we have already done this on numerous occasions. We are now contemplating next year’s break with Laura as she has already arranged this year’s holiday to Cyprus for us and a number of friends in October. Thoroughly satisfied as a customer, not words you hear very much these days in service industries but l cannot speak more highly of Laura.

Sent by Maureen Horne

Laura helped me a great deal trying to sort our family holiday, which was for a group of us - 9 adults 2 children and a baby! This meant quite a lot of communction between us both and Laura was spot on and found us the perfect holiday, she even brought the tickets round to my house and she had written out all the luggage labels which I hate doing. All in all Laura couldnt do enough to help, will certainly be using her again in the future. Many thanks.

Sent by Holly Sitch

Laura took all the stress out of organising our recent trip to Costa Rica, everything ran super smoothly. I would have no hesitation in recommending Laura's services and we will definitely be booking through Laura again.

Sent by Paul Franklin

Laura always gives the personal touch and lets you feel that nothing is too much trouble. Her research is meticulous and she always finds the right holiday. I have no hesitation in recommending her to friends and family. Having booked the holiday she is always there for advice and takes away those last minute stresses and panics.

Sent by Claire Alexander

I booked a surprise weekend away for my partner for Valentines, Laura was fantastic, she sorted every little detail to ensure that we both had an amazing weekend. Laura is personable and very kind. Laura sent us a little card to thank us for booking with her which really added to the great service we received, I would have no hesitation in recommending her services, and we will book through Laura again, she’s a star!

Sent by Lisa Mould

Thank you Laura for booking us a fantastic Christmas Skiing Holiday in Finland. Your help beforehand sorting out the Husky Safari and Ski equipment was invaluable, so much so we have got you to book our Ski holiday again for 2011!

Sent by Sheelagh Lewis

Laura definitely took the stress out of booking a holiday for me. It's very hard to know which internet sites/companies to trust when you're booking hotels, flights etc separately. So, it was very nice to know, if there was to be any problems, Laura would be at the other end of the phone to sort it. She booked the hotel, taxi and flight in super quick time and had tickets delivered within a couple of days of my initial contact with her. Everything went as planned without a hitch so I couldn’t have asked for anything more. Thanks Laura, will be back next year! Sheelagh

Sent by Becky Langford

We were so grateful for Laura's help and advice on booking our holiday to Jamaica, it was fab and couldn't have asked for anything else. Laura managed to find a hotel that suited all of our requirements (wasn't sure that was possible!!!) and spent a lot of time and effort into finding our perfect holiday. We were so pleased with Laura's service we have already booked with her again for next year.

Sent by Philip Sherriff

The recent short break organised for us by Laura was exellent from the initial introductionary phone call to the 'welcome home' postcard when we arrived back was first class. The presentation of the holiday and travel details were most professional and I would have no hesitation in recommending her to anyone. I will be using her again without doubt. Thanks Laura and good luck. Philip and Jen