Sent by Jacques Fourie
Based in Benoni
Looking for help with your business travel? Find out how I can help here
I was born into a family who loves travelling and was fortunate to have experienced our beautiful country’s icons and hidden gems. One of my first “international travel” memories was of watching my uncle’s slide show of their adventurous trip to South America.
After school I became an au-pair and lived for 10 months in Germany. It was here that my love for travel was born and I fell in love with Europe. I then enrolled at the University of Pretoria and obtained a B.Com degree in Tourism Management. I recently completed a Diploma in Sales Management from Varsity College as well as a Programme in Advanced Marketing Management from UNISA Centre for Business Management.
My career started in 2000: I started at a tour operator specialising in Spain and Portugal. I then moved on to a retail travel agency where I gained a lot of extensive experience. I later joined an international tour operator, selling and promoting escorted tours to Europe, the Mediterranean and the Americas. I gained in-depth knowledge of various countries and visited many destinations.
Some of my travel memories include: enjoying the beaches of the Algarve, shopping in the Grand Bazaar in Istanbul, experiencing Eastern European cultures, cruising in the Greek Isles, driving in the Black Forest and taking a rail journey up the Swiss Mountain peaks, enjoying Austrian music and entertainment and sampling French cuisine, marvelling at the ancient wonders in Egypt and enjoying la Dolce Vita in Italy! Experiencing the night-life in London and Amsterdam and climbing Sydney Harbour Bridge.
My 10 years experience in the industry and my passion for what I do motivated me to start my own travel business. As a Travel Counsellor I can offer the best prices and highest service levels thanks to the newest technology and great support from a dynamic global company, plus I am available at a time that suits you.
As I enjoy seamless, perfectly planned holidays when I travel - I will always aim to provide this to my clients with whom I build long-term relationships. Extensive planning and careful consideration of various options - like travel routings, airlines, hotels, tours and transportation, all collaborate to create the perfect dream holiday.
Holidays are dreams waiting to be realised. So carpe diem - Seize the day! Make that travel enquiry and allow me to make your dream come true!
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.
07 August 2012
Whether you are a first time visitor to Mauritius, or a regular, the Sun Resorts marketed by World Leisure Holidays will welcome you to this island paradise as no other hotel group can. I was fortunate to spend 6 days in Mauritius during July 2012 and stayed 1 night at each of these properties, to enjoy what each hotel had to offer and to realise how different each property is in terms of style, location and ambience. La Pirogue (4 Star) is a famous landmark on Mauritius and has been open for 36 years; its 20% repeat clientele proves its popularity. Its location on the West Coast makes it the perfect honeymoon and wedding spot with romantic sunsets awaiting you. The bungalows situated in the massive garden with over 1000 coconut palm trees create a relaxed “fishing village” ambience. Next to La Pirogue is the ever popular Sugar Beach (5 Star) with its contemporary La Plantation style architecture and formal gardens. This hotel is popular amongst families and for group and incentive travel purposes. It is also ideal for couples, especially for those wanting peace and quiet – the south villas with the quiet pool will be a favourite retreat. At Sugar Beach and La Pirogue guests have a choice of 5 restaurants, 3 bars and 3 pools and they share the beautiful Aura Spa, and sports centre. The recently opened Long Beach (5 Star) on the East Coast is the most innovative and eco-friendly hotel currently on the island. It boasts various features to keep energy usage low and to conserve the environment, such as higher ceilings and motion sensors to activate or deactivate lights and air-conditioning. Life at Long Beach revolves around a central piazza with 4 restaurants and a bar flanking it as well as the conference centre. Another poolside restaurant and bar offers relaxed dining. Cuisine offered at this resort is varied from Chinese, Japanese, Italian, seafood and off-course international buffets with live-cooking stations. A bonus at this resort is that all rooms, even the standard rooms have stunning sea views with private terraces or balconies. You may want to relax on the widest and longest stretch of beach of any Mauritian resort offering each room 109m² of beach space. The prestigious and elegant One&Only Le Saint Geran (5 Star Deluxe) on the North Coast is the perfect resort for the discerning traveller looking for the best in service excellence, style and luxury. It deserves its status as a Leading Hotel of the World and offers guests grace coupled with service of distinction. The beautiful gardens with swaying palm trees and endless views make this a true paradise resort. Three restaurants will ensure you savour the finest cuisine. Hospitality at this hotel is in a class of its own, with menu pillows, scent pillows, walk-in closets and much more. Sometimes in life, the best is kept for last, and in the case of this educational trip, it was certainly the case. The world famous Le Touessrok (5 Star Deluxe) is a resort which will take your breath away and it is truly worthy of its recognition as “Best Hotel in the World.” From entering this iconic resort, to stepping in your guest room, style, elegance and class will await you. European and Mediterranean influences are apparent in the architecture, while contemporary interior decorating promises comfort and luxury. 5 Restaurants and 3 bars offer a wide variety of cuisine and the perfect spot to enjoy a sun downer. The hotel is located on the east coast of the island on a peninsula and therefore boasts 4 beaches. As the water sports are offered on Ile aux Cerf which is just a 10 minute boat ride away, guests can experience total peace and quiet while enjoying the sun on any of these beaches. Should you require even more privacy, spend some time on Ilot Mangénie –a private island exclusive to Le Touessrok guests. Now it is just a case of deciding which one of these amazing resorts will be your next holiday spot as all of them offer style, elegance and true Mauritian hospitality at its best. Tell me what you are looking for and I will advise you as to which resort will best suit you.
07 August 2012
Have you always dreamt of an island holiday, lying on a sandy beach, enjoying good food and great hospitality? Then look no further than World Leisure Holidays’ Veranda Resorts. The 4 properties in the group are all very different in style, yet offer consistently great service and ambience. While being on an educational trip to Mauritius during July 2012, our group visited these properties and were delighted at what they have to offer. Veranda Pointe aux Biches (3 Star) is the perfect holiday spot for families or holidaymakers on a budget. As one steps into the reception, one is greeted by an idyllic island atmosphere created by the sand paths and rustic design. There is no dress code at this hotel, and the barefoot concept is wonderful! This hotel is located in the north coast, only 10 minutes from Grand Baie. Veranda Grand Baie (3 Star), as the name suggests - is situated right in the heart of Grand Baie and is therefore great for visitors to Mauritius who want night-life, restaurants, shopping and a lot of action. It is one of the oldest hotels in Grand Baie; the beautiful old coconut palms are a testimony to this. Even though situated in such a busy location, one feels like being in a garden when discovering this quaint hotel. The old world charm and Creole architecture is beautifully combined with modern and contemporary furniture and interior decorating. Veranda Paul & Virginie (3 Star) is a beautiful, romantic 3 star hotel, perfect for honeymooners. It is located in Grand Gaube, only 20 minutes from Grand Baie. It is more spacious and has a grander feel than the other 3 Veranda properties. It’s beautiful thatch main building built around a stunning infinity pool, provides a calm atmosphere. Green lawns and swaying palm trees and a second swimming pool, puts this 3 star hotel in a class of its own. Veranda Palmar Beach (3 Star) is definitely the Veranda property boasting the most beautiful, soft, sandy beach. It is located on the east coast and is a lovely hotel with a “home-away-from-home” appeal. Walking through the reception area, one is welcomed to the beautiful pool area, and the hotel is built in a u-shape surrounding a beautiful garden. As one walk down the path, swaying coconut palm trees greet you and beyond the garden lay a beautiful stretch of beach. What these hotels have in common is well-appointed rooms, with all the basic necessities. The interiors range from natural colours, to dark navy blues and crisp greens and coral pinks. All the properties except Veranda Palmar boast practical family rooms, featuring a main bedroom and a separate kid’s bedroom with bunk beds. In some of the properties an extra bed can even be added to the main bedroom – thus providing space for a family of 5. Most of the rooms offer showers only. The properties feature 2 restaurants, a main buffet restaurant and a beachfront restaurant and 1 bar. All the properties except Paul & Virginie have kids clubs, this hotel being the prime honeymoon spot. All of them offer some land and water sports and some offer indoor games and a shop. A wonderful feature of these 3 star properties is the 7 Colours Spa’s found at each of the properties – offering a variety of services to pamper your stress away and make you feel even more relaxed. What are you waiting for? It is time to de-stress and relax in tropical Mauritius. There will surely be a Veranda Resort to make your island dream holiday come true!
20 July 2012
Why would you have your next conference at a local conference venue if you can have it in paradise? Imagine arriving in an exotic location, smelling sweet tropical air and being welcomed by energetic sega dancers and a band playing the local music, while sipping a cocktail served in a hollowed out pineapple. I was fortunate enough to experience this, and a lot more while attending the annual Travel Counsellors Conference which was held in Mauritius, at Beachcomber’s Shandrani Resort & Spa (5 Star) from 17 to 20 May 2012. From the moment we stepped on the Air Mauritius aircraft in Johannesburg, it felt like I was going to paradise. Air Mauritius provided excellent service by friendly and attentive staff and the beautiful interior of the aircraft set the tone for an island adventure! Arriving in Mauritius, we were feeling extremely honoured as our welcoming party of sega dancers, singers and the band got us in the mood for an island break-away while the refreshing cocktails were going down well. Shandrani Resort & Spa is located on the South-East Coast of the island, and is only a short 10 minute drive away from the airport – thus being so popular amongst corporate travellers and conference delegates. As you arrive at the entrance gate of the hotel, one feels like you are entering another world. The property boasts lovely tropical gardens and is surrounded by 3 beaches; it is truly a beautiful setting. It is located in Blue Bay, which is a marine reserve; therefore it is the ideal spot for scuba diving, snorkelling and off course working on your tan – as you have 3 beaches to choose from! This 5 Star property boasts a total of 327 rooms and suites, 5 restaurants and 2 bars – so the choices are endless. There are 2 pool areas, a huge variety of activities and water sports as well as a sport and nature programme and a great kiddies club – making it a great family hotel. La Source is the most beautiful spa, where one enjoys true bliss. We stayed in superior rooms, which were very spacious and well-appointed with very comfortable beds. All the rooms have beautiful sea views and huge balconies or terraces where one can relax and unwind. The food was amazing – from the scrumptious international breakfast buffet to the lunches and dinners. If you don’t feel like the traditional” bacon & eggs” fry up, why don’t you try some flapjacks with one of many syrups or sauces available or what about pancakes? All tastes are catered for at this hotel, from the very health conscious person to the ones enjoying the finer things in life – like a huge dessert buffet with too many options to choose from – even at lunch time. We were treated with a lovely 4 course dinner on the night of our awards ceremony, which was paired with lovely wines. The staff went out of their way to make us feel special while the setting was enhanced with candles floating in the swimming pool to truly make this evening unforgettable. On another night we were feeling adventurous while being dressed as pirates and having a Mauritius barbecue dinner under the stars, right on the beach. Your company can enjoy a wonderful conference with all the latest technology available to meet all your conferencing requirements, and with the added bonus, during tea breaks or lunch times, you can step back in paradise and watch the beautiful lagoon and tropical surroundings, thus ensuring the delegates are refreshed to continue the meetings. Mauritius is truly a tropical island that offers so much for so many different holiday-makers, whether you plan to celebrate your wedding island-style or to relax on your honeymoon. Off course it is a great family vacation and as I have experienced a wonderful setting for a conference to remember. If you require any further information on Mauritius please don’t hesitate to contact me.