Virtuoso plots European expansion

Virtuoso plots European expansion
By admin


Luxury travel network Virtuoso will expand into the UK and Europe, possibly as early as this year, with longer term plans to take the brand to Asia and the Middle East.

Europe was on the agenda for Virtuoso several years ago but was shelved when the global financial crisis bought the world's economy to its knees.

Now, with many Virtuoso agents reportedly showing growth, global expansion is back in its sights.

Becky Powell, pictured, senior vice president global member sales and development, said the UK and Spain would likely be its first European markets.

"Europe is definitely something we are looking at and it could happen as early as late 2013 or early 2014," she told Travel Today. "The Middle East and Asia are also on the radar. In Asia it's about having a partner to go in there with. It is such a different market."

Virtuoso has a presence in more than 20 countries, including the US and several in Latin America, with 31 members in 50 locations in Australia and New Zealand.

Despite concerns over the economy, Powell said the luxury market remained strong with only the cruise market resorting to discounting.

Eight of out 10 US agents reported revenue growth of between 5% and 25%, she said, growth which is being mirrored in Australia.

"The rich are still travelling, still spending the money and wanting those life experiences," she said.

Virtuoso Australia manager Julie Denovan said local Virtuoso agents "are probably at the upper end of that 5% to 25% range".

The network is targeting growth of 10% in 2013.

Meanwhile, Virtuoso will launch a new enhanced version of its website, Virtuoso.com, in April. It will include product from its 1700 preferred suppliers with sample itineraries, photographs and ship deck layouts.

Later in the year, consumers will also be able to search for Virtuoso consultants who are specialists in the region that are travelling to.

An Australian version of the site will also be launched.

Latest News

  • Destinations
  • News

APT Launches 2025 Asia Adventures

APT has launched its Asia Adventures for 2025, including new luxury holidays in India, Sri Lanka and Japan. Five new tours lead guests to the highlights of India, including a seven-night cruise along the rarely travelled Lower Ganges aboard the Ganges Voyager. Further south, Sri Lanka’s greatest destinations are revealed on a new 15-day Land […]

  • Cruise
  • Luxury
  • News

Seabourn announces Western Kimberley Traditional Owners as Godparents of Seabourn Pursuit

Seabourn has named Western Kimberley Traditional Owners, the Wunambal Gaambera, as Godparents of the ultra-luxury purpose-built Seabourn Pursuit. It is the first cruise line to appoint Traditional Owners as godparents of a ship. Seabourn Pursuit embarks on its inaugural season in the Kimberley region this June. The naming ceremony will take place on Seabourn Pursuit’s […]

  • Luxury

Malolo Island Resort opens brand new Spa

Fiji’s Malolo Island has added another string to its bow – opening its $1.3 million day spa on Thursday, 18th April 2024. (Lead Image: matriarch Rosie Whitton with spa staff) Located at the edge of the resort’s luscious patch of tropical rainforest, the new “Leilani’s Spa” adds another level of elevated experiences to Malolo’s already […]