NEW YORK – Upscale hotel aficionados have a new way to book stays securely online at any time of the day – and receive complimentary perks as well as the peace of mind that comes from doing so under the watchful eye of a professional travel advisor. Virtuoso, the leading global luxury and experiential travel network, has empowered travelers with the launch of its hotel booking tool, featuring several key differences from do-it-yourself sites.
When visitors to virtuoso.com request a reservation at any of the approximately 900 participating luxury hotels available worldwide, the booking will be routed to a Virtuoso travel advisor. If the traveler already works with a Virtuoso advisor, the booking will be sent to them. If travelers do not have a Virtuoso advisor, the tool assigns the booking to one, providing the consumer with all the advantages that come from booking a trip through a professional consultant. The advisor will service the booking; assist with other aspects of the trip such as transfers, private guides and exclusive experiences; and serve as a safety net to resolve any issues that may arise before, during or after the stay.
Savvy travelers are increasingly realizing the key to an outstanding trip is partnering with a Virtuoso travel advisor. With annual sales of US$21.2 billion, Virtuoso’s clout in the luxury marketplace translates into an array of value-added perks and specially negotiated pricing for its clients. Travelers who book hotel stays at www.virtuoso.com will receive a host of complimentary benefits not available on any other site, worth up to $450 per stay. Those include an upgrade to the next room category when available, breakfast for two, early check-in and late check-out if available, high-speed internet access and an additional perk such as a candlelit dinner or spa treatment. Some properties also offer in-demand experiential perks, such as a wine tasting, language class, guided bike tour or hands-on cooking encounter with a local chef.
“Virtuoso’s new hotel booking tool is an advantage for travelers who have been suffering from DIY fatigue, and didn’t realize there was an alternative,” said Virtuoso Senior Vice President of Marketing Terrie Hansen. “We’re offering them the convenience of online booking, but marrying it with the advantages of both our hotel program benefits as well as expert guidance. For many, this will be their first foray into working with a travel advisor. The hotel booking tool is a great example of how technology is actually helping bring travelers back to advisors, rather than driving them away.”
Virtuoso advisors provide their clients with professional advice based on extensive personal knowledge of destinations and products, customized planning, exceptional value, advocacy when needed and accountability throughout the planning and booking process. More importantly, though, Virtuoso advisors become experts at learning their clients’ travel preferences through trusted collaboration. Through their status as members of an invitation-only network, Virtuoso advisors enjoy personal relationships with 1,700 of the world’s finest partners and are therefore able to secure VIP treatment and behind-the-velvet-rope access to experiences for clients.
Virtuoso is launching the hotel booking tool during the 25th anniversary year of its landmark Hotels & Resorts Program. The program, which began as a complement to cruise offerings in 1992, started with just 25 properties. Today, with a total of 1,205 hotels, resorts, lodges, spas, luxury camps and villas across 100 countries, the Virtuoso Hotels & Resorts program is the industry’s longest-running and most prestigious, with more five-star properties than any other organization.