A silver wedding anniversary calls for nothing short of a truly memorable experience and that’s exactly what Caroline had in mind when she worked with Rob and Susie to plan their 25th anniversary trip to Eastern Europe.
Caroline has looked after the travel arrangements for Rob and Susie for many years, starting with their honeymoon. “Caroline made the process of planning this special 25th anniversary trip easy and fun. We trust her knowledge and insights – she always asks the right questions.”
Individually and together Rob and Susie have travelled extensively, so they both wanted a holiday which would take them to places neither of them had been to before. Places where they could indulge their love of history, culture and fine food combined with romance and adventure.
Susie reflects that “one of the best things about working with Caroline is that she knows how to make the most of a trip. Our time is precious, and we like to jam pack as much of the sights in as we can, so we don’t waste a minute, or miss anything, but we also like to balance this with relaxation and pleasure. Caroline knows how to do that using her extensive experience and local experts to carefully orchestrate the perfect trip”.
Perfection was realised from the moment they arrived at the Four Seasons Hotel Gresham Place, Budapest, with its romantic art nouveau guestrooms overlooking the striking Chain Bridge and the Danube River. Budapest is considered one of the most beautiful cities in the world where The Danube runs through the middle of the city dividing the hilly Buda from the Pest plain. “The day began with a city tour with our own private guide, which meant we could orientate ourselves, go at our own pace and learn more about the city from a local” says Susie.
In the comfort of a private car the couple left Budapest, to make their way to Vienna, but not before taking time enroute to explore the 18th Century town of Bratislava in Slovakia. Susie was quick to comment “we were thankful Caroline suggested this option, rather than driving ourselves. We may have missed this lovely city altogether, but this way we were able to speak (in English) with our driver and sit back and enjoy the journey without having to navigate our own way.”
Arriving in the very heart of Vienna at the iconic Hotel Sacher Wien, the romance continued. Each day Caroline arranged something iconic and different for this adventurous couple. They explored the old city by foot, with their private guide they visited the Leopold and Belvedere Art Galleries. On a wedding anniversary trip how could they miss seeing the world-famous masterpiece by Gustav Klimt, ‘Kiss’. By night they listened to the works of Mozart and explored the famous Nashcmarket. But a trip highlight for both Rob and Susie was undoubtedly the dance lesson. “We love the whole classic vibe and the difference in culture” said Susie, “we just had so much fun, laughing and dancing, it was good energy and music. The evening was capped off when we walked to the Michelin Star, vegetarian and vegan Tian Restaurant that Caroline had pre-booked for us, the dancing and restaurant experience made for a truly unforgettable experience.”
Another totally unexpected experience was the day spent travelling from Vienna to Salzburg via the Wachau Danube Valley where Caroline had arranged an eventful 4 hours of exploring which turned into one of the couple’s trip highlights. The couple were picked up at the hotel by their private driver/guide who took care of their bags, while they enjoyed a scenic 2 hours bike tour before lunch, and an afternoon of wine-tasting and a cellar door tour before arriving into Salzburg. “It really was one of the highlights of our trip. It was a lovely way to spend the day, a unique way to explore the area and we enjoyed it so much we didn’t even care that it was slightly raining whilst cycling, we still did it all, and had a wonderful time” says Susie.
In Salzburg the couple stayed at the Hotel Sacher, on the banks of the river overlooking the old town, it’s a luxury hotel, dating back to 1868 and still privately owned. This grand hotel reflects the noble country residences of the area. Here Caroline had arranged for Rob and Susie to enjoy a complementary three course dinner at the hotel’s historic Restaurant Zirbelzimmer.
“Caroline totally personalised our trip. Every hotel recognised our 25th Anniversary with something special, like a cake in Prague, honeymoon suite upgrades and the bed covered in rose petals in Salzburg. It was romantic and exciting and reminded us why we were on holiday – celebrating together. We didn’t expect it, but it was such a treat” said Susie.
From Salzburg, Rob and Susie travelled via the world heritage site of Cesky Krumlov, one of the best preserved and most beautiful medieval towns in Europe. It’s the perfect place to stop, explore and enjoy a break for lunch and a tour of the Castle before continuing on to the Four Seasons Hotel Prague. A classic landmark hotel in the Old Town, just a stone’s throw from the Charles Bridge. After a leisurely breakfast, Rob and Susie met their guide for a private walking tour. “We had such a fun time with our guide in Prague, he was very funny and knowledgeable. He introduced us to street food and bars and he loved beer” said Rob. Nicknamed the City of Spires, their guide shared his passion for his beautiful city.
After time spent in Dresden, arriving into Berlin in the late afternoon, the Hotel Das Stue was a delightful surprise. Tucked into the edge of the leafy Tiergarten, it’s a small boutique hotel located in the former Danish Embassy Building. Here the treats continue for Rob and Susie. Chef Paco Perez has his fifth Michelin star for the signature restaurant in Das Stue. And, Caroline has again arranged for a food and beverage credit to be used at the hotel during their stay. But that’s not all, she did. As a special anniversary gift, Caroline and Luxury Bound, provided a complimentary evening concert at The Berlin Philharmonic Hall. “It was a complete surprise” said Susie. “It was the most beautiful building, wonderful music and fabulous acoustics, definitely a special evening of our trip.”
After two more leisurely days exploring Berlin and recounting the many incredible and memorable moments they had enjoyed together Rob and Susie said, “we had the most fantastic three weeks, Caroline provided everything we wanted and more, we were happy, energised and valued the time we had to share these experiences together. Our trip really was tailored to everything we wanted and made just for us with no stone unturned. After 25 years, we absolutely value Caroline’s advice and Luxury Bound’s services.”
Photo Credit – Wein Tourism