Nothing is out of reach for travelers and tourists – if they have the money.
As long as they have that and the travel advisors and concierge services with the connections to make it happen, anything is possible.
In a fun story written by Kate Springer of CNN.com detailing the wildest holiday requests from wealthy travelers, nothing is too outrageous.
Not even the famed Sistine Chapel, which was secured by a New York family of six for $75,000 for a private viewing of Michelangelo’s artwork. Completely private, that is, as in just the six of them.
In fact, luxury travel even in the face of the coronavirus pandemic was recently discussed on one of TravelPulse’s weekly podcasts.
And that Sistine Chapel booking? Not even the most outlandish adventure. To wit:
– Luxury travel specialist Black Tomato made a dream proposal come true by hiding a diamond ring inside an ice cave for the bride-to-be to discover. On another trip, Black Tomato was able to lure a top Hollywood cinematographer, who had filmed blockbusters like “Star Wars” and “Interstellar,” to shoot a family on their six-week sailing vacation through the Indonesian islands. Cost? $665,000.
“The only reason any of these things are possible is that we’ve got a fantastic network of fixers around the world, who know us and the types of experiences we like to provide,” Tom Marchant, co-founder of Black Tomato, told CNN.
– A travel advisor at Remote Lands helped a family of four purchase all 12 first-class seats on a flight to Korea so the whole group could have the luxury cabin to themselves. Cost? Well at $20,000 a seat, you can do the quick math.
– How Element Lifestyle founder Michael Albanese pulled this off we’ll never know but he once surprised a client, whose girlfriend was obsessed with penguins, with penguins in their hotel suite in San Diego.
“When we learned that [the girlfriend] loved penguins, it sparked an idea. Can we hire an animal wrangler? Can we get the hotel on board? We started making calls and it came together pretty easily,” he tells CNN Travel. “There were three penguins in total – one was a bit grumpy and stood off in the corner. But needless to say, that set the tone for the entire weekend.”
– And for those who are super-rich, the coronavirus doesn’t seem to be slowing them down especially for domestic travel, with international restrictions still in place. Marchant says Black Tomato’s travelers are booking domestic road trips and longer, more immersive stays in remote places.
“In the short term, we are seeing people’s decision-making processes being driven by where they can go and how easy it will be,” he said. “Some want to hole up in a private house in Montana or stay on a private island with their family – we’ve found lots of private properties and private yachts for clients. That way, you can work during the day, but over the weekend or evenings, you are surrounded by beautiful scenery and nature and new things to do.”