To ensure Executive Edge Travel remains on the cutting edge of au courant luxury travel trends and connected to the finest travel suppliers on the planet, our Travel Advisors attend all yearly industry trade shows most relevant to the luxury sector – namely Virtuoso Travel Week, PURE, LE Miami, ILTM Shanghai, Virtuoso Symposium, Luxperience and more. Our Directors also serve on the Board of a number of prominent travel organizations including Starwood, Butterfield & Robinson and more.
Invitation-only travel exhibition held yearly in the magical city of Marrakech to conduct business at the highest level, network and exchange the latest ideas and trends in the Experiential and Transformational travel market. Access to the PURE community is exclusively reserved for the finest and purest life experience Creators and Private Travel Designers serving the following travel segments:
lodges, retreats and unique hotels | discovery journeys | wilderness experiences | explorative adventure | gastronomic & cultural escapes | philanthropic travel | health and wellness
Since PURE’s inception in 2009, Director Yvonne Verstandig or Director Sally Bird has attended the PURE exhibition in Marrakech representing Executive Edge Travel.
LE Miami is the first and only global event for the high-end contemporary travel industry which unites pioneers from the worlds of art, fashion, film and media – contemporary travel’s most influential and creative players. Executive Edge has been invited to join this cutting edge collective every year since its inception in 2013. All the most innovative and relevant contemporary travel industry players attend along with the world’s au currant fashion and entertainment buyers and travel designers, like Executive Edge. LE Miami is a key avenue for ensuring Edge connects our valued clients directly with the most innovative and exciting contemporary travel trends and hotels on the planet including:
- ART & DESIGN HOTELS WITH THE HIGHEST AESTHETIC INTEGRITY
- PRESTIGE CONTEMPORARY HOTELS
- FUNKY HIGH-TECH HOTELS
- COUTURE PALACES
- LUXURY BEACH PADS
- STYLISH SNOW RETREATS
- SPA VOYAGES
- UBER BOATING & YACHTING IN STYLE
- ENTERTAINMENT HOTSPOTS, COOL VENUES & FOODIE HIDEOUTS
- IN-THE-KNOW GROUND OPERATORS
Virtuoso Travel Week is the ultimate relationship-driven community and the luxury travel industry’s ultimate annual global event held annually in Las Vegas, Nevada. Edge consultants attend VTW every year to deliver the most authentic, best connected travel experiences for our clients. Like the annual Fashion Week in Paris, VTW is the ultimate buying trip to SHOP for travel during 4 minute meetings (up to 100 every day) with the finest travel providers on the planet. VTW features thousands of hours of personal networking between Virtuoso Member Agencies and Virtuoso Preferred Suppliers to learn about the newest hotel openings and latest trends in luxury travel. Edge then leverages those invaluable connections and forged relationships from VTW to tailor itineraries for our clients.
The annual Virtuoso Symposium, in 2014 held in Berlin, is a high level business meeting of Virtuoso agencies and suppliers from all over the world who converge each year for an opportunity for the owners to meet with suppliers. This event features a discussion on travel trends, challenges, opportunities and the future of travel in general. Every day there are sessions on trends, special events, lunches, activities and every evening a special dinner in an extraordinary location. Our Directors attend and bring the conversation of the latest news and offerings of the Virtuoso network home to Australia and our clients at Executive Edge.
Luxperience is the only bespoke travel business exchange in the Southern Hemisphere based in the Australasia and Pacific region that connects the world’s most exclusive travel providers dealing in luxury and experiential travel. Executive Edge Travel is part of this exclusive invitation-only community of global travel trade specialists who attend Luxperience’s annual 3-day event.
Taking place in Shanghai every year, ILTM Asia is the leading luxury travel event for the Asia Pacific region. It’s an international, invitation-only global event where the suppliers of the world’s best luxury travel experiences meet the buyers representing Asia Pacific’s market of luxury travellers.
Starwood Luxury Travel Advisory Board
Starwood Hotels & Resorts represented by The Luxury Collection, St. Regis, and W Hotels Worldwide make up one of the largest operators of luxury hotels in the world.
The Starwood Luxury Travel Advisory Board is comprised of a select group of leaders in the luxury travel industry from across the globe, including Edge Director Yvonne Verstandig. The board serves as key advisors for everything from product offerings to hotel design as Starwood develops their luxury strategy and implements innovative initiatives which shape the future of their hotels and resorts. Yvonne provides input and critical insights based on her wealth of experience and intuitive grasp of the current luxury market trends.
Butterfield & Robinson Advisory Board
Butterfield & Robinson’s defining concept of “slowing down to see the world,” defines the raisons d’être for traveling in general. Butterfield & Robinson has been leading trips that amble where others stride, linger where others inhale, bike where others motor and sip where others quaff. Voted the ‘World’s Best Tour Operator’ by Travel & Leisure magazine, Butterfield & Robinson boasts the finest biking and walking routes in the world’s most incredible places for the last 50 years. To experience the B&R difference, Edge Director Yvonne Verstandig took their cycling adventure in the Netherlands, even taking the ‘century challenge.’ Given that experiential travel is Yvonne’s specialty and personal favorite type of travel coupled with her absolute enthusiasm for the B&R Netherlands sojourn, she was asked to serve on the Board of this venerable organization.
To read Yvonne’s Travel Blog about her B&R journey in the Netherlands click here:
New York State Australian Travel Advisory Board
Director Yvonne Verstandig was chosen as a board member of the inaugural New York State Australian Travel Advisory Board. She attended an educational tour of the various regions of New York including workshops and Focus Group Meetings with constituents from New York State regions as a representative for the Australian travel marketplace. The goal of the Board is to increase luxury travel to New York State from Australia and assist in how New York can position themselves better in the Australian market. The regions highlighted were Long Island & The Hamptons, Hudson Valley, Greater Niagra & Buffalo, Adirondacks, Catskills, Finger Lakes, Central New York, Capital Saratoga, Thousand Islands, Rochester & Erie Canal.
CT Partners Board
CT Partners is the most significant travel agency consortium in Australia and a dynamic force in the Australian corporate travel sector. Established in early 2004, the group is made up of 15 of the largest independent corporate travel management firms, with a combined turnover of over $1 billion. Executive Edge was a co-founder of CT Partners and Edge Director Gary Reichenberg continues to serve as a Board member since inception. This alliance provides Executive Edge with the ultimate industry purchasing power. Gary’s direction on the Board has established a very strong platform for further growth and development of the organization.
Virtuoso Events Committee
Director Yvonne Verstandig is serving on the inaugural Virtuoso Events Committee representing Asia Pacific. Working closely with the other 7 worldwide members, the Virtuoso Events Committee meets the needs of the great network of Virtuoso Member agencies across the globe and its Preferred Partners by making the best possible decisions as they relate to the composition, design and operations of Virtuoso’s various events to ensure we remain at the forefront of the industry. With this appointment Yvonne also partakes in Virtuoso’s Apac Strategic Working Group which meets monthly to discuss strategic matters that face the network and members businesses.
Tauck Certified Agent
Edge’s Senior Advisor Amy Wasbutzki is a Tauck Certified Agent, joining less than 1% of Tauck’s worldwide network of travel agents who successfully completed the Tauck Academy 9 hour training program curriculum. Tauck is a 90-year-old leader in premium quality guided travel, with over 120 land journeys and cruises to more than 70 countries and all seven continents. The company was named the “World’s Best River Cruise Line” by the readers of Travel + Leisure magazine.
In May 2017, Yvonne Verstandig attended the Connections luxury trade show in Ireland. Connections is the global networking and event organiser exclusively serving senior leaders and experts in luxury, wellness and meetings. Each event welcomes just 80 delegates (30-40 top buyers, 30-40 selected luxury suppliers) for one hour each face to face meetings based upon experiences. Buyers are selected through extensive research and word of mouth recommendation and represent key and emerging luxury travel markets. The suppliers are the best companies in luxury travel around the globe who are invited to participate; these include airlines, hotels, private jet and yacht charters, cruise lines and destinations.
In April, CT Connections Owner Gary Reichenberg and Executive Edge Co-Founder and Head of Leisure Yvonne Verstandig headed to Honolulu for the Virtuoso Owners & Managers meeting for Asia Pacific region for two days of meetings and continued education about the Virtuoso network. Virtuoso Forum Honolulu offers all agency owners and managers worldwide the opportunity to gather in a collaborative setting and draw on the knowledge of outside experts and Virtuoso leaders, provide topical breakout sessions for members to discuss important issues facing their businesses, and include valuable networking time with Preferred Partners.
Executive Edge Travel’s Co-founder and Head of Leisure Yvonne Verstandig was one of 18 challengers chosen for the transformational PURE PURSUITS journey in Norway in April 2018. Collaborating with the leading travel industry visionaries in the world, Yvonne spent 6 days tackling PURE PURSUITS Norway, an all-immersive high-intensity expedition through the Scandinavian mountains and fjords. PURE PURSUITS Norway was designed to foster creativity, cultivate connections and alter perspectives whilst problem solving, inspiring discussion and experiencing exhilarating adventure – all with the ultimate aim of pushing the travel industry forward, together.
At PURE PURSUITS Norway Yvonne presented her own vision for the travel industry to make a difference and brought all of the revolutionary ideas from her esteemed industry colleagues home to Australia to take Executive Edge Travel to new heights.
Emotions Travel Community
In April 2018, Amy Wasbutzki attended Emotions Buenos Aires. Emotions Buenos Aires unites the Latin American and Caribbean community with the most eager to learn buyers in the world. Embracing the Danish concept of ‘Hygge’, a celebration of small details and pursuit of everyday happiness, togetherness and gratitude, Emotions brings together the ‘happiest event in the travel industry.’ Emotions is the only niche event focused on luxury travel experiences from Latin American and the Caribbean in a harmonious environment focused on building personalized relationships with its curated selection of only the best products in the region over a 4 day period.