What we learned about Experiences by Sunquest

10-03-2017 2:37 pm

An eventful six days in Cancun and Playa Mujeres wrapped up last week as TravelBrands’ Experiences by Sunquest FAM came to a close, with agents gaining invaluable insight into the product and its range of different offerings.

“Better to see something once than to hear about it a thousand times,” is a slogan that seems to suit the product range well. Encompassing 114 unique experiences across 85 properties and several different categories – with 109 air-inclusive packages – Experiences by Sunquest seeks to deliver opportunity for agent and traveller alike, offering all-inclusive, easy-to-book packages that feature numerous agent incentives, an appealing brochure, and enhanced package options.

What we learned

  • Experiences by Sunquest is fully customizable – with your choice of preferred airline, first class/business class/premium economy, room upgrades, car upgrades, and tours and excursions.
  • Some properties have limited availability – meaning that certain rooms must be requested well in advance. These include Hard Rock Hotel Cancun in the Incredible Rooms category, Parador de Leon in the Historic Collection, and Boucan by Hotel Chocolat in Something Different.
  • Agents can book Experiences by Sunquest packages on Revnet, Sirev, Sabre Vacations, Galileo, Amadeus, and Access.
  • A series of Training Guides for Experiences by Sunquest are available in the Agent Tools section of Access, listing every property by collection with comprehensive information on each. These aren’t agent-only, either – they come in the form of PDFs that can be forwarded to your clients.

The Experiences by Sunquest line is divided into different categories, each with their own unique appeal and selling points:

Something Different

This one is for travellers who are seeking a unique, lesser-known type of experience that will quench their thirst for discovery. Properties include Boucan by Hotel Chocolat, St. Lucia, situated on a cocoa plantation; here, you can pick a pod and follow its journey all the way towards becoming a chocolate bar. FAM participants also took in the Turquoize Experience at Hyatt Ziva Cancun – offering a unique resort-within-a-resort experience.

Hyatt Ziva Cancun. Photo - PAXnews.com

Back to Nature

This offering is ideal for travellers looking to extricate themselves from the complications of the modern world and take a step back into a more natural setting. Blending heart-thudding activities like ziplining and skiing with relaxing experiences such as stargazing and snorkeling, this category includes several Canadian properties – Fairmont Banff Springs, Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise, Fairmont Chateau Whistler and Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge – in addition to other idyllic locations like Long Bay Beach Club in B.V.I. and Mexico’s Explorean Cozumel.

Incredible Rooms

You may be familiar with some of the resorts in this category, but chances are you won’t be aware of many of the rooms on offer. With Incredible Rooms, TravelBrands aims to showcase lesser-known room categories in esteemed properties – meaning there’s a focus on rock star suites, two-level plunge pools, and over-the-water suites. Among the properties travel agents got a closer look at during the FAM were Secrets Silversands Riviera Cancun, Secrets Akumal Riviera Maya, Hard Rock Hotel Cancun, Finest Playa Mujeres by Excellence Group, Fairmont Mayakoba, and Iberostar Grand Hotel Paraiso.

Secrets Silversands Riviera Cancun. Photo - PAXnews.com

Historic Collection

For those travellers who are intrigued by the history and culture that contribute to a destination’s identity, the Historic Collection is the ideal offering – ranging from ancient Spanish buildings converted to Paradors, to locations in London, Jamaica and Curacao that are brimming with history. “Amongst this collection of historic places, there are two standouts,” says Elvi Cal, vice president, product development. Those are London hotel The Savoy, a prime location for celebrity-spotting, and Spain’s Parador de Santiago de Compostela.

Luxury Collection

This category promises luxury, and that’s what it delivers. Featuring a range of properties with exclusive offerings and first-rate service, it also includes a number of opulent locations that have been frequented by the rich and famous, such as Round Hill Hotel & Village in Montego Bay, where John and Jackie Kennedy honeymooned. Other noteworthy offerings are the Abaco Club on Winding Bay and Jamaica Inn – the latter of which was the scene of Arthur Miller and Marilyn Monroe’s honeymoon.

Amazing Views

With spectacular sights ranging from stunning waterfalls to picturesque villages, this category showcases some of the best views a traveller could hope to find. From the pink beaches of Coral Sands Hotel to the sweeping panoramas provided by Hermitage Bay Antigua, this one is ideal for snap-happy adventurers looking for unique and memorable photos from their vacations. Wayne Noseworthy, senior director, product development, TravelBrands, recommends one hotel in particular: Jade Mountain, whose rooms are notable for their lack of a fourth wall. “Spectacular,” he comments. “There’s no better word to describe Jade Mountain.”

Amazing Islands

This collection of off-the-beaten-path destinations explores beautiful islands aside from those that are best-known to ‘mainstream’ travellers. Five locations are offered here: Hilton at Resorts World Bimini, Abaco Beach Resort & Boat Harbour Marina, Valentine’s Resort & Marina, and Grand Isle Resort Exuma – the latter of which is situated on the lesser-spotted Exuma Islands, consisting of a group of 350 smaller islands.