The Co-Operative, Brecon
Senior travel advisor Tracey Harvey had always wanted to go to Massachusetts, but could never persuade her husband to join her. Now she has been on the Travel Weekly Cover Stars trip, she has changed his mind – and can’t wait to plan a return trip
Q: Why were you so keen to go on the Cover Stars trip?
A: If I am honest, I just love the US. I have been to Los Angeles, San Francisco and Washington, and our family favourite is Orlando. I really wanted to go to Boston and Cape Cod, but my husband didn’t, so I hadn’t been. When I saw the details of the Cover Stars trip, it was the destination that drew me in. The best way to sell a destination is to go there. It was only when I went there that I realised just how close Boston and Cape Cod are and how easy it is to turn into a multi-stay trip. If you are enthusiastic about somewhere, it rubs off. I have been able to recommend to clients lots since.
Q: In your view, what makes Boston different from a trip to New York?
A: I found the Bostonians so friendly. New York can be quite faceless, but in Boston, if people see you holding a map, they stop and talk to you. I thought Boston would be like New York or any other large East Coast city. But it was far more than that. I was staying at the Boston Sheraton Hotel and had a suite overlooking the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the Charles River. Waking up to that backdrop was fantastic. Boston was prettier than I thought it would be. It is quite leafy with lots of avenues of trees, and it was still autumnal in November, so the colours were there too. It’s a very walkable city and the Metro is so efficient.
Q: Tell us about some of the best bits of your stay in Boston?
A: We went on the Duck Tour and the guide made it for us, as you look out for other things [that we wouldn’t have looked for] as a result. I also loved the Beacon Hill area and all the quaint cobbled streets. It had just been Halloween when we were there, so there were pumpkins on people’s doorsteps.
Q: Overall, where did you enjoy visiting the most?
A: Cape Cod was my highlight. I do love coastal destinations and it felt as if we were getting away from it all – although it’s only a 90-minute high-speed ferry trip from Boston to Provincetown in the summer. We were lucky enough to go on a 4×4 sand dune tour in Provincetown, and as we dropped down towards the sea, we even saw seals playing in the surf.
Q: What was the highlight of your Cape Cod trip?
A: Sitting at the Sea Crest Beach Hotel in Falmouth and watching the sunset with a cocktail. The beach was so deserted – I was ‘wowed’.
Q: Did you shop till you dropped?
A: I love shopping, so Wrentham Village Premium Outlets mall was my kind of paradise. I have been to the outlet villages in Orlando before, so I was all prepared with my discount booklet before I went. I got my money’s worth and I easily filled the extra suitcase we were given.
Q: How was the photoshoot?
A: Truth be told, I am not one for having my picture taken, so it did push me out of my comfort zone. Also, I wasn’t in an outfit that I necessarily would have chosen myself. But sometimes you have to go with what others think, and the photographer was fantastic. I did get a DKNY bag out of it, too – my work colleagues couldn’t believe that I got to keep it.
Tracey’s outfit was created at Wrentham Village Premium Outlets. Her boots are from Clark’s Bostonian. Tracey’s hair and make-up was courtesy of Aveda at Copley Place, where she was photographed. Located in Boston’s historic Back Bay area, Copley Place is home to some of the world’s most luxurious brands including Tiffany & Co, David Yurman and Christian Dior.
Tracey’s sales tips
Tip 1: Sell Massachusetts as an alternative to Orlando or Dubai, as the flight time is shorter.
Tip 2: It suits all. Families or couples would enjoy a twin-centre to Boston and Cape Cod.
Tip 3: For clients who like sport, history, shopping or the beach, there’s something to keep them happy.
A flight to remember
It isn’t often Tracey Harvey doesn’t want to disembark from a long-haul flight, but this was one such occasion.
From the minute she stepped into the departures lounge before her Virgin Atlantic flight to Boston, she knew she had to make the most of every second of her journey.
She said: “We indulged in afternoon tea in the Virgin Atlantic Clubhouse, and I knew from that point on that this trip was going to be super-duper special.
“When we were going to board, it said ‘Upper Class’ on our tickets, and we just looked at each other in amazement.”
Tracey just couldn’t get enough of the experience.
“There were so many personal touches. I felt completely and utterly indulged,” she added.
“A few of us thought we might get some shut-eye on the flight, but there was no way I was going to miss a second of it. It’s the only flight I have never wanted to get off! None of us wanted it to end.”
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