Virtuoso Life Magazine

Enjoy the new issue of Virtuoso Life

Call Josh for details, excellent pricing, the ultimate in service & exclusive hotel amenities with Virtuoso.  To receive our periodic destination and/or promotional emails, click here.

josh friedman luxury travel
in san francisco
415.987.0372 | joshfriedmantravel.com
an independent affiliate of travel experts | a virtuoso agency
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four seasons preferred partner,
Josh Friedman is an old-fashioned travel agent offering highly personalized 24/7 service. Specialties include high-end and bespoke luxury travel for small groups and individuals.  His areas of expertise include ultra-luxury cruises, customized vacations & luxury hotel stays.  He also plans spectacular honeymoons, anniversary and birthday celebrations and completes trips that clients have started and just can’t quite figure out how to finish.

His relationships built over twenty years with the world’s top hotels, cruise lines and local agencies will ensure your successful vacation. As a client you get exclusive and complimentary perks that you can’t get on your own — from VIP introduction to the hotel’s management to upgrades, scrumptious breakfasts and hotel spending credits.

4083 24th street, #460250,  san francisco, ca 94114 cst# 2080753-40

Josh Friedman Luxury Travel | San Francisco

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Virtuoso Travel Week Defined #VirtuosoWk

Would you like to know what type of conference I attended in Las Vegas 2 weeks ago? Here’s a cool video they showed us at the Opening Session………

Josh

josh friedman luxury travel
in san francisco
415.987.0372 | joshfriedmantravel.com
with travel experts, a virtuoso member agency

Josh Friedman is an old-fashioned travel agent offering highly personalized 24/7 service. Specialties include high-end and bespoke luxury travel for small groups and individuals. His areas of expertise include ultra-luxury cruises, customized vacations & luxury hotel stays. He also plans spectacular honeymoons, anniversary and birthday celebrations and completes trips that clients have started and just can’t quite figure out how to finish.

His relationships built over twenty years with the world’s top hotels, cruise lines and local agencies will ensure your successful vacation. As a client you get exclusive and complimentary perks that you can’t get on your own — from VIP introduction to the hotel’s management to upgrades, scrumptious breakfasts and hotel spending credits.

affiliated with travel experts, a virtuoso agency and four seasons preferred partner, 201 spear st., ste 1100, san francisco, ca 94105 cst# 2080753-40.

Virtuoso Best of the Best Awards

Live from Virtuoso Travel Week in Las Vegas!

Here are the winners in 2013:

Best achievement in Design/
Dorado Beach, a Ritz Carlton reserve
(Puerto Rico)

Best Culinary Experience/
La Scene, Prince de Galles, a Luxury Collection Hotel
(Paris)

Best Bar
Armani/Bamboo Bar. Armani Hotel Milano (Italy)

Best Family Program/
The Gleneagles Hotel, Perthshire, Scotland

Best Spa/
Spa Mukul, Mukul Beach Golf and Spa, Tola, Nicaragua
“Nicaragua deserves to be in the news for something positive”

Most Innovative Guest Experience/
Banjaar Tola by Taj Safaris, Kanha National Park. Madhya Pradesh, India

Sustainable Tourism Leadership/
The Savoy, London, England

One to Watch/
The St. Regis Saadiyat Island Resort, Abu Dhabi, Abu Dhabi UAE

Hotelier of the Year/
Francois Delahaye, Hotel Plaza Athenee Dorchester Collection, Paris, France

Hotel of the Year/
Mandarin Oriental Hong Kong
“Dedicated to my team home in Hong Kong”

Josh Friedman Luxury Travel
San Francisco, CA USA
joshfriedmantravel.com
415/987-0372

David Copperfield at Virtuoso Week

#VirtuosoWk

Josh is Hosting Voyager Club Again! Seabourn Sojourn July 2013

Josh Friedman Luxury Travel
+1 (415) 987-0372
josh@joshfriedmantravel.com
virtuosomemberlogo_thumb.jpg

Dear fellow clients and sailors ……. I had such a fun time earlier this year as well as in 2011 as a Voyager Club host that I’m doing it again! Escape the cold and foggy summers of San Francisco or the hot and oppressive summers of the rest of the country and join Virtuoso’s Voyager Club for a 5 star week on my new favorite ship – Seabourn Sojourn.

Call or email me to learn about our exclusive perks, including both a complimentary shore event and an shipboard credit. Not to mention a very fun crowd!
7-Day The Baltic and St Petersburg

Company Seabourn Cruise Line
Ship Seabourn Sojourn
Cruise Dates 09 Jul, 2013 – 16 Jul, 2013
Begin/End Stockholm to Copenhagen
Length 8 days

 

Day Date Location Arrive Depart
1 Tue, 09 Jul 2013 Stockholm 4:00 PM
2 Wed, 10 Jul 2013 Tallinn 10:00 AM 5:00 PM
3 Thu, 11 Jul 2013 Saint Petersburg 8:00 AM
4 Fri, 12 Jul 2013 Saint Petersburg
5 Sat, 13 Jul 2013 Saint Petersburg 6:00 PM
6 Sun, 14 Jul 2013 Helsinki 8:00 AM 5:00 PM
7 Mon, 15 Jul 2013 Day-at-Sea
8 Tue, 16 Jul 2013 Copenhagen 7:00 AM

What’s Included

Accommodations aboard ship l Onboard meals l Beverages, including select wines, champagnes and spirits, beer, soft drinks, bottled water l Onboard Staff Gratuities l Entertainment and onboard programs

What’s Not Included

Airfare Port Charges, Taxes, Security Fees and Fuel Surcharge l Shore Excursions l Personal expenses l Some premium wine, champagne, and spirit selections are not included in your fare l Anything not noted as included

Terms & Conditions

All fares are in U.S. dollars, cruise-only per guest, double occupancy, subject to availability. | Some suite categories may not be available. | Government fees and taxes are additional. Fares are not combinable with any other offer, vary by sailing date, are capacity controlled, are subject to change without prior notice. Seabourn reserves the right to charge a fuel supplement for all guests, without prior notice, if the NYMEX oil price exceeds $70.00 per barrel, and may collect such a supplement even if the cruise fare has been paid in full. | Certain restrictions apply. | Information herein is accurate at time of printing. | Select promotional offers including American Express cardholder benefits and “Run of House” fares are not be combinable with Virtuoso amenities. | The Seabourn Referral Shipboard Credit is not combinable with the Voyager Club Shipboard Credit option. | The Virtuoso shore event, shore excursion, or shipboard credit is non-transferable and non-refundable. | Please note that ground operators and other suppliers are independently owned and operated, and are not controlled by Virtuoso or Virtuoso Discoveries. | Your participation in this event serves as your acknowledgment that neither Virtuoso nor Virtuoso Discoveries is responsible for the acts or omissions of these third parties. | Virtuoso amenity option must be selected at least 45-days prior to sailing date and may not be changed. | Within 45-days prior to sailing options may not be changed. | Virtuoso events and amenities are capacity controlled, subject to change without notice and may be withdrawn at any time. | The Virtuoso host will provide final event program details onboard to guests who have opted for the main Voyager Club event. | Other restrictions and limitations may apply. | See your Virtuoso Travel Advisor for more details and applicable restrictions. | All Virtuoso Member Travel Agencies are independently owned and operated, and are not controlled by Virtuoso. | Seabourn reserves the right to correct errors. Offers are subject to availability and may be altered or withdrawn at any time without prior notice. | Ships’ registry: Bahamas ©2011 Seabourn

Voyager Club Benefits
All Virtuoso Guests Receive

  • Welcome Reception
  • Onboard Host

Each passenger may select 1 Voyager Club Benefit(s)
Helsinki Highlights, Arts and Architecture | Helsinki | 14 July 2013
Length: 7 hours
Description

Helsinki is a modern European cultural city whose urban cosmopolitan lifestyle exists in perfect harmony with nature. Surrounded by the sea and its own exotic archipelago, Helsinki offers visitors an endless number of possibilities. Throughout its 450-year history, Helsinki has existed in the crosscurrents of the East and West. The colorful layers of history can be seen everywhere. Today’s Helsinki is also a city of the future. Its modern architecture, cutting-edge design and high-technology have attracted international recognition for the city. Unique lifestyles and urban subcultures are all a part of this international metropolis.

Our day begins with a drive from the harbor to historic Senate Square, built in neo-classic style after Helsinki became the capital of Finland in 1812. From there, we will pass by the shipyard and boat harbors, and see the Suomenlinna Island Fortress and “Diplomat Town” where most of the foreign embassies are located. Leaving the city along the coastal road, we will have a beautiful view of the archipelago and travel through “Tech Town”, the University village in Otaniemi, and Tapiola, the “Garden City”, both of which were designed by the famous Finnish architect, Alvar Aalto.

We will then make our way to Hvittrask Museum, built in 1902 and former home of the famous Finnish architects, Eliel Saarinen, Armas Lindgren, and Herman Gesellius. Famed for its architecture, Hvittrask’s buildings are made of natural stones and logs from the surrounding area which is forested and situated by a lake. It is an exhibition center for Finnish art and handicrafts. We’ll visit the magnificent house of Eliel Saarinen, and have some free time to wander about and experience the serenity of this beautiful place before moving on to our wonderful luncheon venue.

We’ll enjoy a delicious 3- course repast complimented by wine at the Kulosaaren Casino restaurant. Acclaimed for its traditional cuisine and atmosphere, the restaurant boasts the most beautiful sea view in Helsinki.

After lunch, our return to the pier takes us back to the center of Helsinki and past the stainless steel monument of composer Jean Sibelius, a patriot whose most famous orchestral piece was appropriately named Finlandia. We will also pass the Olympic Stadium, used for the 1952 Olympic Games and the statue of the “Flying Finn”, runner Paavo Nurmi. We’ll continue along Mannerheim Street, where we will see several important buildings such as Finlandia Hall, the National Museum, and the Parliament House. We’ll make a short visit to the glorious Temppeliaukio or Rock Church, carved out of solid rock and topped with a copper dome before our return to the pier.

Suggested Attire/Walking Notes: Casual with comfortable shoes recommended. Easy to moderate walking required up some stairs and inclines at the Museum. There will be areas for those who do not wish to walk to explore while waiting for the rest of the group.

Please Note
This itinerary is subject to change without notice due to local conditions or other considerations. This Voyager Club Event is not transferable and cannot be used in conjunction with another sailing. This Virtuoso Club Event has no cash value, cannot be redeemed or refunded for cash. Credit will not be issued for unused services. Ground operators and other suppliers are independently owned and operated and are not controlled by Virtuoso. Your participation in this event serves as your acknowledgment that Virtuoso is not responsible for the acts or omissions of these third parties.
Meals: L

Age Appropriateness
All Ages
Activity Level
Moderate
Activity Type

  • Sightseeing

$150 Per Person Shipboard Credit

Onboard credit applied to your shipboard account.

$175 Custom Credit Towards the Purchase of a Virtuoso Exclusive Product

Call Josh for details, excellent pricing, the ultimate in service & complimentary amenities with Voyager Club.

Top Producer with & Knowledgeable Person for All Luxury Lines:

Seabourn’s Pinnacle Club

Cunard’s Commodore

Regent Seven Seas Cruises

Crystal Cruises

Silversea

josh friedman luxury travel
in san francisco’s financial district
415.987.0372 | joshfriedmantravel.com
with travel experts, a virtuoso member agency

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[sign up for exclusive offers!]

Read my review of Seabourn Sojourn
Read my review of Seabourn Spirit

Read my review of Silver Cloud

Read my review of Oceania’s Marina

Read all luxury cruise ship reviews with photos

Josh Friedman is a travel agent specializing in luxury travel for small groups and individuals – particularly ultra-luxury cruises, customized vacations and food & wine inspired journeys.  Based in San Francisco, and with clients throughout the USA, his business is focused on 24/7 personalized service to the sophisticated leisure and business traveler.  His personal  relationships with the world’s top hotels, cruise lines and local agencies often allows for exclusive amenities and VIP status. 

 If you’d like to learn more about luxury travel and our services, please contact Josh Friedman Luxury Travel in San Francisco’s Financial District via phone at 415.987.0372  or email: josh [at] joshfriedmantravel [dot] com. Follow him on Twitter and Facebook, too.

associated with travel experts, a virtuoso member and four seasons preferred partner, 201 spear st., ste 1100,  san francisco, ca 94105 cst# 2080753-40

Virtuoso Travel Hotel Awards

Live from Bellagio in Las Vegas, Nevada. All are our wonderful hotel partners providing our clients with personalized service. You won’t get this by booking direct or online. This is a people business! And a great one at that.

Best achievement in design : Park Hyatt Sydney

Best culinary experience: Sur Mersur, Mandarin Oriental. Paris

Best Bar: L10 at Montage Beverly Hills

Best Family Program: Four Seasons Punta Mita

Best Spa: Le Royal Monceau (Miraval runner up)

Most Innovative Guest Experience: Las Ventanas

Most Socially Responsible: Lefay Resort and Spa Lago di Garda, Italy

One to Watch (best? new hotel):  Amanruya, Aegean Coast Turkey

Hotelier of the Year: Villa d’Este, Cernobbio Italy – Danilo Zucchetti

Hotel of the Year: Beverly Hills Hotel, Dorchester Collection

 

josh friedman luxury travel
in san francisco’s financial district
415.987.0372 | joshfriedmantravel.com
with casto, a virtuoso member agency

 

yelp!   Twitter   Facebook  Flickr  You Tube
[sign up for exclusive offers!]

 

Josh Friedman is a travel agent specializing in luxury travel for small groups and individuals – particularly ultra-luxury cruises, customized vacations and food & wine inspired journeys.  Based in San Francisco, and with clients throughout the USA, his business is focused on 24/7 personalized service to the sophisticated leisure and business traveler.  His personal  relationships with the world’s top hotels, cruise lines and local agencies often allows for exclusive amenities and VIP status. 

 If you’d like to learn more about luxury travel and our services, please contact Josh Friedman Luxury Travel in San Francisco’s Financial District via phone at 415.987.0372  or email: josh [at] joshfriedmantravel [dot] com. Follow him on Twitter and Facebook, too.

associated with casto, a virtuoso member and four seasons preferred partner, 500 sansome st., san francisco, ca 94111 cst#1008439-10

Virtuoso Travel Mart 2010 | Report from Bellagio

Every year for the last 20 something, the world’s top travel advisors have met annually with representatives of 5 star hotels, lodges, cruise lines and local speciality travel companies around the world. I attended this year’s event which just ended Thursday evening at Bellagio & Aria in Las Vegas.

Advisors and suppliers learn from each other and pass on their new learning to clients and/or to improve their products and services. All are members of Virtuoso, a by invitation only marketing group representing the creme de la creme of the travel industry. And quite a group it is.

But I think even more important, for me as a luxury travel advisor, is the one to one connection with these suppliers. Personalized luxury travel is different from mass market travel. If Joe Traveler books a one week Mexico package at a 3 star, or even a 5 star resort, they’re just another body filling a bed. Granted, the experience at a 5 star resort will be better, but nonetheless, there’s no personal connection between the traveler and the resort’s management.

However, when I meet a supplier at Travel Mart, or in my office, or at their hotel, and I get to know them, and they me — then that degree of separation from this traveler (my client) to the supplier is closed.

Meet some of my travel partners and see what I mean:

Guillaume
Take Guillaume from the Connaught Hotel in London. The Connaught is a traditional English hotel, recently refurbished, and a sister property to Claridge’s and the Berkeley. I met Guillaume a year ago when I was invited to stay at Claridge’s where he was the Food and Beverage manager. Now he’s the #2, or the Hotel Manager, at the Connaught. I can guarantee anybody booking that hotel with me that Guillaume will assure them a very memorable stay there. If on business, he’ll make sure his staff has simplified all necessary arrangements for a productive visit. And if for leisure, he’ll be sure theater tickets, restaurant reservations, guides and the like are handled beyond the guests expectations. Sure, Guillaume is a great guy, but the one-to-one cannot be underestimated.

Maita
Maita owns a local travel company in Argentina and arranges the most amazing customized luxury vacations of her home country (and neighboring ones) you can imagine. She’s put together 1) a 3 week vacation for a single adventure traveler who wanted to hike glaciers, explore Iguazu beyond the norm and climb mountains, 2) a 10 day customized & escorted tour of Chile and Argentina for a California winery club focusing on gourmet dining (in the Andes no less) and wine tastings and 3) a pre-cruise exploration of Buenos Aires with tango lessons, private guides and a day at an Estancia.

David
David is an Englishman now living in Hong Kong and owns, like Maita, a small company focused on providing the visitor to HK or China with a visit they’ll always fondly remember. He’s arranged pre and post cruise stays for my clients in Beijing, Shanghai & Hong Kong. But beyond the usual, because my clients have already been to these places before, he suggests places and activities (i.e. Jewish Shanghai, Hangzhou, Lamma), and the latest hotels. Do you know the Upper House on Hong Kong Island?

Christophe, Aiko, Peter & the Dorchester Collection
Christophe is the Director of Sales and Marketing of Le Meurice in Paris. It’s one of the the hotels in Paris, along with their sister property, Plaza Athenee (you can meet Peter there). They also own the Hotel Principe di Savoia in Milan (Antonio), and of course their namesake, The Dorchester in London (Louise), and several more in the UK and USA. Kings, queens and my clients love these hotels. And so did Carrie Bradshaw for a few days. And I can guarantee that this team of amazing hotel professionals will do whatever it takes to ensure that your stay in their hotel, and in their city will be perfect. A Virtuoso saying — it’s the power of one to one.