Monthly Archives: October 2012

Imex America… and Elton John

C&IT heads to the US for the Boston & Chicago fam trip and Imex America with Fairmont, Virgin Atlantic and Allied PRA……

DAY FOUR

The next morning, we meet up with the second of Fairmont’s fam trip groups, whose trip to California included a cable car tour of San Francisco, wine-tasting at Chateau St Jean and St Francis Wineries, and visits to Fairmont Hotel in San Francisco, the Fairmont Sonoma Mission Inn & Spa and the Fairmont Miramar in Santa Monica.

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Day three: Boston, Chicago and Vegas in a day

C&IT heads to the US for the Boston & Chicago fam trip and Imex America with Fairmont, Virgin Atlantic and Allied PRA…

DAY THREE

At 6am we depart for a short flight to Chicago, where we are met by Allied PRA’s John. The transfer into town can take up to two hours in rush hour but thankfully our journey is far shorter and we learn a little about the history of Chicago on the way – including the fact it was completely rebuilt following a fire in the 1800s. First stop is the Chicago Cut Steakhouse for mid-morning coffee and pastries. From here, we head to Swissôtel Chicago, which is connected to other hotels in area connected by a series of underground tunnels, for warm apple cocktails.
We take a tour of the hotel, which includes great views of city and Lake Michigan from the 43rd floor, before walking to the Fairmont Chicago, Millennium Park for a site tour and lunch.
This is followed by a fabulous Segway tour of Chicago – the perfect way to explore the heart of the city in a couple of hours. Highlights include photogenic views of the skyscrapers against the clear blue sky, and riding past historic buildings such as the Field Museum and Shedd Aquarium. Time for a quick drink before our second flight to the third city of the day.
We’ve been up around 20 hours but Vegas, lit up like a Christmas bauble, still makes an exciting first impression. The transfer to the Palazzo, where our group will stay during Imex America 2012, is short, and soon we’re checking in.

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Day two: Boston’s land and water highlights

C&IT heads to the US for the Boston & Chicago fam trip and Imex America with Fairmont, Virgin Atlantic and Allied PRA…

DAY TWO

We meet for a private breakfast at the hotel before embarking on a Duck Tour, with lively commentary on Boston history from the Jack-Blackesque Bogey. We take in land sights and venues including Mooo steakhouse, King’s Chapel and the Stock Exchange, heading through the historic North End district, Charlestown and Cambridge, before splashing onto the Charles River. The tour ends at the pub which originally inspired TV show Cheers – time for a group photo.
From here, we take a tour of a private home in Beacon Hill, an upmarket and historical area of Boston. Next stop is the Fairmont Battery Wharf, a four-year-old property set in a campus of buildings next to the North End.
Time for lunch and a site inspection before our North End tour. Our guide Michele takes us through the neighbourhood, where the large Italian population makes it a foodie haven, with around 100 eateries in less than one square mile. Highlights include trying delicious macaroons at Maria’s and “genuine” olive oil (who knew olive oil fraud was such a wide spread issue!).
Then back to the hotel for a fabulous spa treatment before we walk back into the North End for dinner at the Four-Diamond-rated Mamma Maria. After a lively meal, where we use our newfound Italian knowledge to order bitter amaro shots, we decide on early nights all round ahead of our 6am departure the next day.

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Imex America: upgraded to a great start

C&IT heads to the US for the Boston & Chicago fam trip and Imex America with Fairmont, Virgin Atlantic and Allied PRA…

DAY ONE

Our trip starts in style, when our group meets at Heathrow and learns we’ve been upgraded to Virgin’s Upper Class, kicking off with speedy security and a trip to amazing Heathrow Clubhouse. Here, we order lunch, where only the slightly undersized cutlery betrays the illusion you’re in a smart restaurant, before a 15-min massage and cocktail.
Time flies and too soon we’re on the plane for a seven-hour flight to Boston. The Upper Class cabin is as good as the lounge, and most of us resist napping in favour of enjoying the movies, lunch and afternoon tea and hanging out in the onboard bar. At Boston, we’re welcomed by DMC Allied PRA and it’s a short coach ride to the Fairmont Copley Plaza, next to Boston Public Library.
We check in and take a tour of the opulent hotel, ending in the Presidential Suite for a buffet-style dinner, relaxing as we fight jetlag.

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