Uniworld Boutique River Cruises spoiled an intimate group of VIP trade partners, friends and select media in Sydney last night with a beauteous Bordeaux-inspired dinner at Rockpool Bar & Grill.
The ‘Night in Bordeaux’ themed dinner was an excuse to celebrate a highly fruitful 2023 for the luxury river cruise line, which not only experienced a bumper crop of guests this season in Europe, but collected multiple awards across the industry, from ATIA’s National Travel Industry Award for Most Popular River Cruise Operator, two dual wins last week in Signature Luxury Travel & Style‘s 2023 Luxury Cruise Awards, for Best River Cruise Operator in both Europe and the Rest of the World.
“We’ve had an outstanding 2023 and without you, our key partners, we couldn’t have succeeded like we have and for that we are so grateful to you,” said a humble Alice Ager, Managing Director Australia/NZ for Uniworld. “While it’s been a year of recovery, the results have absolutely exceeded our expectations – we couldn’t have done it without you.”
“We’ve all put so much into the industry and cruise in particular, and the luxury space – it just went from strength to strength and we’re just so proud of the mutual success of the year and of our relationships and of our partnerships. Thank you for your incredible support,” Ager said.
The dinner also provided a platform for Patrick Benhamou, former long-standing Atout France Regional Manager, Australia-turned entrepreneur and head of fledgling venture events company, Show7, the opportunity to provide homage to Business Publishing Group‘s publisher, Bruce Piper.
Piper was last night welcomed as a ‘Friend of the Commanderie de Bordeaux’ in Sydney, in recognition of his recent “passion for Bordeaux” following a voyage with Uniworld aboard S.S. Bon Voyage from the gateway city to the Southwest of France.
Benhamou, who was responsible for the curation of the event and the sumptuous Rockpool menu, also welcomed the Australian owners — Glenda and Frank Hampton Kalyk — of Chateau Picoron, a vineyard in the Gironda region of France, to talk about their personal experience with running an organic vineyard in Bordeaux, and offer guests a unique wine-tasting experience.
Lead image, from left are Sophie Treasure, Virtuoso; Alice Ager, Uniworld; Danielle Galloway, FCTG Luxury; Ally Sparr, FCTG Independent and Jen Pagett, Uniworld.