Kerry Sear

Discovering the World – and New Friends

Being open to adventure isn’t just about seeing new places; it’s also about making connections to the people who are along for the journey.

“Why wouldn’t we do something like this?” That’s the question long-time Four Seasons guests Marc and MaryKay finally asked themselves, MaryKay says, after a few weeks of studying the brochure for a Four Seasons Private Jet International Intrigue itinerary in 2018. “By the time we made up our minds to do it, the trip was sold out.” But they knew that when one passenger list closes, another may open. When they discovered the 2018 Timeless Encounters itinerary, they didn’t hesitate to reserve their spots.

“We knew the attention to detail that Four Seasons provides,” Marc says. “The small things are not overlooked. It was easy to assume that the Private Jet experience would be the same.”

 “I’m in awe of the wildlife we saw in the Serengeti.”

“I’m in awe of the wildlife we saw in the Serengeti.”

-MaryKay, Four Seasons Private Jet traveller

Before the trip, they had one tiny bit of apprehension about travelling for a month with a group of people they didn’t know. That thought disappeared as soon as they met their fellow travellers at a welcome reception at Four Seasons Resort Hualalai. “It was exciting to meet people from all over the world wanting the same experience,” Marc says.

As the trip progressed, their commonalities created opportunities for connection. “We found ourselves with the same group of people over and over again because of the similar interests in the particular excursions we chose,” MaryKay says.

“After travelling the world with people and spending more than 38 hours on a plane together, we have experienced things that we now share with each other. After you’ve been on a trip like this, you truly have something in common.”

It was exciting to meet people from all over the world wanting the same experience.

Kyoto’s impressive cityscapes contain many pristine gardens along with centuries-old temples and shrines.

Bora Bora was a highlight for MaryKay, who loved the snorkelling, and for Marc, who loved being in the moment: “To experience the blue waters and all the fun activities was breathtaking – to ride jet skis in a downpour, exhilarating!” Other favourite experiences included climbing the Sydney Harbour Bridge, sandboarding in Dubai and having a personal cooking class with a Four Seasons chef in Bali after shopping for ingredients with him in the market.

The relaxed, home-away-from-home atmosphere of the Private Jet also fostered a sense of connection, when desired, while also providing time to restore. After each exciting destination, Marc says, “we felt so comfortable there, winding down and re-energizing for the next stop.”

That time to reset was important to Marc and MaryKay, who didn’t want to miss a thing. “You can be as busy or as relaxed as you want during the journey,” she says. “We chose to be very busy at every location, taking in as much as we possibly could.”

 “We are used to flying private, and the Four Seasons Private Jet experience far exceeded anything we have ever encountered.“

“We are used to flying private, and the Four Seasons Private Jet experience far exceeded anything we have ever encountered.“

-MaryKay, Four Seasons Private Jet traveller

The Jet, MaryKay agrees, “was absolutely spectacular.” The spacious seats, the pillows and throws, the crew’s warm greetings and attention to detail, and the meals were all exceptional. “We lovingly named the Jet the ‘Mother Ship’ after returning from the smaller aircraft we went in and out of Bora Bora on,” she says. “Seeing that sleek black jet waiting for us was such a delight. Boarding it never got old.”

Since the trip, Marc and MaryKay have gotten together with their former across-the-aisle “seat mates” several times when they’ve visited their new friends’ city for business. In fact, it was dinner with these friends that prompted Marc and MaryKay to take a second Private Jet trip. As their friends shared their excitement about seeing gorillas in Rwanda on the World of Adventure itinerary, Marc and MaryKay decided it was finally time to book the International Intrigue trip, this time scheduled for early 2020.

“You can be as busy or as relaxed as you want during the journey.”

Four Seasons Private Jet Travellers can opt to take local cooking classes in multiple destinations.

When the couple set out on their second Private Jet journey, their only worry this time was that it wouldn’t live up to the previous one. But “the second trip was just as wonderful and impressive as the first,” MaryKay says.

On this journey, Marc was most looking forward to visiting Japan, and its culture and food were indeed a highlight. Snorkelling in the Maldives, a cooking lesson in Vietnam and seeing the Serengeti were also unforgettable. “I’m in awe of the wildlife we saw in the Serengeti,” MaryKay says. “I had been looking forward to this stop since signing up for the trip. It was more than I hoped for, as we saw everything I wanted to see – elephants, zebras, giraffes, lions, hippos and warthogs!

Marc was most surprised by how much he enjoyed St. Petersburg. And MaryKay found an unexpected delight too: “the best colour and haircut I’ve ever had, in Budapest.”

Now the couple has booked a third Four Seasons Private Jet trip. “We are used to flying private, and the Four Seasons Private Jet experience far exceeded anything we have ever encountered, from ease of travel to personalized service,” MaryKay says. “What I really enjoy is the private and insider access to the places we visit. You don’t have that luxury when travelling on your own.”

Photography courtesy Marc and MaryKay (giraffe, Fushimi Inari Shrine, overwater villa)

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