Unique, deluxe and “off the beaten path” vacations for those who know what they want but are time-poor. Co-Founder Naomi Sheehy talks Ireland Luxury Travel tours.
An Irish owned company based in the south coast of Cork, in Skibbereen. Ireland Luxury Travel is a specialist travel company working with clients all over the world who travel to Ireland for leisure and business.
Their advisers have vast experience and local knowledge of Ireland which allow them to design a travel experience packed with “off the beaten path” sightseeing, genuine culture, and history, together with fantastic Irish food experiences. The trip if a lifetime is what they specialize in. Ireland Luxury Travel takes the work out of planning. And in our opinion, their trips sound like a dream.
Below Co-Founder of Ireland Luxury Travel tells IrishCentral all about their wonderful bespoke tours of Ireland:
Who is your average customer?
We have a very varied clientele. We have families traveling with young children, newly retired people going on their trip of a lifetime, and multigenerational groups traveling together often exploring their Irish heritage.
They can come from all over the world, but I suppose due to the Irish diaspora in the US and Canada, we do have the majority of our leisure travelers coming from North America, Australia, and New Zealand.
With our corporate travel, we work with people from mainland Europe, the Middle East, and Japan.
We’d heard that some of your clients fly into Ireland on their own planes. Is that true?
Yes, we work with people who have access to their company’s corporate jet and or have their own private aircraft. These people are time-poor and so often cram a two-week vacation into four days. We have to manage every detail of the trip, so it goes smoothly with no time-wasting or mistakes. There is a very high expectation of service at this level.
Have you worked with famous clients?
Confidentiality is our number one priority. Perhaps it stems from my training as a lawyer, but our client’s privacy is assured when traveling with Ireland luxury Travel. However, we have had a retired politician, a famous US baseball family, financial consultants and high up military officials.
These types of clients are articulate and used to managing huge numbers of people and live under a lot of stress. Our job is to help them unwind, relax and enjoy Ireland. Our aim is that they go home revived and rejuvenated. Ireland is great for that.
Your tours are all about luxury? How do you choose where your clients eat, sleep and visit?
Luxury means something different for everybody. Our job is to figure out what that is. Luxury can be a cozy farmhouse guest house with traditional cooking from produce sourced locally.
Or for some, it is the best city guide who has a Ph.D. in Irish history and is passionate about Dublin’s historic characters. Ideally, I like to contrast the stays, so the client gets to see all aspects of Ireland. You can get a little castle blind if all you do is castle hotels.
I speak to our clients over the phone to get to know what they like, what are their interests and also where else they have traveled. This helps in my planning because you can tell immediately what worked in the past and what they hope to experience when they come to Ireland.
We tailor the itinerary to what we believe the client to like, they are part of the process and come back with their input, ideas and friend recommendations. We work hard to interweave all this into a unique trip tailored for them.
What does your average tour look like? Why are they different? Why do they stand apart?
Our tours stand apart as they are personal. We route our clients to the town were their family immigrated from and arrange a genealogist to prepare research on their heritage. We offer local guides who are archaeologists, historians or specialist hikers to bring the client deeper into their special interest. We stay away from the tourist trap and help experience real Ireland.
We have a network of guides now that we can call on to bring local color into the trip. Our clients become immersed in Ireland.
Do you find that more and more people are opting for escorted, chauffeured tours?
Yes. There are many reasons, and of course, driving in a new country on the wrong side of the road can be nerve-racking, but I believe there is more to it.
Our drivers are professional tour guides, and this brings the local knowledge with you each day of the trip. They know Ireland so well and all the best places to have lunch, and the must-see spots that are of the beaten path.
Where are your most popular traveler destinations?
The top five places I am asked for are Dublin, Cliffs of Moher, Galway, Cork, and Belfast.
Some people have a detailed knowledge of Ireland’s geography, but most just want to see some of the highlights along with a few cute quiet places that still has that romantic Ireland atmosphere.
The most popular tour on Irish Studio Travel is the “Irish Castle Tours”. Do you find the Irish castles are a major draw?
Definitely. I can completely understand the interest. Castles are unique to northern Europe, and in Ireland, we have hundreds of them in ruin, left untouched. The romance of Irish clans warring with each other, ancient traditions and Celtic culture are fascinating to most people. When you come this far to Ireland, it is a shame to miss out on all that.
What’s been the strangest request you’ve had?
I was asked once if I could arrange an Irish wife. But I am sure he was joking.