Best of the Best Honored with 2014 WAVE Awards

Best of the Best Honored with 2014 WAVE Awards

FOR IMMEDIATE MEDIA ATTENTION

CONTACT:
Lisa Frobisher, TravelAge West Marketing Manager 310-954-2514 [email protected]

Best of the Best Honored with 2014 WAVE Awards
From TravelAge West
More than 5,000 votes from travel agents were cast this year

LOS ANGELES — More than 150 companies, individuals and destinations were celebrated by the readers of TravelAge West as part of the TravelAge West WAVE (Western Agents’ Votes of Excellence) Awards held June 5 in Santa Monica, Calif., at the Hotel Casa del Mar in Santa Monica, Calif. Honorees were recognized in 62 categories that spanned the cruise, tour operator, airline, hotel and resort, rail vacation, travel insurance and destination travel fields. The annual awards gave travel agents in the Western U.S. the opportunity to recognize the outstanding qualities and services of their travel supplier partners. In addition, top travel agents were honored in four categories as part of the 2014 Trendsetters Awards, also presented at the gala. Categories included: Best Use of Social Media, Upward Bound Rock Star Agent Under 40, Best Group Booking Sales Effort, and Industry Activist - Notable Achievements in Support of Travel Agents. More than 5,000 travel agent professionals throughout the 14 Western states and readers of TravelAge West voted on the best-of-the-best from a list of Editor’s Pick award recipients that were chosen after careful review by TravelAge West Editor-in-Chief Kenneth Shapiro and the editorial team of TravelAge West. Review methods included product analysis, on-site visits, a survey of a select group of travel agents and online research. “As the top travel trade publication in the West, it’s important that TravelAge West acknowledge the suppliers that go above and beyond for travel agents,” said Shapiro. “These awards are a lot of work for our staff, but we remain committed to doing whatever it takes to honor the travel companies that lead the way.” And, again this year, TravelAge West awarded their ‘Excellence in Leadership’ Award  honoring an individual who, in the course of their careers in travel and tourism, consistently have demonstrated leadership and insight, effected change or innovation and made extraordinary contributions to both organizations and the industry at large. The 2014 TravelAge West Excellence in Leadership Award honoree is Vicki L. Freed, Senior Vice President, Sales and Trade Support & Service of Royal Caribbean International. At the black-tie event, guests dined on a four-course meal while being treated to a multimedia presentation of the award recipients. “These awards identify the industry’s finest,” said Bruce Shulman, Publisher of TravelAge West. “The professionals who read and rely on TravelAge West have the expertise to select those businesses and destinations and hotels that provide a higher level of service to their clients. Our readers can be confident that these winners represent the best this industry has to offer.” 

TravelAge West will feature WAVE Awards coverage in the July 7, 2014 issue.

A list of this year’s WAVE Award winners, as well as a list of Trendsetter Award Recipients, follows.

TravelAge West (www.travelagewest.com) has been serving the travel industry for over 45 years as a leading source of travel industry news and product information. Read by travel agents, travel suppliers and travel industry professionals, the publication has a circulation of 22,000 in 14 Western United States. For more information on TravelAge West, contact Lisa Frobisher (310-954-2514); [email protected]).

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2014 WAVE Award Recipients

Best Airline, Domestic
Delta Air Lines


Best Economy Class, Domestic
JetBlue

Best Business/First-Class, Domestic
Virgin America

Best Airline, International
Singapore Airlines

Cruise Line with the Highest Client Satisfaction
Crystal Cruises

Cruise Line with the Highest Client Satisfaction|
Princess Cruises

Best Family Accommodations/Experience
Disney Cruise Line

Best Kids’ Program
Disney Cruise Line

Best Shore Excursions
Regent Seven Seas Cruises

Cruise Line Providing the Best Travel Agent Support
Royal Caribbean International

Best New Ship
Royal Princess
Princess Cruises

Best Onboard Entertainment
Royal Caribbean International

Best Onboard Dining
Crystal Cruises

Best Onboard Dining
Celebrity Cruises

Best Refurbished Ship
Celebrity Constellation, Celebrity Cruises

Best Overall Cruise Line for River Cruising  
Viking River Cruises

River Cruise Line Providing the Best Travel Agent Support
Viking River Cruises

Best New Ship
Viking Longship Bragi
Viking River Cruises

Best Staterooms
AmaWaterways

Best Onboard Dining
AmaWaterways

Best North American Rail Vacation Provider
Rocky Mountaineer

Tour Operator Providing the Best Travel Agent Support
Globus Family of Brands

Best Tour Operator, Escorted
Globus Family of Brands

Best Tour Operator, FIT
Travel Impressions

Best Tour Operator for Adventure
G Adventures

Best Tour Operator - Australia, New Zealand, South Pacific
Pleasant Holidays

Best Tour Operator, Hawaii
Pleasant Holidays

Best Tour Operator, Mexico
Apple Vacations

Best Tour Operator, USA/Canada
Tauck

Best Tour Operator, Europe
Trafalgar

Best Tour Operator, Asia
Pacific Delight Tours

Best Tour Operator, Africa
Abercrombie & Kent

Best Tour Operator, Middle East
IsramWorld

Best Tour Operator, Central/South America
Globus Family of Brands

Best Tour Operator, Caribbean
Apple Vacations

Car Rental Company Providing the Best Travel Agent Support
Enterprise Rent-A-Car

Car Rental Company Providing the Highest Client Satisfaction
Hertz Rent-a-Car

Best New Resort or Major Renovation, Mexico
Secrets Aura Cozumel

Best New Resort or Major Renovation, Caribbean}
Beaches Turks & Caicos 

Best Resort for Weddings, Mexico
Zoetry Paraiso de la Bonita

Best Resort for Weddings, Caribbean
Sandals Whitehouse European Village & Spa

Best Hotel Chain, Europe
InterContinental Hotels Group

Best Hotel Chain, Hawaii
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Hawaii

Best All-Inclusive Hotel Chain, Mexico
Palace Resorts

Best All-Inclusive Hotel Chain, Caribbean
Sandals Resorts International

Best Luxury Hotel Brand
Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts

Best Hotel Brand, USA
Marriott International

Hotel/Resort Chain Providing the Best Travel Agent Support
Starwood Hotels & Resorts 

Best of the West: Best Destination for a Wellness Vacation
Arizona

Destination with the Highest Client Satisfaction, Europe
Great Britain

Destination with the Highest Client Satisfaction, Asia
Thailand

Favorite Three-Night Destination to Sell
Las Vegas

Best Destination for Adventure, Mexico
Cancun/Riviera Maya Region

Best Beach Destination for a Romance Vacation
Tahiti

Destination with the Highest Client Satisfaction, USA
Hawaii

Best Travel Insurance Company
Travel Guard

Tourism Board Providing the Best Travel Agent Support
Hawaii Visitors & Convention Bureau

WRITE-IN CATEGORIES:

Favorite Individual Hotel Sales Representative
Diane Fraser
Aston Hotels & Resorts

Favorite Individual River Cruise Sales Representative
Michael Weldon
Viking River Cruises 

Favorite Individual Tour Operator Sales Representative
David Ryan
Classic Vacations

Favorite Individual Cruise Sales Representative
Tami Louis
Regent Seven Seas Cruises

TravelAge West 2014 Trendsetter Award Recipients

Best Group Booking Sales Effort
Winner: Montrose Travel
Runner Up: Daniela Harrison, Avenues of the World Travel

Upward Bound, RockStar Agent Under 40
Winner: Kristen Bentz, WMPH Vacations
Runner Up: Andres Zuleta & Christina Soto, Japan Boutique Travel Company

Industry Activist, Notable Achievements in Support of Travel Agents
Winner: Caitlin Murphy, Millennials in Travel
Runner Up: Paula Mitchell Manning, OSSN

Best Use of Social Media
Winner: Katelyn O’Shaughnessy, TripScope
Runner Up: Gabriella Latini, Plaza Travel

TravelAge West Excellence in Leadership Award
Vicki L. FreedSenior Vice President, Sales and Trade Support & Service
Royal Caribbean International