Virtuoso Life - September/October 2017 - 72
Ian Swain on Australia's wonders, trips of a lifetime, and his one tech holdout.
My job: President and owner,
Swain Destinations - a U.S.based tour operator specializing
in customized travel to Australia,
New Zealand, Africa, and more.
Years in the industry: 30.
What's new for Swain Destinations this year: We're adding
more exclusive experiences and
adventures to our destinations,
from chartering a boat in Sydney
Harbour on New Year's Eve to
interacting with orphaned rhinos
(1) on safari in South Africa.
Australia should be on everyone's list because: It's the most
dreamed-about destination in
the world, home to incredible
wildlife, world-renowned wine,
and, of course, the sights: the
Great Barrier Reef (2), Uluru,
and the Sydney Opera House.
Three items always in
my carry-on: A BlackBerry
(yes - and I plan on being the
last person to have one), a
power cord, and as little else
The most extravagant
experience I've planned for
a traveler ... A six-week adventure through New Zealand and
Australia, which included a helicopter drop-off on Aoraki Mount
Cook (3), a hike up 2,000 feet,
and then a helicopter ride back
to the lodge's front lawn.
... and the most extravagant one I've booked for
myself: My 50th birthday
celebration at Amansara (4) in
Cambodia. My family and I put
on a puppet show for the local
villagers, then had a private,
candelit dinner in a thousandyear-old temple.
My favorite movie about
travel: The Secret Life of Walter
Mitty (5). It inspired me to take
my family to Iceland.
"I love the approach into a destination from the plane,
when I get that first glimpse of a city's icons. The idea that travel
can bring you all over the world is still my 'wow' moment."
V I RT U O S O L I F E
(IAN SWAIN) KEVIN J. MIYAZAKI/GROOMING BY SONG LOPEZ, (GREAT BARRIER REEF) MAERIE/GETTY IMAGES,
(MOUNT COOK) MJ_PROTOTYPE/GETTY IMAGES, (RHINO) SIMONEEMANPHOTOGRAPHY/GETTY IMAGES