SPECIAL REPORT

Smooth Operators

by Victor Chen
18 Jun 2017

Whether it’s a familiar destination that you want to explore with fresh eyes, or a virgin territory that you are venturing into, bespoke is the way to go

You may be headed to a popular destination, but Alex Malcolm will ensure that you see its rarely glimpsed corners. Since founding Jacada Travel in 2008, he has been offering bespoke tours to luxury travelers to many parts of the world. Their offices in London, Hong Kong, and Cape Town create one-of-a-kind experiences matched with end-to-end discreet and attentive service. Luxury accommodation, expert guides on the ground, and local expertise in America, Africa, Asia, Europe, the Polar Regions, and Australasia guarantee that no time is ever wasted or safety and comfort compromised.

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Among Jacada Travel’s latest bespoke offering is the Cape Town Art Tour, created to coincide with the opening of the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa in September. The art tour will take place from September 13 to 17 and showcase Cape Town’s vibrant art scene. An expert art guide will lead the tour of some of the city’s best and most interesting art galleries and studios where visitors will get a chance to meet the curators and artists in person, and experience a behind-the-scenes, in-depth look into the city’s art scene.

Although the special itinerary is created to complement the activities surrounding the opening weekend of the Zeitz MOCAA Museum, Jacada Travel will offer the tour year-round.

The tour begins with a leisurely exploration of Cape Town on 13 September. The following day, guests will visit the Bronze Age Foundry (an art gallery and foundry that specializes in bronze sculpture casting), The Stevenson Gallery, What if The World Studio, and end the day at The Lionel Smit’s gallery, where the artist will be present.

Meanwhile, Exotic Voyages aims to take clients on what they call once-in-a-lifetime travel experiences to three new destinations. The 17-year-old tour operator has expanded its luxury global portfolio with 18 new completely customizable itineraries — six each in Oman, India, and Japan.

Conducted by expert English-speaking guides, all scheduled tours are private and highly personalized. Guests can expect to stay in properties renowned for exceptional quality, style, location and service, including five-star hotels like The Chedi Muscat in Oman, The Raj Palace in Jaipur, and Japan’s Park Hotel Tokyo.

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In Oman, guests can watch the sun set over the rolling sand dunes of the Wahiba Desert before turning in for a night of ‘glamping’ in Bedouin camel hair tents. They may also swim in the Wadi Shab natural pools and waterfalls.

Meanwhile, in Rajasthan guests will be able to explore the Ranthambore National Park to spot leopards, tigers, hyenas, sloth bears, crocodiles, and chameleons in a jungle safari. A private excursion of India’s ‘Golden Triangle’, which includes a special tour of the Taj Mahal and the Agra Fort, is also on the itinerary.

A nighttime walking tour of Kyoto’s Gion district, as geishas weave their way around town to work, awaits those who are on the Japan tour. Another delightful activity that is planned is watching sumo wrestlers’ morning training session, followed by an afternoon of sake tasting in Tokyo.

Exotic Voyages is headquartered in Vietnam, with offices in the US and UK. It specializes in tailor-made adventures to 13 countries in Asia and the Middle East, including Vietnam, Thailand, Bhutan, Laos, Cambodia, China, India, Sri Lanka, Maldives, Myanmar, Oman, the UAE, and Japan.

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Designer holidays to countries spanning six continents are a Lightfoot Travel specialty. The tour operator takes pride in offering highly original trips that are inspired, inventive, and tailored to requirements. Among the highlights of its itineraries are private tours of the finest vineyards and champagne houses in France, a month-long journey through Southeast Asia tracing the origins of the Mekong, multi-country ski safaris through the Alps, and scuba diving expeditions in Raja Ampat – the world’s most biologically diverse region. Its offices Singapore, Hong Kong, and Dubai offer a highly personalized service, and uses only properties that they have personally experienced and would actually patronize.

Its latest holiday is Classic Iran, a rare offering that introduces guests to the highlights of the 2,500-year-old Persian history – from the most important and beautiful mosques and ancient ruins, to the buzzing restaurants of today’s world. The holiday takes guests through ther landmarks of Teheran, the Qur'an Gate and Delgosha Garden in Shiraz, Persepolis and Naqsh-e Rust, Yazd, Isfahan, and Kashan.

As with all Lightfoot Travel holidays, a tour representative and a highly qualified guide will accompany guests from the start to the end of the journey.