We’re Back Out There!
Rewind back to 2020 when borders closed, rescheduling and pre-planning efforts seemed futile, and to be frank – no one had much of an idea of what was going on. There was a sudden rush to online experiences. Instagram live talks were everywhere, we were seeing endless links to webinars and virtual panel discussions, at-home travel experiences, and so on. If you didn’t have a rock-steady internet connection, you’d suffer! This reactive pivot to the virtual world which many adopted was admirable, but we decided otherwise. We’d instead use the time to pause, listen, knuckle down, craft, and ensure that when travel got the green light, we’d be ready to get our clients out there again. We knew we would be the first ones back delivering real, tangible, creative experiences. It’s what we believe in and what our business has always been built on.
2021 welcomed the birth of søster – our all-encompassing studio which delivers creative, strategic and experiential projects and campaigns for some of the world’s most innovative and distinguished brands. Amidst the excitement, and perhaps the most promising part of it all, was that the green light came, as did the projects, and we were finally able to get clients travelling again!
We had to be diligent, creative and strategic in order to deliver on our promise of unique travel experiences during these tricky times. Crucial to making this all happen was having customers who believed in us and partners who were willing to take bold risks with us. With a seamless domestic trip complete, we then sent small client groups of 4-6 people to Italy and Spain throughout August and September. The third part of our comeback, following on from the success of the UK and Europe, came in November and involved sending three more groups – simultaneously! – to iconic destinations around the globe.
A 20-strong team headed to the magnificent Palm Springs desert to get a taste of the Hollywood celebrity lifestyle. They were spoilt with California fresh cuisine, an immersion into the incredible world of Mid-Century Modern art and architecture, invigorating hikes through otherworldly landscapes, and plenty of down-time to take it all in and lounge by the pool at the Parker Palm Springs.
Further down in Peru, another client trip saw a group embark on ATV excursions, spend time on a working farm learning about local produce, perfect their ceviche with cooking lessons, explore the legendary historic sanctuary of Machu Picchu, and of course, enjoy plenty of Pisco Sours! The third group were whisked away to one of Europe’s most iconic cities – Rome – for a stylish stay at the Hoxton Hotel and a host of quintessentially Italian experiences. They toured the city by Vespa, got their Michelangelo on with painting classes, and devoured some of the city’s most famed dishes.
Having multiple complex projects running simultaneously is second nature to us, but the added layer of complexity which Covid brought meant we had to be particularly diligent, prioritising health and wellbeing above all and ensuring we were 100% Covid safe and secure. All went smoothly and proved to us what we’d known all along – that we didn’t have to move into the virtual world or be hybrid, that we could maintain our stance and ensure our work reflected our passion for truly experiential travel, and eventually come back with a bang.
As we sink our teeth into 2022, team søster continues to grow and we are looking at live work on a monthly basis going forward. We’re busy crafting, creating and strategising detailed plans for global leading brands in the US and Europe and feel excited for what’s to come. All that, and not a single zoom webinar in sight!