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Hi! My name is Julie Craven-Benneddeb. I am a flight attendant with American Airlines in Miami
Since becoming 1 of 4 winners in the largest Airline Employee Competition in the world, and returning from the most incredible experience of my life I simply had to write my first blog!
I hope you like it, and that you can go on to win the next round!
OMG! I have NEVER won ANYTHING before in my LIFE...
My surprise adventure all started when I received a telephone call from Staff Travel Voyage to say I had won a 4 day adventure on the idyllic Mediterranean Island of Mallorca with helicopters, luxury hotels, wine tasting and a luxury yacht! Eventually the news settled in and within 2 weeks I was jetting off from Miami with my friend Yarid in tow... follow my adventure below!
Thanks to everyone who looked after us, we felt like celebrity royal rock stars! Be sure to check the links to our new found friends for when you decide to visit this delightful Mediterranean 'Sunshine Island' as it is known locally.
Airline Staff can register with Staff Travel Voyage FREE for Employee Travel Benefits ... and be automatically entered into Free Vacation competitions every month!
Click here to register Free (you must be airline staff)
Would you believe our flight to Spain was initially canceled departing Miami with an horrific thunderstorm and crew going out of hours! Being a bold AA flight attendant I never give up, and managed to quickly re route via London. Staff Travel Voyage jumped in and arranged an express limousine and champagne with chauffeur service Driven UK so we could make the tight connection between London's airports! Phew! Later that day we arrived at Mallorca's Palma Airport, and were met true VIP Style once again. OMG we were approached air side!, immediately fast tracked through customs and transported via the most luxurious Range Rover Sport with (more) onboard champagne to the amazing 5 star
Fontsanta Thermal Spa and Wellness Resort.
WOW, what a hotel. We seriously chilled out right away, had a wonderful dinner at the Cassai Restaurant in nearby quaint village of Ses Salines and caught up with some sleep. The next day we enjoyed a complete day of relaxation, with thermal bath treatments, massage pampering and gourmet lunch! The hotel and grounds were absolutely beautiful, if you ever visit Mallorca be sure to check this hotel out. It sits above the only natural 'thermal waters' in the Balearic Islands with wonderful views of the countryside. Our room was gorgeous with its own private garden!
Late in the afternoon another prestigious vehicle came to collect us and whisk us to the seriously chic Cala D'or Marina. Here we boarded the yacht for the first time and enjoyed a cocktail whilst cruising around to the crystal clear waters of Cala Ferrera bay and the Robinson Club Cala Serena. We dropped anchor, enjoyed (another) pre-sunset cocktail (it doesn't get dark here until 10pm!), and were then taken ashore in the yacht tender to the side of the rocks for the most bizarre 'celebrity style yacht check-in' by hotel staff Mandy and co - in front of all the hotel guests lapping up the last hour of sunshine!
An experience at Robinson Club Cala Serena is unforgetable! I only wish we had more time to fully enjoy all the facilities. Located in a beautiful bay, raised slightly above sea level on a small peninsula, this beautiful green resort was an absolute delight. A Tapas dinner and a couple of hours exploring and finding our way around our gorgeous suite and it was time for bed. The set up and position of the hotel is awesome. A stay here for those visiting Mallorca is also a must.
After a quick nights sleep we woke for sumptuous breakfast, a chance to explore the hotel and its grounds, and then repositioned ourself on the rocks for an express check out and to await the arrival of our private luxury yacht for the day!
Our very own Private Luxury Yacht Cruise!
We could hardly sleep waiting for this day, and couldn't believe it even exceeded our expectations. The million $ yacht was amazing, fully air-conditioned with 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms and we were treated like complete royalty. The day is a bit of a blur I'm afraid, you will see Yarid and I holding a glass of the local favorite Champagne Aperol Spritz in the video of almost every shot! Oh and I couldn't believe the yachting scene, there were so many of them anchored in all the crystal clear water bays. I am sure we saw paparazzi on several occasions hiding in the rocks looking for someone famous!
This glorious day was mostly spent idly cruising from bay to bay in a dream, dropping anchor and attempting daredevil jumps from the yacht to the sea and chilling out in the sun. We visited Cala Mondrago, Cala Sa Nau and Porto Colom, it was absolutely awesome and we will never ever forget it. Sadly it was time to cruise back into Cala D'or Marina, but another surprise was in store. We were to spend the night on board the yacht in the marina and wake up to the sounds of sailing yacht sails whistling in the breeze! We had a wonderful meal at the Noa Thai Restaurant gazing at the many yachts tied up, and then blissfully fell asleep on board our private yacht.
This day was literally insane ... what we remember of it again! After some lovely warm croissants and coffee we were met from the yacht and were whisked away in a BMW limousine to the Son Alegre Bodega's Organic vineyard for some late morning wine tasting. How bizarre, and probably a bit early for wine tasting, but we got stuck in and savored some of the loveliest wines we have ever tasted accompanied by a delicious spread of cheeses and hams delicacies ~ whilst listening to a private live performance by Juan Reyes play his Spanish guitar! They even bottled a magnum of their top red wine for us to take away! Such lovely people, and another must visit.
After an hour or so and our hosts insisting we try every type of wine they had produced over the past decade, the roar of a helicopter overhead was heard as our next mode of luxurious celeb style transport came in to land right next to the vineyard! Surprises just kept coming ~ and to transport us the 500 metres to the helicopter landing site, an ancient horse and carriage arrived! We all clambered aboard and waited for the horse to stop munching from a low hanging bunch of grapes and then off we went went down a country road!
Our pilot Cedric from Rotorflug, and what has to be Mallorca's most accommodating and friendly heli-air service company on the island, strapped us in (yes we were a little nervous but the previous hour or so of wine tasting numbed us for the most part!). I had been in a helicopter once before, but it was Yarids first time. OMG it was both crazy and amazing. We sawed up quickly into the sky over the vineyards and and local villages and headed off west over the Tramantana mountain range to the town and port of Soller. Honestly, it was a truly spectacular 30 minute experience and the views were nothing short of breathtaking! Another experience I will not forget in a hurry. Rotorflug operate an airline employee rate 'standby' service if you are ever visiting the island and want to experience what we loved so much. They will let you jump aboard if they have an empty sector and pay a nominal rate.
I even got to fly the heli too! Captain Cedric and Yarid were looking a little nervous but Ced said I did just great!. After our whirlwind flight we landed at the Ca Nai Finca in the mountain village of Soller and rounded off our amazing vacation with a gourmet lunch by the pool! Another little gem and gorgeous little converted rural farmhouse with the most spectacular views....Amazing food and atmosphere, what a delightful place! We then we waved farewell to all our new found friends and sat down for a moment...what had just happened?!
Airline and Travel Staff Globally