Visiting Oman on a private chartered jet as part of a luxury group tour must be a dream for many. But for a group of elite Brazilian tourists, it was easy as they came visiting and went back mesmerised at the beauty of the country.
The visit was part of the maiden Private Jet Expedition from Brazil which earlier visited Asian countries including Azerbaijan, Cambodia Mongolia, Nepal, Vietnam, and Oman was the final destination before they flew back to São Paulo via London.
Oman was the last destination for the 40 tourists on their 23-day expedition around Asia and Middle East countries outside the tourist mainstream. Infinite Tours, a Muscat-based destination management company, successfully operated the programme for Brazilians.
Alexandre Cymbalista, Founder and CEO of Latitudes, Journeys and Knowledge, a Brazilian travel boutique, specialised in thematic and cultural journeys around the world, says “there was a feeling that we should have stayed longer, and all agreed that it was worth going back to know more about Oman which enchanted everyone.”
For Alexandre, it was, without doubt, the pleasant surprise of their brief stay and travel between Muscat and the mountains of Al Jabal Al Akhdhar in a chopper, where they slept in the excellent Alila Hotel for two nights.
Saud al Junaidy, General Manager, Infinite Tours, says that the services and experiences provided to the group were unique and complex. “We worked tirelessly with many industry partners for almost three months to make this operation a success including the Ministry of Heritage and Tourism.”
Saud mentions that it was the largest number of transfers by six helicopters from the Al Bustan Palace Hotel to Anantara Jabal Al Akhdar Resort in collaboration with Al Sharqiya Aviation and Royal Oman Police Aviation. The well-travelled Brazilians were lodged at luxury villas at the Anantara with special arrangements for lunch, dinner and gatherings. Arrival and immigration formalities at Muscat Airport VIP Terminal were done in coordination with JETEX.
Timam Alsinaidi, a Spanish tour guide, explained to the tourists during their visit to various site locations. He says he was privileged to spend time with such wonderful tourists as he accompanied them to The National Museum, Anantara Hotel, Nizwa souq, Birkat Al Mouz till they were dropped off by the helicopter from the Al Bustan Hotel at the airport.
Isabel Graça, one of the few official tour guides in Portuguese and Spanish says, “I always put my best efforts to popularise Oman as a tourist destination and highlight the traditional and cultural aspects.”
With her wide experience in diplomacy, she works as a tour guide, with a preference to guide VIP guests, in small groups, preferably ladies having worked earlier with visitors from Spain, Portugal, Mexico and Brazil.
Isabel explained about date farming to the guests and made the Brazilians aware that Oman is geographically diverse and beautiful, with its deserts, mountains, wadis, and amazing heritage villages, retaining charm with its original wooden crafted doors and windows. The tour had an orientation to culture, history and geopolitics and did my best to make their trip memorable,” she explains.
Notable personalities who were part of the group included CNN journalist Lourival Santana, National Geographic photographer Érico Hiller, and famous historían Saúl Mota and other professionals.
The tourist’s excursion to Nizwa with a tour around the old town was carried out using eight electric buggies and a special refreshment set-up at the Nizwa Fort. They later visited a date plantation at Birkat Al Mouz with a demonstration of the date harvesting process by the local farmers.
José Guilherme Nunes Lapa, Private Jets, MICE & Incoming Manager for Latitudes, who was part of the visit, praised the excellent role of Infinite Tours in working with the local authorities, government and suppliers to find the best and the most comfortable solutions.
“The guests left the country with a very positive image regarding tourist destinations and high standard of service. Oman is a very new destination for Brazilians and definitely, Latitudes is committed to keeping planning groups to the country and Infinite Tours will be responsible for our guests in future,” he adds.
He highlighted the heli experience which surprised the guests in a very positive way. “Anantara was the best choice ever for the group and everybody was happy with their villas, food and service. The care with cold towels, cold water and having cars available for everybody were very helpful,” he reminisced.
The tourists were impressed by the level of service and hospitality and mentioned how Oman provided a perfect setting to end their month-long expedition and was keen to plan future trips soon.