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A-List: World's Top Travel Agents 2011

Ilustration for top travel agents a list in Europe.

Photo: Bo Lundberg

Australia, New Zealand & South Pacific


Catharina Apodac
New Favorite: The $200 million Museum of Old and New Art, in Hobart, Tasmania, has singlehandedly revitalized the city, Apodac says. Its impressive permanent ranges from Egyptian artifacts to contemporary art.
Years as Agent: 22.
Other Specialty: New Zealand.
Fee: From $150.

Cassandra Bookholder
New Favorite: In the Aussie bush, about 60 miles north of Sydney, Bookholder loves the modern glass-and-wood Pretty Beach House hotel. You’ll dine on fresh fish while watching kookaburras at play.
Years as Agent: 5.
Other Specialty: New Zealand.
Fee: From $150.

Terry Coffey
Special Booking: For a horse-racing enthusiast, Coffey created a customized tour with seats at key Australian tracks such as Belmont Park, in Perth, and Elwick, in Tasmania.
Years as Agent: 33.
Other Specialty: New Zealand.
Fee: From $200.

Suzy Mercien-Ferol
New Favorite: Mercien-Ferol describes the 20-room Saffire Freycinet, in Tasmania, as a place where travelers seeking both natural beauty and 1,000-thread-count sheets will be happy. Its restaurant has one of the most comprehensive wine lists in the Pacific region.
Years as Agent: 17.
Other Specialty: New Zealand.
Fee: From $150.

French Polynesia

Susanne Hamer
Insider Clout: For a couple looking to have a unique wedding, Hamer arranged an underwater ceremony in the Pacific Ocean. They then enjoyed a private dinner at La Villa Mahana in Bora-Bora.
Years as Agent: 18.
Other Specialty: Fiji.
Fee: From $200.

Mark Hoyer
New Favorite: The Four Seasons Resort Bora Bora, Hoyer’s go-to hotel for clients. “At night, the open-air restaurant serves some of the best sushi I’ve ever tasted.”
Years as Agent: 24.
Other Specialty: Costa Rica.
Fee: From $125.

Robin Turner
New Favorite: When planning vacations for VIP clients, Turner suggests a stay at Motu Teta, a sophisticated villa complex on a private island just an hour’s boat ride from Rangiroa Airport. The place stands out for its highly personable staff and remote location.
Years as Agent: 25.
Other Specialty: Fiji.
Fee: Varies.

New Zealand

Donna Thomas *
Excited About: Thomas recently developed a nature tour, following Maori sacred paths in the northern Rotorua region; the journey includes a visit to the holy Hinehopu’s Tree.
Years as Agent: 38.
Other Specialty: Australia.
Fee: From $100.

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* Tour Operator
** T+L’s Travel Agent Advisory Board, 2011
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