Sometimes Perrier won’t do! Washington Post Interview re-cap

Turning travel dreams into memories is our specialty.

And we say yes to unique requests: From private yachting around the Greek isles, sight-sleeping in German fairytale castles, an exclusive after-hours visit to the Vatican Museums, indulging at the chef’s table with Massimo Bottura grating 36-month old Parmigiano Reggiano over his signature tortellini, to taking GT and even Formula 1 cars for a no-speed limit spin on the race tracks of Modena or at the Hockenheim Ring.

Must-read: Washington Post article on the “wildest demands” guests have made. Inside Europe got to chime in and share an almost unbelievable yet true story from a hotelier friend in France.

Oh the Stories we could tell

Our journeys are as unique as our travelers: always passion-centric, and created anew each and every time.

Notably, every Inside Europe traveler is very important to us: young or old, still a kid, student or already highly accomplished. Our team strives to not just meet, but exceed expectations.

Unsurprisingly, after more than two decades in the happy and never boring industry of travel, our team has plenty of stories to tell. Recently, Natalie B. Compton of the Washington Post reached out to us for a story on “Guests’ Wildest Dreams” — since HBO’s popular TV Show ‘The White Lotus’ just premiered its second season. “Do the elite really make such outrageous demands?”, Compton and co-author Andrea Sachs ask. “To find out more, we interviewed concierges, travel advisers, hoteliers and tour guides that cater to 1-percenters.”

Sometimes Perrier won’t do

While we’d never tell confidential tales nor disclose the identity of our guests (unless permitted to do so), Sandra chimed in with a request Ted came across on a VIP ski journey in the French Alps just a few years ago.

The Washington Post subhead “Sanpellegrino showers” may already give it away, that despite being in France, the local sparkling mineral water didn’t quite do it.

Let’s share Compton’s summary: “Sandra Weinacht, a travel planner and co-owner of Inside Europe Travel Experiences, regularly hears stories of extreme behavior from friends and business connections who work in Europe’s five-star hotels. She says a hotelier in France told her that they had a guest request a huge amount of Sanpellegrino to be delivered from Italy in the same day. No other sparkling water would do; it had to be Sanpellegrino — and not because the guest loved the taste. His Russian client needed that water to wash her hair, and it could not be Perrier. It had to be Sanpellegrino.”

Mermaid on speed-dial, Private Plan for a Pup

You can’t make up requests like that, nor do we know if the Italian water was used cold, at room temperature or had to be heated prior to being used for $$$$ hair washing by said guest. Let us know if you ever solve that mystery and don’t forget, supposedly only San Pellegrino will do.

Here is one more link to the full binge-worthy story on VIP travel requests that include “Mermaid on speed-dial, a “real reindeer” for Christmas Eve in L.A. and “Private plane pups”.

While not showcased visually in the WP coverage (pictured above), we couldn’t agree more with fellow travel expert Stacy H. Small who also shares her experiences with celebrity travelers and extravagant demands. It’s not money that matters most, but kindness and making sure that everyone is on the page and treated with respect. While almost anything is possible with an elevated or unlimited budget, not every traveler is a good fit for Small nor us at Inside Europe.

If you aren’t yet following WP’s travel feature “By The Way” on Instagram or have subscribed to the BTW newsletter, we highly recommend doing so. Their credo is “Detours with locals. Travel tips you can trust” — exactly up our alley.

Travel Better Together with Inside Europe

We launched Inside Europe in 2007 to share favorite places and unique experiences with curious travelers. “Travel Better Together” is our motto and guiding principle. Plus, why go on a preset trip when you can embark on your very own journey with the people you like, traveling your way. To bring it back to Compton/Sachs’ story: “Nobody cedes their privilege,” Mark, the emasculated husband played by Steve Zahn, says to his family in the first season of “The White Lotus.” Not even on vacation.”
At Inside Europe we don’t believe its privilege that matters, but our traveler’s interests, passion and styles. And whether the request is to go heli-ski in the Alps, drive a (vintage) Ferrari under the Tuscan sun or something as simple as sipping the best cappuccino among locals in Rome — rest assured, we got you!

We are a storytellers + matchmakers, lovers of all the great things in life starting with food + drinks, music, ski + golf, plus more. Explore our latest travel stories curated by our team of passionate Europe experts. (Positive side effects include the urge to travel to Europe, eat, drink and explore!)

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