B&R Guide Gathering 2017
Our guides are the ultimate insiders, bons vivants, and all-around superstars who go the extra mile to make sure your B&R trip is out of this world. And at the end of every season, we get together to celebrate these hard-working, magical-moment-making folks at our annual Guide Gathering.
We like to think of our Guide Gatherings as a combination of Burning Man/TED Talk; this year’s edition took place in Sicily. We hang up our jerseys, celebrate our successes on a season well done. We put our heads together and share our collective intelligence from the road, dreaming up ways to outdo ourselves on future trips. (We also let our hair down for a bit of fun, too: check out the festivities below).
Of course, we couldn’t let this year’s edition go without mentioning some of the guides who make working with them (and travelling with them) such an inimitable pleasure, delight, and joy. (Perhaps you even have a few anecdotes to share of your own from this year’s travels!)
The Sidney Awards
Named after B&R co-founder, Sidney Robinson, in the hope that Sidney would actually make it to one of the Gatherings. (The trick worked).
Rookie of the Year
Mariadele Gatti blew away all our expectations this year with her confidence, hard work, and determination. Her preparation, open mind, and endless energy is something to be experienced on trip!
Luca Innocenti won with the most nominations from co-guides and staff alike. This hard-working Italian continually goes above and beyond to rock each of his trips!
Veteran guide Tibor Barna’s incredible attention to detail, incredible spirit, and mentorship of his fellow guides is well-known. A proud Hungarian, if you’re on one of Tibor’s trips, accept it as a given: you will learn how to say “cheers” in his native language—and then some! (It’s the tongue-twisting ‘Egészségére’, by the way).
Beloved by travellers, the incomparable Kim Hession was rated a 10 across the board for all the trips she guided this year, from Newfoundland to Vietnam.
Three guides were each rated perfect 10s by their co-guides: this year’s award was split between Chris Litt, Sakis Mitsoulis and Tabita Miotto.
Best T-shirt Drop
Our Texan in France, longtime guide-turned-mechanic, Jeff Condry, returned to the road and set up a stand at the Beaune market for an unforgettable t-shirt drop complete with cowboy outfit, and as many ‘y’alls’ as possible!
Gerardo Amortegui and Stefano Lopez navigated our travellers through Catalonia safely without skimping on the fun, despite protests, general shutdowns, and road closures.
Last but not Least…The Martha Award
Named after our founder Martha Butterfield, this award is bestowed upon a female guide who embodies the best of Martha’s guiding spirit: compassion, empathy, and kindness. Her co-guides will attest to these qualities: Tabita Miotto who picked up the award this year; having started guiding for us ten years ago, this Italian dynamo has gone on to guide more than 65 trips…perhaps you’ll have the chance to meet her on one of yours.