After traveling as guests of an Exclusive Resorts Member, Robert and Michele Walker were hooked on vacationing with the Club. When they first joined the Club, Robert and Michele Walker experienced various Vacation Collection residences. Last year, the couple also took advantage of the Experience Collection, and visited Egypt on their first Once-in-a-Lifetime Journey trip with Exclusive Resorts. 

Q.

What Was the Allure of Egypt? 

Robert Walker: Egypt has been on the top of my bucket list ever since seeing pictures of the pyramids as a kid. When I saw the scene from the movie Bucket List where Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman are sitting on top of a pyramid, that was the clincher. I had to go.

Did You Have Any Trepidations Traveling to The Middle East?

RW: Michele had lots of concerns about safety and security. This isn’t a trip you would book with a travel agent or on your own. But the Club’s solid reputation with trips, along with their partnership with Abercrombie & Kent, alleviated a lot of upfront concerns.

How Did the Exclusive Resorts Team Ease Concerns Ahead of Travel? 

RW: Our Ambassador put us on a conference call with Gina Bach, Vice President of Experiences, as she had recently been to Egypt scoping out the trip, as well as an Abercrombie & Kent representative based in Cairo. They did a great job of explaining the security measures put in place and convinced me that it would be a safe trip.

Bucket List Trips Can Be Logistically Challenging to Plan. How Did Exclusive Resorts Simplify It?

RW: All we had to do is make the air reservations to and from Cairo. Exclusive Resorts took care of the rest. It was as carefree a trip as one could have. ER’s staff was with us from the time we landed in Cairo to go through customs, through our departure back to the States. Their continual presence and guidance especially put Michele at ease.

Most Memorable Trip Highlights?

RW: Seeing the pyramids and Sphinx in Giza, just outside of Cairo, is awe-inspiring. Pictures and video don’t do it justice. Thanks to Exclusive Resorts, we were able to get to ground level at the Sphinx, even touch it, while others watched us jealously from above. We had never heard of the temples at Abu Simbel, located in southern Egypt, but they were magnificent. And in the Valley of the Kings, we went down to King Tutankhamun’s tomb, another exclusive Member experience inaccessible to the general public.

What Surprised You Most About the Destination?

RW: The friendliness of the people. Going there, we didn’t have an appreciation for the different religions and ethnic backgrounds. We hear a lot in the news about different parts of the world that create bias. The people were genuinely nice everywhere we went. We got to know one of the two Egyptologists very well and have continued communicating with him even after the trip.

Why Would You Encourage Someone to Visit Egypt Now?

RW: I don’t think there is anywhere in the world that one can experience thousands of years of history up close and personal quite like Egypt. Unlike what may be portrayed in the news, Egypt has a stable government and takes safety and security very seriously. There’s no reason to wait.