FX Excursions

FX Excursions offers the chance for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in destinations around the world.

Time to Unwind

by Francis X. Gallagher

Jun 6, 2023
Leisure Lifestyle 2023

I recently returned from my second annual golf trip to Kiawah Island, where we enjoyed fantastic weather. Upon arrival, the group met for lunch at The Ryder Cup Bar, located at The Ocean Course, one of the top-ranked courses in the country. Luckily, we were not playing that day, as the wind whipped up and brought unscheduled douses of rain. As one of the caddies told me, wind gusts of 35 mph made the course unplayable. But some players braved the conditions as we sat comfortably inside enjoying our first lunch of the trip while chairs cascaded outside and players tried to keep their shots on track.

© Francis X. Gallagher

We took a lesson from last year and upgraded from shabby condos to individual homes, two on Oyster Rake Drive between The Sanctuary hotel and Cougar Point Golf Course — a welcome change. Dining was enjoyable, with this year’s top cuisine winner The Atlantic Room at The Ocean Course. With a wealth of culinary experience, executive chef John Ondo brings a fresh approach; not only was our meal outstanding, but Chef Ondo walked the rooms and offered suggestions, which I took.

Returning to reality, I was honored to attend the grand reopening of the ballroom at The Pierre in New York. The lavishly restored ballroom includes a state-of-the-art audiovisual system with a 500-square-foot control center hidden behind the stage. The Pierre’s general manager, Francois-Olivier Luiggi, introduced the entertainment for the evening, Broadway star Brian Stokes Mitchell, for a wonderful New York and Broadway experience.

I hope you cleared your schedule to join us on June 27 at The Union League of Philadelphia for the 11th annual Leisure Lifestyle Awards. You voted for your favorite cruise lines, hotels, destinations and airlines catering your many annual “trips of a lifetime.” Come celebrate with the best of the industry in the Meade Room!

Lastly, I join many fellow industry professionals fed up with “resort fees” at hotels. I encountered the most egregious at Margaritaville Resort Times Square in New York. Upon check-in, and not before, I was presented with a resort fee of $57 per day. I was not using the pool or any other facilities and was there for just one night, in and out. Something must be done about these undis- closed and, some might say, fraudulent fees.

Enjoy your summer vacations and be patient with your flights and pending changes predicted for this year.

Francis X. Gallagher

Publisher and CEO

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FX Excursions

FX Excursions offers the chance for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in destinations around the world.

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