Cover Stars: ‘Kate Moss, move over!’ says Bryony Hordern on Montenegro trip

The Travel Counsellors agent tells Juliet Dennis that she plans to return to the country

Q. Why did you enter Cover Stars?
A. I get Travel Weekly and read about Cover Stars and thought I’d send in a video, saying there is life in the ‘old bag’ yet! My entry was a bit tongue in cheek; I didn’t expect to get through, but I did think it would be rather wonderful to feature in Travel Weekly after all the years I have spent in travel. I love being involved in the travel industry. I am 76 now so I don’t like to be too busy – I’ve got about 10 bookings on the go right now.

I  did think it would be rather wonderful to feature in Travel Weekly after all the years I have spent in travel

Pictured: Richard Lowrey-Heywood with Bryony at Regent Porto Montenegr

Q. What did you think of Montenegro?
A. Montenegro is beautiful. The old towns are fascinating, full of charm and nice to meander around. We were taken to lots of different restaurants. The food was good: lots of cheese, ham, steak, kebabs. Our hotel was lovely, and the suites were gorgeous and huge. It was in town, rather than near the beach. There was a stunning pool upstairs. For families, the big hotels are very kid-friendly. The currency is also euros, even though Montenegro is not in the European Union. We went to a bar in Porto Montenegro and I had a hot chocolate. The spoon stood up in it; it was the best hot chocolate I’d ever tasted!

Montenegro is beautiful. The old towns are fascinating, full of charm and nice to meander around


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Q. What did you think of Jet2holidays?
A. I thought Jet2holidays were phenomenal. As a luxury travel agent, that was hugely surprising to me. I’d never been away with Jet2holidays before. There was much more legroom on the flight than I was expecting. The Jet2holidays staff were superb; there was a really good crew on board. I came away from the trip with a really positive attitude towards Jet2holidays. The flight completely changed my perception of the airline; it was so good. The ground crew were very helpful and friendly. I was really impressed.

The flight completely changed my perception of the airline; it was so good. The ground crew were very helpful and friendly

Q. What did you think of Jet2holidays’ VIP ‘red team’ service?
A. We were treated like VIPs all the way, on the aircraft and through the airport. We were whipped through so we missed all the queues. In short, it was wonderful.



Q. What was the highlight of the Cover Stars trip?
A. We visited some lovely hotels, but my absolute favourite was The Chedi Luštica Bay. It was a notch above; they had their own wine, for example. We went there after lunch and while lots of the group went up to the hotel’s spa for a few hours I decided instead to have some tea and cake. I spent a delicious three hours at the hotel, it really was lovely. It had wonderful rooms and looked out on the marina. The food was the best I’d ever had.

We visited some lovely hotels, but my absolute favourite was The Chedi Luštica Bay. It was a notch above

Pictured: Bryony at Our Lady of the Rock

Q. How was your photoshoot?
A. My photoshoot was divine; another highlight of my trip. We were in the old town of Budva. I have not had a personal photoshoot before, with someone giving me directions while taking pictures of me! I wore a multicoloured jumpsuit and just posed. Steve, the photographer, was actually lying on the ground while I walked towards him; I thought ‘Kate Moss, move over!’ It was an incredible feeling. And then the owner of a nearby Gelato ice cream shop asked if I would like an ice cream to have in the photoshoot. They gave me an orange and raspberry sorbet. It was a joy.

Steve, the photographer, was actually lying on the ground while I walked towards him; I thought ‘Kate Moss, move over!’ 

Q. How would you sell Montenegro?
A. I would recommend Montenegro for short breaks and would put Jet2holidays in the mix as an operator to provide that trip, whereas before I might not have done that. Jet2holidays offers luxury holidays and will be an operator I offer clients from now on. I was looking to go myself with a friend. I am hoping to do a spa break. I would really like to go back to the Chedi hotel. I think my clients would also love that hotel. It’s perfectly placed.

Pictured: Laura Donald, Sophie Helsby and Bryony

I would recommend Montenegro for short breaks and would put Jet2holidays in the mix as an operator to provide that trip

Q. What were the other agents on the trip like?
A. When I met up with the group, I knew all their bosses (because of my age!) so that was quite funny. They were great fun. They saw me as the ‘mother’ of the group. We all gelled and the chat was very good. I was 35 years older than most of them! We have kept in touch on a WhatsApp group so we have everyone’s details. It’s a bit like at Travel Counsellors – tremendous camaraderie.


Pictured: Bryony at The Chedi Luštica Bay

Bryony’s travel career

My first trip abroad was in 1955 when my father drove our family to Italy. I started with Qantas as a shorthand typist on December 13, 1965. I always wanted to be in reservations and I started at Pan Am in May 1969. After a year in reservations, I transferred to the ticket office where I stayed until 1981, when I took redundancy and set up a property management company with a girlfriend.

While retired I was still helping friends with travel, but not booking them, so when Travel Counsellors got in touch, I decided to join

It was a disaster, so in February 1982 I started an agency in Royston, Hertfordshire, and that was the start of Tickets Anywhere. I sold it to Spear Travels in January 2015 and retired. While retired I was still helping friends with travel, but not booking them, so when Travel Counsellors got in touch, I decided to join, specialising in luxury long-haul, tailor-made and cruises. That was in 2018. Next year I will celebrate 60 years in the travel industry.

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