The journey has begun! 2 pretty girls, Mistral paddle boards, skateboards, Douchebags and the awe-inspiring environment in New Zealand...oh and most importantly a wedding. One of my favourite photographers and good friend Camilla Stoddart is marrying a Kiwi farmer!
The trip will include the production of two short brand videos; the first being for Mistral who are one of the most reputable SUP makers in the world. ‘Mistral is today playing a significant lasting role, in the evolution and development of stand up paddle boarding (SUP) a vehicle of phenomenal possibilities and endless adventures’. We would be travelling with a combination of inflatable ‘Adventurer’s’ and ‘Fit boards’.
The second brand video is for Douchebags. Twin-tip legend and GS skier Jon Olsson and product engineer and entrepreneur Truls Brataas, have design new types of travel bags that reflected the needs of a modern explorer. They interviewed 150 skiers, snowboarders and surfers to find out what the core user really wanted in a travel bag. They even went to airline companies and worked together with baggage handlers to learn how to make bags better suited for travel. Myself and the girls were about to put the bags to the test on our trip to NZ.
We made our way to London’s Gatwick airport a couple of hours before our flight and then checked in with Singapore Airlines. I was amazed at the ease of travelling with our Douchebags and Paddle Boards. At only 7kg, and folding up compactly, the SUPs fit into our Douchebags easily along with the light foot pumps. The DB hand luggage attaches firmly and with ease to the travel bag which then attaches to the Ski bag. That’s the idea, you only travel with one piece. Finally someone has come up with a solution to my years of uncomfortable travelling with skis, travel luggage and camera equipment.
The food and service is always very good on Singapore Airlines so we were pretty excited about getting comfortable with a good movie and a glass of wine. We were really lucky to be able to get a row each in which to stretch out and sleep on the first leg from London to Singapore which is 14 hours.
Once in Singapore I bought yet another camera and tripod and then we all went for a swim. Singapore Airport has a rooftop swimming pool at the cost of $13 (Singapore $) which is always an amazing way to refresh before the next flight.
We boarded the next Singapore Airlines flight, this time to Brisbane. We were not lucky enough to get any empty seats next to us this time and the 8 hour flight was a little less enjoyable. At Brisbane we had a couple of hours and then we were on our next flight to Queenstown.
Finally Queenstown! The flight in is pretty spectacular with the view of mountains and glacial lakes. Camilla was at the airport to meet us. It was so good to see her! And she was looking amazing – ready to get wed! The drive from Queenstown to Wanaka brought back loads of memories from my previous trips there and I started feeling awake with excitement.
We arrived at the Alpine Resort where our friend Trev’s mum, Susie Perry was there to host us. Susie P (as we call her) is the most lively, kind and spirited person's and we are so grateful to her for hosting us in such a beautiful house. She has two appartments one above the other. The downstairs was to be our place to stay for the next few weeks. A modern two bedroom with a lawn overlooking lake Wanaka and a shared swimming pool. We were pretty stoked. Susie P was going to be upstairs in the bigger apartment with Watty, Emma, Carthy, Pat and Tom. It was always entertaining and never lonely! Thanks a million Susie P!!