SWIMMING POOL. REFLEXTION banner .jpg

Blog

Tips & Tales: Hiking with Giulia



According to German philosopher Nietzsche, the well-being we experience while we are immersed in nature derives from the fact that nature has no opinion on us, it doesn’t judge us.

Perhaps, this is the reason why we often feel the necessity to move away from the more tourist itineraries to see natural areas of great and impervious beauty.
 
IMAGE 1 - Family

We begin with one of our Luxury Experience Designers from our Italian office... Giulia, an enthusiast hiker! She will tell us more about this sport, not only from a technical point of view, but also and above all from an emotional one. Let’s begin!

Hi Giulia, welcome to our ‘Tips & Tales’ column! When and why did you start hiking?

'Hiking' is a very simple word, but it involves a multitude of aspects. From a purely technical point of view, hiking is a sporting activity practiced in natural contexts, such as mountains, meadows or woods. Going for an excursion certainly requires good physical preparation, as the main element is walking.

I live near the Italian Prealps and since I was a small kid my parents always took me to the mountain to spend some time surrounded by pure nature and landscapes.
 
IMAGE 1 - Family

Growing up I started feeling that nature is my ‘happy place’, it is where I feel myself, complete and happy. This feeling increased a lot after moving back from London, a city that I loved, but where I really missed my mountains and lakes.

In the last years I have been trying to spend at least one day per week hiking. It has become a sort of therapy that helps me to feel peaceful, and it reminds me that we are so small compared to the magnificence of nature. 
 
IMAGE 1 - Family

What are your best 10 hiking tips for beginners?

1. Wear comfortable shoes.

2. ‘Dress like an onion’, that means to wear several layers of clothes as the temperature may vary a lot while hiking.

3. Bring water and some healthy snacks.

4. Never forget your camera.

5. Don’t hike alone if you are a beginner or if you don’t know the path and the area. 

6. Bring with you sun protection, first aid supplies, and at least a waterproof jacket. 

7. Leave no trace on trails.

8. Watch your feet. 

9. Bring a GPS or a map. 

10. Don’t rush, enjoy every step.
 
IMAGE 1 - Family
 
IMAGE 1 - Family
 
IMAGE 1 - Family

And what about the 5 steps you think are essential to ‘plan out’ a great adventure?

If you are planning a hiking trip in a place you don’t know, here my tips:

1. Check the best period of the year for hiking in that region.

2. Contact a local expert who will arrange the trails according to your level of fitness.

3. Prepare in advance the essentials to bring with you.  

4. Have a local guide accompanying you during the walk, to have the opportunity to learn about the area, its history and natural aspects.

5. Start your adventure with the right spirit, don’t be afraid to fail.

In your opinion, what is the best place for hiking in Italy?

In general, I love places that combine mountains and lakes or sea, where you can enjoy two opposite views. For example, the Cinque Terre, in the Ligurian Coast, is an unmissable place to go for hiking.
 
IMAGE 1 - Family

If we go North, definitely the Ferret or Veny Valleys, in the Aosta Valley, with its Monte Bianco or ‘Mont Blanc’. And the Dolomites with their well-known peaks. Of course, I have to mention the place where I live, Varese, a province that boasts wonderful mountains and seven lakes located among Milan, Lake Como, Switzerland and Lake Maggiore. In my opinion, they are truly magic places.
 
IMAGE 1 - Family

Here some of the experiences recommended by Giulia and available on our website: Hiking & Trekking and Hiking at Altitude.

Tips & Tales: Reiki and Meditation with Sylvia



We are delighted to introduce you to our ‘Tips & Tales’ column! 

Our first guest to Tips & Tales is Sylvia, our Account Director USA from our France office. Sylvia is extremely passionate about Reiki and Meditation, and today she will talk about these ancient and peaceful techniques, by also giving us some insightful tips which we hope might be helpful to overcome this hard time that we have all endured, and help us find a new light in our life path.

The idea comes from the desire to share with you the stories of our beloved team members who, besides being excellent professionals and employees are wonderful human beings, full of great passion with many stories to tell and tips to dispense!

IMAGE 1 - Family

Hi Sylvia, welcome to our ‘Tips & Tales’ column! We’re happy to have you here today, and we are very curious to hear about your passion. 

How would you describe Reiki and Meditation?


Thank you for having me! It’s an honour for me to share my passion here with you. Reiki is a traditional technique used for healing and enlightenment by using Ki, which is the Universal Energy. This Universal Energy exists in everything. It is the life energy inside the human body that gives us natural healing ability and the power to live with vigour.

The use of Reiki was developed as one the secret methods in ancient times. It had been handed down without being revealed to the public eye until being systematized and perfected by Usui Mikao in 1922. Since then Reiki has travelled from Japan through many countries. In Reiki, the effect does not differ from the believer to the non-believer, so we can apply it to anyone who wants to receive it and to animals and plants as well.
 
IMAGE 1 - Family

Mindfulness means to be present. It means being ‘in the moment’, experiencing life directly as it unfolds. It's a way of stepping back and resting the mind in its natural state. But after a lifetime of being lost in thoughts, the right conditions are needed in order to learn how to step back in this way. That's where meditation comes in, simply as a technique which provides optimum conditions for practicing the skill of mindfulness.

When and why did you start practicing Reiki and Meditation?

Reiki & Meditation brings out joy into my everyday life. My journey to Reiki began in early 2019 when Julia Sidko, my dear colleague at ‘Queen of Clubs Paris’, introduced me to a Reiki Master in Paris. I took three Reiki sessions from the Reiki Master and from the first session I felt a stream of energy flowing through me. I knew deep down in my heart that I wanted to have this serene feeling every single day.
 
IMAGE 1 - Family

I decided to learn Reiki and I received a First Degree in April 2019. Then I wanted to share this wellness technique to others as well, so I continued the training and I received a Second Degree Reiki in February 2020. As for meditation, I did it for the first time when I was living in Bali, back in 2011. I did it on and off for several years. Then I began to meditate more regularly in 2017 when I was pregnant. I saw a huge benefit not only for me, but also for my family. Today, I continue to practice and I include three short sessions in my daily schedule.
 
IMAGE 1 - Family

What are your best meditation tips for beginners?

It’s pretty helpful to see meditation as a practice. It’s an experience which gives us nothing new than what we already have within us. However, it helps us to release all the things we no longer need, such as worry, fear, anger, guilt, shame, and so on, so that our inner Light can appear. Meditation is not a quick fix, so we cannot hope to do it once and expect miracles.
 
IMAGE 1 - Family
 
IMAGE 1 - Family

At first, we can start with only a couple of minutes a day. We can sit down to meditate first thing in the morning. Alternatively, we can go to our meditation pillow in the evening before going to bed. We can even try it for one minute at the beginning, to establish a daily habit. As we continue, we no longer see meditation as a chore we have to do, instead as a gift we offer to ourselves to relax.

If you are inspired by Sylvia’s passion and you are now looking for unique experiences to reinvigorate your mind and body, take a look at some of the experiences below before you go! 
 
IMAGE 1 - Family

When it comes to our mind and body we simply deserve the best, and the wellness of our clients is very important to us, so if you are planning to travel to Ibiza we have the right experiences for you! Ibiza is not only one of the best party scenes in the world…. there is definitely something else you can do! 

Why not indulge yourself in unique wellness activities ranging from kundalini yoga to massages and sound meditation? We have a vast amount of options for you to discover when on the island. If a more therapeutic wellness experience is what you seek, you can try our crystal therapy or water therapy experiences. Whatever you may decide on, relaxation will be a guarantee! Take a look at our Wellness section and treat your mind, body and soul to blissful peace and detoxification.

A big thank you to Sylvia for this reinvigorating chat, we hope you enjoyed our first ‘Tips & Tales’ column, wishing you a peaceful and safe day!

 

Did You Know? That’s How an 18th-century Opera Ended Up Influencing the Journeys of the Millions of London Underground Passengers!



Travelling up the escalators at Southwark Station, passengers enter an intermediate hall, where a huge crescent-shaped skylight allows natural light to penetrate the station, creating a gradation of sparkling light in the upper area and changing to the richness of colour in the lower one.

The wall is 16m tall and 40m long and consists of 630 triangular panels of deep blue enamelled glass. The project is a collaboration between MPJ architects and artist Alexander Beleschenko.

On the one hand, the architects focused on creating contrasting experiences of natural and artificial light; on the other hand, Beleschenko drew inspiration from Karl Friedrich Schinkel’s painting 'The Hall of Stars in the Palace of The Queen of the Night', which is the scenic design for an 1816 production of The Magic Flute, arguably Mozart’s most popular opera. 

So, here we are! Neither just an underground station nor a fairy tale only, but a unique cohesion between art and science that makes the daily commute a unique and unrepeatable experience!

Our Planet



Over the years, our negligence has catapulted us into a new era of crisis which brought us to enter the so-called ‘decade of action’. We are now facing the most urgent call humankind has ever faced, climate change and, along with it, so many other issues caused by the threats our planet Earth has endured because of mankind. In this regard, we would like to share with you a book by Christiana Figueres and Tom Rivett-Carnac, ‘The Future We Choose’, we found very insightful and on-topic. 

‘for centuries […] conquerors of distant lands pillaged colonies for metals, minerals, and exotic foods, in many cases leaving little more than chaos, infectious diseases, and Bibles in exchange. As managers of fertile soils, we humans have proved remarkably effective at extracting trees and nutrients, leaving only depleted topsoil in our wake. There’s nothing inherently wrong with these instincts. They help us grow to meet rising challenges. But our growth, both personal and professional, is a two-way street: what we get and what we give. As a species, however, we have become used to a one-way transaction, that of getting, often losing sight of the void that our taking has created. […] Staring us in the face is a huge red sign that reads STOP: PRECIPICE AHEAD’.

This statement helps us think about how humans have always taken from nature without giving back or at least respecting it. Nature provides us with our oxygen, regulates our weather patterns, pollinates our crops, produces our food, our rainwater, drinking water, weather, climate, coastlines, and most importantly, oxygen, the air that we breathe, are all provided and regulated by the sea. 

We really need to protect our ocean, all our wonderful animals, plants, species on Earth, and coexist harmoniously, not only because we need them, but because we occupy the same space since our planet originated, and we both have the same rights to be here.

We can all do something, both as individuals and businesses. Now, more than ever before, our goal is to adopt a sustainable way of living by taking very few precautions: donate what we don’t use, avoid wastefulness, recycle, respect and support local economies, help children to become aware during their growth, use affordable and clean energy. 

Together we will do our best to protect our planet, and we truly believe becoming closer to nature is our future to happiness, so from today onwards we’ll meet you weekly on our social media feed to share authentic pictures and videos of the beautiful nature from all of our destinations with the hope you’ll enjoy our point of view on what we believe is the greatest treasure of our life.

Another Day, Another Valley - #TravelBecause



Whether they were explorers, pilgrims, merchants, errant knights, colonisers, captives, castaways, ambassadors, pirates, or scientists, travellers filled most of history from medieval to modern times.

In the sixteenth, seventeenth, and eighteenth centuries the history of travelling in Europe was characterised by a new paradigm for travelling, called the ‘Grand Tour’, usually described as the traditional trip undertaken for pleasure by the social élite.

It began as a French expression, ‘le grand tour’, but it was appropriated by Britons of the late seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries who had enough money to travel. It was a social ritual aimed to prepare these young men for leadership.

The Grand Tour had a common itinerary: crossing the Channel, going through the Loire Valley, Paris, and then Geneva; after that, the tourists would cross the Alps and proceed through Turin, Milan, Florence, Venice, Rome, and Naples. The average duration was around two years. On their way back the tourists’ journey would include Austria, Germany, and Holland. However, Italy and France were the most popular destinations.

Throughout the centuries, travelling has taken on different shapes, starting in the form of educational experience for aristocratic students, then it evolved into something different. Travelling, as we know it nowadays, embraces a new way of being in the world. The modern travellers want to broaden their horizons, while also enjoying the leisure aspects of it. This is the case of our lovely team member Giulia, who has recently been to Courmayeur in Italy hiking among the stunning Alpine villages, such as Valgrisenche, Val Veny, Val Ferret and many others.

Unfortunately, Covid19 has harshly hit our lives and the travel industry sector, but at the same time it has pushed us to reconsider the place where we live. Therefore, even though for the most it’s very difficult to travel due to the temporary restrictions on non-essential travel, we can still travel within our country - as Giulia did - and enjoy the beauty it offers.

We have to join together, in this collective effort, so that once these hard times are over we’ll be able to travel freely once again, and we’ll be stronger than ever and waiting for you, ready to be at your disposal with our love, passion and experience.

#TravelBecause authentic travel experiences can open your mind to life’s endless possibilities.

#TravelBecause the more you see of the world, the more you’ll realise how it works.

#TravelBecause it increases happiness.

#TravelBecause you’ll discover as much about yourself as you do about the world.

#TravelBecause travel is what makes us feel part of the same world.

Summer Starts Today - 'Solstice Digital Age'



In the Northern hemisphere the summer solstice is the longest day of the year and when the astronomical summer begins.

The solstice is the moment when the Sun reaches in its apparent path along the ecliptic, the point of maximum or minimum declination – the maximum in the case of the summer solstice. That is, the Sun culminates at its zenith, at the highest point concerning the horizon of its annual route. Since the summer solstice is also the day of the year when the sunlight lasts longer, and wins over the night and the shadow in pagan religions around the world – especially those closest to the Poles – this day is celebrated with special rites.

The mysterious Stonehenge complex is arranged so that the sun’s rays fall on a block of stone placed in the center, at the dawn of the summer solstice. That’s why this place is so special, and due to the current circumstances, this year, unfortunately, there won’t be thousands of people gathering there to watch the sunrise.

The pandemic has forced us to stay at home, but nothing will ever stop us from travelling across our extraordinary world, especially now in the digital age. So, for the first time the summer solstice will stream live today from 20:30 to 05:30 – BST time.

We’ll be there from home, and you?!

Hot Exhibitions



Opening in London this September, don’t miss the first major museum exhibition of Prada , delving into the past and future of this most influential fashion house.

Or, over at the V & A from 27th June, step into the mind-bending world of Alice in Wonderland in an immersive and theatrical exploration of the origins, reinventions and adaptations of this international phenomenon which span over a century and half.

If your penchants run more towards famous artists, immerse yourself in a multi-sensory display of Van Gogh’s most famous works in the Meet Vincent Van Gogh interactive exhibit – on until 21st May. And don’t miss the Picasso and Paper on now at the Royal Academy of Arts until 13th April showing 300 of Picasso’s works using the medium of paper. The Tate Modern is celebrating Dora Maar with her own exhibit until 15th March.

This summer in Edinburgh, the Little Black Dress exhibition tells the story of this modern staple of a woman’s wardrobe with 60 iconic displays by fashion houses and contemporary designers such as Chanel, Dior, and Christopher Kane.

We have so many more wonderful exhibits, keep an eye on our Ticket page! 

The Prada 'Front and Back' exhibition takes place at the Design Museum in September 2020

Only the Best for the Euro 2020



It’s that time to indulge in a month of fantastic football. 12 cities. 12 countries. From the finest in hospitality and accommodation to private jets, transfers, and fantastic experiences, we have amazing packages for you! 

Premium Locations 
Get into the game with luxurious service available in Rome, London, Glasgow, Dublin and now also in Amsterdam! Enjoy sublime cuisine and fine dining. See the matches from the best vantage points. Experience the most superb hospitality luxuries available and pamper yourself with the most delicious tastes of Europe as you’re immersed in the action and spectacle.

Exciting Packages
With packages including the finest seats available for the best views, access to private suites before and after matches, dedicated service, high-end cuisine, and a vast array of beverages as well as additional entertainments, food stations, commemorative gifts and more, there’s definitely something for everyone! 

Around the Globe
We also offer incredible packages at the additional destinations of the remaining matches. Enjoy the game at the best venues in these cities offering perfect views of the matches, committed service and relaxing luxuries for the ultimate in sophisticated enjoyment.

Service meets Luxury
Queen of Clubs can help you with every aspect of your trip. We offer private jets, meet and greet services and superior cars as well as amazing experiences, tours and luxurious accommodation. All of our services are available on request so please do get in touch with us to find out more.

For additional information on what we can offer, please request our newly published Euro 2020 Brochure, just email sports@Qofclubs.com

The Sound of Sleigh Bells in London



Nothing at Christmastime is as traditional as being in London, experiencing the best of this exciting season as you discover this fascinating place. From delicious, festive foods to try in the street markets to fantastic light displays at beautiful, historic estates – not to mention the ice rinks (of course!), there’s so much going on in this amazing city for everyone. Even if you’re celebrating Thanksgiving across the pond, there are some great restaurants to have dinner with your family and friends and even cruises along the Thames to see the sights! Take a look at our restaurant suggestions. 

There are Dickens’ themed tours and challenging Yuletide scavenger hunts to really make the most of your time in London. Have some great experiences and lots of fun! 

Take in a show or a concert in the famous West End or at Wembley, explore wooden chalet markets in the shadows of ancient monuments and don’t forget to take the little ones to see Santa! Take a look at our Ticket suggestions under the tag Christmas. 

Have a Merry one! 

10 Years



Over the past ten years, it’s been a wonderful journey, making great friendships, forming lasting partnerships and creating a lifestyle of wanderlust and luxurious experiences.

We thank you all deeply for keeping our wonderful dream alive and helping to keep Queen of Clubs at the forefront of the industry.

Our biggest thanks goes to our team at Queen of Clubs who, each and every day, strive to make the company everything it can be.
We thank you from the bottom of our hearts.

Filippo & Jennifer

Celebrating 10 years of limitless luxury.

Excited to Be Live!



We are just over the moon to present our new and exciting website! The idea was to create an exclusive platform for ease and dependability with everything at your fingertips - just for you.

Password protected, navigating through our weird and wonderful experiences and luxury services is quick, easy and stress-free! Explore our vast range of tickets that we can acquire for concerts, sports, ballet, opera, cabaret, and other events - even if they’re sold out!

The elements of our QofC Lifestyle section have been carefully selected, listing our suggested hotels and restaurants. Enquire about nightlife - including a star selection of Beach Clubs and the best of Ibizan bars and clubs.

All of this can be enjoyed whilst listening to the beats of Filippo Torriani’s playlists on our Music page, complementing the vibe of your week, and don’t forget to keep an eye on this page – Stories – to stay caught-up on the latest news of our four destinations: UK, France, Italy and Ibiza.

Get started

You’ll be asked to fill in a quick, one-time form to create a password for our exclusive experiences. This will be sent via email and that’s literally it; you’ll be able to view our full range!

We hope you love our new website as much as we do. 

Enjoy browsing! With love