Top incentive ideas, part 2

From holistic retreats and luxurious glamping stays, 
to cultural immersions and wildlife encounters, here are some fresh ideas to motivate top achievers

1. Eat well, be well
At the forested 51-hectare The Farm at San Benito in Lipa, Batangas – a 90-minute drive south of Manila, Philippines – treat your top achievers to a range of holistic, medically-guided, science-based retreats in a lush, natural setting.

With the aim of detoxing and recharging for a new year, groups will be able to stay in the property’s 60 suites and villas, and indulge in treatments at the award-winning spa that draws inspiration from the principles and practices of traditional Philippine Healing Art.
• Capacity: Any group size

2. Forest and folklore
Trek inside the old forest in Subic guided by the Aetas, one of the Philippines’ oldest indigenous tribes and gatekeepers of the forest land threatened by commercialisation.

The forest yields its secrets recounted in folklore and storytelling: groups will see endemic tall trees, rare plants, fruits and herbs, and edible insects; follow the scent of flowers abloom; and learn jungle survival skills. The experience is capped with a dip in the forest pools and waterfalls, and lunch prepared by the tribe.
• Capacity: Any group size

3. All aboard the train
This day trip with Canterbury Leisure Tours will take groups out of Christchurch onboard the TranzAlpine train that travels through the Southern Alps to Arthurs Pass. Along the way, groups will be treated to snow-capped mountains, turquoise-coloured rivers, and lush rolling plains. Groups will then be offered the option of a short tramp through old-growth mountain beech forest or to Devil’s Punchbowl Waterfall, before breaking for lunch.

On the return journey, groups will also get to experience an exhilarating jet boat ride through the spectacular gorges of the Waimakariri River. This is followed by a visit to a rural family-run farm for a sheep shearing and sheep-mustering demonstration, along with a spot of afternoon tea.
• Capacity: Any group size

4. Stay in a picture-postcard setting
Shirakawa-go in Japan is even more special in the stillness of evening and early morning. A number of the picturesque buildings, characterised by their thatched and steeply slanted roofs, are open as guesthouses, complete with historic beams, tatami flooring and sunken hearths. The village, located in one of the snowiest places in the country, is blanketed in white powder during January and February. There are more than 40 accommodation options for groups.

5. Wellness amid nature
Located near the hill station of Lonavala, Fazlani Natures Nest is easily accessible from both Mumbai and Pune. The sprawling property offers visitors a breathtaking view overlooking the majestic Sahyadri mountains, and serene backwaters of the Indrayani River.

Here, incentive groups can opt from a range of wellness therapies including Ayurveda, Naturopathy and Physiotherapy under its Conscious Change Retreats programme. Coupled with healthful energising activities and wellness cuisine, the programme aims to help groups reconnect and rejuvenate. Nature-trail walks, dynamic yoga, group exercise activities, and stretching sessions can also be incorporated during breakouts or pre- and post-meetings.
• Capacity: 80 pax

6. The world of wine
Monsoon Valley, Thailand’s leading wine producer, offers a range of activities for incentive winners, including a guided tour through the vineyard, cycling on the estate’s mountain trails, label painting workshops, and now, even a hot air balloon ride for an aerial view of the vines and surrounding area. And, of course, the opportunity to sample Monsoon Valley’s favourite tipples in the vineyard restaurant.
Travel planners can choose from three sites, Monsoon Valley Vineyard at Hua Hin, Tab Kwang Vineyard, and Chiang Mai Vineyard.
• Capacity: Any group size

7. Soak up ethnic mountain culture
Delve into the unique culture of the Red Dao ethnic tribe in Central Vietnam’s Sapa. This provides a memorable adventure for top achievers as they dive into the fascinating world of one of Vietnam’s ethnic groups. Guests can take part in a Red Dao wedding, feed guardian spirits, play traditional games and be treated to the hospitality of the minority group by staying in their homes.
• Capacity: Groups of 20

8. An island paradise
Get your top achievers out of the office and ship them off for a four-day trip to Belitung, Indonesia.

Being an island destination, winners will be able to snorkel at Kera Private Island, and participate in coral planting, while on a private boat trip to Kelayang Island. Island hopping can also be arranged.
Itineraries can also include a guided trek to look for various species of dragonflies, as well as an in-depth lesson on the island’s flora and fauna.

Aside from its natural riches, the east part of Belitung is home to significant sights such as the Rainbow Troops School, made famous by the home-grown Laskar Pelangi movie); Kirana Harbour; Museum Kata Andrea Hirata, Indonesia’s first literary museum; Bandung Lake; and Kwan Im Chinese Temple which is more than 250 years old.
• Capacity: 40 pax

9. Gems of Langkawi
The Essence of Asia provides a one-day wellness programme in Langkawi with a personalised guided tour by a local naturalist showcasing the flora and fauna of the sprawling Langkawi UNESCO Global Geopark.

Upon return to the hotel, top winners will be treated to an invigorating and revitalising traditional massage followed by a nutritious lunch. In the evening, they will be transferred to a secluded island where a four-course fine dining experience awaits.
• Capacity: 6 pax

10. Desert discovery
Magic Camps can help to organise a memorable incentive trip in the heart of Oman’s desert, with a luxury camp experience curated to a group’s needs.

In keeping with Berber style, a majlis (sitting room) is situated at the heart of the camp, which can be transformed for an ultimate Arabian Nights adventure. Guests will get to stay in luxurious, eco-friendly tents, while a range of experiences includes stargazing with an astronomer, fire shows, a falcon show, and sandboarding.
• Capacity: Any group size

11. Walk on the wild side
Take an exclusive behind-the-scenes tour of Phnom Tamao Wildlife Rescue Centre in Phnom Penh and meet some of the 1,200 animal residents that have been rescued from the clutches of Cambodia’s illegal wildlife trade.

The day experience includes hand-feeding elephants, visiting clouded leopards, gibbons and otters, hanging out with baby macaques, and visiting the nursery to see how baby animals are cared for until they can be released back into the wild wherever possible.
• Capacity: Groups of 10 pax

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