Wharekauhau Lodge, near Wellington

Michael Poliza - Photographer Extraordinaire

Michael Poliza - Photographer Extraordinaire

In April we organised Michael Poliza's trip to New Zealand.  As you can see from his website and his Facebook page, Michael is a superb photographer who has made his name in Africa.  Now it is the turn of Australia and New Zealand and you can see his latest works of art on Facebook.

We were very pleased to have been selected by Michael and thought we would share some of the challenges which show that a true DMC (Destination Management Company) does more than book hotels.

We were selected because of our reputation and because we are one of the New Zealand companies most experienced in melding helicopters with meaningful itineraries of the country.  We have performed several country-wide helicopter tours and have been featured as such by the Robb Report.

Firstly, we had to understand the wishes of the client - Michael Poliza's client - to see New Zealand through Michael Poliza's eyes.

Then we had to understand what Michael Poliza's eyes wanted to see.

Then we put together an itinerary, bearing in mind geography and weather, people and locations, downtime and activity which delivered to those wishes.

Then we had to select the pilots for the North Island, the South Island, with a detailed and intimate knowledge of those special places which would deliver the results.  Thank you Toby Clarke of Helipro.

Then the machines, the lodges, the experiences etc.

Then, as we knew the schedule was tight and that weather would play a part, we spoke with every lodge manager and negotiated special and more flexible cancellation arrangements.  They were all amenable, thanks to our longstanding mutual respect.  Same with the activity providers.

Then we ran it. 

Within 12 hours of being in-country we had the first of the schedule changes.  From then on we were juggling accommodation, special lunches, private powhiri (Maori welcome), high-end picnic lunches etc every day - several times a day.  Towards the end, the two helicopters split up and two further groups took to fixed wing, so we were dealing with 4 groups simultaneously, dovetailing their days to make use of the accommodation they had paid for, and picking up luggage from where it had been dropped.  This, while having at least 3 to 4 unused options (from trawlers to fishing guides to special lunches, to off-the-shelf activities) available a day.

All of this smooth, without fuss, allowing Michael and his clients to enjoy their time in New Zealand.  And now the photos as a result :)

HI JM,

we landed safe at Grasmere and have had another excellent day with a wonderful lunch break.

Thanks again for all your help it is indeed a pleasure working with you !

Michael Poliza

Jean-Michel