Lisa Bridge Berenstein, President and COO, Ben Bridge Jeweler
The newly appointed president and chief operating officer of Ben Bridge Jeweler is a fifth-generation stakeholder in the family business and the companyâ€™s first female president. Sheâ€™s also an avid traveler who packs her suitcase as often as once a week for work and plans leisure trips with an eye toward inspiration for her Lisa Bridge Collection jewelry line. Where next? Cuba, â€œsooner rather than later,â€� and Botswana, with a group of Ben Bridge associates, to trace the journey of a diamond.Â Here, a few of her top travel experiences to date:
I had an incredible trip to Peru last year and havenâ€™t stopped thinking about it since then. I fell in love with the verdant hills and fascinating culture. There is a great sense of adventure there at many levels, whether itâ€™s hiking Inca ruins, visiting with exotic animals, or sleeping in a cliffside pod. I have a long list for my next trip!
One of my favorite trips was to a dude ranch in Tucson. We went with a group of friends and had a ball riding horses, penning cattle, and hiking among the saguaros. We had such a great time we decided it had to be a new tradition. In our usual lives, we may not be excellent equestrians, but we were quite the cowpokes on the dude ranch.
Cruising South America
We took an incredible Crystal Cruise to South America a few years ago for my parentsâ€™ anniversary. We started with a few days in Buenos Aires, loving the colorful buildings, vibrant culture, and great food before getting on board. We visited a couple of places in Uruguay and about half a dozen in Brazil, one more beautiful than the next.
Buzios, Brazil, stands out as one of the best days ever. We spent the morning exploring and shopping and then my sister-in-law directed us to lunch and the afternoon lounging at the Rocka Beach Lounge & Restaurant. The restaurant was on a blue painted deck overhanging the most spectacular crescent of beach, had the freshest fish, and was all themed after our favorite champagne, Veuve Clicquot. We spent the afternoon lounging on giant daybeds beneath Veuve umbrellas and dancing in the ocean. We never wanted to leave.
Around the World
Another amazing trip took my husband Gilad and me around the world. We danced at a friendâ€™s wedding in a park in New Orleans, flew from there to Bangkok to visit my suppliers and see my jewelry being made, went up north to Chiang Mai, flew south and cruised through the Phi Phi islands, and then ate falafel and visited Giladâ€™s family in Israel. It was a whirlwind and quite a trip to pack for.
Visiting the Maldives on our honeymoon was like stepping in to every Instagram post weâ€™d seen and article weâ€™d read. The color of the water was unmatched, and staying in a villa perched over it allowed us to soak in every moment.Â My husband and I experienced two different properties, the Park Hyatt Hadahaa and the St. Regis Vommuli â€“ it was fun to see different islands. The Maldives is the only country in the world made up exclusively of atolls, so island life is what itâ€™s all about.Â Our favorite outing was learning about island formation and visiting five islands at various stages. We snorkeled at two different island reefs, lunched beneath the single tree on a deserted island, and finished by visiting yet another a local island.Â The tour gave us a greater understanding of the forces that shaped the country.
We loved staying at the Four Seasons Park Lane in London. The location is ideal; it is close to everything and easily walkable. We loved the spa; the massage room had an expansive view of the city.
One of the most special hotels I have experienced is the Aman Tokyo.Â The quality of every part of the experience was extraordinary and was perfectly attuned to the Japanese culture. The clean architectural lines, the sweeping city views, and the generous team all made our stay unforgettable. It was a perfect refuge after a busy day exploring bustling Tokyo.Â We were there over the New Year and the staff prepared traditional foods and ceremonies for us.Â New Yearâ€™s morning they performed traditional opening of the sake drum to ward off evil spirits, and prepared an auspicious breakfast to give us long life, good fortune, and blessings for the year ahead.
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