From holistic retreats and luxurious glamping stays, to cultural immersions and wildlife encounters, here are some fresh ideas to motivate top achievers
1. Prized tipples
Celebrate your top achievers with a night out at Jigger & Pony – Singapore’s top bar and Asia’s second best according to the 2022 Asia’s 50 Best Bars ranking.
Jigger & Pony has been around since 2012, growing its fan base steadily through the years with its festive atmosphere and never-ending creativity in cocktail craft.
Its new identity menu, launched in February 2023, builds on its strength in perfecting classic cocktails, as well as its promise to blaze even more impressive trails by besting itself.
As your top achievers savour refreshed classics like Pony Martini; familiar concoctions with a twist, such as Yuzu Whisky Sour; and crafts that draw on foreign influences, such as Korean Boilermaker and Soy Milk Punch, may they be inspired to push their own boundaries and aspire towards loftier goals just like the master craftsmen of Jigger & Pony.
• Capacity: Private parties are capped at 20 pax, with a minimum spend of S$2,000 (US$1,487) over a four-hour block
2. Track down the elusive snow leopard
Just Nature Expeditions is known to offer some transformational wildlife experiences to remote lands, where this particular expedition takes incentive groups to trek the slopes of Ladakh in India in search of elusive snow leopards.
Tours run for a minimum of seven nights, and can be extended to 11 nights. The itinerary will cover two locations, Ulley and Rumbak, known for snow leopard sightings, as well as offer an opportunity to interact with locals during their homestay accommodations.
• Capacity: 10 pax
3. A dreamy stay
The Drovers Dream is an outback accommodation experience at Kings Creek Station (located between Uluru and Alice Springs), with all creature comforts built in. Each luxurious tent features a plush queen bed, an ensuite bathroom, split air-conditioning system, an outdoor deck with seating, a barbecue area, and a fire pit for cooler evenings.
Incentive winners can sit out on the porch and gaze out at the incredible rocky outcrop that is the George Gill Range, admire the glittering stars without any light pollution, and watch the sunrise in the morning over the otherworldly canyon views.
Activities in the area include day hikes at Watarrka National Park, such as the South Wall Return Walk. Once the sun sets, Light-Towers, an immersive sound and light installation by acclaimed British artist Bruce Munro at Discovery Resorts – Kings Canyon, comes alive.
• Capacity: 10 pax
4. Meaningful gifting
If you are planning a travel reward trip to Singapore, be sure to start off the experience with a welcome gift pack that is a window to the city-state.
Fill it up with unique items crafted by Singapore artisans as well as home-grown brands that are trusted by generations.
Consider a refreshing face mist made of organic ingredients by Kew Organics; a charming accessory by Baju by Oniatta, a clothing line that reimagines batik for the modern wardrobe; a sweet treat with a twist – like chilli padi chocolate bonbons! – from local dessert queen, Janice Wong; or practical items sporting gorgeous designs by differently-abled artists at the Art Faculty social enterprise.
5. Take flight over the Southern Alps
Take to the skies with GCH Aviation and enjoy an epic aerial view of the Canterbury Plains. The gorgeous landscape looks like a vivid tapestry from up above, filled out with rolling green pastures, rugged stone formations, winding glacier rivers, and vast blue lakes, all of which are framed by the majestic Southern Alps. The experienced helicopter pilots will also point out points of interest, such as Castle Hill, a Narnia filming location featuring limestone boulder formations.
If weather permits, pilots will land on a snow-covered summit, if not, a landing may also be possible in the dramatic Waimakariri Gorge for more pictures.
• Capacity: 11 pax across two helicopters
6. Listen to your inner voice
Take your top achievers to Parihara Visual Art Therapy in Yogyakarta with the help of Werkudara Group, which offers a painting and music experience.
Guided by the founder Gabriela Fernandez, participants will explore and celebrate their inner feelings by first, listening to music and meditating. Once they are relaxed, the visual art therapy will start. Participants will be asked to express their feelings by drawing, letting their hands dance on the canvas to the rhythm of the music.
Groups can also learn more about each other and their paintings during a sharing at the end of the 180-minute session.
• Capacity: 200 pax
7. Dine under the stars
Instead of walls, the open-air Tali Wiru restaurant boasts commanding views of Uluru and the distant domes of Kata Tjuta in the background. Operating only between April and October every year, this intimate desert dining experience combines indigenous culture and fine gastronomic fare. Guests will be offered champagne and canapes upon arrival, as they gaze across the desert plains and take in the stunning sunset.
As the light fades, guests are led to the peak of a dune, where the indulgent four-course dinner begins. Dishes here are built around a non-indigenous main ingredient, where its flavours are uplifted and transformed by indigenous sauces and accompaniments, while the wines are sourced from all over Australia.
After dinner, a local storyteller will captivate guests with celestial creation stories, and point out various stars and markers in the sky like the Southern Cross. Hot chocolate and cognac are then offered around a roaring fire pit, and indigenous hunting implements and weapons are explained and passed around.
• Capacity: 20 pax
8. Hike an ancient pilgrimage route
An ancient Buddhist pilgrimage network dating back thousands of years and the only UNESCO World Heritage Site route in Japan, Kumano Kodo reveals aspects of traditional culture at every turn.
Incentive planners can choose from a luxury walking trip over several days or day trips that introduce breathtaking sights along the route such as the Nachi Waterfall and Kumano Nachi Taisha Grand Shrine. For example, Sydney-based agent Only Luxe offers a 3D2N private, guided Kumano Kodo luxury walking tour.
• Capacity: 12 pax
9. Learn the magic of Thai cooking
Cooking with Poo is a Thai cooking school in the heart of Bangkok’s Klong Toey district. The school is dedicated to teaching the secrets of Thailand’s world-renowned cuisine, with much of the proceeds going back into the local community.
Overseen by Saiyuud Diwong (aka Khun Poo), the classes – there is a different menu for every day of the week – have attracted the likes of Jamie Oliver to learn from the self-taught chef.
Before the cooking starts, participants will meet early to visit the local wet market to learn how to pick the best produce before heading to the school.
• Capacity: Groups of 12
10. Natural engagements
In the foothills of Mount Kinabalu this trip organised by Asian Trails to Sabah, Malaysia, offers a glimpse into the lives of the locals.
The itinerary will begin with a scenic hike, followed by a visit to a community lodge where guests will learn about the agricultural traditions of the ethnic Dusun people.
Delegates will also get to engage with local growers and makers, discover the traditional way of making coffee, learn about natural honey cultivation, taste local snacks at a pineapple factory, and give back by supporting the community’s cottage industries.
• Capacity: Any group size
11. Luxury getaways
A curated luxury experience in Dubai is the perfect travel reward experience. Empirance is able to curate a range of unforgettable adventures to help groups discover Dubai in a fresh light.
For example, top achievers can marvel at stunning bird’s-eye views of Dubai’s skyscrapers from a helicopter and the region’s vast desert from a hot air balloon, and soak up the spectacular coastline from the comfort of a super yacht.
• Capacity: 10 pax