It is with great sadness that we pay tribute to Sandy Cutrone, Founder of Vista Travel Consultants, European Connection and a valued member of our Connections Advisory Board, as we received the devastating news of her passing away last week.

Sandy was a true industry innovator and a pivotal driving force in the development of the luxury European travel market and it is fair to say that all of us here at Connections truly admired her wealth of experience, knowledge and personable approach to work.

Sandy started her career as an Association Meeting Planner and when her children started school, she returned to work full time for large Incentive, Conference and Meetings companies, always specialising in Europe where she was based for several months each year.

In 1985, Sandy decided to open her own company; Vista Travel Consultants with two partner agents, specialising specifically in upscale luxury travel. Soon after its launch, Sandy opened a further two divisions; a full service MICE department, heavily engaged in providing professional Meetings and Incentives programmes for large corporations and professional associations and the other; a full service Tour Operation; European Connection which utilised the knowledge and many connections that she had made during her years and a European specialist.

Sandy and her team at European Connection were responsible for providing customised and imaginative itineraries for individuals and groups traveling to Europe and looking for a one-stop shop for expert assistance in planning, guidance and complete coordination of all trip details from start to finish. Her award-winning company has been internationally recognised as a reliable source for creating outstanding travel packages for discerning travellers.

Sandy joined our Connections board as a valued member last year and attended our meeting in Cannes in December 2018. She was a huge advocate of our brand and will be sorely missed by us all. Here are just a couple of pictures of her enjoying herself and creating meaningful relationships with industry peers.