[On a familiarisation trip to Riga] I had no idea about Riga. It has opened my mind up to Riga. I found it a very pleasant and interesting place to visit. I was interested to see if Riga would be suitable for our concert tours and also interested to meet members of the Club Europe team. They were very helpful, engaging and encouraging. It was really nice to form a personal connection with Jonathan and Tom which I think will support the ease of planning future trips. I enjoyed the itinerary, we managed to fit in a wide variety of activities. I was really impressed with the food. I had an idea that Latvian food would not be great (particularly being a vegetarian). I thought the trip was very well organised. I really enjoyed the boat trip and the trip to the Opera House.
Hannah was helpful and efficient, and successfully dealt with all the changes we threw at her. Alberto was also a positive manager and helped us to provide a bike tour, boat trip and restaurant meal for the choir. I was most impressed with Club Europe’s positive attitude towards our requirements which changed several times in the lead-up to the tour. Overall: An efficient organisation that provided us with a good value, enjoyable and successful choir tour.
[On a church concert] The acoustics were excellent, a warm sound and good organ. We sang from the organ loft, as advised by the local church staff. The organist enjoyed his organ solo. There was spontaneous applause from the audience after several pieces, plus they stood and clapped for some time at the end and thanked us in person when some of the choir went down to meet them after the concert. The conductor was given flowers! [On a concert in Riga Cathedral] We had applause and enjoyed the acoustics of the choir and marvelous organ. The organ solo was impressive in such a lovely sound-space. Once again there were flowers for the organist and conductor, plus thanks from the resident organist who played during parts of the service.
The bike tour was fascinating and the guides fulsome with their information, and were very friendly. The boat trip lasted one hour, and was enjoyable.
The location of the hotel was excellent – everything we wanted to access was within easy walking distance. It exceeded expectations and was clean and quiet.
Eva was always clear in her instructions for timing and arrived early at the hotel or venue to make sure everything was arranged. She took us on a walking tour which was full of information and entertainment. She has a wonderful sense of humour which brightened our experience of Riga (especially as it was very cold/wet). She helped the organist and conductor to gain access to the various venues for rehearsals, encouraged members of the public to come and listen to us, liaised with the church officials well. A hugely positive contribution.
Director of Music
Alahree was first class as ever. It was a pleasure to work with Alberto. He responded promptly and efficiently. The inspection visit in November was hugely beneficial and made the whole process of planning the concerts and itinerary so much more straightforward. It’s hard to think how anything could have improved on this trip – it was superb in every way! Everyone absolutely loved Riga and Latvia. The response to the whole tour has been entirely positive.
[on a church concert] The concert was certainly a success and the audience response was very heartening and we appreciated the gift of flowers for our soloist and me. This is a lovely venue in a great location with a fine 4 manual organ. Our organist was in his element. All three venues were appropriate for our group – we enjoyed singing in all of them and our performances improved markedly over the three concerts which was very satisfying and everyone ended up feeling proud of themselves.
I knew that people would enjoy Turaida having been there in November and we were blessed with a sunny warm day which made it especially memorable and I was so glad that we included Rundale – all those who came found it most interesting. Everyone found the canal trip relaxing and enjoyable. All the pre-ordered meals worked very well with efficient service and friendly, helpful staff. Our members did lots of different things in their free time, including the Occupation Museum and the Art Nouveau and we all enjoyed wandering round the Old Town.
Everyone loved the hotel – I heard not a single negative comment from anyone. Please pass on our thanks – we couldn’t have been happier.
Aija was on hand every step of the way to assist and liaise as necessary. She could not have not have been more helpful and was always willing to go the extra mile. She gave us a wonderful insight into all things Latvian, dealt with every eventuality calmly and professionally, had a lovely sense of humour and even sang the Latvian equivalent of ‘Happy Birthday!’ We all became very fond of her. She was a real gem.
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