Press Coverage: Independent agent opens outdoor shop that comes with ‘hygge’, Travel Gossip


Innovative independent travel consultant Jo Shayler is opening an agency in the outdoor patio of her local gift shop in the Essex town of Frinton.


She will be open for business every Wednesday from 25 August in The Patio of Great Danes on Connaught Avenue.


Jo said the idea of her occupying the outdoor space came about when she shopped at Great Danes and met owners Mike and Birgitte McLain, who later used her to book their holidays and recommended her to local friends and colleagues.


Jo, who specialises in luxury beach escapes, honeymoons, weddings, food and wine trips, multi-centres and groups, said The Patio is the ‘perfect environment’ for meeting local people looking for a personal travel advisor.


Even though the agency is in the airy outdoors, she said there’s no danger she or her clients will get cold, even in the winter. “In great Danish tradition they have the ‘hygge’ sorted for the winter months. Infrared heaters and a fabulous outdoor fire pit too. I’ve done some practice runs during the winter and it worked fine,” she said.


Jo is an independent consultant with Holidayplease and the agency will be known as ‘Holidaysplease on Connaught’.


Fittingly, the shop used to be a travel agency, called Connaught Travel, prior to the McLain’s moving in there 19 years ago.


Mike said: “The last 18 months have taught us the importance of having a local presence built on loyal clients and a personalised service.


“Jo is equally passionate about those values and one of the few positives to come out of this crisis has been the value and security in booking holidays with an accredited travel agent. She is a pleasure to work with, listens to her clients and uses her incredible industry knowledge and relationships to find great choices.”


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