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All-Chaîne Cruise

By Isabella Overend, Nassau Bailli
In May 2012, Chaîne confrères from across the globe gathered for the first-ever all-Chaîne cruise. The Wind Surf was our home for eight days while we explored some of the Mediterranean’s most beautiful locales. Upon boarding, we were served mimosas, which set the festive tone for the entire trip. Captain Alan MacAry charmed us in his Scottish brogue. “I want to put your minds at ease. I do have a driver’s license,” he joked. Caribbean/Atlantic Islands Bailli Provincial Ron Overend welcomed South Africa Bailli Délégué Honoraire Allison Rutowitz and her delegation as well as the Canadian contingent. Confrères from his region extended their Bahamian hospitality to all. Our first stop was Portoferraio for an al fresco feast at La Chiusa Winery. Due to rain, however, the luncheon was relocated to a hotel in an equally lovely setting beneath sunny skies. The picturesque Portofino was likewise spectacular, and sunshine smiled upon us. While some attendees took guided tours, others relaxed at the Splendido Hotel & Spa, dining on a terrace surrounded by lush flora overlooking the Med. Back on board, celebrity Chef Art Smith, assisted by 2011 International Young Chefs competition winner Reilly Meehan, who hails from the United States, prepared a special dinner for us. Our next port featured “lights, camera, action” at the Cannes Film Festival, where we star-gazed for two days. We could not resist lurking near the red carpet to glimpse the actresses in their stunning gowns. (The men looked none too shabby either.) On the second evening, we enjoyed a barbecue on our yacht while the lights of the Côte d’Azur illuminated the sky. A stop in St. Tropez was followed by further excitement in Monte Carlo, where the Grand Prix was in full swing. Even those without tickets could hear the roar of the cars everywhere. On Saturday, fourteen new members, including Professionnel du Vin Neill Trimble of Banfi Vintners, were inducted into the U.S. Bailliage. Bailli Délégué Honoraire Rutowitz inducted Professionnel du Vin Andrew Harris of Anthonij Rupert Wines. Chef Smith prepared another wonderful feast, paired with Banfi, Anthonij Rupert, and Bonaccorsi wines. Sommelier Ian Cauble, the U.S. representative who won the 2011 International Young Sommeliers competition, impressed us with his wine lectures. The Italian and French Rivieras offered unparalleled beauty and luxury. However, as much as we enjoyed the yacht and its crew, the exciting excursions, and the lavish food and wines, nothing matched deepening bonds with Chaîne friends from around the world.
Canada Bailli Délégué Hon. Hayo Maier, South Africa Bailli Délégué Hon. Allison Rutowitz, Nassau Bailli Isabella Overend and C/AI Bailli Provincial Ron Overend