We think of the extraordinary before our clients even know it exists,” says Barbara Nichuals, president and CEO of Bayside Travel in Bronxville, which customizes dream vacations all over the world for high-end clientele. This personal touch, along with a keen adaptability to marketplace changes, have helped the business grow into a top luxury-travel service with $8 million in annual sales.
Nichuals’ professional journey began 30 years ago, when she purchased Queens-based Bayside Travel, moving herself and the company to Westchester in 2000. Since then, Nichuals has acquired a number of local agencies, ultimately consolidating various locations into the current Bronxville office, where she maintains a staff of 10 full-time employees and 15 independent contractors.
Nichuals has maintained Bayside’s relevance by providing services and information “not easily found on the Internet,” she says. Claiming to be more “travel psychologist” than travel agent, her process involves a lengthy interview with her travelers, “to get to know their wishes, their bucket lists.” Then she and her globetrotting team “begin researching, making recommendations, setting the itinerary in place.” And whether clients plan to explore Japan, South America, or Antarctica, Bayside Travel provides an insider’s guide. “We vet locations in person, or through our expert international contacts,” Nichuals explains.
Also, Bayside’s affiliation with luxury consortia Virtuoso allows the agency to offer promotions, upgrades, and amenities travelers could not access on their own. In addition, Bayside offers emergency services 24/7. “Our clients are never alone,” Nichuals says.