Inaugural ULTRA Trendsetters Opens for Industry Thought Leaders

John McMahon during the Welcome Cermony

The first iteration of ULTRA Trendsetters, sister event to the intimate luxury event ULTRA Summit, commences today at The Driskill in Austin, TX.

ULTRA Trendsetters, organized by Questex Travel Group, publishers of Luxury Travel Advisor, also focuses on luxury travel, but is geared towards the forward-thinking advisors and supplier brands that are changing the way we think about modern luxury. 

“This event features the forward-thinking leaders of the industry,” said Questex Travel Group executive vice president, John McMahon. “Trendsetters pave the way in all industries and those who attend this event are among those leaders, carving a path, rather than waiting to follow and be left behind.”

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Guests were welcomed to Austin last night via a networking reception hosted by The Driskill and The Unbound Collection by Hyatt.

The event officially began this morning when Ruthanne Terrero, vice president of content and editorial director for Luxury Travel Advisor, presented “A Snapshot of Your Business,” which included the results of a survey advisors completed in advance of the event to gauge recent trends they have experienced in the luxury space. 

Terrero was then followed by T.J. Clark, co-founder/CEO of TurnKey Vacation Rentals with “Successful Startups’ Common Characteristics,” and finally a panel featuring Joshua Bush, CEO, Avenue Two Travel, Michael Holtz, founder, SmartFlyer, and Keith Waldon, founder and director, Departure Lounge who discussed how they have succeeded as luxury travel entrepreneurs.

Incidentally, Waldon also treated attendees to a tour of his new, cutting-edge storefront that recently evolved from a wine and coffee-centric bar, to an exotic, safari-themed travel experience.

The afternoon closed with one-to-one appointments between advisors and suppliers, followed by an excursion to famous music haunt Antone’s, to experience some of the live music Austin is known for.

Sponsors of the event include host venue The Driskill, The Unbound Collection by Hyatt, Visit Austin, the Las Vegas Convention & Visitors Authority, and Crystal.

ULTRA Trendsetters is an intimate luxury travel event that includes one-to-one appointments between advisors and suppliers, engaging presentations and discussions, hip networking functions, and thought-provoking educational content. For more information, visit

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