Wandermania on Tour Heads to Chicago

September 25, 2012

Blog, United States

Wandermania on Tour Logo

When the Chicago Passport Party wrapped, my time in the Windy City wasn’t quite over yet.  I checked in at the Omni Chicago Hotel, an all-suite hotel located in the heart of the Magnificent mile. Up next? Wandermania!

Wandermania on Tour is a series of travel blogger meet-ups in cities around the globe. Each meet-up is aimed at inspiring multicultural travel blogger attendees to take their work to the next level via creative and collaborative marketing and social media campaigns. The goal wasn’t to just be inspired, but to walk away with a plan.

Room service for breakfast at the Omni Chicago Hotel

All made from local (<400 miles) ingredients: Caramel apple french toast, mixed berries and creme, peach smoothie and ginger and lemongrass tea! You can even order/schedule room service online.

After a lazy Sunday morning of uploading pictures and the best hotel room service I’ve had in a looong time (see above), I headed down to 676 Restaurant and Bar (inside the Omni)  to meet up with Angela, AnaJanice, TraceyRosalind, Chelle – the first Wandermania crew.

Wandermani on Tour Chicago

The lovely Wandermania travel bloggers ladies!

Now I’ve been to a ton of conferences and meet ups before, but Wandermania was a breath of fresh air. First, the smaller, intimate size made it easier to interact and gave everyone a voice. Second, it was an informal gathering of diverse perspectives, from that of a full-time journalist, travel entrepreneur, PR professional, flight attendant and a lot in between. It was cool to see how a few changes in strategy and execution have really paid off big for some and where others could use a bit of improvement. The session was never judgmental or condescending or pushed any single agenda as the one and only blogging truth. We did however discuss 10 Travel Blogger Habits to Live By:

 Ten Travel Blogger Habits to Live By

  1. Attend conferences and meet ups.
  2. There’s a fine line between sharing and bragging.
  3. Visually stimulate and invoke emotions.
  4. Be a bit of a tease.
  5. Be a storyteller
  6. Be the expert.
  7. Go the extra mile in everything you do.
  8. Bring something to the table.
  9. Collaborate with integrity.
  10. Do a little something for someone else.

Third, we all left with a list of  action items to take our blogging and/or travel endeavors to the next level. What good is gaining all of this new information if you don’t do anything with it? And last we had the opportunity to sample the fine fare of 676 Restaurant & Bar AND a tour of the charcuterie cooler with Sous Chef, Dinesh!

Meats from the Charcuterie Cooler at 676 Restaurant at Omni Chicago Hotel

That lamb bacon was sooo good!!

Cheese trays from 676 Restaurant at the Omni Chicago Hotel

More cheese please!

Inside the charcuterie cooler at 676 Restaurant Omni Chicago Hotel

Quick peek into the charcuterie cooler. Duck prosciutto and much more for the fall menu coming soon!

Dinesh, the sous chef at 676 Restaurant & Bar, Omni Chicago

Dinesh, the sous chef at 676 restaurant at the Omni Chicago Hotel

Note: The Omni Chicago will be hosting Saturday cooking classes and wine pairings on select dates through December 15th. Based on our exceptional culinary experiences, I would highly recommend giving it some thought if your travels bring you to Chicago!

 What’s Next for Wandermania on Tour?

Want to know exactly what went down? Sorry, I can’t give you all of the details. You’ll just have to sign up for the next one in a city near you…

The next stop for Wandermania on Tour (@Wandermania #ontour) is London for the World Travel Market, hosted by Oneika Raymond (@OneikaTraveller) and Lola A. Åkerström (@LolaAkinmade). Hope to see you there.

Disclaimer: I was a guest of the Omni Chicago Hotel during my two night stay. All opinions are my own.
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About April D. Thompson

April D. Thompson is a published travel writer, freelance marketing consultant and global citizen. For more travel adventures, tips and advice, like the Absolute Travel Addict on Facebook, follow on Twitter, connect on Google+ and subscribe for free updates via e-mail. Happy travels!

View all posts by April D. Thompson

10 Responses to “Wandermania on Tour Heads to Chicago”

  1. Terri Says:

    That food looks fabulous! What a nice gathering! I’m hoping that Wandermania makes it to NYC some time. ;)

    Reply

  2. Wandermania On Tour Says:

    Awesome recap! See you in London! =)

    Reply

  3. Angela Myers Says:

    Awesome summary! I gained so much valuable information that day and made some new friends!

    It was overall a GREAT weekend.

    Reply

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