I've been fortunate to work with wonderful colleagues in both arts and travel over the years, and some have kindly shared their experience of working with me and their ardent support of my founding Nine Muses Travel.
There are people you meet in the course of a career that upon the first encounter, you instinctively know they are remarkable. Something stands out, not just in the way they do their job, but also in their honesty, compassion and integrity. Danielle Dybiec is that kind of person. I had the pleasure of working with Danielle for 2 years when I was Vice President of Sales for an exclusive, affinity-based group tour operator. Our travelers were high-level donors of educational institutions (many Ivy League), preeminent art museums, garden societies and theater groups. Danielle was responsible for exploring and developing engaging travel experiences worldwide, and in addition, she was our in-house specialist for theater groups because of her background in the performing arts. She was well-known for adding special touches into her itineraries and she had a knack for arranging privileged access for her groups that never failed to deliver those "wow" moments every traveler loves.
Thanks to her keen insight, creativity and skill at discovering hidden destinations, Danielle opened up new destinations such as the Hudson River Valley, which grew to be an oft-requested and repeatedly successful region. Another example, she thoughtfully designed a London & Edinburgh Fringe Festival tour where the group was well-navigated in the midst of Fringe energy with pre-arranged tickets and exclusive private activities. Besides her expertise in the UK and Hudson Valley, she was an integral part of our team working on Portugal and People-to-People tours to Cuba.
Danielle is a highly-skilled analytical thinker and entrepreneur who knows how to build a trip to exceed expectations - for the traveler as well as the sponsoring organization. Her relationship-building skills are exceptional and she forms respectful connections with suppliers (hotels, etc.) who ultimately deliver the best possible experience for the travelers.
Danielle has an inspired, collaborative spirit and is a consummate professional. I'm thrilled she has decided to start her own business, and I wholeheartedly recommend Nine Muses Travel to group planners looking to organize culturally-themed trips because you couldn't be in better hands than with Danielle Dybiec.
Travel Industry Consultant
I worked with Danielle during my time overseeing The Metropolitan Museum of Art's "Travel with The Met" program, and Danielle was working for The Met's tour operator. Danielle was an absolute pleasure to work with! Producing 30+ trips a year with 600+ travelers, there was a ton of work that went into planning every trip to make sure it was perfect and up to the standards of our audience.
I worked with Danielle on many trips, but the most memorable was planning The Met's first domestic trip to New York’s Hudson Valley. This was a jam-packed itinerary with tons of sites and even more personalized experiences. Danielle put an incredible amount of time and effort into researching everything ahead of time to make sure that every detail was perfect. She personally visited every site and introduced herself to all hosts. With many tricky back roads, narrow driveways and steep inclines, she drove and tested every route and ended up hiring an expert driver with the perfect size bus for the challenging roads ahead. Attention to detail is something Danielle does best!
In addition, she was always responsive and open to suggestions and feedback. Again, with the Hudson Valley trip, there was a ton of collaboration with rounds of review, adjusting the plans or coming up with new ideas. Because of Danielle's hard work and passion, we put together a very special trip to inaugurate The Met's domestic travels. When working with Danielle you receive hands-on expertise and willingness to go above and beyond. All her trips were extremely personalized and never felt generic. Participants raved about the Hudson Valley trip, with 100% rating the itinerary "Excellent" on their departure surveys. Basically, there is no basic with Danielle, only special and unique.
A trip organized by Danielle is a trip in line for success. You will receive high-quality service and professionalism, plus you will be extremely pleased with the results. Because of her past work experience, Danielle has both the knowledge of a travel professional and understands the needs of the client. This is what makes working together truly a delight. As the client, I had no worries about the outcome. I trusted Danielle's creativity and desire to make sure everything was perfect. To anyone reading this looking to work with Danielle, stop thinking and do it!
Devon C. Lawrence
Founder and Principal, Clark Lawrence Consulting, Inc.
JOSEPH V. MELILLO
In my 35 years of working at the Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM), there are few professionals who have worked within this cultural institution who have proved to be valuable both from a personal standpoint and a business outlook, and Ms. Danielle Dybiec is such an individual. She is a woman with native intelligent gifts, personable, energetic, trustworthy, and a humanitarian. With her work she is goal-oriented, a delightful team player, diligent with details and passionate about people and servicing their needs responsibly. It is without reservation that I recommend her to all who are seeking her advice, creative ideas, and services from Nine Muses Travel for themselves or their clients.
Joseph V. Melillo
Executive Producer Emeritus
Danielle created an exemplary itinerary for Theatre for a New Audience's 2016 one-week theatre tour to London and Stratford-upon-Avon, and I had the pleasure of accompanying the tour with TFANA’s wonderful supporters. We were all well-traveled, seasoned theatergoers and went with high expectations, and the caliber of activities Danielle planned delighted all of us. I especially appreciated the discretion and finesse with which Danielle approached the personal and professional contacts I shared, including my dear friend Cicely Berry with whom we were privileged to share a private lunch at the Royal Shakespeare Company's home in Stratford.
In addition to Cicely, Danielle arranged other exclusive events with prominent British artists: directors, a playwright, a lead actress, a well-known theater critic and a personal welcome from the Artistic Director of a major London institution - all directly related to the productions we were seeing. She also arranged visits to restaurants and museums. Every element of our tour was thoughtful, creative, relevant to our interests and representative of TFANA. The tour’s guests had a terrific time. We talked in the morning over breakfast or in the evening in a restaurant or bar. While the trip provided new revenue for TFANA, even more precious was the time and space to get to know each other and experience theatre and art together.
Danielle joined us as tour director and handled all logistics seamlessly including our well-situated hotels and excellent restaurants. She sensitively participated with our group and knew when to give us space. Now that Danielle started Nine Muses Travel, TFANA would hire her company, and I highly recommend Danielle and Nine Muses Travel. Danielle's expertise in both culture and travel combined with her graciousness, integrity and logistical gifts are of real quality.
Founding Artistic Director
Theatre for a New Audience
Danielle developed and operated a trip to London in Spring 2016 for a group of supporters to the arts organization for which I was the Director of Development. As it had been some years since our company had planned a trip of this kind, there was a lot of discussion about what the trip should be and how it should work. As we collaborated about where to stay, the length and price of the trip, the outings, etc., she was helpful and patient, going above and beyond to accommodate our changing requests. Danielle gave our company significant care and focus and brought vast knowledge of the performing arts to our trip, adding dozens of unique experiences and touches to make it truly special for our group. In London as our tour director, she was reliable, gracious and a joy to work with, and our travelers were extremely happy and felt very taken care of. At the time, she was with a tour operator who we chose because we knew and trusted Danielle. I'm happy she formed her own company, Nine Muses Travel, because what she brings to both the arts and travel industries is so unique. She puts your goals first and will elevate your company’s profile everywhere you travel. I would book a trip with Danielle again in a heartbeat. She is terrific!
Nonprofit Arts Fundraiser