Mortimer Harvey manages Travel Channel's marketing and public relations in South Africa.
Nick Thorogood, SVP Content & Marketing at Scripps EMEA, says, "It's been an important focus for Travel Channel this year not only to bring fresh, new programming on-air, but also to localise content specifically for South Africa. We are pleased that Luxury Uncovered now includes episodes filmed here which uncover two of South Africa's typical luxury destinations."
Jenny Powell has been lucky enough to experience some of the very best hospitality the world has to offer and now Travel Channel is giving her the chance to find out what it really takes to deliver five, six or even seven star service. Luxury Uncovered
will reveal the inner secrets of the service specialists, from the gourmet chef of the Delaire Graff Estate, to the bespoke butler at The Wellesley; how do they ensure the attention to detail that their customers expect, get it right every time and, most importantly, do it all with a smile on their face? It's clearly all in the detail so whether checking the gold leaf decoration is absolutely perfect at the Emirates Palace in Abu Dhabi or trimming the greens with nail scissors at Gleneagles in Scotland, Jenny learns that accuracy is measured by the millimetre.
With further lessons in etiquette on the Trans-Siberian Express in Russia and the Oceana Beach Reserve in South Africa, Jenny discovers that ensuring a first class service for the guests require a first class effort from the unsung heroes of the luxury lifestyle. Episode 1 - Emirates Palace, Abu Dhabi
Exploring the jaw-dropping Emirates Palace, Jenny Powell will be going in at the deep end by following the hotel's gold specialist as he tours the estate looking for gold leaf that is less than perfect. Then she will be schooled by one of The Ladies In Red, the ultimate front of house team that anticipate the needs of the hotels VVIP's, before making a splash in the water sports arena by helping to clean and maintain every grain of sand, diving to remove sea urchins from the pristine waters. Her final role will be adding yet more gold; this time the kind you can eat, with the executive cake decorator renowned for his intricate designs. Episode 2 - The Wellesley, England
During her stay at The Wellesley, Jenny Powell is taken under the wing of Martin, The Wellesley's Head Butler, who teaches her everything from unpacking perfectly to laying out the room for a VIP who's coming to stay in the penthouse suite for the next month. She is given a guide to chauffeuring guests by Keith in his Rolls Royce, making sure that this very special mode of transport is immaculate for every journey. Afternoon Tea is a key part of any London hotel experience, so Jenny is put through her paces by the Wellesley's own tea connoisseur and its dedicated pastry team. Finally Jenny is given a lesson in the world of the humidor and taught to expertly trim cigars in their special lounge. Episode 3 - Trans-Siberian Express, Russia
Jenny goes back to a golden age of travel when she boards the luxurious steam-powered Trans-Siberian Express. Whilst travelling onboard through Russia, Jenny is forced to get her hands dirty when she is tasked with cleaning the carriages from top to bottom, shovelling coal into the steam engine, preparing the cabins for passengers and handling the pressure of serving five-course meals and silver service on a moving train. Episode 4 - Delaire Graff Wine Lodge, South Africa
With Table Mountain as a fairly stunning backdrop, Jenny Powell is schooled in the gourmet food and wine world of Delaire Graf. There she learns the secrets of giving guests the best experience of their wine-growing and -making. It's topped off by a trip to the estates own diamond boutique, where she learns the ropes and is rewarded with a prize of a diamond necklace of her own, albeit for one night only. Episode 5 - Six-star cruise, Greece
The six-star Crystal Symphony is cruising the Ionian Seas when Jenny Powell comes aboard. Her first task in to get to grips with looking after the private and public areas of the ship with the Executive Housekeeper. She is taught how to 'turn down' the penthouse suite with the butler and room attendants, before tending to the ship's 'Living Wall', an extravagant floral and plant display on deck with the onboard florist. Jenny is then instructed by the ship's Cruise Director, whose job it is to look after the entertainment and edification of every guest. Jenny helps him make his daily TV review for guests and host a glamorous cocktail party for guests, before finally being called to the Bridge to meet the man himself.Episode 6 - Gleneagles, Scotland
As the home to the 2014 Ryder Cup, Gleneagles is one of the world's foremost sporting leisure experiences. Jenny Powell is thrown in at the deep end when she learns the art of golf caddying and tending to the immaculate Kings Course greens, including trimming the hole by hand with scissors. She dons chef whites for a shift in Scotland's only two-Michelin-starred restaurant and discovers how to lay the perfect table. Then she is schooled in the arcane practice of falconry before being taught the estate's signature whiskey cocktail by their Whiskey Ambassador. Episode 7 - Ritz Carlton Hotel, Russia
Jenny Powell travels to Red Square in Moscow to see how one of the most iconic hotel names in the world provides service and a great guest experience. She starts with Housekeeping where the Ritz Carlton standard must be maintained in every room, for every guest. She is schooled in the delicate world of the Concierge, including the special Ritz Carlton proposal service, which ensures that would be suitors have the perfect environment in which to pop the question. Then, in the hotel's rooftop bar she's taught the tricky art of sabrage; ceremonially opening a champagne bottle with a sabre.Episode 8 - Ocean Beach reserve, South Africa
At Oceana Beach Reserve, Jenny Powell will start with a trip out with the rangers, tending to animals like rhino and springbok, looking after the watering holes and honing the art of guiding guests as a ranger. Back at the beach, with the help of Jacques, the executive chef, she's taught to prepare the perfect beach barbecue and fishing experience for guests before returning to the range for a sundowner trek on the reserve as twilight draws in. Episode 9 - Stoke Park, England
Staying in the room where Renee Zellwegger romanced Hugh Grant in Bridget Jones
, Jenny Powell's time at one of the world's most historic country clubs and spas gets off to a good start. First up Jenny has to learn how to motivate the guests when she runs her very own exercise class, before getting hands-on experience of massage therapy in the award-winning spa. She's given an intensive work out in maintaining tennis courts graced by the likes of Djokovic, before getting her own massage as a treat for all her efforts. Episode 10 - Super Yacht, Mediterannean
Jenny Powell boards The Aurelia, a 37-metre sporty and luxurious super yacht, in Sardinia and meets the small team of six crew before starting her first task. She begins with the basics of Yacht Brokering with Lindsey Childs. Jenny then makes a quick change before heading to the galley kitchen where she meets Shane, Aurelia's head chef and budding Heston Blumenthal. He talks Jenny through his style of molecular gastronomy in the galley. Jenny then helps Chief Stewardess Alison prepare canapes and drinks on deck for a very willing guinea pig, Captain Guy Booth. As the sun sets over Porto Cervo harbour, Jenny is instructed in serving Captain Guy a sumptuous dinner. The following morning, Jenny is swabbing the decks and hanging from the hull with the first mate and learning how much work goes into keeping a super yacht shipshape. Finally she's shown the super toys that go with a super yacht before being taken for a well-earned spin on a two-man Sea Doo off the coast of Corsica. About Jenny Powell
Jenny Powell's presenting career started in 1986 when she was chosen to front the cult music programme, No Limits
, for BBC2. She went on to present Disney, Saturday morning shows and Wheel of Fortune
for ITV. Jenny now presents The Health Lottery
on Channel 5, Daybreak
on ITV, Britain's Secret Streets
and on Travel Channel, Luxury Uncovered
. She has two daughters.
Her family originates from South Africa, with her parents arriving in England two years before she was born. Jenny spent her childhood in Essex, leaving school with nine O-levels and three A-levels.
She attended the world-famous Italia Conti Academy of Theatre Arts, where she fuelled her passion and talent for dancing and performing. About Travel Channel
Travel Channel is the world's leading international travel broadcaster, transmitting 24 hours a day in 22 languages to more than 130 countries across Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Asia-Pacific. Travel Channel International is part of Scripps Networks International, the global development arm of Scripps Networks Interactive, Inc. The company's lifestyle media portfolio also comprises popular lifestyle television and internet brands Food Network, HGTV, DIY Network, Cooking Channel and country music network Great American Country. Travel channel can be found on DStv channel 179. More information can be found at www.travelchanneltv.com
. About Scripps Networks International
Scripps Networks International is the global development arm of Scripps Networks Interactive, Inc. (NYSE: SNI). The growing global presence of Scripps Networks International includes the launch of Food Network in the United Kingdom, Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) and Food Network Asia. Fine Living Network, a full-spectrum lifestyle television channel and interactive brand, is available across more than 60 EMEA countries.
Scripps Networks Interactive is one of the leading developers of lifestyle-oriented content for television and the Internet, where on-air programming is complemented with online video, social media areas and e-commerce components on companion websites and broadband vertical channels. The company's media portfolio includes popular lifestyle television and Internet brands HGTV, Food Network, Travel Channel, DIY Network, Cooking Channel, country music network Great American Country and Asian Food Channel.