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Real-Time Retreats

Feasting with our Forefathers

Auberge Resorts of New England

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This week we are ‘Feasting with our Forefathers’ in a celebration of things to be thankful for, like the country in which we live, the exciting industry in which we work, our abundance, and access to the beautiful destinations we visit each week, such as the quaint New England inns of the Auberge Resorts Collection.

Real-Time Retreats - Auberge Resorts of New England

Auberge Resorts are known for ‘unforgettable experience in storied destinations’ like the picturesque locales of The White Barn Inn in Kennebunk, Maine, the Mayflower Inn & Spa in Washington, Connecticut, and The Vanderbilt in Newport, Rhode Island.

Global Sales Director, Gale McClurkan and Area Group Sales Manager, Elaine Bouchard-Clark will lead us through these distinctive small hotels, as unique and charming as their New England locales as we explore their history, and special culinary traditions.

As we do each week, we invite you to get into the spirit of our trips by dressing up, making a cocktail or your favorite Thanksgiving treat, and immersing yourself in the feel and spirit of these cozy inns. Think Thanksgiving ‘dressing,’ darlings (no, not that kind, though it is delicious!...) Pilgrims, Puritans, Pioneers and Native Americans, coming together to celebrate their harvest. And in reference to abundance...

This week we also want to raise awareness of both sides of our Thanksgiving traditions, our special guest this week is WineToWater founder, and CNN “Hero,” Doc Hendley, who will share with us his most recent work in the Navajo Nation, communities who often suffer the same indignities and shortages of safe drinking water as those in remote parts of the globe that WTW serves.

So, let’s talk turkey! - there’s a bounty of reasons to engage fully this week!

The generous folks at Auberge are donating a 2-night complimentary stay with breakfast for two at your choice of one of the three hotels - The Mayflower Inn & Spa, The Vanderbilt, or The White Barn Inn for a special raffle to support Wine To Water’s important work.

Here’s the deal! $50 provides a “Filter for a Family” in the Navajo Nation, which will ensure that family safe drinking water for up to a decade. Pledge $50 to this deserving cause and your name goes in a hat to be drawn at the end of the hour for this much needed getaway to a charming New England locale!

As usual, Kelly McAlister with Maui Jim will be throwing some shade at the participant who best and most creatively gets into “FEASTING WITH OUR FOREFATHERS” mode!

Video Replay

Gale McClurkan - Global Sales Director - Auberge Resorts Collection

Gale McClurkan

Global Sales Director, Auberge Resorts Collection

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Gale McClurkan started in hotel sales in 1998. After numerous roles with Ritz-Carlton, she jumped at the chance to join Auberge Resorts Collection as Global Sales Director, representing the entire brand portfolio.

Gale is a native Texan and lives in Coppell, Texas, with her husband, Steve, daughter, Olivia, and son Blake. She is addicted to any sport her kids participate in, as well as a huge fan of the Dallas Cowboys and Texas A&M Aggies.

Elaine Bouchard Clark - Area Group Sales Manager, Northeast Region

Elaine Bouchard Clark

Area Group Sales Manager, Northeast Region

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Last spring, Elaine was welcomed to The Auberge Resort Collection as The Area Group Sales Manager for the Northeast, representing The White Barn Inn, The Mayflower Inn and Spa, The Vanderbilt as well as Malliouhana in Anguilla!

Elaine is a true New Englander and Bostonian! She lives just north of the City in Newbury, Massachusetts with her husband Rob, an 18 yr old son Tripp and a 16 yr. old daughter, Phoebe and her 5 yr old Pug Lilly. She loves to watch her kids play Lacrosse or any Boston Sports Team! Most of all she loves to cook, entertain and surround herself by Family, Good Friends and a good playlist.

The Mayflower Inn & Spa - Washington, CT

The Mayflower Inn & Spa

Washington, CT — Located in the idyllic town of Washington in Connecticut, Mayflower Inn & Spa is an exquisite country retreat, nestled in 58 acres of beautifully landscaped gardens and woodland. Just a two hours’ drive from New York City, it is renowned as one of northeast America’s most distinguished luxury hideaways. Memories are made easily when you stay at the boutique hotel in Litchfield County, a portal to a simpler time, where the definitive measure of the good life is in soul-stirring moments rooted in the idyllic countryside.


A fresh and modern take on sophisticated New England style, set against the backdrop of a lavish English country house and three standalone cottages. Four-poster beds, oriental rugs, and stunning views onto nature embody the essence of the intimate country retreat.

The Mayflower Inn & Spa lobby


Surrounded by the beauty of the Connecticut countryside, a transportive spa sanctuary like no other. Enjoy a deep connection with nature while indulging in treatments rooted in modern science and inspired by ancient wisdom, all in cool, calming, sound proof spaces for unparalleled serenity. Experience nothing less than a rebirth of spirit and soul.

The Mayflower Inn & Spa
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The Vanderbilt - Newport, RI

The Vanderbilt

Newport, RI — Originally built in 1909 by Alfred Gwynne Vanderbilt, a scion of the Vanderbilt family, the property is a vintage Newport mansion meticulously restored to its former glory, just minutes from the charming waterfront. Come for elegant fireplaces and museum-quality artwork in the lobby entrance, Christy’s Gallery and Snooker Room—along with pampering worthy of any railway baron. In the summer, enjoy exquisite dining on the Garden Terrace and evening drinks along the popular rooftop bar with sweeping views of Newport Harbor.


  • 2 oz Brown Butter Pie Crust infused Bourbon
  • 1 oz Lemon Juice
  • 1 ¼ oz simply syrup
  • ½ oz vanilla liqueur
  • ¼ oz chai bitters
  • 1 egg white

Imagine if you put all the flavors of an apple pie into a whiskey sour! The resort bakes fresh pie crusts and infuses them into Kentucky bourbon along with brown butter and puff pastry. Cinnamon, nutmeg, and vanilla round out the flavor and an egg white gives it all the texture of traditional eggnog. The perfect end to a Thanksgiving meal!

The Vanderbilt billiards

The charming fireplaces at The Vanderbilt feel like a well-appointed home.

The Vanderbilt room with fireplace
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The White Barn Inn, Kennebunk, ME

The White Barn Inn

Kennebunk, ME — Located in the beautiful coastal town of Kennebunkport, White Barn Inn has been a beloved local landmark for over 150 years, synonymous with warm New England hospitality, rustic charm, and uncompromising attention to detail. Just a 90 minutes’ drive north of Boston, this inviting property is renowned as one of the country’s most distinctive getaways. At the White Barn Restaurant, award-winning dining and expertly choreographed service unfold.


Meticulously restored rooms in a landmark inn and private waterfront cottages offer utmost seclusion and sophisticated style in charming costal Maine. Luxurious amenities include fresh flowers, plush robes, flat-screen plasma televisions, and Prima Fleur toiletries.

The White Barn Inn room


Cook alongside their Chef in their renowned restaurant or enjoy a private cycling tour with the General Manager along miles of wooded trails lined with beautiful old pine trees. A world of unique pleasures await in coastal Maine.

The White Barn Inn - barn
turkey trot
My fat pants are just my regular pants now.


Thanksgiving is sure to bring up a memory or two (ok, maybe they’re nightmares). Football, overeating, family visits (is there enough wine?) Draw some inspiration before Wednesday’s call:

17 Mind-blowing eating contests -We’re über impressed by #8, and not impressed at all by #3, as we all remember our freshman year in college.

29 of the best Thanksgiving songs for your playlist

Dealing with difficult relatives during the holidays.

And if that doesn’t work, help for your liver the day after.

A $3 turkey hat - because I just met you, and this is gravy, but here’s my stuffing, so carve me maybe.


“For us wine represents the opportunity to gather around a table, share a meal and build relationships as friends. The Wine To Water community spirit is fueled by our passion to transform lives through the power of clean water.

Join us! Everyone has a seat at this table!”

Wine To Water

Some virtual backgrounds for you to use on our Zoom call, provided by Auberge Resorts Collection!

Kelly McAlister, Maui Jim Corporate Gifts

Kelly McAlister, Maui Jim

Kelly McAlister of Maui Jim will be with us on the calls each week as judge and jury to see which planner really goes all-in with the theme. So engage, be creative, and have fun... and you may be the winner!

She’ll be doing some gifting that will surely lift your shelter-in-place spirits!

Maui Jim

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