We took our Slimmer Award winners on a trip of a lifetime, for a four night stay in the glamourous Monte Carlo, home to the rich and famous, to give them a taste of the jet set life . . .
After flying out from a wet and windy Luton airport, we touched down at Nice airport and were whisked away to the chic Monte Carlo Bay Hotel, with its spectacular sea and mountainside views.
We enjoyed a swanky buffet lunch overlooking the bay before slimmers and their partners were whisked up to Monte Carlo Palace for our first photo shoot in the surrounding streets.
Before the trip, all our slimmer winners had been treated to a personal shopping session with a stylist and chosen a new outfit to wear on their individual photoshoots, which they each experienced in different locations, during our stay.
Our Woman of the Year, Nickael Briggs, said she’d loved wearing something for the photo shoot that she would never have considered before.
“I’ve never been anywhere like this before; it’s a once-in-a-lifetime experience,” said Nickael, who has lost 9st and dropped from a dress size 22 to a 10/12 with Cambridge Weight Plan. “I feel like a celebrity and am wearing different clothes since losing weight, like this outfit. I always covered up my body before, but this time I have packed a bikini – the first time I’ve worn one on holiday – and fitted jeans and short sleeve tops, it’s great!”
Our Man of the Year, Lee Ashman, said he still has to stop pinching himself.
“From the first moment of winning Man of the Year until this, it’s been incredible,” said Lee, who has lost 14st 2lbs – half his body weight – and dropped from a size 54 inch waist to a 34 inch waist. “I’m a massive F1 fan, so just driving through that tunnel to the hotel has been a huge thrill for me. It’s all been incredible.”
After dinner in a delightful Italian restaurant, which we had exclusively hired for the evening, our slimmers headed to their contemporary rooms to catch up on sleep from a very early start.
It looked like rain was going to spoil the boat trip we’d planned from the French Riviera resort of Cannes on day two, but the sun came out as we set foot on the stunning Ile Saint Honarat. This island is inhabited by monks who tend to the vineyards and olive groves, and we enjoyed walks around the gorgeous scenery.
This was our New Me winner Jill’s first holiday for five years.
“It’s fantastic and all so well organised,” said Jill, who has lost 12st 9lbs with CWP and dropped from a dress size 32 to a 14. “We have been so well looked after and haven’t even had to think about what to do. “
A wine tasting was followed by a three-course lunch on the island, before we boarded the boat back.
The joker of the pack was definitely Marcus Watts, our Man of the Year runner up, who has now become a Consultant, like many of the winners, was sending motivational social media videos to his slimmers . . . and even befriended a couple on the boat back from the island, who then started videoing him!
“I’ve made so many memories and good friends on this trip,” said Marcus. “Losing weight has changed me into a much more social person. Before this, I would have stayed in the hotel complex and made excuses not to do anything. Now I’m the life and soul of the party.”
Back in Cannes, we wandered around the local antiques market and had free time for shopping.
Day three saw the only rain of the trip but it didn’t dampen our spirits as we headed into the uber-glamorous setting of Casino Monte Carlo for a look around, followed by lunch at the art nouveau Café de Paris.
The medieval village of Eze was our first stop on day four and where slimmers were able to walk to the top of the winding cobbled streets for bird’s-eye views of the surrounding countryside.
We then headed into the perfume factory of Fragonard where we all had the chance to make our own unique fragrance.
The true wow factor of our holiday came on our last evening when we had a gala dinner at the Villa Ephrussi de Rothschild. After Champagne and canapés, our slimmers and their partners were allowed to wander freely around the museum and given a son et lumiere display of the incredible fountains in the gardens, which were put on especially for us.
“It’s fantastic,” said our New Me winner, Alyson Syms, “I find it all a bit surreal that, just because I decided to change my life and lose 12st 5lbs with Cambridge Weight Plan, I have won this incredible holiday.”
Our final day was spent chilling before the evening flight home and Daniella Day, our Social Hero winner, had her photo shoot in the grounds of our hotel.
Daniella, who has lost 4st with CWP, brought her boyfriend Declan McManus on the holiday. This was their first trip abroad together and they had an amazing time.
“Sitting outside on the balcony of our hotel room, looking over Monaco, has been incredible and we don’t know how we can top this on our next holiday!”
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