“I am absolutely thrilled to have Jessica join my team and bring her expertise in the luxury sector along with her passion for travel and for Africa,” said Cowie. “She will undoubtedly be an asset to us in the Northeast, and the advisors in the region can look forward to the continued five-star service that African Travel is so well known for from our team in the field.”
Rizzolo was most recently director of sales for Caldera House, the luxury boutique hotel in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, where she joined pre-opening. In that multi-faceted role, she managed all sales initiatives and led their reservations team. Partnering closely with their vice president of marketing, she covered all sales territories within North America. In addition to working with the leisure market, Rizzolo’s sales initiatives included representation at consortia industry trade shows, establishing all OTA and Wholesaler partnerships, and deployment of MICE sales action plan.
As a 13-year veteran of the travel industry, Rizzolo’s began her career as a destination specialist for Absolute Travel working closing with travel and direct clients. During her role as luxury travel specialist for Ker & Downey, her support and partnership with the travel advisor community grew, and it’s where she developed a greater knowledge, and passion, for Africa. As regional sales manager for AMAN Resorts she was the lead for the company’s North American portfolio.
Rizzolo’s passion for travel was ignited while traveling the world as an NBA cheerleader. Today she values representing a brand in a genuine way.
“Africa is a destination that is near and dear to my heart,” Rizzolo said. “I’ve been fortunate to have eight trips under my belt, including summiting Kilimanjaro in 2012 which is one of my most memorable travel experiences to date. Joining African Travel, Inc. feels like coming home.”
Based in New York City, Rizzolo resides in Jersey City, New Jersey and well located to connect with the agencies in her territory. She looks forward to immersing herself in a role that allows her to strengthen and grow the relationships she’s formed in the travel trade community, while being focused on a part of the world she feels very much connected to.