The final winner, Ed Starowicz --the Deputy Commissioner of Pittsford, New York and long time fan of French Polynesia – saw one of the ads about the contest on the side of his Facebook page and decided to play. Answers from nearly 2,000 players were reviewed and the final winner needed to answer each question correctly and submit the answers using the same Email address. In the end, only 350 players were eligible and Starowicz’s name was chosen by a random generator.
“My wife and I had stopped by Tahiti on a cruise nearly 30 years ago before we had children and our dream was always to go back,” he explains. “We finally did last year for our anniversary and saw how well the destination had matured so we figured why not try and make our dreams come true one more time. It’s just amazing that we won!”
Starowicz said the game was fun and didn’t take him long to play – some answers he knew right away and some he would research for a few minutes online. The game consisted of ten questions about the destination, the hotel and the national airline, posted twice a week for five weeks on the Hilton Moorea, Air Tahiti Nui, Tahiti Tourisme North America and Hilton Facebook Fan Pages.
When asked his favorite thing about the destination he said the incredibly blue and crystal clear water. He said everyone is surprised that the country is only an 8 hour flight from Los Angeles and even though they started out in New York and connected in L.A., the minute they stepped off the plane into that tropical paradise, they started to relax and wind down. “I didn’t even take my cell phone last time I was there. The people are so gracious and elegant, it just calms you down. And then walking out into the lagoon is like walking into an aquarium and being surrounded by beautiful, tropical fish.”
In addition to the grand prize, the runner up won a beautiful Tahitian black pearl and there were also weekly winners who were awarded prizes ranging from a DVD of unity Universal Pictures Couple’s Retreat (filmed in Tahiti) to special Tahitian gifts like vanilla beans, manoi oil, pareos (beach wraps).
ABOUT THE HILTON MOOREA
Recipient of a 2010 Certificate of Excellence by Trip Advisor, the Hilton Moorea Lagoon Resort & Spa has long been a favorite of discerning world travelers. The 10-year-old Hilton Moorea teems with Polynesian “mana,” or spirit, and unfolds between a 10-acre aquamarine lagoon and velvet green mountains on the heart-shaped island that is just a 30 minute ferry ride from French Polynesia’s capital city of Papeete.
The resort’s $11 million renovation was completed last May with interiors of each of the 104 signature thatched roofed bungalow accommodations – whether overwater, beachfront or in the garden -- re-imagined in a contemporary island motif. The soothing new color palette uses tropical earth tones that accent a blending of wood, glass, marble, silk and woven materials. Bathrooms feature sleek Italian granite countertops;
The Hilton Flag flies over another award-winning resort in French Polynesia, the Bora Bora Nui Resort & Spa on the island of Bora Bora, a 40-minute flight from Moorea. For the latest packages and specials at both hotels visit: www.hilton.com/
ABOUT AIR TAHITI NUI
Air Tahiti Nui, with a route network linking the South Pacific to four continents, is the leading carrier to French Polynesia featuring daily non-stop service from Los Angeles. Air Tahiti Nui was named the “Best Airline – Pacific Region” and recognized as having the “Best Cabin Staff – Pacific Region” in the 2008 Skytrax World Airline Survey® for the sixth consecutive year; it was also named one of the “World’s Best” international airlines by Travel +Leisure in 2008. The airline has headquarters in Papeete and operates from Faa’a International Airport on the island of Tahiti. The company was founded in 1996 and commenced flight operations in 1998.
The web site www.airtahitinui-