One of life’s hardest lessons is realizing just how precious time is. While there is nothing anyone can do about the way time flies, Robin Norell, founder of Millbrook World Travel, is doing something about how our precious time is spent. Fueled by the memories spent with her family and the values instilled in her by her late father, Norell puts the most important aspect a Travel Professional can put into other families' travel plans—care.
Norell attributes more than just the name of her company to her father, Joe, who started a kitchen and cabinetry business, Millbrook Custom Kitchens, in the late 1950s. Joe’s love for his family and travel sparked passion in his daughter. While teaching his daughter about what it takes to run a business, he also taught her about the importance of family time, spending quality time with loved ones, and the joy of traveling. Norell gives her father credit for giving her the “travel bug” which has shaped her personal and professional life.
Norell worked as a travel professional since 2013, and in June 2019, decided to take the lessons learned from Joe about business and open her own travel agency, Millbrook World Travel. “When I create family vacation plans for my clients, it is with the memories of my own family in mind,” says Norell. Norell has made countless memories, visiting 40 countries, and 33 states, and going on 44 cruises to date.
Many people think of travel agencies as a thing of the past, but travel professionals are a necessity for travelers today and for good reason. There is an ever-increasing demand for travel services. Travel professionals have extensive experience, knowledge, and industry connections. Travel professionals, like Norell, make travel expertise their life’s work. They use their knowledge and connections to help other families get the most out of their vacations, and the best part—there is no cost to their clients to use their services.
Travel professionals like Norell are paid by their suppliers, not their clients. Many times, they have access to special pricing and insider offers. Using Millbrook World Travel is like having a friend in the industry. “More and more people have learned doing it yourself isn't always the best way to do it,” says Norell about booking vacations.
“I love helping people—that is what truly makes me happy. And if I can help others have even a fraction of the wonderful memories and experiences I have from traveling with family and friends, I will know I’ve made a difference,” Norell explains about her love of what she does.
As Norell strives to make a difference in her client's lives, she also makes a difference in the numerous ways she gives back to the community. Norell and her agency support Family Housing Network, whose mission is to end family homelessness in Larimer County. Norell also works with the program through her church where she is on the coordination team, which hosts families for four weeks a year.
In her neighborhood and her church, Norell has created travel clubs, where she uses her expertise to help others plan their dream vacations and getaways. Traveling with members of her clubs has helped her professionally because, “the travel industry is always changing, and you have to keep traveling and learning to stay on top of the changes,” Norell explains.
The travel industry has no doubt changed in the last few years. As the travel industry came to a complete standstill in 2020, Millbrook World Travel did the same. Norell weathered the storm, knowing travel would eventually come back. She was back traveling as soon as the world reopened, so she could share what it was like to travel within the new normal.
“I think we all have a better understanding of the fact that tomorrow is not guaranteed, for us all to stop dreaming and start traveling,” Norell says of the effect the pandemic had on her business.
With a deep love of travel and helping others, Norell and Millbrook World Travel assist families all over Northern Colorado to make priceless memories as they experience the world together. The care her agency takes in making each family vacation a trip of a lifetime is what sets them apart. Joe would no doubt be proud of how his daughter has taken his lessons and memories and used them to bring joy and unforgettable experiences to so many families.