Drum roll please… today’s the day we proclaim the winners of our #smithbday competition (we’ve already contacted the winners personally, but we know you’re all on tenterhooks). Last week, Mr & Mrs Smith celebrated its 10th birthday with a call to all you good people to wish us a happy birthday and tag your best on-the-road snapshots and travel tales, in order that we could reward our 10 favourites with a lovely Smith Get a Room! gift card worth £250.
First of all, a great big fat thank you to everyone who entered: you responded in really quite astonishing numbers, via Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest (among others), and we’ve spent the weekend poring over your gorgeous pictures, basking in the warmth of your lovely messages and stories, and trying to agree which ones are our favourites. We even learnt a bit about you:
You love animals. Your pictures included: two lizards, 32 tropical fish, many seagulls, a jumping pencil urchin, a giant python, one dramatic pigeon, a lot of chickens, a herd of goats, 11 sleepy seals, a few playful elephants, one relaxed tortoise, a not-so-relaxed stingray, nine kangaroos, a Bolivian llama, a nosy flamingo, two tigers (one cub), one hard-to-spot leopard, four camels, one agitated rhino, a handful of orang-utans, half a dozen horses, and two donkeys.
You love a theme. Popular image types included: jumping (on beaches, mostly); drinks (mostly champagne, mostly with a view); feet (with view); things reflected in things; views through things.
You’re a romantic bunch: there were many, many proposals, anniversaries celebrated, birthdays enjoyed and babies made.
Your favourite destinations were: anywhere in Italy; capital of romance, Paris; and exotic beaches in Bali, Thailand or Mexico. None of you is that fond of New York, apparently (we were shocked by the lack of NY entries at Smith HQ. Shocked, I tell you.)
Props to: the lady who was fondled by a primate; the lady locked out of the Scarlet in a bikini; the lady who did a pregnancy test on her Smith trip; everyone who entered.
Here are our favourites, chosen because we liked them, and because they came from real people, doing real things (please don’t email us with reasons why your photo was better/story more heartwarming/reasons for winning are more compelling – quite possibly they were, but beauty is in the eye of the beholder, there were many opinions involved, and we’re only human). So CONGRATULATIONS to the following 10 #smithbday winners:
THE INSTAGRAMS gmik305 @gmik305 sent us this compelling IG capture of the entrance to Bellevue Syrene hotel on the Amalfi Coast, Italy: it sums up that excitement you feel when you arrive at a new destination. ‘#amazing #bellevueesyrene #sorrento #italia #smithbday’ ____________________________________________________________________________ Holly Kielty @hollykielty charmed us with her lovely image and heartwarming story: ’2 memorable nights spent at the gorgeous Wheatsheaf hotel in the Cotswolds – one as a single lady, the next as a lawfully married wife. Happy memories of great food, lots of champagne and a sympathetic reaction to our hungover selves the next morning…bring on our first anniversary – and a return to the Wheatsheaf! #smithbday’
____________________________________________________________________________ Paula Fleith @paulafleith sums up one of the reasons we do what we do: ‘There’s nothing like waking up in Paradise! #smithbday’
____________________________________________________________________________ Tash Storer @discotash‘s quirky cocktail directions at the QT Port Douglas hotel caught our eye: ‘My kind of hotel signage #qtresort #qtresortportdouglas #cocktails #smithbday’ ____________________________________________________________________________ Justina Ding @jding Now this is what you call a bird’s eye view: ‘Best #beach in the world #whitehaven #whitsundays #hamiltonisland#mtghdr #mytravelgram #smithbday‘ ____________________________________________________________________________
Hugo McMullen @HugoMcMullen gave Smith HQ a smile with this Moroccan camel ride: ‘Thank you Mr & Mrs Smith and happy 10th Anniversary. Picture taken in Essaouira (Heure Bleue Hotel) #smithbday’
Sophie Rock @SophieRock’s double-Welly shot is sweet and celebrates the best of Britain (where you can still have fun in the rain): ‘We still can’t stop talking about our amazing mini-moon @The_Pig_Hotel a year ago! Just perfect #smithbday‘ ____________________________________________________________________________
Corinna Mooring @ukcorinna captured an iconic hotel silhouette against an amazing sunset: ‘Happy 10th Birthday #smithbday Loved @AlilaUluwatu; Loved the free massage from @smithhotels‘
THE FACEBOOK POSTS
Zoe Francis made a little effort with her dazzling beach skyline shot: ‘Happy Birthday Mr & Mrs Smith, whose VIP luxury is definitely not a myth, a gift from our holiday in Dubai, on the One&Only Palm Beach with breathtaking blue sky #smithbday Mr & Mrs Smith One&Only Resorts‘
Sacha Emily Ciolino One of the most romantic hotel views in the world? We think so too: ‘The most magical view from Villa Arcadio in Lake Garda where my new husband and I stayed on our honeymoon in September! #smithbday‘ ____________________________________________________________________________
Thanks again to everyone who entered – and do have a look at some of the other fantastic #smithbday entries!