Villas of Distinction® and Dream Vacations Team Up to Gift a $25,000 Holiday Villa Vacation to Deserving Veteran

Wilmington, Mass. (December 30, 2016)Villas of Distinction®, the world’s premier luxury villa rental company and leading home-based travel franchise Dream Vacations, both part of World Travel Holdings, made the holiday season a little brighter for a deserving veteran by gifting him and his family a $25,000 villa vacation.

With the assistance of the Civic Duty Partners, Inc. and New York State Troopers Marine Corps Association, the travel companies found former Marine Thomas McDonnell to host a luxury villa vacation. McDonnell enjoyed complimentary airfare from Dream Vacations and a weeklong villa stay at the beautiful Mumbai in St. Martin courtesy of Villas of Distinction. He was joined by his wife and three children, ages 18 months, four and seven year olds, as well as his parents and grandparents.

“I am so grateful to Villas of Distinction and Dream Vacations for the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to stay at a private villa in St. Martin with my entire family,” said McDonnell. “It was truly an unbelievable experience — from the gorgeous views and private accommodations to the concierge service which made dinner reservations and enabled us to easily explore the island. This was a dream vacation beyond our wildest dreams.”

McDonnell, an infantryman with 3rd Battalion 25th Marines, deployed January-October 2005 to Al Anbar Province, the largest Province by area in Iraq. McDonnell spent the majority of his time located near the west bank of the Euphrates River near the city of Hit (pronounced “HEET”), Iraq, approximately 30 miles northwest of Ramadi.

On Sept. 4, 2005, McDonnell’s base was hit with an organized assault consisting of a truck bomb, small arms, mortars, and rocket propelled grenades. McDonnell, who suffered a severe concussion from the truck bomb, received a Purple Heart, a combat decoration. After returning from Iraq McDonnell pursued a career in law enforcement and is now serving his community as Police Officer in the Rochester, N.Y. area.

“We are thrilled to be able to give Thomas and his family a dream villa vacation,” said Josh Tolkin, Business Development Director for Villas of Distinction. “We’re grateful to those who serve our country and we always remember those who are willing to sacrifice their lives to give us the freedom that we enjoy today. We’re in an amazing industry and it is our pleasure to share what we do with a veteran and his family. This is a gesture of our appreciation, and we are happy that Thomas was able to relax and enjoy quality time with his family this holiday season.”

“When Villas of Distinction called me to see if we wanted to sponsor flights for Thomas’ trip, we jumped at the opportunity,” said Rosemarie Reed, Vice President of Sales & Marketing for Dream Vacations. “As a member of the International Franchise Association’s VetFran and with more than 30 percent of our Franchise Owners being veterans or active duty spouses, we are huge supporters of this community. Having the opportunity to provide a dream vacation to a deserving former Marine during the holidays is truly an honor.”

For further information about the New York State Troopers Marine Corps Association, visit, for Villas of Distinction, or Dream Vacations visit

About Villas of Distinction®

Villas of Distinction®, as part of World Travel Holdings, is a full-service premier luxury villa provider with an extensive portfolio of thousands of privately-owned villas in more than 50 luxurious destinations including the Caribbean, Mexico, Hawaii, Europe, the Continental United States and many private Islands. For nearly 25 years, Villas of Distinction and its team of expert concierges have been helping travelers find their perfect vacation home without a membership fee. The company takes pride in offering customized vacations to meet every imaginable need, with most villas featuring private pools, butlers, maids and chefs.

About Dream Vacations A CruiseOne Company

Launched in 2016, Dream Vacations A CruiseOne Company is part of World Travel Holdings, the world’s largest cruise agency and award-winning leisure travel company. Dream Vacations franchisees have unrivaled buying power to offer the best prices and exclusive offers when selling memorable vacation experiences such as cruises, resort stays and land tours. For more information on Dream Vacations, visit Like Dream Vacations on Facebook at, and follow on Twitter at @Dream_Franchise.

About New York State Troopers Marine Corps Association

The New York State Troopers Marine Corps Association is a non-profit organization. Our motto is “From the Halls of Montezuma to the roads of New York State.” We firmly believe in the old saying “Once a Marine, always a Marine.” The NYST Marine Corps Association’s purpose is to bring together the knowledge and experiences of Marines past and present, young and old and to benefit the Marines and family members during an unforeseen financial crisis. For more information visit the New York State Troopers Marine Corps Association.

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