There is nothing to certify excellence in film better than a golden statuette of a nude bald man, but for most in Hollywood an oscar nomination is enough of an acknowledgement. Not only will they forever see the words “academy award nominee” preceding their names, but they will also have a great set of consolation prizes to fall back on, regardless of their win.
It is a well-known fact, after all, that each Academy Awards nominee receives a gift bag containing six-figure worth of goods and perks. This year’s giveaways included no less than 59 products and services, ranging from children’s books, cook books, lollipops and $13 eco-chic tote bags, to DNA test kits (!), laser skin treatments, original art, ethically-sourced diamond jewellery, and five-figure worth of holiday trips. This last category includes at the Avaton Luxury Villas Resort Halkidiki, near Mt Athos.
The resort consists of an exclusive collection of 16 villas – most with private pools – overlooking Komitsa Bay, and promising (as far as the website is concerned) to offer the “ultimate” Greek holiday experience. For the ‘hoi polloi’, a room at the resort might cost about $600, but for someone wanting to forget that they lost an oscar to Gary Oldman or Allison Janney, the exclusive $120 square meter suites would be more suitable (no pun intended). And if anyone among the Denzels and Meryls and Sufjans and Saoirses, or anyone of those entitled to the experience of summer in Halkidiki, suffer from a fear of flights, water, heights, or any kind of phobias, then they should look no further than in the same gift back, where another Greek-related experience awaits – a CD and a book about facing your fears from New York’s phobia relief expert, Kalliopi Barlis.