Where PwC's Cullinan and Ruiz Can Go to Forget Oscars Night

After the debacle: Adele Romanski, Berry Jenkins, and Jeremy Kleiner accept the Oscar for Best motion picture of the year, fo
After the debacle: Adele Romanski, Berry Jenkins, and Jeremy Kleiner accept the Oscar for Best motion picture of the year, for work on “Moonlight”

Brian Cullinan and Martha Ruiz may well be taking an extended vacation after the Oscars fiasco. If you have been a hermit for the past month and don’t know who this couple are, you must have been on a trip to outer space.

The main talking points from the Oscars are usually the dresses, the jewellery, the facial reactions of the losers or what the host said.

What happened at the 89th Academy Awards on February 26th is that these two accountants became the story.

Cullinan and Ruiz work for PwC, the company that has handled the awards voting for an impressive 83 years The one job they had on the night was to make sure that the presenters were handed the famous golden envelopes with the right names in and the winners got their coveted Oscars. They messed up.

Those who watched on the night will know that presenter Warren Beatty announced the winner of the Best Picture as La La Land. The Emma Stone and Ryan Gosling musical won many awards that evening but best picture was not one of them. The winner was actually gritty Amercian coming-of-age drama Moonlight. Somehow, the wrong winner had been announced.

Sebastian (Ryan Gosling) and Mia (Emma Stone) in LA LA LAND
Sebastian (Ryan Gosling) and Mia (Emma Stone) in LA LA LAND

The award eventually went to the right movie but it soon became clear that the problem was caused by PwC’s agents on the ground. Their reputation as auditors to the Oscars was trashed, despite the company apparently having many processes in place to stop just a mix-up happening. These included Cullinan and Ruiz, who were backstage, being given duplicate sets of envelopes and also having memorized the list of winners. It shouldn;t have happened but it did.

PwC issued a statement after the ceremony saying, “We sincerely apologise to Moonlight, La La Land, Warren Beatty, Faye Dunaway, and Oscar viewers for the error that was made during the award announcement for best picture.”

The president of the Academy, Cheryl Boone Isaacs, has subsequently said that neither Cullinan nor Ruiz would be renewing their Oscars’ roles next year. As a result, the pair may be looking to keep a low profile so I thought it muight be a good idea to think about where they could keep theirs heads down.

According to his Twitter profile, PwC’s Cullinan is an avid skier and recently spent some time in Mammoth in California, as can be seen from his tweet below. Interestingly, his Twitter account has been pretty quiet since Oscars night.

Cullinan may be looking for something more low profile for his next trip so how about a ski trip to one of Europe’s hidden gems with Peak Retreats?

The company specialises in lesser known resorts that still have amazing skiing. For example, the company has luxury accommodation in the resorts of Samoens and Les Carroz, part of the 265km Grand Massif/Flaine ski domain, both very close to the lifts, meaning he is less likely to get spotted.

If he really wants to avoid the crowds he could also try the resort of Les Deux Alpes...in the summer. This high resort offers glacier skiing so you can enjoy the slopes even on the sunniest of days.

I recently learned that those pesky Oscars envelopes are actually made in a small town in the Bavarian Alps. In his post on February 23rd, travel blogger Michael Turtle said, “I don’t think people will take much notice of the envelopes or the cards when they watch the ceremony this year.” How wrong he was.

Perhaps a trip for the PwC pair to the factory might be in order. Featherdown Farms, famous for its farm-based glamping holidays, now offers similar experiences across Europe, incluing in the lakes and mountains of Bavaria. A good place for them to get their heads down and perhaps go and see how those envelopes were made.

Ruiz recently spent a family vacation in Hawaii with her parents and siblings. She told women’s career networking platform The Glass Hammer that it was a “calm, relaxed setting that allowed us all to catch up and for the kids to spend quality time with their grandparents.”

If Ruiz would like to recreate her Hawaii holiday, she could try island-hopping to explore some of Hawaii’s lesser known secrets.

Cullinan likes his bikes and rides a Harley. How about taking some time on a road trip on his Harley in the Great Lakes? Apart from being in the great outdoors, the tour takes in Milwaukee, home to the Harley Davidson museum. If the Lakes don’t appeal, North America Travel Service operates self-guided Harley tours in 25 states.

The pair might also like to visit Florida, the setting for Moonlight to get away from LA, where the action in La La Land takes place.

Scott Dunn offers range of ideas for Florida, including airboat rides through the Everglades, snorkelling from Islamorada and off the beaten track islands.

One of the remotest places on the planet, Easter Island
One of the remotest places on the planet, Easter Island

Talking about remoteness, there can be fewer remote places than Easter Island. Journey Latin America offers trips to this remote outcrop in the Pacific, famous for its mysterious statues – the perfect destination for getting away from it all and contemplating the future, whatever that may be for the pair.

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