Our History

Global Escapes has been in business for more than 30 years. In 1988, Ella Grondahl founded a small travel agency after her daughter went off to college.  She eventually bought out her partners, purchased the historic Athens home that houses the agency, and built what Global Escapes is today, a trusted travel company on the corner of S. Milledge and Springdale.

Tiffany Hines is Ella’s daughter, and after working at Global Escapes all throughout college, she realized that she had a genuine talent and enthusiasm for planning travel. She eventually partnered with her mother, becoming CEO of Global Escapes and a committed participant in the local business community. As an avid island-hopper and a graduate of the University of Georgia, it is Tiffany’s passion to bring professional travel advising to the city of Athens, GA.

Together with a staff of professional travel advisors, Ella and Tiffany have built a business that is proud to service fellow travelers, both in and out of the Athens area.

Global Escapes is a member of the American Society of Travel Advisors (ASTA), International Airlines Travel Agent Network (IATAN), Signature Travel Network, Travel Agency Management Systems (TAMS), the Athens Area Chamber of Commerce, and the Oconee County Chamber of Commerce.

Our Founder:

Ella Grondahl

Specialties: Being Retired

If you were to excavate the brick and mortar that holds our building together, you will definitely find some Ella DNA—in the form of sweat, a little blood, maybe a tear, and definitely a few pulled hairs.

Nobody has put more into Global Escapes than Ella has, and there’s no greater testimony to her experience than the 30+ years behind us. A longtime Athens resident, Ella has sent many of her neighbors on adventures that span the globe, and has recently begun a new journey to the peaceful destination of Retirement.  Ella is no longer taking new clients, but she’s happy to help the rest of us keep her legacy going.

Meet our team >




The world is yours to discover.

Choose a region, and we’ll help get you there.

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