Speaking at World Tourism Forum Istanbul: What is luxury travel?

Since I had the pleasure of speaking at World Tourism Forum in Istanbul a couple of weeks ago, I thought I wanted to share not only the video with you, but also my thoughts on luxury travel in general. What is it? Where is it going? And why did I choose to become a luxury travel blogger? Find the answers below. 

What is luxury travel?

Most people might think that luxury travel is limited to five star hotels, Michelin restaurants and wellness retreats that only celebrities and wealthy people can afford. That’s far from the truth - especially today, where tourism and traveling in general is affected by so many different factors. In my opinion, luxury travel has never been further away from stereotype luxury hotels and resorts. Don’t get me wrong, I’m completely and utterly in love with this business, and to me, luxury hotels are magical places, but I’ll get into depths with that later.

At the conference in Istanbul I didn’t have much time to explain my views in depth, however, I received a question from someone in the audience, who wanted to know if it wasn’t tiring (read: boring) to stick to this specific niche. My answer was obviously no, cause apart from the fact that I really truly love it, the world is changing - and with it, views on luxury and life in general.

Grand hotels and fine dining is still considered to be luxury, but so is mindfulness, peace and serenity. In an ever-changing world, where career and success are considered essentials, we strive for perfection in such a way that we simply need to unwind and take ourselves to a completely different level when we’re spending money and taking time off. A couple of years ago, I wrote an article on the subject; “Why offline is the new luxury” - read it and get an idea of why it’s so important for us to pull the plug once in while.

Luxury is a state of mind - L’Wren Scott

I believe that yoga and meditation retreats are still on the rise; they’re literally the perfect way to combine holiday with self-growth. My conclusion is that (quality) time is more essential to most people today than lavish accommodation and expensive dinners, however, they still make the backbone of the business, which will always evolve around extraordinary experiences (whether they take place internally or externally) and incomparable service.

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Why I choose luxury travel

Luxury travel is reserved for certain times and places. In Greece, for example, I’d be just as happy staying in a small beach hotel than in a lavish luxury resort. Summers in Scandinavia are also ideal if you like to camp, hike and bike, but to me, the grand old lady of tourism is and will always be five star hospitality. The feeling I get when entering a glistening lobby, greeting the professional staff who have been trained in their field - or simply strolling along the corridors of a beautiful hotel, can make my day any day. So to choose this niche when I first started blogging and writing about travels in general, was obvious. My love for the industry was only nourished when I briefly studied Hotel Management in my mid-20’s: there’s so much more to the entire organization of a hotel, restaurant or spa, than guests can see. It’s a certain feeling that I guess my fellow luxury travelers and industry professionals can relate to. And anyone, who has a passion for great service, good manners and excellent quality, really.

The subjects of luxury travel and travel trends in general, obviously occupies a great deal of my time - and hopefully, I’ll do more talks and panel discussions in the future. If you have any questions regarding this, you’re always welcome to contact me.

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