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When Travel Planning Becomes an Art Form

March 30th 2017
With unparalleled access to the finest experiences imaginable, Quintessentially's award-winning travel service is available to anyone with a wild case of wanderlust. Whatever the occasion, be it a family holiday, a romantic getaway, a solo adventure of a lifetime, travel for business or corporate incentive, our dedicated travel specialists will be on hand to inspire, guide and surprise you.

Stylist magazine recently caught up with our Group Creative Director, Caroline Villamizar Duque, to discuss her 2017 travel calendar...

"I have been known to plan my holidays two years in advance. I mostly book up to a year ahead; the flipside is that a lot of my work travel only has a week or two's notice – some memorable trips have been to Senegal, Belize, Zanzibar and Myanmar. I love to plan (almost as much as the trips themselves). I am an app junkie and and use a number of different apps to research. I keep a list of places to visit in my Wunderlist app so I don't lose track of where I want to go, and spend hours researching remote destinations such as Misool island in Indonesia and the Bijagós islands in west Africa – some of the best fun I've had has been in off-the-beaten-track places. Quite often my holidays are timed around work trips for me or my husband, and my friends also plan group holidays together. I keep running lists of where I've been from previous years so I can 'transport' myself back there at any given time."

Caroline's 2017 travel Calendar

January: Palm Beach, Florida and Colombia

"I started the year in the US with family – most of them live there so I'm there a lot. Then I flew to Cartagena in Colombia to meet my husband and spent 10 days there with a side trip to the jungle and beaches in Tayrona National Park and finished up in Bogotá."

March: Dubai, UAE

"I'm often in Dubai on business but I make sure I stay in nice hotels (this time, I spent five nights at the One & Only Royal Mirage) and usually extend around a weekend so that I have a chance to explore."

Early April: New York, USA

"I'll be there for a week, staying in the Meatpacking District with Quintessentially's creative director."

Mid April: Hvar, Croatia

"I'm happy to revisit certain places – we went to Hvar last year. A friend has opened Hidden House, a small boutique hotel in Stari Grad, and it was so amazing we're going back this Easter."

Early May bank holiday: Nantucket, USA

"I'm staying at Greydon House, a new 20-room boutique hotel. I discovered the place recently and then sense-checked it with a client who spends summers there."

June: Forte dei Marmi, Italy and New York, USA

"We've booked a weekend with friends at their place in Forte dei Marmi in northern Tuscany, plus I have another work trip to New York."

August: East Hamptons, USA

"My mother has a place here so we go once or twice a year. We usually book dinner at The 1770 House well ahead as it gets really busy in summer – that's where I tell friends to stay when they visit."

September: Côte d'Azur, France

"I'm organising an event here and am hoping to stay on for a couple of days – I've got my eye on Orion Tree Houses, an eco-retreat B&B in the hills behind Nice."

October: Monte Argentario, Italy

"My husband and I eloped to Il Pellicano where the jetset used to stay in the Sixties, and try to go back there every year – it doesn't always work but this year we're going back for our anniversary."

November: Kuala Lumpur and Borneo, Malaysia

"At the end of the year I'll be visiting my husband working in Kuala Lumpur and we'll do a side trip to Borneo. It's next on my list to start planning."

December: Mozambique

"I'm hoping to go on a safari in Mozambique over Christmas but it's not booked yet."

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