Looking for a lesson in stylish sojourning? You’re in luck. Whether you’ve lapped up a last minute long weekend or booked a big break on the beach, we’ve quizzed some of the best qualified in the travel business to bring you a ruddy good guide on how to get the most from your holiday.
First up? Our friends at boutique travel experts Mr & Mrs Smith – home to some of the sleekest stays on the sphere.
Editor-in-chief Juliet Kinsman is the original voice behind the boutique hotel guide and, instinctive about what makes a stay Smithy, her travel and interiors articles appear in publications such as Conde Nast Traveler to the Financial Times.
The daughter of a career diplomat, she’s had a taste for travel since childhood stints in Africa and America; her heart belongs to NYC and her London home, Kensal Green, which celebrate on her blog Park-Life.org.
She’s a self-confessed connoisseur of coffee, cheap-chic cottages and compound adjectives – a girl after our own heart – and, by her own admission, if she had a penny for every Smith hotel she’d written she’d have enough to buy her own hip hideaway.
Need we find a better brain to pick? We caught up with Juliet to find out her top tips for travelling in style this summer…
Barely a day goes by where I don’t use Skyscanner for figuring out who flies where, how long it takes and what flights are available at what price.
2. How to pack
Less really is more. Especially if you’re flying: pack either everything or a few essentials into carry-on hand baggage. A key for me to minimising wardrobe and maximising glam is dresses: it sidesteps the ‘which top with what bottoms?’ worry of separates – particularly irksome if you end up in a hotel room with no decent full-length mirror.
(Douse tissues in your favourite fragrance and layer them in your packing – everything smells so fresh, you don’t mind giving a dress an extra wear if need be.)
Tallulah & Hope does fabulous luxury kaftans (pictured above) you’d feel as comfortable wearing on a beach as at a special occasion: dress them up with heels and statement jewellery. Travel Wardrobe Care makes great suitcase accessories that keep clothes organised and crease-free. If you have carry-on it makes finding things easier: keep electrical goods, lingerie and hair paraphernalia all in separate compartments. And it helps avoid airing your dirty laundry in public if you get stopped and searched!
I love Stereomood for music in a hotel or villa via my laptop and WiFi. They curate great playlists which blend under-the-radar new tracks with great classics suited to every setting; my favourites are Roadtrip, Sunday Morning and New York.
4. All-climate ready
Make it easier to adapt to a temperature change at the other end and feel your best in transit with a kitten-soft cashmere Travelwrap. It saves lugging a woollen coat to a beachside hotel just because the weather at home is cold, plus it saves you from those dreaded on-board lunges from freezing to sweltering. At £229, it’s an investment piece but it almost gets better with each wash! (And now they help me keep travel documents safe in style thanks to their leather accessories range: I love the lime-coloured Companion, £94.)
Our new Mr & Mrs Smith app is as fun as it is practical – and free! It guarantees you plan the perfect trip (find your dream hotel for your date/budget/destination) and helps you set your mood with music, play cheeky games of Truth or Dare, and it even provides get-out-of-work excuses in ready-to-use email form.