We sat down with Miranda Cresswell, our Director of Brand Marketing (and an experienced traveller herself), to talk about gift inspiration and home comforts when you’re away from home.
I’ve been travelling with work for nearly 19 years and collected all the tips and advice I can get my hands on. So I’ve got the flight routine down at this point: pack your own snacks, drink more water than you can bear, wear ear buds to kill the engine noise – which, after dehydration, is the most exhausting aspect of a plane journey. And never ever go to the bathroom in your socks. Once that’s sorted, it’s what you do in your first 12 hours that makes the difference to your trip. With the holidays approaching, here are my perfect gifts for fellow travellers (or even a treat to get you through that next long-haul flight).
‘Look good, feel great’ is my travel mantra. Get your frequent traveller a facial on arrival and they will thank you forever. I love Alexandra Wagner in Venice, LA. In New York I head straight for Silk Day Spa in the West Village. In London I’m a new convert to the under-the-radar wonders of Linda Meredith in Knightsbridge. Backup? The original and best, SKII face masks, easy to pack in individual sachets, I’ll even wear these on overnight flights. Or just help her fake a well-rested look with a killer red lipstick. Nars Heat Wave works on everybody.
Headphones – not a new idea, but a classic. And Master & Dynamic, led by a father and son team, make supremely giftable and gorgeous “modern thinking caps”. I love the MH40 over-ear ones, and while the price is high, they’re built to last years. Give your traveller a (free) subscription to the best podcasts out there – Gimlet Media, launched by a former producer of my all-time favourite show This American Life, has a number of great great shows. These guys keep me company (and feeling at home) in cities around the world.
Totally not glamorous, and totally addictive. Glerrups from Denmark. My sister gave me a pair years ago and I travel everywhere with them – and this year, all things ‘hygge’ are huge, making these slippers a very timely treat. I take mine in my hand luggage, even though they aren’t small by any means – I wear them in-flight because planes are freezing, and dirty. Hotels can be unpredictable on the slipper front, and with more of us choosing to stay in private homes when travelling, slippers are a fantastic way to feel at home quickly.
The quietly gorgeous Albemarle bucket bag from classic British brand Smythson, will be my travel gift to myself this year. The low-key, modest branding is very chic, and it is full of practical features for city jaunts – like the slim exterior pocket for travel cards, and the magnetic closure for extra security.