Who are you Solène?
I am of French origin but I have been leaving in Geneva in Switzerland for the last 8 years. I traveled a lot with already more than 45 countries visited and I have a passion for luxury hotels. I was working in finance and today, I work on the organization of travels.
Can you talk about your blog “I love Travelling”?
I am the only author for this blog and only share true experiences there (hotels, restaurants, spas, activities, etc…). The blog is mainly focused on luxury travels as I travel a lot, primary in Europe and Middle-East. I love to discover new places and I became an expert of key destinations. The credibility acquired thanks to all these true experiences allows me to advise people in their travel planning and I really enjoy doing that!
What are your favorite destinations while traveling?
I live to travel to warm places between October and February and to the mountain in February/March. Spring and Summer are more for Europe getaways. My favorite destinations as of today : Oman, Iceland and Australia for the countries; Sydney, Dubai and Paris for the cities. This year, I will spend some time to discover new islands and I would also like to get to South and Central America.
What are your criteria to select a hotel within a destination?
First the location as it is essential. Then the quality and service for price ratio, especially while we are talking about luxury hotels with rates above the 400 € per night. I am not particularly looking for specific services or a brand. But once I am there, I have high expectations around the level of service and small complimentary attentions, but it is hard to know in advance. Select a hotel is not something easy and it is the reason why I assist individuals to choose properties based on their expectations and requirements.
What are the key criteria for you to select a room category in a hotel?
It really depends on the reason for traveling. Sometime, I only select hotels because they are convenient (next to an airport or an event for instance). In this situation, I don’t pay a lot of attention to the room category and as long as I can sleep, I am happy with that.
But usually, I start by checking the quality for price ratio. The view is a key factor if I plan to spend some time in the room or if the destination deserves it. Then I prefer to select a suite in a 4 star hotel than a smaller room in a 5 star hotel for the same price. But the main criteria for a blogger are the free WiFi… and high speed if possible!
What is the best hotel experience you ever had?
It was at the Six Senses Zighy Bay : a really impressive property that I invite you to discover on the blog. It is an eco-chic resort located between sea and mountain in Oman (and 2h from Dubai). No rooms but only villas with swimming pools… so I leave it to you to guess dream holidays you can have there.
What is the hotel where you would dream to stay for a night?
There are so many hotels that it is hard to make a choice. But to select only two, I would say the “Cheval Blanc Randheli” in the Maldives and also the “Alila Jabal Akhdar” in Oman.
What are your favorite hotels?
I am not sure if can really choose as there are so many (lol!). But here are few very good addresses :
- Six Senses Zighy Bay in Oman
- The Chedi in Oman
- Desert Palm in Dubai
- The Spire in New Zealand
And the hotel restaurants, which one did you enjoy?
As for the hotels : there are so many. But I am less of an expert in this area : I enjoy eating but I am not a food critic.
What is the hotel where you had the best sleep and you said to yourself “I want to have this bed at home”?
Generally speaking, we sleep well in luxury hotels 🙂 I have always preferred big pillows on the bed and this has become a must for me in a room… as I never managed to reproduce this at home! But recently, I have been attracted by the Hästens beds that I have discovered at the Nira Montana hotel in Italy. Very comfortable and it came with soft and smooth bed linen. A delight.
What are the unexpected services that you really enjoyed?
Find an after sun product in my bathroom (Four Seasons Jumeirah Beach), have someone spraying Evian water on my face next to the pool when it is warm and cleaning up my sunglasses (Mövenpick Hotel JBR). This is really unexpected! And this is in Dubai…
What is your preferred loyalty program for hotel brands and why?
I think that the Accor loyalty program (Le Club Accor hotel) is very interesting as the points can be exchanged with checks to reduce future hotel bills. Everything is transparent and easy to use as there is no need to think about blackout dates or points required to stay in a hotel. Besides that, I often stay in different hotel chains so I use my airline loyalty card (Miles and More) to earn miles.