The AHH Moment

It is May! Where have the last 6 weeks gone! May is the month we honor our Moms. Here’s to all mothers, godmothers, friends of mothers. Celebrating moms is more important than ever.
It has been quite a ride these last weeks. As a mom you likely have been faced with experiences even you weren’t expecting. How many hats do you wear? There are the moms of young children who are juggling the roles of chef, housekeeper, professional, entrepreneur, employee, teacher, finance administrator, commander-in-chief to say the least. All simultaneously.
Then there are the moms whose kids are grown and are separated from them due to travel bans and social-distancing orders.
These past weeks have been an intense time and I am sure you are ready for a break. Hopefully, that will happen sooner than later. A time to recharge, a time for YOU! Gentlemen (oh your day will come next month!), what better way to treat your wife, mother of your children, grandchildren and caretakers, than to plan a retreat for this amazing woman!
Though travel is yet not accessible once we are able to start moving freely again, wellness retreats will be there with open arms. Enjoy the chance to be yourself, to breathe and rejuvenate.

Wellness Escapes

Renew and Recharge at Resorts

Practice mindful living in Miami. Find enchantment in California’s woodland ranch. Sip pineapple coconut smoothies at Mexico’s famous destination spa.
Located on Miami Beach, the Carillon Wellness Resort is “where innovative wellness and balanced indulgence come together in one beachfront setting”.
Carillon Miami Wellness Resort now offers 3-day luxury wellness retreats coming this May – November guided by experts in nutrition, integrative medicine, personal development and everything in between to support you in your path to optimal health.
Carillon Miami Wellness Resort
With locations in Woodside, CA, Lenox, MA, Tucson, AZ, and Las Vegas, NV, Canyon Ranch is an integrative wellness center that has retreats focused around the full rebirth of the mind, body, spirit, and soul.
The holistic wellness methods aim to upgrade your downtime with a curated experience toward self-care.
Rancho La Puerta
Whether you are having a girls trip, mother-daughter time, or need a personal day getaway, Rancho La Puerta is a there to help inspire planetary well-being and the pursuit of health for all of its guests.
Extend your Mother’s Day and celebrate summer and wellness at Mexico’s famous destination spa.

Slow Down on a Cruise

Enjoy holistic encounters on Caribbean voyages on the luxury yacht line SeaDream Yacht Club. All guest have an ocean view stateroom accompanied by al fresco dinning. Aboard the yacht, enjoy free fitness classes and plant-based menus tailored to any dietary needs.
It’s one of autumn’s greatest pleasures: seeing the gorgeous fall foliage along the Atlantic northwest coast. Seabourn, the ultra-luxury cruise line known for its Spa and Wellness welcomes you to bliss out with daily yoga and meditation on a New England and Canadian Voyage.

Until You Can Get Away

Recreate the perfect wellness retreat right in your home. With these small tips shared by experts at hotels and spas around the world, you’ll be relaxing in no time.
  1. Make your room into a sanctuary. Filling your space things that put you at ease. Whether it is having plants line the walls or perhaps having your aromatherapy diffuser running in the background, creating a calming space where you spend the most time, is very important.
  2. Start your favorite mediation practice. Classes in yoga and guided mindfulness meditation are appearing everywhere online. Programs led by Six SensesMii Amo Spa, and Aman have started having their classes on Facebook and Instagram, free for anyone to join.
  3. Arrange at-home spa treatments. D.I.Y. is now the new craze nowadays. With D.I.Y body scrubs and face masks at-home tutorial videos filling the internet, it is quite easy to give yourself the pampering you deserve with products you probably already have in your cupboard.

Let the Kids Have Fun Too

You have been tasked with home educating your kids – that is no small task. When you have a chance to have some me-time, let the kids travel and learn about the world’s landmarks.
Take a break from the screens and a give them a coloring book filled with crossword puzzles and word searches that can be both fun and challenging.

Coming Soon!

Wake up your senses and relax your mind and body in one of the world’s premier oceanfront spas—in the Palm Beach luxury wellness resort and residences called Amrit.
Set to open its doors in October, Amrit will establish the Five Pillars of Wellness (mindfulness, nutrition, fitness, relaxation and sleep) from the moment you walk through the doors.
Featured Recipes of the Week
Voted the #1 destination spa in the US, Mii Amo Wellness Spa Resort is focused on physical well-being and providing you with the most nutritious recipes.
Enjoy a taste of Sedona, AZ from your home with an exclusive collection of recipes, here.

Need to Know

With states slowly opening up again, passenger safely is at the forefront of the airlines mind as travel starts to pick up.
JetBlue announced earlier this week masks will be minatory for all passengers while boarding, flying, and deplaning. American Airlines said they too will have employees give out masks and hand sanitizer to passengers, as long as they can maintain supplies. Other airlines, including Delta and United, stated they will be blocking off middle seats to encourage social distancing.
Until May 31, airlines have been asked to limit the number of passengers on each aircraft to ensure everyone will maintain ample distance from one another. Airlines like American Airlines will not assign 50% of the main cabin middles seats or seats near flight attendants to create more space. We shall see how this goes.
Always remember to keep in the know about the latest facts on COVID-19:
I hope you enjoy our updates and welcome your thoughts. We are here for you and will keep you updated and posted. We all look forward to the time when we can discover again our wonderful world.
Happy Mother’s Day!
We make it personal.
We specialize in you!

Stay Home but Stay Inspired

When “shelter in place” restrictions begin to lift, the desire to move about after so many weeks of confinement will quickly follow.
Many of us long for the time when we can be back in nature again. National parks offer a chance for us to decompress and get back to our roots – reconnecting with the land.
Until that time, some of the world’s most beautiful places can also be seen in our own backyard. As this past Wednesday was Earth Day, l thought to concentrate this week’s newsletter on some of the amazing National Parks we are so fortunate to have. I know you will want to get out and explore Nature at its grandest……
We are still staying home, however, let’s stay inspired. Happy Earth Day! America the beautiful!

Armchair Travel with Backroads

Did You Know?

Yellowstone National Park is the world’s oldest national park, having been created by Congress in 1872 when Ulysses S. Grant was president. It covers 2,221,773 acres in Idaho, Montana and Wyoming with national forests surrounding its borders.

UNESCO World Heritage

Among the 63 national parks in the United States, 13 are also World Heritage sites. A few—Grand Canyon, Yellowstone, Yosemite—have the spectacular landscapes, unique biodiversity, and cultural significance to make them clear contenders for the double crown, while others are less obvious choices such as Everglades National Park.

What does it take to be a World Heritage site? According to UNESCO, there are 10 criteria for natural and cultural sites – a site must meet at least one of the criteria. Qualifications range from “a masterpiece of human creative genius” and “exceptional natural beauty”. Read on to discover the baker’s dozen of these elite parks and a few of the reasons they gained their UNESCO distinction on the National Parks Service website.

“Guard it well, for it is far more precious than money…once destroyed, nature’s beauty cannot be repurchased at any price.” – ANSEL ADAMS

National Parks for Kids

With over 400 national parks spread across America, the National Park Foundation is encouraging the young and old to connect with the land around us. In a time where going to parks seems like a distant memory, appreciating these incredible spaces is now more important than ever.

America’s best classroom – the National Park Foundation has created a guide to help teach the younger generation about these one of kind locations from home.

Take a glimpse at the guide and start your adventure from home.


Park Ranger Recipes

A park ranger for almost 20 years, Park Ranger John has created a personal blog dedicated to providing National Park travel tips and recipes.

What’s for Dessert?

Recipe of the Week: Blueberry Pie

Famous to Bar Harbor, Maine near Acadia National Park, blueberry pie is always a nice treat after a camping trip. A mouth-watering homemade delicious blueberry pie will warm your heart from the first bite.

Happy Hour

Drink of the Week: IPA Moscow Mule Cocktail

One of Park Ranger John’s favorite camping cocktails. However, you don’t have to be camping to enjoy this killer cocktail, it’s a lovely poolside drink.
  • 1 1/2 oz Reyka Vodka
  • 2 oz Ginger Beer
  • 2 oz Bell’s Hopslam IPA
  • 3/4 oz Lime Juice
  • Lime Wheel Garnish and sprig of fresh mint
  • Ice
Even in the midst of a pandemic, we still believe that travel makes life richer, no matter where you are.

While We Are Safe At Home

While the spring holidays come in full swing, many of us are left to turn to Zoom or Facetime in order to still virtually celebrate with our loved ones. Besides the invasion of the COVID-19 virus, we are being challenged by another unknown toxin – isolation.
As both a travel professional and a traveler myself, I have spent many holidays away from family and loved ones, but never to this extent. I too will be joining you in this new experience of social distancing ourselves during a time when all we want to do is be with one another.
With the COVID-19 restrictions taking their toll on our communities globally, as a valued client, I offer you ways to help ease into this new normal during the holidays.

Dream of the Days to Come

Even if your body has to stay home right now, you’re imagination doesn’t!

I am doing my best to provide my community of past, present & future clients with inspiration so you can continue to dream about your future journeys.
Do some research, watch some videos, read some travel books about your next dream destination. One of the perfect ways to incorporate travel while still safe at home is through cuisine.
VLIFE News, a digital initiative highlighting news about Portugal, has published a number of Portuguese Easter dishes. Check them out below:

Portuguese Easter Cake

As many of you know, my family is Italian. Along with the staple lamb dish, I will be making a Colomba Pasquale. This bread is known to symbolize peace, which is something we could definitely use during these times! The recipe is below, along with the Greek counterpart Spanakopita.

Spanakopita (Greek Spinach Pie)

Colomba Pasquale (Easter Dove Bread)

Staying close with your family…

…via video chat or Zoom-type calls!
These days, the average family is spread out all across the country. Being present and together virtually is essential right now.
Coordinate a video call with far-reaching family members so that no one feels isolated. Family is the most important community that we all have yet it is easy to take for granted. Don’t!

Keep those family traditions alive and create new memories that you will talk about in years to come. Perhaps now is a better time than any to brainstorm all together where your next family vacation will be.

Upcoming Events
In the comforts of your own home, you can travel the world with these live stream events that are happening later this week!

Let us remember our medical community and service workers and the sacrifices they are making to help us through this disruption. Without them, I fear out current situation would be much worse.
I hope that this has given you a head start on developing your own antibodies to the isolation and separation toxins that social distancing has thrust upon us. Soon we will be back to “normal” and I’m hoping that it will be an even better “normal” than before –  where we have more appreciation for each other and our incredible freedoms to see the world.
I’d love to hear how you are keeping your travel dream alive in your own home and your community.
We make it personal.


Stay safe! Be well!

April Showers??

Well we certainly have seen March come in like a lion which brings April Showers so it is said. SHOWERS?? More like a Tsunami!
I prefer to call this crisis a Disruption. It has certainly disrupted every aspect of our lives.

As both a travel professional and a traveler myself, I view the World as my community.

As one of my valued clients, you may feel the same, certainly there are questions and concerns. We are all facing a temporary “new normal” right now.

When To Put Your Travels On Hold

I’m here for you.

What is important right now is to recognize what you can and can’t control. Let the “Cant’s” go! And focus on the “Cans”.

When tragedy strikes, we have two choices.
We can choose to be swept up in the negative emotions
We can choose to fill our lives with feelings of hope, love, and generosity.

This all starts by you making the choice to let go of those things you can’t control and grabbing hold of those things you can.

For continued up-to-date information:


And from me to you…

We can’t control what is going on in the world. We have no say on the travel restrictions being put in place, but what I can do is provide you with inspiration so that you keep your travel dreams alive.

The time will come when you will take that trip that you have been wanting to take, and I promise to be here ready & waiting to help you make it happen!

While you are safe indoors, many of you with young children, a great tool for learning is a program by National Geographic. Little Passports I have given this to a number of nieces and nephews and can highly recommend.

Family, friends, and thoughts of future travel mean everything to us. , and Virtuoso Traveler’s new issue offers so much to look forward to. Right now, though, bust out your markers and put those coloring skills to work. Download a printable version of the cover for the kids – or for you. We could all use a little stress relief right now.

Download the cover:
Read the full issue:
Let us remember our medical community and service workers and the work they are doing to help us through this disruption.

With their help we can get back to traveling with a spirit of curiosity, supporting our global neighbors. We will get through this storm together. Storms bring rainbows. Once these April showers are over, we look forward to beautiful May flowers – and on the other side of the rainbow……The world is vast and wonderous. We will continue to provide updates and news delivered directly to you. Feel free to connect with your comments, concerns and feedback.

No matter what, your safety and comfort level will always be my utmost priority.

We make it personal.

Should I Stay or Should I Go

While I have been updating to re-launch our website and setting up a monthly newsletter on destinations, travel experiences, travel tips, I did not anticipate that our first newsletter would be about not traveling!
“Stay home and hunker down” are not words that I, as a travel professional AND world traveler myself, ever thought I would give as advice. However, with the current COVID-19 situation and the need to be responsible, I understand that we all must socially distance ourselves and our family right now to help reduce the impact of this nasty new virus.
Breathe. Don’t panic.
Leave some toilet paper rolls on the grocery shelf for the next guy. Be kind and wash your hands for 20 seconds. We will get through this. 
Do Not Travel Right Now.
The State Department has announced a Level 4 advisory globally.
This cannot be ignored. We need to do everything possible to help stop the spreading. Now is the time to be kind to family, friends and neighbors and be thankful for what we do have, each other.
For up-to-date information on traveling during the COVID-19 outbreak, visit the following websites:
Also note that while we hear of the many more incidents and deaths, I feel it is also important to note the number of recoveries – to put things in perspective (if that is possible). A good source is Worldometer.
Other breaking news:
 Getting out doors: not cancelled
 Music: not canceled
 Family: not canceled
 Reading: not canceled
 Singing: not canceled
 Laughing: not canceled
 Hope: not canceled
Let’s celebrate what we have………..
Travel by Design, Inc. is working to ensure we are doing the best for our clients, hopefully with postponing travel, but also canceling if necessary. We are here for you now, and we will be here for you on the other side of this. Bear with us if some of this takes time. We have a few shortcuts up our sleeves, but there are still extremely long wait times in getting results for you.
While I am willingly advising clients to NOT travel under the current circumstances, I feel very strongly that we will all get through this together and the world will once again open its arms to receive curious visitors. So, while we may not be actively traveling, it is vitally important to keep on DREAMING about your next vacation or adventure.
What better way to spend a couple of hours with your family than watching together, dreaming together and getting inspiration for your next trip? I thought it might be a help to recommend some of the best travel films.
So, pop some popcorn and cozy up on the couch together and start dreaming! This social distancing thing is looking better already!
When the world calms down and you are ready to turn your new travel dreams into reality, I am here to make it effortless for you…we make it personal.
“Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away”…
Be well, stay safe!
Yours in travel,


At The Movies – 50 Best Travel Films

At the Movies!

Well, goodness! How to review the movie list if it is not there! It seems that the link to the 50 Movies was not working!

Here you go! Enjoy those that appeal to you and to the destinations you love or would love to explore!

Lights, Camera, Action!



Have a beautiful day!

Yours in travel,


“Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away”…

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