We have asked Carmen Caballero of Exotik Traveler to share her thoughts with us about her love for travel and hotels, and Amberlair, of course. And before you ask, a #BohoLover is a Boutique Hotel lover … just like us!
How do you choose a hotel when you travel?
It depends a lot where I travel, but personally I look for location (not necessarily centric but a location that offers and experience to the guest too, such as a historic spot or a calm park), efficient service, originality and authenticity. Bathrooms are also very important for me, I like them big and clean looking! I will also check out online reviews to see what visitors have commented.
If you had to choose 3, which were the most special (boutique) hotels you have ever stayed at and what made them so special?
Hotel del Parque in Guayaquil, before cruising the Galapagos Islands, this hotel is number 1 option in the city. This is a one of a kind boutique hotel in Ecuador, located in Parque Historico of Guayaquil, and has been fully renovated. The hotel used to be shelter to the homeless and elderly, now it is a luxury boutique hotel where you can experience the peace of the park where its located and also experience Guayaquil’s culture. Eclectic modern and antique furniture contrasts are present all around the hotel and rooms… Even the most basic room category is quite big with 7 metres high ceilings and the bathrooms are nearly as big as the room!
Another great hotel I have stayed at is Aman Sveti Stefan in the coast of Montenegro.The resort used to be an old fishermans village dating back to the 15th century, and is now a luxury resort. Rooms are equiped with 21st century commodities but also keep the authencity of the old village combining modernity with old historic features. The location, the pink sand private beach, and the hotel features and unique setting make it a very special experience.
The third most special hotel I have ever stayed at is La Mamounia in Marrakech. Located in the heart of the city, it has one of the most unique gardens of Marrakech and also 3 signature restaurants.The decoration is moorish and the colour contrasts are lovely all around the property. The hotel offers to guests a riad experience with a private entrance and also, hotel rooms that do not loose morrocan authencity and where attention to detail is present in every corner of the hotel and room.
If you had your own boutique hotel, what 3 things would you make sure existed?
I’d have a small number of rooms, no a big hotel… Also, try to give the clients a very personalized service and a feeling of “home away from home”, and, I’d place it in an old building / house / palace and remodel it combining old / authentic features with modern ones and id also create a brand for room ammenities with a characteristic smell to associate to the property.
Name 3 things you loved in hotels you stayed in before…
I have loved when the service is positive, educated and efficient, original details in decoration or hotel features/rooms, and, also love to know about the history of the properties.
Name 3 things you wouldn’t want to experience in a hotel ever again.
I think the worst is rude, unpolite/aggressive hotel staff, bathroom showers working properly is also very important for me and brand new hotel soaps…. nothing worst than the appearance of a shower gel or body lotion refilled…
How do you feel about the Amberlair concept?
I really like the project. I think that it is very important that guests have a positive relationship with the brand, this is essential. I am loving the idea to get “boholovers” involved in this project… I think this will help have different points of view for the boutique hotel concept, and also, its starting with a warm touch to this business idea. Id love to stay at the Puglia property before it opens, been to the area before and it is absolutely stunning, but a “boholovers” hotel is still missing :) Cant wait!
Where are you off to next?
My next trip is going to be a road trip along the French Coast, We are flying to Nice, France and we will be visiting unique hotels such as Cap D’Antibes, Chevre D’Or, Cap Estel, Eden Roc, FS Grand Hotel du Cap Ferrat and Five Seas in Cannes…
I am Carmen Caballero, owner and founder of Exotik Traveler: luxury travel blog and also, luxury travel consultant. I studied BS Economics and International Business in St Louis University (Missouri), and then, I decided to follow my dreams and create my own travel company where I design luxury travel journeys all around the world; this was 7 years ago and until today I can say I am proud of what I have achieved, and I happy to have turned my passion into my profession. Most of my life, before deiciding this was going to be my job, I used travel a lot myself, and even my friends and family always reached out to me to help them organize their trips. This was the perfect boost when I started my own business, and word-of-mouth and satisfied clients have taken me to where I stand today. I have to admit I have become social media addicted, I like to share my journeys and also travel inspiration in my social media channels specially in my Instagram account, be sure to follow me also in: Twitter, Facebook and Youtube.