Today, Norm Goldman, Editor of Sketchandtravel and Bookpleasures welcomes as a guest, Francisca Matteoli.
Francisca has written several books pertaining to hotels around the world:
*Hotel Stories: Legendary Hideaways Of The World:
*Adventure Guide Hotel Stories:
*Island Hotel Stories:
After living in Brazil, Francisca now makes her home in Paris. In addition to her books, she has also contributed articles to National Geographic France, Condé Nast Traveller, Air France Hommes and The Tribune of San Luis Obispo.
Bonjour Francisca and thank you for agreeing to participate in our interview.
Bonjour à vous, Norm ! C’est un plaisir.
Francisca, could you tell us a little about yourself, and when did you passion for travel begin? What keeps you going?
I suppose it all started when I left Chile for France on board Le Pasteur. I was very young but I remember it well. It was quite an adventure ! Such an adventure in fact, that I start my last book Adventure Hotel Stories with this incredible story. Besides, my mother who is Scottish, and my father, who is Chilean, used to travel a lot and tell me fabulous stories. I always wanted to travel like them.
Why did you choose to write about hotels?
As my life in France began at the Hotel du Louvre in Paris, in front of the Comedie Francaise, it was natural for me to write about hotels. It was my destiny !
Could you recommend to our readers six of the most romantic and unique hotels in the world, and why do you consider them to be so unique and romantic?
**The Soneva Fushi Resort in the Maldives. For the sun, the white beaches, the fabulous food and divine sunsets.
**Le Hameau Albert 1er in Chamonix-France. Part of the famous Relais & Château chain. It’s lovely to spend the day outside, walking or skiing, and to enjoy finally a warm wood fire and a good glass of wine. And here, the wine and everything else is perfect ! They have 20 000 bottles in their cellar !
**The Dorchester-London. A must in London. British style and elegance all the way.
**The Mission Ranch, Carmel. I love the cosy atmosphere, the soup of the day !, the unpretentious style and the charming town of Carmel. It’s reminds me of Chile.
**Hotel Janelas Verdes-Lisbon. A literary haunt. A well-kept secret. I felt in love with the place the first time I climbed the stone steps hidden among the plants and flowers.
What does travel mean to you?
Freedom, curiosity, open mind, adaptability and& Everything can happen !
How much time do you travel each year? How do you go about choosing the hotels you wish to write about? What challenges and obstacles have you encountered while covering these hotels?
I travel more or less 4 or 5 months each year, then I write my stories, prepare my books, work on other projects.
I choose places that I really want to see before I die ! It can be in France or in the Amazon. And the Amazon means trouble, believe me- but that’s also part of the fun!
Which country and city have you enjoyed the most and why?
Lately, I was home in Patagonia, and it was great to ride horse like mad in a wild landscape. I was stunned by the harmony between men and nature.
How do you come up with ideas for what you write? What methods do you use to flesh out your idea to determine if it’s salable?
I always think : What do I want to see ? Who do I want to meet? People are very important to me. They are the soul of a country or place. I also like to mix past and present. The salad has to be interesting, human and fun.
How have you used the Internet to boost your writing career?
I have my own a web site: http://www.franciscamatteoli.com.
I think the Internet is great. It saves time. It’s totaly international. People all over the world have access to internet.
Is there anything you wish to add that we have not covered?
What about : how you get your hair done in the jungle ? In another interview maybe?
That would be great Francisca à bientôt et merci pour votre participation.
Bon chance with all of your future endeavours.