A former luxury travel magazine editor and jet-setting journalist, Stacy Small founded Elite Travel International in 2005 with the goal of changing the landscape of offerings for the new generation of affluent luxury travelers. Ten years later, Stacy is the go-to luxury travel advisor for a mixed portfolio of Silicon Valley executives, celebrities and entrepreneurs seeking a global-minded approach and efficient, fast, knowledgeable response time to any level of luxury travel request.
Along with her dynamic team spanning the globe from London to LA and Mexico to Maui, Stacy is known for taking the hassle out of high-level travel. An early adopter of social media, she has built a following of 100,000+ on platforms such as Twitter, Instagram and Facebook as @elitetravelgal. Fans and followers look to her for live-time updates and photos to assist in their own travel-planning decisions.
Stacy is regularly quoted as an expert source on luxury travel in the New York Times, Forbes, AskMen, Coastal Living, Travel + Leisure and often tapped as a speaker on topics from travel to social media to small business success.
The winner of Virtuoso’s Most Innovative Travel Advisor award in 2013, Stacy continues to set the pace as a “different” kind of travel professional and lives up to her nickname (given to her by clients) as “the Google of Travel.” She splits her time between Los Angeles and Maui and is a passionate fundraiser for The Breast Cancer Research Foundation and a longtime dog-rescuer.
1. What are three words that best describe you?
Passionate, authentic, inspiring.
2. Tell us why you’re awesome in two sentences or less.
I’ve never let life challenges get in my way of seeing the joy in any situation and embracing it – fearless is my favorite F word. After years of overcoming challenges and major life traumas (I lost both my parents to cancer in their 60’s), my life philosophy is when you don’t know what might happen, absolutely anything is possible.
3. What are your three biggest indulgences?
Luxury hotels, first class flights and Jimmy Choo shoes.
4. What’s currently your favorite…
Restaurant: Mama’s Fish House on Maui
Food: Healthy delicious organic when possible
Cocktail: Skinny Margarita on the rocks with salt
Shopping destination/store: Holt Renfrew in Vancouver
Fashion item: Rag & Bone jeans
Place to hangout: Maui
Travel item: 360 Black Cashmere wrap for the plane
Beauty product: Nars tinted 30spf moisturizer
Skincare product: Cosmelan “magic” skin cream
Hostess gift: Tobi Tobin chocolates
Home décor item: White roses. West Elm throws. Photos of my dogs. Jonathan Adler grapefruit candles.
Book: Seven Spiritual Laws of Success. The Ultimate Happiness Prescription (both by Deepak Chopra)
Magazine: Vanity Fair
5. What’s the ONE thing you absolutely can’t live without?
6. What is your biggest pet peeve?
People who are not honest with themselves or others. The truth always prevails.
7. If you could have dinner with anyone (living or not) who would it be?
My parents. I miss them so much and would love one more dinner with them!
8. What does it mean to you to have a strong, engaging brand and how has having one helped you?
It is essential to have a brand that reflects who you are as a person and what you do for others. Our new branded tagline “You live your life on the cutting edge, let us get you there in style” sums up the mission of the Elite Travel International team as we are not your average travel firm and need a brand with a message that supports this.
9. What is your #1 tip for fellow women entrepreneurs?
Don’t worry about what the so-called competition is doing. Always do what you know is instinctively right for you, your brand and your clients and NEVER ever shy away from asking for help when you need it. And…never be the smartest person in the room!
9. The Ultimate Happiness Prescription: 7 Keys to Joy and Elightenment
Bestselling author Deepak Chopra shows us seven keys to uncover the true secrets of joy in the most difficult times.