Serena Hood, Co-Founder of Collagerie + former Executive Fashion Director, British Vogue

As a leading fashion editor, Serena graced the guest lists of every top fashion week around the world on behalf of VOGUE UK. During this time, she became an expert at looking good on the move and spotting emerging talent. Now, Serena has channeled over a decade of fashion experience into her new digital shopping platform Collagerie with fellow co-founder Lucinda Chambers, which launched in November 2019.

We speak to her about travel hacks, pools, and podcasts. Follow her updates at @serena_hood and check out @collagerie and 

Name three of your favorite hotels?

  • La Residence in Franschhoek, South Africa – my husband proposed to me over a picnic in the gardens, so it is a very special place to us. Every suite has a different theme and all uniquely decorated.
  • Le Bristol – the perfect home away from home in Paris.
  • Six Senses Zighy Bay – a real hidden gem, the resort sits under the mountains along the most beautiful sandy beach.
Le Bristol Paris

What is the best hotel amenity you’ve ever encountered?

The heated loo seats at the Malibu Beach Inn.

What hotel room design element can you not live without?

Black out shades.

Where would you go for a digital detox or just generally to get off the grid?

Sha Wellness Clinic is a sanctuary where you can really switch off. I remember leaving after five days feeling completely reset, recharged and “like new.”

You travel a lot for work…was this something you were seeking in a career? How do you make it as relaxing and fun as possible?

As an editor at Vogue I travelled a lot for fashion weeks and felt incredibly lucky to have a job that took me to beautiful cities, incredible hotels, and unforgettable fashion shows. A swimming pool while staying in a city is always a highlight and a great way to wake up and start the day.

What three songs are on your OOO playlist?

I actually listen to a lot of podcasts these days. Working on my own start up I love the stories and advice from entrepreneurs on ‘How I Built This.’

Do you have any favorite travel hacks?

I am too scared to try this myself, but a good friend I know always waits to be the last person to board the plane and sits in the first free seat in Business class. Apparently it works a charm!

What do you always bring with you in your carry-on?

Having recently lost my luggage, I now bring a complete wardrobe for the first 24 hours.

If you could quit your job and follow the “Mamma Mia” dream (ie open a small hotel in a foreign land or on a remote island), where would you do it?

It would have to be a vineyard in Provence. We would make our own rosé and drink it over long lunches with family and friends.

What’s the craziest thing you’ve purchased abroad and brought home (or tried to carry-on) from your travels?

A suitcase filled with my favourite fabric print to make curtains in our new home.

Beach or City or Mountain?

Beach every time.

Lost luggage, or lost phone?

Lost Phone.

Airplane food- Y/N?

Never – bring your own.

Window or Aisle?

Window for long haul, aisle for short trips.

Yoga or hotel gym?

Neither – get out and discover the place you’re visiting!

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