Interview with Keith Jenkins of Velvet Escape (@velvetescape): Lucky 13 Questions

from Keith's blog from Keith's blog

Keith Jenkins Velvet Escape

Keith is not only a travel blogging inspiration, he is a life inspiration and one of the few people that I believe has really researched and thought through the future awaiting those in the travel blogging profession. I have had a few chances to sit down and talk to Keith about travel, blogging and life and each conversation was more thought provoking than the last.

He left a lucrative career in corporate and investment banking to do what he is doing now — providing information and insights to people that want to travel in luxury around the world. He has visited over 60 countries on 6 continents and, as he puts it, “Velvet Escape is about getting away from our daily routines & exploring, being adventurous, reflecting & doing it in style.”

Is it the perfect explanation for what Keith is all about.

So go check out his blog, Velvet Escape, and follow him on Twitter, and in the meantime, enjoy his answers to the Lucky 13:

1 – Worst meal you’ve ever had?

A hamburger at the airport in Dar-es-Salaam. I’m not sure what was in that burger but I was so hungry. I took a bite and it was pretty disgusting. The ‘meat’ had a weird pungent smell and had a leathery texture whilst the bun was papery. I spat out that first bite and threw the rest away. Gosh, I can still conjure the taste of that first bite till this day!

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=upfqG9stj-g&feature=related

2 – What fictional character would you most like to trade places with?

Any character that can fly so I can fly anywhere at my own leisure and help reduce carbon emissions. Erm… Superman? I wouldn’t mind those super powers either. Hey, didn’t he have x-ray vision? LOL! ;-)

3 – Fill in the blank: I can beat almost anyone at _________.

naming capital cities around the world. Though… with the big 4-0 approaching fast, my memory isn’t what it used to be.

4 – Who is your favorite musician or band?

Madonna. She’s not the best singer, nor the best dancer or actress but see what she’s achieved. Respect!

5 – You have done some amazing luxury travel — tell us the single most luxurious place you have ever stayed at.

Sofitel Bora Bora on Motu

from Keith’s blog — I’m ready for this place

When it comes to the total experience, I would have to choose the Sofitel Motu Bora Bora. I stayed in an overwater bungalow with unforgettable views of the Bora Bora lagoon and Mount Otemanu. Colourful fish in the sea could be viewed through the glass coffee table. The experience of waking up to the sounds of the waves and the sea breeze, then jumping off the deck for a morning swim, is one I’ll never forget. In the late afternoons, the hotel staff would bring a cocktail and amuses to the bungalow and I would sit on the deck and watch the procession of all sorts of fish, mantas and baby sharks pass right under my feet, cocktail in hand of course.

6 – Give us your ideal dinner party: you and 4 others.

On a boat cruising through the canals of Amsterdam. Simply magical! Oh, I can only invite four people? My sister would have to be one of them (because I know she’ll love it and she’s hilarious after a few vinos). I would also invite my best friends Eugene and Allan and err… Sir Richard Branson. Haha! We’ll have a fab time I’m sure!

7 – What do you miss most, aside from your family, from your original home country of Malaysia?

That’s easy. The food! Malaysian food is seriously good.

8 – What is your best karaoke song?

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gq28UQmxDnw

I’ve been to a karaoke club several times but sung only once (after one too many G&T’s). The song: oh no… did I actually sing “All By Myself”? I can’t remember. ;-)

9 – Best bit of graffiti you have ever seen.

The funkiest graffiti I’ve seen were in the streets of Valparaiso, Chile.

10 – What is the oddest place you have ever spent the night?

In a cave. Mind you, it was a five-star hotel cave. The Kagga Kamma Private Game Reserve in South Africa has these fabulous cave rooms – a pretty quirky experience!

11 – Most significant task you have completed so far in your life?

Ok, this may sound corny but it was quite a task trying to find reasons to love myself and feel good about it. I have discovered though that this task has allowed me to love others a lot easier and embrace love. It’s brought a great sense of meaning to my life and makes every experience a lot richer.

12 – Spoil a movie for us — what is your favorite movie ending?

The Sixth Sense – I guess everyone’s seen this movie so there’s no point in elaborating. :-)

13 – If you were confined to one country for the rest of your life, where would you choose… and what would your profession of choice be?

The Netherlands. I simply love living here. I guess I would continue doing what I do right now: blogging, consulting and speaking.

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I’m an attorney that took off on my birthday in December of 2008 to circumnavigate the globe without ever getting on an airplane. After 16 months, 6 continents and 44 countries, I made it all the way back home. Right now, I am back on the road writing about it all. Read more by Michael Hodson and connect on Google Plus.

25 Responses to “Interview with Keith Jenkins of Velvet Escape (@velvetescape): Lucky 13 Questions” Subscribe

  1. Keith October 7, 2011 at 10:18 am #

    Thank you Michael for the invitation. I had a great time answering your questions. :-)

    Cheers,
    Keith
    Keith recently posted..My velvet escape travel tip: Antigua, Guatemala

  2. Will - Gap Daemon October 7, 2011 at 10:56 am #

    Ha! Great to see Keith profiled like that.

    I’ve got a few things to say about his musical choice but not much else to dispute.

    Love it how he walked away from that career to dive headfirst into Velvet Escape – you’re an inspiration to us all!

  3. Elise @ Positive World Travel October 7, 2011 at 11:28 am #

    I really agree that Keith is an inspiration to the travel blogging community. Thanks for sharing this interview with us all!

    I would love to go to Bora Bora one day-that would be a truly luxurious experience!!

  4. Abi October 8, 2011 at 4:37 am #

    All by myself?! What a vision I now have in my head – and ears ;)
    Abi recently posted..How Social Media Contributed to the London Riots

  5. Andrea October 8, 2011 at 9:12 am #

    Really loved your answer to number 11 – I think something many people struggle with
    Andrea recently posted..Oktoberfest 2011: The World’s Greatest Beer Festival

  6. Natalie October 8, 2011 at 8:24 pm #

    Great interview and of course the Sixth Sense is the best movie ending of all time…

  7. lara dunston October 8, 2011 at 11:28 pm #

    Nice interview with Keith. Love this series!
    lara dunston recently posted..Thai Cooking Class at the Mandarin Oriental Cooking School

  8. Abby October 9, 2011 at 7:33 am #

    Yay Keith! Not only did this man make sure I never got lost last year at TBU (I couldn’t have asked for a better next-door neighbor!), but he really was an inspiration. His speech really got me going. Plus, he’s so classy. :)

  9. The Travel Chica October 10, 2011 at 6:01 am #

    Enjoyed this interview. I always enjoy the creative questions and answers in this series.
    The Travel Chica recently posted..Feeling Small in Buenos Aires

  10. Beverly October 10, 2011 at 6:51 am #

    I caught this interview from a LinkedIn post and as soon as I read “Keith is an inspiration” I knew who it was! Not many bloggers are known as well by their first name as pen name. I couldn’t agree more and have learned alot from Keith – a fine writer, but beyond that, always willing to help those less accomplished with advice or just words of encouragement. Keith is indeed an inspiration and a class act!! – Beverly

  11. Erik October 10, 2011 at 6:34 pm #

    Keith has a great blog. Always a unique perspective.
    Erik recently posted..Photo of the Day- Wind Cave National Park, South Dakota

  12. Pete October 13, 2011 at 4:20 am #

    Great interview Keith. I have to agree that the best graffiti that we’ve seen as well was in Valpo.

    And about the Netherlands, we just finished a little jaunt through their, and what a wonderful surprise. We absolutely loved every minute of it. We will certainly be returning someday to explore more.

  13. Sophie October 13, 2011 at 6:14 am #

    Fun series here, Michael. It’s obvious you put an effort into each one. Enjoyed reading about Velvet Keith :)
    Sophie recently posted..What to do on a Friday night in London if you’re time travelling

  14. Randy October 24, 2011 at 4:51 am #

    Funny, it usually takes Beth a few G&T’s before she can start belting out karaoke too! : ) Good to know about the hamburgers at Dar-es-Salaam, I’ll make sure I’m prepared if I’m ever touching down there.
    Randy recently posted..Si’an Kaan Biosphere- A relaxing adventure on the shores of @RivieraMaya

  15. Kirsten October 25, 2011 at 5:06 pm #

    Great to get to know Keith more!! He’s such a terrific person, not just online. I too would love to stay in an overwater bungalow. Nice to know from Keith it would be as spectacular as I imagine.

    Also, I too would invite Sir Richard Branson :)

  16. DTravelsRound November 4, 2011 at 3:46 pm #

    Love Keith!! Richard Branson as a dinner guest? Brilliant.
    DTravelsRound recently posted..Floating elephant poo and other awesomeness

    • Michael Hodson November 13, 2011 at 7:44 pm #

      I agree. Branson is an inspired choice. On my list now.

  17. Caz Makepeace November 10, 2011 at 6:21 am #

    I would ask Branson to dinner as well, in the Bora Boras!
    Great interview. keith is an inspiration to all of us bloggers!
    Caz Makepeace recently posted..New Feature: Travel Talk Q and A on Facebook

  18. Keith November 13, 2011 at 4:04 am #

    Woohoo! Thanks so much for the kind words. :-) It would be so cool if we could all get together on Bora Bora, invite Sir Richard Branson, drink cocktails, talk travel and blogging & belt out some karaoke tunes. Hahaha!

  19. Emma Bowen December 7, 2011 at 2:25 pm #

    Yay Keith! You beat everyone to it! Nice interview with Keith. Woohoo!
    Emma Bowen recently posted..Cancer Tattoos Tumblr

  20. Flashpacker March 12, 2012 at 9:24 am #

    Just started travel blogging on our rtw journey, I follow Keith on twitter as he’s witty and intelligent about travel matters. Good to learn a bit more about the man behind the face.
    Flashpacker recently posted..Three Months Flashpacking

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