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Herdiana Surachman

Hi Herdi, thank you so much for talking to us today! Please tell us a bit about yourself!

Hi my name is Herdi, and at the moment I am busy running my blog www.deluxshionist.com and collaborating with brands and agencies to create, I hope, appealing raw stories about my experience while traveling. But my blog is not only travel-centric, I also write about food, fashion, and pretty much everything inside my mind – writing is my active meditation and it’s good for me.

You run a luxury travel and lifestyle blog. What does luxury mean to you personally?

I always feel that luxury is something you feel, when people give me their genuine smile, when you feel welcome at the new places and you feel safe, excited to try new things, amazed with the beauty of something, and having time to enjoy yourself. After so many times I tried the most expensive food and stayed at the fanciest places, I always come back to the simplest things. Spending time with genuine friends and loving family is a priceless luxury moment.

For your blog you travel professionally. How is traveling as a blogger different from traveling as a private person?

As blogger maybe I am a bit worried about pictures I have taken. I mean I don’t really need staged, styled, and over-edited pictures, as when I worked for a magazine back in the day, because I believe that’s not something my readers are looking for from me. But I still want to produce acceptable but raw pictures, so my audience can expect the same experience as me.

Since I consider blogging is a job, on my days off, I totally enjoy the moment, I don’t really care about the pictures, but when something comes up that is funny or inspiring, I will share with friends, on the blog or on Instagram later.

You’ve already visited a lot of places around the globe. What was your favorite travel destination so far and why?

I am so glad that I live here in Indonesia, apart from a sad political atmosphere and anything negative, Indonesia is a very beautiful country. I love Bali, and I always get excited at the moment my plane lands, when I enter the airport and smell the air of Bali. I am even thinking about moving to Bali, work and run a business there. Wish me luck – I just really need to be 100% sure about that.

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Surely there are also some places you haven’t seen yet. Which place in the world would you love to travel to and why?

I love reading books; one of my favorite authors is Dan Brown, who wrote Da Vinci Code as well as his latest work, Origin. The book literally captured my mind with its places and experiences, from Istanbul to Florence and Barcelona; exploring the shores of the Mediterranean Sea or even cross-continent to Northern Africa. Sounds like it would be an amazing trip and adventure!

What are the items in your luggage that you can’t travel without?

Probably a comfortable pair of shoes and a smaller bag because I love walking. And, since I am getting old, probably my skin care. If I do not take the procuts with me, I am tempted to look at skin care stores and walk in to buy a new one. It always happens to me, oh God help me 😀

What’s your craziest travel story?

Other than countless times of running around terminals to catch the flights, I never thought that people would recognize me on the street in Paris.

One day I went to Paris after 4 days strolling around Prague and decided to take the train from Charles de Gaulle to my hotel at Rue de Clichy, by myself with my 25kg of luggage. I took the super crowded Metro, I had no idea about the route, so I spent about 45 minutes back and forth trying to decide whether to get out of the station or not. I was lost, because I didn’t have any data on my phone to even look at Google Maps.

I didn’t know how to get a cab, the sky was growing darker, and with the only French words I knew being “Bonjour, Excuse Moi, Monsieur, Madame and Merci Beaucoup” I was asking people in the street for directions to my hotel. Fortunately, I had picked the right station, and was heading towards the right street.

I was so exhausted and when I was about to scream at myself, a girl with a bike appeared, stopped, looked at me and said: “Herdiana???” I didnn’t even get it, how did she know my name? I said “Yes” with total confusion, then she said: “This is Wendy, from @nomadicfare, I follow you on Instagram!”

Then I got excited. She is a photographer from New York and we follow each other on Instagram, and we met in Paris. We exchanged numbers, because I thought we should hang out while in Paris. While my schedule for the first 3 days was already fixed, for the last 2 days I asked about her plans. She said she wanted to go to Sacre Coeur, and we should meet at Le Consulat. I didn’t know where that was and had changed hotel in between, so I was staying in Montmartre.

We didn’t meet, but the next day I just randomly strolled around the street, and realized Sacre Coeur was only 10 minutes from my hotel. Well it’s funny and it’s crazy, I will always remember this experience.

Thank you so much for sharing your stories with us, Herdi! We wish you pleasant travels in the future!

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