Celebrity Travel & StyleInterviewsJet Set PetLuxury VoyagesSuite Dreams - The World's Best SuitesTime TravelerTop 5Luxury Travel TrendsWeekend Away
Destination WeddingsFamily Vacation PackagesSpa & Wellness PackagesRomantic & Honeymoon PackagesGirls GetawaysSpring SpecialsWinter Getaway Packages
ArticlesThe Best Hotels, Resorts & Villas Around the World
Beach & Island Resorts5-Star City HotelsAdventure Lodges & Eco EscapesBoutique City HotelsCountry House HotelsRomantic RetreatsLuxury Guest RanchesLuxury Safari Camps & LodgesGolf Resorts & LodgesSpa Resorts & Wellness RetreatsSki Resorts & LodgesWine Country GetawaysLuxury Family Travel & ResortsNew HotelsHot Hotel Openings
Beach, Coastal & Island VillasCountry VillasGolf VillasSki VillasLuxury Villas & Vacation Rentals Around the WorldHotel Branded Residences
Luxury Cruises & YachtingLuxury Car RentalTravel Tips & AdviceAirline NewsUltimate TripsBusiness TravelFamily TravelLuxury SafarisPrivate Jet TravelRail Journeys: The World's Most Scenic Train Rides
RestaurantsBars & NightclubsAfternoon TeaCoffeeCooking ClassesCulinary TravelWine Travel
Spa & Wellness RetreatsYogaGolf GetawaysTennisSki Vacations
Gift GuideBeach and ResortwearBeauty and FragranceBooksFashionHome StyleLuggage and HandbagsLuxury Autos & Driving ExperiencesMen's StyleTravel EssentialsWatches & JewelryWine and SpiritsWorld's Most Expensive
Back to:  Home > News > Interviews


Interview with Baroness Monica von Neumann

April 22, 2010 - By Christine Gray

Luxury Travel Magazine interviews Baroness Monica von Neumann, the businesswoman, tastemaker and former Dior and Yves St. Laurent model who is known within the most elite circles of society as an authority on everything "luxury" from dining to decorating, travel to hosting, jewels to sports cars. One part Martha Stewart and another part Wendy Williams, this aristocrat-turned-lifestyle expert doles out advice with the utmost elegance and just a touch of Detroit soul.

You recently traveled to Africa. Please tell us about that trip.

My trip to Africa was a humanitarian mission, not a luxury trip. I spent time in Meru, Amboseli and Nairobi. The trip was amazing and life changing but not a vacation getaway. My only luxury item on the trip was one glass of champagne while looking at Mount Kilimanjaro at sunset--that was priceless. The sky in Kenya is something I have never seen. The people are warm and kind. Although I wasn't there for pleasure, I found the dichotomy between the poverty and the beauty of the land to be profound. Kenya has such rich land, beautiful skies, exotic animals and unique sounds, I couldn't believe it was the same country that was also home to countless HIV positive children, hungry citizens and homeless with no shelter. I was in permanent awe.

How often are you able to travel for pleasure and who comes with you?

I typically try to travel 6 times a year. My best friend usually comes with, and sometimes daughter Dorian.

We heard that you like to always take a little bit of home with you wherever you go. What would that be?

Sometimes I take a throw, family photo, incense or run to the nearest gift shop for scented candles. I always order fresh flowers for the room, and it makes me feel at home.

How do you choose a hotel when you travel and what services do you consider essential?

Having travelled all over the world for many years (and I won't say for how many years), I go according to recommendations and research. If I am going to an island then I choose based on how far the beach is to my front door. In any hotel, privacy is key. A good concierge and immaculate housekeeping are essential. If it's a hotel that you frequent it's always nice if the hotel keeps a list of your favorites.

Do you use a travel agent? Do you use any travel websites?

I do use travel websites for customer reviews and rankings of hotels. Testimonials really help in the decision making process.

Do you have a favorite hotel?

Definitely the Hotel Splendido in Portofino, Italy. The service is amazing, food is incredible and the location is perfect. They are mind readers – they will remember your name and exactly what you love each time you visit. There is a total sense of privacy there that will allow you to escape and truly enjoy your stay.

What activities do you enjoy on holiday?

Being an experienced traveler, in addition to the requisite swimming, shopping and dining, I enjoy going off the path. I love to find small restaurants with just a few tables, tasting wines from different regions and a savoring a decadent gelato at a café.

What are your luxury requirements when you travel on business?

Flowers and candles for my room, a comfortable seat on plane, and as few connecting flights as possible. Non-stop travel is a luxury!

What has been your favorite destination(s) to date and where haven't you been that is at the top of your "must see" list?

My favorite destination so far has been Thailand. The Maldives is at the top of my list of places to go.

What current project(s) are you working on?

I'm currently busy preparing to launch my own candle line "Baroness von Neumann" - these scents are developed strictly from my travels around the world with inspiration drawn mainly from my trips to Europe and Africa. The following are descriptions of each scent:

SAVON: Sparkly floral Aldehydic with notes of Jasmin, Jonquil, Rose and Lily of the Valley with a woody, musky, ambery background.

ATLAS: A scintillating display of spicy Ceylon Cinnamon and Zanzibar Cove layered over smoky peat, Sandalwood, Orange Flowers, Rosewood and red amber.

FETE: Tangy Navel Orange, hot spicy Seychelles Cinnamon, Zanzibar Clove and cool Norwegian Pine are juxtaposed with inimitable Indonesian Patchouli and exotic Amberwood.

MODENA: Stylish men's scent with crispy citrus top over a spicy middle and an herbal, highlighted by Neroli Bigarade and Italian Lemon.

I am also currently working with two amazing non-profit organizations that help HIV stricken children in Kenya--Aina and March to the Top. I am part of a team organizing fundraisers to assist these organizations in changing the lives of many children.


Featured Luxury Hotels





Kinglike Concierge & Luxury Villa Rentals - Mykonos, Greece
Kinglike is a luxury villa rentals and personal concierge services company based in Mykonos, Greece offering 150 villa rentals, concierge, event planning, luxury transfers, yacht charters, and more.



The Abaco Club on Winding Bay
A private, international sporting club and residential community situated on 453 acres in the Bahamas. The Abaco Club offers a world of relaxation with pristine white sand beaches, world-class Scottish styled links golf and a spectacular offering of other water, leisure and sporting activities.



Carneros Resort and Spa - Napa Valley, California
The resort features 86 charming private guest cottages and suites and nightly private luxury home rentals, each furnished with casual elegance and nestled in a lush garden courtyard with private deck.




Hotel del Coronado - San Diego
This majestic oceanfront beach resort engages the senses and its storied personality captivates the imagination of global guests and San Diego locals alike. Situated on America's most beloved beach, The Del is an iconic destination on every savvy traveler's must-see list.




The luxury lifestyle - how to spend it on autos, jets, yachts, real estate, travel, shopping, wellness and all the best in life.




Grand Hotel Portovenere, Italy
The charming village of Portovenere, which sits on the point connecting the renowned Cinque Terre and the inspiring Gulf of the Poets, is the perfect place to experience the serenity of Eastern Liguria.




Eden Roc at Cap Cana - Punta Cana
Offering exclusive luxury in the Dominican Republic, Eden Roc at Cap Cana, the only Relais & Chateaux hotel on the island, features 34 freestanding suites with private pools and stunning views.




Explore the world outdoors - discover the best travel adventures, glamping, activities, gear, apparel, vehicles, and more.




Primland - Meadows of Dan, VA
A pristine Blue Ridge Mountain resort offering 12,000 acres of space, sky and shifting moods. Primland is the ultimate getaway for world-class golf, refined dining, and outdoor activities in an environment of rare natural beauty.




The secret to vitality, health and happiness in the New Year! Lose weight, feel great like the A-List!



Private Villa Rentals - Caribbean & Mexico
In the realm of world-class luxury private villa rentals, we know that the exceptional experiences our guests deserve are about much more than just the villa itself.



Living the dream - the world's best yachts for sale and charter. See the latest trends in yacht design, tech, toys, destinations and lifestyle.



Mountain Shadows
The new resort features timeless modern design, 183 guestrooms, a restaurant with an exhibition kitchen, two pools, a high-tech fitness facility, a fully revamped short golf course, a golf grill and lounge as well as 37,500 square feet of indoor and outdoor event space.



Jade Mountain - St. Lucia
Jade Mountain is an exclusive luxury 'resort within a resort' with 24 suites at St. Lucia's famed Anse Chastanet Resort, in a truly romantic and magical setting poised high overlooking St. Lucia's Piton World Heritage site and the Caribbean Sea.



Hotel Valley Ho - Scottsdale, AZ
Escape to the sun in Scottsdale! A hideaway for celebrities, this Downtown Scottsdale resort features generously sized guest rooms with all-glass walls opening onto airy patios or balconies, many with views of Camelback Mountain.



Luxury travel and lifestyle - discover all the best destinations, hotels, resorts, nightlife, adventure, shopping, safaris, villas, spas and much more.



Anse Chastanet - St. Lucia
Set amid a lush 600-acre estate with two soft-sand beaches and breathtaking views of St. Lucia's iconic twin Pitons mountains, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.



Meadowood Napa Valley
One of the true luxury resorts in Napa Valley offering golf, tennis, croquet, hiking, swimming, fitness, spa, wine education and a Michelin three-star restaurant dining experience...all on a private 250-acre estate in the heart of the Napa Valley.




Exploring the World in Style - cruising, yachting, expeditions, family adventure, luxury, river cruising - all to the best destinations in the world.