India Hicks is always on the go. During any given month she boards a
plane to New York, Miami or London from the secluded island in the
Bahamas she calls home. This London-born style setter keeps busy with
numerous projects, including a line for Crabtree & Evelyn, a jewelry
line she launched last year, not to mention her continuous television
commentary on all things royal. We caught up with Hicks while she was
enjoying a brief stopover in Miami—just long enough for her to share
some of her well-earned travel tips.
What is always in your travel bag?The expensive
vitamins I forget to take; red-eye reliever drops, because I am always
on a redeye, with red eyes; makeup I don't really understand how to use;
my four year old's hair clips and my 13 year old's fluorescent-green,
Beats headphones that make me look ridiculous. And lurking at the bottom
of the bag, you would find a muddle of mixed currencies.
What are your favorite American cities and why?New
York, L.A. and Miami for their energy and all those sensational white
teeth. In England, we don't do white teeth. I also recently revisited
Seattle and loved all the crunchy granola goodness there and the
slightly slower pace.
Which hotels are on the top of your list right now?Blakes
in London, a grown-up retreat and perfect hideout. Particularly
tempting is the acclaimed restaurant and bar, which serves a
pomegranate-and-lime cocktail called Cardinal Habit.
What lessons have you learned from all of your travels?At
18 I backpacked around the world. It was a wonderful alternate
education. It opened my eyes to and made me more patient and
understanding of other ways of life and other religions.
What is your favorite restaurant right now?The
Wolsely in London—old-fashioned charm with a dazzling crowd of clients.
The cheese soufflé served in a micro cast-iron pan is quite memorable.
Tell us about some of your most adventurous travels.I
went to Munich to do bungee jumping before it was legal in England. I
have tandem skydived in New Zealand. I have climbed into the Grand
Canyon and slept in a cave filled with bats (I had waist-length hair and
did not sleep a wink imagining the bats would start to nest in my
locks). I have ridden camels in Egypt and bareback ponies in Cuba, but
adventure can always be found closer to home in Harbour Island.
Since you are a mother, where is the best place to go with young kids?I
am bringing up five children. They range from 15 to four and are all
pretty much terrors. The snow is a good place for them. Lots of skiing
to tire them out.
Where do you think you can get the most value for your money?The
Hilton Hotel in St. Petersburg (Florida, not Russia). Their clean,
comfortable rooms cost less than my teenager's baseball boots.
What is the most exotic locale you have ever been to?The deep countryside of Burma, where they had never seen blonde hair before.
Where have you gone recently that you would like to return to?If
a few years ago counts as recent, then it would be the safari in
Africa. There is nothing like a chilly African dawn on a deserted plain,
watching hundreds of thousands of zebras feeding.