In Conversation with Scott Williams Partners Victoria and Flo

Mother and daughter duo Victoria and Flo not only run Scott Williams together but they are the best of travel companions. Having worked together for 8 years, they play to each others strengths and share the same aspirations in finding those extraordinary travel experiences for their clients. With an infectious energy, both are either ‘on... Read more »

Mother and daughter duo Victoria and Flo not only run Scott Williams together but they are the best of travel companions. Having worked together for 8 years, they play to each others strengths and share the same aspirations in finding those extraordinary travel experiences for their clients.

With an infectious energy, both are either ‘on the biz’ – a phrase coined by Victoria and well versed in the office – or hotfooting across the globe in search of inspiring destinations. Living life to the full with a good dose of having a laugh on the side, they are masters in quality, detail and good times!

Being experts in their field with handfuls of insider knowledge, we catch up with Victoria and Flo about their approach to travel when on holiday themselves from flight routines to unforgotten travel memories.

VICTORIA

Describe a typical day in Greece when you’re on holiday?

When I am in Greece I tend to be working but my downtime is glorious…I dream about these days all winter. I wake up and sit on my terrace reading and listening to the birds and watching the mountains change colour on the mainland. Then I grab my stuff and head down to a little bay below the house and have a big long swim in that crazy clear blue water.

We live simply during that day and have a light lunch under the olive trees. Tomatoes, olive oil, feta,  local bread and peaches with honey. In the height of the summer a siesta works…! Evenings are lovely ..choosing a village and wandering round chatting to our local friends and deciding where to go for dinner…

What books do you like to read on holiday? 

I try to keep my reading light but usually end up with gritty grizzly world war 2 novels set in Greece or France. Before my mother in law died she gave me her 10 favourite novels of all time. That was the best present I have ever had and they have all come with me at one stage or another on my travels.

Personal touch is key to the experience at Scott Williams. What does this mean to you when you’re travelling?

Us at Scott Williams are obsessed with giving our clients the best time we even book their tables months before they go ..the locals find it hilarious. We just want them to get the right table in the right spot …or swim in the clearest… quietest beach. Wherever you go in the world, insider information is everything, otherwise you can waste  valuable time. I certainly like someone doing the research for me when I travel further afield.

If I was to take you on a food adventure somewhere, where should I take you?

I remember eating a tomato in Italy when I was very young and thinking ‘what the hell is this!’ – before I hadn’t liked tomatoes … So I reckon Italy every time. We have made some fabulous friends in Umbria where we have houses and we are always stunned by the food and wine put in front of us.

How have you seen travel trends change over time?

Travel trends change depending on phase of life. Some of our clients first come to us with teenagers looking for somewhere safe AND fun. Those teenagers are now married and have babies so grandparents want big toddler friendly houses often more rural with a big pool and lots of help.

People are becoming more environmentally aware so rather than lots of little holidays with lots of different flights, they choose carefully and do one big, longer holiday.

Where’s top of travel your list for 2024?

Forever a small Greek or Croatian island where the sea is fantastic. Boat life is so bonding and fun for all ages.

I also have a passion for Morocco (and they need us post earthquake) – its exotic and different. The houses we have are insanely comfy and the service is superb. You only have to step out of the door and you are in a crazy exciting, evocative place. And so near for Winter sun!     V.    

We also are on the look out in Sicily as we keep being asked!

What are your culinary travel memories?     

Sri Lanka blew my mind..right from street food to the fancy stuff in the catered villas. I just kept on eating. The family told me I was greedy as I polished of the mind blowing mangoes!

I lived in Normandy on a Calvados farm for 2 years and experienced all sorts of strange food. White sausage (boudain blanc)…wild boar (sanglier) Loads of cream..

I have travelled all over Greece with my Greek friends – that’s when you really get to understand the history and fabulous combination of ingredients. Believe me you have to ask and be adventurous. They are very proud of their ancient recipes.

Do you have an airport/travel routine when you go away?

I like to be really early …I just cant help it. It drives everyone mad. I used to be scared of flying (not ideal in my job!) but did a ‘fear of flying’ course and it has done the trick.

Definitely download films before you go … Large bloody Mary …

If you could retire to any of your destinations, where would you choose?

Definitely our little island of Paxos but I will always be a Bruton, Somerset girl in the winter…surrounded by our family…halloween, Christmas, big Sunday lunches and big trees and woods…

The mountains or the sea?

Greek Sea!

FLO

How did you know you wanted to work in Travel?

From a very young age I loved that feeling of packing a bag and going to the airport. The different colours and smells have always inspired me, always will. I guess I knew when I was about 12 years old.

Which is the most memorable beach you’ve visited?

It would have to be on beloved Paxos. It’s tucked away in the south of the island and very secret, one I don’t tell anyone about. The first time I came across it, there was a herd of goats grazing on the land nearby, practically leading us the way.

Is there an underestimated destination that you think is worth more attention?

Ithaca! It’s BEYOND magical and hard to find very comfortable places to stay. It’s Gods land, so protected by the Greek Gods.

Which destination could you visit again and again?

I have travelled to many places and loved all the experiences but the Greek islands

will always have my heart.

What are your top 5 travel playlist songs?

Neil Young: Harvest Moon

Roisin Murphy: Incapable of Love

Everybody’s Free (wear sunscreen)

Whitney Houston: I wanna dance with somebody

Burgs: Mt. Wolf

Who’s your best travel companion?

It’s cheesy I know, but my number one travel buddy is Victoria Hooberman. We never stop laughing and there is never a dull moment.

What’s the most memorable holiday from your childhood?

I don’t really remember how old I was, probably, 4!? But I remember arriving at a villa in Spain, late at night with all our family and feeling that evening heat. Looking up at the palm trees was such an exciting moment. It’s always been about those Mediterranean nights for me.

What’s your can’t-live-without-product to take away with you?

Clarins, flash balm

What’s your top tip for taking a holiday snap?

I love a time lapse of the sea, boats passing by and clouds moving, but you have to be patient. Set up a good angle on your iPhone for a few minutes and enjoy putting music to it.

The mountains or the Sea?

100% SEA! I’m in total ore of the sea, it’s another world. But growing up as a very young child swimming in the Ionian sea, there’s nothing like it. Crystal clear and like silk. Makes everyone feel like a mermaid/merman! When I’m in that Ionian sea, it feels like one big hug!

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