One scroll through Claudia Cusano’s Instagram takes you on a safari in Kenya, the French countryside (with Moët, naturally), and to the jungle-clad mountaintops of Jamaica. Not to mention the snowy peaks in her own backyard in Vancouver, where we visited her sunlit home full of finds from afar.
“The travel I did mostly growing up was between Vancouver and Florence. That’s where my father grew up, so I still have family there. What would happen was, we’d finish school, and then in the summer, we’d be shipped off to Florence. But there was always a caveat. The rule was we had to study something… but it didn’t feel like school. We were immersed into a different way of life, a different way of doing things.”
As Editor-in-Chief at NUVO Magazine, Claudia is usually on the other end of the questioning. We asked her what most inspires her about travel and how she integrates it into her home and life.
“Discovery – but that doesn’t necessarily mean something new. First-hand immersion into anything will always lead to discovery of some type. Feasting with the eyes, the ears, smells, tastes, and so forth.”
“Items that I may be gifted, or items that I’ve purchased along the way, are the things that I tend to live with. I have a few [favourite travel finds]: wonderful renaissance serving trays from Florence, a chess set purchased in Africa, a Maasai dancing stick, knick-knacks – or I guess what other people would call ‘dust collectors’ – which to me have some emotional significance. Every time I look at them, they pull up a memory of some type.”
“Africa holds a very special place in my heart. If there could be a way to have every child at some point step foot [in Africa] – it doesn’t matter which country in the continent – I feel the world would be a better place. There is something about the land there that transforms and transfixes.”
“We were heading out for a family vacation to the Caribbean and we go to check in and the agent says, ‘I can see you are a travelling family.’ And I look at her and say, ‘What do you mean?’ And she says, ‘You carry so very little.’ We each had our own carry-on bag, not showing up with a lot of stuff – which ties into the idea of Kotn. Everything that we put inside our carry-on has to be multi-use.”
A media veteran, Claudia Cusano lives in Vancouver, BC and is Editor-in-Chief at NUVO Magazine.