Fathom Questionnaire: Laura Aviva
by Laura Aviva
Hometown: Los Angeles (born and bred); New York City (current home base).
Occupation: All things l'aviva home.
Favorite destinations: Istanbul, Barcelona, Bahia, Mexico City (and pretty much any Mexican beach), Marrakesh, Joshua Tree.
Dying to visit: The Turkish Aegean coast on a gullet; Beirut, Lebanon; Aleppo, Syria (in a less tumultuous time); Corisca, France.
Bizarre travel rituals: I'm not particularly superstitious, but a Bolivian shaman who read my cocoa leaves gifted me with a small collection of protection amulets and told me that I must always have them with me when I travel. And so I do.
In-fight relaxation regime: Sleep. I have a remarkable talent for sleeping in moving vehicles.
Always in carry-on: Moisturizer of every imaginable kind. Berroca.
Concierge or DIY: Extra-savvy network of friends — and friends of friends — around the world.
See it all or take it easy: Somewhere right in the middle.
Drive or be driven: Definitely be driven. I'm a horrible driver, and I'm map-phobic.
Travel hero: My friend Lisa Lindblad. She does intrepid and luxe with equal ease and grace. And she has an uncanny ability to find the best places, the prettiest things, and the most interesting people everywhere she goes.
Weirdest thing seen on travels: Not exactly the weirdest, but the most other-worldly: the church in the town of Chamula in Chiapas, Mexico. The combination of pre-conquest Mayan beliefs fused with 15th-century Catholicism, played out in modern day, is movingly magical.
Best hotel amenity: Havaianas in your size at The Fasano, Rio. Flip-flops are a straight route to my heart.
I dream about my meal at Ardigna in Sicily. It was raucous and delicious and boozy and epic — and shared with some of my favorite-ever people.
Everywhere I go, I check out where the locals buy their food: the sprawling outdoor markets, the food halls, the supermarkets, the specialty shops, the hole-in-the-wall restaurants...
I always bring home honey. (Maybe not always. But exceedingly often).
If I ever return to a certain Northern highway in Uzbekistan, it will be too soon. That was a horrendously eerie six-hour drive that I wish never to repeat.
I travel for every reason under the sun. Because there's truly nothing I love more.