Travel by Design: The New Face of Luxury Travel

“Travel is like a giant blank canvas, and the painting on the canvas is only limited by one’s imagination.” — Ross Morley. This is a motto that rings true to the Travel Designers at luxury private-guided tour company, Jacada Travel ( For those seeking to ignite the imagination and boldly go where their peers have yet to go, a jammed tour bus and a checklist of over-crowded tourist sites simply won’t do. Those who seek to escape to untouched corners of the globe, mingle with the locals, partake in tradition and truly escape the mundane, the “Travel Designers” at Jacada are there to help.

Gone are the days of dowdy agents who create the same itinerary over and over for clients. With the advancements of technology and the ever-growing question: “will travel agents one day be obsolete?” Many wonder where the luxury travel industry will head in the 21st century, yet the answer is simple: No, the new faces of travel agents, the “Travel Designers,” have arrived and they are here to stay.

For a Travel Designer, the process is the reverse of one by which most travel agents used to abide. Contrary to travel agents in the past, Jacada’s Travel Designers arise from the generations of independent, intrepid globetrotters and avoid pigeonholing their clients into a pre-set menu of travel options. Instead, the process begins with the traveler and their utmost inspirations. From there, the Travel Designer forges ahead and seeks out new and exciting experiences that fit with the client’s lifestyle, fitness level, and interests. 

“Unlike selling pre-set packages and tried and tested tourist routes, a Travel Designer at Jacada Travel sells their personal connections, contacts with longtime friends on the ground, and personal experience all packaged into a perfect itinerary featuring top level service and accommodations,” says Alex Malcolm, the founder of Jacada Travel. “For a traveler, it’s like tapping into a tremendous network of friends who are there to guide their adventure in the most harmonious and enjoyable way.”

From flying safaris in Namibia, to locals-only Tango fiestas in Buenos Aires, and private picnics atop Venezuela’s stunning Angel Falls, where there is no human in sight, Jacada’s new wave of “Travel Designers” set no boundaries and let the clients do the dreaming, then they take care of the rest.

“Can we DO that?” If you can dream it, they can do it. Here are some recent adventures the team at Jacada Travel has facilitated for their clients.

●      Heli-Surfing in Chile: On a recent trip to Chile, an adventurous family that was staying in the capital, Santiago, for the night, decided they needed more action for the day. Being avid surfers and no ocean in sight, they turned to their Trip Designers at Jacada who had created their adventure to add some spice to their day. Within hours, Jacada’s team had arranged for a helicopter to take the family from Santiago to an inaccessible surfing spot for most people, where the family had the open surf completely to themselves. After the family took to the waves, they were greeted with a picnic and cocktails before being chopper-ed back to their hotel.

●      I Do! Creative Proposals: For a couple in love traveling through Brazil, Jacada was faced with a challenging task – to help devise a creative way for the man to pop the big question. Having an extensive network of contacts on the grounds in Brazil, Jacada was quick to develop a truly creative and unexpected proposal. One morning, in the small town of Pipa, the woman woke up to a beautiful breakfast and a local newspaper on her balcony. The newspaper was turned to a page that expressed her fellow traveler’s love for her and asked her to be his wife – all arranged by Jacada’s Travel Designers through their personal network on the ground. The rest was history. 

●      Last Minute Change of Plans? The Trip Must Go On: During the 2010 blizzard in England, a group traveling to Brazil from London was set back due to a flight cancellation out of London, meaning they would lose days out of their trip, if not their entire trip altogether. The Jacada Travel Designers had to think quick and immediately booked their clients luxury sedans that took the group from London to their connecting flight in Paris, from which the group safely boarded their flight to Rio.

Jacada’s Travel Designers are selected because they know things like the distance from each location and the state of the roads that link them. The bellies of airports, and how they can get their clients through them faster, how long they need to acclimatise before ascending to Machu Picchu, and which of Jacada’s local guides they’ll strike up an immediate friendship with. Most of all, as people who are so passionate about the places they take their clients to and the experiences they want them to enjoy and share, it’s then their imagination, local connections, know-how and taking care of every tiny detail that will assure just that.

About Jacada Travel:

Jacada Travel is the go-to expert in personalized private-guided luxury travel to Latin America and Africa. Founded in 2008 by Alex Malcolm, Jacada Travel offers unique and inspired itineraries for travelers seeking a truly personal travel experience with discreet, attentive service from start to finish. Jacada’s expert travel designers can offer clients a one-of-a-kind insider’s guide to South America and Africa – from quaint vineyard hotel stays in Mendoza, Amazon tribe encounters in Peru, and archaeologist guided private tours of the Makgadikgadi Pans in Botswana, to secluded beachfront villa stays on the private islands of Mozambique, Jacada helps travelers make the most of their time away.

For more information on Jacada Travel and to browse some sample itineraries, all customizable to fit a traveler’s needs, please visit:


Chris "MUG5" Maguire is a multimedia futurist that specializes in all things multimedia. From Record Production to Film Making Chris has worked with hi-end clients the world over. Chris is the Editor in Chief of both &