Anyone who has met me knows two things: I am a dedicated, life-long travel junkie — and I am a borderline-annoying pro-Vegas cheerleader. So imagine my excitement when I discovered a born-in-Sin-City (wait for it) travel agency! And it is one of the fastest-growing luxury travel companies in the US. The founders of Scarlett Hospitality met while attending the University of Nevada Las Vegas during their upper division courses in hotel management. Before they graduated in 2007 and 2008, this go-getter group got their feet wet working at luxury hotels on the Strip such as Caesars Palace, Mandalay Bay, and Wynn. Vegas is nothing if not over-the-top — I couldn’t think of a better education for planning luxury vacations all over the world. And this group has the passion: Founder/CEO Julius Scarlett and Director of Business Development Jessica Black actually ended up leaving their UNLV graduation early to whisk off to Europe for two weeks. These are my kind of people! Their start-up evolved into a full-service travel agency, which books and tailors trips from hotel to dining to entertainment, as well as a hospitality consulting firm that performs customer Quality Analyses for clients such as Mandarin Oriental.
I hope you enjoy getting to know Scarlett Hospitality as much as I did!
How did Scarlett Hospitality Group get started?
Jessica Black: Scarlett Hospitality got started in 2009; we were three UNLV graduates who wanted to take luxury travel to the next step. We wanted to create a real “experience” for people who travel, not just provide a hotel and then let them figure it out. And we wanted to send our clients to places we would go to ourselves, places we have stayed in, and that we loved.
Does that mean you’ve stayed in every hotel that you recommend? Scrolling through your top picks, I found many of my favorites, including Sanctuary in Scottsdale, Amangiri in Utah, and Bardessono in Napa.
JB: Yes, we have stayed in every single hotel in our collection. We take great pride in recommending these hotels, and we want to be sure we are making a reliable recommendation. We want our clients to trust our judgement, and in doing so, we have stayed in and rated every hotel we offer experiences for. We all have a true passion for travel, so it’s not all that bad!
Why did you choose Las Vegas as your first location?
JB: All three of us business founders were once Las Vegas residents, and over the many years we lived there, we saw so many people in and out of the city — even during the economy crash, Las Vegas kept a very lively tourism industry. We wanted every single one of those people to really experience Las Vegas as a high-end, luxury destination, to have amazing experiences and world-class cuisine.
What is your favorite hotel in Las Vegas to send clients and why?
JB: We have all worked at luxury hotels on the Strip, so we have seen the good, the bad, and the ugly. Our favorite Las Vegas hotels are Wynn and Cosmo. Our clients always have great experiences there and always take away amazing memories.
Where are your offices located?
JB: We have an office in Las Vegas, of course, as well as Beverly Hills. If you can’t find us in the office, it is because we are traveling and getting to know new hotels. But we can get in touch with you from anywhere else in the world.
Where did you get the name Scarlett Hospitality?
JB: Our CEO, Julius Scarlett, came up with the idea of using his last name. Scarlett to us means luxury, amazing experiences, cashmere… It means being able to enjoy the finer things in life.
What makes Scarlett Hospitality different than other online travel agencies?
JB: Scarlett Hospitality Group bases all of our hotel options on our personal luxury experiences at each of the properties. We take great pride in creating a custom experience that we know you will love. We have a ‘custom travel concierge’ that is available free of charge to plan your entire vacation. We will make sure you come home and have memories of the absolute best experiences.
What are you working on in 2013?
JB: We have already started to roll out our newest expansion, and are getting into the Canada and Mexico luxury markets: We have recently added hotels to our collection from Vancouver to Riviera Maya. We will start to add Europe in the fall.
Visit Scarlett Hospitality today. Just scrolling through their exquisite collection will stir up wanderlust!
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