Welcome to In Real Life, a series in which we take a deep dive into the lives our favourite personalities. In our casual conversation, we challenge them with a course of rapid fire (honest, candid and personal) questions to get to know their true selves.
As founder of Compare Retreats, a Hong Kong-based luxury wellness travel booking portal and online platform, Dervla Louli knows a thing or two about missing the jetset life right now. The former digital media editor is also a trained yoga instructor whose wellness journey has taken her to exotic locations all over the world. We talk post-Covid travel, what keeps her motivated and all important down time.
What travel destinations are you missing the most and why?
Ireland as it’s my second home and my family are there, the Maldives as I’m dreaming of an island escape in the middle of nowhere, and Clinique La Prairie in Switzerland as I’m craving an intense medical spa wellness retreat.
What’s on your playlist right now?
My friend made our group a Spotify playlist with uplifting old school tracks. Pure Shores by All Saints and Mmmm Bop by Hanson are just a few songs that make me smile.
The travel industry has been thrown into crisis, when do you see recovery?
Domestic travel will recover first, it already is in Hong Kong where staycations are becoming increasingly popular. Europe is already opening up and there’s talks of travel bubbles between certain countries. I don’t know if we’ll ever return to previous intense travel rates but perhaps a more considered approach will be better for humans and the environment.
What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
Just keep swimming… from Lori Granito. Also, build your own dreams, or someone else will hire you to build theirs.
What’s the first job you’ve ever had?
A wedding dress model.
What was the last gift you gave someone?
Flowers from BYDEAU.
What would your perfect Sunday be like?
A day at the beach with my dogs, husband and brother.
What’s the best compliment you’ve ever received?
That I’m very thoughtful.
If you could trade places with anyone for a day, who would you choose?
Usain Bolt, I’d love to know what it feels like to run that fast.
Tell us something that not many people know about you?
I was named after Dervla Murphy, a famous Irish travel writer who cycled through India on a bicycle.
What sparks your creative mind?
What’s been your career highlight so far?
Reaching my publishing career goals and launching my dream business before I turned 30.
How do you like to end your day?
By telling my rescue dog Clive that he’s the most handsome dog in Hong Kong and writing in my five minute journal.