boutique luxury travel advisory
We work with professionals, executives, and entrepreneurs seeking to experience the uniqueness of our world without sacrificing service or luxury. Our advisory isn’t for everyone but is perfect for travelers who value exquisite service over barebones prices, prefer unique private experiences to crowded tours, and want a skilled partner on their planning team instead of spending days and weeks on their own travel research.
Owner & Founder
I founded Barclay & Company Travel after a successful career as a management consult at McKinsey & Company and as an Innovation, Strategy and Finance executive at PepsiCo.
Why leave that career behind and start a travel business? I love to explore the world! One aspect of my personal travel I have always enjoyed is the process of planning incredible experiences. Whether couple’s getaways for my wife and me, or family trips to share the world with my children, half the joy I receive from my travel adventures is weighing the multitude of options and pulling together a trip that’s uniquely suited for our tastes, interests and travel desires. For many years I daydreamed about retiring from my corporate career but staying active by pursuing my passion and helping others plan their leisure travels (and traveling a lot more myself).
When COVID-19 hit, I took a sabbatical from the corporate world to focus on my family. While evaluating my post-sabbatical career options, I kept returning to the idea of starting a travel business.
I understand the value of partnering with experienced professionals (doctors, lawyers, accountants, general contractors, etc.) because these experts bring to the table skills, knowledge, and resources I don’t have. I am also no stranger to luxury travel advisors having used several over the years. However, none were able to provide the level of service and customization I desired. Some advisors only specialized in certain types of travel and couldn’t meet the breadth of my leisure travel needs. Some weren’t adept at working with busy Type A personalities and didn’t clearly articulate timing and deliverables, leaving me wondering at next steps and proactively requesting status updates. And some were very transactional, delivering the desired trip planning but never following up to learn about my recent travel experience. These advisors weren’t interested in building a mutual beneficial relationship based on ongoing familiarity with my unique travel needs, interests and preferences. I knew I could do better.
I understand what my clients want in their leisure travel, because I’ve been in their shoes. I know how precious time away from the daily grind can be, how unique experiences provide a welcome escape from daily life, and how immersing oneself in a travel experience can recharge and reinvigorate the soul. I also understand how hard it is to plan that perfect trip, from finding the right accommodations and travel suppliers to simply freeing up the time required to plan a memorable vacation.
My role is to be the trusted partner for my clients, to listen carefully to their vision and help them design and execute memorable trips. I know I have succeeded when my clients’ views of travel planning morphs from a dreaded requirement to an enjoyable aspect of any getaway.
Having a strong travel network is critical to delivering exceptional luxury travel experiences. This is why I have partnered with Brownell & Virtuoso to ensure I have the appropriate resources, connections, and on-the-ground luxury partners around the world to deliver the travel experiences my clients desire.
Leveraging the skillset I developed from my years in management consulting and consumer research, and my personal experience with luxury travel, I strive to deliver travel planning with professionalism and creativity that allows my clients to focus on relaxing, re-energizing, and connecting with the new places they visit.
I have traveled to 23 countries and five continents, with many more on my bucket list. In addition to my passion for travel, I have a BA from the University of Pennsylvania and an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. I live in Chicago with my wife and 3 children…when we are not off on our next travel adventure.