My 5 Travel Essentials: Travel Channel Host Anthony Melchiorri
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Anthony Melchiorri knows hotels. The one-time night manager of New York's Plaza Hotel runs his own hospitality consultant service, has four hotel projects in the pipeline and is in the midst of filming the eighth season of his Travel Channel show, Hotel Impossible.
Two spin-offs are also in the works: Hotel Showdown, where four hotel managers or owners visit each other's properties and rate them a la TLC's Four Weddings. The other is Five Star Secrets, in which Melchiorri take viewers behind the scenes at some of the world's best hotels.
"The economy was in bad shape when I first conceived Hotel Impossible; hotels were [in trouble]. Now it's time to show America not only how to turn around a hotel, but also what goes into a great one." Some locations include Hawaii, New York, Las Vegas and Los Cabos, where Melchiorri will reveal the secrets of luxury mainstay One & Only Palmilla, the only property he can currently confirm will appear on the show.
A busy shooting schedule means Melchiorri travels a lot. Based in New York about 15 minutes from JFK, he's in and out of Kennedy on a weekly basis. "Delta is my airline; I love Delta but even though I have hundreds of thousands of Delta SkyMiles, I still don't get into their lounges unless I have my Amex Platinum," he said. "That's why I carry that card everywhere. Amex has a great marketing campaign, 'Don't leave home without it,' and I don't."
When he's on the road, these are the other essentials Melchiorri never leaves home without.
1. My Tumi Alpha Deluxe Wheeled Leather Briefcase
"My Tumi luggage almost feels like an extension of me and is reflective of my own style. It's literally a rolling office. It holds a ridiculous amount of items, has extremely tough zippers and hasn't broken yet despite the bad things I do to it. I don't like checking luggage at all, so I squeeze it everywhere that can be squeezed. I got it about five years ago as a Christmas present from my wife, probably around when we first started filming the show. It was definitely something I wanted; I showed it to her, like, I don't want anything else, get me this. It's been all over the world with me."
2. Würkin Stiffs Magnetic Collar Stays
"I can't really overemphasize these stays — I realized how important they were the other day when I had a little bit of a breakdown when I couldn't find them! I'm usually seen in ties and custom suits, but when the tie comes off, I prefer not to have my collar flapping around in the wind or generally looking disheveled. These stays keep things from looking unruly and provide a clean look with little hassle."
3. Burt's Bees Hand Salve
"No matter where I am, the weather ranges from sunny to blisteringly cold to dry heat. This product has a great scent and keeps my hands from cracking or feeling dry and damaged."
4. Smart Water
"When people travel, they need different things that are familiar. I like to avoid caffeine kicks and really try to take care of myself — hydration is a key component to that. Whether I'm on location, in the air or relaxing at home, I usually have a bottle of Smart Water close by."
5. Industry News Resources
"I have access to great apps on my phone, but there's something distinct about being able to flip through [actual] pages to read an article or underline something that catches my attention. I usually carry a Lodging Magazine, Travel + Leisure and either Time or People with me. When it comes to news and world events, my go-to is The New York Times."
What are five things you never travel without? Let us know in the comments, below.