Travel destinations

Simone Ashley of ‘Bridgerton’ shares her favorite travel destinations

How she ended up in business class at age eight:

Oh my god, this is actually a really good story. My mom and I were traveling together in California and we were on a coach and I think it was a really long trip. We had a layover somewhere, maybe Dallas or something and then flew to California, but we were checking in and I don’t know – the guy just upgraded us. We didn’t persuade him or anything! He was just very nice and upgraded us to business class. I got served Ben and Jerry’s! I had scallops for the first time. I was eight, so scallops were a big deal for me. It was really fun.

His pet peeve of the trip:

People not being team players. I understand, everyone is alone, you only mind your own business. But we all get on the same plane. Give space, be patient. Just be spatially aware! I know airports can be stressful. Be kind to each other.

The place she could go a million times and never get tired of it:

Italy, especially in spring-summer. The food, oh my. When I went there in February, I said to myself: “It’s going to be a food and wine trip, and that’s it. I just ate tortellini all day, every day. Tortellini for breakfast. I actually had tortellini for dessert at a restaurant, which was crazy. Because the Italians – or [at least,] this restaurant – said you should leave the dinner table with cheese in your mouth, with the taste of cheese in your mouth. So after we had tiramisu, they gave us tortellini, and I was like, “I’m not complaining.” It was awesome.

The area of ​​the UK she thinks more people should see:

Wales is beautiful. We filmed Sex education in Cardiff and Newport. I went to see friends while we were filming in North Wales and it was a long drive – winding roads, hills, forests. It’s so untouched and it’s so green and nourished and rich and beautiful. And I’m a sun baby. I generally like the summer sun. But there’s something about Wales, the cold and the rain – that’s part of the experience, then you run away to a little pub and sit by the fire and eat good food. Wales has a place in my heart.

Coolest hotel she’s ever stayed in:

I wish I could say something a little more holey, very understated, a place no one has ever been to, but I stayed at the Four Seasons in Athens and it was pretty amazing. I slept like a baby. It was just beautiful views. The beach was amazing.

Why she tells everyone to visit Athens:

I think it’s fabulous! Transportation is really cool there, food. I’m probably going to get a lot of weird comments for saying this, but I’ve had amazing sushi there – I guess it’s because the fish is so fresh from the Mediterranean. I had amazing and authentic Greek food. It is a lively and populated city. Yeah, I’m waving the Athens flag! I support people who are going to visit Athens. The culture is amazing. I was there for a minute and I was exhausted and my friend dragged me around, like, ‘While you’re in Athens, you gotta see the ruins and the buildings and all the historical stuff.’ I’m glad he did, because I got to see some amazing stuff. I loved Hercules grow!

The hotel amenities that are close to his heart:

A good sauna. I am a huge sauna fan. I’m usually in hotels now for work, so I wear makeup a lot. I love sitting in a sauna for two hours and working up a sweat from the work week I’ve just been through, then taking a nice little cold shower. When a hotel has a good little spa, I’m really interested. I [also] always look at the room service menu. I’ll be on the plane looking at the menu and I’ll be like, “I want this.” I want that.’ It’s luxurious. Going to work and staying in a nice hotel, I am well aware that this is a luxury and I am very grateful for it. So I try not to be picky. As long as I have good food, clean sheets, a nice bathrobe, here’s the list! – a nice view, and a good spa, so I’m happy.