Chic Traveler:  Alexandra Youdeem

Occupation: Founder, The Local Foreigner

Hometown: New York

A dual French and American citizen born in New York and educated in France and the UK, Alexandra has relished every opportunity to explore and engage with worlds different from her own.  Recognizing the need for a higher degree of personalization and a more empathetic approach to trip curation, Alexandra launched The Local Foreigner, a one-stop shop for inspiration, insider insight, and comprehensive planning.

Dream destination?

Where the sky and earth merge, the world’s largest mirror, the Uyuni Salt Flats in Bolivia.

What’s on your plane play list?

I am a huge fan of French new wave cinema so I try to download at least one new movie on my iPad before each flight.

Your guilty pleasure while traveling?

Getting at least one deep tissue massage.

Is there a particular destination that inspires your creativity?  

Train rides really arouse my imagination.  Staring out onto rapidly changing landscapes gives me a lot of peace and perspective.

What’s the most stylish city/locale you’ve visited?  Anywhere in particular where the fashion/beauty/women’s personal style really blew you away?

Though to many it may sound cliché- Paris will always stand out as the most stylish city in the world.  Women pull off tomboy chic so well it’s sexy!

If you were introducing a world traveling friend to SJ for the first time, what’s the first piece you’d recommend they buy?

The Jumbo Zip Cosmetic – it fits way more than you think.  I use it to carry all sorts of things my iPad, chargers, wallet, passport… I love it!Alexandra-Youdeem-3


Next on your Stephanie Johnson wish list?

The ML Traveler in Mumbai Turquoise.

Favorite travel ritual or souvenir: (Do you always visit a local book shop?  Hunt down the best cappuccino?  Pick up a tree ornament depicting your destination?)

I always try and check out the modern art museum, if there is one – I find it’s the best and fastest way to gain exposure to local pop culture.

Your personal travel style: (Do you like a luxury resort?  A private hideaway?  Do you prefer to lie on the beach?  Explore the countryside?)

I love unique properties – exploring a new destination can be so much more fun if you stay somewhere that has its own story or history.

The one thing that you cannot leave home without?

My 1978 Canon A-1 camera.  It was a gift from my uncle and it takes the most incredible shots.

Your happy place / Favorite travel destination?

That’s like picking your favorite child – but if I had to pick, I would have to say Istanbul, Tokyo, and Copenhagen are among my top 10 favorite cities.

Favorite pre-travel or travel-friendly beauty routine?

Getting in a workout, preferably Rique’s Soulcycle class the morning I fly out.

First drink in the air:  H2O, champagne or OJ?

Champagne 🙂

Go-to luggage brand?

Tumi all the way!  Knowing that each bag has a GPS tracker gives me peace of mind when checking luggage.


Checked bag or carry-on?

Carry-on all the way, unless I am traveling for 2 weeks +

On your reading list?

1984 by George Orwell.

Plane food or bring your own?

Bring my own – I get food anxiety, I’m always afraid I’ll be starving on the plane and a bag of peanuts just won’t do.

Window or aisle?


How often do you fly?

Enough to make people think I don’t actually live in NY.

Go-to flying ‘uniform?’

Sweats & a blowout are a must!