If you get Leah started talking about travel she’s likely never to stop. This Texan has as many stories as she does shoes.
Leah found her stride as a travel writer in 2011 when she launched her little corner of the World Wide Web. While traveling through five continents and countless countries, Leah discovered her inner Francophile. And like so many American writers of the past, she packed her bags and moved to Paris, where she’s been living since 2015.
Though, Leah’s life hasn’t been all Bourgogne and baguettes. After graduating from university, this fifth-generation Texan spent a decade as a high school English teacher and basketball coach. Successful in Shakespeare and sport, Leah was a finalist for Teacher of the Year and coached two All-Americans, including a McDonald’s John Wooden National Player of the Year. A lifelong career in education wasn’t in Leah’s cards. She put down the red pen and followed her passion for basketball all the way to the NBA, where she worked in sales and marketing.
For her next career move, Leah became a technical writer for a Fortune 200 company. Imprisoned in a cubicle, she wrote software controls manuals for offshore oil rigs. Bored to tears and craving an outlet for creativity, she tried her hand at travel writing by starting LeahTravels.com. It turns out that she was pretty good, so Leah turned into a full-time travel writer. The rest, as they say, is history.
Sunrise in Lanai, Hawaii at Puu Pehe, near Four Seasons Manele Bay
Playing with stingrays at a farm on the island of Langkawi in Malaysia
Sunset in Florence, Italy on the steps of Piazzale Michelangelo
Leah’s parlayed the success of LeahTravels.com into various contributor and editor roles. She is currently a Travel Expert for USA Today 10Best, Staff Writer and Houston City Editor for The Daily Meal, Contributor for France Today, Correspondent for Forbes Travel Guide, Contributor for Bonjour Paris, Contributor for Four Seasons Magazine, Editor-at-Large for Luxe Beat Magazine, as well as Editor for the Paris Perfect, London Perfect, and Italy Perfect blogs. Leah also consults with brands regarding social media strategy and manages the social media accounts for Paris, London, and Italy Perfect, as well as Secret Journeys.
As a travel and wine ambassador for Atout France USA, Leah’s passion is discovering France’s regional foods, wines, histories, and cultures. She’s collaborated with 20+ French tourism boards and worked on multiple marketing campaigns for Atout France, including Travel Weekly’s 2015 Gold Magellan Award for Destination Marketing. Conversely, Leah also relishes uncovering American history in France.
Not just a writer, Leah’s career has morphed to include photography, social media and hosting. She’s been recognized by Southern Living magazine as a ‘Blogger you should be Following’ and Yahoo! Travel as an ‘Instagram Travel Photographer to Follow’. Leah also co-founded ALLEZ Entertainment along with two veteran Hollywood producers. ALLEZ is a video-focused project that focuses on France, not only in the Hexagon, but the French influences around the world. The first original series is Finding France: Los Angeles.
In 2017, Leah was featured in a CNN International campaign seen in Europe, the Middle East and Africa. She has also won a month in Europe, been interviewed by BBC five times, chosen as a finalist for Best Travel Writing, and named a top 15 travel blog for 2013. As an blogger/influencer, she’s worked with brands such as Four Seasons, Expedia, MINI and Rail Europe and tourism boards like Austria, Belgium and Japan. Leah’s also an international Paris Priceless City Influencer for Mastercard.
Cigar and Cognac at Château de Chanteloup, the estate of Martell Cognac
Exploring the vast, rugged, and beautiful deserts of Jordan, near the Dead Sea
A view of the Mediterranean Sea and port from Castle Hill in Nice, France
Finding it difficult to sit still too long, Leah lives by the motto, “Life’s too short to live with a ‘someday’ mentality.” Though primarily a luxury travel and food writer, Leah isn’t afraid to cruise in a boat through a crocodile-infested river or indulge in Asian hawker stand food, as long as her slippers are set out during turndown service. As an admitted airport lounge aficionado, miles hoarder and hotel junkie, Leah is invigorated by all-things travel. Even the pesky TSA security checks and long customs lines don’t bother Leah too much. After all, the journey is just as important as the destination.
Leah longs to live life without regrets, which was motivated by her mother’s death from cancer. She now pursues travel with an all-consuming sense of urgency. She wants to experience all the world has to offer, though Leah has an abnormal obsession with Europe. She thinks New Zealand is the most beautiful place on earth and is determined to set foot in Africa before the end of
2014 2015 2016.
Through her love of writing, Leah hopes to inspire others to step out of their comfort zones and try something new. “New” doesn’t have to mean flying across the world and taking a boat just to get to some secret, untouched island. No, “new” could be being a tourist in one’s hometown; it doesn’t matter.
Bird’s eye view of the Bastille Day Military Parade from a suite at Fouquet’s Barrière
An after-hours private tour of Palais Garnier led to the rooftop of the famous opera
The golden hour takes on a new meaning at the doors of the Petit Palais.
In addition, Leah is also is a marketing consultant, assisting in strategy, content creation and implementation for brands and destinations working in new media.
After three years of living in Paris, she signed on for another four years with the renewal of her Passeport Talent visa. No, she’s not fluent in French. Frankly, not even close! When Leah’s not busy marking items off of her 100+ item to-do list and finding France, she’s longing for Tex-Mex and BBQ in Houston and Austin.
If you’re interested in learning more about Leah’s professional services, see her “Work with Leah” page.
Want to know know more about why Leah travels and the purpose behind the creation of this site? Check out her very first post, “Why I Travel: A Dedication”.