As a presenter of A Place In The Sun – among many other shows – where would you most like to live in the world?
I love being back in London where I was born and bred. It gives me a chance to catch up with family and friends, and even my husband!! I do feel like Italy is my “spiritual home” but I’m not planning to move out there yet – maybe when I retire!
As someone who travels a lot, what do you like most about coming home?
Sleeping in my own bed is unbeatable. When I’m at home it usually means I will have more time to spend with my family. Sometimes my hubby and I are like ships that pass in the night. I’ve just got back from three weeks away and we had one day together, now he is away for a week.
Are you a country person or a town person, and why?
I’m definitely a town person. I was born and raised in London and whilst I like the peace and quiet of the country for a couple of days, I start to get restless after that. I like hustle and bustle, I like things to happen quickly and efficiently, I like to have a good phone and data signal!
How would you describe your own personal style when it comes to the decor of your home?
I’ve recently moved into a lovely 1930’s house, from a very modern home so we are in the process of finding our new style that is in keeping with the period of the building. We have a lot of work to do in the house so interiors haven’t yet been our priority, but I want to maintain some of the character whilst making it suited to modern life. I’d say contemporary classic is how I see it coming together.
What are your favourite things at home – do you bring treasured souvenirs back from your travels?
I don’t often bring back souvenirs from my travels, as there’s not much space in my luggage! However I did bring back a fantastic Marimba for my daughter from Canada. The guy who made it had only sold 10 and so Joy is the only child in the world outside of Canada to have one of his specially made instruments. She loves it and spends ages bashing it with the mallets.
She also has a beautiful antique trunk for her toys which is painted with penguins which I adore.
I have a treasured portrait of our dog Shadow who we lost last year, by artist Emily Burrowes, which captures his personality so perfectly.
What are your favourite holiday destinations?
We had a wonderful holiday in Vancouver this year, visiting my best friend. It was a beach, mountain and city break combined! My other favourites are St. Vincent in the Caribbean for winter sun, Chamonix in France for snow, Italy for food!
For 2016 I haven’t got any plans as yet, but when you work abroad all the time, coming home feels like a holiday!
What would be your ideal Christmas Day?
Since I was a little girl, we’d open the presents in our stocking in the morning, then have lunch, then open the rest later on. It means you have something left to look forward to for the rest of the day, which we still do now.
My ideal Christmas would involve someone else doing the cooking!
Maybe caterers to make an amazing vegan Christmas lunch, and clear everything up at the end. I’d be with my whole family, we’d have a nice walk with the dogs whilst food was being prepared, then presents in the evening, and games.
Are you keen on Christmas decorations? If so, what’s your preference?
I like simple but abundant decorations. There’s nothing worse than a sparsely decorated tree that looks like Scrooge himself has decorated it! I like to have colour themes like gold or silver and stick to that and tinsel is definitely not part of my vision!