At Lux Voyage, Virgi Schiffino Kennedy Plans the Ultimate Bespoke Vacations Across the Globe
If your New Year’s resolution is to travel more, Virgi Schiffino Kennedy and her team are available to curate the perfect trip for you.
The Dominicana was raised around check-in desks and luggage carts in her family of hoteliers. After a 12-year career as an international attorney in New York and Washington, D.C., she realized she had to go back to her roots in hospitality.
And so began Lux Voyage, a private and luxury travel concierge and consultancy that plans extravagant trips across the globe. They get to know their clients to tailor their travels to their interests, making it a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Meanwhile, their clients never have to lift a finger along the way. For example, they’ve organized a weekend birthday trip to Los Angeles for an astronomy lover, complete with exclusive observatory visits and nighttime stargazing.
Their flawlessly planned trips led to Schiffino Kennedy being named one of Condé Nast Traveler’s Top Travel Specialists for 2023.
“The idea didn’t exactly pop into my head one day,” Schiffino Kennedy tells FIERCE in an interview. “Instead, I walked into it through a lot of trial and error in searching for what I was meant to be doing with my life. Once I fell upon it, I knew I was on the path that I needed to be on.”
She tells us more about what led to the start of Lux Voyage, how she did it without travel industry experience, and why she’s grateful to her Latino community.
She dove into trip organizing because other people believed in her
After her career as a practicing attorney made her feel unfulfilled and unhappy, she took matters into her own hands to change that. She started trying out different side gigs, including starting a bespoke food tour company.
“I would take people on 4-hour-long walking tours to my favorite food shops and restaurants in the city,” Schiffino Kennedy recalls. “Over time, some of these clients started asking me to arrange trips to Europe and other destinations.”
Although these requests surprised her, she was game for it. After all, she had already been to some of the places her clients were jetting off to. She got in touch with her network of contacts overseas who weren’t in the travel industry. From there, she successfully organized her first trips.
“My clients were awed and transformed with each trip, and once I tasted the immense satisfaction of having a part in these memories, I was hooked,” said Schiffino Kennedy.
Schiffino Kennedy eventually discovered that aiding others to create lasting memories was her calling.
Support helped Schiffino Kennedy pull it all together
The trips Schiffino Kennedy was organizing were over-the-top and logistically intricate. She’s secured excursions like after-hours museum visits to security details for her clients.
Incredibly enough, she was able to do it as an outsider in the travel industry.
Schiffino Kennedy joined forces with her lifelong friend, Lisa Malla, as she solidified her new project. Aside from her personal love of travel, Malla didn’t have experience. However, they were both able to lean on each other for support.
“We made a lot of mistakes,” said Schiffino Kennedy. “Thankfully, many of them were behind the scenes, a few of them, not so much, but we learned from them and pulled through.”
Why she’s grateful to her Latino community
Today, Lux Voyage operates with a team of Latinas designing grand vacations. As they make headway in this industry, Schiffino Kennedy owes it to Latinos being entrepreneurs by nature. “We have grit, we do what it takes, and we get s*** done,” she said.
Our community-orientedness is also something she appreciates deeply. Latinos have spread the word about Lux Voyage to their friends and families, and it helped the company grow.
Her fearlessness while figuring out her next move after her career in law is also a trait seen in Latinos. She wants new Latina entrepreneurs to know that it’s okay to be afraid when taking a leap into the unknown but not to be paralyzed by fear.
“Don’t be afraid to knock on doors, ask questions, try something new, and even fail,” she said.
She also recommends following your intuition and reminding yourself that you belong.
“Lead and move forward with authenticity,” said Schiffino Kennedy. “When you do, everything falls into place.”