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(2013 - Spring Issue)


Design has no borders, nor does Candice Olson’s life.

She frequently travels across North America and beyond as television host of Candice Tells All on the W Network in Canada and HGTV in the United States.

She may wear makeup on television however acting like a diva is definitely not part of her personality. Despite her striking beauty and poised look, Olson radiates a warm and approachable presence on and off camera. Feeling like a pinball at times, Olson navigates her daily roles as TV designer host, bestselling author, design columnist for 400-plus North American newspapers, and business owner of numerous home furnishing product lines. Her proudest and most important roles though are those of wife and mother of two. Escapes from work pressures are treasured.

When Olson was young vacations meant camping with family—there was no staying in luxury hotels then. In her teens, Olson put her six-foot body to good use as a volleyball player on Canada’s national volleyball feeder team and travelled to tournaments in Japan, France and Italy. Today the fit Olson cherishes any free time in the winter by taking family ski trips to the Alps or Rockies. When she does travel and stays in hotels Olson finds it hard to take her designer hat off.

What catches your eye at hotels?

I love hotels, a beautifully designed hotel. People always talk to me about how they would love their home to feel like a boutique hotel. What creates that feeling? Is it pattern, colour, texture, lighting, furniture, sheets? I am always picking up little details and looking at them. For some reason I seem to uber-analyze hotel bathrooms!

What’s your favourite hotel?

The (Hôtel de) Crillon in Paris for sure. It’s old-world elegance. My husband, Jurij, and I sat in the piano bar there one night and just observed people coming and going. We had cognac from the 18th century. It was just magical. 

What don’t you like about travelling?

I am a horrible flyer. I have size 11 feet and they swell on any flight over five hours. I don’t recover quickly. So for me to go to Australia I would have to make it a long three-month trip. To do something in two weeks would just drive me insane. 

Is it all glamour when you travel?

I travel a lot for work to the Carolinas because that’s where the furniture business is. And you know there aren’t really high-end hotels there. My husband thinks when I travel for business I’m living in the lap of luxury. On my last trip there I woke up in the morning and I snapped a picture of the first thing I saw—a cockroach crawling up the wall!

Do you have a favourite souvenir?

It’s this taxidermy character, which is kind of a weird thing. It’s a groundhog with a raccoon tail and small antlers. It’s almost like a jackalope of Banff. I got it in Innsbruck, Austria. I do have a little thing for taxidermy, which dates back to my grandfather who was a trapper in Manitoba’s Whiteshell area.

What’s on the travel horizon?

When we have a little more time, I promised my kids a safari or something similar where we can be the nature-loving family we are. I would love to experience more of that outside of North America—either the Galapagos Islands or the kids keep talking about an African safari.

Best Western
San Antonio
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