Sherita Rankins is building a brand and lifting women up along the way. The lifestyle blogger is a big advocate of women carving their own path. And for Rankins, world travel is a huge part of her own journey. This year, she took her love of travel and creativity to new heights, entering and winning IHG Hotels & Resorts’ EPIC giveaway, which gifted her with 365 days’ worth of hotel rooms around the world and lifetime IHG Rewards Spire Elite status.
Get to know Sherita and what her plans are for this win of a lifetime!
What made you want to enter IHG’s Epic Vacation giveaway?
I’m a true travel fanatic. I’m always looking for travel deals online even if I don’t have any trips planned. So, it was my husband who actually shared this giveaway with me. He said this is perfect and right up my alley. And when I saw what it was it just seemed like the chance of a lifetime. I mean, who gives away 365 days of hotel stays?!
What was the inspiration behind your video submissions?
The first video I shot – that was me saying, let me show you how pitiful I am right now. The opening scene summed up 2020 – and to be honest I still live in that robe. I thought – how I can get myself back into a travel mode and show IHG how much I want this!
After I posted it, I saw that people were submitting multiple videos. With the second one, I thought – I need to really create something here. What if I made a video taking my “robe life” into what this vacation would look like? I was inspired by Cinderella – doing all the work around the house and decided that a pool transition would really make this video stand out. My husband was the guinea pig and the night before, he kept falling into the pool so we could get that transition just right. By the time I did it the next day, I was able to use the very first take!
What IHG hotels and destinations are you most excited to visit?
Oh my god – so many! This is a loaded question, there are so many options I started a spread sheet. I want to go to Dubai, to the Maldives, South America, the new InterContinental in Rome, and the Kimpton Seafire in the Cayman Islands looks amazing. I just found a property in South Africa that does safaris, I’m trying to hit as many places as possible.
What do you hope to learn and share from this experience?
My whole brand is about helping women live their best lives. I approach life in a holistic way, and I hope my travel inspires others to go out and try whatever they have always wanted to do. People often tell me that they live vicariously through me, and they don’t have to! You can do this – I want women to feel empowered when I share my experiences and know that it’s okay to do something for of themselves.
For myself, every trip leaves me a little more open, a little more empathetic. Traveling really does open minds and hearts.
Who will you take with you on some of your trips to IHG properties?
My husband is the quintessential travel partner, and he is my photographer and is always up for an adventure. My mom and I love to take spa trips, so one of those will be planned.
My dear friends who I know haven’t had a chance to travel – I’m definitely going to reach out to them for some girls’ trips.
What are some things you have learned from your travels?
When I travel, I think about how I can immerse myself in the culture as much as I can while still being respectful. I try to have an open mind and I’ve found that no matter where you are, you can find ways to connect with people. One thing for me is that I try to use the native language as much as possible even if I can’t speak a lot of it. I’ll learn a few phrases such as good morning, please, thank you and you’re welcome. When you can at least say thank you, it goes a long way, and it shows respect.
What do you love about hotels?
Oh man – everything. The welcoming feeling, a suite with a sunken bath, and crisp sheets. I find when I check into a hotel it can be a magical experience and getting a hotel upgrade is the icing on the cake. A great hotel allows you to rest and recharge, so you can wake up excited to experience your destination and the adventures that await you.
Name a few things you absolutely can’t travel without.
Silk Eye Mask. I wear it on planes and at hotels while sleeping.
DSLR camera and laptop
Bug spray + cortisone
Skincare + makeup is a must
How can people follow your journey?
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About IHG Hotels & Resorts
IHG Hotels & Resorts is a global organisation with a broad portfolio of hotel brands, including Six Senses Hotels Resorts Spas, Regent Hotels & Resorts, InterContinental® Hotels & Resorts, Kimpton® Hotels & Restaurants, Hotel Indigo®, EVEN Hotels ®, HUALUXE® Hotels and Resorts, Crowne Plaza® Hotels & Resorts, voco™, Holiday Inn® Hotels & Resorts, Holiday Inn Express®, Holiday Inn Club Vacations®, avid™ hotels, Staybridge Suites®, Atwell Suites™ and Candlewood Suites®.
IHG franchises, leases, manages or owns nearly 5,800 hotels and approximately 865,000 guest rooms in more than 100 countries, with over 1,900 hotels in its development pipeline. IHG also manages IHG® Rewards Club, our global loyalty programme, which has more than 100 million enrolled members.
InterContinental Hotels Group PLC is the Group’s holding company and is incorporated in Great Britain and registered in England and Wales. More than 400,000 people work across IHG’s hotels and corporate offices globally.
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