Arguably the sexiest man on Instagram, 31-year-old Jeremy Jauncey founded Beautiful Destinations, a social media and technology agency. With a little over 6 million followers, Beautiful Destinations is all about creating a digital space that’s more accessible and relatable to travelers. In partnership with the Department of Tourism, Jeremy—together with some of Beautiful Destinations’ team members—toured around the Philippines, capturing some of our most pristine beaches and gorgeous views.
Talk about the moment you decided to quit your full-time job, sell your shares, and start Beautiful Destinations.
I've always been an entrepreneur so there was never really a moment when I saw it as quitting a full-time job. I've always been my own boss and had my own businesses, but Beautiful Destinations started as a passion project to celebrate the beauty of the world, through the lens of real travelers, not a company. With a Colombian mother and a father who’s a professional photographer, travel and beautiful images have always been in my blood, so BD was something that allowed me to combine those passions.
What were you most worried about? What were the challenges of getting it off the ground?
Maybe I have too positive an outlook on things but honestly, I didn't have any worries about starting BD. It just felt right from the beginning. Social media was exploding, people have always loved to travel and share their experiences with one another, and by combining the two, I was sure we'd make something work. As for challenges though—so many! Hiring good talent is always hard, as is generating revenues in the early stages. Clarifying the business model has probably been the hardest thing in getting us up and running.
We know that you’ve expanded: Beautiful Hotels, Beautiful Apparel, Beautiful Cuisines, Beautiful Menswear, Beautiful Matters–How do you decide what’s next? What are some other branches you’re looking into?
The common theme in all our accounts is celebrating the things people like to do in life, so natural extensions into health and music are areas we're exploring—not as new accounts but definitely as themes we introduce into our existing accounts. I'm a very big advocate for health and fitness and I want our brand to be about a positive, healthy lifestyle, so you can expect to see more of that. With music, we're looking at a number of collaborations that will create Beautiful Destination’s playlists or help discover new music talent through social media. Stay tuned for that!
Name a place that’s changed you or affected you more than you expected?
Tokyo. I love Asian culture and my first visit to Japan was so unique because I felt completely alien—a proper foreigner—because I couldn't speak the language or understand the culture. All I had to do was learn, sit back, and take it all in. I couldn’t have enjoyed it more.
What was your favorite Philippine destination and why?
During my trip to the Philippines, I learned that it has over 7,100 islands and in the 10 days I was there, I only went to 6! It feels like there is so much more of the country that I need to explore and we're hoping to come back very soon to see more of the places that we've been recommended. I'm always asked where my favorite destinations are in the world and it's always impossible to say. There’s too many. The same is true with the Philippines. I fell in love with all that I saw! El Nido is definitely a highlight, as well as the Kawasan Falls. They were the first images I saw of your country on Instagram so they will always have special significance for me.
Favorite Filipino food?
BUKO! Definitely! I had buko daily on the beach and loved them! Mangoes are a close second though because it is a struggle to find good, fresh fruit in London and New York.
What about a Filipino dish you just couldn’t get onboard with?
Chicken feet! I love chicken but couldn't get to grips with the feet. Too many bones and not enough meat!
How do you keep fit while traveling?
I always have a pair of trainers, an iPod, and a heart rate monitor or watch in my hand luggage wherever I travel. I'll have a jump rope and a TRX in my checked luggage as I always make sure I train when I'm on the road. I find that it makes travelling so much more fun when I've done a hard work out and really earned the rest that I'm about to get on the beach or whichever place I just arrived in. I like to do freeletics, which focuses on weight exercises, so no matter how light you travel, there's no excuse not to do some kind of exercise.
What are some of your favorite exercises?
I love doing weights. I think it's a throwback to my rugby days but lifting anything big and heavy is something I really enjoy! Squats, deadlifts, bench presses, pull-ups, and any of the big compound exercises that use the major muscle groups are something I love! I also like to sprint, either out on the beach or HIIT on a treadmill. I experience a runner’s high when I go for a hard run.
What food item do you indulge in?
CHOCOLATE! It’s my biggest weakness. I have a very bad sweet tooth! Any and all kinds of chocolate, I'll indulge in...and brownies. And ice cream. I love all of those!
How about food that keeps you fit?
Lean cuts of fish, sweet potatoes, and fibrous vegetables. I'll eat fish every day, mainly organic salmon or trout for oily pink fish, and cod or haddock for white fish. All of those taste great with pepper and simple herbs so they're easy to make. I also eat a lot of broccoli. It's rich in antioxidants and is a great source of fiber. I'll eat it with peppers, which has more Vitamin C than oranges and maybe some carrots. Sweet potatoes are my go to carbohydrate because they're slow-releasing, delicious, and great fuel for an energetic life.
What health or food trend do you disagree with?
No-carb diets. I think they are terrible. I strongly advocate that people eat carbs as a key part of their diet. Knowing the difference between fast-acting sugary carbs found in sodas, candy, cakes, and the slow-releasing, nourishing carbs in sweet potatoes, brown rice, and steel cut oats is important. Eating the former isn't great for you and eating the latter is essential.
What’s your ideal woman?
Family is very big for me so my ideal woman is definitely family-oriented. Wanting to build a big family is a must! Confidence is also really important for me. Being able to support yourself in order to succeed in whatever you want to do is really attractive. My ideal woman would be a go-getter looking to take over the world too! Looks-wise, I’m drawn to tall brunettes with a full, athletic figure.
What’s an absolute deal breaker?
Smoking and not wanting lots of children!
What’s the first thing you notice when you meet someone?
Confidence and ambition. I love confident people who want to achieve things. Achieving things doesn't have to be something like building a big business or being a successful personality though; it could be becoming a world-class teacher or vet or artist. It really doesn't matter what it is, just that it inspires you to be the best.
Because you travel so much, do you believe that long distance relationships work?
With the right person, absolutely. Long distance is definitely not the long-term goal, but if it has to start that way while things are growing, I'm totally fine with that.
Would you step away from all the travel when you’ve found the right one?
100% there's no doubt in my mind about that one!
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