A hotelier turned journalist, known for her love of England and Italy, social media, fine food & wine, country music and Period Dramas, who has recently returned to India (Oct 2015) after 7 years in the UK. She is a travel enthusiast with a varied taste in destinations and is notorious for taking ‘spur-of-the-moment’ trips on an impulse whenever time off work permits. She is happiest when on a boat, beach or en route to a new city/town and has had many a travel adventure (along with the odd misadventure) over the years that she hopes will serve to amuse, enthuse and entertain those who visit this blog, along with her recipes, repertoire of academic work/literature and creativity in different areas which include writing, jewellery design and footwear design.
Hailing from a liberal and multicultural family in India, she grew up between Bombay (now called Mumbai) and Pune, and then went off to a boarding school up in a hill station a few hours from Pune called Panchgani, where she completed the last 4 years of school. Her earliest poems were written here, in the quietude of the study room (referred to as the ‘prep room’) attached to the girls’ dormitory, or under the covers in the light of her orange torch. She finished high school with an A level equivalent in science and business studies, and a rude awakening to the reality of what being a forensic scientist (which is what that had led her to study science in high school) entailed and decided to pursue a career in hotel management instead.
By this time she was already a very independent young adult and a free thinker looking for bigger challenges and what lay beyond the familiar precincts of Pune. She went off to University even further away from home than the boarding school she’d been at to study Hotel Management at the esteemed Institute of Hotel Management, owned by the Taj Group of Hotels, Resorts and Palaces. She has worked in Delhi, Pune and the Maldives in some of the Leading Hotels of the World. You will find some of her academic and professional assignments in the archived section of this blog. (Archive > Hotel Management).
Her last hotel job was at a resort in the Maldives, which is where she developed an interest in diving (which inspired her to write the poem ‘Turquoise Lagoon Affair’ in 2007) and sailing. It was also there, that she came face to face with Author of the book she happened to be halfway through at the time: Raymond Khoury, author of the The Last Templar and The Sanctuary, (among others) and had a change of heart about her work life. That’s when she decided to leave behind a career in hotels and head to England to be a journalist and writer. A number of her poems/lyrics were written during her time in the Maldives, out on her ‘writing rock’ (as she called it).
During her career transition phase she tried her hand at accessories design with the crafting of hats and bags – although her real interest was, is and probably always will be in footwear. She also took up a course in film making and English literature as a precursor to her Masters in Broadcast Journalism, alongside studying French at L’Alliance Française. You will find some her films in the archived section of this blog. (Archive > Films). ‘October Heat’, ‘Pre-Nuptial and a novella ‘Miss-taken for a ride’ (which she has currently put aside to work into a novel) were written during this time.
She moved to the UK in the Summer of 2008, to Cambridge where she undertook training to be a Teacher of English. After gaining her Cambridge Certificate in English Language Teaching to Adults (CELTA) from the University of Cambridge she went on to teach young adults at the Kaplan Aspect School in Cambridge.
Now bitten by the travel bug she decided to go backpacking to Eastern Europe. She visited Krakow, Zakopane, Prague, Vienna and Budapest and then returned back to the U.K. at the end of the summer to join University in Sheffield, where she had enrolled herself on the MA Broadcast Journalism program.
Her London adventure began after she graduated from the University of Sheffield with an MA in Broadcast Journalism and moved to the big smoke. In retrospect, it’s not really such a big smoke when you consider Bombay or Mumbai, a city for which the iphone weather widget actually includes ‘smoke’ in the forecast. Her journalism experience spans current affairs, lifestyle and politics. In 2009, she co produced a segment on the Iraq Inquiry for the BBC World service while interning at the BBC World Service’s World Today program. Other publications she has contributed to include: The Telegraph (fashion section), Top Sante magazine (health news), Ole Magazine, Hello Magazine (fashion section), BOE Magazine (food). he has written extensively on the Madives, Vancouver and India for both print and online, including The Hindu (food and travel) and MAT in flight magazine.
Most recently, she completed a 3 year term at Trinity Mirror Plc, one of the largest newspaper publishers and distributors in the UK. Working and living in the City was her twist on Sex and the City that she likes to call ‘Sips’ in the City.
A creative thinker who thrives in an environment of change, challenge and innovation she is known for her pragmatic and results oriented approach and keen eye for detail. Her passion and dexterity for social media has been pivotal for implementing a company wide social media strategy and policy at Trinity Mirror Digital Classifieds (part of Trinity Mirror Plc). Prior to that she worked for Groupon UK & IE (Forbe’s fastest growing business of 2010), where she Championed key online communications. A versatile multi-tasker, she simultaneously undertook journalism assignments which included assisting with a BBC Panorama documentary and hosting a weekly radio show at a station in Berkshire.
“Contrasts, convictions and a curiosity about other cultures have defined the way I think to a great extent and made me who I am. I know what I want and I’m not afraid to go after it, no matter how arduous the route because I’m driven by my dreams and powered by my resilience and ambition. In spite of having a fairly long uphill climb and dealing with loss and emotional upheaval in the early stages of my life I have battled through the turmoil and as my friends say, ‘I always pick myself up no matter how many times I fall’. – Aminah
‘Failure is not falling down but refusing to get up.’
– Chinese Proverb
No one and nothing can break my spirit, not even me. Even when I feel it crack and I’m considering giving up, the words of Winston Churchill echo in the back of my mind and I cannot bring myself to “give up”. – Aminah
When not working or travelling, she can be found concocting new dessert and cake recipes in her kitchen or sketching shoe designs for what she hopes may one day be her own line of footwear someday!
After having reviewed restaurants, hotels, recipe books and experiences offered to tourists in Mumbai, Nasik (India’s Napa Valley), Vancouver and the Maldives she has now turned her critique’s eye to online gaming. Currently on a sabbatical, she writes freelance for a number of online casinos and gaming websites, which include CasinoTop10.com and CasinoTopLists.com; her reviews, news and guides for online casino goers seek to not only enthuse gamblers, but also bring novices and the seasoned land based casino goers up to speed with the latest games and top.
She returned to India in October this year after a 4 month sabbatical in Europe which included a little more of London, Glastonbury 2015, Ireland, Gibraltar (where she qualified as an RYA Day Skipper), Spain, Morocco, more London (with a Certificate in Footwear Design from the London College of Fashion), Milan (where she attended MICAM, the world’s largest footwear expo), Lake Como, Verona, a yacht racing + pub hopping weekend in Liverpool and a final round of London (and a VIP Pass to Stylist Live).
She is currently freelancing as a Digital Marketing and PR Consultant for clients in the UK, working on a collection of footwear designs that she hopes to put into production in the new year and assisting in the compilation a collection of poems to be published this summer (by the Indian Author and Poet Randhir Khare).
To find out more about her visit her LinkedIn profile or tweet her @aminahkhan238
Aminah Khan © 2015, All rights reserved