I’ve been reflecting on working from home recently and it brought back memories of all my office setups (laptop, phone, planner) in so many places around the world.
My work from home journey began in my junior year of high school. I went to physical classes at my brick and mortar high school for half of the day, then went home and took extra online classes to graduate early. During that time I also started taking on clients as a virtual assistant, and later offering a broader range of digital marketing services, which I’m still doing today in addition to running Thither.com.
After graduating a year early, at 17 years old I embarked on an around the world journey for two years with my parents and younger brother. During that trip, I was working from whichever place I called home at that time, whether it was in an Airbnb or hotel.
From all over South America and Asia to New Zealand and the Caribbean, here are 20 of my favorite work from home spaces around the world. (Some images aren’t the best in the world, as they were taken with my iPhone 4s, which is funny to think was the latest technology back then!)
1. Patagonia, Chile
Chile was the first country on our around the world trip so this was one of the first times I could take an office around the world picture. In Puerto Natales in Patagonia, we chose to stay at Weskar Lodge. There were beautiful views from all over the hotel, including in the breakfast room where I sat in the afternoons when guests were out exploring Patagonia.
2. Bali, Indonesia
In Bali we stayed in an Airbnb in Ubud. Bali is known as a destination for beachgoers, but this part of Bali is not near the beach. And it’s the area I actually prefer. The area is known for its rice terraces and our Airbnb was set among lots of greenery. We even had our own pool, which could be viewed from my office setup.
3. Queenstown, New Zealand
I spent a month in New Zealand. Most of the time was spent in Auckland visiting family friends, but we also took buses to explore several cities in the South Island. At a hotel in Queenstown, I sat at the lounge area to get some work done.
4. Jakarta, Indonesia
I love having family living all over the world. In Jakarta, I got to spend time with family and also explore the city. They lived in a complex surrounded by a golf course so I got to go to the driving range occasionally and get work done with a view of the golf course.
5. Shanghai, China
Another relative lived in Shanghai and lived near Jing’an Sculpture Park so I would run around the park, take Mandarin Chinese classes in a language school, and get work done with a view of the park.
They also had a dog so he was a bit of a cute distraction.
6. Cuenca, Ecuador
I have a lot of Ecuador work from home pictures. One reason is because I spent a lot of time there and second because the country is just so beautiful. This was in Cuenca at Piedra de Agua thermal spa. They had really good internet there so while I waited for friends and family, I had one of my favorite memorable solo breakfasts, then did some work on my laptop.
7. Cotopaxi, Ecuador
This was at a very remote area of Ecuador. I remember there was no internet, so it was time to write and catch up on projects that didn’t require internet. Views were stunning.
I’ve still been traveling after the two year around the world trip. My mom and I try to take a trip to the Caribbean every year together. One year we went to Barbados and stayed at the Fairmont Barbados, where all rooms faced the ocean, providing a great backdrop for my work from home office.
9. Quito, Ecuador
Another Ecuador office. This one is from the capital city of Quito, which is located in the Andes Mountains so there’s amazing mountain views all over the city, including from the top floor lounge of the JW Marriott Quito. I remember being so excited about the lounge because of the free sparkling water and great internet. Both things that make a great work from home space.
10. Reykjavik, Iceland
The first destination in Europe during our around the world trip was Reykjavik. We stayed in an Airbnb in a local neighborhood.
11. St. Petersburg, Russia
One of my favorite hotel stays ever was at the Four Season St. Petersburg housed in a former palace. I sat in the spa area to do some work where I could hear the waterfall from the indoor pool. Almost out of nowhere there would be someone to make sure you had everything you need. I kept being offered tea so I was served a cup of peppermint tea while working.
12. Lake Atitlan, Guatemala
Again, after the around the world trip, we still travel as a family whenever we can. One trip we decided to take was to Guatemala and I chose to stay at Villas Balam Ya. It’s located in on the coast of Lake Atitlan. The villa had a hammock on the terrace and a large table to serve as my desk.
13. London, England
My first solo trip was to London. I stayed at The Kensington Hotel, which was so beautifully decorated in a Kensington townhouse. This was my room, which I thought looked really cool from the mirror.
14. Otavalo, Ecuador
And another Ecuador one! We stayed at Hacienda Cusin to visit the famous Otavalo Market. The hacienda was a 17th century colonial home and this was the library.
15. Amman, Jordan
My first trip to the Middle East was to Jordan. The last few nights in Jordan were spent in the capital city, Amman at the Fairmont Amman. The city is made up of various circles so the high floors of the hotel allowed me to see how the circles look from above.
16. St. Kitts & Nevis
On one of our annual Caribbean trips, my mom and I chose to stay at the Park Hyatt St. Kitts. St. Kitts and Nevis is made up of two islands, St. Kitts and the other, Nevis. The hotel is located on St. Kitts and from our room, we could see Nevis.
17. Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
I like to have fresh flowers when I’m working from home and while in Kuala Lumpur Malaysia where I was visiting family, I wanted to recreate my work from home office with some flowers.
I never realized how hard it is to find fresh flowers in other countries. It guess it’s too hot for freshly cut flowers to be outside in the humidity in KL so I had to go around looking for those flowers to complete my workspace. I finally found some at the Ritz Carlton’s flower shop.
18. San Francisco, USA
I love historic hotels so while in San Francisco, I stayed at the Fairmont San Francisco, which is the original Fairmont hotel. My room had a view of the iconic Transamerica Pyramid building.
19. Santiago, Chile
While this picture is not great, it’s one of my favorites because of the memories. Santiago was the first city we flew into to being our two year around the world trip. At the Airbnb we stayed at, I had to improvise and make my own workspace using a nightstand as a seat and a swivel stool as a table. Not ideal, but the views were amazing.
20. Trinidad, Paraguay
And another that holds memories more than being a beautiful location. This is teenage me in Paraguay. Part of the South America portion of our trip included being part of a tour group taking a truck overland from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil all the way to Lima, Peru. One of our stops was in the heart of South America, Paraguay. We camped in a place called Trinidad and the only place that had internet was the main house, so I had to walk over there to get some work done.
Which one of these work from home setups is your favorite?