Samantha Brown, the inspiring and popular host of several programs on the Travel Channel, spends over 200 days traveling each year. In May 2009, her adventures continued with the second season of her widely popular series, Samantha Brown’s Great Weekends, which airs every Saturday through September at 10pm.
Sam’s childhood in New Hampshire was far from a jet set experience. Her forays out of state led her to nearby Canada or Cape Cod, Massachusetts. “I never dreamed I’d travel to so many exotic locations!” After studying musical theater and receiving her Bachelor’s Degree in Fine Arts at Syracuse University, Sam spent eight years in New York City pursing an acting career. Sam’s path took a dramatic turn when a production company saw her in a commercial and referred her to the Travel Channel “because she looked like the girl next door.”
Sam’s rapid and successful career in travel started with “Great Vacation Homes”, a show based in the United States and offered an insider’s view into a variety of homes and homeowners. From there, Sam was asked to host “Great Hotels,” offering the audience a unique and emotional perspective on each property.
Almost immediately, Sam’s ability to convey the feeling of a specific place – not just the basic facts – established her as an inspirational resource for prospective travelers. This distinctive style was a welcome departure from travel journalism. Her easy-going, playful personality instills trust in her viewers and encourages them to explore new places. Her programs are always shot on location, not from the armchair of a television studio. “I’m not an expert as much as a real person who people connect with. I immerse myself in the culture and invite viewers to do the same.”
Her series, Samantha Brown: Passport To Europe, is a perfect example of sightseeing Samantha Brown-style. By highlighting lesser-known cities, attractions, shopping and eateries, Sam opens the doors to a less regimented sort of travel, with fewer “must-sees” and more memorable discoveries. “I think it’s important to immerse oneself into a culture – get to know the people and the everyday places such as markets and local cafés. The major landmarks and museums only show one aspect of a region and its culture.”
Sam’s current passions allow viewers to travel the globe through her eyes. In Samantha Brown: Passport to Latin America, Sam deems the entire region “the new Europe” thanks to endless cultural attractions at affordable prices. While filming Samantha Brown: Passport to China Sam was awestruck by the country – “China offers such an extraordinary visual and tactile experience, with The Great Wall, Grand palaces and Giant Panda bears.” Back in the United States, Sam is a Disney enthusiast who has filmed numerous programs at the Disney parks and resorts. “It’s the promise of happiness!”
Along with conventional travel, Sam is also fascinated by eco-tourism. Her television show on the Travel Channel, Samantha Brown: Passport to Green Getaways, looks at various eco-friendly destinations in Montana, along with Mexico and Costa Rica.
In Samantha Brown: Passport to Great Weekends, Sam explores cities throughout the United States, Europe, Canada and Mexico. “Unlike a longer trip, a weekend away allows us to be a different person for a few days…we can be hipper, sexier, more spontaneous than in our normal life. I’m having fun showing the audience how to put themselves in the right frame of mind for an adventure.”
When it comes to travel, Sam’s got the scoop. Viewers follow Sam’s escapades and trust her instincts. No matter where she takes you, Samantha Brown will find delicious food, fabulous shopping, architectural treasures and an authentic taste of the region you won’t find in a tourist guidebook. Sam’s knack for creating her own journey is contagious.