Purnima Shrinivas

An independent lifestyle journalist and contributing editor for AMEX Essentials, Purnima covers global style, living and travel, as well as topics that focus on the Indian geography. At other times, you’ll find her on her mat, trying to find balance through yoga.


You write about fashion and lifestyle for amexessentials.com. What most inspires you about your subjects? 
I find the people behind the stories and their life’s journeys the most fascinating and inspiring. Deep down they’re just like the rest of us, only perhaps more imaginative, cognitively flexible, passionate, persistent and resilient.


What kind of details do you look for?
Any details that reveal a simple and original but clever or non-linear approach to solving an existing problem.


What’s the most unusual thing you’ve covered?
While interviewing the renowned Kathak dance maestro Fasih Ur Rehman at his home in London, I had just wrapped up our long meeting when he took me by surprise and asked me to perform a few pieces I had learned as part of my training. It was a little unnerving at first, and I somehow mustered the courage to execute a pirouette or two, but the valuable lessons he taught me afterwards made everything seem more than worthwhile in the end.


What’s the next big thing?
Earth version 2.0, alien life and beyond. It would be fascinating to see what lies ahead.


What website do you check first every day?
Lifehack.org. There’s tremendous everyday wisdom and practical insight to be gleaned from the many perspectives listed there. And there’s nothing like a free life coaching and wellness session, first thing in the morning to kickstart my day.


How do you relax?
Yoga-aahhh! A vinyasa flow/Hatha yoga session helps me unwind completely.


Film or TV?
A film on TV, snuggling under a blanket on a cold winter’s evening.


Books or ebooks?
Of course, books! Is there a question? Nothing beats the sensory appeal of one. And just for the record, I don’t own an iPad, Kindle or Nook : – )


Wine or beer?
Neither. A fresh, cold-pressed, seasonal and locally sourced fruit juice – no added sugar.


Street food or fine dining?
A simple, healthy and wholesome home-cooked meal. Just knowing what goes into my food makes it appealing.


Favourite place? 
Bali, Indonesia – sitting cliffside, staring at the almost endless expanse of the Indian Ocean.


Your secret travel tip?
Any place you go, ditch the guided tours – do your research in advance, chalk up a slow-paced and comfortable itinerary and venture out on your own with Google Maps as your guide. Walk around, rent a bike or take public transport – you’ll learn way more than you will from any guide book and build memories to last a lifetime.


Your three travel essentials? 
Smartphone, power bank and a good book to escape the boredom of a long flight.


Your essential luxury? 
8 hours of restful sleep …and an uninterrupted one at that.