Frequent Flyer: Rachelle Wintzen of Chi Junky

This former dancer, who spent almost a decade in NYC’s nightlife industry, became a health junky and hasn’t looked back.


After an injury ended Rachelle Wintzen’s professional dance career, the Toronto native ended up working for a decade in New York City’s nightlife scene and got completely burnt out physically and mentally. Deciding to radically detox her body for a year, she became addicted to clean living. Now a certified holistic nutritionist, yoga instructor, and the founder of Chi Junky, Rachelle is helping others transform their lives for the better. “The best part of my job is seeing how my vision and space has helped change peoples lives in more ways than they could ever imagine,” says Rachelle. “It is an absolute pleasure to be able to share the same lifestyle that saved my life and to see how it has helped so many more.”

Having lived in three different countries and travelling quite regularly during her time in NYC, recently Rachelle hasn’t had as much time as she’d like to travel (although she just got back fro a trip to Nicaragua). “I travel mostly for pleasure but am working on being able to travel for work for the Chi Junky Detox & Yoga Retreats,” she shares. We were curious to know the habits of a healthy traveller (coconut water is on the list), as well as hear some of Rachelle’s hidden gems from her travels. Find out where this yogi goes to get really zen.

What’s your carry-on bag?

I love Longchamp bags because they are light and can hold a lot! I also LOVE the brand m0851 they do amazing duffle bags for travel. I have a large black duffle.

Travel & Style’s Pick: m0815 FC 64 Duffle Bag, $570,

What are the top 3 essentials you put in your carry-on?

Bottled Water. Pacifica Lip Gloss. A fave sweater.

Travel & Style’s Pick: Pacifica Enlightened Gloss in Pink Coral, $12,

Travel accessory/app you can’t leave home without?  

My iPhone and Google Maps App! I don’t do directions well.

What are your go-to snacks when you’re on the go/in the airport?

Coconut water, herbal teas, cashews and almonds, and fresh fruit.

Favourite hotel?

Las Ventanas Al Paraiso is stunning for a luxe vacay, but Maderas Village, Nicaragua was an all-time favourite. Incredible surf, yoga, food and a great vibe of people all escaping from the madness of city life.

Hotel amenity you can’t live without?

Pool or beach.

Best meal on your last trip/ever. Where and what did you have?

Fresh caught lobster tail on a beach in Nicaragua with tons of fresh avocado and veggies. So fresh. So good.

Current travel reading material/playlist?

Kings of Leon, Gary Clark Jr., Sam Smith. Latest books on health and wellness…right now Wheels of Life by Anodea Judith.

Favourite travel-friendly beauty product?  

Leaves of Trees Lavender lotion.

Tell us what your airplane style is.

Comfort with simple style when I travel is everything to me. Lululemon black yoga pants. American Apparel long sleeve top (black, white or grey). My fave jean jacket from Abercrombie from 2001! or my fave black leather jacket I got from the brand Morgan in Paris a decade ago. It’s so worn in..I love it.

Travel & Style’s Pick: Mango Leather Biker Jacket, $209.95,

Most memorable souvenir?

I never really buy souvenirs. I take lots of pictures of the trip and those are my souvenirs and memories.

Travel & Style’s Pick: Leica D-Lux 6 in glossy black/silver, $699,

Where was your last vacation and what was the best thing you did?

Nicaragua – Maderas Village. I spent everyday on a stunning beach surfing, soaking up the sun, indulging in fresh passion fruit margaritas, eating amazing food and meeting inspiring people living the dream on the beach.

Favourite place in the world to do yoga.

On the beach! Any tropical beach will do.

Tell us about one of your favourite “off-the-beaten path” finds we should check out.

Rojo Lounge, in San Pedro, Belize. It is this small beach lounge with amazing food and cocktails right on the beach. Super romantic in the evening and incredibly relaxing during the day.

Biggest splurge when you travel.

Food! I always make sure I eat well, I love to go out to eat on vacay and indulge.

Dream destination?

There are so many! A few are…Galapagos islands, Efate Island Vanuatu, Bali, Greek Islands.