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The VIP Lounge with Hannah Cruz

Hannah Cruz and her boyfriend, cinematographer Nicasio Zanetti, on vacation.
Hannah Cruz and her boyfriend, cinematographer Nicasio Zanetti, on vacation.

To call the role of Elizabeth “Eliza” Schuyler Hamilton — wife of American founding father Alexander Hamilton — in the Tony Award-winning musical “Hamilton” the role of a lifetime would be an understatement. Hannah Cruz, 26, was recently cast in the role for the national tour, making her debut in Boston, where the show is at the Opera House through Oct. 19. “It’s exhausting, and still very new to me, but it is wonderful. I love playing Eliza,” said Cruz. “And the Opera House is incredible.” The Newtown, Conn., native, who lives in Brooklyn with her boyfriend, cinematographer Nicasio Zanetti, said the response from audiences has been “phenomenal.” “And the people at the stage door are so complimentary and say things like they’ve been waiting for two years to see ‘Hamilton,’ ” she added. We recently caught up with Cruz — who said that she has been enjoying exploring Boston during the show’s monthlong run and has found a couple of small bookstores she likes — to talk about all things travel.

Favorite vacation destination? Kona, Hawaii. I’ve only been once, but it was the most adventure-filled, wondrous vacation. So many firsts . . . surfing, swimming with wild dolphins, helicopter ride over the island, [and] my first visit to a coffee farm. It was incredible.


Favorite food or drink while vacationing? I always scope out a good burrito place and some third-wave coffee joints. I also love going to local breweries, [to] get . . . some IPAs and some sour beers.

Where would you like to travel to but haven’t? I’ve never been to Europe. Part of me doesn’t even believe it’s real. Being in this business doesn’t grant a lot of flexibility — or money — so it’s never been an option for me. However, I am trying to finally plan something at the end of next year.


One item you can’t leave home without when traveling? A book. I am never without a book in my bag.

Aisle or window? Window. I love watching the globe below.

Favorite childhood travel memory? Disney World for sure. My sisters and I really had magical times there. We wouldn’t want to waste any of the trip bickering, so we had a phrase we would say to each other when we started to get angry: “bibbidi bobbidi boo,” which meant you had to take a breath and be happy again.

Guilty pleasure when traveling? I tend to drink a bit more when I’m in vacation mode.

Best travel tip? Put your phone away. Pictures are important, but so is the moment at hand. These [three pictures submitted for this story] are basically the only photos I have from that trip, and that makes them all the more special to me.