Hot air balloon in the Serengeti viewing a giraffe

About us

Personalized, life-enriching travel experiences

Our Story

Brian Tan and Yuchun Ku started Zicasso to solve their own travel challenges. As busy executives in Silicon Valley, this husband and wife team wanted to explore two new international destinations each year, but didn't have time to plan their vacations fully.

Planning a complex international itinerary using online sites would take them forever. Using a traditional travel agency didn't help either, because the agents were usually generalists without expert knowledge of Brian and Yuchun's chosen destinations.

As they searched, however, the couple did find several travel specialists with expert destination knowledge and insider access to incredible experiences. They typically worked in small boutique companies with fewer than half a dozen employees. When Brian and Yuchun used these exceptional specialists, they got exceptional vacations!

In the process, they identified a pressing need for a one-stop online service that could reliably connect discerning travelers with proven, pre-qualified specialists in specific fields of travel. And thus, Zicasso was born.

As well as a unique trip planning process linking travelers with top travel specialists, Brian and Yuchun designed a series of rigorous standards and systems to ensure that only the best companies become part of Zicasso's travel team. Every specialist is personally interviewed and must demonstrate exceptional destination knowledge and local contacts before joining the Zicasso network. They must also maintain a minimum rating of 4.25 out of 5 stars in their reviews from Zicasso travelers.

As founder and CEO, Brian leads the company with a laser focus on excellence.

He's recognized as a leader and visionary in the industry, often quoted in top travel publications and regularly speaking at shows like The New York Times Travel Show.

Brian's never-ending curiosity to learn and understand our world has taken him to more than 45 countries - from climbing the Great Wall of China to diving the Great Barrier Reef. He has a particular passion for African safaris and wilderness conservation.

Brian received his MBA and MS in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from MIT, as well as a BS in Electrical Engineering from Brown University.

Founder and COO Yuchun leads our team in client relations, analytics, and finance.

Yuchun's travels to over 50 countries have taken her to all corners of the planet, from the Andes to Zanzibar. Her passion for travel particularly centers around her interests in food, history, culture, and especially wildlife. She's always ready to return to Africa for another safari!

Yuchun holds an MBA from the Wharton Business School of the University of Pennsylvania, a Master of Architecture from UC Berkeley, and an MS in Engineering from National Taiwan University.

Our name

The Zicasso name evolved from our desire to personalize each trip with experiences that are unique, authentic, and a million miles from mass tourism. This is a feat that we believe is beyond the capabilities of AI – an art that's best left to true travel specialists. Like the great artist Picasso whom we admire, "Zicasso" represents our relentless search for the unique and the original – out of zillions of possibilities.

Our team

The Zicasso travel team is committed to ensuring client satisfaction. From the moment you reach out with your initial ideas, to finalizing your personalized, luxury travel plans, we're here to help you every step of the way. Click below to meet the team that makes your dream trip possible.

Meet the team

Our commitment to quality

In addition to the time spent vetting the experience, credentials, and capabilities of our travel specialists, we commit many hours to their training, setting quality expectations, and coaching their staff. To achieve consistent excellence, we have found that there are absolutely no shortcuts in this process!

But we don't stop at this initial vetting and training. We also monitor quality based on honest reviews from our trusted travelers. All Zicasso travelers are invited to write reviews when they return from their trips, and each travel specialist must maintain a minimum 4.25-star average rating out of 5 stars. Every review comes from a real traveler who has been on a trip with Zicasso.

Our values and community

Zicasso's community is one in which discerning travelers seek the best in quality, authenticity, and value delivered by our travel specialists. In surpassing the expectations of our travelers, our specialists receive the recognition they deserve and consequently get more business. Travelers and travel specialists come to Zicasso to help each other experience the very best in travel – from both their perspectives.

To promote and reward excellence in travel, our community is guided by the following core values:

  • We believe in open and honest communications - and no hidden agendas

  • We "do the right thing" and act with integrity and fairness

  • We respect each other's time and effort

  • We treat others the way we want to be treated

  • We are always here to help each other experience the best in travel

In the spirit of these values, Zicasso also pledges that:

  • We always operate with the highest integrity

  • We never spam

  • We never share our users' names and contact information with any third parties

  • We take your privacy protection extremely seriously