My Holidays: Campbell Smith

Campbell Smith. Photo / Janna Dixon
Campbell Smith. Photo / Janna Dixon

How often do you travel?
A lot, although it's mostly work-related. Rarely a month or two goes by without me changing countries. Living between Auckland and Los Angeles exacerbates that.

Best holiday ever?
My best friend built El Blok, a stunning 20-room boutique hotel on the tiny island of Vieques, Puerto Rico. I go there a couple of times a year and each time it feels like the greatest holiday ever.

Best get-away-from-it-all place to escape to and why?
My beach house in the far north of the Coromandel. It's right on the water and apart from a lovely old lady who lives over a stream and across a field, there's no house or person anywhere near it.

Favourite city?
Paris. I lived there for most of 2012, doing nothing but riding a bike, lying in parks, looking at art and eating pastry.

Best meal you've eaten while travelling?
A multi-course banquet in a dark chamber inside the Stroganov Palace in St Petersburg, Russia.

Best travel tip?
Wear only black clothes and take only as much as you can fit in a carry-on. Even if you're away for a year.

Where would you love to return to and why?
Japan, specifically Tokyo. I spent 10 days there in a most excellent drunken stupor when the Naked And Famous played Fuji Rock Festival a few years back. I think I loved it. I'd like to go back and see if I was right.

Most luxurious travel moment?
Staying at Sanctuary Lodge at the top of Machu Picchu. It's a nice hotel, but the real luxury was in the waking up so high above the Sacred Valley and being right on the doorstep of the Inca Citadel.

What do you hate about travelling?
American airports and everything about them - idiots with guns, bad and expensive food, security queues, endless waiting, miles of fluoro lighting and too many people in travel wear.

Finish this sentence. It's not a proper holiday unless...
I've got an airplane cold, caught from breathing the same re-processed air as hundreds of other people for hours.

Where is your next holiday?
Iceland. I love hiking, and I want to hike the Laugavegurinn trail. Although when commercial flights start operating to the Antarctic, I'll be right there.

Campbell Smith is the promoter of Auckland City Limits Music Festival being held at Western Springs Park, Auckland on March 19. But tickets from


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