The Travel Issue 2009


Fantastic Journeys: India, Africa, Alaska, Egypt, The Caribbean, Japan, New Zealand, Mexico & More Seven Spiritual Sites by Private Jet. Touring Tuscany in Vintage Italian Autos. Navigate Moscow's Super-Clubs. Chartering the Mediterranean's Top Megayachts.

From This Issue

Contributors: On the Road Again

Freelance journalist James Sturz has written for more than 60 magazines and newspapers, and he has authored a novel set in Italy. For his first contribution to Robb Report, he roamed the back roads between Rome and Bologna in three vintage Italian sports cars (“Via Flaminia,” page 94). The eight-day, seven-night trip led him through […]

From the Editors: A Billionaire’s Folly

John Keats observed in men of high achievement an aptitude for “being in uncertainties, Mysteries, doubts, without any irritable reaching after fact and reason.” This comfortable acceptance of contradictions, which Keats called negative capability, perfectly encapsulates the personae of the late British-French multibillionaire Sir James Goldsmith, whose Mexican estates appear in this month’s special travel […]

Via Flaminia

Surrounded by olive trees and grapevines at the open-air trattoria in Vetralla, 40 miles north of Rome, we had eaten Lallo Piergentili’s aged cheeses, cured meats, and pappardelle with wild boar. Now he walked with us from his restaurant to the parking lot, carrying a tin of his own olive oil. “This is a gift,” […]

The Perfect 10: The Cairo Connection

What » A journey to Egypt’s highest pyramids, on its longest river, and inside its most private tombs.   Who » “I’m a frustrated Indiana Jones,” says Destinations & Adventures International president James Berkeley. “I love temples, and I love to think about how they were built.” Berkeley explored countless temples firsthand while running Abercrombie […]

The Perfect 10: Yen and Yang

What » An exploration of contrasting cultures in Japan and southern China.   Who » Randy Lynch has traveled regularly to Asia since 1979, when he began working as a sales representative for Korean Air. In 2000 he founded Kipling & Clark, a Chicago-based tour operator that specializes in Asia, and he has since averaged […]

The Perfect 10: Surf and Turf

What » A two-part trip to see the best of Mexico’s coast and colonial core.   Who » Hoteliers Goffredo and Alix Marcaccini moved from Los Angeles to Mexico in 1992. “After the L.A. riots,” says Goffredo, “we decided to stay here.” The couple now owns and operates Hacienda de San Antonio, a hotel in […]

The Perfect 10: Going with the Floe

What » A private yacht charter through Alaska’s Inside Passage and along British Columbia’s coast.   Who » Michael Sawyer, the president of Infinity Yacht Charters, specializes in tracking down superyachts in the Pacific Northwest. “They’re not up here every year,” says Sawyer, who is based near Seattle, “but many of the world’s elite superyachts […]

The Perfect 10: Insider’s Italy

What » The ultimate villa-rental experience in Tuscany.   Who » Claus and Jeanette Thottrup, the Danish owners of Borgo Santo Pietroin southwestern Tuscany, moved in 2001 from their adopted home in London to Italy. While living part-time in Italy’s northern mountains, the couple discovered the 13-acre Borgo Santo Pietro estate in a remote valley, […]

The Perfect 10: King of India

What » A private-plane excursion through the subcontinent, with stops in New Delhi, Varanasi, Agra, Ajabgarh, Jaipur, Jodhpur, Udaipur, and Mumbai.   Who » The Chicago-based travel outfitter Greaves Tours has been taking clients to the Indian subcontinent—and only the Indian subcontinent—for more than 15 years. “It all began in the U.K., when friends and […]

The Perfect 10: Good Migrations

What » A cultural and ecological journey through South Africa, Botswana, Tanzania, and Kenya.   Who » Will Jones moved to London after spending the first 25 years of his life in six African countries. In 1999 he founded Journeys by Design, a travel outfitter that focuses exclusively on the continent he knows best. “The […]

The Perfect 10: Flight Plans

What » Outdoor adventure and cultural immersion on a helicopter trip through New Zealand.   Who » Jean-Michel Jefferson was an aviation strategist before he launched New Zealand–based Ahipara Luxury Travel seven years ago. Not surprisingly, he takes a consultant-style approach to arranging excursions to the country. “We start by building a brief of clients’ […]

The Perfect 10: God Speed

What » A pilgrimage by private jet to explore the origins of Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, and Sikhism.   Who » TCS Expeditions specializes in themed around-the-world trips by private jet. The Seattle-based company typically charters a Boeing 757 for its approximately 24-day-long journeys, which can accommodate as many as 74 clients at a […]

Bear Essentials

It was 3 am in Moscow, and dawn was a lipstick streak across the horizon as our limo arrived at a drab, warehouselike structure in an outlying district of the city. A crowd had gathered on the sidewalk out front, and the face control, as the Russians call it, was intense: A gaggle of thick-necks […]

Bear Essentials: Enter the Oligarchs

One of the first oligarchs was Boris Berezovsky, who exploited his connections with then Prime Minister Boris Yeltsin to establish a company that sold cars directly from a state-owned factory. Later, Berezovsky took over Sibneft, Russia’s largest oil company, before becoming the main shareholder in the country’s largest television station. In the course of business, Berezovsky […]

The Robb Reader: Geoffrey Kent

Robbb Report spoke with Abercrombie & Kent founder Geoffrey Kent in Los Angeles during a recent promotional tour for the company’s new Abercrombie & Kent Residence Club, which launched this past fall. A tireless traveler 220 days out of the year, he had just returned from a trip to Rio de Janeiro, where, in his […]

Flight Deck

Several years ago, the fractional aviation industry realized that it was grossly underutilizing a costly asset: its aircraft. At that time, fractional fleets flew only 25 to 30 percent of a given year and spent the rest of the time in hangars gathering dust. One of the industry’s solutions to this problem was to offer […]

Mediterranean Marvels

The gray days of winter offer charter-yacht customers ample motivation to plan summer holidays in the Mediterranean. With June fast approaching, these sun worshippers are calling harbormasters from Antibes to Portofino to reserve marina slips—?especially for events such as the Monaco Grand Prix and the Cannes Film Festival. They are confirming launch dates and discussing […]

The Perfect 10: Chart Topper

What » A yacht charter through the eastern Caribbean, with stops in Antigua, Barbuda, St. Barts, St. Martin, Anguilla, and the British Virgin Islands. Who » The London-based yachting company Burgess manages a fleet of more than 60 charter vessels, which range in size from 100 feet to 312 feet. Tom Collins, who has been […]