Montblanc director Christian Rauch's travel tips

Culture is in the air for Montblanc's director of pens and leather goods, Christian Rauch, who travels the world meeting clients who spend £500,000 a year on writing instruments.

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Last Updated: 09 Oct 2013

Where do you travel?

Montblanc has 450 boutiques all over the world, so I travel often - usually once a week. I spend a lot of time in the US and Asia. We were one of the first luxury brands to arrive in Hong Kong in the 1990s, and China is a big market for us.

Describe a typical trip

I present limited-edition collections to our colleagues abroad and I'll visit some of our biggest collectors, who typically spend more than £500,000 a year on writing instruments. My trips are usually quite brief. I recently went to Johannesburg, and I did one presentation with some jewellers and flew home the same day.

How do you travel?

I'll travel business class if flying long-haul and economy if it's within Europe. On a long flight, I'll read if I'm not working. I collect books and usually carry far too many.

Mostly it's 18th or 19th century poetry, as well as Greek classical literature like Socrates. I also travel with lots of classical music - my favourites are Mozart and Bach symphonies.

Favourite hotel?

The Palazzo Sasso in Ravello, on the coast of Italy. It overlooks the entire coast and has beautiful restaurants nearby. You never want to leave Italy if you're there.

Rome is Christian Rauch's favourite city

Favourite country?

I love Italy. I used to have family out there so I was going back and forth for years. My favourite city is Rome. I love architecture and renaissance art, so it's like being in a living museum. I also love Japan. I worked at Sony for 10 years and used to visit Osaka frequently. Beautiful cherry blossom seems to grow everywhere and the people wear traditional kimonos. It's a real cultural experience.

Hidden gems?

There are some amazing restaurants in Italy. In Milan I recommend Latteria di San Marco. The chefs use traditional Italian ingredients, but everything is cooked in a contemporary way.

Essential travel item?

I always take my personal diary, which I've used for many years. I write things about the places I visit and what I get up to. I also like to do drawings of the things which impress me.

How do you cope with jet lag?

I have no issues with it. If I have a glass of wine or two at dinner then I'll sleep like a baby.

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