Nov 24, 2010

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Travel Q+A with Jacqueline Gold

Jacqueline Gold 3Jacqueline Gold is CEO of retail brand Ann Summers and Knickerbox and is renowned for managing a company run by women, for women.  Ann Summers is one of the British high streets most recognisable retailers, and Jacqueline is credited with bringing sex to the British High Street.  Jacqueline has won numerous awards and accolades during her career including Retail Week’s Most Powerful Woman in Business and Barclays Bank’s Most Inspirational Businesswoman in the UK.

Over the last 30 years, Jacqueline and Ann Summers have developed hundreds of pioneering products. Most recently, Jacqueline launched a brand new collaboration between Ann Summers and Cosmopolitan magazine.  ‘Cosmosutra’ is an exclusive range of toys and accessories and is available in all Ann Summers stores and through the Ann Summers website –

We recently caught up with Jacqueline to see what travel means to her:

TS – Are holidays important to you?
JG – Absolutely.  Holidays are so important as they allow us to spend time together as a family and of course re-charge our batteries!  They also help create memories that will last a lifetime.

TS – How many leisure trips have you taken this year so far?
JG – This year I have been lucky enough to go away on three occasions, one of which was my honeymoon with my husband Dan in May.

TS – Where is your favourite holiday destination?

Capri in Italy, one of Jacquelines favourite destinations

Capri in Italy, one of Jacqueline's favourite destinations

JG – My favourite long haul destination has to be Barbados for all the obvious reasons of sun, sea and sand!  And for short haul it has to be Capri.  Capri is one of the most stylish places I have ever been and every time I go I fall in love with it all over again.

TS – Have you ever been on holiday and not enjoyed your trip?
JG – I have always enjoyed my holidays however my hen do sticks out in my mind as a holiday that towards the end was somewhat stressful!  I had decided to go away for four days with my close girlfriends to Cyprus, after a fabulous few days we were all set to come home when the ash cloud descended!  As I’m sure most people know, air space was shut for several days and no one was moving in or out of Europe.  I was desperate to get home to see my family, and in particular my daughter Scarlett, and of course get back to work!  I did eventually get home, however my journey involved – a flight to Greece, a private jet to Marseille, a hotel in Marseille, a train to Paris, a eurostar train to St. Pancras and a cab home!

TS – Where is the most romantic destination you have been to?
JG – It has to be Rome as this was where my husband Dan proposed.  A beautiful city with the perfect mix of romance, good food and fantastic shopping!

Barbados - a luxury destination

Barbados - an indulgence

TS – Where has been the most expensive destination you have been to?
JG – I would have to say Sandy Lane, Barbados.  A real indulgence but absolutely worth it.

TS – Do you tend to take your work phone or laptop away with you when on holiday?
JG – Being the CEO of a company, it’s difficult to just walk away and not be in contact with your team.  Holidays are about escaping however the reality is that these days it’s harder and harder to do this!  I have always taken a work phone and laptop away with me which means I can stay in contact.  My team are very good though and know I need to relax so only get in touch if it’s something really urgent.  I recently bought an iPad which is much easier to travel with and means that I can work, and play at the same time.  It’s also a lot more sociable!

TS – Work aside, what three things can’t you travel without? (excluding your passport!)
JG – My phone, my iPad and my own pillow.  I have slept in some very comfortable hotel beds but nothing quite beats your own pillow!

TS – Who would be your ideal holiday companion?
JG – It really depends on the type of holiday.  My family holiday is a must as my family are very precious to me, however, I love girlie holidays with my friends.  I’ve also found going away with other couples who have children of the same age is now a recipe for a great holiday too!

TS – Do children make travelling a joy or a nightmare?
JG – My daughter Scarlett has been travelling since she was 4 months old.  I always make sure I travel very well prepared, and if everything is organised in advance, we don’t usually have any problems.  However, if all else fails my iPad usually saves the day as I have endless episodes of Peppa Pig which keep Scarlett entertained.  For me, it’s all about being prepared.

TS – What is your favourite type of holiday? Sun, sea and sand, skiing, a city break, UK break or something more adventurous?
JG – Definitely Sun, Sea and Sand with a big helping of r&r.

TS – What do you love most about travelling?
JG –  I love seeing the World and visiting new places, being able to have quality family time and having the opportunity to unwind and switch off from everyday life.

TS – What is the most annoying thing about travelling?
JG – My pet hate is the long, laborious walk from the plane to the baggage reclaim.  As airports get bigger the walk to reclaim gets longer!! Travelling with an 18 month old baby, toys and lots of hand luggage without the aid of a pram is always a nightmare!

TS – Are you any good at haggling for a good price when booking your holiday? Do you always get a good deal or is price irrelevant when it comes to holidays?
JG – As I’m sure is the case with most people with anything I purchase I always want to get value for money and this is definitely true of holidays.  Holidays are an indulgence but I would always want to make sure we were getting a good deal.  I’m not known for haggling, but I know a good deal when I see one and I also know if someone is trying to over charge and I won’t stand for that!

TS – Is there anywhere left on your holiday wish list?
JG – Japan and The Seven Wonders of the World.

Japan is still on Jacqueline's holiday wishlist

Japan is still on Jacqueline's holiday wishlist


The images used in this post are sourced under the creative commons licence from The respective image owners are:

Capri – S J Pinkney
Japan – Luckygun
Barbados – Derek Hatfield

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