Last Updated: May 28, 2008: 11:51 AM EDT
Email | Print    Type Size  -  +

Tequila scion travels well

Juan Domingo Beckmann, the executive director of Casa Cuervo, spends about half the year traveling. Here are some of his tips.

By Eugenia Levenson, writer-reporter

Hot shot: Beckmann, in the lobby of New York's Royalton Hotel, is a tenth-generation tequila maker.

(Fortune Magazine) -- Growing up, Juan Domingo Beckmann knew he was destined to enter the family business. His ancestors had been making tequila for more than 200 years, ever since Charles IV of Spain granted patriarch José Antonio de Cuervo the first commercial license to produce the liquor in 1795.

Today Beckmann leads the privately held company with his father, Juan Vidal Beckmann, helping oversee production in Mexico and shuttling between the firm's offices in Mexico City, New York, London, and Hong Kong.

We caught up with the tequila scion on a visit to New York City.

1. Days on the road - Easily 180 a year.

2. Go Newark - When I fly to New York from Mexico City, I like to go to Newark airport. You clear customs faster than at John F. Kennedy. Plus, the airport feels newer, and it seems less crowded.

3. Use a gray bag - I used to travel with fancy luggage, but now I like Tumi. I get gray suitcases instead of black so that I can pick them out easily at the baggage claim.

4. Packing tip - I have two sets of toiletries packed, so one is always ready to go. And I use special plastic envelopes for shirts so that they don't get wrinkled.

5. Air necessities - My Sony (SNE) Vaio computer and a couple of DVDs. I've been watching the latest season of 24 and the HBO series Rome.

6. Just in case - Bring a one-day kit in case you lose your luggage or your flight is canceled. All you need is a small bag with one shirt, a mini toiletry kit, and other essentials.

7. Sleep aid - For long flights I always bring Nytol in case I cannot fall asleep.

8. Best break - Skiing is my favorite sport, so for vacation I go to Vail two or three times a year. The best month to go is probably February, when you have great snow and not that many people.

9. Ski gear - The best place in Vail to buy ski gear is a place called Gorsuch. They have the best boots, ski suits - everything. Personally, I love Rossignol skis. Every year they come up with great designs, great technologies. And Oakley is very good for goggles.

10. Favorite hotel - The Four Seasons George V in Paris is one of my favorites. The rooms are beautiful, the bed linens are wonderful, and service is great.

11. Best bar - The Dorchester hotel in London has an incredible bar. They rethought the whole bar, and now they have new glassware for each type of cocktail. They've made it more of an experience.

12. Local secret - Everyone who visits Mexico City should go to Puntarena, one of the city's great restaurants. It's incredible what the chef there is doing with seafood.  To top of page