Meet the Team: Simon
Name: Simon Hodge
Official Title: Managing Director
Unofficial Title: Head Honcho
Working for TMR: Since 2013
Window or Aisle?
Aisle – easier access to the bar!
Preferred Travelling Snack?
Does liquid count? Draught Pilsner Urquell on a Czech EuroCity train whilst travelling along the Elbe Valley between Dresden and Prague.
An Item of Luggage you Would Never Travel Without
My new snazzy laptop bag with a gazillion pockets.
Top Rail Travel Experiences
The route of the Bernina Express on “non-panoramic” trains is arguably just as good as the tourist service, where you can roll down the windows and take glare-free photos and videos. During a recent trip I even managed to travel in an open-air carriage which was my all-time favourite experience – the warm sun, mountain air and unbelievable scenery on the way into St Moritz! Another great experience was taking the overnight train from Warsaw to Moscow – including a change of bogies at the Belarus border, and waking up in mother Russia the next morning.
Favourite Rail Journey:
Coastal Pacific train from Picton to Christchurch on New Zealand’s South Island – endless beautiful scenery and an outdoor carriage to breathe in the sea air, and even spot the occasional whale!
Ticino, the Italian-speaking part of Switzerland. It is like an orderly version of Italy, everything positive about Italy but with Swiss efficiency! Add the landscape of lakes and mountains, warm climate and friendly cities into the mix and it’s my perfect holiday destination.
My long-standing personal favourite has been the Fairmont Le Montreux Palace on Lake Geneva – unparalleled views across the lake, a fantastic spa with indoor and outdoor pool, breakfast to die for, and in one of my favourite countries. A close second would be the Adlon Kempinski in Berlin, right opposite the Brandenburg Gate – stylish and sophisticated without being snobby or stuffy.