Matt Donnelly writes about the social and celebrity event scene for the Los Angeles Times. A fan of creative people and cocktail attire, he thrives in his natural habitat: parties. He lives in Hollywood, where in his free time he attempts Goop recipes and watches 30 Rock. We unleash him on Proust.
The in-flight film you hope for: I actually prefer television on demand, like 30 Rock or Parks and Recreation, so I can watch past episodes for about the 47th time.
The last book you took on holiday: Jonathan Franzen’s The Corrections. I’m trying to freshen up since the film version is coming.
You tend to pack too many…: Staples like denim, button-downs and blazers. Those could always use a severe edit but I can’t bring myself to take them out of the suitcase.
Your idea of travel happiness: Uninterrupted sleep in transit. This is impossible, so perfect travel happiness is a lot of free alcohol.
Your idea of travel misery: Children.
Your favorite quality in a hotel: Doesn’t it all come down to towels?
What do you appreciate most in a travel partner? Silence, humor and an abundance of medication.
What is your greatest extravagance while abroad? Good wine.
What is your favorite journey to take? Returning to Los Angeles from my hometown, Philadelphia. That’s the leg of the journey when I’m grateful for the small things, like palm trees and architecture and abnormally attractive people.
What is your greatest fear abroad? The language barrier in emergencies.
Which historical world traveler do you most identify with? The very historically known Zane Lamprey, host of the international drinking docu-show Three Sheets.
What is the travel habit you most deplore in yourself? Asking the wrong stranger one question on a plane. After you open that door, it’s like putting toothpaste back in the tube.
What is the travel habit you most deplore in others? Entitlement. Or people who can sleep, uninterrupted, in transit.
In what travel situations do you lie? If I break something in the hotel room, or if I miss a [flight] connection.
When and where were you last happiest? Checking into the Parker Palm Springs for the film festival. It’s still the ’70s within those walls, and always makes me feel glamorous. Actually, that’s bullshit. One of my best friends got married on Necker Island (Sir Richard Branson’s) and we basically had trained monkeys as butlers. It was once-in-a-lifetime.
What is your most treasured take-along? Sunglasses.
What is your travel motto? “One more round.”
Follow Matt on Twitter: @MattDonnelly