For Nine CEO Hugh Marks, happiness is a T-shirt and uggs

Hopefully you can get some downtime after a trip with that many time zones?

Yes, I’ll take some time off to head to our property at Berry, just to potter around the house, look after the vegies, check fences, that kind of thing. Over Easter, the extended family go to my Mum and Dad’s place at Crookwell, on top of the Great Dividing Range. It’s beautiful that time of year.

You don’t jet off somewhere exotic to unwind?

I should say, “Oh yes, I always go to Tuscany.” In truth, I love discovering more of Australia.

Does downtime include watching yet more telly?

Im always watching the telly! But we only have one television in the house.

Plane viewing habits, and all-time favourite international and Australian movies?

I’ve generally watched most things, especially box sets, so on planes it’s usually old movies, especially Academy Award winners and classics. For favourite movies, probablyBig Wednesday[a 1978 American surfing film directed by John Milius], with Gary Busey and William Katt. For Australian films,Gallipoli[1981] directed by Peter Weir. I’ve only just realised they’re similar in that they’re both about groups of boys growing up in different environments and finding their way in the world.


Mark Lee and Mel Gibson in Gallipoli, top of the list of Marks’ Australian films. Suppplied

Fitness on the road?

I like to walk. I used to jog, but I hurt my left knee playing golf in Queenstown last October.

Let us guess: cheeky boys’ golfing trip?

Guilty. I’m in a group of “dad” friends who met through Artarmon Public Primary School, which all our kids have attended over the years. We have an annual golf trip that has almost become biannual it’s so popular. We also have monthly wine club, where we meet up at someone’s house. All our partners say how nice it is to have a group of blokes laughing and relaxing at home.


Last year Marks and his mates travelled to El Questro homestead in Western Australia to go helifishing. Timothy Burgess

Do we sense a reality TV show?Real Corporate Dads of the Lower North Shore?

[Nervous laughter] We enjoy each other’s company, but I don’t think we’d be that interesting to others.

So where’s golf this October?

This year, things have got a bit controversial. Queenstown is popular with the group, butthere’s been a rebel movement to get us back down to Barnbouglein Tasmania. Then there was a sub-rebel movement to charter a private plane for 12 of us. So now we’re doing four days, going to Barnbougle, then all flying to King Island, then back to Melbourne, and on to Sydney.

Any other tours we should know about?

I go away each year with another group of about eight friends from my University of NSW days. We usually go to the races in Melbourne together. Last year we did Darwin tofish withOutback Wrangler’sMatt Wrightfor a day, then on tothat fancy lodge in the Kimberley, El Questro, to go helifishing, which was a bit extravagant, but we had a ball and caught some massive barramundi. I love travelling around Australia, especially Queensland with my family.

Lastly, what’s in your luggage?

I’m a big T-shirt fan and will wear one in the snow or blazing sun. Also a pair of uggs. My kids get embarrassed when I wear them out. But if it’s cold, I always have my uggs on.

Fiona Carruthers editsSophisticated Travellermagazine inThe Australian Financial Review.

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