By Tanner Saunders
June 25, 2019
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Naomi Watts
Credit: Ilya S. Savenok/Getty Images

Naomi Watts is a busy, busy woman. Between starring in the ultra-hyped prequel to Game of Thrones and being the mother of two young sons, it’s safe to say Watts has a full plate.

But that doesn’t stop “The Impossible” actress from making sure she takes time for herself and her family to relax on a much needed vacation, or in her case, a “workcation” near set.

Watts recently teamed up with American Express to celebrate the newest benefit for Platinum Card Members: 5X membership rewards points at Amex’s Fine Hotels & Resorts collection. According to American Express Travel, 81 percent of consumers feel a three-day weekend doesn’t provide enough time to travel, so Watts wants people to change it up and embrace a “five-day weekend.”

We sat down with the British star at New York City’s Beekman Hotel, a Fine Hotels & Resorts property, to discuss where she likes to spend her five-day weekends, the secret to flawless skin in the air and on the ground, and what it’s like taking her sons, Samuel and Sasha, around the world.

Travel + Leisure: What can you not travel without?

Naomi Watts: "So I have to have a computer, obviously. My headphones and some products: The Annee de Mamiel. It’s a face balm and it stops the pores from absorbing all the bad air that you don’t want. It’s like a mask basically — it acts as a barrier and protectant. You just take it off with a hot towel before you land. And this other product called 8 Faces I like for my hair because my hair gets really static. I mean, you can often get a toothbrush on the plane."

So many people forget that a toothbrush is a good thing to have on a long-haul flight.

"Yeah, and the lipstick, the blush. Concealer for just before landing. I always like a hat in travel because I’m going to be dealing with bad hair and you can hide it a little."

How do you manage traveling for work versus traveling for yourself or with your family?

"Well, you have to make time and often you combine the two because if you’re away for long periods of time, you can’t leave your kids. And so they track along with us. It’s different every time, but they need to feel comfortable and we need to be well set up."

I’m sure your work has taken your family to some very inspiring locations.

"I’ve been lucky enough to work in some really great places where they’re really going to the other side of the world, like Thailand. I worked there for a while. The great thing about travel is that you get to see each place and different cultures, different people, different foods. Each place has its own unique story. I think it’s so important if you do have the luxury to travel, I encourage it. Some people say, ‘Oh no, my kids, we’ll leave them home until they’re well behaved enough.’ No, [my kids] they just had to come with us."

How do you personally indulge on a vacation?

"I love a massage or even a facial because your body has been stripped of all the natural moisture [after flying]. It’s very dehydrating and so, guzzle back the water as much as you can, but also if you can get a facial, and they can give you oxygen in your facial it just wakes your skin up."

Do you have any dream destinations you’d like to explore?

"I’ve done lots of travel. I consider myself well-traveled, but I’ve definitely done a lot of repetition as well with places, definitely through Europe. I finally got to go to Greece last year for the first time. It was weird that it took that long. I’d love to do Vietnam, Cambodia."

Why did you decide to partner with American Express?

"Having your old American Express card, there’s no guesswork. You just get there and if something goes wrong, you have that insurance, that backup. You know, kind of be able to call in, ‘Please help me find my luggage. Give me that late checkout because I’ve got a flight issue.’"

Where do you spend your five-day weekends?

"Recently, I went to Puerto Rico and that was about four or five days — perfect. It was beautiful."