Sleepless in Seattle

I know that it’s cool to say that you don’t like to visit tourist traps. But I’ll let you in on a little secret: I enjoy tourist traps, which is why when we took my mother on her first trip to Hawaii, we went to Honolulu. And when you’re traveling with a little kid to Seattle, it’s fun to re-visit attractions like the Space Needle through their eyes.

Chicago (My Kind of Town)

Our kid likes to travel. He has taken high-speed KTX trains in Seoul, played in New York City’s Central Park and fed dolphins in Paradise Island (Bahamas). All of that was amazing. But it’s wonderful having a first-rate destination with skyscapers, museums and all the dining choices right in our own back yard. We’ll be back, Chicago, because we can’t quit you.

Staycation is all I ever wanted

Every year around my birthday, my family and I like to enjoy a staycation in Chicago. For me, it’s a chance to return to my stomping grounds in the city where I grew up. Before my parents realized their immigrant dream of buying a house in the suburbs, we lived in Chicago. I went to school, learned to parallel park and got my first big newspaper job there. For my husband and son, spending a long weekend in Chicago is an opportunity to visit some of the world’s first rate museums, dine at some amazing restaurants and go for a swim with a view of the city’s gorgeous skyline.

Where to stay in … Florida’s Panhandle

The WaterColor Inn & Resort, named for the small planned town it fronts on the Panhandle’s charming Route 30A (between Destin and Panama City) is one of those hotels that has had a surprisingly good reputation from the start, for no particular reason. The proof is in the fact that everytime you try to book a stay, the rates are astronomical. That is, if you can even get a room. Hassle! Just to make a visit more difficult, you can no longer fly nonstop to the region. Already, you’re wondering: Why not just go to the Caribbean?

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Where to stay in … Scotland

My favorite hotel in Edinburgh is the Malmaison, which is located in the Leith district. Trendy but not precious, the hotel has all the comforts of home and the hipness of the latest club or bar. You’ll also find a United Nations of restaurants within blocks of the hotel. But be sure to make reservations. I tried getting a table for dinner on a Saturday night and had to really search for a place that could fit me without a multi-hour wait.

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