September 10, 2015
Nancy O'Dell is best known as the host of "Entertainment Tonight." She has traveled worldwide interviewing everyone from President Obama to Angelina Jolie and, if she can make it happen, she'll bring her children (Ashby, Carson and Tyler) with her.
"My favorite memories are of my children and my husband walking along the beaches searching for seashells and sea creatures," says O'Dell, who is based out of Los Angeles. "It seems so simple, but we do this on every Hawaii or beach trip and we love it. It just makes me happy to think of it. I could probably make 10 scrapbooks alone of all the beautiful things from nature we have found on the beach."
Her latest project is a fashion line for Evine Live, where she is aiming to keep the pieces at under $99 each. Fans may follow O'Dell on Twitter (https://twitter.com/nancyodell) and Instagram (https://instagram.com/NancyODell).
Q. Where have you traveled to that most reminded you of home?
A. I had the great pleasure of interviewing my good friend, Garth Brooks, while he was on his world tour in Dublin, Ireland, in 1994. The people there were so sweet and nice that it reminded me of home. I grew up in South Carolina. And the added bonus was that they are huge country fans, as am I.
Q. What is your favorite vacation destination?
A. The Hawaiian Islands are always our choice when it comes to a favorite destination. My family and I go pretty much every year as a family trip. There is just something so magical about Hawaii. I love the minute we get off the plane and I smell that distinctive paradise smell. It's one of my favorite places because it is so simple to plan for and we have never failed to have an amazing time. We stay on a different island every trip and every one of them has been wonderful. My daughter is a big fan of exploring around the beach, looking for seashells and sea creatures. I'm also an avid runner and there is always great scenery to look at on my daily run, so it makes staying healthy a breeze. Everything is just so peaceful and relaxing. Also, it's an easy nonstop flight from Los Angeles. We can leave LA in the morning and by afternoon we can be splashing around the beach.
Q. What untapped destination should people know about?
A. Palmetto Bluff in Bluffton, South Carolina. This past October, I spent a magical time there with one of my high school friends and her daughter, who is the same age as my little girl. Palmetto Bluff is on the coast of South Carolina between Hilton Head Island and Savannah, Georgia. It's a 20,000-acre development with a nature preserve, walking trails, a village center with river access, gas-lit walkways and wraparound porches. It honestly feels like it is from another time. There are footpaths and bike trails and we even took a boat ride through the Intracoastal Waterway and the May River and spotted lots of dolphins. We stayed at the Inn at Palmetto Bluff, which was so relaxing and is absolutely gorgeous. And the Southern food is yummy!
Q. What was the first trip you took as a child?
A. When I was fairly young, probably about 6 years old, my parents took my sister and me to the Grand Canyon. I remember it being very hot. What I remember most from that trip is my Dad constantly wanting to take pictures of us and my feeling he was getting too close to the edge to do so. I just remember feeling like he was going to fall into the canyon and I was so worried. So I think I need to revisit the canyon now that I am older and cameras are better!
Q. Where are your favorite weekend getaways?
A. My favorite weekend getaway is to the Bacara Resort in Santa Barbara. It's a quick drive from Los Angeles and it is one of the most beautiful resorts I've ever seen. It's so romantic, located along a beautiful California stretch, between the Pacific Ocean and the Santa Ynez Mountains. The views you can enjoy while having dinner are beyond gorgeous. Its style is Mediterranean -- our favorite. Plus, there's an amazing spa. And it holds a special sentiment for me because that's where my husband and I got married.
Q. Where would you like to go that you have never been to before?
A. I haven't been to Australia yet. I want to see the Sydney Opera House, Bondi Beach, the Great Barrier Reef and Great Ocean Road. I'm looking forward to visiting one day.
Q. What would be your fantasy trip?
A. I've always dreamed of going to Bora Bora and spending a week in one of those huts over the water where you can just jump off your balcony and swim. I think that will be an anniversary trip with my hubby someday.
Q. What is your worst vacation memory?
A. My worst vacation memory would be from just a few years ago. I was in Hawaii and we'd been swimming all day long in the pool and at the beach. I had put conditioner in my hair and wrapped it in a bun. The waves crashed on the back of my head and then we went for a ride in a convertible. By the end of the day, my hair was so tangled because of the sand and chlorine that it took two full bottles of conditioner and hours to untangle it.
(Jae-Ha Kim is a New York Times bestselling author and travel writer. You can respond to this column by visiting her website at www.jaehakim.com. You may also follow "Go Away With..." on Twitter at @GoAwayWithJae where Jae-Ha Kim welcomes your questions and comments.)
Published: Thursday, September 10, 2015
Author: Jae-Ha Kim and Tribune Content Agency