By Jae-Ha Kim, Tribune Media Services
8:17 PM EDT, October 18, 2011
As the lead anchor on HLN's "Morning Express with Robin Meade," Meade is known for her reporting and interviewing skills. What may surprise some viewers is that she's a singer too. Her debut country CD "Brand New Day" is available at Target and on iTunes.
"I spent a lot of weekends and vacation days driving from Atlanta to Nashville to write and record my album," said Meade, who lives in Atlanta. "In Nashville, you can walk from honky-tonk to honky-tonk, and every single one you walk into has a fantastic live band. You might be at one place, look over and realize Lady Antebellum is jamming to the no-namer onstage.
Q: What is your favorite vacation destination?
A: I've recently fallen in love with St. Thomas. It's so convenient. It's the U.S. Virgin Islands, so you aren't standing in line forever at customs like you would be if you were going to other tropical locations. Your money works there just like it does on the mainland, obviously. And the plane flight is pretty short, yet you land a world away from where you first started. St. Thomas is home to Magens Bay, one of the most beautiful beaches in the world. And you're a hop, skip and a ferry ride from St. John, another U.S. Virgin Island with beaches that aren't so crowded or populated. My favorite thing to do for vacation there is to rent out a villa from vrbo.com or homeaway.com. You get complete privacy, but then can head over to the hot spots for a night out.
Q: Can you tell us about some of your favorite quick getaways?
A: As much as we can, my husband and I take off for Lake Sinclair in Georgia. It's about 100 miles outside Atlanta, which is a perfect distance for a weekend getaway. It's not fancy. What we like best is that it's lake country. You get on a pontoon boat and slide into some reset-zone in your brain. I joke it's the "no-makeup zone" for me and a chance to just do nothing but stare at the water. The nearby town of Milledgeville features antebellum homes with the kind of columns you picture in old Southern towns.
Q: What is your favorite hotel?
A: I love the Ritz-Carlton (ritzcarlton.com) in St. Thomas. The service is incredible.
Q: Name some of your favorite cities.
A. Chicago. I love the food, spirit of the people and architecture. I used to live in Miami when I was a reporter and anchor in my early 20s, and I love how it's such a mash of cultures. And I'm not joking when I say, it seems like everyone is beautiful, tan and toned. What's cool about Miami is that you can move from one area of the city to another and feel like you've gone from one culture to another: There's fantastic people-watching to be done on any beach there, for sure. Another favorite of mine is New York City. You have access to so much there, whether it's fashion, shows, music, stars. ... It's like everything comes to you in that city.
Q: Where would you like to go that you have never been?
A: There are two places I'd like to go if I could go long enough to actually acclimate to the time change. One would be Australia. The second would be Italy. Just to see the views and taste the food and enjoy the culture.
For more from the reporter, visit jaehakim.com.
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