By Jae-Ha Kim, Tribune Media Services
Celebrity Travel by Jae-Ha Kim
9:30 AM EDT, September 30, 2013
Though she was born into rock royalty, Wendy Wilson says she never felt she deserved fame. That was reserved for her superstar father, Brian Wilson of the Beach Boys. But neither she nor her older sister, Carnie, could resist pursuing a career in music. As one third of the singing group Wilson Phillips, Wendy toured the world. The group's latest effort is the DVD "Live From Infinity Hall," which includes covers of such songs as "Monday Monday," "California Dreamin'" and "Wouldn't It Be Nice." Wilson, 43, resides in California's San Fernando Valley with her husband and four children.
Q. What is your favorite vacation destination?
A. Definitely Kauai, which is known as the "Garden Isle."
Q. To someone who was going there for the first time, what would you recommend they do during their visit?
A. I absolutely recommend hiking at the Sleeping Giant on the eastern shore. It has gorgeous trails and views.
Q. What untapped destination should people know about?
A. There's this remote place in Thailand called Koh Phangan that's amazingly gorgeous. It was the island in the movie "The Beach."
Q. What was the first trip you took as a child?
A. The first trip that I can remember was to Holland when I was two years old. I remember feeding the horses and watching the windmills turn. People spoke Dutch, and I liked hearing their language.
Q. Where are your favorite weekend getaways?
A. If I could get away, it would probably be to Napa Valley, Calif., for some wine-tasting, or Cabo San Lucas for some sunning.
Q. What are your favorite hotels?
A. I like the Four Seasons (http://www.fourseasons.com), Ritz-Carlton (http://www.ritzcarlton.com), Mayfair (http://www.mayfairhotels.com/) and the Peninsula (http://www.peninsula.com). I'm a sucker for five-star hotels.
Q. What are your five favorite cities?
A. New York City, Tokyo, Rome, Chicago and Nashville.
Q. Where have you traveled to that most reminded you of home?
A. Sydney, Australia, because of the similar weather. Nothing really is like California, actually. We are in our unique bubble.
Q. Where would you like to go that you have never been to before?
A. I would love to visit India. I think I would have a spiritual experience there. I also would love to go to Scotland. Our ancestors are from there.
Q. When you go away, what are some of your must-have items?
A. I like to bring my own shampoo, face wash and aromatherapy candles. I can sleep on just about any bed or pillows, as long as they are clean!
Q. What would be your dream trip?
A. My fantasy trip would be with my husband and four kids in Tuscany, Italy. We would cook delicious Italian dinners every night and stay in our own villa with every amenity known to man. By day we would bask in the sun and swim in the warm clear sea. We would go on long winding bike rides, too, and cuddle by a fireplace at night with strong cappuccinos.
Q. What are your favorite restaurants?
A. I am thrilled with any good Mexican restaurant! I really like Loteria (http://loteriagrill.com/) and Poquito Mas (http://www.poquitomas.com/). I love Katsuya (http://www.sbe.com/katsuya) for Japanese food.
Q. What is your guilty pleasure when you're on the road?
A. My only guilty pleasures while on the road are eating salmon, which my husband hates, and taking bubble baths.
Q. What kind of research do you do before you go away on a trip?
A. When I'm on tour, we rarely get to stop and see the scenery. But when I am taking a family vacation, my husband and I like to buy guidebooks to learn about the town we are visiting. We try to hit every landmark and tourist attraction possible and we sometimes like to imagine ourselves living there. I also ask friends if they have been there before for their tips.
Q. What is your worst vacation memory?
A. My family traveled to Maui one summer. We arrived at our rental house after a long day of travel only to find a large centipede in the middle of the bed. I had a hard time sleeping on that trip. Sometimes I think that hotels are the way to go!
(Jae-Ha Kim is a New York Times bestselling author and travel writer. You can respond to this column by visiting her website at http://www.jaehakim.com. You may also follow "Go Away With..." on Twitter at @GoAwayWithJae where Jae-Ha Kim welcomes your questions and comments.)
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