Community Spotlight: La Jolla Mom – Lifestyle & luxury Travel Expert

Photo by Melissa Koehler Photography

La Jolla Mom, or better known by friends and family as Katie Dillon, is La Jolla‘s foremost and well-known lifestyle and luxury travel expert. From Hong Kong to Southern California, La Jolla Mom knows the ins and outs of luxury traveling, shopping, and dining. With an expansive social media presence, Katie has heavily influenced the way people travel with children domestically and internationally. Have we mentioned she’s written a book? Flying With Kids: Safe and Sane Air Travel With Your Baby, Toddler or Young Child compiles Katie’s personal experiences, recommendations, and safe instructions when traveling with kids. Wanting to know more about this community aficionado, we sat down with Katie for a one-on-one interview and learned that La Jolla Mom is not your typical mommy blogger.

How did Katie start her life as La Jolla Mom?
The beginning chapter of Katie’s life as a blogger began years ago when she was living overseas in Hong Kong. Like many other foreign families at the time, Katie decided to start writing a family blog. This helped keep distant relatives up to date with the entire family: Katie, La Jolla Girl (Katie’s daughter) and her husband. After moving back to La Jolla, someone suggested to Katie that she start a mom blog. From that point on, La Jolla Mom was born!

What helped La Jolla mom evolve into a luxury lifestyle and travel expert?
Katie would say this luxury travel title is purely out of “luck.” Due to her husband’s job in Hong Kong, they had the opportunity to live at the Four Seasons Hotel Hong Kong. Eventually the hotel offered Katie a chance to write a family blog for the hotel. This subsequently led to the writing for the Four Seasons Food Blog and for their magazine. From that point on, she realized that she could take her family blog and turn it into something much more.

Being La Jolla Mom comes with so many fun and rewarding experiences. What is her favorite part of the job?
Being able to meet other people! Katie tells us that blogging was a way for her to integrate quickly with the community. The community aspect has always been important for La Jolla, and Katie has helped to make that even more unique for our seaside town.

Hong Kong vs. La Jolla?
While each are extremely different cities, Katie says she is in love with both. Hong Kong is a cosmopolitan city that she absolutely loves, but La Jolla has the irresistible charming qualities that make it the perfect place to settle down and raise a family. Having said that, it also gives her a reason to travel and experience different cultures.

Her advice for families visiting La Jolla:
Katie says her top piece of advice would be to spend more time outdoors and take advantage of the endless free activities La Jolla has to offer. We agree! Many activities in La Jolla are great for the outdoors such as the Cove, Children’s Pool, the Mt. Soledad Cross, and Torrey Pines. Our year-round Mediterranean climate is one of La Jolla Mom’s favorite qualities of La Jolla which makes it such a desired destination.

It’s clear that La Jolla Mom travels with her daughter the majority of the time and her blog features a lot of child-friendly advice. What were her experiences traveling with children that motivated her to share those events and help give advice to others?
Katie says that having her daughter born in Hong Kong made it hard to fly. She had many worries about whether La Jolla Girl (Katie’s nickname for her daughter) would cry the entire time on the flight or whether she would be entertained. Somehow though, Katie learned to manage her. Having found no advice online, Katie decided to write about it and help give other flying families resources. Now in elementary school, La Jolla Girl loves traveling and has become a travel guru herself!

After our long and interesting conversation, it was time for some speed round questions!

1.Favorite place to shop locally:
Girard street – both sides.
2.Favorite restaurant in La Jolla:
For the family, Beaumont’s. For her and the husband, Whiskanladle.
3.Favorite place for drinks and to socialize in La Jolla:
George’s at the Cove.
4.Favorite destination:
Asia.
5.Favorite Hotel:
Four Seasons Hotel Hong Kong.
6.Best quality of La Jolla:
The Beaches and the good vibes. Being able to spend most of the year outside.
7. Favorite weekend getaway for locals:
A relaxing Orange County vacation at the St. Regis.

For more information about La Jolla Mom, be sure to visit her blog and follow her on Twitter @LaJollaMom & facebook.com/LaJollaMom

Photos shared from La Jolla Mom.

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Vanessa Turkeltaub
Vanessa Turkeltaub graduated from UC San Diego with a BA in Communication. She has been with Blue Book Publishers for over 5 years, and has written over five-hundred La Jolla related articles. She enjoys going to concerts, art, and traveling. (vanessa@lajollabluebook.com)

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