Ladies We Love is a monthly interview series with women from around the world that provide us with inspiration through their travels and personal stories. This month we got to know luxury travel and food writer Nicole Trilivas.
1. Nicole, Please Introduce Yourself To Our Readers? What Do You Do? Where Are You From?
[Waves] Hi! I’m a writer living in London. I’m the author of the romantic comedy Girls Who Travel, and I’m a journalist focusing on travel and food and drink (a.k.a. my favorite things). I’m originally from New York, but these days I feel very lucky to call the pretty streets of London’s Notting Hill my home.
2. As An American What Inspired Or Influenced You To Move To London?
Growing up during the heyday of Britpop, I couldn’t help but fall in love with the UK by osmosis, and after getting the chance to spend a semester in London while at university, my crush sprouted into a true love affair.
3. You Specialize In Writing About Luxury Lifestyle With Travel, Food, And Drink. What Inspired You To Concentrate On These Sectors?
For me, life is all about travel and food. As a freelance writer, I often get to decide what to write about, so of course, I’m going to choose my passions. Honestly, I could talk about travel and food all day long without getting bored.
I chose to specialize on the high-end side because I worked in that sector for many years and it’s now an area of expertise for me. (Plus, who doesn’t like a five-star hotel or a three-Michelin-starred restaurant? Well, I’m sure some people don’t, but I’m not one of them.)
4. You Are A Contributing Writer For Forbes, Your Writing Has Appeared In Many Other Big Publications, How Did You Get Involved With Forbes, Time Out London, Nytimes.com, And These Other Big Companies?
Many freelance writers start as in-house magazine staff and then transition to freelance once they have some solid contacts to pitch. Ever the wanderer, that wasn’t the direct route I took. I took the scenic route if you will. I started freelancing with zero contacts, but I did have a good knowledge of the luxury travel industry from working at a media company that specialized in luxury travel.
I was able to parlay that knowledge into some pretty solid pitches, and slowly by slowly I landed dream assignments like discovering the fantastic wines of Sicily (try Nerello Mascalese. It’s *chef’s kiss*); reviewing a new eco-hotel in Tanzania and shopping for textiles in Uzbekistan. Eventually, I was asked by an editor to become a Forbes Travel Contributor, which was pretty great.
5. As A Restaurant Reviewer For Time Out London, What Are Your Top Three Restaurants In London?
I love this question because London is such a food city. For a blowout night, I like to pretend I’m Zelda Fitzgerald at Bob Bob Ricard, which is this swanky Art Deco Russian-meets-British jewel box of a restaurant in Soho. Each table has its very own “press for champagne” button. I dream about the mushroom vareniki (stuffed Russian dumplings).
Barring India, London is the spot for amazing Indian restaurants. From family-run hideaways to avant-garde hotspots, there’s an Indian eatery for every taste and budget. I personally love Gymkhana, which does modern Indian and is always jam-packed (they have great Indian-rum-based cocktails too). Lastly, for the ambiance and setting alone I have to pick The Wolseley. Whenever someone visits me in London, I take them for afternoon tea or breakfast at The Wolseley because it epitomizes British sophistication.
6. As An American Living In London What Are The Main Cultural Differences, You Have Found Between The Two Countries?
Coming from New York City, London has a much better work-life balance. Generally speaking, you’re not expected to answer emails after hours or on the weekend. When I first moved here, I was even surprised to find that most people leave work on time. This isn’t to say that New Yorkers working harder than Londoners, it’s more than in London, the big show of ambition isn’t expected of you in the same way that it is in New York.
7. You Have Written A Successful Book Called Girls Who Travel, Can You Tell Us A Bit About The Book And What Inspired You To Write It?
Girls Who Travel is a lighthearted beach read about serial backpacker, Kika, who’s forced to trade in her life of adventure for a steady job—for the time being anyway. On a higher level, it’s about how travel becomes part of our identity and how what we learn—and who meet—on the road can change us forever. (Also, it’s a rom-com so there’s kissing, and don’t worry, there’s plenty of travel featured within too!)
I was inspired by a friend who traveled all around the world as an au pair of a wealthy family, and I thought that it would be a cool premise for a book.
8. What Piece Of Advice Would You Give To Our Readers Who Are Thinking About Writing A Book Or Becoming A Writer?
Because I’m sure you’ve heard things like ‘don’t give up’ before (but really, don’t give up. I wrote five books before getting one published), I’m going to say show up: Do your work; deliver it on time; and get a reputation as someone who is reliable and responsible. The people who make it as professional writers aren’t always the best writers: they’re the ones who get the work done.
9. Now For A Fun Question, Tell Us A Fun Fact About Yourself?
I’m a massive (and completely unapologetic) Real Housewives fan, and I think the show producers are nothing short of geniuses.
10. What Is Your Favorite Quote?
Fortune favors the brave.
Read More Ladies We Love Interviews
- Ladies We Love: Ariel of Thyme & Caramel
- Ladies We Love: Alexis Jones of I Am That Girl
- Ladies We Love: Asha Daya of Girl Talk HQ
- Ladies We Love: Zanna van Dijk
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