Jetsetter of the Month: Luxury Travel Blogger Ana Silva O’Reilly
“If I am leaving home, it has to be better.” The words of Ana Silva O’Reilly’s mother proved to be the inspiration for a lifelong decision to always travel in style, one which she graciously shares with the rest of us on her blog “Mrs. O Around the World,” described as the site to visit if you want to know where to go for your next luxury weekend or for a proper holiday getaway. Originally from Lisbon, Portugal, Mrs. O—as she is known in the travel world—now permanently resides in the English countryside with her husband (Mr. O) and takes the opportunity to travel whenever she can.
Traveling, Mrs. O says, must be in her blood since she began her jet setting adventures with her parents at just 6 months old. She continues to be drawn to the interesting places in the world. “I am personally not on a journey to go to ‘x’ amount of places or as many as possible,” she says. “For me it is all about enjoying the moment.
In her luxury travel blog, Mrs. O says she only writes about the places she has visited and loved, inspiring her readers to travel in style. “If by reading my blog a single person finds, for example, a great restaurant or hotel then I have done my job!” she says. Mrs. O also suggests making an effort to try to understand loyalty programs and select key airline and hotel programs to earn upgrades or free travel. This way, travelers can book lower fares/rates and be able to enjoy the best in air travel and accommodations.
One problem Mrs. O says she has is she is a “repeater”—she loves going to back to the destinations she enjoyed the most. For example, she must return to the United States at least three times a year. Why? “Because New York City, Miami, and California are places I need to visit at least once a year,” she says. Portugal is also at the top of the list of places she loves, not only because it is her home country, but also because she considers it a hidden gem. In fact, she and her husband have agreed they will spend a week in the south of Portugal every July, which she says is one reason he is “glad he married a Portuguese!”
Mrs. O obviously often recommends Portugal as a must-see destination, and she is also a big advocate for trips to California among her European friends and readers since “people don’t really know how incredible it can be.” The food, the hotels, the shopping, and the scenery are all on her list of why California is an ideal place to visit. Spain is another location that she tends to give a lot of attention to on her site, and “any wine-related trip … I wonder why?”
Out of all her travels, Mrs. O says the one that was the most life changing was a trip to Prague for a company conference where she sat across from a man during dinner who, four years later, became her husband. “I almost didn’t go on that trip,” she says, adding, “Good or what?”
Next on Mrs. O’s agenda are trips to the Maldives and to Doha, Qatar. She is also planning springtime trips to Spain, the US, and Mexico—and of course she and Mr. O will be making their annual trip to Portugal in July.