Articles written by: Merilee Kern

Merilee Kern

Merilee A. Kern is a good life connoisseur who keeps her finger on the pulse of the leisure and lifestyle marketplace in search of new and innovative must-haves and exemplary experiences at all price points – the affordable to the extreme. The best of the best across all product, service and travel categories are detailed in her exclusive column, “The Luxe List,” which reaches millions of consumers and travelers each month through multiple international editorial and television syndication channels. An array of top-tier online, print and broadcast media outlets feature Merilee’s insightful and informative content. With this highly marketable and adaptable Luxe List brand, Merilee is a regular on air contributor with FOX5, XETV Channel 6 (The CW) and KUSI-TV in San Diego where she serves as a “gift guru” and consumer/travel trends expert. She also serves as a national Satellite Media Tour (SMT) spokesperson. In addition to her Luxe List endeavors, Merilee owns and operates a highly successful boutique Public Relations agency, Kern Communications (, where she serves as a senior-level publicist and spokesperson for various products, services and brands proffered by the clients she represents. Merilee has been marketing and publicizing multi-industry B2B and B2C initiatives since 1994. Over this past decade, hundreds of her articles, news items and interviews have been featured by media outlets worldwide. She is also a highly regarded marketing and PR industry expert source within the media, contributing perspective and commentary to leading media outlets. As a former fitness competitor and champion twice over, having won the title of “Miss South Florida” and “Miss Palm Coast,” Merilee is also a published author whose health-related fictional children’s title, “Making Healthy Choices – A Story to Inspire Fit, Weight-Wise Kids,” ( earned a coveted iParenting Media ‘Excellent Product’ award in both 2006 and 2007 as well as acclaim from Oprah’s personal trainer Bob Greene and media personality Sally Jessy Raphael. Merilee is also the creator of the award-winning “Kids Making Healthy Choices” smartphone APP based on her book. Merilee was a Finalist in the 3rd annual Stevie Awards for Women in Business – an international competition recognizing the accomplishments of outstanding women executives, business owners, and the companies they run, hailed by the New York Post as “the business world’s own Oscars.” Merilee holds a Master of Business Administration degree with a marketing specialty and a Bachelor of Science degree, both earned from Nova Southeastern University in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Merilee is the very definition of a renaissance woman: a savvy entrepreneur, media personality, author, journalist, publicist, athlete, health advocate, and proud mother of 2.

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California / Chefs of Distinction / Food / Wine Masters of Distinction / Wines & Spirits

San Diego Bay Wine & Food Festival Grand Tasting a Grand Slam

To commemorate its tenth anniversary, this year’s San Diego Bay Wine and Food Festival pulled out all the stops to create a memorable week-long event that that was the largest and tastiest yet. This venerable annual event has come of age, solidifying itself as one of the most highly anticipated […]

Credit Saltbox.Hotel Palomar
California / Chefs of Distinction / Destinations / Food / United States / Wines & Spirits

Saltbox Dining and Drinking: San Diego Snags Top Talent

Duly enhancing San Diego’s cool downtown scene is Saltbox, a gastro-lounge where dining, drinking, socializing and relaxing all converge for a multi-sensory respite. To kick things up a notch, the affable eatery, located lounge-level in the Hotel Palomar situated in the heart of the historic Gaslamp District, recently appointed “culinary […]

Credit Cohn Restaurant Group.Vintana 3
California / Chefs of Distinction / Chronological / Destinations / Food / United States

Stellar Vibe and Victuals at Vintana Restaurant

The Cohn Restaurant Group has done it again. The award-winning company, which now owns and operates 16 restaurants within the San Diego area and Maui, has hit a home run with one of its newer North County venues: Vintana. This eatery, uniquely located on the penthouse level of the Lexus […]

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California / Destinations / Food / United States / Wines & Spirits

Donovan’s Steak & Chop House San Diego Holds True to Tradition

While San Diego is rife with great restaurants, with new and exciting dining venues opening their kitchens seemingly by the minute, Donovan’s Steak & Chop House remains a premier eatery for locals and tourists alike. Revered for its classic ambiance replete with rich mahogany appointments, statues, fine artwork, plush décor […]

California / Chefs of Distinction / Food

Searsucker Del Mar: Where Good Eats and Good Times Meet

North County San Diego just got decidedly more chic with the recent opening of Searsucker Del Mar restaurant, the newest SoCal site for the burgeoning dining brand that’s been a Gaslamp District draw since 2010. Now the fun-and-food-loving folks in North County—an area starving for great food and fun venues—can […]

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California / Chefs of Distinction / Chronological / Destinations / Food / Hotels & Resorts / United States

Contemporary French Cuisine Elevated at Addison San Diego

As a seasoned food, wine, and travel writer with scores of restaurant stories to my credit, I’ve experienced my fair share of elegant, award-winning eateries. However, none compare to the experience I had at Addison-the signature restaurant of The Grand Del Mar in San Diego, California. At this inimitable restaurant, […]

Credit Turnberry Isle Miami
Chronological / Destinations / Florida / United States

Beguiled by Turnberry Isle Miami

In the lush and luxurious North Miami Beach Aventura neighborhood sits the award-winning, AAA Four Diamond-rated Turnberry Isle Miami. This quiet beach, golf, tennis and spa retreat sprawls over 300 perfectly manicured tropical acres replete with 100 varieties of plants and 50 bird species. Immediately upon setting foot here, I […]

California / Destinations / Food / Hotels & Resorts / United States

San Diego Scene: Opening Day at the Del Mar Races

Opening Day at the Del Mar Thoroughbred Club on July 17th is no quiet affair. It’s a thrilling event that attracts more than 45,000 race fans, socialites and those who simply love to see-and-be-seen in the scene. These folks flock to the racetrack for a kinetic atmosphere filled with fabulosity, […]

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Chronological / Writers' Tips

‘TV Everywhere’ Now Reality with Slingbox

While some people travel to escape the status quo, many simply cannot live without their favorite television programs, sports events or movies. Thanks to the TV-loving techies at Slingbox, travelers addicted to home entertainment can now enjoy it from anywhere, at any time, on a full range of popular portable […]

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California / Chronological / Destinations / Food / Hotels & Resorts / United States

Modern Mediterranean at Cusp Dining & Drinks La Jolla

If you are looking for a chic and sophisticated San Diego dining spot with an ocean view to die for, then check out Cusp Dining and Drinks. Perched high on the 11th floor of the Kimpton Hotel La Jolla, this eatery is where you come to slow down, linger over […]