January 4th, 2017
Concai dei Marini is located in south western Italy. It is on the hilly coast, between Amalfi and Furore. In the Middle Ages it was trading base of the Republic of Amalfi.
An this is from the same angle the above photo was taken many years ago.
We were traveling from Terracina where we had spent a great week-end. If you want to check that post click on September, 2016 and scroll down to the 6. Driving in the Costa Amalfitana is an experience. The driver will not be able to do any sight seeing. It is a drive where the driver has to drive. We did it but my friend, Judith, had done it plenty of times.
We arrived at Hotel Belvedere, located at Via Smeraldo, 19, 84010. This hotel offers all rooms looking towards the Tyrrhenian Sea. I had already been in touch with the Manager and Owner Mr. Antonio Barbero. My friends have been staying there for a long time so it was like coming home. Their website is http://www.belvederehotel.it.
The inside of the hotel was comfortable and every day at 7 p.m. we would meet in the lobby for a little drink before dinner.
The Belvedere has a salt water pool….and yes they have elevators or plenty of steps for those who want to keep in shape after all the dining and wining.
The views from Hotel Belvedere are spectacular. We met people that have been going there for so many years at the same time. August is a big vacation month for Europeans.
In the mornings we would sit on the terrace overlooking those amazing views and soon the sea would be filled with boats and yatchs of all sizes.
And Giuseppe, the Maitre d’ was always there to welcome us breakfast, lunch and dinner.
It seems like everywhere we went in Italy there were fireworks, a celebration! Same thing happened in Conca dei Marini where the boat parade and fireworks began early in the evening.
Jumping into the Tyrrhenian Sea was an experience. Looking at the rocks under the water….I was freaking out, but peer pressure won and I jumped just like everyone else.
Food is coming next….
Concai Dei Marini “For the Amalfi people who go to paradise, the Day of Judgement will be a day like any other day.” Italian Writer, Renato Fucini
July 18th, 2016
A week-end is not enough, but that is all we had. You certainly need a few more days when visiting Montreal, Canada. Even though I live at the beach and this is a destination for many, for some of us getting out of town is definitely the thing to do when the beaches get too crowded. Summer travel is great. Everyone does it. I was reading an article the other day that you should try to visit a new place every month. I am trying to, and it does not have to be far away, but if you can do it please do because traveling inspires you to explore, to see the world for what it really is, regarding of the news of the day.
The Hotel Gault is located at 449, Rue Sainte-Helene, Montreal, QC, H2Y 2K9 Tel. 514-904-1616 or 1-866-904-1616 Website? http://www.hotelgault.com
As you can see from the photo taken outside of Hotel Gault, its architecture is classic. They mentioned that it is “Houssman architecture influenced by contemporary Paris”. Napoleon III brought Baron George-Eugene Haussman to bring order and structure to the chaotic, cramped Paris.
Very modern inside. The hotel showcases contemporary art from local Quebec and Canadian artists.
The hotel only has about 30 or 35 rooms. Ours was the apartment. Room 410. Huge. It really was like an apartment. Very comfortable with good lighting.
I am giving a shout to the staff and to the hotel guests. Looking for my key in my pocketbook I left my wallet in a cubby by the hall. A few hours later I got a call saying a hotel guest had returned it to the Front Desk. I had no idea I had left it so you can imagine how appreciative I was.
Hotel Gault is open to the public for dining…breakfast, brunch and lunch. The guests have 24 hour service.
Needless to say we had great service and the location was perfect. We could walk to all the cafes, restaurants, and shops. Loved Old Montreal!!
September 11th, 2015
If you had told me at the beginning of the summer that I would be going to Iceland on Labor Day, I would have thought you were crazy. It really was not on my bucket list, even though for many it is. Going to Iceland has gotten more popular than ever. It is a destination, whether you are just staying there to enjoy what this beautiful island has to offer or if you decide that on your way to Europe you might want to make a stop-over.
Trying to fly the most direct route was easy. From Rehoboth Beach, Delaware, our choices for airports are BWI or Philadelphia. I decided to go on WOW from BWI, a direct flight of about 6 hours, to Keflavik which is the main airport in Iceland. From there I booked my transfer to the hotel through the Gray Line, http://www.grayline.is, to the capital city of Reykjavik.
I had no idea what WOW Air was. This is an Icelandic low-cost airline that flies to Iceland from a number of European cities and started to fly from the U.S. this year. They fly from Baltimore, BWI, and from Boston. They told me that they are adding more cities. It has become very popular because of the low fares. You can buy extra room so you are more comfortable. The airplanes are new, the staff is beautifully attired and very friendly. You can either bring food onboard or you may also buy prepared sandwiches and other treats. Everything you have to buy, including a bottle of water. They have iPads for rent, as well.
This particular plane was the one I was about to board. Its name was Freiya…Nordic Godess of Love. A good start, I think.
We were suddenly awaken so that we could see the Northern Lights from the plane. Sorry, not able to get photos.
I arrived at 5:30 a.m. their time. To exchange US dollars to the Icelandic Krona you can do so by using the ATM, when you arrive, while waiting for the luggage. Also, there are more ATM machines right before you exit the building. There is a bank with no commission taken which might be easier if you do not want to use the ATM.
Rainy, cloudy, windy…..that was the weather the whole week there. But we managed to do the most important things. Iceland is one of those places that you need to do all the outdoor activities. You will also have plenty of time for shopping, dining, and dancing.
Alda Hotel has a large lobby, it is very colorful and modern. A retro look. It is located in Downtown Reykjavik.
Alda Hotel is located at Laugavegur 66-68 in Reykjavik. It is only one year old. Owned by a local tax lawyer who also has other businesses in town. Alda Hotel is vey modern. It only has 4 floors and 65 rooms. Website? http://www.aldahotel.is.
There is the Barber Bar. And the Chocolate Bar.
Laugavegur street is a main street in Reykjavik. Shops, restaurants and bars are located on this street. Alda Hotel is located in the quietest part of the street. Very convenient because all you have to do is walk out of the hotel and you are just ready to explore Reykjavik which by the way, it is very walkable. You will not get lost.
Alda Hotel has a Barber. It is unisex and very busy.
I was totally surprised when after checking in they gave me a Smart Phone for my personal use while in town.
My room was on the 4th floor. The rooms on this floor have balconies with a panoramic view. Between clouds and rain, here is one photo of the view from my balcony.
Here are some of the photos of my room. Very comfortable with a large modern bath.
Alda Hotel offers breakfast. I like to get out and about and try all the local restaurants but on my last day I did try it….the music was playing from the old fashioned record player.
The dining room was comfortable with plenty of light and breakfast for everyone.
Weather in Iceland is unpredictable. Make sure you take a raincoat because it does rain a lot. Some of the locals mentioned that at times you can get different weather events in one single day. While visiting during the first week in September it rained almost every day. I suggest you book your tours as soon as you can. I used the Gray Line above mentioned and they were great.
More posts from Iceland coming up….Have a good one…start planning your trip. Iceland is the hottest place to visit now. The staff at Alda Hotel was very helpful and friendly.
The Northern Lights are back at this time of the year. The Reykjavik International Film Festival is at the end of September through the beginning of October.
August 6th, 2015
They say that during summer week-ends Ocean City, Maryland hosts between 320,000 and 345,000 vacationers. Up to 8 million visitors annually. Businessman Isaac Coffin built the first beach-front cottage in 1869 in order to receive paying guests. Guests would arrive by stage coach and ferry. The idea was to fish off the shore, and to enjoy the beautiful and long strip of sandy beach. As it happens, soon after, others followed his lead and built houses on the strip of sand. Then the development came as businessmen were attracted to the area. Two hundred and fifty lots were cut into it; a corporation was formed to help with the development of the land. And, the corporation stock of 4,000 shares were sold for $25 each. The rest is history.
There is plenty to do in Ocean City. The beach is so wide and very clean. Early in the a.m. already visitors choose their spots. Umbrellas up and they are all good to go.
I was spending 24 hours in O.C. with my friend, Cindi. She and I were going to enjoy some of the activities that visitors love in this coastal resort. We were staying at the Sahara Motel. Oceanfront at the Boardwalk’s edge. The Sahara Motel is located at 19th St. and Boardwalk. It does have a very popular Cafe open for breakfast and lunch. Tels. 410-289-8101, 1-800-638-1600. Website? http://www.saharamotel.com.
The Sahara Motel is a sister motel to: Beachmark Motel, Tides Motel, Executive Motel, and Empress Motel & Apartments. You can choose oceanfront, oceanview, poolside, west or tower building. To see the other motels, please visit http://www.bestmotels.com.
The Ocean City Boardwalk is 2 1/4 miles. Early in the a.m. walkers, bikers, and joggers take the opportunity to exercise while having the best view in town.
Sand Sculpting in OC
Just remember to touch at the end of the boardwalk to make sure your walk counts.
Turning around we went off for another 2 1/4 miles. The Boardwalk was waking up.
You can still find some of those cottages that make you say Oh, So Cute!! On the Boardwalk!
If you get tired of walking the Boardwalk, hop on the tram. $3/person one way, but there are other deals available if you are spending the week. Please visit http://www/ocbound.com/boardwalk-tram.
The 42nd Annual White Marlin Open takes place this time of the year. August 3 – 7. It is the World’s Largest Billfish Tournament with a purse of about $3.8 million dollars. This year there were 370 boasts registered. One of the activities for spectators is to go every afternoon to the Harbourside Marina to attend the weigh-in from 4 p.m. until 9:15 p.m. Balancing the tip of the scale can make you a winner of lots of money. Harbourside Marina is at 14th St and the Bay. It gets crowded. You can shop because there are plenty of vendors and you can also have something to eat and a few drinks, as well.
I bought the 2015 T-shirts but then we found a gentleman wearing one from 1988 when the purse was only $50,000.
It was a beautiful evening with plenty of boats in the marina and some were already getting ready for the next day of fishing.
The waiting was over. Only 5 boats went out on Tuesday because of the 10 foot seas. Finally, one of the boats, The Mahi, came in with a tuna. The weight was 19 1/2 lbs. If it had been 20 lbs. it would have won $12,000.
Friday, August 7th, is the last day. If you want more info., please visit http://www.whitemarlinopen.com/info/for-spectators.
Late night dinner at Longboard Cafe located at 6701 Coastal Highway was a good choice. They are open for lunch and dinner. A casual atmosphere, you may eat outdoors on their deck or inside. Tel. 443-664-5639. Website? http://www.longboardcafe.net.
We sat at the better where we were able to see a very fast and busy bartender doing his best to keep everyone very well hydrated.
Chris Button was entertaining the patrons and he was excellent.
A Grilled Caesar for Cindi and I…it was good and plenty for sharing.
Halibut Mediterranean style for me with tomatoes, artichoke hearts, capers, lemon, wine and garlic pan sauce. Nice white fish with a mild flavor. Fish comes in fresh every day.
Cindi’s Wild Caught Salmon Filet was also very good…teriyaki sriracha lacquer, field greens, avocado, roasted corn, grape tomato, and a balsamic drizzle.
No need for dessert…
Getting up at 4:00 a.m. on Wednesday to go to the inlet and wish all those boats good luck was tough. But we did it. Hundreds of boats went out on Wednesday.
Walking the OC Boardwalk to get energy for breakfast at Barn 34 located at 3400 Coastal Highway. Tel. 410-289-5376. Website? http://www.barn34oc.com.
Mary Anne, Mike, and Michael….The Lawsons!! Great to chat with them and to see them doing so well. Barn 34 is open year-round for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. It is casual…with a very friendly staff.
Cindi had The Beach Babe…Scramble eggs with sauteed onions, potato, red peppers, chorizo, stuffed into a flour tortilla, and topped with salsa and cheese. Yum!!
I was sold the moment I heard that one of their specials was the Fried Green Tomatoes Benedict…..So delicious, the tomatoes perfectly cooked and seasoned. Grits!!
It was time to head back to Rehoboth Beach….24 Hours in OC went by so quickly but that happens when you are in good company and having fun. Until next time!! Thanks Cindi!
July 7th, 2015
Not sure if you got stuck in one of the traffic jams this holiday week-end. If you did, I feel your pain. Some of us that live here year-round take a road trip to other towns in Southern Delaware, where life is a little more calm during these holiday week-ends. My destination with my neighbor, Chris, was the town of Milford, Delaware, known as The Heart of Kent and Sussex. It is just less than half hour from Rehoboth Beach going north.
Milford is a community with respect for its past and great promise for the future. It is the gateway to Southern Delaware.
For some years, Downtown Milford has been going through a revitalization, which brings residential streets in small towns back to life. It has coffee shops, art galleries, restaurants, and a Riverwalk.
The Mispillion Riverwalk is a greenway space that preserves the town’s waterfront. Milford has over 2 centuries of shipbuilding. At one point there were 7 shipyards, located along this walk. And, between 1680 and 1927 they produced over 600 wooden sailing ships.
The displayed boat sculptures around town are all decorated with the theme of Milford’s “River town”, “Art Town”, “Home Town”.
The inspiration was the Augusta, a private yacht built in 1927 at Vinyard Shipyard. In 2010 it was restored to its original beauty.
I grew up in a small town on the eastern side of the island of Puerto Rico. Sundays were so quiet. You could take a leisure stroll through the town and maybe not see a single person. Sundays were days for worship and family time. Arriving in Milford on Sunday brought back those memories of so many years ago. So, I took the photos of a quiet Sunday in Milford.
CAUSEY MANSION BED & BREAKFAST
I remembered that a few years ago I stopped at this mansion to take some photos. There was a “for sale” sign. Well, let’s see what happened to this historic home. First let me tell you a bit about this home. It is on the National Register of Historic Places. The original part of the house was built in 1763. The rest in 1865. It was the former home of two Delaware governors.
The address is 1 Causey Avenue, Milford, DE 19963 Tel. 302-422-0979 Website? http://www.causeymansion.com
Delaware is becoming the place to retire. Among the many benefits of living in this small state is the fact that our property taxes are low. Jan Broulik and Joe Phillips decided that moving from the Chevy Chase area to Milford was going to be just perfect. They are the new owners of the Causey Mansion. We met Jan who took us through the gardens and gave us a tour of this historic home. Later on we met Joe. Please visit the above mentioned website for more information on the history of Causey Mansion, rates, and events happening at the Mansion. You may also find Causey Mansion Bed & Breakfast on Facebook.
They moved in and then their work has been non stop. Jan loves to work in the garden and he is laying all the stone in the property. Causey Mansion is the perfect place for a wedding so they are making it just right for that special event in someone’s life.
The Boxwood is over 150 years old, from some of the rooms you can see them.
At the present time there are 4 rooms for rent. They are spacious and with their own bathrooms. Following are 3 of those rooms.
Every nook and cranny has a story, just like every piece of furniture has one, as well. The majority of the furniture is French, Japanese, and some Italian.
The Grand Piano caught our attention. It was a 1904 Steinway Grand Piano. Jan picked the music, sat down, and began to play All I Ask of You from Phantom of the Opera. He brought us to tears. The sounds were amazing. It was truly so beautiful and totally unexpected.
Causey Mansion is a Greek Revival, Georgian Style home. Governor Peter Causey modified it to Greek Revival when he lived in this house from 1849 to 1871. He served as Governor of the State of Delaware from 1855 until 1859. It is still believed that he roams around the home. He is a friendly ghost
There is a dining room with a big round table for easier conversation.
And a friendly kitchen area.
The Causey Mansion is about 5,000 square feet so you will feel comfortable and at ease in any room.
Jan and Joe are so easy to talk to. They have immersed themselves in the community and are enjoying the fact that Milford is now their home!! Please stop by to see all the work they are doing to this beautiful historic home. If you feel like getting away from it all…..then, make a reservation!!
Thanks Jan and Joe for making our day!!
June 17th, 2015
A few weeks ago two of my usual suspects and I took a day trip to Oxford, St. Michaels, and Easton….Maryland’s Eastern Shore!! Today’s weather reminded me of that trip. At times it is better not to plan. Our trip was unexpected and we had the most fun. These women are interesting, exciting, and always ready for a road trip.
We had lunch at the Robert Morris Inn, ice cream at the Highland Creamery and then stopped at a very cute shop called The Treasure Chest, located at 214 N. Morris St. Tel. 410-924-8817 They are on Facebook.
The shop opens Wednesday through Monday from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. Skipper Bags, Stained Glass, Pottery, Tervis, Joan’s Gems, Port of Oxford merchandise and much more is what Joan Nubie-Miscall offers to her customers, along with plenty of friendly conversation.
The Oxford-Bellevue Ferry is America’s oldest privately owned ferry. It was established in 1683. The 2 Debbies and I were taking it, crossing the Tred Avon River. The ferry runs 7 days a week. Please note that in November, it only runs Saturday and Sunday. There are continuous crossings every 15-20 minutes. It closes at sunset. Tel. 410-745-9023. Website? http://www.oxfordbellevueferry.com. On Facebook find it as Oxford Bellevue Ferry. Fares are subject to change. You can take your bikes, motorcycle, car or just be a walk-on passenger.
It takes no time to cross the Tred Avon River. The ferry is very small….on that day only my car and two other passengers with their bikes were on board.
The mail to St. Michaels was coming with us, as well. Oxford is a small town.
Meet my two friends. Debbie and Debbie.
Arriving at Bellevue Landing….The scenic route between Oxford and St. Michaels is one of the top 25 bicycle routes in the U.S.A.
We went directly to The Inn at Perry Cabin. This Manor Home Resort & Spa is owned by the Belmond Group. It is located at 308 Watkins Lane in St. Michaels, MD 21663. Tel. 410-745-2200. Website? http://www.belmond.com/innatperrycabin It is pet friendly.
Manicured gardens and cozy corners to take a seat and relax.
The Inn at Perry Cabin is a destination for weddings, sailing, spa relaxing treatments, and other celebrations. We decided to make ourselves at home. So much so, that we did not even take a walk in downtown St. Michaels.
Sipping Cucumber Water, we sat for the longest time enjoying one beautiful scenery and the best company.
Our day was not over….our next destination? Easton, Maryland…Stay tuned.
“Travel becomes a strategy for accumulating photographs.” susan sontag……Guilty!!
June 11th, 2015
In search again for fresh Duck Eggs, I arrived late afternoon to Black Hog Farm, located at 16371 New Rd., Lewes, DE 19958. This farm is located about 7 minutes from Lewes Beach and 20 minutes, depending on the traffic from Rehoboth Beach. Website? http://www.blackhogfarmstead.com.
Back to our roots. Farm to table, is one of the biggest trends in the culinary world today. Less processed foods and more environmentally friendly alternatives. It really is a refreshing trend that I hope gets better and better. It was about time.
As I started to drive into the farm, I saw Helen working away. The temperature was pretty nice yesterday. John, her husband, told me that they get up early and work up until 11 a.m., then, lunch. Maybe, if they feel like it, they will come back out at around 3 or so in the afternoon and continue working.
Black Hog Farm has about 4.19 acres with 60 kinds of vegetables and flowers. The farm uses sustainable growing practices. They have hazelnut trees, fig trees, persimmons, apples, pears, a (sour pie) cherry tree, and some paw-paws. Pawpaw trees, are the largest edible fruit trees native to North America. The fruit is greenish-blackish, 3 to 6 inches long The flesh is pale to bright yellow. Very tropical.
John and Helen Feliciano are the owners. They are passionate about what they do. If you are passionate about what you do, you will never work a day in your life. To know about them, please visit the website.
Helen told me that she just had a dozen fresh duck eggs, but she needed to wash them. So, I decided to walk around. There is a refrigerator on the porch…..self service, and honor system. The duck eggs are usually found there, just put your $5/dozen inside the box.
The ducks were out back in the yard at the end of the property.
The moment they saw me they started to get close. Sorry, I was not feeding them. They were pretty vocal.
Helen came out with my eggs. Look how gorgeous they looked.
Casual visits to the farm are preferred on Tuesdays and Thursdays between 2 and 5 p.m. You can always call them ahead of time any day and see if you can come by. Tel. 302-236-2437. I, actually, showed up late in the day on Wednesday.
From May to October Black Hog Farmstead offers Open Porch Dinners, from the Farm to the Table. A once a month event. Coming up on Sunday June 28th is the next Sunday dinner. These dinners start at 1 p.m. to stay with the rural tradition of years past.
A 4-course Midday Sunday Dinner, featuring everything fresh from the garden. Long table on the porch, family-style. After dinner, tours of the farm will be available so that you can appreciate the veggie beds, fruits and nut orchard….and even visit the ducks. They are already taking reservations for the June dinner. To view the menu please go to the above mentioned website. The dinners are $60/person….BYOB!!
Black Hog Farmstead is also a B & B. In season, rates are 185/night. Once again, please visit the website for more information.
John and Helen are so friendly and always happy and proud to talk about their farm.
In my own house…..the raspberries are ripening, the basil is growing, the mint…a weed, is getting thicker. I was always so proud of my fig tree. After the 2 cold winters we have had, it has been growing from the ground. Miss getting all those 900 plus figs. Oh, well, we will see what it does this year.
It is a beautiful out there…Enjoy it!!
May 28th, 2015
Oxford is one of Maryland’s oldest towns. It was the first and only port-of-entry on the Eastern Shore mandated by the Maryland legislation back in 1694.
Oxford is such a charming town. Sailors, cyclists, kayakers enjoy the scenery and the peace emanating from this quaint town. It is picture perfect and streets are lined with beautifully manicured, elegant and historic homes, framing the banks of the Tred Avon River.
On the road for the day with my friends, the two Debbies, it only took us about an hour and a half from Rehoboth Beach, Delaware. Our destination was the historic Robert Morris Inn. It is 300 years old!! Located at 314 North Morris Street (Main St.). Tel. 410-226-5111. Websiste? http://www.robertmorrisinn.com. The Inn serves breakfast, lunch, afternoon teas (by reservation) and dinner. It is open year-round.
There are 14 historic bedrooms located on the second and third floors. Adjacent to the Inn they have the Bottle Cottage…..two modern, waterfront rooms.
On this day the temperatures were a little warm but the cool breezes kept us very comfortable. Oxford is very walkable. Park your car, cycles and just walk and enjoy the beautiful town.
Robert Morris was known as the “Financier of The Revolution”. He arrived in Oxford in 1738. President George Washington was a friend. A part of Robert Morris’ residence is incorporated in the Robert Morris Inn.
A little trivia? James Michener outlined his famous novel, Chesapeake, at the Inn.
The Robert Morris Inn has been enlarged several times since its time as a private home. The murals in the dining room were made from wallpaper samples used by manufacturers salesmen, 140 years ago.
The Tavern has a slate floor that came from Vermont. Timber beams, panelled walls and open fires.
This fireplace is from the 1800s and the spot for many to have their photos taken.
It was great to see my friend, Susan Campbell. She joined our small group for an outdoor lunch. Her family owns Campbell Boatyards with 3 locations in Oxford. They are a full service, high quality marine and boat building facility. Please visit http://www.campbellsboatyards.com.
We were looking forward to the offerings of Celebrity Chef, Mark Salter, of Scottish descent.
Spring Pea & Mint Soup with Crispy Shallots was served warm. It had the perfect consistency. The peas paired with mint…a pretty good combination of flavors. I think this soup could also be served chilled in the heat of summer.
The Grilled Asparagus Salad with Panko Crusted Goat Cheese, organic greens, toasted walnuts, dried fig chutney and a blackberry balsamic vinaigrette was a signature salad dish. Perfect for summer and for those trying hard to keep their girlie figures.
Chef Salter is Scottish…so, Fish n’ Chips is another signature dish offered at this time of the year. Battered Cod, buttered peas, remoulade and shoestring fries. It was awesome!! Not in the least greasy!! Light and perfectly seasoned.
An order of the Chicken Salad Sandwich….except no bread, so it became a Chicken Salad entree with lettuce, tomato, celery, red onion, dried cranberries, and toasted almonds. Homemade chips!!
Thanks for such great service and suggestions!!
Friends are the best, and sharing a meal with them is always priceless!! No dessert…..heading towards the Scottish Highland Creamery on Tilghman St.
Note: Some info. was taken from the Robert Morris Inn’s brochure.