Writers Worldwide Share Travel Secrets
Huge splurge in Milan,
in the company brochure as an "urban retreat, an escape for
mind and body", the spa at the Hotel Bulgari in the centre
of Milan is located on the lower ground floor, and includes a
pool. Enhanced by special lighting effects, the gold and emerald
green glass mosaic designs on walls and floors create a shimmering
splendour of luxury and indulgence. You
may just want to check in for life. However, deep down, you know
that you have to go back to the madding crowd. So the best thing
is to have a treatment that prepares you for that. Try the 85-minute
Advanced Age Defier at 145 Euro, or hot stone therapy, or even
the Balinese body massage. The facials will cost 55 Euro, while
the manicure and pedicure are 35 and 45 Euro, respectively. Otherwise,
opt for a half-day session. This starts with a 25-minute ceremonial
foot massage as you sip herbal tea, and includes a choice of detoxifying,
hydrating, muscle-relaxing, energizing, or nourishing massage.
If 200 Euro sounds a lot, think of it as credit-card insurance.
Considering how more you could be spending in the same amount
of time in the nearby shopping streets, £150 is a snip!
Actually, you might prefer the whole day. The package includes
lunch and comes in at 280 Euro. The Bulgari hotel is at Via Privata
Fratelli Gabba 7b,(02 8058051/ www.bulgarihotels.com.
Roberta Kedzierski has lived in
Milan for over 10 years and is originally from Britain. She writes
for a number of US and UK publications on a variety of subjects.
Roberta's work includes milanostyle.com,
the "Thinking Allowed" column in the monthly HelloMilano
as well as having her own page on www.InItaly.com.
Bargain for your hotel
you're trying to stick with a budget, attempt to bargain with
the hotel manager on the price for your room. To determine the
going rate, check out www.biddingfortravel.com,
the website where travelers spill the beans on what they paid
at Priceline.com and which
hotel they got. If the hotel you're looking at is listed there,
simply offer the Priceline rate, minus 5% (about the commission
the hotel would have paid that agency). You'll be amazed at how
well this can work.
is an American travel journalist. She appears weekly on CNN's
Pipeline and co-hosts The Travel Show, which can be heard every
Sunday on 100 radio stations nationwide. Her new series of budget-conscious
guidebooks, the Pauline Frommer
Guides, are available wherever books are sold.
Pauline Frommer's New York City was named "Best Guidebook
of the Year" by the North American Travel Journalists Association.
Stay awake for the first
hour of an international flight...
take any sleep aid until at least 30 minutes after the flight
has taken off. Trouble with an airplane typically occurs within
the first hour after take-off and/or the last hour before landing,
and as a passenger you need to be able to respond to any type
Ameche lives in Chicago. She is the featured travel expert
on CBS 2 Chicago as well as the author of The
Woman Road Warrior, An Expert's Guide to Domestic and International
Safe, warm bus travel
safe, cheap, and practical way to move from town to town in Peru
is the bus. There are three main companies usually favoured by
tourists, and by far the safest, are Cruz
del Sur, Ormeño
and Oltursa. However there
is one thing you should know before boarding whatever bus in Peru:
the air conditioning will be on and high for the whole duration
of the travel, regardless the season and the altitude the bus
reaches. I have seen people freezing when travelling by night.
The bus usually provides a blanket, but in winter and on altitudes,
it might not be enough. Always bring socks, a shawl or a warm
sweater with you.
reports from Lima, Peru. She is the co-founder of www.expatclic.com,
an expat website for women.
She likes free museums...
next time you're waiting for a flight at Amsterdam's Schiphol
Airport, check out the free Rijksmuseum, a branch of Holland's
largest museum. It houses ten works by Dutch Masters, from Amsterdam's
Rijksmuseum, and rotating exhibits of ceramics, silverwork and
other crafts. A shop sells reproductions of jewellery, glassware
and paintings from the permanent collections. The museum is open
daily. Admission is free.
Barb Kroll and her husband, Ron,
are Canadians who publish the trip-planning website:
Don't double tip...
you are dining abroad, remember that a service charge is usually
figured into the cost of the meal or tacked onto the bill. There's
no need to add more, although in many countries it's customary
to "round up" the bill or leave some loose change. This
practice is becoming more common in the United States too, especially
for large groups, so keep your eyes open or you'll be paying twice.
Room service at hotels is another place where you'll often find
a built-in service charge.
Joan Rattner Heilman is the author
of the bestselling guidebook for older travelers, Unbelievably
Good Deals and Great Adventures That You Absolutely Can't Get
Unless You're Over 50, 2007-2008 (McGraw-Hill) Now in
its 17th edition.
A woman-friendly hotel
in Buenos Aires...
stayed at the Hotel Frossard in Buenos Aires and would like other
travelling women to know about it, too. You'll arrive at a belle
époque house-turned-hotel, where Che Guevara’s aunt
once lived (there's a buzzer system to enter). You'll ascend to
reception in a gold-filigreed elevator cage. Expect that your
room will probably mimic the size and cleanliness of a nun’s
cell. At $US30 per night with breakfast and an ever-so-helpful
staff, the Hotel Frossard, like so much of Buenos Aires, remains
friendly and affordable. Hotel Frossard is located in the heart
of the city, pleasant and well-run. Website:
is a Canadian travel writer, photographer and reviewer.
One to five stars, your
hotel choice in Amsterdam...
April 2007, I discovered an intriguing Amsterdam accommodation,
the Lloyd Hotel, www.lloydhotel.com,
awash with cultural, historical and architectural surprises. This
centenarian, six-storey former emmigrant center and youth prison
overlooking a major city canal, still boasts an industrial elegance
following its renovation and reopening as a popular cultural arts
hotel in 2004. It features rooms of one- to five-stars, so I spent
a night in each extreme. Ratings and prices of 80 to 300 Euros,
including an ample health-conscious breakfast buffet, are based
on a room’s individual measurements. All services and luxury
amenities come with every room, with only the one-star having
a bathroom down the hall, possibly shared with one or two other
guests on the same floor. No two rooms are alike in design, furnishings
or size. The Lloyd attracts many art and culture guests who often
perform and exhibit in its dramatic public spaces.
Alison Gardner is a Canadian travel
journalist and editor of Travel with a Challenge.
Bonus #8! Classical Destinations...
called, Classical Destinations,
An armchair guide to classical music. We haven't
seen another book like this one and we love the concept. Inspired
by the television series of the same name, Classical Destinations
combines three strong elements -- brilliant photographs of destinations
that inspired some of the greatest names in classical music, biographical
tales and fun facts about those composers plus helpful tourist
information about all locations. What a splendid idea. Research
cities like Venice, home of Vivaldi, Lucca, Puccini's birthplace,
as well as Helsinki to investigate Jan Sibelius's roots. Think
you'd like to visit? No problem. The best website and tourism
sources will be right there at your finger tips. This coffee table
book is the real thing -- lovely to look at and delightful to
read. Amadeus Press. ISBN 1-57467-158-8.