Category Archive: RT

Chickasaw Country: 9 Spots Well Off the Beaten Path

Chickasaw Country is steeped in history, culture, beauty and natural wonders. Well off the beaten path in Tishomingo, , are several interesting attractions. Here are 9 essential places and things to see while in Tishomingo: Chickasaw National Capitol The Victorian, gothic-style building served as the Chickasaw Nation Capitol until Oklahoma statehood. The largest exhibit in the 8,000 square foot building focuses on Chickasaw government history from 1856-1907. Accurate replicas of Chickasaw Governor Douglas Johnston’s office and the National Secretary’s vault are key exhibits. The building’s historic significance and unique architecture led to its inclusion in the National Registry of Historic Buildings. Guided tours are available. The Chickasaw Bank The Chickasaw Bank Museum served as the Chickasaw Tribal bank from 1898 until 1902. Thanks to the Johnston County Historical Society, it has been restored into a museum filled with historical memorabilia […]

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Hotel Review: Hotel Giraffe, NYC

Hotel Giraffe Address:  365 Park Avenue South (at 26th Street), New York City Value Luxury Rating:   (out of 3 hearts) Features:  Located in the recently named NoMad area of New York City (North of Madison Square Park), Hotel Giraffe is conveniently situated between midtown and downtown Manhattan. The hotel, part of the Library Hotel Collection, offers a generous package of complimentary amenties including continental breakfast buffet each morning (served 7-10:30 am weekdays, and till 11 am on weekends), wine and cheese reception every evening (5-8 pm), wi-fi throughout the hotel, reading material (books, magazines, newspapers), DVD library, bottled water in guestrooms, and passes to New York Sports Club (various locations throughout Manhattan, closest one is three blocks away). Price Range:  A search of room rates for April 2015, show rates starting at $287 night. Check for specials and promotional rates. Personal Notes:  Hotel Giraffe […]

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Hotel Review: The Kimberly, NYC

The Kimberly Address:  145 East 50th Street (50th Street between Lexington and 3rd Avenue, Midtown), New York City Value Luxury Rating:   (of 3 hearts) Features: Located in the heart of the midtown, The Kimberly is an upscale property that is well situated for business, shopping, or just a sightseeing getaway. The 192 European-styled rooms, most of which are suites, feature flat screens and satellite TV, kitchen or kitchenettes with microwave, refrigerator, coffee maker, sink and untensils; robe and slippers, electric shoe-shiner, complimentary water, and the expected upscale bathroom amenities. Some rooms have balconies and jacuzzi tubs. Price Range:  Low winter rates range from $160 night for a deluxe guest room to $223 for an executive 1-bedroom suite. Rates jump up in spring to $430-550, and if you can bear the heat of summer, drop down to $320-440. (Prices based on a random […]

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Changing of the Guard at Presidential Mansion in Athens

The Presidential Mansion is located across the street from Athens’ National Gardens, and I happened upon it at the changing of the guard. Called the Evzoni, the guard is an elite ceremonial unit drawn from the Greek Army, and members are usually identified early in the military career while in basic training. The Evzoni are responsible for guarding the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, the Presidential Mansion, and the gates of the guard’s camp. The Evzoni are easily recognized by and are a bit famous for, their traditional uniform which dates back to the Ottoman occupation of . the everyday uniform is a Farion (a scarlet fex with a black tassel), Doulamas (a navy blue tunic), and Periskelides (white woolen stockings, two pairs are worn) with Anapastos (a type of garter to hold the stockings in place). The shoes they wore we […]

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Hotel Review: Cherry Wood Bed, Breakfast & Barn, Yakima Valley

Cherry Wood Bed, Breakfast & Barn Address:  3271 Roza Drive, Zillah, Washington (Yakima Valley) Value Luxury Rating:   (out of 3 hearts) Features:  Set on a working farm in the Yakima Valley,  Cherry Wood Bed, Breakfast & Barn offers overnight accommodations in 22-foot teepees. This specialty bed and breakfast has barbeque grills, compact refrigerators, separate super-clean and private water closets, along with an open-air shower to round out its amenities. The property is horse and dog-friendly, and the teepees have a special bed in your teepee so your dog can sleep right along with you. No children permitted. Price Range:  $245/night based on double occupancy. Full breakfast included. Cherry Wood is open during the “season”, generally from late spring into early fall. Reservations required; make them early as they book up for the season quite quickly.   Personal Notes:  I’ve been interested in […]

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Hotel Review: Shangri-La Rasa Sayang Resort & Spa, Malaysia

Shangri-La Rasa Sayang Resort & Spa Address:  Batu Ferringhi, 11100 Penang, Malaysia. About a 45 minute drive from the Penang airport, and about a 20 minute drive from Georgetown. Value Luxury Rating:   (out of 3) Features:  The 5-star Shangri-La Rasa Sayang Resort & Spa is set on 30-acres of beachfront and boasts gardens featuring over 133,000 varieties of plants, trees, and shrubs. Regional artwork can be found located around the grounds and interior spaces. Accommodations are situated in two wings, the family friendly Garden Wing (189 rooms) and the exclusive Rasa Wing (115 rooms). Decor in both is a traditional Malay style blended with contemporary chic, with every modern convenience worked in. Rooms feature the expected upsale amenities (bath products from L’Occitane), air conditioning, wifi, and more. The resort has three swimming pools (one adult only), a par 3 pitch-and-putt golf course […]

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Hotel Review: The Banjaran, Ipoh, Malaysia

The Banjaran Address:  No 1, Persiaran Lagun Sunway 3, Sunway City Ipoh Value Luxury Rating:   (2 out of 3 hearts) Features: Situated in a 16 1/2 acre valley, The Banjaran Hotsprings Retreat is surrounded by Mother Nature at her finest – limestone hills, rainforest, geothermal hot springs, caves, and waterfalls. It’s the perfect setting for a getaway, whether that’s a structured program of health and wellness, a relaxing stay with pampering spa treatments. or a romantic escape, providing a sanctuary from the busyness of everyday life. (But don’t panic, complimentary wi-fi is available throughout the property, should you prefer to keep connected with your world.) The resort features 25 air conditioned Garden and Water Villas, conveniently located around the Spa and Wellness Center, and a variety of natural treatment options. Some of those treatment options include: Geothermal Pools – Located alongside the geothermal lake, […]

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Tokyo: 12 Things I Didn’t Know Until I Got There

I love researching travel.  I love reading guide books, checking out travel blogs, looking at photos on Pinterest, and pretty much everything about the process of learning about a destination.  From the massaging of flight schedules to selecting accommodations and tours, from reading restaurant reviews and learning about food trends to learning about which sights are worth visiting, it’s all a delightful challenge to me. But no matter how much you prepare yourself, there are things you will encounter that you just didn’t know before you got to your destination. When it comes to travel to Tokyo, here are the things I just didn’t know till I got there: Tokyo goes right.  In Tokyo they drive on the right hand side of the road, the vehicles are right hand drive, and in crowded spaces you stand to the left and […]

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Splendor in San Francisco: Visiting the Palace of Fine Arts

In the middle of San Francisco’s Walter S. Johnson Park, sits the Palace of Fine Arts, an easily recognizable piece of San Francisco architecture.  You’ve likely seen it in many photographs, with attractive shots both by day and by night, so you’ll want to make plans for visiting the in San Francisco, California. The Palace was designed as part of the 1915 Panama Pacific Exposition, an event hosted by San Francisco to celebrate the completion of the Panama Canal.  It was also seen as an opportunity for to rise from the ashes of the devastating 1906 earthquake and fire. A site was chosen in what is now known as the Marina District, and architect Bernard Maybeck designed the Roman-themed/Greek-styled Palace of Fine Arts.  Exposition exhibits are temporary and therefore made with collapsible materials, so the Palace was never built to last.  However, the […]

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