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Nov
17

I met the most amazing craftspeople when I was in Portland last week. Read my USA Today piece, 10 Portland makers who will make you say, “Please take my money!” and get all your holiday shopping done early!

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Travel

chef alex pasco redefines spa food at mii amo

Posted on January 12, 2016

Mii amo fig

My daughter and I were invited to spend a few days at Mii Amo at Enchantment Resort in Sedona last summer, where we indulged in simply luxurious treatments at Mii amo Spa and luxuriously simple meals by Chef Alex Pasco at Mii amo Cafe.

We were expecting healthy but boring food — it’s a spa cafe, after all — but we were so blown away by the fresh ingredients, delightful tastes and unique combinations, we ended up eating almost every meal there.

In fact, we were in such a blissful state, we decided to have a little chat with Chef Alex.

In our robes, of course. more »

eating our way through germany on our viking river cruise

Posted on December 23, 2015

Christmas markets food booth

One thing our Viking River Cruise through Germany had in common with the Christmas Markets we visited along the way was that they both gave food a starring role.

In case you missed it — or just to get in the right mood for what you’re about to see — you may want to take a minute to go back to yesterday’s post and look at my pictures from some of our favorite Christmas Markets.

more »

our viking river cruise to the christmas markets in germany

Posted on December 21, 2015

Christmas markets Germany

Visiting the Christmas Markets in Europe has always been a bucket list item for us.

So when Viking offered us our choice of a second cruise — we fell in love with them on a cruise through the South of France earlier this year — we unhesitatingly booked Germany  after Thanksgiving so we could finally make this dream come true.

Get out your calendar because, trust me, you’re going to want to start planning this trip for next year. more »

vive le food tour paris!

Posted on November 16, 2015

Le Food Tour pastry maker

In light of the tragedy in Paris, I thought it would be a good time to celebrate the city — and the people and things that make it so special. What better way to do that than through their magnificent food? I published this interview on Huffington Post when we came back from our trip in April but wanted to re-post it here in honor of our Parisian friend, Maxime Audi, who we have been thinking about constantly.

When in France, you’d be crazy not to take advantage of every opportunity to indulge in the world-renowned food. So, on our recent trip, we basically ate our way through the country.

I’ve already introduced you to the new generation of chefs in Aix-en-Provence and the exquisite French cooking we were served aboard our Portraits of Southern France Viking River Cruise.

Now, let me tell you about our post-cruise trip to Paris, one of our favorite cities, where we decided to take a food tour to get a taste of what was new. We opted for Le Food Tour, a relatively new eating/walking tour of the City of Light, because it promised an off-the-beaten-path experience. more »

swissotel berlin

Posted on November 9, 2015

Swissotel Berlin exterior

This is a sponsored post. All opinions and desires to visit 
again are totally mine.

The last time we visited Berlin was during a cruise excursion many years ago.

There was so much to do and see, we were really disappointed we only had one day to explore the city. And I remember being taken in by the unique architecture of Swissotel Berlin and wishing we could have spent the night there. more »

shorebreak hotel, huntington beach

Posted on November 6, 2015

Shorebreak couch surf art

If you want to experience an upscale version of the quintessential Southern California surf culture, you have to spend a night or two at the Shorebreak Hotel in Huntington Beach.

With its sophisticated surfer vibe, this signature Kimpton boutique hotel does what Kimpton does best — it captures and celebrates its local neighborhood while offering impeccable service and lots of amenities.

Be prepared for a lot of photos because when Michael and I were invited to stay there a couple of months ago, I couldn’t stop snapping away. more »

w hotel los angeles west beverly hills

Posted on November 4, 2015

W hotel sign

Michael and I were lucky enough to get tickets to the taping of Oprah’s Super Soul Sessions at UCLA a couple of months ago, and we decided to make a weekend out of it.

We were invited to stay at the W Hotel Los Angeles in West Beverly Hills, which is within walking distance of the campus as well as a gigantic Ralph’s, which has a Starbucks and a fantastic bakery inside. This was perfect because not having to worry about a car in Los Angeles is, just like the hotel, a luxury in itself. more »

australia, oprah-style!

Posted on October 22, 2015

Australia

After a friend pointed me to eShores the other day, I got so involved in all the possibilities for future trips that I spent way longer than I should have on the site.

Not surprisingly, I ended up in Australia, reliving my trip Down Under with Oprah and 301 fellow Ultimate Viewers. That was almost five years ago, and I still happily reminisce about it all the time.

You can read all about my Ultimate Australia Adventure, and then, hopefully, plan your own. There are lots of companies that offer tailor-made packages, and I found some great multi-centre itineraries on the eShores site that would enable you to follow our trip — well, minus Oprah, of course. more »

flying ethiopian airlines from lax – to dublin!

Posted on October 6, 2015

Ethiopian AIrlines screen

I almost turned down my invitation to The Retreat, the amazing trip I took to Ireland this summer, because I had been traveling so much and, honestly, the actual traveling part is sometimes so difficult, I wasn’t sure if I was up for another 12 hour flight even to one of my favorite places in the world.

But then Tourism Ireland offered to fly me in business class so I could test the new Ethiopian Airlines direct flight from Los Angeles to Dublin, and I was in! This is the only airline flying direct from Southern California to Dublin, so I was eager to check it out. more »

4 luxurious places to recharge!

Posted on October 5, 2015

 

Paradise Island Resort

I’ve been traveling a lot lately, and have been having a love/hate relationship with my phone on every single international trip. I love that I can take photos without lugging a camera, and I love that I can check email in my hotel. But I hate that I have to worry about ridiculous charges, so I end up turning off my cellular data unless I’m in a place that has wifi. Then I have to turn it on and remember to turn it back off again before the charges start creeping in.

It becomes a source of stress, which is the last thing anyone wants on vacation.

I was complaining about this to someone on my last trip and she told me to look into Recharge.com. If you get a prepaid phone with a local carrier — which is usually pretty inexpensive — you can then buy phone credit on their site and top it up instantly whenever you need it. This seems like a great option, and one I will definitely be looking into.

While we were talking, we somehow segued into a conversation about our own favorite places to recharge! I loved hearing her suggestions, which I’m going to share here. The only one I’ve been to is Dubai but, after hearing her descriptions, I’m sold. more »

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