On our trip from Myanmar to Vietnam, we lucked into a 48-hour layover in Bangkok, one of our very, very favorite cities in the entire world. We first visited Bangkok in 2011 and it was our first foray into Asian culture. We loved it more than we ever thought we would and dove into Thai food and Thai culture head first – and haven’t looked back since.
After visiting a few other Asian cities and countries by now, Bangkok is still at the top of our list and we think it’s a great city to get your feet wet- there’s plenty of tourists and [...]
When we arrived in Mendoza (after bussing over the Andes – see our review of our bus trip here), we took a cab to the Park Hyatt Mendoza. The front facade of the building is perfectly gorgeous and majestic, just like many of the other Park Hyatts we’ve visited (have I mentioned it’s my favorite hotel brand?!).
The 5-star hotel is a bit smaller than several other Park Hyatts, but it’s perfect for a small city like Mendoza. I really love how Park Hyatts stay true to the culture and history of the city and especially loved the restored 19th-century Spanish colonial façade.
The hotel lobby is grand and full of marble, with large, [...]
While we were in Istanbul, we were bound and determined to get the full experience of visiting an authentic Turkish bath. We began researching the different options after we’d arrived in Istanbul and quickly found out that the true Turkish baths have separate male and female sections (that makes sense… not trying to be ogled by strange men). But, after scouting out TripAdvisor and a few other websites, we gathered that many of the “true” Turkish bath visits involve excessively awkward experiences, compliments of lots of old-person nudity.
Throw in a language barrier, and we (hesitantly) opted for the more conservative route with a much more touristy [...]
Our impression of the Keraton started long before we stepped foot in the hotel. Admittedly a bit wary about spending the next few days in Jakarta (thanks to our friendly hotel owner in Bali!), I was a bit on edge as we arrived at the airport — where we were the only tourists around. My thoughts of dread quickly turned around, though, when we were met with a hotel representative at baggage claim with our name and the Keraton logo on an iPad. He grabbed our luggage and escorted us out of the airport.
We came upon a huge fleet of Mercedes Kompressors and we jumped in one with chilled towels (with the Keraton logo) and a small [...]
As of March 22, 2016, the AAdvantage award redemption rates will change for a vast number of regions and cabins. In general, the cost to redeem miles for seats on American Airlines and their Oneworld partner members will increase. The most significant increases will be imposed on First Class cabin redemptions. We are providing a map that shows the number of miles it will take to travel between the Contiguous 48 U.S. states and other zones in the world:
Here’s the new chart in table format. All prices are roundtrip and based upon travel originating in the Contiguous 48 U.S. states:ZoneEconomy Off-PeakEconomyBusinessFirst African/a80k150k240k Asia [...]
We walked across the Golden Horn Bridge one morning after trying to take the tram to the “newer” area of Istanbul, along the European side of the Bosphorus River. No one knew why the tram never arrived, but, later that day, we found out that someone had suicide-bombed a police station, so they had closed all the tram lines as a pre-caution. Yikes.
After walking around the newer area, we headed to Dolmabahçe Palace, Turkey’s largest palace, which is located right on the Bosphorus River and was used as the center of the Ottoman Empire between 1856 – 1922.
It was ordered to be built by the sultan, Abdulmecid I, as his current residence, the [...]
….but they also got less valuable at 168 properties. Starwood just released a list of properties that will be changing categories for award redemption purposes. The changes go into effect on March 1, 2016, meaning that you have about 10 days to either book at the current rate or 10 days to wait until booking at the new rate.
Here’s a map of all of the properties that are changing in value:
For those based in North America, the most interesting ones might be the properties in the US, Mexico and Canada that are decreasing in value:COUNTRYSTATECITYPROPERTY2015 CATEGORY2016 CATEGORYChange MexicoCoahuilaSaltilloFour Points by Sheraton [...]
Air Asia QZ 7529 Dept: Bali (DPS) 3:35 pm Arrv: Jakarta (CGK) 4:15 pm
We knew we needed to fly fro Bali to Jakarta for weeks (if not months), but for whatever reason never booked a flight. We were partly putting it off having heard not-so-great things about Jakarta and I guess we were a little nervous to go. In fact, up until the day before our flight, we were still deciding whether we should extend our stay in Bali/Ubud or fly to Singapore early or bite the bullet and go to Jakarta. We finally ended up booking our Air Asia flight the day before departure for $156.67 USD total (for the two of us).