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1
Etihad Arrivals Lounge Abu Dhabi-AUH Airport and Chauffeur Service to Dubai
 
2
Park Hyatt Dubai Hotel Review
 
3
Touring Göreme – Cave hotels, cave restaurants, caves everywhere!
 
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January 19, 2017

Park Hyatt Dubai Hotel Review

BOOKING

The Park Hyatt Dubai is a Hyatt Category 5 property, meaning award nights will cost you 20,000 points or 10,000 + $125. Booking with points didn’t make much sense, though, as we were able to book a special 3-night minimum Ramadan rate of about ~$150 US/night + tax. Best of all, when booking with cash or Points + Cash, you can apply a Diamond Suite Upgrade which will land you in a suite and get you access to the minibar for free. More on that later.

CHECK-IN

We arrived at the Park Hyatt Dubai around 9:30 pm on a Thursday night during Ramadan after a very long travel day from the US (see Etihad B787 “Business Studio” EY 130 Washington-IAD to Abu [...]

297
 
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January 16, 2017

Touring Göreme – Cave hotels, cave restaurants, caves everywhere!

After leaving Istanbul, we headed to Göreme, in the Cappadocia region of central Turkey. The Cappadocia area is known for its unique geography and rich history. Our main reason for visiting the area was to see the famous caves and “fairy chimneys” and take a world-famous hot air balloon ride.

Trying to cram a lot into a small amount of time, our first 24 hours in Göreme involved lots of activities with little sleep: we got to the hotel (which was partly built into the volcanic rock) around 8pm, dropped our stuff, and headed to dinner at this cool restaurant we found within walking distance, Topdeck Cave Restaurant.

Kismet Cave Hotel [...]

144
 
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January 8, 2017

Etihad Arrivals Lounge Abu Dhabi-AUH Airport and Chauffeur Service to Dubai

After landing in Abu Dhabi-AUH from our flight from Washington, D.C., we popped into the Etihad Arrivals Lounge after going through passport control/customs. We had our chauffeur already scheduled, so we really only had the time to head to the lounge for some water. We couldn’t stop ourselves from trying a quick snack, too — pita and hummus and a few bite-sized sandwiches.

At around, the lounge was mostly empty. Interestingly, it looked very similar to the Etihad lounge at IAD, with the same decor: dark wood with bright white and light blue leather upholstery.

In the lounge, there’s also a shower area and Jeffrey almost [...]

333
 
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October 9, 2016

Charleston Aftermath: Hurricane Matthew Photos and HD Aerial Videos

 

First off, here’s the video we shot with my drone that I impulsively bought at the Apple Store in Greenville earlier today. It shows the Harleston Village around Beaufain, Smith, Rutledge, Coming etc…

All of the pictures were shot around 5-6pm on Saturday 10/8.

Lots of roads closed to The Peninsula

Blurry but the point remains: Family Dollar used ALL of the sand bags

A boarded up 39 Rue de Jean

Awnings, a common victim of Matthew

We found most streets to be a bit of an (expected) [...]

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September 23, 2016

Etihad B787 “Business Studio” EY 130 Washington-IAD to Abu Dhabi-AUH

As part of our quest to fly on Etihad’s A380 in their “First Apartment” from Abu Dhabi-AUH to Melbourne-MEL, we had to find a way to position to AUH for the flight over. We decided it would be fun to spend some time in the UAE (we quickly regretted this decision as soon as we stepped into the desert in 117°F heat) and found award availability from Washington-IAD direct to Abu Dhabi-AUH. Best of all, it was operated by one of their new 787s and featured their “Business Studio” class of service.

Here’s a map of our route for the 13 hr 10 min flight that covers a distance of 7,088 miles (11,407 km):

CHECK-IN

We landed on [...]

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September 7, 2016

Etihad First and Business Class Lounge Washington, DC-IAD

After getting to Dulles way too early for our flight out to Dubai, we were extra-eager to finally arrive at the Etihad First and Business Class Lounge. This was one of our (many) highlights of our upcoming trip, and it didn’t disappoint. The Etihad lounge is located at A16, right next to their gate. Because they have just one gate at Dulles, Business & First passengers can board directly from the lounge which is super, super awesome (and a first for us!).

Headed to Gate A16

Entrance to the Etihad Business/First Lounge

As soon as the sliding doors closed behind us, it didn’t feel like we were at the [...]

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September 1, 2016

Top 14: Longest United Airlines Flights In the World

(Updated 9/1/16):

Added SFO-SIN Added TLV-SFO Removed IAD-DXB

I recently researched and completed a list outlining the longest Delta flights in the world and was surprised to see that Delta is considered to be one of the biggest airlines in the world based upon a number of metrics. However, I also became curious about the other U.S. based carriers.

Other posts in this series:

Top 7: Longest domestic US flights Top 10: Longest Domestic Flights in the World Top 12: Longest Non-Stop Delta Flights in the World Top 15: Longest Fifth Freedom Flights in the World Top 10: World’s longest non-stop flights Top 16 Longest Emirates Fifth Freedom Routes: Coming to a City Near [...]
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August 22, 2016

American AAdvantage Redemption: Business Class on Etihad to Abu Dhabi-AUH

The first award redemption of our Around the World trip to Dubai/Australia was booked using American Airlines miles.

We used 60,750 American Airlines AAdvantage miles each (a total of 67,5o0 – 10% rebate since we both have the AAdvantage Aviator Red MasterCard) and booked the following routes in Business Class. We booked before the March 2016 American AAdvantage devaluation, but this award only increased 2,500 points to 70,000 total (link to new award map here).

While we would never have paid the cash rates, it’s always nice knowing that your miles are getting a lot of value as the airfare for this route hovers at around $9,700 per [...]

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