London, things to see and do…if you stop here enroute to your villa vacation in Italy

Conde Nast reporst about  some…..Things to Do in London Besides the Olympics


If you are heading to Italy for a villa vacation, some of you may stop in London enroute – this article in Conde Nast Traveler may be just the thing for you…read on

London’s Emirates Air Line cable car

The Olympics are taking over London this summer, but that’s not all there is to do in town. Read on for our picks of the city’s top summer festivals, exhibits, and events that have nothing to do with the games…. Continue reading

Rome – Rome is the Real Star of Woody Allen’s To Rome with Love


Rome is the Real Star of Woody Allen’s To Rome with Love so says Conde Nast Traveller – with a great slide show too

Woody Allen’s newest film, To Rome with Love, opens today, and not only does it have a stellar cast (Penelope Cruz, Alec Baldwin, Jesse Eisenberg), it has a stellar setting: the gorgeous streets of Rome. On their site – you can take a look at the place we think is the real star of the show.

Rent an apartment in Rome and stay a while

Rent an apartment in Rome

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Where to eat in Paris – 5 great Bistros from Conde Nast

Paris -the question is always “where to eat in Paris” there are so many choices, that it becomes a problem to choose, even where to start.  Of course for me the local bistro is always the best … the fancy restaurants, really everyone knows which they are, and how to find them, but the bistros are key. so if you rent an apartment in Paris and want to find a little place to eat, this recent article in Conde Nast Traveller may provide a place to start:

that being said – one of my personal favorites is Bistrot d’Henri – located near our Princesse apartment

Paris Bistro near our Princesse apartment

Bistro in Paris – one of my favorites

From Conde Nast - here are their recommendations

Those wonderful red-checked-tablecloth bistros are why you fell in love in Paris, right? Sadly, they’re not only increasingly rare but increasingly expensive. Here, however, are five that won’t break the bank. Continue reading

Google 3-D imaging take a look and Rome…Venice Florence and more

Fascinating…Google has this amazing 3D imaging of certain major towns – take an armchair trip or plan your next holiday – take a look at Rome

Florence – take a look at the Duomo Square

Then – look at what’s up today -Google is unveiling the “Next Dimension of Google Maps” -  Google is hosting an event to show off the “Next Dimension of Google Maps”. Continue reading

Riviera – home to great food – A French Riviera Gastrocrawl

The french Riviera – not only a place of luxury homes, beautiful views and charming villages,  the New York Times recently had a great article on some wonderful food related things to see and do here… we have some great properties in Provence, within a few hours drive of here – we also work with some lovely boutique hotels – in Nice and surrounding areas – so  take a closer look at the whole article – A French Riviera Gastrocrawl; a few delicious excerpts below: and see if you would like to book the next jet out to the Riviera. from the article in the New York Times Continue reading

Cinque Terre – some ideas, things to see and do in Cinque terre

The Telegraph, a great UK based newspaper often has some very good, interesting Travel articles – some ideas for Cinque Terre and the area surrounding La Spezia – should you happen to arrive by cruise ship are provided here – Cinque Terre and Surrounding areas (#cinqueterre)

Vernazza - Cinque terre

Cinque Terre – sun umbrellas in Vernazza

What to do

The classic CinqueTerre activity – and the reason so many visitors come here, even out of season – is the walk along the coast path that connects the five villages (if you’re feeling ambitious, you can extend it as far as La Spezia to the east or Levanto to the west). Continue reading

Mark Zuckerberg Fails to Tip, Should You? The Truth About Tipping Etiquette in Rome from Conde Nast

This article is worth a read – gives some great thoughts on tipping in Rome – below some key points directly from the article; Please also refer to our comments about tipping for a villa stay…next blog.

For the past 24 hours, European writers—apparently starved for stories about Italian restaurant etiquette—have been obsessing over allegations that Mark Zuckerberg failed to leave tips at two restaurants during his honeymoon in Rome with Priscilla Chan. Continue reading

New Train in Italy makes for fast travel

Trains in Italy – updates – new high speed trains connect main Italian towns


The regional and most of the Italian train service is managed by Trenitalia, a State company. Please note that regional and Intercity trains require that you stamp the ticket  before boarding, otherwise you’ll be fined. Regional trains are very cheap and connect many Tuscan cites, while faster and more expensive Eurostar AV and Frecciarossa trains connect Florence to other Italian cities. Intercity trains are cheaper than Eurostar, but have there are few still running. Continue reading

Great weekender bag for travel – carry on with great looks…capacity

Just found this great bag! the Worton Weekender…I would highly recommend it to anyone not just as a carry on – but if you can travel light, I mean if you can travel with a carry on only, then this is a great find.  Not only does it look great…black with leather straps and handles, it is amazingly useful.  I tested it myself on a 2 week safari to Tanzania – imagine a woman traveling for two weeks with only a carry on! ( I know, I know – sounds sexist, but I am a woman and I tell you it’s a feat to pack everything in one bag for 2 weeks…feat really should be feet – as shoes are worst for women to take along…  Everything fit, when rolled and tucked in… and the best is that the bag still looked good after being squished into the back of a jeep and crossing the very dusty Serengeti, sitting on the terrace of the beach house in Zanzibar or in the business class lounge… I can’t wait to take it to Italy soon – when I go on the next villa inspection trip to Tuscany

Best of all… I just received a notice that for the next 24 hours ( check date of posting) they are offering a great promotion … Continue reading

Italy’s Romance Hotspots…a few alternatives

Found a great article today about some lovely locations in Italy – are you looking for some romance during your trip to Italy, what about Juliet’s balcony in Verona? or a gondola ride in Venice, or standing at the edge of the Trevi fountain on a moonlit evening in Rome…that’s Amore!  read more in this Lonely Planet article republished by Frommer’s – Alternatives to Italy’s romance hotspots

Consider renting an apartment in Rome or Venice, perhaps a charming B&B in Verona?