Posts tagged with "vacation"

“Tips to Keep In Mind When Planning Your Next Vacation”

We sometimes cover destination-specific travel guides, but every now and then it helps to think of things more generally also. To that point, we’re devoting this post to the actual planning process that goes into travel.

Location is ultimately the most important thing when you plan a trip, and we’ll speak some to that as well. But even once you choose a destination, there are a few things you’ll need to look into and plan for in advance in order to ensure the smoothest and most enjoyable possible getaway.

To that point, here are just a few things to keep in mind the next time you’re planning a trip.

Reserve Events Ahead of Time

When booking a trip, one pitfall too many people fall into is thinking that big attractions and events will be freely available. More often than not, the opposite is true. For instance, when taking a trip to Italy, you’d probably want to head up into the Leaning Tower of Pisa, right? Well, if so, you’d better reserve your tour early, because reservations to go inside can get backed up for months at a time! It’s just one example, but it shows that taking specific events or attractions for granted can lead to a partially wasted vacation.

Have Plans For Everyone Going

If you’re traveling with a group, it’s important to make sure that the location you choose has something for everyone. Consider the ever-alluring Atlantic City as an example. Visiting A.C. to enjoy its bountiful casino scene, recently reinvigorated by the success of online casinos, sounds great for a party of adults. For a whole family though, no number of slots or poker tables would keep everyone happy were it not for the other attractions at Atlantic City/s resorts. Someone in your group is going to want to do something else. Basically, this is to say that even if a destination is known for one particular thing, it pays to make sure there’s something for everyone to enjoy.

Be Open to New Experiences

It’s always a good idea to plan on new experiences. Each and every destination has its own delicacies, traditions, and more that should enrich the travel experience. For instance, if you visit Costa Rica, try zip lining above a rainforest; if you go to Spain, try some local tapas. You should go into every trip prepared to have these kinds of experiences, even if this sort of planning is more about mindset than logistics.

These are just a few simple tips, but if you follow them, we’re betting you’ll truly get the most out of your upcoming trips. Some extra planning up front, or even a small shift in your mindset. will pay off later on. Keeping just these little things in mind can result ini some of the best trips of your life.

Last-minute Cinco De Mayo Snacks

Check out some of the best salsa brands in the biz: CHI-CHI’s®, HERDEZ® and LA VICTORIA® and while each is unique in its own way, they’re all perfect for an at-home fiesta. Let’s not forget that May is also National Salsa Month so there’s no better time to “salsabrate!”

As the No. 1 salsa brand in Mexico, HERDEZ has been a staple in Mexican kitchens for over 100 years. Whether as a classic dip for chips or a zesty meat marinade, it delivers authenticity to Cinco celebrations nationwide. If HERDEZ is the responsible older brother, then CHI-CHI’s is the fun, younger brother. With CHI-CHI’s, you don’t need an event to get your salsa on because it brings the fiesta straight to you with its newest lineup of Fiesta Style Salsas. Meanwhile, LA VICTORIA is just as authentic but with a West Coast addition of farm-fresh tomatoes from the Central Valley – think of it as the brother that went away for college and came back a little more “woke.”

Consider making one of these easy-to-prepare recipes for your weekend festivities:

Ensalada Fresca Con Salsa de Guacamole—Simply pile on the fresh veggies, sprinkle a little cheese, add the dressing, and you’ve got a refreshingly easy chopped Mexican salad that’s perfect for a Cinco appetizer.

Salsa Verde Shrimp Skewers with Street Corn—These shrimp skewers marinated in HERDEZ® Salsa Verde are the perfect light and easy dish for its flavor and crunch. For the ultimate pairing, don’t forget to pair it with street corn mixed with feta cheese.

DIY Shredded Chicken Taco Bar—There is nothing better than giving party guests the creativity to build their own tacos! This DIY shredded chicken taco bar is a perfect way to be the hostess with the mostess while still having time to enjoy the Cinco celebration.

Chili Lime Shrimp Tacos—Treat your party-goers to these colorful shrimp tacos. Perfect for double-fisting with a beer, marg or michelada, these tacos bring the heat along with a cooling sauce to balance it out.

10 Ways to Monitor Your Drinking this Cinco de Mayo

1. Don’t drink on an empty stomach. Savor your meal before you start drinking an alcoholic beverage.

2. Do not overeat and Sip your drink. Enjoy your beverage.

3. Avoid binging. The definition of binging is 5 drinks or more in less than 4-5 hours.

4. Keep your consumption of drinks as low as possible – not more than 3 drinks for a man and 2 for a woman.

5. Alcoholic beverages are similar in alcohol content. One beer is equivalent to a glass of wine or a shot of liquor.

6. Find a driver. Don’t drive after drinking. It is hard to judge your blood alcohol level and its effects on your cognitive ability and reflexes.

7. If you are a diabetic or hypertensive, suffering from a heart or liver condition, take your daily medications, and check with your doctor to avoid alcohol interactions with your medications.

8. If you are going to use Tylenol, don’t exceed more than 3 grams in one day. Be aware that a lot of headache medicines or pain killers contain acetaminophen (Tylenol), so avoid accidental overdosing.

9. Don’t mix alcohol with other recreational drugs.

10. Space your beverages to allow your body the ability to metabolize what you ingested and avoid intoxication.

Savor, Sip and Space

Curated by Dr. Tarek Hassanein of Southern California Liver Centers

Get the Most Out of Your Tax Refund

IfOnly Makes Rewarding Yourself Easy

Spring has just begun and with Tax Day right around the corner, it’s time to reward yourself for a year’s worth of hard work and spend that tax refund money on something memorable. Whether your tax refund is big or small, IfOnly offers a variety of worthwhile experiences at a range of different price points in different locations to fully enjoy your refund.  

Have you ever been backstage at a broadway show? Take IfOnly’s Backstage Tour at ‘Avenue Q’ with One of the Stars, for $100 / person.

Looking to up your fitness game? Experience the PADI Seal Team Training Weekend, for $240 / person, or the Aerial Bungee and Wall Running Taught by a Professional Aerialist/Stunt Performer, for $180 / person.

Or embrace your inner ballroom dancer with a Private Couples Tango Lesson, for $150 / person.

About IfOnly

IfOnly is a marketplace for incredible experiences. From unique everyday offerings with local experts to once-in-a-lifetime connections with lauded luminaries, IfOnly provides access to a curated selection of extraordinary experiences that benefit worthy causes around the world. IfOnly works with over 350 causes, over 3,000 luminaries, and has millions of members.

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ISRAEL FOR MOTHER’S DAY

We’ve got a destination for you to consider: Israel.

As the years pass by, you start to recognize the value of traveling together and there is no better way to bond than a mother-child trip. Historical sites, delectable cuisine, and stunning scenery make Israel the perfect destination to celebrate this Mother’s Day.

What to Do: Israel’s rich history provides travelers with limitless sites to see, and attractions to experience. Whether you’re a shopaholic looking to splurge this Mother’s Day, or a beach bum in desperate need of a vacation, Israel has it all.

  • Neve Tzedek – Treat your Mom to a shopping spree this Mother’s Day in one of Tel Aviv’s oldest districts, Neve Tzedek. The small, narrow streets of the district have become increasingly fashionable due to restoration works that have commenced in recent years. Rather than simply buying your mother a gift this holiday, indulge in a shopping experience together and explore the unique boutiques, design shops and other captivating shops Neve Tzedek has to offer.
  • Gordon Beach – For the mothers who need a break from work and family responsibilities, relax on one of Tel Aviv’s most popular beaches, Gordon Beach. The white, sandy beach that stretches alongside the most modern promenade in the country has an outdoor gym, volleyball courts, surfing, windsurfing, kayaking and a plethora of beach side bars and restaurants to choose from where mothers and daughters can unwind and let loose.
  • Hidden Tunnels – The mysteries and underground worlds of Israel are waiting to be discovered by Mother’s who are consumed by wanderlust. Visit the top four hidden underground tunnels – Western Wall Tunnels, Hezekiah’s Tunnels (also known as Siloam Tunnels), Herodium National Park and Rosh HaNikra Grottoes – to peek into life during ancient times. This will be an unforgettable Mother’s Day for those who are truly looking to go off the beaten path.

 

Where to Stay: Israel is home to many highly-ranked hotels, offering guests relaxing and luxurious stays that cater to any type of vacationer.

 

  • Budget: Dan Panorama – The Dan Panorama Hotel offers easy access to everywhere you want to be. Across the street is the Mediterranean Sea and within minutes you find yourself on an inviting sandy beach with warm and clear waters. With a huge pool and sundeck, premium leisure-time facilities and dining options, as well as all the dynamic and sophisticated attractions of Tel Aviv on its doorstep, the Dan Panorama Tel Aviv is perfect for a mother-daughter weekend trip on a budget.

 

  • Spa: Carmel Forest Spa Resort – The Carmel Forest Spa Resort is the ideal getaway for mothers who need to escape stress and relieve tension. SpaFinder named the secluded 126-room resort the Best Spa in the Middle East several years in a row. The spa offers more than 70 body and beauty treatments such as massages, balance and release therapies, seaweed wraps, stone therapy, Reiki, Shiatsu, Healing, and Ayurveda. No guests under 16 years of age or mobile phones are permitted – making an exceptionally quiet and peaceful atmosphere for mothers to tap out of reality for a while.

 

  • Luxury: Mamilla Hotel – Moms can take a break from cooking this Mother’s Day because Mamilla Hotel Dining has something for everyone. Rooftop Outdoor Lounge & Restaurant sits high above the city with a panoramic view of Jerusalem’s Old City. Happy Fish is a Mediterranean inspired fish restaurant overlooking Mamilla Avenue. You can eat in the harmonious ambiance of the ballroom for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and then head over to the mirror bar to bask in Jerusalem’s sophisticated nightlife scene. Coffee lovers can indulge in gourmet coffee at the espresso bar, while wine experts can raise their glasses at the winery.

Austin Adventures Launches Independent Traveler Option

Travel trends drive travel experiences. Identifying a growing desire for maximum individualization and flexibility in vacations, veteran tour operator Austin Adventures has launched a new vacation option: a complete travel concierge service for those who want it “their way” — down to literally sitting in the driver’s seat if they’d like. 
 
Austin Concierge is a brand new offering from the leader in global multi-sport adventures. Its target audience is the seasoned independent traveler who would like to vacation at his or her own pace, with his or her own friends and family.
 
“It’s your vacation, your way,” founder and president Dan Austin said. “You tell us what, when and where, and we put our 35+ years’ experience and extensive network of contacts to work for you to craft a tailor-made itinerary that you can simply go and enjoy.”
 
Austin Adventures is known for its small group tours and its ability to execute fully-guided custom trips as simple or imaginative as desired. Austin Concierge is one more way the company is seeking to make the most of their guests’ vacation time.
 
“We are proud of what we do — and nearly 99% of our alumni say they’d travel with us again — but we know that sometimes the packaged, all-inclusive, pre-set group tour isn’t quite what you’re looking for and a custom-built, fully-guided itinerary is not in the budget,” Austin said. “This is another option for the independent traveler in us all.”
 
Austin goes on to explain, “Savvy travelers want the perfect route with the best stops, the “just-right” accommodations and most unique dining, and the right mix of activity and relaxation — but with more flexibility and more time to do just the things they want to do. And if they’re totally honest, some would like to take the keys and drive, too!”
 
Here is how the new Austin Concierge travel service works: 

  • By phone, email, or web form, you contact Austin Adventures and request a personalized itinerary just for you;
  • Dan or Carol Austin will schedule a complimentary 30-minute call with you to determine if Austin Concierge is the best fit for you;
  • If it’s deemed the perfect fit, you will work with one of the company’s most veteran trip developers to create a perfect itinerary;
  • A $500 trip development deposit (applied to the final cost) is made;
  • You communicate what, when, and where you want to go and what special things you’d like to do on vacation. Experts then put their 35+ years of trip building experience and network of connections to work for you;
  • They plan the route, book the lodging, recommend the restaurants, arrange the activities, and hire any private guides needed;
  • You have the ability to adjust the itinerary two times (without additional cost) during the planning process;
  • Once the tailor-made itinerary is perfected, and depending on how soon it is to departure, a final deposit or full payment is made;
  • Your itinerary is then handed off to you with all the detailed logistics and support materials. You depart on the set date and enjoy your finely-crafted itinerary. Austin Adventures is a phone call away for any needed support during your trip. 

Is this new Austin Concierge service the right solution? Or would joining a pre-set, small group packaged tour, taking over a scheduled trip date as an exclusive outing or planning an all-inclusive fully-guided custom trip be the right way to go? This simple chart may help:
  
Vacations exploring the National Parks of the West are a signature specialty of Austin Adventures, but this new concierge service is not limited to just the US. The company prides itself on offering programs on all seven continents. See the newly enhanced and improved website and Austin Adventures Home Page for a list of all the destinations served.
 
Travel Agents are also welcomed and encouraged to book their clients on Austin Concierge self-guided tours with Austin Adventures. Net prices will be quoted with room for agent adjustments.
 
For more information, questions and help planning an Austin Concierge itinerary, please call 1.800.575.1540 or email info@austinadventures.com. For a full roster of Austin Adventures’ 2019 trips, cruises and distinctive accommodations on seven continents please visit www.austinadventures.com.
 
To access the 2019 digital catalog or order a print copy, go to: www.austinadventures.com/request-catalog/.
 
Austin Adventures is a two-time Travel + Leisure Magazine World’s Best Award Winner and a Virtuoso Preferred Tour Operator.
 

Royalton Suites Cancún

By Tenzin Tsephel × Vaughn Lowery

Spring Break is creeping around the corner and you know what that means–time to start booking a relaxing place to stay while you enjoy your vacation extravaganza! At Royalton Suites Cancún, this 4.5 out of 5 star resorts aim is to meet and go above and beyond your expectations. With their excellent customer service, you will be taken care of with the highest quality of care. The resort is a little over a month old as of today and is within walking distance from beautiful downtown Cancún. Officers are available onsite both by the beach side as well as inside the lobby. The resort offers breathtakingly stunning views, stylish architecture, and exceptional service. Inside your booked room, you can find luxurious detailing as every piece was designed to make your experience magical. Enjoy a refreshing shower with their waterfall shower head capabilities where the showering area can fit about 2-5 people–pretty spacious! Inside each suite is a beautiful architecturally-built room designed to give you the feel of extreme luxury.

For all you food lovers out there, Royalton Suites Cancún offers seven restaurants and six bars to fuel your taste buds! You can enjoy local and international delights in buffet styles or à la carte dining venues and end it off with a cocktail, or two, or maybe even grab a cup of coffee at their café. The available dining areas are: Gourmet Marché, Hunter Steakhouse, Agave, Jade, C/X Culinary Experience, SCORE Sports Bar and Lounge, Grazie Italian Trattoria, Beach Club Grill, and Coffee Lounge.

As for their international drinks, you can enjoy a glass at Martini Mix, Sands Beach Bar, Level 18, Dips Pool Bar, or at their Lobby bar. Want to experience a FULL-out luxury vacation treatment? The resort offers a Diamond Club Member package that includes the following goodies/experience:

• Preferred room locations

• Butler service

• Exclusive bar, pool and beach areas with waiter service

• Exclusive Diamond Club Lounge access

• Daily, continental breakfast service in lounge

• Upgraded room service menu

• Luxury amenities in room

• 10% discount on spa treatments and hair dresser

• Day Spa facials, massages, therapeutic pools–why not go ahead and relax that body and mind of yours?

The wow-factor does not end there. The resort offers Level 18, a rooftop area for the most magical experience yet.

It is a rooftop cabana lounge with a panoramic view of the most sought-after sight lines. This area is for adults only and also has a pool, available modern dining, and a nightclub experience. For all you party-goers, at Level 18 you can find a dance party every Thursday evening with a live DJ and amazing LED lights that flash the night away. All you do is wear your brightest whites and let it all out! For those who are more family-oriented or on family vacations, Royalton Suites has a Clubhouse Kids Club, a Hangout Teens Lounge, and offers overall sports and recreational activities that include dancing your heart away to Zumba, yoga, a gym facility, and more. So why not bring all the family right on over and enjoy this royal treatment all together?

If you are looking for more special package deals, there are some designed for birthdays, friends’ getaways, anniversaries, and even for spicing up your romance with your significant other. The birthday package deal is set at $249 package rate per room. This includes a special door/room décor at your arrival, breakfast in bed, a complimentary dinner and cake, and to top it all off a reserved beach spot with a couple’s massage. For birthdays directed at kids, there is a $99 package rate per room. This includes a special room/door décor at your arrival, a complimentary birthday cake, breakfast-served, a special meet and greet with the resort’s Kids Character and ending it all off with a family photo for the memories. More into a getaway with your friends? There is a package that offers a $299 rate per quad room, a complimentary section of wine, and unlimited hydrotherapy pool access. For anniversaries, there is a $299 rate for two, a couple’s spa treatment, breakfast in bed experience, one romantic dinner for two, and a bottle of premium wine at your convenience.

Special occasion celebrations are also available at the resort for weddings or even group events. Of course, a little help along the way in the means of transportation to get to the resort doesn’t hurt! That is what Nexus Tours is here for. Tour Nexus is your leading destination management company that arranges your tours and transportation for you so you can have a safe and efficient way of traveling to your destination. Oh, the fun part? Tour Nexus can even arranged parasailing and jet skiing for your outdoor/active lovers! Paradise snorkeling is also in the books near the beautiful islands…So, what are you waiting for? Time is ticking and Spring Break is nearly here! Book your stay now with Tour Nexus to Royalton Suites Cancún and start living life NOW.

MIAMI MUSIC WEEK 2019

CASABLANCA RECORDS CELEBRATES MIAMI MUSIC WEEK 2019 WITH THE ESSENTIAL ELECTRONIC POOL PARTY AT DREAM SOUTH BEACH

IN PARTNERSHIP WITH LYFT, SPLICE, BILLBOARD DANCE, AND HITS 97.3

GUESTS INCLUDED DON DIABLO, SG LEWIS, NETSKY, PHANTOMS, M-22, DZEKO, BLACK CAVIAR, AUTOGRAF, FELIX JAEHN, AND MORE

Casablanca Records hosted The Essential Electronic Pool Party celebrating Miami Music Week 2019 at the Dream South Beach.

In addition to DJ sets from SG Lewis, Netsky, Phantoms, M-22, Dzeko, Black Caviar, Autograf, the event featured attendees such as Don Diablo, Felix Jaehn, NOTD, Felix Cartel, and more.

The event was hosted in partnership with Lyft, Splice, Billboard Dance, and HITS 97.3.

Estero Inn

Estero Inn on the Waterfront of Morro Bay
Estero Inn is an intimate boutique hotel on the waterfront of Morro Bay.
Whether you are looking for a romantic getaway or a revitalizing stop on your coastal journey the Estero Inn is awaiting you with cozy fireplaces, private balconies and wet bar. Relax on their seaside landing, enjoying panoramic ocean views, amazing sunsets and inspiring wildlife including sea otters, sea lions and seals with Morro Rock as the backdrop.
The Inn is gently removed from highway 1 on the Bay & Embarcadero, just steps away from exceptional shopping, dining and your complimentary wine tasting.

Tuscan Women Cook

A Culinary Immersion Vacation Experience

Have you ever wanted to learn to cook in Italy, to participate in Tuscan cooking classes? And return home with recipes handed down over generations and collected by us since 2000? Each spring and fall, Coleen Kirnan and Rhonda Vilardo welcome guests from around the world to live, breath and cook as Italians do. Taking advantage of their years of business experience and knowledge, as master event planners, they create an insider’s Tuscan itinerary filled friendly, knowledgeable tour guides, translators, drivers and private cooking classes that only a local resident could access.

Indulge yourself in the Tuscan lifestyle and discover the region’s passion for food and wine in a small group of 18 people or less. The best cooks in all of Tuscany, the local women, or “nonnas,” teach their classes. They’ll share regional techniques, ingredients, and family recipes that have been passed down over the centuries. Put on your apron, gather around the old farmhouse table, get wrist-deep in pasta dough and learn Tuscan cooking from the source. You’ll learn first-hand how to make gnocchi, tagliatelli, and pici— thick strings of handmade eggless pasta made originally in Montefollonico.

Your week with Tuscan Women Cook includes six night’s accommodation at Agriturismo Belagaggio, a restored farmhouse in Montefollonico, breakfast, lunch, and dinner every day, cooking classes, daily sightseeing, visits to local artisans, cheese and wine tastings. Full day sight- seeing in Siena with a private guide who has a doctorate in Sienese history. Full translation is provided at all classes. Transportation to all activities is in a Mercedes minibus with private driver.

For wine lovers, Tuscan Women Cook is situated in the heart of Brunello de Montalcino and Vino Nobile di Montepulciano country, and border on the Chianti wine region. This is the center of the new Italian wine renaissance and a dream locale for your next getaway with family and friends. Wine connoisseurs plan the ultimate Bucket List trip here to sample new wines and visit the spectacular vineyards. Tuscan Women Cook hosts will provide you with exclusive introductions to renowned Tuscan vintners and opportunities to purchase their award-winning wines for their personal cellars.

To learn more about Tuscan Women Cook and view beautiful photos and videos, visit www.TuscanWomenCook.com.

Tuscan women cook, 360 MAGAZINE, Italy, wine, Vaughn Lowery

Tuscan women cook, 360 MAGAZINE, Italy, wine, Vaughn Lowery

Tuscan women cook, 360 MAGAZINE, Italy, wine, Vaughn Lowery