Elisa's Daily Scoop NEXT TRIP DEPARTS IN: 46 DAYS
Memories of Hotel Ai Reali in Venice
Wow - what a great day I had yesterday! As I had mentioned, for Shoppin' Saturday yesterday, I went on a shopping spree for some clothing for my upcoming trip in 45 days to London.
I want to share with you all the goodies I bought, which I have done below, but let me just say that I found just about everything that was on my list!!
I ran over to Tanger while the girls were riding and I managed to go to two stores - New York & Company and Steve Madden.
And believe it or not, I had some great success!
I found 2 blouses - which I plan to wear going to and from Paris; along with a pair of leggings for one of my days in London.
Additionally, I was lucky enough to find a cute beige rain coat, which was on my list!
There was also an adorable gray sweater that snatched up for under $10 and an adorable hat as well.
Lastly, I trekked on over to Steve Madden and found a perfect pair of casual boots - just right for walking all around two European cities!!
Members of the Ai Reali Hotel Staff (c) travelincousins.com
AND SPEAKING OF EUROPEAN CITIES...namely, Venice, where Tanya currently is on her Winter Wonderland Tour, I'm reminiscing about my stay at the Hotel Ai Reali in Venice in two and one-half years ago.
I'm standing with two members of the absolutely lovely staff of the hotel (which, at the time, I didn't realize just how tiny I was, in comparison lol).
MY LUXURY SUITE AT THE AI REALI HOTEL (c) travelincousins.com
My "home" in Venice for four nights was at the lovely hotel, located in the Rialto area, only a few blocks walk to the Rialto Bridge.
I couldn't have asked for a nicer staff, including Gianni at the front desk, who helped us with restaurant suggestions and securing tickets to the Doge's Palace. I highly recommend a stay here, if ever in Venice, and I'm not alone, as it is recognized by Trip Advisor with a 5-star rating, as well as by Small Luxury Hotels of the World.
Today I headed into Queens to have brunch with my Aunt Ro.
Although I speak with her everyday via text, I haven't seen her in person in more than two months, so, it was great to have some "Aunt-Neice" time together.
BONJOUR CREPES ON 30TH AVENUE IN ASTORIA, QUEENS. (c) travelincousins.com
It was her suggestions to have crepes today, which not only got me in the "Paris" mood, but was such a culinary delight from the usual food!
Bonjour Crepes is located on 30th Avenue in Astoria and the atmosphere is plain and simple, no-frills, loft-like environment.
ME & AUNT RO AT BONJOUR CREPES (c) travelincousins.com
Lastly, I'll leave you with some lovely pictures my aunt took yesterday at Astoria Park.
THIS PHOTO OF HELL'S BRIDGE WAS TAKEN IN MID-DAY BUT INTO THE SUN, GIVING IT THIS AMAZING COLORATION. (credit: R. Mangini)
MANHATTAN SKYLINE FROM ASTORIA PARK (credit: R. Mangini)
(credit: R. Mangini)
TRIBOROUGH BRIDGE (aka RFK BRIDGE) (credit: R. Mangini)
(credit: R. Mangini)
Tanya's Daily Scoop CURRENTLY TRAVELING IN: VENICE, ITALY
Time for Carnival!
Happy Sunday & Greetings from the Venetian Carnival!
We are having a wonderful time and Cosette already can't wait to come back. It's a family friendly party in the streets, costumes that range from onesies, to superheroes and Halloween-esque, to the very lavish and ornate. All goes here in this maze of a city during the weeks of this carnival that has been an event/occasion ever since:
It's said that the Carnival of Venice was started from a victory of the "Serenissaima Repubblica" against the Patriarch of Aquileia, Ulrico du Treven in the year 1162.
In the honour of this victory, the people started to dance and gather in San Marco Square. Apparently, this festival started on that period and became official in the Renaissance.
In the seventeenth century, the baroque carnival was a way to save the prestigious image of Venice in the world. It was very famous during the eighteenth century. It encouraged licence and pleasure, but it was also used to protect Venetians from present and future anguish.
However, under the rule of the King of Austria, the festival was outlawed entirely in 1797 and the use of masks became strictly forbidden.
It reappeared gradually in the nineteenth century, but only for short periods and above all for private feasts, where it became an occasion for artistic creations.
After a long absence, the Carnival returned in 1979. The Italian government decided to bring back the history and culture of Venice, and sought to use the traditional Carnival as the centerpiece of its efforts.
The music, the dancing, the signing in the streets, in every piazza, everywhere and at all hours!
Sure it's crowded and loud. But either you live here and expect this year after year, or you are traveling here and hopefully know what you were getting yourself into.
What I didn't expect was yesterday and how madly crowded it was while visiting the islands - Murano & Burano (although we did it in reverse order).
We had amazing lighting. Which is something I didn't happen to have on my visit to Burano - so for that I was super excited and snapping away.
But now on the other hand it was a very quiet and almost sleepy island during my last visit and this was anything but that. In fact far from it!
Lighting vs Crowds...tough choice
Anyhow there's lots more, but since my days are so jam packed with fun, I've gotta head out now. But I'll leave you with pics from yesterday when I can and hope to see you back here soon!