I visited Dubai about one month ago during the peak of the summer season which means it was scorching hot and I wanted to wear comfortable and breezy pieces! You can read more about it on my previous post where you can find a complete travel guide. Dubai´s weather is pretty hot year round except during the Winter months when nights get chilly.
While researching for the trip I often felt lost in the wardrobe department! I wasn´t sure what was appropriate to wear and be respectful of UAE´s dress code. I couldn´t find a straight answer on what was ok for tourist to wear and since it was going to be pretty hot I was trying to figure out if I could wear my normal summer clothes. There were not many articles about it so I went with my gut and the few guidelines I could find from other fellow travelers. These are the man reason why I decided to post about what I found was appropriate to wear.
Dubai is much more “liberal” than other middle eastern cities and there´s tons of expats and tourists, so you ´ll find a mix of everything. I wanted to be respectful of their culture and also feel comfortable so I opted out to wear some more conservative summer clothes and I always carried a long pashmina with me for when I needed to cover my shoulders and to keep warm when the AC was on full blast.
I found out the since most of the places we were visiting are tourist spots then it was ok to show a bit more skin but without being too exposed. I didn´t have any dress code issues during the trip and found out that people are pretty relaxed about it except at the Mosque where you have to adhere to the strict dress code: covered arms, legs (nothing above the ankle), no tight-fitting clothes, ensure that the fabric is opaque and wear a headscarf. My advice is to refrain from wearing the following:
Here are some options of what I wore:
I paired all of my outfits with sandals and comfy espadrilles for walking around the city although it wasn´t the brightest idea to bring espadrilles to the desert safari since the sand was really hot and it would get everywhere I think the best option would have been close toe espadrilles.
Please let me know if you have any specific questions and I´ll be more than happy to reply back!
This summer we went on an incredible trip to Dubai. We spent 5 wonderful and extremely hot days in Dubai. Oh my was it hot! The average temperature was 48C degrees (about 100F) but as everything, there´s a silver lining to it... there were no crowds, which is a rare exception since there´s roughly 14 million of visitors per year in a relatively small city. Dubai is as extreme, opulent and luxurious as it looks in all the pictures and Pinterest boards I saw while planning our trip. At first, you are not sure in which country you are since only 5% of its residents are UAE national citizens and the remaining 95% are expats from all over the world which I thought it was soo cool and unique.
We stayed at the Ritz Carlton Dubai located in the Marina and it was a great location! Another good thing about visiting during the summer months, the hotels have great deals. This is a beachfront hotel and had amazing views of the coast and the Dubai Eye Ferris Wheel which will be completed in a couple of months. We only ventured out to the beach before it got impossibly warm around 7 am but they told us that in the winter months is very pleasant to be outside.
We were a big group of 7 (my entire family!) and we had a blast. I feel that 5 days was enough for us to see the City and of course there´s always some other nearby attractions that you could add to your itinerary or more time at the beach in the winter months. Below are the highlights of our trip, tips & tricks and of course restaurant recommendations.
On our last day in Dubai, we took a private tour to Abu Dhabi with the same company Dubai Private Tours. We didn´t want to see a lot of the touristy attractions in Abu Dhabi so the private tour was a great choice. We were able to pick departure time and what we really wanted to see. We mainly wanted to see the Sheik Zayed Grand Mosque. The one hour trip to Abu Dhabi is totally worth it! The mosque is magnificent! yes, it is a bit of a pain having to cover yourself from head to toe in the blazing heat but it is so beautiful! Every architectural detail was thought through.
Tips and tricks:
If you have any questions please feel free to leave a comment and I´ll make sure to address those. I love to travel and plan trips so I would love to be helpful
The last leg of our spring trip to Europe was Ireland. We´ve seen so much before arriving here that we could have easily been let down by the Emerald Island but it was the complete opposite! I was blown away by Ireland´s people, music scene and beautiful landscapes.
We divided the trip in three: city life in Dublin, nature & nightlife at Galway and R&R at Kinnitty Castle. As usual, we crammed as much as we could see in 4 days and I feel that we got a pretty good taste of Ireland by visiting these three different areas. Ireland is pretty big so it takes a while to drive from point A to point B so we couldn´t make it to the Ring of Kerry because it would have taken a good chunk of our time since it is about 4 1/2 hours drive from Dublin and driving the ring itself takes about 5 hours so we left it out for our next trip.
We started our trip in Dublin, where we stayed at Dylan hotel that it is tucked away from the hustle and bustle but still within walking distance from most of the attractions, we found this hotel through Tablet Hotels one of my favorite booking websites for boutique hotels, you can read more about it on earlier post with 5 tips for travel planning . Here what we did in the two days we where in Dublin:
Jameson Distillery: Be sure to book your tickets in advance because it gets sold out. The distillery was recently renovated and it is so cool! The tour starts with a glass of Jameson and Ginger Ale which I was a bit skeptical at first since I´m not a whiskey fan but turns out I do like Irish Whiskey, I guess it is due to my 2% Irish heritage LOL! The tour was short, fun and informative. At the end of the tour, we ended up staying at the bar and ordering another round of cocktails since the place was so cool and had live music.
Temple Bar area, this area is filled with bars, shops, and restaurants. It was already getting dark by the time we got here so we did what the Irish do best; eat and drink at a pub, There were so many to choose from and they all had live music so it was a blast.
Guinness Tour: This is Dublin´s most popular tour so expect crowds. If you are short on time buy one of the tour bus tickets and you´ll get a discount on the entrance tickets. It wasn´t my favorite activity but it was definitely worth a visit. My favorite part was the end of the tour when we got a beer and drank it at the rooftop.
Trinity College and Books of Kells: Be sure to buy the tickets online so you can avoid the long queues. It was fascinating to read the history behind the elaboration of the books.
We also visited: St. Stephen's Green, St. Patrick Cathedral, Grafton Street ( the 5th Avenue of Dublin) where we window shopped and stopped for irish tea and biscuits.
Where we ate: Awesome Shepperds pie at Boxty, Casual dinner at Miss Sue, seafood at The Seafood Bar and delicious french food at Dax
After two days in Dublin, we headed off to Galway! Our driving skills on the opposite side of the road improve drastically (once we got an automatic transmission car LOL) and our journey to Galway about 2:30 hours was a breeze!
We stayed for two nights in Galway at a beautifully decorated B&B owned by previous gallery owners who transformed a 1930´s house in a contemporary design heaven! I highly recommend staying here when in Galway, the owners are amazing, they gave us great tips on what to do, where to eat and shop. They have a fantastic eye for design and all the shops they recommended were super cool. Besides all of the above, their homemade breakfast is to die for! hands down the best breakfast we had in a long time! The Stop B&B is a 5-minute walk from the city center.
Galway´s streets are filled with musicians, pubs, shops, and restaurants. I really like the city´s vibe. On our first night, we walked around listening to several bands, popped in for a pint at a pub while we worked our appetite for our dinner reservations at Aniar. Aniar has one very well appointed Michelin Star and it´s focused on serving food that´s autochthonous from Ireland so everything they use is source locally. I really liked the Scandinavian contemporary look of the restaurant. The food was AMAZING!!! our best meal in Ireland! The Pre Fix Menu won´t break your bank and each course will linger in your senses for a while. The restaurant is very small with about 8 tables so it is very intimate and cozy. A must when in Galway. It takes Irish cuisine to another level.
On our second day in Galway, we drove 1:30 hours to see the famous Cliffs of Moher, We made sure to hit the road early as we wanted to avoid the tour buses that will start arriving after 11 am and I´m glad we did this! We arrived around 9:30 am and there were only a few other cars but like a clock after 11 am the tour buses started to poured in by the minute so the park started getting crowded pretty quick, After seeing tons of pictures of the Cliffs before our trip all I can say is that they don´t do justice to how pretty and impressive it is!
Thanks to our B&B host we made a few pit stops on our way back to Galway, first at Hazel Mountain Chocolate an artisan chocolate factory where we sample some freshly made chocolate, yum!! and later on at Flaggy Shore where we walked around the beach and saw some impressive views! and lastly, we stopped at Dungaire Castle that was also on the way and took a few pictures and hopped back on the car.
We took a quick shower and changed into warmer clothes and went out for a Gin and Tonic at a local pub where I had the most delicious rose water infused G&T! After this, we went to an Italian restaurant il Vicolo that was delicious and packed with locals which is always a good sign!
Make sure to have some extra room in your luggage because Galway has tons of cool little stores that sell cool art, clothing, house accessories and comfy throw blankets.
After two nights in Galway, we started making our way back to Dublin and stop at Kinnitty Castle that dates back to 1209! It´s in the foothills of the Silver Bloom Mountains where you can hike right up from the Castle´s front door. The Castle is magnificent and it checks all the boxes of what I thought a real castle should look like. We wandered around the castle discovering tons of cool nooks and rooms and stopped for afternoon tea at the drawing room. We ate in the dungeon bar and it was marvelous!
The day after we hiked a 5k trail located on the back side of the property that offered great views of the rolling hills and nearby mountains. The grounds of the castle are very well kept and has very nice wild gardens. It was the perfect place to just sit down, read and enjoy the peace and quiet as our trip was coming to an end. Kinnitty is right in the middle between Galway and Dublin so it was a good way to split the journey in two.
I visited London for the first time back in 2013 and ever since then, I´ve become mildly obsessed with everything British. I love their accent and how they can swear and still sound so proper! but most of all I love their traditions and tea time! So going to the English Countryside quickly became one of my top places to visit! Luckily for me, my husband is totally on board with my English cravings, so much that as a joke he gave me for Christmas and Ancestry kit to prove that I have some British in me and turns out I have 4%!! hahaha that´s enough for me!
We went in early May and it was a wonderful time to visit! It was still a bit cold but Spring was in full bloom so everything looked so green and gorgeous! and we were pretty lucky because it only rained one day for about 30 minutes and that was it! As a tip be aware that drivingon the left side is more difficult than it seems, I was pretty relaxed about it until it was my turn behind the wheel ... oh my it´s so scary! I felt like all the cars were going to hit us! and our biggest mistake was to rent out a Manual transmission car, don´t do it! you are already too stressed trying to stay in the right side of th street that you don´t need the added pressure of shifting gears with your left hand.
Everytime I think about the English Countryside I picture those cute Inns or B&B´s in historic houses so finding an awesome hotel was one of my priorities. After researching different locations and hotels I decided on No.131 Chentelham and it was the best decision ever! I swear that this hotel stay made our trip even more memorable and definetely one for the books! Why did I love it so much:
There´s so many cute towns in the Cotswolds that you can easily spend more than a week exploring them all. We visited a handful of towns around Cheltenham and here is my recap:
Day 1: We started off with an awesome breakfast and head off to Burton on the water, strolled around it, shop a bit and had a cup of tea because it was freezing! later on, we continued to Upper Slaughter, Stow on the Wold, Broadway Tower and then we were it just in time for our dinner reservations at the highly recommended one Michelin Starred restaurant at The Wild Rabbit Inn by chef Tim Allen. The food was spectacular! and I loved the rustic and "homey" interior of the restaurant. When we planned this leg of the trip we knew we wanted to have dinner at The Wild Rabbit in so we chose to visit towns that were nearby. I liked that we could stay as much or as little as we wanted in every town.
Day 2: This day I made a "cool" driving loop from our hotel (I have to admit I even put google maps printouts with our routes on the itineraries... LOL. The highlight fo the day was our afternoon tea at Lords of the Manor Hotel, first of all, isn´t it such a proper name for a hotel! I love all the quirky and proper names that the English Countryside has. Having afternoon tea is absolutely a must while visiting England and especially in the Countryside. When I was researching which place to go for tea I came across Lords of the Manor and it was delicious, I felt like we went back in time and all of the sudden we were in this magnificent manor with beautiful views of the rolling hills. We also stopped at Painswick, Bibury which is the most popular town in the Cotswolds mainly because of Arlington Row and the Sawm Inn which is so picturesque!
We were so stuffed after the afternoon tea (we ate it all! we had to) that we had a quick and relaxed bite to eat along with cocktails at the hotel´s bar Crazy 8 and it was the perfect way to end the day. The hotel also has a very nice and cozy living room with a fireplace so we snuggled up on a couch and read for a while before going heading to bed... I must admit basically we were waiting to be less stuffed to go to our room and eat the homemade cookies and cocoa.
Day 3: After lots of scary and stressful driving through the winding roads we decided to stay at Cheltenham and explore one of the biggest cities in the Cotswolds. We took a leisure walk around the multiple parks and headed to the main street that´s filled with cute shops, restaurants, and pubs. We ate lunch at a local pub and had the most amazing meat pie! We then rented bikes to explore the outskirts of Cheltenham and biked to Ellenborough Park hotel about 20 minutes ride. This hotel is housed in a 15th century renovated estate surrounded but perfect manicured grounds! The hotel itself is worth the visit but we, of course, came here for Afternoon Tea. We got a little table in one of the hotel´s nook and it felt so private and decadent.
We had a pre-dinner cocktail at a nearby bar, and walked to the star of the trip, dinner at Le Champignon Sauvage, this two Micheli Starred restaurant is managed and ran by the chef David Everitt-Mathias and his wife Helen, when you see it from the outside you wouldn´t imagine the quality of the food and service that awaits inside. From start to finish they made us feel at home in this restaurant the food speaks for itself! We had a terrific time and we quickly found out why they have two well deserved Michelin Stars. Helen took great care of us and made our meal memorable. This was by far the best meal of the trip and I highly recommend coming here when you are in the countryside.
Some pictures of the deliciouse food we had a Le Champignon Sauvage, got caught up in the moment and forgot to take pictures of all the courses but trust me when I say it was amazing food!
One of the things I love the most is to to plan a trip! It gives me so much joy! I must say I´m an excesive planner haha I will usually make a detailed itinerary on excel and write down everything... from the big things: flights, hotels, restaurants, etc. to the small details like how to get to and from the airport, distance between the things we are going to see and an approximate cost of every activity but I know not everybody is as crazy as me! So I wanted to share some of the websites and tips that I usually use when planning a trip.
When I plan a trip sometimes I already know the destination but other times is more flexible and it is based on number of days off, weather or if we find a great deal! Planning trips is my hobbie LOL. Sometimes I´ll start rough plans of trips that I want to do and then once they become more "real" I get going with the small details.
Here are my travel tips:
Hope this was helpful and let me know if you have any other questions! Happy Travels!
This past May we had 24 hours in Paris in between our flights and since we´ve been in Paris before so we were not pressed to see all the major sights: Eiffel tower, Champs Elysees, Arc du Triumph and so on... but if you only have 24 hours and it´s your first time visiting I highly recomend taking one of the hop on hop off buses this way you can see them all in a short period of time.
This time we wanted to stay in a smaller more local neighborhood were we could walk everywhere, see a different side of Paris and pretend to be parisians for a day. While searching for hotels I came across Hotel Magenta 38 and it was fantastic! The hotel is located in Gare Du Nord where you can easily walk to lots of neighborhoods and Cana St Martin. This boutique hotel has trendy scandiavian inspired decor and lots of perks for the customers. There´s daily craft beer happy hour, Nespresso machines, amazing breakfast and lovely rooms. As soon as you step in you realize you are not in the typical chain hotel. This hotel was just down my alley: distinctive decor, nice perks, and cheerful environment. I usually prefer to stay at Boutique hotels because they have more charm and personality. Also, it doesn´t hurt that it was budget friendly.
After we checked -in and dropped our bags we grab a map from the helpful front desk/concierge and hit the streets. We didn´t have to walk too far (half a block LOL) to find our first stop: Cafe Le Bistro a nice and very parisian café that we read great things about. It´s everything we were looking for,.. small, quaitnt, not touristy and good no frills french food. We had had a glass of wine, onion soup and mussels and fries yum!. While we sip wine we planed the rest of our afternoon before the best part of the day: diner at Frenchie! but I´ll tell you more about later on. Here is a quick glance of where we strolled in the afternoon:
The highlight of our trip was diner at Frenchie by chef Gregory Marchand! we´ve been looking so much forward to trying it out. It is a small restaurat tucked away in a cobble stome street at Rue Du Nil. They offer a 5 course tasting menu with wine pairing for 125 Euros, a steal for a 1 michelin star restaurant. I love to be surprised by the chef and not having to think about what to order. The meal was marvelous and the setting was romantic and cozy.
Next morning we had a few hours before our flight so after breakfast we headed towards Le Marais district. This area has tons of cool cafes and shops. We stoped for a quick capuccino and at several shops where we bought lots of things for our house.
Then it was off to the aiport to stock up on macaroons for the short flight to Copenhaghen. Au Revoir Paris!
Whila planning the second part of our honeymoon we were looking for different tickets and routes to Europe since we wanted to go to the English Countryside and Ireland (I´ll share those in another post later), I came across with a budget freiendly option with Iceland Air that includes a free stopover in Iceland for up to 7 days! How amazing! Iceland had been in my buckelist for a loooong time so this was perfect! Sadly I made a rookie mistake and tought two days in Iceland would be good but no... I wished we could have stayed at least 4 to 5 days but on the bright side we know have an excuse to visit Iceland again. Iceland is a very big island and it takes a while to get from point A from point B so I definetly recommend staying at least 4 days so you can explore more areas of the island.
We stayed in Reykjavik in a small and quaint hotel nothing fancy at all but since we were going to be out most of the day it didn´nt make sense for us. It is centrally located so we walked both nights to Laugavegur street where most of the restaurants and shops are. 22 Hill Hotel was recently renovated and the rooms were big and comfortable. Here are a few tips about Iceland:
Here is our packed itinerary (it wouldnt be us othwerwise LOL):
Day 1: Golden Circle
Our flight landed at 6:30am we picked our rental at the airport and drove 40 min to Reykjavik dropped our luggage and headed off for breakfast. Iceland has some of the best baked goods I´ve tried! I would give it a thrid place (1. Denmark, 2. France... LOL in case you wanted to know!). We went to Sandholt Bakarí and it was delicious! We had a hard time trying to decided what to order. We ordered an assortment of pastries, croissants and of course Skyr, Iceland´s famous yoghurt,
The Gold Circle is a route between Iceland´s most iconic sights and it is also the #1 tourist attraction. Since we came here in April there were not many tourist as in the summer so it was all good!. The roads are mostly desserted so it´s pretty easy to drive around. If you only do quick stops it will take about 5 hours, we did it in 9 since we took our time in every stop and took some extra ones for lunch and snacks :).
Thingvellir National Park: this is a UNESCO World Heritage Center and a great place for history nerds hahaha but also for nature and photography lovers as all Iceland. There´s walking trails in different lenghts that you can take depending on your time.
Geysir: Strokkur is Iceland´s most famous geyser and it lives by it´s fame. It is very active and it is very fn to walk around. There´s also big restaurant and shops accross the street that offers cool wool products and awesome food. This was the best of all we saw in all the stops.
Gulfoss Waterfall: this places is juts marvelous! I saw lots of pictures of this waterfall in the summer but I must say I liked the contrast of the water and ice that we got to see. A must see!
Kerio: This is a volcanic crater lake and the pictures don´t do justice. The colors and the emerald green of the water are just out of this world.
We drove back to the hotel and the scenary changes so quickly that you are never bored! I´m not a huge fan of driving long distances but this trip went by so fast. After much delibaration we decided to go to Ostabudin for dinner, this is a cheese and gourmet products store that also has a tiny restaurant next to it with about 6 tables This dinner was one of the highlights of our trip! The restaurant is cozy and warm, food was A-M-A-Z-I-N-G. We loved everything about it! We ordered a meat and cheese plate that included puffin, goose and creamy cheeses, for the entree we shared the goose confit with game meatballs and I still can savour the mix of flavours of the different meats and the awesome port wine sauce. For dessert we had a skyr mouse with berries so simple and so perfect. This was the perfect way to end the day while sipping red wine. This meal turned out to be one of the most memorable of our 3 week long trip.
Day 2: Glacier Hiking
It was so hard to choose between all the different tour options available... oh men! This is why I wished we could have stay at least two more days. A friend recommended Guide to Iceland as a portal to find the different tours and tour operators and t was great help! They help us to map out our routes and gave us good advice. We decided to do the Skafatell Ice Climbing and Hiking with Troll Expeditions and it was absolutely amazing! Our guide was awesome and we were the only one´s that day so it was our own private tour. The glacier is breathtaking and it was very cool to see hundreds of years old ice. Ice climbing was more challenging that I was expecitng but it was exhilarting and super fun! I´m glad we chose this tour because it gave us the perfect mix between adrenaline rush and peaceful views from the glacier.
After our glacier tour we hit the road towards Reykjavil and make a couple of stops on the way. The first one was to pet the icelandic horses... they are so freakin cute! LOL and to see the impressive Skógafoss Waterfall! Skógafoss is one of the biggest waterfalls in Iceland, with a drop of 60 meters and a width of 25 meters, and you can walk right up to, but be prepared to be drenched. It is just overwhelming standing next to it.We climbed up the stairs to get another view pont from the top and there´s a hiking trail from there on that looked promising.
San Francisco will always have a special place in my heart! This is were my now husband and I had our first apartment together and we have sweet memories from our time in here. SF is by far my favorite city in the US and sometimes I wished we never left! Why do I love it so much?? there's soo many reasons but I'll say my top three would be: 1. The views 2. It's food and wine scene and 3.it's laid back and open vibe.
We recently went back for a long weekend trip to visit friends and I created a short and sweet itinerary for this trip... you could easily spend a week or more over here and at the end of the post I'll give some recommendations of day trips and other things to do if you have a bit more time.
I'll recommend to stay in the Union Square area; even though is touristy its the perfect location for a short trip because it is right int he middle of everything... don't be afraid of the Tenderloin area... it might be a bit grubby but it is not unsafe.
Get your sneakers ready (SF's uniform anyways) and head out to explore the City.
Day 2: this day you can see some of the best streets in SF for people watching, shopping and eating.
Day 3: On the last day in SF take an uber, cable car or walk (so you can earn some extra calories) to the Mission District. The Mission District to me is where all of what SF represents comes together! I love strolling it's streets and peaking in on the many little shops, cafes and restaurants. The best streets are Valencia St and Mission St and of course Dolores Park.
There's tons of good food over here and something for every appetite. In the Mission District you can find the widest array of international food.
If you have more days in SF these are also other cool things to do around:
I've been super busy in my 8-5 job so I hadn't got the chance to post in a while but here it is! We spent this past NYE in Vegas and we agreed that 4 days is more than enough to spend in Vegas hahaha, no seriously, you could definitely spend more time here but I feel that in 4 days you can see all the highlights, eat in your top pick restaurants, gamble, party, shop and watch some shows.
I'm past the partying stage and I'm not a gambler (this time I set aside a budget of $40 to gamble haha that it became $186 so maybe I should consider gambling?) mostly because I rather eat, drink and shop! and even though I'm not drawn to Vegas because of it's most popular pastime I always have a blast over there.
Here is a glimpse of our itinerary and my top recommendations. The best part of Vegas it is the variety of good quality restaurants so the biggest issue it is which one to choose from. We stayed at the Mandarin Oriental and I absolutely loved it! This was our first time staying at hotel without a casino and I feel that it was the perfect choice for us, it is right next to Aria and within 5 min walk to The Cosmopolitan so you can easily get to the casino and get the party ambiance but without all the drawbacks of staying at one of the big hotels i.e long lines to check in, crowds and noise. The Mandarin was a superb experience from beginning to end. I specially loved the bedrooms and their big bath tub.
I have to admit the on this trip I did not take the best pictures because food was so delicious and company was even better that I just couldn't afford to take perfect ones! After all that's how vacation's should be. Here are my top pics for restaurants:
Picasso at Bellagio. This two star Michelin by chef Julian Serrano is worth every penny! Plus they have a fantastic view of the Bellagio Foundations so extra points for romance. Their 4 course Prix Menu are well balanced and have a little bit for everybody.
Nobu Inside Caesar's Palace, come here for the small plates and not for the sushi. The sushi is just mew.. but the rest of the dishes are amazing! I love that it is Tapas style so we all got to try several dishes. One of my favorites were: black cod miso, Lobster tacos and Blue fin toro tartare
Bouchon: Thomas Keller, French Laundry's chef (high on my bucket list!) created a beautiful menu filled with French classics and an elegant yet casual restaurant inside The Venetian. Loved the ambiance and the comfort food. This is also a great spot for Brunch with nice views of the hotel's gardens.
Bardot Brasserie: came here for brunch after NYE. It has the most romantic and "old school" bar that it is great for a pre-dinner or show cocktail. It is located on Aria's second floor so it is more secluded and intimate. We've been following chef Michael Mina since we moved to San Francisco and this one does not disappoints!
Milos Estiatorio: This is a great spot for Lunch inside The Cosmopolitan. They have super fresh seafood that you can actually pick from and they also offer a light pre-fix lunch menu that won't break the bank. Had a terrific white wine from Greece, a first!
Julian Serrano : A Spanish restaurant inside Aria by Julian Serrano (way more affordable than Picasso) with a great selection of Spanish classics and more fusion dishes. Bright and cheerful decor throughout the restaurant.
oh well and no trip is ever complete with a mandatory stop at Shake Shack! :)
Besides eating... we did more things! My highlight of the trip was watching Bruno Mars at the new theater in the Monaco Hotel... OMG it was the best! We also watched O at the Bellagio and we were speechless! On other trips with seeing Love and KA by Cirque Du Soleil but so far "O" it's my favorite!
This year we had a very different Christmas since it was the first time we spent it away from our families. We always rotate between spending it in Denmark and Costa Rica but this year we thought it would be nice to spend it in the mountains with our little family of 2 + 2 dogs!
We rented an Airbnb cabin in the middle of nowhere about 30 minutes from Vail, CO and oh boy was it amazing! We loved our time at the cabin! We both like to cook so we chose ambitious recipes for every night. We loaded up the car with almost all of our kitchen utensils (for sure we over did it!), put the dogs in the backseat and then we hit the road.
Even though we planned daily dinners at the cabin we still wanted to try some of the good restaurants in Vail, after some research (of course!) and I discovered Mountain Standard a gastro pub located in the middle of Vail village. This place is hands down one of the best lunches we've had! It's a very casual and cozy restaurant that cooks most of its food on an open wood fire. We had the grilled salmon and an open face tuna sandwich that reminded me a lot of the Danish traditional Smørrebrød. We also had two delicious "brunchy" type cocktails that did not disappoint.
After our delicious lunch we walked around Vail Village to soak in the Christmas atmosphere! The village couldn't look better! I always feel that the snow makes everything look more magical. We strolled through the shops, restaurants and pubs filled with after-skiers and stopped for a hot chocolate, I know it is a cliche but it is for a reason!
After a day in Vail we headed back to the cabin and started cooking Christmas eve dinner: rack of lamb with mint jelly, roasted vegetables and potato au gratin! yum! and then for dessert we had the traditional danish Christmas dessert ris ala mande which is a rice pudding with almonds and amareno cherries. The rest of the days we chilled, read, played in the snow with the dogs and watched Christmas movies, the most perfect 4 days!
Hope everyone had a great time during the holidays!