Author Archives: Shelli

About Shelli

Shelli Stein is a health and fitness entrepreneur who travels the world in search of culture, food, and fun! Besides contributing to Travel with Grant, you can find her at Joy in Movement.

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Should I Use Citi Thank You Points or Membership Reward Points / AMEX Business Platinum to Book American Airlines Flight?

I have a miles and points spending decision to make and thought I’d ask TWG readers for advice. After all, when Grant asks for advice, he gets lots of great input. I have a one-way flight I need to purchase and am considering two options:

  • Option #1: Use Citi Thank You Points. I have a nice stash of them and have been looking for a good use. The flight is on American for $242.64 and requires 15,165 Citi Thank You Points. I have the Citi Prestige Credit Card, so I’m getting 1.6 cents per point (CPP).
  • Option #2: Use Membership Reward Points. As of March 30, new rules will go into place for the AMEX Business Platinum card, so that seems like an interesting option as well. The flight would cost $242.64 or 24,264 Membership Rewards Points. American Airlines is my designated airline so I’ll get a 50% refund on those points. Also, as of March 30, because first you purchase the flight and then get reimbursed when you use MR points, I’ll get 5X points for the AMEX spend.

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Indulging in Mate and Dulce de Leche in Buenos Aires

Two of my favorite fun eating adventures in Buenos Aires are drinking Mate and enjoying Dulce de Leche. On my recent trip to Buenos Aires, I overindulged enjoyed both, but realized I still had a lot to learn about Mate and Dulce de Leche.

Let’s look at Mate, first!

A quick tip: When you order mate (pronounced, mah-tay) be sure to order the classic mate. Otherwise you’ll get a mate teabag! Mate is the symbol of friendship and was originally a traditional “gaucho” (local cowboys) drink. Then the Spaniards adopted it, and so it goes throughout its five centuries of mate history. In Argentina, it is the beverage of highest consumption, second only to water.

Mate in Buenos Aires

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4 Less Traveled Sites to See in Buenos Aires

It’s easy to come up with a list of the top sites to see in Buenos Aires as there’s a lot to see and do. It’s a fascinating city and according to most lists, the most visited city in South America. On a recent trip, I enjoyed 4 sites that either don’t come up on many lists or are at the bottom of lists, but I think they deserve higher ranking.

  1. El Zanjón, which is in the San Telmo area of the city. If you like architecture, archeology, and history, this tour of a historic dwelling puts it all together. As with many tours, it depends on who leads you through your experience. The tour lasts about an hour and the older woman who guided us had a wealth of information, not just about this site but about Argentine history as well. She also had a great sense of humor!
Image source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/tanenhaus/2400379236

Image source: https://www.flickr.com/photos/tanenhaus/2400379236

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Revisiting Shelli’s World Coffee Tour – Burly And The Bean in San Diego

A few months ago, my World Coffee Tour covered the coffee scene in San Diego. I want the Bean Around The World series to be a growing series, so I’m excited to tell you about a new addition to the San Diego coffee scene.  I found out about Burly And The Bean from a friend whose family lives in the Azalea Park area of San Diego. Now maybe as a tourist, you’re thinking you might never go to the Azalea Park neighborhood, but since Azalea Park has a bunch of AirBNB options, you just might find yourself there! In fact, when I went over to Burly yesterday, I met a food blogger from Belgium who was at Burly because he and his family were in an AirBNB unit just up the block.

Burly And The Bean is owned by Justin and his wife, Vanessa. Justin had been in the construction business before venturing out to the coffee kiosk scene. His kiosk did so well, he constructed an outdoor space that’s like no other you’ll find.  Watch the video below to get a sense of the space and of Justin and Vanessa. One thing I can guarantee: you’ll meet lots of fun folks and have some great conversations as well. Justin and Vanessa are passionate about coffee and about Azalea Park and providing a wonderfully welcome space to everyone who drops by.

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My Amazing Experience Interacting with the Park Hyatt Butler Service Team

There’s been a lot written about Hyatt lately, especially with all the changes in the Hyatt elite status program. And oddly enough, much of the blogging about Hyatt and all the changes took place while I was enjoying a stay at a Park Hyatt! So I couldn’t help but think about why I like Hyatt so much and why I bother maintaining elite status. Rather than just adding my voice to the pro or con discussion about the changes and whether maintaining status is worth it, I decided to explore and write about one of my most favorite luxury amenities of Hyatt hotels and especially the Park Hyatt’s: butler service.

My seven night stay at the Hotel Palacio Duhau Park Hyatt in Buenos Aires gave me the perfect opportunity to do this. This was my fifth stay at a Park Hyatt, but in the past, I’d never stayed at one for more than a few days. This stay in Buenos Aires gave me the chance to experience getting to know the butlers, and I sat down with three of the five-team member butlers and had fun, engaging conversations with them about their roles, how they see us (the guests), and other questions of mine they answered. If you’re like me and you enjoy getting to know how hotels operate behind the scenes, you’ll enjoy reading about the butlers!

Image source: https://buenosaires.park.hyatt.com/en/hotel/home.html

Image source: https://buenosaires.park.hyatt.com/en/hotel/home.html

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