Tag Archives: Hotels

My Favorite Things to See, Do & Eat in Boston

Have you been to Boston? It may seem like a strange question, but I find that a lot of people haven’t been to one of my favorite cities. I’m not exactly a tourist there, and not exactly a local, either. I’m sort of an in-betweener because I went to college there and lived in Boston after that, so I know the area really well. I’ve been on a kick lately of spending more time in East Coast cities that I love (like my recent trip to NYC: A New Yorker Returning Home for a Few Days). Boston is for sure one of my top five favorite American cities. Here are some of my choices for places to see. There’s a ton of history to explore in the Boston area, but I’m skipping those more obvious sites, and suggesting some that are a bit more off the beaten path. And we’ll get to food in a minute!

The Boston Public Library system was founded in 1848, so the original building is a classic architecturally wonderful structure. It’s on Boylston Street. Between 2013 and 2016, it was renovated and a modern extension was added. It’s awesome! Often times I find library renovations, or even new library buildings, like the one in San Diego, lacking in design, lighting, spaces for working and reading, and a generally welcome feeling. The addition to the Boston Public Library gets two thumbs up from me. Do stop in and see for yourself.

Boston Public Library. Image: http://www.travelandleisure.com/attractions/landmarks-monuments/boston-public-library-unique-facts-history

Continue reading

My Alaska Airlines Bump: There’s a First Time for Everything

There’s a first time for everything, and recently on an Alaska Airlines flight, I volunteered to be bumped. It’s not that I’ve never heard the call for volunteers before. We all have. But something about this time made me ask myself if now was the time and this was the opportunity to do it. After all, can a bona fide travel blogger NOT have a bump experience to talk about? Given the crazy day I ended up having, I’ll never forget my first time!

I was originally on a morning Alaska Airlines nonstop flight from San Diego to Boston. I’ve taken this flight before but always in the winter months. Apparently, since it’s the only nonstop of the day to Boston, it can get crowded. I heard the call for volunteers before we started boarding the flight.

Great Circle Mapper: San Diego (SAN) to Boston (BOS)

Continue reading

Trip Report: Butler Suite at the All-Inclusive Hyatt Ziva Rose Hall in Montego Bay, Jamaica

I landed in Montego Bay, Jamaica, and was happy to see a Hyatt Ziva Rose Hall check-in desk inside the airport, just past immigration.  The employees were efficient and served drinks while they checked you in. Within minutes, the Hyatt hotel shuttle was there to pick us up.  The trip to the Hyatt Ziva was less than 30 minutes.

Ziva vs. Zilara

Hyatt offers two all inclusive products: the Ziva, which is for families, and the Zilara, which does not allow children.  In Jamaica, the properties are next to each other.  Both products share a common beachfront and you can go to any of the restaurants on either property.  Of course, if you have children, they are not allowed on the Zilara side, which includes the Zilara beach, pool, and restaurants.  The Ziva has its own beach, pool, and restaurants so this would probably not be a huge problem.

The Butler Suite

I was upgraded to a butler suite.  The room is large, as you would expect of a suite, including a mini-bar that was free, and the most unique feature was the butler service. This room would normally cost over $1,500 USD per night, but I didn’t pay anywhere near that.

Butler suite with balcony overlooking the ocean at the Hyatt Ziva in Montego Bay, Jamaica

Continue reading

Hyatt Denied My Best Rate Guarantee Claim

I was in the planning stages of a trip to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, when I started looking at Hyatt hotels options.  I quickly found the Hyatt Ziva and it captured my attention. With rates on their website being easy to search, I tried many rate options, including AAA, to see what the best price would be.  The Hyatt website listed the room rate at $838 / night. AAA and other discounts yielded only slightly lower rates.

Hyatt Direct Booking Quote

Continue reading