As we started our adventure in Reggio Emilia, we were fortunate enough to be invited to opening night at the local theater for “Dirty Dancing” and you know how much I love the red carpet. It was wonderful being invited before anyone else to get a look behind the scenes and take photo’s of this lovely theater. We were so blessed to be able to do this.
One of the great things about the region is the fresh made Reggiano cheeses. I never go to the region without visiting a cheese maker and getting a taste of the product. I support the local grow slow movement by always purchasing cheese while there. Hard cheese can be vacuum wrapped and easily transported back to USA with you. I am always amazed at how they place their hands in boiling hot water to make this cheese. Of course the end product is worth it. One tip I got was never buy cheese that’s less than a year old and 2 years is usually preferred.
After touring the cheese plant, we take a tour of the family farm which houses it’s own restaurant, hotel, swimming pool and animal sanctuary.
We also explored an artisan colony that houses operations for several all female businesses. One of the businesses is an embroidery and restoration specialist who handles many pieces for the catholic church and their articles from the 1800’s. She showed us the slow and meticulous painstaking method to repair, restore and clean valuable memorabilia. There is also a winemaker housed in the colony and she specializes in Red Sparkling Wine, which of course we tasted and yes I was gifted with a bottle of each of her reds to take home. It’s really good wine. During my stay in the region, I was a guest at the Hotel Posta. The hotel is centrally located right in the town square, walking distance to everything and a great place to stay.
Taste cheese, wine and good food are all things I look forward to when visiting Italy. One of the most favorite things I always do while there is indulge in a hot chocolate. When arriving in Milan and when departing Milan I had to sit and have it. It is a luxury for sure that you just can’t indulge in everyday, but it’s not everyday, that I’m in Italy!!!! Ciao for now!!!
I recently had the privilege of visiting Melbourne, Australia. It is a lovely cosmopolitan city that has so much to offer. During my time there, I stayed at the Crowne Promenade Hotel which is part of a larger shopping mall that includes a casino, restaurants, food court, river walk, lots of shopping. The convention center was a short walk from the hotel. There was also a nice park and plenty of restaurants along the river walk leading to the convention center and hotel.
While there I was able to leave Melbourne and venture into it’s suburban surroundings. During this outing, I went to Sovereign Hill which is a replica town of what life would have been like during the gold rush years. Yes you can still actually dig for gold. Every so often someone gets lucky and finds a real gold nugget, but I did not!!!
After wandering around and sifting for gold, we had a lovely lunch at one of the restaurants, before heading to Black Cat Truffles to go truffle hunting. No I did not find any truffles. Both gold digging and truffle hunting are wonderful way to spend your time outside of Melbourne.
And of course, there was food, food and more food. Welcome parties, mingle parties, networking parties and of course a goodbye party. I look forward to my next trip to the region and this time I will stay a lot longer, because there is a lot more to see and experience. I will of course expand my trip by including New Zealand and likely Sydney next time. Its a long plane ride, so staying a while is a better choice. Good Day Mate!!!!
As many of you may know one of my many interests is travel and event planning. It’s why I own my own agency White Orchid Travel & Events, LLC. It is one of the many ways I’m able to use my creativity to express myself and I love it. I can only give my honest opinion which you may or not agree with. As a woman of color, I know that things can be different for me than my white counterparts. So I am aware of this and although I don’t go around expecting to be treated differently, I am keenly aware it could happen.
I do not recommend Airbnb for the above reason mentioned. It seems that people of color, especially, black women are treated far more harshly and physically if something goes wrong or the host is unhappy about something. I have seen the videos of women being manhandled, thrown down a flight of stairs, escorted by the police, etc. I don’t go away and spend my money to be treated like that. You cannot regulate people’s prejudices and stupidity. You can only try to put yourself in as safe a situation as you possible can. I know many women of color who have stated that they have had really good experiences using Airbnb and I’m happy that they have, but until all are treated well, it’s a concern.
The reasons I prefer a hotel over Airbnb anytime are simple. A hotel wants your repeat business and referrals. They count on them. They will work with you and are much more open and flexible when it comes to checking out, extending your stay, meeting your needs, changing your reservation, etc. In other words they will go out of their way to make it work if possible. Worst case scenario and things can’t be worked out, they do not grab you, shove you, push you down stairs, throw your stuff out in the street, etc. They call the police if necessary and ask them to escort you out. Most people know when the police show up, its time to go. However unpleasant, it’s usually an encounter that doesn’t end with physical removal. Keep this in mind the next time you have to decide between the two. I say do whatever works for you, but as for me, I will continue to use hotels over Airbnb every time.