Get Away With Fran

March 15, 2010

Take me to Miami

Filed under: Travel Advice,U.S. — Tags: , , — admin @ 1:27 pm

16th Floor Pool Deck

OK, I know I am the envy of my East Coast pals today, as I have landed in Miami where it is warm and sunny (and not rainy and dreary as it’s been for days now in Boston).

There is something wonderful about coming out of the airport and feeling, well, kind of sweaty, but in that good, “I am in Miami” sort of way.

I am staying at the much-lauded, 411-room Epic Hotel in downtown, a Kimpton property. And my first impressions are this cool design hotel deserves all the praise.

EPIC Main Exterior (lo-res)

Literally I had a fleet of bellmen in crisp tan uniforms snap my bag out of the cab before I could blink an eye.

Lobby- Living Room

In the lobby (above) the equally well-dressed and efficient front desk team got me speedily checked in and within minutes I was in my airy, 18th floor room, checking out my very own deck, which overlooks the property’s hip pool/social area on the 16th floor (top photo, except there are bikini clad bods there at present), tall residential buildings and the ocean beyond.

One Bedroom Suite

Complimentary wine is served poolside during an hour-long daily social hour, starting at 5, so I may just hop down for a swig before I head off to meetings and other social obligations tonight. I’m in town to cover Cruise Shipping Miami (formerly known as Seatrade), the annual gathering of the cruise lines and ports and others affiliated with cruising. In the next few days, I’ll fill you in on the latest and great in the world of cruising.

But meanwhile, I heard the San Antonio Spurs are staying here tonight. Lots of very tall men walking around tonight. That, and free Internet access (every guestroom at the Epic has wireless and a complimentary desktop too). Woo-hoo.

October 21, 2009

Stressed in Boston – but maybe a Princess Cruise will help

Filed under: Cruise,Travel Advice,U.S. — Tags: , , , , , , , — admin @ 5:58 am

Even travel writers have off days and I was having one yesterday. But today I woke up with a new, and better, attitude because it turns out I live in one of the most stressed out cities in America. So I am not alone.

My epiphany came courtesy of Princess Cruises, which has released the results of a Harris Interactive survey it commissioned on – get this – Life Balance (gee, can you tell the cruiseline is based in California?).

My city, Boston, tops the list of  places where people’s lives are not in balance, as in, we are crazy stressed out or, presumably, lead unbalanced existences. More stressed out than Beantown, is Chicago and Houston and rounding out the list is Los Angeles and San Diego.

Cities where people are more mellow. or at least claim to have balance in their lives, are Miami, Minneapolis, Cincinnati, Las Vegas and Dallas/Fort Worth (hot and lively, boring, boring, crazy lively, boring, so go figure).

The survey, according to the surveyors, finds “Americans continue to strive for the ultimate life balance, which includes juggling work and personal priorities” but concludes “only approximately one-quarter of people in the U.S. actually have achieved this goal.” Gee, and you thought (more…)

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