Travel Expert and Radio Talk Show Host Stephanie Abrams - Travelers411 Travel Radio Shownotes - June 25, 2011
"Travelers411" Radio Show - June 25, 2011
Canon Stephen Neill shows President Obama the church records from Templeharry Church on the occassion of the visit of the President and First Lady to Moneygall - May 23 2011 (Official White House photo: Pete Souza) Commemorating President Obama's Visit to Ireland at the Oval Office Bar, Shanahan's on the Green, Dublin, Ireland; Stephanie Announces the Winner of Tickets to James Taylor Concert at Tanglewood; July 2011 Airfare and Hotel Deals from CheapOAir and CheapOStay.

Listen to the show in Windows Media Format:      hour1      hour2

Listen to the show in MP3 Format:      hour1      hour2

Click here to subscribe to the podcast for this broadast.

Hour 1

Topics Include:

Link to this segment

Martin Clegg, Managing Director, Shanahan’s on the Green, Dublin Ireland.
www.shanahans.ie

Travel Expert Stephanie Abrams and the "Travelers411" Radio Show visit the Oval Office Bar with Martin Clegg, Managing Director of Shanahan's on the Green in Dublin, Ireland. Shanahan's was started by John Shanahan, who invented the Hooked on Phonics program. "The whole restaurant is in a townhouse building and has fantastic food," says Stephanie. "There are great steaks imported from the U.S. and excellent pea soup that's a meal in itself."

Canon Stephen Neill shows President Obama the church records from Templeharry Church on the occassion of the visit of the President and First Lady to Moneygall - May 23 2011 (Official White House photo: Pete Souza).
Canon Stephen Neill shows President Obama the church records from Templeharry Church on the occassion of the visit of the President and First Lady to Moneygall - May 23 2011 (Official White House photo: Pete Souza).

The Oval Office Bar, which is one level lower than the main restaurant at Shanahan's on the Green, is a tribute to U.S. presidents and their Irish heritage. The bar not only has the rocking chair that John F. Kennedy used on Air Force One, but a photo of the president sitting in a rocking chair, blown up so that it looks like he's sitting at the bar. The rest of the bar is filled with U.S. presidential memorabilia. Stephanie is curious about how the Oval Office Bar will commemorate President Obama's recent visit to Ireland.

Baptism of Fulmouth Kearney (baptized as Timothy) the 3rd Great Grandfather of President Barack Obama. Entry is half way down the page.
Baptism of Fulmouth Kearney (baptized as Timothy) the 3rd Great Grandfather of President Barack Obama. Entry is half way down the page.

How are things in Dublin at the moment? "Things are very well," says Martin. "It's 21 degrees [Celsius] and there are lots of tours around. There are a lot of American tours in Ireland at the moment; visitors are taking us up on the great value being offered now." Indeed, Shanahan's and the Oval Office Bar are something of a watering hole for American visitors to Ireland. The bar offers the same menu as the main-level restaurant, but in a more casual atmosphere.

JFK's Rocking Chair on display at Shanahan’s on the Green, Dublin Ireland.
JFK's Rocking Chair on display at Shanahan’s on the Green, Dublin Ireland.

The bar has a kind of club atmosphere, with leather club chairs and a green plaid carpet that features the White House crest. "I remember the first time I walked into the bar and saw JFK staring out from the rocking chair," says Stephanie. "It's warm, cozy, and certainly big enough for a lively crowd. There's a fireplace and wonderful framed displays with lights over them, so you can really see what's inside."

Street sweepers on Grafton Street in Dublin, Ireland.
Street sweepers on Grafton Street in Dublin, Ireland.

The display cases feature memorabilia from many different U.S. presidents. "We have lots of memorabilia, mostly of presidents with Irish connections," says Martin. "If they didn't have one, we gave them one!" For presidents who served before the camera was invented, the bar has included drawings, portraits, or letters and documents associated with that administration. "It's a history lesson just walking around the room," adds Stephanie. "You don't even have to think of it as a bar – it's just wonderful to have a place where you can go and have it feel like home."

Pedestrians on on Grafton Street in Dublin, Ireland.
Pedestrians on on Grafton Street in Dublin, Ireland.

After President Obama visited Ireland in the spring of 2011, the Oval Office Bar is hoping to commemorate his Irish connection. "We've sent a letter to Ambassador Rooney in Ireland – you may know him, he owns the Pittsburgh Steelers – requesting a signed picture of Obama," explains Martin. "We're just waiting on the picture, and then we'll have him up there. So the next time you have dinner with us, you'll have another president looking down at you."

Shanahan's exterior, Dublin, Ireland.
Shanahan's exterior, Dublin, Ireland.

It's easier than ever to visit Ireland, thanks to short flights and improved roads. "I like to fly over to London on British Airways on their 8:15 a.m. flight, then go to Dublin the next day," says Stephanie. "From Boston, it's just 5 ½ hours to Dublin; it's 6 hours from New York. If you fly into Shannon, you can pick up your car from Dooley Car Rental and it's 2 hours from Galway to Dublin, thanks to the new road." Martin agrees, adding that the new road system has really helped visitors – and residents – get around Ireland.

Shanahan's exterior, Dublin, Ireland.
Shanahan's exterior, Dublin, Ireland.

Visitors aged 65 and older need not even worry about renting a car, since train and bus travel are complimentary. "If you're aged 65 an older, train travel is free, to residents and visitors alike," says Martin. "So if you flew into the west coast, you could hop a train to Dublin and it wouldn't even cost you. Free travel is also available on our bus service as well."

Related Photo Galleries:
Clontarf Castle in Dublin Glasnevin Cemetary in Dublin

Travelers411 Community Forums - This interview's thread:
http://www.travelers411.com/forums/showthread.php?t=5843

For more information visit www.shanahans.ie


Travel Tips:

Stephanie just saw "Midnight in Paris" and "Green Lantern" and recommends both summer movies to travelers looking for inspiration. "If you've never been to Paris, 'Midnight in Paris' will inspire you to go," she says. "And 'Green Lantern' made me think of Ireland, of course. It was really amazing, really good – and I've slept through the best of the superhero movies."

Eifel Tower in Paris, France.
Eifel Tower in Paris, France.

Brand names can often be an indicator of quality or price in the travel industry. "You know that some hotels will be a splurge, based on the name," says Stephanie. "So you can stay there, or if you had a big expensive dinner, you can stay somewhere that you know is going to be more economical." Many destinations are now promoting medical tourism, which often enables people without health insurance to undergo treatment or provides services at a much lower cost than in the U.S. In an effort to reassure travelers that they are getting U.S.-quality medical care, though, Johns Hopkins is opening annexes to extend its brand of health care overseas.

Jordan Romero became the youngest person ever to summit Mount Everest on May 22, 2010. Pictured are Team Jordan - Jordan, his father, Paul, and stepmom, Karen.
Jordan Romero became the youngest person ever to summit Mount Everest on May 22, 2010. Pictured are Team Jordan - Jordan, his father, Paul, and stepmom, Karen.

Stephanie just spoke with a family that's planning to climb the tallest point in every state in the U.S. This made her think about Mount Greylock in Massachusetts. "On crazy days I'll sometimes drive up there for lunch," she says. "You'll meet a lot of serious hikers going through there on the Appalachian Trail. It's not expensive, but it's a million-dollar place. The area where you eat lunch or have dinner (by reservation only) has a cathedral ceiling, a fireplace made of local stone, and a view of five states on a clear day. And on a not-so-clear day, it's still very romantic."


Guests Include:

Martin Clegg, Managing Director, Shanahan’s on the Green, Dublin Ireland.
www.shanahans.ie

Hour 2

Topics Include:

Link to this segment

Ray, Travelers411 Radio Show Prize Winner.
www.travelers411.com

Travel Expert Stephanie Abrams and the "Travelers411" Radio Show congratulate Ray, Winner of two tickets to Film Night at Tanglewood on August 20, 2011. Ray hails from Albany, New York, and was the runner-up in the James Taylor tickets contest; Stephanie and the Travelers411 staff were so touched by his story that they just had to come up with another prize.

Tanglewood music-goers packing in their picnic's for listening on the lawn with as many creature comforts of home as will fit on a wagon.
Tanglewood music-goers packing in their picnic's for listening on the lawn with as many creature comforts of home as will fit on a wagon.

What did Ray say in his winning entry? "I noted that I've been married to my wife for just over 2 years," he explains. "It's been filled with love and laughter. I just enjoy her company more than anything. It's interesting that last year, we celebrated our 2nd anniversary – but we get along so well that we both thought it was our third! Right after we got together, everything just clicked. People who met us months after we met thought we had been together for years. She's truly the love of my life."

Deluxe lawn accomodations at Tanglewood.
Deluxe lawn accomodations at Tanglewood.

Stephanie was so pleased to have the opportunity to smile over this entry that she came up with two seats in the Shed for Film Night. This year, John Williams will conduct the Boston Pops as they play excerpts of his own film scores (which include the music for Star Wars, Indiana Jones, Schindler's List, Memoirs of a Geisha, and Harry Potter) along with clips from the movies. "He doesn't always feature his own films, but it's so exciting when he's conducting a work that he composed and you're seeing the film at the same time," says Stephanie. Ray adds that his anniversary is in August, so an evening at Tanglewood is a perfect way to celebrate.

Travelers411 Community Forums - This interview's thread:
http://www.travelers411.com/forums/showthread.php?t=3838

For more information visit www.travelers411.com


Link to this segment

Pat, Travelers411 Radio Show Prize Winner.
www.travelers411.com

Travel Expert Stephanie Abrams and the "Travelers411" Radio Show welcome Pat, Winner of two tickets to the James Taylor concert in Ozawa Hall at Tanglewood and an overnight stay at the Berkshire Crowne Plaza in Pittsfield, Massachusetts. "We were smitten by one particular entry – well, actually, a couple," explains Stephanie. "So one got tickets to Film Night at Tanglewood and one got the James Taylor tickets."

James Taylor in Concert at Tanglewood's Ozawa Hall.
James Taylor in Concert at Tanglewood's Ozawa Hall.

Pat is actually from Pittsfield, Massachusetts. As he explained in his winning entry, he wanted the tickets for his wife, who has just retired after 40 years of teaching first grade in Lee, Massachusetts. "She started in the one-room schoolhouse there," Pat says. "They actually did have one in the 1970s! Then she went over to the main school for the rest of her years. She just retired this week; the first graders and her colleagues threw about 4 different parties, and now she's cleaning out her classroom and donating the things she had there."

James Taylor in Concert at Tanglewood's Ozawa Hall.
James Taylor in Concert at Tanglewood's Ozawa Hall.

Over the years, Pat's wife developed some signature celebrations for her students. "She used to celebrate Pi Day, March 14, plus our daughter was born that day," Pat recalls. "She also celebrated La Pavana. That's the equivalent of Santa Claus in Italy – it's a woman who looks like a witch but gave away candy to children on Little Christmas, January 5. And my wife and another teacher started tapping trees for maple syrup with the children years ago."

The Downtown Pittsfield Massachusetts Berkshire Crowne Plaza Hotel.
The Downtown Pittsfield Massachusetts Berkshire Crowne Plaza Hotel.

Pat himself is a longtime Massachusetts resident. He was born in Salem, but moved out west in the 1950s. After living in California, New Mexico, and Rhode Island, he returned to his home state. "I go back to Salem every couple years," he says. "We used to go back every October when the kids were younger and I had a cousin involved with the Salem Chamber of Commerce. The town doesn't just want to be known for witches, though. Nathaniel Hawthorne worked in the customs house there, before coming to western Massachusetts and living in Pittsfield."

The Downtown Pittsfield Massachusetts Berkshire Crowne Plaza Hotel.
Pool at the Downtown Pittsfield Massachusetts Berkshire Crowne Plaza Hotel.

He also lived in Boston for 6 years while attending pharmacy school. "On Friday nights, we used to go to the pub," he recalls. "It was kind of a gathering place for politicians in the west end of Boston, near Storrow Drive and all that. When there was all the construction on that road, we used to see signs in apartment buildings that said, 'If you lived here, you'd be home by now.' And during the construction around Logan Airport, there was a sign that said 'Construction means never having to say you're sorry' – kind of a play on 'Love Story.'"

Travelers411 Community Forums - This interview's thread:
http://www.travelers411.com/forums/showthread.php?t=3396

For more information visit www.travelers411.com


Link to this segment

Bill Miller, Senior Vice President of Strategic Partnerships, Cheapoair.com, Cheapostay.com
www.cheapoair.com

Travel Expert Stephanie Abrams and the "Travelers411" Radio Show fly away with Bill Miller, Senior Vice President of Strategic Partnerships for CheapOAir and CheapOStay. Bill has airfares and hotel deals on domestic travel during summer 2011. The airfares quoted are for a departure on July 12, 2011, and return on July 19, 2011. All taxes and fees are included.

Beachside chaise lounges and umbrella's at Barbados' all-inclusive Almond Resorts.
Beachside chaise lounges and umbrella's at Barbados' all-inclusive Almond Resorts.

The fares are New York to Chicago, $272; Los Angeles to Atlanta, $333; Los Angeles to Minneapolis, $342; Los Angeles to Boston, $396; Boston to San Diego, $368; San Francisco to New York, $418; and Los Angeles to Bangkok, $1381. "That's a long-haul flight, plus it includes all the taxes and fees, which can be higher for international trips," says Bill. "It's a busier summer this year in terms of airline seats being full, but there are still some deals out there."

Charlotte North Carolina.
Charlotte North Carolina.

The hotel rates are: $158 per night at the 4-star Intercontinental in Chicago; $174 per night at the Boston Crowne Plaza; and $189 per night for the 3-star Sheraton in New York City. "These are some beautiful hotels, and it's a great time of year to be in cities like Boston," Bill adds. "There are still some good fares and hotel rates."

Travelers411 Community Forums - This interview's thread:
http://www.travelers411.com/forums/showthread.php?t=5844

For more information visit www.cheapoair.com


Travel Tips:

When driving a rental car through Switzerland, travelers should check that the vehicle has a special sticker. "The car needs to have a paid-in-advance sticker that basically allows you to use Switzerland's fancy roads," says Stephanie. "Don't ignore it – you risk getting picked up by a friendly police officer and having to pay a gajillion dollars in fines."

Stephanie just stayed at the Cooper Square Hotel in New York City and was impressed both by the neighborhood and the view. "I would never have thought about staying in that area, but there are great restaurants, a wonderful movie theater, and the hotel is adorable," she says. "The best part is when you lie in bed – the room feels enormous because there are floor-to-ceiling windows. When you look straight out from your wonderfully soft pillowtop mattress, you feel like you're lying on a cloud, with an absolutely spectacular view of the bridges and buildings."


Fun Facts:

Nathaniel Hawthorne's home in Pittsfield, Massachusetts, is less than a mile from the home of fellow writer Herman Melville.

Hawthorne's portrait also hangs in the Omni Parker House in Boston – the same hotel where Charles Dickens lived for 2 years. It's the hotel where the author held the first dramatic reading of Dickens' "A Christmas Carol," where Parker House rolls and Boston cream pie were invented, and where both Malcolm X and Ho Chi Minh once worked (the latter as a pastry chef while he studied at MIT).


Guests Include:

Ray, Travelers411 Radio Show Prize Winner.
www.travelers411.com

Pat, Travelers411 Radio Show Prize Winner.
www.travelers411.com

Bill Miller, Senior Vice President of Strategic Partnerships, Cheapoair.com, Cheapostay.com
www.cheapoair.com

Travel Info on Air Quick Links Travelers411 Featured Links Travelers411 Featured Content
Travelers411 Mini Sites
Featured Content

Visit the Travelers411 Directory for
Distinguished Hotels

Click here to visit the Travelers411 Directory for Distinguished Hotels

Planning a trip?

Consider staying at one of the Distinguished Hotels locations in Canada, UK, Ireland, Italy, or Spain with new locations on the way.

Travelers411 - Travel PR Sidebar Widget

Travel PR from
UK National Trust

UK National Trust

Travel PR From: UK National Trust. Click here to listen now.

Stephanie Abrams (narrator) here, inviting you to Northern Ireland's North Coast where landscapes and seascapes inspire filmmakers. Walk in the mythical footsteps of Giant Fin McCool at Giant's Causeway. Trek across Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge. Enjoy miles of sugary sand at Portstewart Beach and have a bite at Harry's Shack with its million dollar panoramic beach view.

Travel Deal for
Glasson Country House Hotel & Golf Resort

Sunday to Thursday-special midweek offer €159pps

Click here for details

sabrams.com Quick Links
Click here to visit the Travelers411 Directory for US Department of State, Department of Consular Affairs

There are over 8000 locations where you can apply for a US passport. Your US passport is the key for international travel and proof of citizenship while traveling. Standard and expedited passport applications are available.

The Travelers411 Family of Brands:   Travelers411.com     sAbrams.com     Travelingfeet.com     Jetset411.com

© 2016 Travelers411. All Rights Reserved. Travelers411 and Persistent Visions are Registered Trademarks. "Your Travel Community" TM. "Explore Your World" TM. Travelers411 and all subpages and sub domains are protected by US Copyright law. We also strive to respect the copyrights of others. Please do not post material to this site for which you do not have proper permission from the copyright holder. To request use or report abuse please contact us.

| Sponsored Link |
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.  U.S. Department of Commerce.  Get up to date information on weather, climate, oceans and coasts, fisheries.  Click here to visit www.noaa.gov