Travel Expert and Radio Talk Show Host Stephanie Abrams - Traveling Feet Shownotes
Traveling Feet - November 15, 2008 - Shownotes & Audio Archive

The Distinguished Hotels Collection; The Cranley Hotel, London; Blue Bay Resorts Punta Serena Villas and Spa; Mallika Chopra Founder of; The Treasures of Ireland; Lough Erne Golf Resort, the Gateway to Northwest Ireland.

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Hour 1

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Distinguished Hotels is a collection of unique properties handpicked by President and CEO, Bill Burruss. Burruss was formerly the President of the Grand Heritage Hotel Group which owns and markets premiere properties across North America and the Caribbean. With Distinguished Hotels, Burruss aspires to bring to the public distinct properties that give a sense of place and provide memorable experiences that one cannot duplicate.

Distinguished Hotels is currently selecting four to five new properties a month. One of its newest properties is the Cranley Hotel, located at the border of Kensington and Chelsea in the residential London neighborhood of Bina Garden. The hotel is situated on a quiet, tree-lined street that is close to the central sites of London. There are two tube stops within two minutes walking distance of the hotel. Also in walking distance are Kensington Garden, Buckingham Palace, the Royal Albert Hall and the Victoria and Albert Museum. The area is great for specialized boutique-shopping with a lot of porcelain and antiques available in the Chelsea area.

The Cranley Hotel is a converted Victorian townhouse with 38 individualized rooms which represent a true London experience.  There are 12 double rooms, 14 executive doubles that can be twinned to accommodate families or large groups, and ten four poster rooms which feature handmade beds.

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British Air is currently offering roundtrip airfare available from the East Coast of the US to London, England for under $200 USD. Tax is not included in the quoted cost.

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Blue Bay's Los Angeles Locos Resort, located in Manzanilla, Mexico, has a total of 228 rooms, 24 of which are located at adjacent resort property, Punta Serena Villas and Spa. The Punta Serena is an adults-only resort situated on a hill at an even more remote location than the main resort. It has a separate beach section where clothing is optional. Guests have access to all the facilities of the larger hotel area but are given the opportunity for a greater degree of tranquility. Punta Serena promotes wellness and relaxation with yoga classes, a sun lounge, open air massage area and a spa on site.

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Fun Facts:

“Homely” in British English means simple in a way that makes you feel comfortable such as a friendly hotel whereas in US english it typically means "lacking in physical attractiveness".

Guests Include:

Bill Burrus, President & CEO, Distinguished Hotels.

John Alexander, General Manager, The Cranley Hotel, London, England, member of Distinguished Hotels.

Zindy Cienfuegos, General Manager, BlueBay's Punta Serena Resort, Mexico.

Hour 2

Topics Include:

The Treasures of Ireland Trip in March, 2009 includes itinerary personally designed by Travel Expert Stephanie Abrams. 23 nights are divided into 5 and 7 night modules so that travelers can select appropriate dates and length of stay. The trip includes visits to abbeys, castles, historic locations with stops along the way for shopping and golf.

Packages start at $1299 USD per person and include breakfast, an automatic four door car, stays at 4 and 5 star manors and all services and taxes. There is roundtrip airfare from JFK to Dublin available from Air France for under $400 USD including tax. Discount rates are subject to dates and availability and end March 31, 2009.

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Mallika Chopra, daughter of Deepak Chopra, founded with a mission to bring people together throughout the world and to promote personal, social and global wellness. Her father is a leading figure of mind-body medicine and is the co-founder of the Chopra Center for Wellbeing which opened in Carlsbad, California in 1996. Like her father, Mallika focuses on integrative medicine and the power of spiritual healing. She sees travel as a new area to focus on as it can be truly inspirational and help to foster personal growth. Part of the journey of self discovery is discovering the world.

Stephanie asks Mallika about her opinion on the relationship of the otherworldly architecture of Antonio Gaudi in Barcelona and the spiral structures found in Thailand. Thai Buddhist architects developed their own distinct style that bares some similarity to choices that Gaudi made with spires and multi-tiered rooftops. There is arguably a Buddhist aesthetic to Gaudi's work. Gaudi was a devout Catholic and committed the last years of his life to working exclusively on the La Sagrada Familia, an unfinished Cathedral that he worked on for over 40 years.

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Noel McMeel, the Executive Chef at the Lough Erne Golf Resort, worked as Executive Chef at Castle Leslie when Paul McCarthy was married there. Stephanie says that his excellent cuisine is just one reason to appreciate the Lough Erne Golf Resort. The property represents a gateway to Northwest Ireland and is set on 600 acres of peninsula with lakelands on both sides. There are a total of 120 guest rooms, 59 of which are in the hotel sections. The remaining guest quarters are two and three bedroom lodges that Stephanie says look like Don Quixote windmills. The lodge rooms are luxuriously furnished in the same style as the hotel rooms but are ideal for families, parties of golfers, spa visitors, and anyone requiring extra space. They allow for additional seclusion but with complete access to the amenities of the resort. The Lough Erne golf course has 14 holes that have water in view.

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Stephanie will be speaking at the Gala Dinner at the Clare Tourism Conference on November, 28, 2008.

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Guests Include:

Mallika Chopra, Founder of Intent.Com, Daughter of Depak Chopra.

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Johanthan Stapleton, General Manager, Lough Erne Golf Resort, Enniskillen, Northern Ireland.

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