April 22, 2010

europe or bust

The tickets have been bought and the contracts sent in.
We're going to Europe this summer, kiddos.

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Image and video hosting by TinyPic
Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Tec has a couple jobs in Nice, France so we're making the most of our time there and exploring the heavy-hitters of Europe we've never been before: Rome, London and Paris. But having never been to any of those places, we're at a complete loss as to where to stay... and the other fun stuff like where to eat and shop and see.

Do you have suggestions? Help a sister and a brother out.

Pics found here, here and here.


ktlee said...

Jealous! I definitely recommend staying in the Trastaverre neighborhood in Rome. We stayed at the Maria Rosa Guesthouse. It's a quaint little apartment run by Sylvie Ruzzin. She has two rooms she rents out to guests. It was very comfortable and affordable.


Celeste said...

as of a few days ago, i've officially been to all of those places! in rome, go to the trevi fountain at night. it's magical. in paris, my favorite museum is the "orangerie"- it's FILLED with monet's water lilies and they're breath-taking. i'm not sure what your price range is for accomodation, but the nh hotels in rome are pretty nice and i'm assuming so across the rest of europe. have a wonderful trip!

Melissa said...

www.parisvacationapartments.com for while you're in Paris. The people you'll work with to secure your contract are the nicest human beings on the planet and they have a range of apartments for a range of prices in a range of areas. Love it, love it, LOVE IT! Have a WONDERFUL time. :)

atout said...

Oh I am jealous! I spent a month in Paris when I was 21 and although I did all the big touristy things, there are so many things I missed (21 year olds don't plan so well)! Jordan has a great guide posted on her site (http://jordanferney.blogspot.com/p/paris-guide.html) that tells you all kinds of wonderful things.

My big suggestion would be to not stress about the touristy things. Figure out the big hitters you'd like to see and then spend the rest of the time experiencing the city. Sit, people watch, drink, eat and soak all the lovely in.

Also, the closer to the tourist site, the crappier the food...Rome is really good at that.

Yumi @ Natsukashii said...

Hello Chelsea - Your blog is lovely! Those cities are amazing!! These are just resources but pastry chef David Lebovitz is living "The Sweet Life in Paris" right now and always has great suggestions about restaurants, shopping and traveling tips on his blog at great length. www.davidlebovitz.com. Also Joanna from A Cup of Jo had posted about this site some time back: www.haveninparis.com. Beautiful flats to rent. :)Have a wonderful trip!

abby said...

if you have the time, make the extra effort to get out to florence. most romantic and incredible city!

Ahn said...

a year ago today (just blogged about it) my husband and i left on a 6 week trip to europe...so wonderful. you will learn so much about each other!

Nicole said...

Paris: My husband and I found a cool hotel a couple years ago called Hotel Bourg Tibourg. It's a boutique hotel with small rooms, quite elegant and fun. http://www.bourgtibourg.com/index2.php?langue=anglais

I preferred Musee d'Orsay over the Louvre, but a Paris trip wouldn't be complete without seeing both.

In general, I definitely recommend the "vacation rental by owner" route, especially if you're staying in the various cities for weeks at a time.

Have fun!

kendra said...

I am an occasional reader of your blog and love everything you do. I'm currently in Paris as I am typing this, and just got back to the hotel from dinner at Le Cooperative I believe it is called. It is on Rue De Rivoli, which is a major street here. I've been to this restaurant on this trip a few times already because I enjoy it so much. If you go, you absolutely must get a banana split. Best chocolate, vanilla, and strawberry ice cream in the world. There is also an ice cream parlor Berthillon. The address is 29-31 Rue Saint Louis en L'ile, 75004 Paris France. Paris is known for this ice cream shop. And it isn't far from Norte Dame. As for a place to stay... I am currently staying at the Citadels Apart Hotel, which is an apartment hotel, so the room has a mini kitchen which came in very handy. But this place isn't very cute and french. It looks like a hotel room in America. I would recommend renting an apartment. I'm sure you already know you should go to the Eiffel Tower at night, but it twinkles with lights every hour on the hour, so make sure your'e there on an hour! If you go to the Arc De Triomphe, definitely go to the top. It is an obnoxious spiral staircase with something like 245 steps, but the view is completely worth it. I dont know how old you are, but 18-25 year olds are considered "youths" here and a lot of the museums and tourist places offer discounts for youths, you just have to show your passport.

A lot of things here are closed on Sundays due to the catholic church, just for a tip. And a lot of places do not open until 11 or 11:30 on a daily basis, so I ended to start my days late and end them late, rather than the other way around.

Me said...

Oh how wonderful to have this opportunity to go to Europe! I went to Italy with my husband 8 years ago. I loved Rome! The architecture was amazing!! I hope you have fun.

HMHudson said...

I really have no advice to offer as I've never been myself. My husband has been a few times to each of those places. He spent two weeks in Rome a couple years ago with a native and he enjoyed living like the Romans do! Gelato everyday! My only advice would be...keep an eye on your purse in Rome!

{lilac wishes & honeysuckle riches} said...

Rome is amazing!! By far my favorite! Hotel Aberdeen is where we stayed, a small family run place that is just fabulous, and in a great location! Climbing St Peters Basilica is a must for amazing photos as well as San Gimignana and Siena. If I could suggest one thing it would be to do a bike/wine tour! By far, the most amazing experience I have probably ever had. I booked mine through Tuscany Bike Tours and they were amazing! Enjoy…eat lots of Margherita Pizza, house wine and Tiramisu! (And don’t gain 8 pounds like I did, lol)

Lizzie said...

Oh Paris, how I love you.

After 6 months studying in Paris (which ended yesterday, sigh) here are some pointers.

Some top hotel tips:

I spent my honeymoon at the Bourg Tibourg last July (mentioned in another comment). It is well designed with dark, dramatic gothic decor, but the rooms were TINY, even by Paris standards. Not much bigger than a double bed, and with hanging space beside the loo....and in the summer, you really want something a bit more airy. If you go there ask for a roon on the top floor.

I recently stayed at the Hotel Amour in the 9th district (Rue de Navarin). It's very rock and roll and sexy (hence name!), wonderfully decorated with 60s and 70s furniture relics. Very convenient for getting around too. We stayed in room 101 which had a huge private terrace outdoors. The duplex rooms are fun too (but smelt a bit of smoke).

For our last night in Paris (i.e. 2 nights ago...sigh!), we stayed at the TimHotel Montmartre. Now, I must say upfront that this is no design hotel. The rooms are dismayingly standard (except the suite on the 5th floor which has been refurbed nicely). However, the reason to stay is because if you are on the 4th or 5th floors, you have a panoramic view of the whole of Paris, La Defense, Eiffel Tower, etc etc all the way from East to West. Sitting up there in the evening watching the lights on the Eiffel Tower was MAGICAL. Room 417 has views of Paris one side and a view of Sacre Coeur from the other. And because the decor aint all that, it's cheaper than most Paris rooms. Even if you just stay one night there, it's worth it. But ssshhhhh, don't let everyone know about the secret!

Also check out www.specialplacestostay.com for good B&Bs all over France.

In Paris, eat at Chez L'Ami Jean in the 7th, have falafel on Rue de Rosiers, gelato from Pozetto in the Marais, ride the free bicycles around with the wind in your hair, picnic in the Place des Voges....endless possibilities.

ben harrison said...

you have to go to Cinque Terre in Italy ... only a couple hour train ride from Rome ... end your trip there and spend a few days (or a few years) ... its our favorite place on earth ... http://www.cinqueterreonline.com/
... and if you can, stay in vernazza ... just do a search for cinque terre in google image search and you will see why you MUST go there :)

angelicalovesdustin said...

Hey Chelsea!
Dustin and I had our honeymoon in London and are so excited that you guys get to go! We stayed at a Corus hotel accross from Hyde Park (so beautiful)...it was pretty reasonable. I do suggest going through Samsclub.com...they have a travel agency that was amazing and helped us through passport issues.
I would recommend getting a week long pass for using the tube (depending how long you are there)..during the summer the Queen leaves Buckingham Palace so we were able to tour the Palace and view all of her gowns and jewels through the years...I highly recommend it--definently worth it. St. James Park & Hyde Park are lovely, Swan Lake, British Museum, Covent Garden was one of our favorite little streets. Of course Top Shop and the H&M out there are fun to shop.
Wagamama is an asian resturant (3 locations around London) which is really good and there is also Pret-a-Manger (sandwich/salad shop). Definently get some fish & chips from a pub (We liked The Swan which was right next door to our hotel). Don't forget to ask for ice in your cups! We did use a guide that we 'studied' before our trip so we were prepared where we should eat at. It is tricky because the food in London isn't spectacular by any means but you can certainly eat well. Oh there also is a Haagen Dazs ice cream cafe (RESTURANT!) in Trafalgar Square. Cafe Pacifico in Covent Garden or La Perla are Mexican Resturants that were really good (we actually saw Emma Watson there). Please take lots of pictures! I want every detail of your trip! -Angelica

Cristina said...

So exciting! Rome is wonderful but Paris is unforgettable! I just got back from my honeymoon there and I have posted a lot of tips about going there on my blog... Tips that I didn't find despite all my research prior to going. Rick Steve's website is actually pretty helpful. He suggests places to stay (which are very authentic, small & homey but they book very fast). His best piece of advice was going to Rue Cler. Awesome restaurants and if you are lucky - amazing outdoor antique shops! Cars are not allowed on the street so the atmosphere is incredible.

I just recently found your blog through design sponge and I am in love :)

Have fun! ohmyohme.com

Anonymous said...

I recommend this cheese fondu restaurant in Paris!
You will suck wine from baby bottle! I think its very original.
Also, there's this very cute shop for light, you can customize colors you like, its worth a visit.

Bon voyage!