For women business travelers, it's often a "party of one" - so why not make the best of it? Full and busy day with clients, then off to an enjoyable dinner - a mid-week date night with yourself. Firebox Restaurant in Hartford was the perfect fit. Located south of downtown in Frog Hollow, in the Billings Forge Community Works founded by the Melville Charitable Trust to revitalize the neighborhood, Firebox is an unlikely location for a high-end dining experience. And if you're not a local, you may not think to venture into an urban renewal zone to do just that....
When you're a business womantraveler on the road with a transition day between meetings, what do you do? Fly back home and start out again before dawn the next morning? Or, take a more creative path - find the nearest lap of luxury and spoil yourself for a day? I chose the Ballantyne Hotel and Lodge in Charlotte, N.C. It's tempting to take the easy path - stay on the plane and stick to the routine. Putting together the alternative, the "take care of yourself" option, requires more research, creativity and budget.
As a womantraveler now working from the West Coast, I'm always in search of a convenient East Coast rendezvous to catch up with longtime friends. Surprisingly, Philadelphia has moved far up the list.
Despite frequent trips to Paris, I had always taken the Eiffel Tower for granted. Both awesome and flamboyant, it's always in the distant background in the City of Light. But during this trip the Eiffel Tower was a friendly a good neighbor just a few blocks away -- always in sight out the window, glowing warmly at night and shimmering each hour on the hour after dark with stunning drama and poise. The 7th Arrondissement along and around Rue Saint-Dominique was a perfect home base for a week with the girlfriends, an upscale but not pretentious neighborhood, where one of the girlfriends found a well-appointed apartment, fittingly, from Paris Perfect.
When three lifelong girlfriends rendezvous in Paris, the energy is so high that you just have to get out and shop. Always start with the eye candy that is totally out of sight -- along Avenue Montaigne where wealth and chic prevail in the windows of Versace, Dior, Lacroix and more.
Terrance Gelenter is a passionate marketer with a generous spirit, who has turned his love affair with Paris into an experience accessible to everyone through his website, speakers programs and travel planning business, Paris Through Expatriate Eyes. Most recently I ran into Terrance in Mill Valley, California, where he was signing his new book, From Bagels to Brioches: Paris Par Hasard, a semi-memoir, semi-travelogue tale of how and why he made Paris his own.
Eat, pray, love your hearts out, Julia and Elizabeth. Undistracted by men -- though we love them -- the girlfriends are off to Paris for a week. As the wise yogi once told me (actually I think she was a buyer in the Eileen Fisher department at Macy's), a good scarf, purposeful flair and proper enthusiasm for food and wine are what it takes to have des vacances incroyable in the City of Light with the gals. Expect the unexpected! That is the theme for the Womantraveler.
For San Francisco dining, add these to your palate/palette of the best but exceptional and affordable San Francisco dining. Let's face it, the embarrassment of riches in San Francisco makes it easy to settle for less. Here are some of our recent top pix where from an insider's view you'll do far better than the ordinary.
Carmel, California, is not what it used to be -- but it is still Carmel (or its proper name, Carmel-by-the-Sea). After all, Clint Eastwood was mayor for a while and he is nothing if Mr. Integrity. Just because I knew it one way (back when) doesn't mean that you can't make it your own now.
Pleasanton, California, is perfectly named and its Rose Hotel is a womantraveler's blend of luxury, ease and convenience.