If you have 2 weeks, I have an adventure!

Posted in Uncategorized on October 22, 2013 by cheriforzani

A few weeks ago I received a call from a client looking to go to Thailand at the end of the month, so within a few days, I gave her a custom itinerary for Thailand and Cambodia, at a surprisingly affordable price. All she has to do is pack! For more information or pricing on your own custom itinerary, give me a call or email here.

October 21, 2013 Arrive Bangkok, Thailand
Tonight, you will arrive in Bangkok via Asiana Airlines OZ-741 at 10:05p.m. Upon your arrival in exotic Bangkok, Thailand, you will be met by our representative and transferred to the Metropolitan Hotel for a three night stay.

October 22, 2013 Canals with Grand Palace (B)
A leisurely departure will take you for a cruise along the Chao Phraya River by long-tail speedboat for a glimpse of traditional Thai lifestyles. As we ply through the klongs, we will make our way to Wat Arun, the Temple of Dawn. We then proceed across the river to the famed Grand Palace, where the holiest Buddha image, the Emerald Buddha, is enshrined. Explore this colorful complex in detail before returning to your hotel for an afternoon at leisure.
palace
October 23, 2013 City and Temples (B)
This morning, visit Bangkok’s colorful Flower Market (Pak Klong Talad), the biggest wholesale and retail fresh flower market in Bangkok. The market has all kinds of popular flowers and flora-related items, including roses, forget me nots, orchids, lilies and more. Most of them sold in packs of 50 or 100 flowers in each, and prices are amazingly cheap. Part of the Old City, Bangkok Flower market is located on Chak Phet Road near Saphan Phut or the Memorial Bridge. Shops and vendors are housed inside two to three-storey shop-houses on both sides of the main road.

Continue to some of Bangkok’s other revered temples, including Wat Bejamaborpitr, the Marble Temple; Wat Po, the reclining Buddha Temple, and Wat Trimitr, the home of the largest Golden Buddha. Continue to the Vimarnmek Teak Palace, the largest teak structure in the world, now a museum, containing a wonderful collection of Asian and European artifacts, before returning to your hotel.

October 24, 2013 Fly Bangkok, Thailand to Siem Reap, Cambodia (B)
This morning, you will be met and transferred to the airport for your short flight to Siem Reap, Cambodia. Fly Bangkok Airways PG-905 Bangkok/Siem Reap 10:35a.m./11:45a.m. Upon your arrival in Siem Reap, Cambodia you will be met by our representative and transferred to the Shinta Mani for a three-night stay. After check-in, you will visit the magnificent city of Angkor. Unequivocally, one of the wonders of the ancient world, the temples of Angkor cover a vast area of over 25 square miles, considered to have once been the largest city in the world. You will explore this great complex in detail. (Pool View)
shinta

October 25, 2013 Siem Reap (B)
After a sunrise visit to Angkor Wat, other ruins in the City of Angkor include the mysterious Bayon located in the center of Angkor Thom, whose 216 smiling faces carved on the 54 towers that rise majestically from the jungle floor make for an out of this world experience! Further explorations will take us to the monuments of the Baphuon (a replica of Mt. Meru), the Terrace of the Elephants and Phimean Akas. This afternoon visit Srah Srang, Bantey Kdei, Ta Keo, Chau Say Tevoda, Thammanon and the legendary jungle Wat Ta Prohm, embraced by the roots of enormous fig trees. Return to the hotel in the early evening.
temple

October 26, 2013 Siem Reap (B)
After breakfast travel to the exquisite Banteay Srei and Banteay Samre Temples. The afternoon is at leisure.

October 27, 2013 Fly Siem Reap, Cambodia – Chiang Mai, Thailand (via Bangkok) (B)
After breakfast, you will be transferred to the airport for your flight to Chiang Mai in Thailand’s northern hills. Fly Bangkok Airways PG-924 Siem Reap/Bangkok 9:50a.m./10:45a.m. connecting with PG-217 Bangkok/Chiang Mai 12:10p.m./1:25p.m. Upon arrival, you will be met by our representative and transferred to the Dusit D2 for three nights. This afternoon, visit the most interesting temples in Chiang Mai such as Wat Phra Singh with its Famous Buddha image, Wat Chedi Luang, Wat Chiang Man, the oldest temple in Chiang Mai built by King Mangrai, Wat Suan Dok which houses the remains of many generations of the old Chiang Mai Royal Family and Wat Jet Yot. Continue to Doi Suthep, a mountain temple on the outskirts of town. Ring the bells for good luck. Return to your hotel.
wat

October 28, 2013 Handicraft Villages (B)
Today you will visit several villages where you will see silk and cotton weaving in Sankampaeng District and observe all levels of textile production. Continue to the umbrella making village of Bor-Sarng, where you will watch craftspeople creating the colorful parasols for which Chiang Mai is best known. Also visit a teakwood furniture carving factory and a silverware workshop before returning to your hotel for an afternoon at leisure. Tonight, a visit to the Chiang Mai night bazaar is a must. (B)

October 29, 2013 Elephants and Orchids (B)
Today travel north to the Mae Sa Valley stopping at an elephant camp to how these mighty beasts live and work in the forest. Continue to an orchid farm to observe how the world famous Thai orchids are cultivated. Return to your hotel for an afternoon at leisure.

October 30, 2013 Fly Chiang Mai to Phuket (B)
This morning, you will be transferred to the airport for your flight to Phuket, an island off of Thailand’s Southwest coast. Fly Thai Airways TG-2111 Chiang Mai/Phuket 8:45a.m./10:40a.m. Upon arrival, you will be met by our representative and be transferred to the Avista Resort and Spa for a three night stay. (Club Room)

October 31, 2013 Phang Nga Bay by Speedboat (B, L)
The perfect way to discover all of the many attractions of Phang Nga Bay is by speedboat. Visit the world famous “James Bond Island”, where Hollywood filmed parts of the movie “The Man with the Golden Gun”. Enjoy sightseeing and if you choose, travel by canoe to explore hidden caves and lagoons. Enjoy a traditional Thai lunch at “Panyi Village” a village built on stilts in the sea. Take the opportunity to swim in some picturesque coves.
phang nga

November 1, 2013 Phuket (B)
Today is at your leisure.

November 2, 2013 Fly Phuket to Bangkok (B)
After a day at leisure, you will be met and transferred to the airport for your flight to Bangkok. Fly Thai Airways TG-216 Phuket/Bangkok 4:50p.m./6:15p.m. Upon arrival, self-transfer to your departing Asiana Airlines flight OZ-742 at 11:40p.m.

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How about a real Christmas Adventure?

Posted in South America, Uncategorized on September 8, 2013 by cheriforzani

Have a look at the itinerary planned for my clients, a family of four with 2 teenaged boys over Christmas break:

Excursion to Perito Moreno Glacier with mini trekking in Perito Moreno Glacier located inside Los Glaciares National ParkFrom the very beginning this trip will provide pleasant surprises.
glacier
Departing from El Calafate, Lago Argentino will appear on the right hand side of the road with its Bahía Redonda that shows an interesting number and diversity of bird species. The first part of the road goes along the typical Patagonian steppe, whose characteristic species are the broom sedges (hard, thorny type of grass) and ‘calafates’ (bushes belonging to the burberry family which is well-known for its yellow flowers and violet fruits).
From the National Park entrance onwards, the landscape changes dramatically, the flora grows richer with species that are typical of the Andean-Patagonian Forest. Perito Moreno Glacier is an imposing ice river covering an area of 195 square meters, 30 Km long and a front which is 5 km wide; the front walls are between 30 and 60 meters high over the lake level. In the central area of the glacier, the ice reaches a depth of 250 to 350 meters.
This frozen river descends from the Southern Patagonian Ice Field causing, during its slow advance, ice cracks and thunderous bursts. A show that is impressive not only for its beauty, but also for the continuous roars that are heard from its innermost recesses.
Because of its breathtaking beauty it was declared a Mankind Heritage by UNESCO. A walk along the paths placed in front of its Western wall, allows you to admire this impressive wonder of nature from different viewpoints. Navigation to start of mini-trek also allows a different perspective of Perito Moreno. Entrance fee to Los Glacieres National Park also included.

Full-Day MarPatag Gourmet Experience Navigation. With the “Glaciers Gourmet Experience“, you will navigate through Lago Argentino in the search for the “Spirit of Glaciers”. Walls of more than 50 meters (164 feet) high, deep blue millenary ice and stunning icebergs are the perfect setting for enjoying nature at its glory. You will be transferred from the hotels in El Calafate to Paraje Punta Bandera. Boarding at 8:00/8:30 AM. at the company’s own dock “La Soledad”. The navigation starts towards the northwest, crossing Punta Avellaneda and Boca del Diablo, the narrowest passage in the lake with almost 800 meters. After two hours of navigation, the series of ice floes, of the most varied colors and shapes, anticipates the proximity of Upsala glacier. If the weather conditions are good, we will observe the Upsala glacier at the distance. We continue navigating Lago Argentino towards the South, taking the Canal Spegazzini in order to reach the glacier that bears the same name. The navigation allows us to get closer to the glacier, which has front walls between 80 and 135 meters (262 – 443 feet) above lake level. Lunch is served amidst this stunning landscape. Towards the afternoon, the Crucero Leal will arrive at Puesto de Las Vacas (an extremely quiet bay in the Canal Spegazzini), where its engines will be stopped to let passengers share an amusing walk coordinated by team of guides. In this stop, it is possible to see stunning panoramic views.

Transfer to Alvear Art Hotel in Buenos Aires.
ba
Buenos Aires, city of tango, passionate for football (soccer), is a city of contrasts: architectural beauties, as the famous Colon Theater, palaces of a clear French and Italian influence, and buildings from colonial times live together with modern skyscrapers in perfect harmony. Buenos Aires is, with no doubt, the most European of the Latin American cities.

The Pampas, with a full-day visit to San Antonio de Areco. Today you will enjoy the most complete and original experience in the Pampas.
san antonio

The trip starts in a 280 years old small town called San Antonio de Areco: with its colonial protected architecture, people with garments, uses and customs of the original Argentinean traditions.
Declared officially “Cradle of Gaucho Traditions”, and “Historical Town”, with its cobbled streets, old bars with underground galleries, horse-drawn carriages and more than 60 silversmiths, artisans and artists, San Antonio de Areco offers a unique atmosphere. “Nestled in lush farmlands, San Antonio de Areco is probably the prettiest town in the pampas.…” (Lonely Planet Guide).

Morning panoramic city tour. Your excursion includes Palermo Park, La Recoleta, a stop at Evita Peron’s Tomb & La Boca (Caminito St.). You will also visit Plaza de Mayo, the grand boulevard of Buenos Aires with its many remarkable buildings and architecture, including the Cabildo (the Town Hall). Casa Rosada (the government’s headquarters and where once, Evita and then President Juan Domingo Peron famously gave speeches from its balcony).
Also see the Cathedral, a fantastic work of religious architecture, and the last resting place of Argentina’s independence hero, General San Martin.

Tonight: Tango!
It is the music of Buenos Aires par excellence. Despite its humble origins, in the 20’s tango left the brothels and the underworld districts to reach the high-class ballrooms, but to do so it had had to travel to Paris to return triumphant. Tango has become at last a complete cultural expression, a plot of myths, values and traditions. A good way to feel its spirit is by visiting one of the restaurants that offer tango shows. Dinner & show is at Esquina Carlos Gardel, the most famous Tango singer.

Transfer to B.A.’s convenient downtown airport, Aeroparque Jorge Newbery, for Puerto Iguazu. Upon arrival there you will be driven to Hotel Sheraton Internacional, the only hotel located inside Parque Nacional Iguazu.

Sheraton & Devil’s Throat: Trail to Park from hotel:
Today you have a tour of the Iguazú from the Argentine side, where you can take a series of catwalks over the water rushing into Devil’s Gorge. The Argentinean side really provides an intimate touch with the falls. The National Park was created in 1934 with the purpose of preserving one the most beautiful natural wonders of the world! It was declared a World Heritage site in 1984 by UNESCO. The many walking trails were paved throughout the reserve, and a free train brings visitors from the gate to the falls themselves. Walking through the park makes it possible to enjoy the rich flora and the huge amount of beautiful birds, butterflies (over 500 types in the area) and other animals.

Visit Devil’s Throat: This catwalk takes visitors through the unique landscape of the islands and shores of the Iguazú River before arriving at the Devil’s Throat the most impressive waterfall of the Iguazú Falls.
The journey (2080 m round trip) passes by three spacious viewpoints from which one can observe the natural splendour offered by the Iguazú River and the surrounding flora and fauna
Iquazu

The journey culminates with one’s arrival at the monumental “devil’s throat”: a horseshoe-shaped waterfall 150 m wide and 80 m high, surrounded by dense clouds of vapour formed by the tremendous volume of water crashing at the bottom (these clouds give the landscape its characteristic appearance). The aerial acrobatics of the “vencejos”, birds characteristic to the Iguazú Falls, represent another unforgettable sight.
Ecological Train of the Jungle Designed exclusively for this park, bearing in mind special considerations (e.g. climate, local vegetation). The train cars are open, allowing the visitor to have direct contact with the surrounding environment, and to experience riding through the middle of the jungle perceiving the aromas, weather, and the sounds of the forest. The train travels between 3 stations:
The “Central Station” is located at the Visitors Center, from which trains depart to the waterfalls; the second “Cataratas” station is situated meters from the start of the Inferior and Superior Circuits; the third “Garganta del Diablo” station is the final stop for trains. Use of the Ecological Train of the Jungle is included in the entrance fee to the Iguazú National Park.
Upper Circuit: This trail goes along the upper area of the falls, and guarantees spectacular panoramic views. There are six lookout points, where one can rest and appreciate the scenery. Lower Circuit: This trail elevated some 50 cm above ground has 8 observation points from which one can enjoy the various spectacular views. The unique design of this trail allows for close contact with the falls and surrounding vegetation, allowing one to become immersed in the natural surroundings without disrupting the free movement of animals. B.
If you are feeling adventurous you should consider the Great Adventure zodiac ride for a close-up & wet experience with the Falls.

Don’t hesitate – plan your holiday travel soon!

Posted in Just Booked, Mexico, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , on June 22, 2012 by cheriforzani

I can’t believe it’s June already! Yes, it’s been a long, long time since I’ve updated, but the last 6 months I’ve been insanely busy doing what I love most – planning travel.

Procrastinators, if you’re thinking of getting away for the holidays, you best get going as many villas and resorts are already fully booked. I’ll start posting recommendations forgreat Holiday getaways that I’ve planned for my clients and that still have availability:

Azul Fives in the Riviera Maya
azul

What do I love about Azul Fives?

1. Stylish and luxurious 1, 2 and 3 bedroom suites with complete kitchens, but since it’s all-inclusive, you don’t have to cook. These are perfect for groups and extended families.

2. Penthouse Suites with fabulous rooftop terraces complete with jacuzzi, BBQ, dining tables, sofas & lounge chairs that are perfect for a group celebratory dinner. Azul Fives will provide your own personal chef.

3. Azulito’s Kids club.

4. The food. In a word, fantastic at this Gourmet all-Inclusive with delicious fresh squeezed juices, smoothies and premium liquor.

5. Monkeys! I love watching the monkeys swinging from the trees outside your window, and so will the kids!

For more information call me at 203 216-1668 or email cheri@bookavacation.net

A Stylish New Renovation in Florence

Posted in Italy on November 23, 2011 by cheriforzani

Lobby
Lobby

Last week Zaira De Biasio stopped into our office to tell us about the re-opening of the 5 star luxury Hotel Villa Cora in Florence after an extensive and stunning 3 year renovation. The Hotel Villa Cora has so much to offer our clients, from the beautiful setting overlooking the Duomo and center of Florence, to the luxuriously appointed rooms and large garden with one of the most coveted amenities for summer travelers – a pool. The location is perfect for those who want to be close to the center of Florence yet also be able to escape the city in a relaxing and quiet villa.

After viewing these photographs, I’m sure you’ll understand why the Hotel Villa Cora just made Conde Nast Travelers “Hot List” for 2011.

Zaira has promised to take very good care of our clients so if you’d like to experience a stay at this hotel or one of the many other charming hotels we can recommend in Florence, please contact me at 203 216-1668.
Pool
wine bar
Library

Celebrity Exciting Deals One Day Sale

Posted in Cruises, Uncategorized on November 7, 2011 by cheriforzani

Celebrity Exciting Deals for Tuesday, November 29, 2011

These are one day sales based on double occupancy.

To book call 203 216-1668

The Celebrity Silhouette makes her North American debut

Posted in Cruises, photos on November 6, 2011 by cheriforzani

I’m just back from the Celebrity Silhouette’s pre-inaugural event and couldn’t wait to show you all some photos of this spectacular new cruise ship.

I’ll write more later, but in the meantime, take a look at some of these photos

Celebrity Silhouette

Stowe Mountain Lodge

Posted in Ski Vacations on October 19, 2011 by cheriforzani


I recently had the opportunity to stay at what I would consider to be the Northeast’s premier destination resort with my husband and dog, (yes, it’s luxurious and dog friendly, what more could I ask for?).  We were on our way to pick up our son from college for the summer and decided to make a detour to quaint, yet sophisticated, Stowe Vermont.

Stowe Mountain Lodge is a year-round New England spa resort that offers a variety of luxury lodging accommodations in Stowe, Vermont. If you want to find yourself surrounded in luxury, plan a vacation to Stowe’s newest resort and lodge.

Even though the addition of a new inter-mountain transfer gondola connecting Mt. Mansfield with Spruce Peak, new trails, a new beginner area, two new high-speed detachable quads and new fully-automated snowmaking on Spruce Peak has reinforced Stowe’s position as the East’s premier skiing and snowboarding resort, summer vacations at Stowe offer golfing, endless hiking, mountain biking and zip lines, perfect for the active family.

From the moment you enter the soaring, two-story lobby with its expansive glass views of Spruce Peak and Mount Mansfield and its massive stone-and-timber detailing, your senses will thank you.  With its evocative use of  natural stone, rich woods and metal detailing, the décor and  architecture brings the outdoor alpine aesthetic indoors. Every home is  a front door to the mountains … every interior, an open invitation to  reflect on the day’s adventure or daydream about the next.

The Lodge features a limited selection of  condominiums, ranging from luxury studios for personal getaways to  spacious three-bedroom residences.

Designed by architects and interior designers known globally for their  resort expertise, these fully-furnished condominiums feature a  high level of craftsmanship and detail. Each provides convenient access  to the exceptional facilities: including a world-class, Vermont Fresh restaurant Solstice; The Spa and Wellness Center at Stowe Mountain Lodge; a Bob  Cupp 18-hole wilderness golf course; and, of course, Stowe Mountain Resort.

The Spa at Stowe Mountain Lodge creates an unsurpassed experience in an environment designed for relaxation, renewal and rejuvenation.  Unfortunately I didn’t have time to experience any spa treatments but I hope to at a later date.  I did find time to go swimming in the enormous heated outdoor pool and hot tub…both were fantastic, and got a quick work out in the best equipped gym I’ve ever seen at a resort.

I am looking forward to returning with my kids (and Kona, she’s still missing her plush dog bed, Vermont made dog treats and handcrafted dog bowls),  in the winter so that we can experience the great skiing and boarding that’s just outside the lobby door.

For more information or to book, contact me at 203 216-1668 or email cheri@bookavacation.net