Key West Florida Vacation Rental: Your best Destination

Aptly named the sunshine state, Florida reigns as the most popular holiday destination for its long stretches of sandy beaches, larger-than-life theme parks and near perfect climate all year round. Fringed by 1,200 miles of sugary white beaches and lapped by clear blue seas, the Gulf Coast of Florida offers a unique blend of tropical sunshine, modern Miami culture and warm Southern hospitality. The best way to experience the true spirit of Florida is through a vacation rental home and A1 Florida Vacation Rentals is just the destination for choosing an ideal vacation rental.

A beachfront condo on the Gulf Coast offers enthusiastic beach lovers the perfect sand and sea holiday. Whether it is enjoying a round of golf in the cosmopolitan city of Naples; canoeing through the waterways of Sarasota; fishing at Fort Myers Beach or savoring delicious seafood in Tarpon Springs; Florida Vacation Rentals ensures you have a good time both indoors and outdoors with its exclusive vacation homes.

Shopping buffs can loosen their purse strings in the fashionable city of Miami. Literally a melting pot of cultures, Miami has something for everyone and a beachfront condo or an apartment from Florida Vacation Rentals provides the perfect outlet to this vibrant city.

A vacation in Florida would be absolutely incomplete without paying a visit to Mickey’s homeland, Orlando. Brimming with extravagant theme parks, shopping malls, late-night bars, restaurants and family catered entertainment; it’s no surprise why Orlando is called America’s theme capital. In this larger-than-life city, why confine yourself to a boring hotel room, instead opt for a spacious beachfront vacation home from Florida Vacation Rentals. Whatever region or activity you plan to choose in Florida, there’s only one choice for vacation rentals and that is Florida Vacation Rentals.…

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Athens Travel Guide for Beginners

The fascinating subject of history as well as among the most popular getaway options of the Europe, the Greek capital Athens is truly among the most fabulous cities in the continent, prominently known as the birthplace of western civilization. With its superlative range of UNESCO World Heritage sites and incredible variety of ancient ruins, Athens have been successful to derive thousands of tourists to its doorstep and gave everyone a spellbinding experience of discovering many told and untold stories about the Greek mythology and history. Recently encountered a huge crisis of economy, Athens has rapidly recovered from the loss and is again establishing itself as one of the most spectacular getaway destinations in the Europe. People who have been thinking to plan a visit to Athens shall consider the following travel guide for beginners planning Athens holidays:

1. Transportation

Despite being affected from the economic crisis, Athens has a wonderful transport system that is not only good in quality, but also pocket-friendly as well as efficient to cover almost every major and minor attraction in and around the city. The basic public transportation such as buses, trams, subways and trains are easy to get and have stops to the major access points of every city, district and town of Athens. People who enjoy riding taxis with their custom routes shall get ready to pay a good fortune as the prices of taxis are quite expensive as compared to the public transport. So, unless you don’t wish to put a dent in your savings, then you should probably consider using public transport, until you have to access the outskirts where there is a limit of public transport.

2. Prominent Attractions

Athens is like an ocean of information and everything available here has its concrete proof which can be accessed by visiting the most prominent landmarks including Acropolis of Athens, Parthenon, Syntagma Square, National Observatory of Athens, Hadrian’s Library, Tower of the Winds, Propylaea, Athena Parthenos, Jewish Museum of Greece, Temple of Athena Nike, Tzistarakis Mosque, Agios Eleftherios Church, Presidential Palace, National Museum of Contemporary Art, Museum of Greek Folk Musical Instruments, Church of the Holy Apostles and ample of other places that are really charming and connected with the heritage, culture, tradition, religion and lifestyle of Athens as well as the rest of the Greece.

3. Best Things to Do in Athens

As much as Athens is connected to its history, this Greek capital is boasted with a marvelous diversity of culture and traditions which have been the reason why most of the tours available in Athens remain majorly sold-out. The city has this amazing range of theaters and art galleries that offer not just massive amount of information to its visitors, but also is capable to entertain with an interactive and zealous way. The theaters and performing art centers across the Athens are the prominent reason why people often adore the culture and artistic diversity of Athens a lot and enjoy being a part of it by going through some …

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Changing Face of the New Hotel General Manager

In the olden days, the General Manager was the friendliest face you saw when checking into a hotel. The host supreme, he was entrusted with the task of interfacing with the guests and making them feel at home. He accommodated your wishes, catered to your demands, and made troubles vanish into thin air. A competent General Manager was worth his weight in gold, and made all the difference between a good and great stay at a hotel!

Today, however, the genial General Manager is fast transforming into a power tool that takes care of various responsibilities, sometimes simultaneously. Gone are the days when he would stand in deference in the hotel lobby. This Jack-of-all-trades now has his fingers deeply and firmly embedded in not one but many pies and is adept at juggling his many roles with a quiet exterior and charming panache.

So what exactly does the new age General Manager do?

The short answer to that is ‘Almost everything!’

It’s true. From tasting food and ensuring top-notch room service to assuming a leadership role and guiding the team towards the company’s goal, the General Manager’s responsibilities are varied in nature and not restricted to any one division of the hotel.

Here’s a more detailed description of what is expected of a General Manager. In addition to overseeing day-to-day options, he’s in charge of…

  1. Building a vibrant organization
  2. Creating a distinctive work environment
  3. Establishing priorities and setting the goals of the company
  4. Spearheading innovative and strategic thinking
  5. Managing human resources and mapping their productivity
  6. Driving the team towards success by setting a personal example
  7. Maintaining the highest standards across all operations

There’s no denying that a General Manager has a lot on his plate. Each responsibility has to be executed with perfection and mistakes are not tolerated kindly in the hospitality industry. Accustomed to fighting fires every day, the General Manager goes around troubleshooting a wide range of problems without batting an eyelid. Safe to say, this job is not everyone’s cup of tea.

What characteristics are desirable in a General Manager?

The General Manager is one of the most respectable, demanding, and exacting positions in the industry. Not everybody can do justice to this role. It takes a person with considerable ingenuity to step into those shoes. Here are some of the traits you should look for in a prospective General Manager.

The Ability to Multi-task

This one makes it to the top of my list for obvious reasons. The typical workday of a General Manager is extremely complex since they are required to oversee so many things and. With equal alertness and perspicacity, they have to supervise guest relations, housekeeping, front desk, finances, F&B set up, compliance, employee evaluation, and any events that may be happening in the hotel. Unless he has excellent time management skills and organizational talents, a General Manager will never be able to rise up to the occasion and keep things together.

Professional Troubleshooting

Most people who land up at a hotel for …

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Why Choose a Travel Consultant to Book a Vacation?

Well, it’s finally come! You are planning your vacation, one of your most important trips! Why not maximize your budget and time and choose a reputable consultant to help with the task. After all, your Travel Consultant does this as their full time job.

When selecting your Travel Consultant, be sure they have qualified references to handle your request. Working with a seasoned Destination Specialist, Certified Travel Consultant and/or Master Cruise Counselor are a benefit for you. These professionals know their destinations, work with reliable vendors and have the expertise and knowledge to handle land arrangements, cruise, tour and special needs for your stay.

If you are planning a special occasion, such as a honeymoon, anniversary or family reunion; it is important all details are in place, for a memorable stay. Having a professional look after those details lightens your load to: just having fun. Did I make the correct choice in our hotel/resort? Is it the best value? Is it during hurricane season? Or better yet, uh oh, I think I forgot to check the expiry date on our passports or secure a visa for our trip.

A Travel Consultant will typically set up a telephone appointment to speak with you about the details of your request. Taking note of your travel preferences, type of vacation, and experience that you are expecting. Discussing budget and travel dates are important, as availability and pricing is what determines the best value for your vacation dollars.

Once you have your destination, type of travel, dates, and budget set, that is when you will see the creativity and expertise of your Consultant shine! Customizing the trip to your liking and making your dream trip come true is their primary concern.

Typically, Travel Consultants charge a Research/Planning Fee when researching any trip. This usually goes towards the cost of your trip, or is an added fee for their research and design of your itinerary; depending on the length of your travels, and destinations.

Using a Travel Consultant to help with your vacation planning is not only a smart, travel savvy choice, but it will enhance your travel experience. You cannot VIP yourself at the hotel nor request an upgrade, based on the volume of business you have brought to the cruise line or resort. Your Travel Consultant can do this and more! Having the advantage of working with preferred vendors and hotels increases their purchasing power for you and it does not cost more to have this professional service. Instead, it usually saves you money!

We have heard the terrible stories of people booking on-line; only to save a few dollars and arrive at their destination and find it is not exactly the “great resort” they thought they were booking. Who is going to help you now? You thought you did an excellent job researching those “cheap international flights” only to find you did not allow enough time for your connecting flight…and you missed it! How much are you willing to pay for a …

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Where to Travel in Latin America

Latin America is an incredible place to travel to for so many reasons. First, there is the weather. If you have a case of the winter time blues as an American then this is a great place to take a trip to. Then there is the cuisine. Any foodie can get lost in Latin America. There are so many other great things about the region. Let’s go over some of the best places in Latin America to travel to.

First let’s start off with the United States’ neighbor to the south, Mexico. Many think Mexico gets a bad rap and is not a good place to travel to. Those people would be sadly mistaken. First off there are the amazing all-inclusive resorts in Riviera Maya. These are amazing to plan a romantic getaway to. The Mexicans take hospitality to the next level.

Then there is a good time to be had if you leave these resorts, just remember to be careful. If you stay in areas where there are mostly tourists around, this makes the chances for safety much more likely. There are excursions to go on where you can enjoy fun things like zip lining, repelling, snorkeling and caving. Normally you can book these trips from your resort and get lined up with reputable tour companies where you will be picked up from your resort.

Another great place in Latin America is Costa Rica. This is a great place to go vacation to for many of the same reasons. You will see a theme developing that people in Latin America take hospitality very seriously. On top of that, the food in Costa Rica is incredible. There is no way anyone will be let down when they enjoy Costa Rican cuisine. The people in Costa Rica are incredibly friendly and there is a certain vibe with the people here.

A less popular place in Latin America to travel to is Colombia. For many of the same reasons, this is a great place to visit. There is so much to experience in Colombia when it comes to sights to see in Colombia. Another thing to keep in mind when visiting Colombia is the coffee. There is nowhere in the world that has coffee as renowned as there is in Colombia.

These are just a few places to get started. Someone could take a trip or two a year to Latin America for their entire lives and they would never grow tired of going there. There is so much to see and so much to do.…

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Cheap Hotels in Boston Overview: Tips on Selecting a Hotel Near Fenway Park and Harvard Square

Boston is one of America’s oldest cities and offers the perfect blend of historic sites and modern architecture and entertainment. Some people even call it “America’s greatest walking city”, as tourists stroll about the streets and historic districts. No matter where you want to stay, there are plenty of cheap hotels in Boston to choose from.

Most people arrive by landing at General Edward Lawrence Logan (BOS) International Airport. You can either rent a car to get to your hotel or take MBTA metro trains. There is convenient public transportation throughout all of the city’s neighborhoods. Vacation packages are available if you want to combine airfare to Boston International and a stay at a nice hotel. You can always buy your plane ticket separately if you wish. Just do the math to figure out which option would be cheaper.

Many tourists like to stay in the Downtown Boston area for easy access to the must-see aquarium, Faneuil Hall Marketplace, City Hall, Orpheum Theater, etc. There are over 200 hotels, inns, and other accommodation to choose from in the downtown area. A few affordable options include Boston Park Plaza, Revere Hotel Boston Common, Harborside Inn, Charlesmark Hotel, and Hotel 140.

Perhaps the biggest thing to draw people to this city is Fenway Park. If you want to join in the excitement of a Red Sox game, you can check out cheap hotels in Boston. The Sheraton is located just 116 yards from Fenway Park, and it’s fairly affordable. Other budget hotels within a mile are Copley House, Midtown Hotel, and Boston Park Plaza.

Cheap Hotels in Boston Near Harvard Square and Airport

If you’re visiting the Harvard area, there are some nice hotels near Harvard Square. They aren’t necessarily the cheapest, but you still might be able to get a good deal with travel coupons. Studio Allston Hotel, Le Meridien Cambridge (MIT), Freepoint, Kimpton Marlowe, and Porter Square are a few to consider.

Only staying in Boston for a night due to a layover flight? There is some cheap accommodation close to Logan International, like the Harborside Inn, the Hilton, and Hyatt Regency Boston Harbor.

If you don’t have any specific landmark or neighborhood in mind, just get a map of the city. What interests you? What hotels will be easy to get to from the airport, bus station, or train station? Which shops would you like to check out? Which restaurants appeal to you? Keep these questions in mind when searching for cheap hotels in Boston. There will surely be affordable accommodation that will suit your preferences.

Get travel coupons online, at sites for comparing hotel rates and booking vacations. You can use promo codes to help you save even more on cheap hotels in Boston. While you’re at it, you might want to book airfare, car rental, and more.…

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Vacation Travel Deals Tips – A Few Ideas for Saving on Future Travel Expenses

Any savvy traveler knows to use comparison shopping websites to find vacation travel deals. It’s very easy to combine every leg of a journey online these days, without having to hire a travel agent to search for deals on your behalf.

You can start the planning process by getting organized. Determine your budget, come up with some dates (the more flexible, the better), and make a list of destinations you would like to consider. Find out when the tourist season is for each of the destinations and look for deals during OFF season, when airfare and hotels will be a lot cheaper.

Another way to find vacation travel deals is to wait for last minute discounts to pop up. This can be a great way to save if you are not particularly picky about where and when you are going. Many of the leading travel discount sites offer apps and free newsletters that will alert you of all of the best deals daily, weekly, or monthly. You can also use apps to track plane ticket and hotel prices.

Always take advantage of free membership programs, like frequent flyer programs, credit card points, military discounts, student discounts, group discounts, Triple A programs, and so forth. Even if you’re not sure if you qualify for any special discount or reward, it’s still worth looking into.

If you want to go on a cruise, check into repositioning cruise offers. Since cruise lines move their ships around different regions during the season, there are short periods of time when they offer discounts to tourists. These are referred to as one-way repositioning cruises, and are significantly less than the regular high-season cruise. The only problem with this type of cruise is that your journey will end at another city from where you started out at – in another region of the country or even continent. Because of this, you will have to make sure the one-way airfare back home is worth the discount of the cruise.

Additional Tips for Cheaper Vacation Travel Deals

Wednesdays are typically the cheapest days to fly domestically, followed by Tuesday. Be on the lookout for popup deals right after midnight on Wednesday mornings and just after 3 PM on Tuesdays.

If you will be traveling with family, one of the very first things to look for is a hotel that offers free meals for kids. Also, don’t rent a car right at the airport because airport car rental rates tend to cost a lot more than the rates of off-airport rental offices – even if it’s the same company. Book your room at a hotel that is easy to get to from the airport. Some even offer free shuttles back and forth.

When shopping online for vacation travel deals, carefully read over the details so you’ll know exactly what the price covers.

You’ll be guaranteed to save on your next trip by booking online. Discounts on cruises, all inclusive packages, airfare, entertainment, and other travel related expenses are frequently popping …

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Adventure Travel: Maui

If you can dream it, you can find and experience it on the exotic and fun-filled island destination, Maui. Lush hiking trails in the wooded highlands or along the lower edges of the waterfalls will wrap you in the sweet perfume of red ginger and plumeria. Your eyes will be dazzled by the verdant greens, yellows, bright oranges, and reds; colors you can’t reproduce on a printed page or even online. You just have to experience it! What’s your pleasure? Surfing, hang gliding, fishing, jet skiing, scuba diving, golf, whale watching, a swim in the ocean or in the clear waterfall pools? The activities on Maui fit every personality, budget and adventure level.

Cruises, for dinner, sailing, snorkeling tours, or whale watching are the most popular activities people pay for on the island. With good reason too. The clear, placid waters surrounding Maui are unparalleled across the globe.

Haleakala

Did you know the entire island of Manhattan could easily fit inside the crater of Holeakala? Not that we’re shipping it there, but what a perspective! For centuries, the three a.m. ascent, in anticipation of the sunrise, to the top of the Holeakala volcano has topped the list of Maui activities as a ‘must-do’ for visitors from around the world. Mark Twain called it “…the sublimest spectacle I have witnessed.” (Be sure to call 808-877-5111 for a weather report before you get on your way.)

The island’s best camping is found at the Haleakala National Park. With a three-night maximum, you might mix it up with stays at one or more of the posh resorts on Maui’s beaches. Since 1946, the Hotel Hana Maui has retained its reputation as an exclusive hideaway. It is walking distance to Kaihalulu, the only volcanic red-sand beach in the pacific.

Snorkeling on Maui’s Coasts

If you love to snorkel, and are traveling with a scuba diving friend, Maui offers great experiences you can do together. Snorkeling cruises include dive locations where you can snorkel at the water’s surface, paddling gently with your fins, and be surrounded by colorful fish, coral, and marine life, as you observe the divers exploring the sea below.

Some of the best snorkeling destinations on Maui are located right in front of a beautiful hotel. When that’s the case, the hotel may cooperate with a dive shop to provide equipment and local snorkeling guides. Three of these destinations are Kapalua Beach, in front of the Kapalua Bay Hotel, Napili Bay Beach and Wailea Beach, which fronts the Four Seasons. The snorkeling is particularly good in the clear waters near the lava rocks that form the bays at Wailea and Kapalua,. Also, well loved for snorkeling adventures, are the Mokapu and Ulna beaches in Wailea.

The Hard-to Find Snorkeling Destinations

Black Rock at Kaanapali beach is considered by the locals to be the best snorkeling spot on the island. West Maui, a well-loved protected marine-life conservation district; is another ‘don’t-miss-it’ destination for avid Maui snorkelers. Another not-so-well-known location is the spot at …

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Remaining Relevant – Edging Out Your Competition in the Hotel Industry

Unless they’re historic bed and breakfast inns, most hotels are modern and up-to-date, boasting high speed internet, sound wave alarm clocks and versatile hangers, among other hotel supplies. If you’re like most people who work in hotels and handle the amenities, in some capacity, on a daily basis, after a while you might not notice the details anymore. As with most day-to-day tasks, buying hotel supplies and amenities can become routine especially when you’re tasked with balancing budgetary constraints, style needs and guest preferences. If hotel supplies such as towels, ice buckets and bed spreads become dated, hotels can become dated, too, and get lost amongst the competition.

Hotels that are successful long-term attribute their success, in part, to their ability to remain relevant which means they know themselves and their brand identity. They also know the hotels near them and what makes them stand out. When you think about your hotel, what do people pay for? Is your service exceptional?

Maybe the views are amazing and the hotel supplies and amenities are unique. If luxury and convenience define your business, plush robes and bed linens and complimentary breakfast would be relevant hotel supplies and amenities. To maintain their place among the masses, hotels must keep current with trends to remain competitive and relevant.

Timeliness very likely isn’t a high priority for you or anybody else who works in hotels. However, if hotels want to maintain occupancy rates, attract new business and offer a great overall experience ensuring that everything from the amenities and hotel supplies to the color palettes and furniture are current and inviting is paramount. Have you ever gotten a room in a modern hotel and, upon walking into the room itself, felt like you traveled in time back to the early 1990s or worse, and it’s not a historic hotel? While it might not affect the visit, most people think less of hotels that are dated, especially when the amenities, hotel supplies and conveniences one would expect are either not offered or unavailable during their stay.

Whether you’re working for an eclectic bed and breakfast or a posh spa resort, conveying value to your guests is important. Quality amenities and hotel supplies, amazing views, superb locations and complimentary meals or snacks all convey the “we’re trying to maximize your dollar” message. It’s important, especially when consumers of every stripe are counting their pennies and paying more attention to what they’re getting for their money than ever before. While hotel supplies and amenities are important components of hotels, they aren’t everything. The cleanliness of your hotel, a responsive staff, spacious guest rooms and modern furnishings all play important roles in the overall guest experience.

Being and remaining competitive in the hospitality industry is no small feat. Maintaining your edge by providing quality hotel supplies and amenities helps you as the competition among hotels is stiff almost everywhere. When people feel like their opinion matters, when they see updated fixtures, renovations that modernize hotels and high quality hotel …

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Ski Vacation Tips: Go Green to Prevent Them From Melting

Planning on a ski vacation this year? Why not consider skiing green this time. With Earth getting hotter than usual due to global warming, ski resorts are mostly affected by this change. At present, they are now thinking of ways on how they can help to mitigate the problem.

The good news is, you too can do something to help reduce this problem. There are various ways that you can do to make it happen. You may think that your individual efforts aren’t enough to make a difference, but they do! So, here are some eco-friendly tips that you can do to help preserve our environment.

Ride smart for a greener trip

Instead of flying to other places for your ski trip, travel to ski resorts closer to your home. The good thing about this is you can pack other things like a cooler and enjoy your own food, drinks and snacks.

Also, if your friends and coworkers share the same interest as you do, you can carpool with them. But if you insist on flying to other destinations, you can also ask if the resort offers a shuttle service to and from the airport. This will allow you to save on gas instead of renting a car.

Choose greener ski resorts

Resorts are more aware now of the impacts of climate change and are now inclined towards pursuing a greener environment. In order to make greener choices, you may ask questions before you make a reservation. You can ask them questions such as:

What do they recycle?

Do they have a water conservation program?

Are their cleaning products eco-friendly?

Do their machines that help clear trails use bio-fuel?

Do they use wind power for energy needs?

Do they offer a shuttle service to and from the airport?

This will help them realize that their efforts in being an eco-friendly resort, really do matters. Also, compliment them on their efforts and encourage them to continue to maintain an eco-friendly facility.

Cross-country skiing? Why not!

You may also consider cross-country skiing this year. This can be done in many “local” places depending on the snowfall in your area. The good thing is, cross-country skiing burns more calories than resources, compared to downhill skiing.

Respect the environment

Every time tourists flock to ski resorts, it’s the environment that suffers due to the irresponsibility of the people. So be responsible with your trash every time you visit any ski resorts. Don’t throw your garbage everywhere. Use biodegradable products and reduce the use of plastic bags. Follow proper segregation and as much as possible, recycle.

With these simple tips, you will not only enjoy your ski vacation, you’ll also be able to help the planet from further devastation. So think green, go green, and support a greener ski vacation. Let’s continue to take care of this planet we call home.…

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