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I Never Travel Abroad Without These 10 Things

Plan Your First Trip To Europe – As A Grown-Up

Congratulations! You’ve just decided to see more of the world and plan your first trip to Europe. It’s an exciting decision but… …yikes !! What do you do now to make this dream a reality?!   Where should you go?   How do you get there?   It can seem overwhelming… I got the name “TravelBoy” because anytime…

Gondolas parked in Venice

How to Visit Venice in 3 Days

POST IN-PROGRESS – MORE COMING As part of a 10 day trip to Northern Italy, I recently set my sights on visiting  the remarkable city of Venice for the first time.   As soon as I announced this to friends, I surprisingly received an equal amount of “Oh I love it” and “Ugh – it’s awful”…

Hotel Canal Grande

Hotel Canal Grande Venice

The Hotel Canal Grande Venice, in the northern neighborhood of Santa Croce, close to the main railway station, was a welcome respite from the city’s crowds

View From Marais Apartment

Hotel v. Airbnb – 10 Tips for Novice Travelers

First-time travelers to Europe have more options than ever when it comes to where to stay. After you’ve picked your first European destination comes the age-old debate:  Hotel v. Airbnb. Yes, you’ll have to decide between booking a hotel or short-term apartment rental — using one of the numerous direct-to-homeowner services, like Airbnb, HomeAway or…

Bed in Junior Suite


London is one of my favorite cities in the world, and I usually try to go once a year, even though I live far away in Southern California. When I go, it’s usually to cram in plenty of theatre, museums, shopping and eating.  I always stay in Central London — either in Soho, Covent Garden,…

Brandenberg GAte

8 Must See Sights in Berlin

Berlin is a vast and vibrant city. Since the reunification of East and West in 1990, the city has taken tremendous leaps forward — as a major destination for tourism and, most notably, as a trendsetter in art and design. When I visited for the first time this summer, I had so so many items…

Exterior view of Fondation Louis Vuitton

Fondation Louis Vuitton Paris Celebrates MoMA

American architect Frank Gehry has a stunning new building in Paris which houses the new Fondation Louis Vuitton museum. Don’t be fooled by the name: this is not a collection of sexy bags and commercial leather goods! No, the museum is the creation of the Group LVMH designed to showcase art and culture of the…

Exterior of Picasso Museum Paris

Visiting the Picasso Museum Paris

On my recent trip to France, I had the chance to re-visit the newly renovated Picasso Museum Paris (officially the Musée Picasso Paris). Located in the gloriously restored Hotel Salé, which dates back to 1656, the museum houses a permanent and temporary exhibits of the master’s work. Housed in a former private residence on the…

Delicious Fish Dinner at Fiskebaren Copenhagen

While on a recent trip to Copenhagen, I was eager to explore Vesterbro, the former meat-packing neighborhood of the city and, ironically, ended up having the most delicious fish dinner at Fiskebaren Copenhagen (Fish Bar) in the process. Vesterbro was once the epicenter of the city’s industrial meat business and is now an area with…

Fireworks in front of the London Eye

New Year’s Eve in London, Paris and Barcelona

New Year’s Eve always feels like a really big deal in the USA. The parties, the Times Square crowds, live countdown shows on TV with A-List celebrities — the works. Over the past decade, I’ve mainly spent New Year’s Eve abroad — three times in London, three times in Paris, and once in Barcelona —…

Air France A380 Plane Flying

Watch an Air France A380 take-off from its Tail Camera

Did you ever want to watch your own plane taking off?   Air France equipped their A380 planes with an external camera in the tail, which you can watch throughout the flight via the plane’s in-flight entertainment system.   It’s particularly fascinating to watch an Air France A380 take-off from its tail camera — though you do…

Paris Opera - facade at night

The Paris Opera that Inspired “The Phantom…”

Did you know that the Paris Opera house was the inspiration for The Phantom of The Opera, and that several of the stories and settings in the book (and musical) are based on real-life circumstances? Neither did I — at least not until I decided to take a Paris Opera tour after years of passing…