Saturday, November 15, 2014

We found Nemo at the Boston Waterfront

We enjoyed meeting Myrtle, the giant turtle and we found Nemo at the New England Aquarium (‏@NEAQ). They even have dragons! (Sea-dragon, to be precise) But the penguins were the cutest to watch.


Make sure that you spend time researching to check out ticket pricing discounts, because the cost is a bit steep. We paid about $100 for 3 adults and a 3 year old. It is located at 1 Central Wharf Boston, MA.

We stayed at the Renaissance Boston Waterfront Hotel. They have a nice fireplace in the foyer lounge that was nice to step into from the freezing cold outside. Unfortunately, they did not have the warm fireplace on the next morning. It would have been pleasant to feel comforted from the frigid weather. Can’t imagine why they don’t use it if they have it, considering that it is easy to switch on the fake fire. I had the feeling that the hotel concentrates all their efforts on Weddings. The noisy wedding, the previous night resulted in a grumpy me after not getting enough beauty sleep. The Breakfast buffet is good but a bit pricey. $40 per person. Marriott Reward Platinum Elite members get a Continental breakfast for free but we had guests and had to pay for the full breakfast. It is the first hotel of their brands that enforced the Continental Breakfast rule. Most of the other hotels just let Elite members have the full buffet,since it is usually “self service.WP_20141101_22_36_17_Pro

The Aquarium is at Central Wharf, and their website stated that they are next to the Boston Marriott Long Wharf Hotel and near Faneuil Hall/ Quincy Market, but the walk from Faneuil Hall seemed very long in the freezing rain. We decided to take an Uber car to return to our parked car at Faneuil Hall. The Aquarium can be accessed by MBTA/subway and boat, on a good day but we had miserable weather. The only way to exit the Aquarium is through the gift shop. This is not so easily done with a child grabbing at all the Disney fish toys, though it was a delight to watch the little Angels face as she discovered all the amazing sea creatures.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Do you trust online reviews?

My reviews are un-biased, so I seldom read or write reviews on the big review sites because I cant help suspecting that most of the reviews are written by staff of that particular establishment.

It’s crazy how most reviewers claim that their hotel is “clean” ! I think that is insane. All hotels SHOULD  BE  clean or they should not be in business. The reviewers must have low standards?

I seldom write reviews on these sites, in fact it has been more than a year since I wrote one, so I was astonished that they sent me an email telling me that I am in the top 10%. It is brilliant marketing on their part because I felt obliged to write a review. TripAdvisor  has hotel reviews and travel advice for vacations.


If you are in the hospitality industry, whether it is a hotel or a restaurant, it should be clean!!! Even fast food Restaurants know that cleanliness is the cornerstone of a business, so McDonalds and Burger King employ their own inspectors. For those that don’t have in-house inspectors, the Government (City) has food inspectors. Food Safety and Inspection Service by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Tripadvisor has a handy symbol on the Stock Market. TRIP. Liberty Media purchases nearly 4.8 million shares of Tripadvisor from Barry Diller and his foundation so Shares of Expedia were higher on that news. But both are down today. Airfarewatchdog™, the most inclusive source of airfare deals researched is verified by experts as is TripAdvisors. on Nov 13th 2014 launched Hotelwatchdog, – a free new service to compares hotels based on price, location and traveler reviews.  Hotelwatchdog sifts through millions of data points and delivers the most relevant hotel results based on a destination selected by the traveler.  TripAdvisor is still the world's largest travel site for trip planning.They also made an announcement today to launch a new feature that allows users to easily compare and book tours and tickets for attractions Globally by integrating tour inventory and pricing information from Viator, which was acquired by TripAdvisor.

Perhaps I will go to the site more often and take it more seriously than I have due to deriding its content. It really annoys me when I read a review of a Hotel claiming to be “clean” .