Archive | February, 2013

Ski Resorts for Beginners

18 Feb

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A couple weeks ago someone I know went on a ski vacation in Colorado at a resort called Steamboat Ski & Resort.  I had never really wanted to go on a ski vacation before, but, after seeing his pictures, I have been doing some research on where the best ski resorts are for beginners like me.   This research is in hopes that next winter Matt and I will be able to take a true ski vacation.

Below I have listed some of the ski resorts that I found that are said to be good for beginners
.   Now, I will fully admit that I have not done thorough research just yet, but I thought I would put out the list on CourtneyMara.com and next year do some follow-up research.  So, without further ado, below is a list of ski resorts that I found through research I conducted through Google that are said to be good for beginners.  Please let me know in the comments section if you are familiar with any of these destinations!

CALIFORNIA

Alpine Meadows

Heavenly Mountain Resort

Northstar-at-Tahoe

Squaw Valley

CANADA 

Mont Sainte Anne

COLORADO:

Aspen

Breckenridge

Copper Mountain

Keystone Ski Resort

Steamboat Ski Resort

Telluride

IDAHO

Sun Valley

MAINE

Sunday River

NEVADA

Diamond Peak

OREGON

Timberline Lodge

UTAH

Brian Head

Brighton

Deer Valley

Powder Mountain

Solitude

Wolf Creek

VERMONT

Stratton Mountain Ski Resort

Mount Snow

 

Do you have a recommendation for a great ski resort for beginners?    Please share your tips on CourtneyMara.com!

A few hours in Florence

15 Feb

Matt and I only spent two evenings in Florence.  We arrived on a Tuesday night, spent Wednesday exploring Tuscany, and then had another evening in Florence before leaving early Thursday morning.  From our short time period there, the following are my Florence recommendations:

  • Take a ride on the carousel at Piazza della Republica

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  • Eat, eat and eat.  It’s Italy so you have to eat, eat and eat!   We went to two restaurants while in Florence.  I  HIGHLY recommend Ristorante del Fagioli (see first picture below), but remember to bring cash.  They do not take credit cards.  The food was amazing.  We also ate at the place where the cast of MTV’s Jersey Shore worked in Florence, Pizzeria Napoletana O’Vesuvio (see second picture below).  Matt loved this place.  I think I just picked the wrong pizza.

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  • See where Michelangelo’s David originally stood outside the  Palazzo della Signoria and where there is now a replica

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  • See the Duoma

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  • See and shop on Ponte Vecchio (the bridge in the photo below)

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There is obviously a ton more to do in Florence if you are there during the daytime.  If we had been there during the daytime, my top picks would have been:
  • Climb the Duoma’s dome
  • Bike to Piazzale Michelangelo for the terrific views
  • Walk through the Uffizi Gallery
  • See the original David at the Galleria dell’Accademia

Enjoy Florence!

Valentine’s Day in the District

7 Feb

Are you still looking for Valentine’s Day ideas?  Well, below are some of my favorite Valentine’s Day activities in the DC area:

  • Bring a picnic to Gravelly Point (VA) and watch the planes take off and land.

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  • Want to feel relaxed?  Visit a spa.  To make it more “coupley” – get a couples massage.  Matt and I had a couples massage at M3 in Georgetown.
  • Do you want to do the dinner and a movie?  Well, I would recommend dinner at Filomena in Georgetown and then a romantic movie at AMC Loews Georgetown.
  • Like to ice skate?  Go ice skating in Georgetown and then follow it up with dinner and, more importantly, dessert at Serendipity 3.

Serendipidity

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  • If you love chocolate & wine, you must try Coco Sala.  They have a special Valentine’s Day menu for $120 per person with wine pairings.
  • Something I have never done, but would LOVE to do is an Odyssey or Spirit of Washington cruise.  Spirit‘s Valentine’s Day packages start at  $99.90 per person.    Odyssey‘s prices start at $129.90 per person.
  • Another great option is to take a cooking class together at Sur La Table in Arlington, VA (click here).  The price for the class is $79pp and includes the dinner menu you will be able to eat afterwards.

For a list of restaurants with Valentine’s Day offers, check out OpenTable.com.

What are your DC Valentine’s Day plans?

Great activities around Mürren, Switzerland

3 Feb

Interested in traveling to Switzerland? Check out Wyman Stocks’ post about activities around Murren, Switzerland. You can find other great posts by Stocks at http://wymanstocks.com!