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Everybody loves a good party, especially when we’re talking about Mardi Gras in New Orleans. The famed multi-week carnival culminates this year on March 4 - also known as “Fat Tuesday” - and promises to end your winter blues with its unique brand of devil-may-care hospitality. Internally renowned for its one-of-a-kind parades, colorful costumes and beads, jazz rhythms, historical landmarks, and Cajun cuisine, Mardi Gras is the celebration to end all celebrations.
What’s the big deal about partying in the “Big Easy” during Mardi Gras? Plenty. You can bar-hop down the famed Bourbon Street. Dance to Zydeco at an out-of-the-way blues club. Sample jambalaya in the French Quarter. Shop on the eclectic Magazine Street. Or catch your favorite krewe marching in one of the numerous parades.
But one thing - you have to start planning today. Like now. New Orleans. is filling up fast for Mardi Gras. And that’s where we come in. Last Minute Travel and LMT Club can help you save during your stay with some pretty sweet deals on these New Orleans hotels through March 31, 2014.
Check out the Hilton New Orleans Riverside, which overlooks the Mississippi River and is only three blocks from the French Quarter. The hotel includes multiple on-site restaurants, and is also across the street from Harrah’s New Orleans casino. While the Intercontinental New Orleans offers a centralized location in the business district that is just minutes from the action. And don’t forget about the Hilton Garden Inn New Orleans French Quarter, which features a rooftop pool.
To fully experience Mardi Gras, your best bet is to arrive a few days early or stay a few days late. Once you get to know this beloved U.S. city, you may not want to leave. Book at these select New Orleans hotels, and you’ll save $35 on your hotel room (subject to availability, limitations apply). Reserve your room today, and then get ready for the party of your life!
No matter what city they call home, one of our travelers’ FAVORITE destinations for work and for play, is New York City. While many of our travelers are already aware of the awesome hotels – at even “awesomer” prices – we offer in the Big Apple, not everyone is aware of all the different fun activities they can book for less at the same time they book their hotel. In this post, we will share five of our favorite New York hotels along with some of the fun activities you can do near each hotel.
First on our list is the Grand Hyatt. Just steps away from Grand Central Terminal, the Grand Hyatt New York boasts an ideal Manhattan location, and Park Avenue, Fifth Avenue, Central Park, Times Square, Rockefeller Center, Broadway’s theaters, and great dining are right outside your door.
A New York hotel legend, the Grand Hyatt has been recently renovated to provide guests with modern, sophisticated spaces that work whether you’re in the city for business or fun. The Grand Hyatt’s Business Plan offers wireless Internet, breakfast and other perks, while the Explore Package opens the doors to the Museum of Natural History.
Another fun activity that you can enjoy during your stay at the Grand Hyatt is the NYC Walking Tour Audio Guide – a narrated double-decker bus ride that travels through famous (and infamous…) NYC locations.
The Doubletree Metropolitan Hotel by Hilton is another luxurious – and affordable! – option. The Doubletree by Hilton Metropolitan Hotel is perfectly located at Lexington Avenue (at 51st Street) in the heart of Midtown Manhattan’s fashionable East Side. This also newly renovated, iconic hotel is steps from Park Avenue, Bloomingdales, Madison Avenue shopping, the United Nations, Central Park, St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Rockefeller Center, Radio City Music Hall, Broadway’s theaters, The Museum of Modern Art, and other famous museums. While visiting the Doubletree Metropolitan hotel you can enjoy one of off-Broadway’s recent big hit shows, Avenue Q. Avenue Q is the story of Princeton, a bright-eyed college grad who comes to New York City with big dreams and a tiny bank account. We all love underdog stories, right? Guess what, we won’t tell you the rest. You’ll have to see the show. J
Astor on the Park is another great New York hotel. The Astor on the Park is even more affordable than the two former hotels, and perfect for the traveler on a limited budget. The hotel along 465 Central Park West is your personal gateway to Central Park. The recently refurbished seven-story hotel offers proximity to key attractions-including the Radio City Music Hall, the Museum of Modern Art, Rockefeller Center, and sweeping Central Park views. Since the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) is a short walk away, it is a great opportunity to pay it a visit. MoMA’s unparalleled collection offers a comprehensive, panoramic overview of modern and contemporary art, from the innovative European painting and sculpture of the 1880s to current film, design, and performance art.
Another great hotel for travelers on a budget is the Pennsylvania. This Manhattan hotel is located across the street from Madison Square Garden and Penn Station. The hotel offers a gym and a tour desk with ticket services. If you’re in Manhattan, see it from the air! Take The Ultimate Helicopter Tour. As you are seated in comfort, take an extended harbor excursion that includes a distant view of the magnificent Verrazano Bridge and Governors Island. Then, cruising up the Hudson River, behold the man-made miracle of the George Washington Bridge and nature’s miraculous New Jersey Palisades. Sign me up!
Our last hotel in our post is The Lexington. At The Lexington New York City, it’s never business as usual. Smart, social and sophisticated, the newly renovated Lexington New York City inspires with a setting straight from the Jazz Age. Inside New York City’s newest Autograph Collection hotel, guests will discover a vibrant boutique hotel experience with all the special privileges, deluxe amenities and personalized attention expected from a world-class hotel. Keeping along with the Jazz theme, we recommend the Soul Food and Jazz Tour. On this activity, you will be able to see the site of the original Cotton Club, where Duke Ellington and Lena Horne spent hours wowing crowds from around the world. Drive past the site of the Savoy Ballroom where Benny Goodman and Chick Webb fought it out during their “Battle of the Bands,” and where the Charleston, “Lindy Hop” and the “Big Apple” dances were firmly cemented into American culture.
Since Thanksgiving and the end-of-year holiday season are here, we decided to send our traveling turkey, Turk (yes, just like Turk from the TV series "Scrubs"!) to check out hotels in some of the most popular destinations around the world to find the best holiday deals. Since Turk LOVES to eat, he also wanted an expense budget that would cover his sampling of the hotels’ special holiday menus. As we didn’t want Turk to get his feathers ruffled, we went ahead and approved his trip, as long as he prepared a trip report to share what he learned.
Turk started his "research" trip right here in suburban Orlando. His first destination was the luxurious Hyatt Regency Grand Cypress. The Hyatt is located next to the Orlando’s Lake Buena Vista theme parks. After unpacking his bag, Turk immediately went to test out his swing at the hotel’s Jack Nicklaus golf courses. Four hours later, and very much exhausted, Turk decided to treat himself to a spa treatment, which he then followed with an afternoon nap in his spacious suite overlooking gardens, waterfalls, and Lake Buena Vista. One of the perks of being a Last Minute Travel official hotel deal hunter, is that you get to sample hotels’ holiday menus well before the holidays! Turk’s restaurant of choice, one of several that operate at the Hyatt Regency Grand Cypress was Cascades American Bistro, which offers classics infused with new flavors. His favorite dish was the Grilled N.Y. Strip Steak, served with parmesan-glazed ricotta gnocchi; cilantro, thyme, and pine nut pesto; and Yukon Gold mashed potatoes with sweet peppers. For desert, Turk packed away the S’more Brownie Sundae topped with vanilla and chocolate ice cream, hand-made marshmallows, and graham cracker cookie sticks. After this turkeylicious meal, Turk crashed to rest up for his next city. A quick morning coffee, and Turk flew off to his next destination - Las Vegas!
Viva Las Vegas!
After arriving in Las Vegas, Turk headed to the next hotel deal on his list, the Venetian Resort-Hotel-Casino. Turk checked into his luxury suite, and took off to hit the casinos! Lady Luck was not with Turk tonight, despite trying all of the game tables, poker rooms, roulette wheels, and slot machines. Since Turk always keeps enough money aside for food, Turk set off for the best food the Venetian has to offer. The setting for his post-gaming dinner was AquaKnox, a newly opened seafood restaurant. For his main dish, Turk picked George’s Bank Scallops - black truffle creamed corn with apple wood smoked bacon polenta with a side of jumbo asparagus (Turk does love his corn!). After the night’s events, once again Turk retired to his comfy bed.
London for Thanksgiving?! Why not! Turk boarded the plane for his direct flight to Heathrow. Turk’s London hotel of choice is the Rosewood London. Even outside the U.S., Turk loves comfort and luxurious accommodations, so he booked himself the Premier Suite. After an extensive city tour that included some of London’s main attractions, including: Big Ben, London Dungeon, , the Houses of Parliament, and Westminster Abbey, Turk was hungry as a horse after a race at Ascot. So it was time to check out the Rosewood London’s dinner menu. Turk’s decided on the Holborn Dining room, and after finishing a massive steak and an entire Shepherd’s Pie, Turk concluded that the British food is quite tasty! It was now time for Turk to head back to Orlando, and submit his travel deals report.
Back in the States
After a discussion about winning gaming strategies in Las Vegas, Turk finally finished his travel report. After reviewing the report with his superiors, Turk was dumbstruck to learn that he had saved 55% on his hotels by simply booking his hotels on Last Minute Travel Club. And yes, Turk has already booked his next trip back to Las Vegas! Book YOUR next trip on Last Minute Travel Club and save big. Turk’s even giving away a free year’s membership to the Club when you register on http://lmtclub.com with the promo code TURKEYSENTME.
|Halloween is just around the corner, so now’s the perfect time to decide which city throws the best party, so you can decide where you want to celebrate Halloween this year! If you’re reading this at your parents’ kitchen table, debating with your younger brother, which of your neighbors gives out the “good” candy, this article is not for you. But, if you’ve been working for months on a jaw-dropping, one-of-a-kind costume, and are looking for just the right Halloween party to show it off, keep on reading! We went to some of the best Halloween experts we could find to pull together the top Halloween cities and events for 2013. And as WE are the experts in bringing you great hotel deals, we just had to include our own list of the Best Hotels for Halloween in each city so you can save your money for the good candy!|
|George Pachecho’s “Boston’s Best 2013 Halloween Parties”
Where all the boo-tiful people stay in Boston:
|Deborah Flomberg’s “Top 2013 Halloween Parties In Denver”
No one likes a horror-filled hotel, even on Halloween. We prefer awesome in our hotels,
|Jeffrey B. Roth’s “Top 2013 Halloween Parties In Philadelphia”
Looking for the hot guys and cool ghouls in Philly? You’ve found them:
|Sara Lugardo’s “Best 2013 Halloween Parties In Chicago”
It’s a proven fact that witches and warlocks pick the best hotels. In Chicago, they stay at:
|Londonist’s “Halloween Events in London 2013″
Now London is a city that loves a good beheading:
|Kate Wertheimer’s “Best Halloween parties in Los Angeles 2013″
Warm weather? Hot ghosts? Only in Los Angeles:
|Rachel Cooper’s “Best Halloween Events 2013 in Washington, DC, Maryland and Virginia”
We may not know the difference between a goblin and a hobgoblin, but we know that whenin D.C., they both prefer to stay here:
The vacation rental trend is soaring in popularity in North America and beyond. The benefits are obvious as to why seasoned travelers are trying out this spacious, private, money saving option. Consider it nice change of pace for the typical road-weary, hotel veteran looking for a cost-effective accommodation alternative or a family looking to break free from the hotel room norm.
Setting aside the automatic status upgrade you receive from merely mentioning that you’re staying in a villa, condo, townhome or cabin for a week, vacation homes give you the freedom to make a more memorable and cozy experience for family and friends traveling with you (and making those jealous who aren’t with you). These rentals are not only designated by the multiple rooms they have, but the cost per person is comparable to that of a typical hotel stay. More rooms means more space and thus one comfortable, complaint-free family. Imagine staying in a place with the comforts of home, without doing the cleaning of home – now that’s vacation paradise! More than that, these rentals are ideal for group vacations and just as simple to book.
What seals the deal for most travelers is the worry free online booking, the instant confirmation and the fact that all the properties we offer are professionally managed by the top property management companies in the market. This means that you get the same sense of security when you book your vacation as you do when booking a hotel and you know that there is someone always ready to assist, from check-in to departure to handle any special needs you may have.
With the greater privacy that staying in a single property brings, you can feel right at home with amenities such as private pools, full kitchens and entertainment centers to use as you please. You also have more control over the dining options for your group. Rather than being confined to room service choices or having to spend a fortune at a nearby touristy restaurant, you can opt to utilize the kitchen for snack storage and cooking or you can order in to save a trip. Of course, the option to go out for dinner is always there!
For a hassle-free, relaxing vacation you won’t soon forget, give our vacation homes a try. Because no two rentals are exactly the same, staying in a vacation home is always a completely unique experience!
Found a vacation home deal you fancy? Use coupon code ‘VH25′ and get $25 discount!*
*With purchases of $500 or more.
Are you thinking of taking a trip to Europe this summer? Need some extra info to help you reach a decision? If some of your possible destinations are Ireland or Spain, you would definitely want to read our articles about Seville & Belfast. In these articles you will get all the information you need - From fun activities & shopping centers to affordable hotels and restaurants.
Our nation’s soldiers are celebrated heroes, with stories that reach the hearts and minds of the young and old.
Whether you’re a veteran yourself who fought alongside those lost, or a student learning about these wars and battles from the pages of a textbook, memorials help provide additional insight into our country’s history.
With Memorial Day around the corner, we give you three memorials worth visiting to reflect and remember.
1. Korean War Veterans Memorial
Upon arriving, soldiers dressed in stainless steel greet you, set in stances that suggest they’re on their way to something important. Moving through the bushes, they stand alongside walls sandblasted with commemorative images and a shallow Remembrance Pool for reflection.
Constructed in Washington, D.C., and dedicated in 1995, the Korean War Veterans Memorial honors all those who served in the Korean War. This battle between North and South Korea took place from June 1950 to July 1953.
2. U.S. Marine Corps War Memorial
Bronze soldiers gather to raise a flagpole in this memorial monument honoring all United States Marine Corps personnel who have lost their lives in duty since 1775.
The U.S. Marine Corps War Memorial has sat on a pedestal outside the Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia, since its 1954 dedication. The pedestal base is engraved with the following phrase: “Uncommon valor was a common virtue.”
3. Gettysburg National Military Park
The Battle of Gettysburg was a significant turning point in the Civil War, as it was the first major defeat suffered by the Confederacy. The battle is remembered at Gettysburg National Military Park, where visitors can tour the battlefield (now speckled with monuments and cannons) and visit the spot where Abraham Lincoln delivered his famous Gettysburg Address.
Composed of 5,989 acres of land, the park also provides ample opportunities to hike, bike, horseback ride and more. Visit the official website of the Gettysburg National Military Park for more things to see and do on your trip to the battlefield.
Historic Travel Quick Tip
As you visit these memorials, try to take away one fun fact about the event, person or people the memorial represents—expand your knowledge of our nation’s history!
Share your historic travel experiences in the comments below.
Edinburgh is one of Europe’s most beautiful cities, draped across a series of rocky hills overlooking the sea. It’s a town intimately entwined with its landscape, with buildings and monuments perched atop crags and overshadowed by cliffs - in the words of Robert Louis Stevenson, ‘a dream in masonry and living rock’. From the Old Town’s picturesque jumble of medieval tenements piled high along the Royal Mile, its turreted skyline strung between the black, bull-nosed Castle Rock and the russet palisade of Salisbury Crags, to the New Town’s neat grid of neoclassical respectability, all columns and capitals, porticoes and pediments, the city offers a constantly changing perspective. And it’s all small enough to explore easily on foot.
One of our favorite hotels in Edinburgh is the Tune Hotel Haymarket, which is directly across the road from the entrance to Haymarket Rail Station and centrally located to all the main attractions in the city. Tune Hotel Haymarket is just a mere 15 minutes’ walk to Edinburgh Castle and Princes Street which is the main shopping street in Edinburgh. Other attractions include Edinburgh International Conference Centre (only 7 minutes’ walk away), Murrayfield Stadium and Edinburgh Zoo is just a short 8 minutes’ drive away.
Change up your holiday destination this year. (…Or next year, and consider this just amazing pre-planning!)
The Global Grasshopper has some great suggestions for an alternative to your typical holiday destination. They include Edinburgh where lively Christmas celebrations continue through early January, Australia where December is the first month of summer, and more.
Take a peek at this fun and informative article for your own Christmas alternative trip ideas/inspiration or just a little old-fashioned day dreaming.