RentaVilla.com
FEATURED PROPERTY
Riad Marrakesh 1

Riad Marrakesh 1

Riad Marrakesh 1

Morocco

If you are looking for something that will always be remembered, Riad Marrakesh 1 sits on 4 acres in Morocco and has 5 bedrooms. There is an interior courtyard, two roof terraces, private pond shaped swimming pool, garden hot tub, shared tennis court, and a shared large subterranean Hammam (a traditional steam bath with plunge pool). The property is a 15 minute drive from the center of the city of Marrakech and 30 minutes from the airport, located in an exclusive area of the Palmeraie, a grove of one hundred and fifty thousand palm trees with amazing views of the Atlas and Jebl Ette Mountains.

Inviting alcove

Inviting alcove

On the North side, the tranquil view is of palm trees and farms on the protected government land, where you have scenes of grazing sheep and passing camels. On the southern side, the view is of the Atlas Mountains that are framed by the luxury houses of the neighbors. The decor is a mix of traditional Moroccan styles and textiles, which skillfully integrates modern amenities and fabrics. There are 17 members of staff including a general manager, chef, head of house, Head waiter, four housekeepers/servers, office secretary, two technicians, security guard, chauffeur, and three gardeners. There is also a fulltime masseuse on staff who is available for beauty treatments and Hammam gomage for a charge per service.

Moroccan interior

Moroccan interior

The International menu contains pages of mouth-watering recipes to select the meals for the week. Excursions can be coordinated with many choices from local camel riding, exploring the city of Marrakesh, a tour to the Cascades, or visiting the villages in the Atlas. A second larger independent villa with 8 bedrooms located on the same estate is also available for larger groups. (See Riad Marrakesh)

KATHY'S TRAVEL TIPS

Recommended Travel Books and Web Sites

Wow! Summer vacation is almost here! If you're like me, dreaming about that villa you've rented gets more of your time and attention as departure dates approach. What will it be like? What will you choose to see and do? Where will you go on daytrips? Perhaps you're comfortable to "play it by ear" after you get there, but if you're like most of us, you want to do a little homework to enhance your dreaming and your trip.

References

References

We thought it would be helpful to point you in the direction of some resources, both for study in helping you plan ahead, and also to take along as guides. Over the years we have collected many books that offer valuable information to make your travels even more fun and interesting. And of course there's skads of information on the web. Here's a list of some of the guide books we use and recommend when traveling to Europe:

Frommer's has a series of paperback books that give up-to-date travel advice for most any city in the world. For instance, my Rome book gives a detailed map, recommended hotels, an extensive list of rated dining spots, essentials about getting around in Rome with a description of the neighborhoods, suggested walking tours, tips on shopping, what to do in the evening to enjoy performing arts, bars, clubs and such, and much more. Many people take this handy reference in their bag. Take a look at your local bookstore or visit frommers.travelocity.com.

Lonely Planet has a series of language references. These are phrasebooks with two-way dictionaries very easy and handy to use! They're tiny enough to stick in a pocket and most valuable when searching for the right word or translation. They also have travel guidebooks with in-depth coverage of just about any area you wish to know more about. Take a look at www.lonelyplanet.com.

Fodor's is a trusted guidebook. Another publication that is updated annually, you will find similar information to Frommer's. Be sure and get a recent issue.

You're probably familiar with Rick Steves' bestseller Europe Through the Back Door that has encouraged so many to try Europe for the first time. He now publishes thorough take-along guides that are updated every year. So look for Rick Steves' Italy 2006, Rick Steves' Florence and Tuscany 2006, Rick Steves' Paris, Rome, etc. They give a thorough description of each area, an overview, maps, orientation, things to see and do, helpful hints, and even suggested walking tours. Of course he always emphasizing saving your travel dollars. Take a look at www.ricksteves.com.

Michelin's guide books are wonderful. For instance, the Portugal Michelin Green Guide Is "the perfect travel companion : a discerning and up-to-date source of information. Practical and comprehensive, it offers suggestions on what to see and what to do, background on history and cultural heritage. Ideal guides for the independent tourist, The Green Guide explores destinations both near and far. Sights are rated *** "worth a journey", ** "worth a detour" and * "interesting". Maps and itineraries make planning easy, whether visiting the highlights or venturing off the beaten track."

Let me mention that our good friends and former colleagues Paolo and Francesca Tosolini have announced their new eBook Italy From the Inside. Take a look at their new blog and info on the new release, www.italyfromtheinside.com. Should be an excellent insider reference!

Dream on, all you travelers. And let us know how we can help make your dreams come true!

This was a real ad!

The world's newest airline is looking for the world's finest stewards and stewardesses. Applicants must be over 20 years of age, with minimum height of 5'3” and be able to swim.

Newsletter Editor: Kathy Hayes

TRAVELOGUE
The Louvre

Le Louvre

The Louvre

Most people who travel to Europe make sure to stop in Paris. With the present fascination with Dan Brown's novel "The da Vinci Code", many visitors to Europe's capital city want to visit the Louvre, particularly to see Leonardo da Vinci's painting of the Mona Lisa.

The Louvre is the largest museum in the western world. It began in 1200 A.D. as a fortress, became a royal palace in the 16th century, and after the Revolution in 1793 became a public museum. It's been built in stages over 800 years, and construction continues even today. It houses an exhaustive collection of paintings and sculpture. It is open Wednesday through Monday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and closed on Tuesdays.

Fountain at The Louvre

Pool at The Louvre

You will enter the structure at the distinctive 67 ft. tall glass pyramid, designed by the American architect I.M. Pei in 1989. Here you are ushered underground to a central information station where you can purchase maps, hand-held recorded guides in many languages, books, gifts, postcards, and have your questions answered. The routes to the 3 wings are clearly marked and escalators move you to your choice. Since one cannot see and appreciate the Louvre in a single day or even a single week for that matter, I suggest you zero in on what you're most interested in. Otherwise you'll get overloaded before you see your favorites.

The entire museum is U-shaped. The Richelieu wing (north) houses oriental antiquities plus French, Dutch and Northern art. The Sully wing (east) is the original medieval fortress and displays the ancient artifacts from the history of the Louvre. It also features extensive French painting and Egypt collections. The Denon wing displays ancient Greek sculpture, Italian Renaissance painting, and French neoclassical and Romantic painting. Each floor is arranged chronologically and geographically, therefore quite easy to navigate.

There used to be a west wing that was originally a separate palace built by a widowed queen. The Tuileries Palace was eventually joined to the king's palace. But it was burned to the ground in a riot during the Paris Commune of 1871. But the vast gardens created for Louis XIV that adorned it (now Jardin de Tuileries) are still there for our enjoyment. 63 acres of trees, ponds, fountains, and statues give one a pleasant and peaceful place to reflect on the beauty of the Louvre.

Kitty massage

Kitty massage

 

REGIONAL RECIPE

Bacon Wrapped Chicken

6 chicken breasts
12 pieces bacon
2 medium onions
4 cups sour cream
2 cups cream of mushroom soup
1 Tbsp paprika

Roll chicken breasts lengthwise and wrap each with 2 slices of bacon. Tuck into large casserole dish tightly, placing loose ends of bacon underneath. Saute onion and sprinkle on top of chicken. Mix sour cream, soup, and paprika in a separate bowl and pour over the top of the casserole. Cover.

Bake in a 300 degree oven for 3 hours. Remove lid. Bake another half hour before serving over pasta or rice.

Makes 6 generous servings

CLIENT TESTIMONIAL

Palazzo Tritone 3

Palazzo Tritone 3

Palazzo Tritone 3

Rome, Italy

Palazzo Tritone 3 is part of a beautifully renovated palace originally built in the 1400's. The designers carefully brought the building up to the most modern standards without destroying the ancient architectural features of terra cotta floors, wood beamed ceilings, and arched doorways. Lovely fabrics and pastel colors give a particularly restful feel. Located in the historical center of Rome, its remarkable location places you equidistant between the Trevi Fountain and the Spanish Steps, only a short walk from the famous Via Veneto and Piazza Barberini. The area is a favorite for visiting cultural sites, shopping, and visiting numerous renowned restaurants and cafes. Ideal for those who want to live in modern comfort in the very heart of Rome.

"We loved It! Most likely we'll return for Christmas of 2006!"

K.F., Los Angeles, CA

For a little laugh

Recently, I overheard my teenage son on the telephone ordering flowers. Dictating the card to the florist, he said, “To my one and only, I can't wait to see you again.” It was so romantic, it was all I could do to keep from crying. That is, until I heard him say, “And I need to send that to three girls.”

Excerpts from Reader's Digest

FROM THE PRESIDENT

Dear Travelers and Friends,

It's finally time for many of you to pack up and head for that long awaited vacation property. Others are still in the planning stage and I want you to know it's not too late - we still have some good availability. We're running some good specials too! Let us know your desires and we'll make some recommendations.

We're always on the look-out for quality properties in prime locations, and have recently added to our inventory on the Amalfi Coast and Tuscany. This summer we'll go into Provence to add to the list. And because of the increasing demand for Spain, we've decided to visit Barcellona and Southern Spain. We'll keep you posted!

Enjoy your travels!

All the Best,

Emmanuel de Ricard, President

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