2014 Favorites – Hotel

There is a difference between “Best” hotel and FAVORITE hotel.. Sometimes they are the same, but in my case, they are not..

The best hotel we stayed in was, by far, the Grand Hotel Continental ... This is a 5 star luxury hotel in Bucharest.. Beautiful building, wonderful staff, great breakfast, awesome service and the room was very nearly opulent..Of course, for the first time in my travels, I reserved a suite and the experience was such that I will do that again.. at least once a year…somewhere..lol

But my favorite hotel this year was, and still is, The Charles Bridge Palace in Prague.. Situated just a short walk from the historic Old Town and over-looking the Vltava River, it is in a perfect spot for visiting the city..

The rooms are spacious, well appointed and have wonderful views of the city…

Prague West 2

 

The staff is courteous, friendly and very helpful with anything you might need.. The metro station is 5 minutes away and a trolley stops 50 meters from the hotel..

Prague is a wonderful city anyway..and when you couple it with a stay at the Charles Bridge Palace, it becomes damn near magical..

Happy Travels!

Photography as Art                        Fine Art America

Shot for the Day – A little Weird Art

Now I don’t generally believe in digital manipulation.. I use post processing as little as humanly possible..  I think a lot of people tend to overdo it..Only my opinion so please don’t take offense anyone..

I remember when HDR was new and exciting.. I experimented.. I overdid .. the infrared came along.. I experimented..  lately I have been experimenting with contour painting..

Andrew's(Pr)

My first love is still panoramic shots.. followed by doors, windows… everyday stuff that I see while I explore this wonderful world.. But …

Prague - Charles BridgeCWThese are kind of fun.. just a new way of looking at things..

These prints can be found here at Fine Art America

Happy Travels!!

Photography as Art                     Travel with Steve

 

 

Prague – Shot of the Day

City View

                                            City View – Prague

299 steps to the top of the Petrin View Tower, and you are rewarded with magnificient views of Prague below.  The tower is a 60 meter high replica of the Eiffel Tower located at the top of Petrin Hill.  It can be reached by funicular or, better yet, a leisurely walk through the beautiful park.

Prague – Arrival

DSC_0017

Arrival at the airport in Prague was anti-climactic.. If you are looking for stories of long lines, disgruntled passengers and lost luggage, this is not the place.  Everything was wonderful. From luggage retrieval to speedy processing through customs, it could not have gone better..  Maybe because it was Thursday …

I placed an order for an airport transfer from PAT (Prague Airport Transfers) when I first booked the trip so as I entered the greeting area, I was searching for the orange card with my name on it.  Ok.. my driver might have been colorblind because the card was yellow..But he was there.. took my bag and led me to the E-Class Mercedes to take me to my hotel.

City View

City View

During the 1/2 hour trip from the airport. Pavel pointed out the various areas of town and sights that I had to see while I was there.  Monasteries, churches, museums, bridges, statues, parks –  it seemed he knew more sights in Prague than the guide books. I highly recommend their service. It was wonderful and personal and cost less than the average taxi fare with less chance of getting ripped off because you’re a “tourist”.

I chose the Charles Bridge Palace  hotel near the river and the Charles Bridge because of the central location. It was a wonderful choice. The service and front desk were friendly and helpful. The room was heavenly and the breakfast was the best I have had in Europe..Let me clarify that..the best I have had at a hotel in Europe.. The biggest problem was the wifi.. it did not work everywhere in the hotel as promised. I wound up in the hotel lobby to post photos on Facebook.  Of course, I used Booking.com  (the link can be found on my website  Travel with Steve  ) to reserve my room and save a little money off their standard rates.. Follow the link and so can you

Across the River

Across the River

After I unpacked, I got the camera gear and merged into the massive throng of tourists headed to the Charles Bridge.  The Charles Bridge is a landmark historic bridge that crosses the Vltava river in Prague, Czech Republic. Its construction started in 1357 under during the reign of King Charles IV. It is over 600 m long and almost 10 m wide. It is guarded by 30 statues (15 to a side) and 3 guard towers.

Charles Bridge Statues

Exploring the west side of the river tomorrow..Stay tuned..

Getting Lost in Prague

I am headed to Prague in the Czech Republic. It is only short adventure of 4 days which limits luggage to a carry-on, camera bag and tripod. I have heard about the extraordinary beauty of this city and am excited that I will experience first hand.

Boryspil airport is the starting point, as it has been for most of the trips into Europe. Security and passport control cleared… boarding pass in hand and off to the plane. It is a little strange riding a bus across the tarmac instead of walking from the terminal into the plane. but that’s the way it’s done here, so, as the saying goes, “When in Rome…”

Prague is 2 hours and 10 minutes in the air from Kiev. Enough time to relax, have a nice lunch and look into the exploration of a new city. I usually have a plan and can do my “lightning tour” in 3 days.  Hop-on / Hop-off buses are one of the great ways to take in all the touristy places…the must see stops in a new city.  Of course, they don’t allow you to mix and mingle with locals in the little hidden gems that are often overlooked.

The second and third days and nights are spent wandering, exploring and photographing – Alleyways, side streets and other places off the beaten path in a search for the perfect panoramic city view or nighttime shot. Unusual buildings, windows and doors (my personal favs), and other shots to join my growing Weird Art and Travel Photos collections are mostly found during this time.

There is an excitement in exploration.. in getting lost in a new place… I’m excited so come…

Let’s get lost in Prague.

Travel with Steve