Accommodations We Love – Part 3by ExperiencePlus! - Tuesday, November 15, 2011
In the Chilean hills with an expanse of vineyards in view sits Tabonko, a wine estate with rustic guest houses, which serves as the last stop on our 11-day Plus! the Pacific Coast. The owners strive to integrate nature with the art of winemaking and immerse the guests in this unique and beautiful spot. After a tour of the vineyard and visit to the cellars, you can anticipate a fabulous meal that combines world-class cuisine with fine wines pressed and aged right on the property. Spend the evening in the Jacuzzi or continue to wander the grounds; you may see an alpaca on your stroll. There’s no better way to end a tour through wine country than dine and rest at an exclusive and elegant vineyard!
When you roll into Dinkelsbühl on day four of Bavaria’s Back Roads tour in Germany, you’ll see a slew of buildings in the town with slats of wood arranged in patterns on their facades. If you look closely, you’ll see that some of the wood is carved, ornamental, and detailed with the careful hand of a Renaissance artist. The half-timbered façade of our hotel tonight is considered exceptional, but the delights don’t stop at the front door. When you walk into Hotel Deutsches Haus, a former nobleman’s home from 1440, you’ll appreciate how the Kellerbauer family, hotel owners, has preserved a balance of antique furniture with modern amenities. Relax in this elegant place and take in the warmth this family hopes to share with you as an honored guest.
This pazo, a traditional countryside manor house, on a Spanish hill will be your resting place for one night as you travel along the Camino. Intimate and personal, there are only nine bedrooms, terrace, and a reading room just in case you’ve exhausted your reading materials by this time in the trip. On the property, there is a preserved barn, loft, and chapel altarpiece from Santiago, and a garden. The owners of the house strive to attend to every detail so that your experience at Pazo de Andeade is unforgettable. Here, you can enjoy nature, and the silence and beauty of rural Spain before your trip on the Camino de Santiago comes to an end. The building is reminiscent of typical Galician architectural style (which is a combination of granite and slate traditionally forming a structure with a thatched roof). Matching the region, the fare at the dinner table could range from a spread of seafood and locally-sourced meats, empanadas, wine, potatoes, and perhaps an octopus or two.
Art hotels have been growing in popularity, and we thought it would be nice to give you a chance to stay in one right along the Danube at the end of the tour in Budapest! The Art’Otel features hundreds of original pieces by American contemporary artist Donald Sultan, and is located in the city center just minutes from Buda Castle and the shopping market. For those who appreciate minimalistic artwork, the rooms and hotel was designed by Sultan, who chose gray colors with red accents to augment the artwork in the building and tie the decorations together for an unforgettable aesthetic experience. On a tour around the building, you’ll see Sultan’s development as an artist using mediums of photography, paint, mixed media, and interior design; it’s a museum and a hotel wrapped in one!
At Chez Jean, each room is decorated in quintessential Alsatian style, which you’ll come to associate with the great memories of your cycling trip through the vineyards of northeastern France. Come back after your ride and relax on the terrace or in the hotel’s lounge. The hotel is just one street off the Marne au Rhin canal in Saverne, and is a five-minute walk to the well-known Rohan Castle, so if you’d like to explore instead, you’re in an ideal location! The castle’s front and canal-side park is marvelous, and the city’s museum is located within the castle if you would like to see artifacts from Celtic and Roman times and read up on history of the region. For those interested in beautiful and fragrant flowers, Saverne also has a spectacular rose garden with over 550 different species that is the second largest garden of its type in France.
On day 8 of the Cycling Southern Italy Plus! the Ionian Seaside tour, you’ll come upon Masseria Bosco, where you can take in the Italian landscape high above the Adriatic Sea. This hotel reflects the typical architecture of the Puglia region; a masseria is a fortified farmhouse, usually located on a large piece of land that once existed as a vast estate. Our hotel’s buildings were probably constructed in the early 17 century, enduring several updates and revisions as the centuries progressed. Over its existence the estate served as a school that provided free education for poor children, a farm, and a home for Piarist monks, farm workers, and noblemen. As you stroll around the courtyard, enjoy a cool drink on one of its many terraces or by the gorgeous pool, the rich history of this place will be palpable. For dinner, you’ll sit down to a homemade meal with handmade pasta and regional specialties, meat cooked on olive tree grilling planks, olive oil from the groves that you rode through earlier, and rounded out with a tasty wine. Make yourself at home in this grand estate, and the best part about it is you don’t have to worry about cooking or cleaning!