Getting to Switzerland is a trek. We left around 6:00 pm and got to Zurich just a couple hours shy of 24 hours later. Part of that was time change, but we also didn’t sleep one wink on the plane. It was hard to when we just kept following the sun. The sun only really went down for about an hour and then we caught back up to it. On the upside, Sean managed to drink quite a bit of the free wine Air Berlin was offering on the flight. And they gave us a cute little package of personal items (toothbrush, sleep mask, socks, earplugs, etc). We left LA when it was 100 degrees and arrived in rainy Zurich in our comfy plane clothes and flip flops. By the time we got to our hotel room at about 5:00, we were BEAT. And wet. And cranky. We wanted to just go straight to bed but our good sense told us to go get something to eat and try to wait it out another hour or so. So we found a cute little place to have our first Swiss dinner and enjoyed it more than I thought we were going to considering how tired we were. We got back to our hotel around 8 and passed out. Until 1:00AM, at which point we were wide awake and ready to start our day. We killed a couple hours playing cards and talking and finally couldn’t lay in bed any longer and got up around 4:30 figuring we’d just get an early start at getting to Lucerne. We stumbled into the strangest 24 hour pizza joint that was basically the only thing open and had, no joke, the best cup of coffee I’ve ever had in my LIFE. In a china glass nonetheless. And the best pasta that I am pretty sure had been on the warmer all night long. But it was delicious! Then we headed back to the train station (which is inside the airport in Zurich) and found our saving grace for the rest of the trip, the Tourism Office. They will help you with anything in there. The people were so nice and friendly (in every city we went to). And its free. So we would just go straight to the tourism office, buy our train or bus tickets and ask a million questions and save ourselves a lot of hassle later. Unfortunately, we didn’t get to see too much of Zurich and despite what we had read, it really seemed like a cool city. Luckily, we got another night there at the very end of the trip and did a little more sightseeing but if we ever went back, I would definitely give Zurich a day or two to explore.
Sean and I spent 3 days in Portland last week eating, and drinking, and exploring the beautiful city. But mostly eating. The food in Portland is EPIC, which is the reason why 75% of these photos are of food and/or taken at a restaurant or brewery. The city is also so beautifully green and has cool little pocketed neighborhoods that each seem different from the next. And the old buildings! Loooved all of the old factory buildings. We came across the coolest street (where Rudy’s Barbershop was located) that was all loading docks on either side of the street for a block or two. I could have spent a whole day just daydreaming about what it must’ve been like back in the day with trucks coming in and out and things being made (what a foreign concept nowadays) inside the adjacent buildings. While we were there, we got to meet up with one of my very first friends who I haven’t seen in like 15+ years since we last visited her and her family in Idaho! So fun and so awesome how little she has changed in so many years.
We stayed at the ACE Hotel on SW Stark Street which was the perfect centrally located hub for walking almost everywhere.
ACE Hotel is also conveniently located adjacent to (there is an entrance in the lobby) to Stumptown Coffee! I was so excited to get to partake in a Stumptown Coffee out of one of their adorable cups straight from the source!
Happy Hours were our thing in Portland. We wouldn’t stop at 1 either. Too many places to try;) The couple pics below are of Saucebox, which was EPIC! I was too engrossed in the food and my delish passion fruit drink to take pictures, hence the empty glass/mostly eaten plate pictures below.
Weird flash pic of the best travel companion ever.
Portland is basically the epicenter of craft brewing and we made it our mission to try as many of the city’s offerings as possible. We very conveniently sat next to Ryan, the “beer guy” from Burnside Brewing at Saucebox and he overheard Sean talking to the bartender about bear and whipped out his business card and a pen and told us which ones to hit up while we were there. Score! Our first night we walked across the Burnside Bridge and had a sampler (Sean) and a glass of wine (me. I know, shameful to have a glass of wine at a brewery right? At least it was a local wine?) and the beer and atmosphere was awesome.
The best bloody mary I’ve ever tried lives at Kenny & Zukes. Comes with a housemade pickle, curry pickled cauliflower, and a pickled green tomato.
Sean ordered the uber-fun “spikey soda” which is basically a soda of your picking and a half full glass of vodka to pour it in. I definitely stole more than 1 sip…
We attempted to go to the infamous VooDoo Donut several times, but each time the line was out the door and we just couldn’t see waiting a half an hour for a donut. Maybe next time!
Sean got a jazzy haircut at the adorable Rudy’s Barbershop. Totally got some inspiration for our house there!
The cutest store ever with the cutest slogan, “camp vibes.”
We had the best ice cream we’ve ever had EVER at Salt & Straw. Words cannot express how good it was! I picked one that was made with coconut milk (so it was vegan on top of being delicious), caramelized pineapple, and cashew brittle.
Rented a jazzy little red Audi from Zip Car one day to cruise around and check out the different neighborhoods.
More food. And drinks.
We came back happy, broke, full and pooped after our 7:00am flight from Portland to San Fran and then the drive from San Fran home.
Sean basically has pictures of everything I don’t so tomorrow I’ll share those and some house pics. TTFN!
This warm weather is making me wanna run away to an amazing beach house and spend a week or two just basking in the sun, eating fresh seafood, and taking lots of naps.
Sunset magazine couldn’t have had better timing with their write-up of this chic boutique hotel in the middle of Bakersfield, as my family and I needed a place to stay for an event in June and without many options, it was pretty much this or the Roadway Inn. The Padre seems to perfectly exemplify what a classy boutique hotel set in the middle of a giant farming town with a history of a little country glitz should be.
Check it out: http://www.thepadrehotel.com/
Last summer I headed to the Ace Hotel in Palm Springs with two of my friends. It was by far the best hotel I have ever stayed in…not necessarily the fanciest or most over-the-top, but the funnest! The little details were incredible, the food was to die for, and the decor was uber chic yet utilitarian at the same time….plus they had alcoholic snowcones! I was even more impressed when I recently emailed the hotel to ask them sources for a few of the items used at the hotel that I fell in love with (herringbone bar towels used as napkins in the Diner & enamelware bowls used to serve ceviche nachos by the pool) and to my surprise received a response back the next day with links to their suppliers. The customer service was truly top notch and I recommend this hip place in the desert to anyone looking to get away.