Author: Karen Catchpole

High Tea and Original Frescoes

Inside Casa Gangotena, The Best Hotel in Ecuador Guests checking into Casa Gangotena in Quito, Ecuador are welcomed with a glass of jugo de vida, the juice of life. It’s made with 20 different herbs and even after an international flight and the rigors of landing in a city at more than 9,000 feet, the juice is refreshing enough to bring you back to life. Opened in 2011, the hotel is the result of a five-year renovation which transformed the Art Nouveau and Art Deco home of the Gangotena family into the best hotel in Ecuador, full of original details...

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Galapagos Islands Dive Boat Luxury

During a shark-filled week on a live aboard dive boat in the Galapagos Islands, the luxuries are less about boosting thread count and more about boosting your pulse rate. The captain and crew of the M/V Galapagos Sky live aboard dive boat were wasting no time. As soon as her 16 passengers, from Hong Kong, Austria, Switzerland, Ecuador and the United States were settled on board we were underway—headed to the far northern reaches of the Galapagos Islands, where mega currents attract schools of hammerhead sharks so dense they block out the sun. Whale sharks the size of 18-wheelers appear...

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Gold Standard at the B.O.G. Hotel in Bogota, Colombia

Bogota is the business capital of Colombia and most of the top end hotels in this cosmopolitan city are very much business oriented. Style and design come as afterthoughts. For the leisure traveler in Bogota, finding a true boutique star was difficult. Then came B.O.G Hotel. Dedicated to design Opened in 2012, the B.O.G. (as locals call it) was the first Design Hotels group member in Colombia and the only one in Bogota. It earned that distinction by being dedicated to design no matter how long it took to achieve. The owners hoped to have the B.O.G. up and running in...

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