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Category: Canada

Halifax’s North Atlantic Panache

The beguiling charm of Halifax, Nova Scotia, is bound to lure you in. The historic city, located on the salty shores of the Atlantic Ocean is surrounded by one of the largest harbors in the world. The three-kilometer boardwalk along the harbor passes tall ships reflective of a bygone era. Don’t be surprised if you hear the sound of foot stomping and fiddle playing in the distance; a staple of the maritime culture and Nova Scotia’s long ties to Scotland. The aroma of a fisherman’s feast permeates the air along the boardwalk. Meander past food kiosks serving up fresh oysters,...

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Culinary Splendor in Charlottetown

Canada’s Prince Edward Island has long been touted as “the gentle island”. With its small rolling hills, verdant potato fields and pastoral vibe, it’s a place that makes you want to linger lazily and watch the purple hue of the evening sky unfold. The capital city of Charlottetown is where the birth of the Canadian nation evolved one hundred and fifty years ago. This small idyllic city is on the edge of a bustling harbour. The tree-lined streets invite you to meander. The grand old Victorian homes and colonial buildings provide a sense of old world charm. The location...

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Luxe Layovers: YVR

Luxe Layovers: YVR Remember the days when the thought of an airport layover brought shudders and a sense of dread? Today’s airports are breaking out of that mold — and breaking all the old rules — to offer bespoke services to modern travelers. From luxury lounges, modern spas and art museums, to wine bars, gourmet restaurants and markets filled with fresh produce, airports around the world are revolutionizing the travel experience. Discover a new place each month for your next luxe layover. Vancouver International Airport, Canada: YVR Vancouver International Airport sits on Sea Island, an island on the Fraser River...

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Home Sweet Hip Home in Vancouver’s Yaletown

“We don’t do beige.” It’s a mantra of sorts at Opus Vancouver. What does it mean? You’ll understand as soon as you enter the compact, yet sparkling lobby. It has a glow about it. Color is king here. Hip easily translates to happy. Forget about everything you’ve come to expect from a hotel. It doesn’t take long to get the sense they’re re-inventing the rules of hospitality at this boutique Yaletown hotel. It’s also pretty obvious the folks that work here are having a whole lot of fun in the process. The hotel is designed to feel like home,...

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Heed Yukon’s Call of the Wild — Even in the Dead of Winter!

As a travel writer who specializes in luxury girlfriend getaways based around Michelin meals, five-star resorts, signature spa treatments and other non-essential indulgences, extreme travel might consist of sipping champagne out of a plastic flute, being forced to use powdered cream packets for my coffee or receiving only intermittent Wi-Fi. So I was, to say the least, a bit wary when I received an invitation to join a group of journalists (most of them were from Canada and accustomed to the cold weather) to experience “Winter in The Yukon”, especially The Yukon Quest, aka “the world’s hardest sled-dog race.”...

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Sleeping on Ice in Quebec City

The New Year has arrived and along with it a list of resolutions. It’s brought a serious dose of winter reality to many locales. Living in snow and ice is one thing, but playing in it has a completely different effect on the psyche. Ice and snow have a brighter, almost cheerful side, but when you’re cold, it’s just sometimes hard to see. When used as the building blocks to create an ice hotel, that sparkle is hard to miss. But is that sparkle enough to keep you warm at night? One of a Kind Adventure A night at...

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The Rocky Mountaineer: A Train to the Sublime

Sometimes a train trip is more than transportation from Point A to Point B. My journey from Banff to Vancouver on the Rocky Mountaineer’s westbound route was be a sublime 594-mile traverse – all in daylight – across Canada’s majestic Rocky Mountains. Prior to the train adventure, I stayed, as many passengers do, at the baronial Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel, known as “The Castle in the Rockies.” The hotel was built in a spectacular Rocky Mountain setting between the spring of 1887 and the spring of 1888 by the Canadian Pacific Railway. Over the years, it has been expanded,...

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The Cooking Ladies A Dynamic Duo

Have you ever thought what it would be like to travel the world and see it all from behind the wheel of an RV? It can be done, and done in style. In February 2012, I had the pleasure of being introduced to The Cooking Ladies, Phyllis Hinz and Lamont Mackay, while in Las Vegas, at an International Food, Wine and Travel Writers conference. I was there as a speaker and my presentation was on the subject of independent publishing, and was pleasantly surprised to meet two well-established authors, The Cooking Ladies. They are a dynamic writing and photography...

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Chef Chris Chafe At The Doctor’s House Inn And Spa, Newfoundland

To sample some of Newfoundland’s best food requires a one hour scenic drive  (take note of the “Beware of Moose Crossing” signs) from St. John’s to the luxurious Doctor’s House Inn and Spa, tucked away in idyllic Greens Harbour, pop. 850. Then, tucked further away, most likely in the the kitchen or the greenhouse, you’ll find Chef Chris Chafe, the crown jewel of my bedazzling visit. Between his good looks, charisma, strong work ethic and an abundance of talent, Chafe has certainly been on the fast track. First, he was the youngest executive chef ever hired in St. John’s,...

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Discover Canada’s Unknown Gem: The Gaspé Peninsula

As a travel writer, I’m thrilled when I discover a hidden gem – a lesser known destination where tourists can immerse themselves in an authentic experience. In fact, I feel compelled to share such a find. However, I write with trepidation because exposing the location can bring more visitors. If the destination then becomes crowded and commercialized, the experience loses what was real and special in the beginning. Let’s hope that doesn’t happen to Canada’s Gaspé Peninsula, because it is a stunning jewel.  To find the hidden gem, head north toward a mountainous strip of land, including an extension of...

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Executive Chef Milton Rebello, Regina, Canada’s First Gold Medal Plate Winner

A couple of weeks ago I was invited to join a handful of other journalists to train with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police at the RCMP Academy in Regina. A once in a lifetime opportunity, this was one of the hardest 24 hours of my life. However, the pain quickly faded since our valiant efforts were rewarded with a stay at the historic Hotel Saskatchewan Radisson Plaza, one of Canada’s grand railway hotels. My corner suite was bigger (and certainly more lavish) than my apartment at home, but the highpoint of my stay was meeting their remarkable Executive Chef,...

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My New Found Travel Love Is Newfoundland, Canada, Part I

9 Reasons Why My New Found Travel Love is Newfoundland, Canada, part one: St. John’s When people find out I’m a travel writer, they invariably ask me what my favorite place is. I usually answer, “That depends on what I’m in the mood for. My favorite exotic place would be Papua, New Guinea; favorite country might be Turkey; favorite city is Buenos Aires. But the minute I returned from my last trip, Kauai, which had been holding firm as my favorite island for ages,  got kicked to the curb by my new found love, Newfoundland. Before my trip: My...

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