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Ventana - An Enchanting Resort in BIg Sur

Summary: I love Ventana. I highly recommend visiting  and exploring the landscape at Lime Kiln and Andrew Molera State Park which I've blogged about here. Please note this is #notsponsored . Yes, that means we paid our own bill! Lots of details in the following review. including a Post Ranch vs Ventana comparison.  Can you tell there's something exciting beyond this beautiful gate? There's something special about Big Sur, a magic in the light, the presence of the Pacific, the cliffs, beaches, redwood forests and the murmur of the surf. It's one of my favorite places in California. I couldn't think of anywhere else I wanted to be to celebrate turning fifty, because it's a place where there's a sense of nature, space and light and a wide horizon. We've been to Big Sur many times and for a celebration there are two fantastic hotels vying for your attention. The exclusive, modern and very private, cliff top Post Ranch Inn and on the other side of the road the …

Paris - Our Flat in The Marais!

So I'm excited to let you know that we've found a place to stay in Paris. We'll be in the heart of everything in the Fourth Arrondissement, the historic Marais. We're across the street from the well known Mariage Freres teashop which I'm looking forward to getting to know, despite the fact that they were tres supercilious on my last visit!



I love the look of the place we've rented and I hope I like it as much on arrival. I wanted a flat that was bright, light and stylish. We'll be in Europe in the heart of the winter and  I'm happy we've found a place on the top floor with larger windows, light from multiple directions and even a skylight. 


So what are the downsides? It's not cheap, we have to walk up five floors, it's not large, the bathroom in particular is tiny and because it's in Paris everyone wants to stay - despite the fact that we only have a fold out couch. I know we should have stayed somewhere less glamorous! However, after a few weeks of talking to ourselves, and suffering withdrawal from all our friends, I know we'll be desperate to see you all!


It's located very centrally which could be both good and bad, by April it may be overrun with foreigners. Initially we intended to rent a place further out, to get a sense of a less touristy  Parisian neighborhood. We were focusing on the 10th Arrondissement near the Canal St. Martin which is certainly a trendy area with a lot of buzz. It's  past the Place de la République, not far from the place we stayed in when we visited Paris last. 

Here's the classic rooftop view from the bedroom, isn't it lovely? Perhaps I'll be spending a lot of time just looking out the window and watching Paris go by.....

Here's my blog post on the flat we rented (and loved) for our short visit the last time we were in Paris, this place is in the Marais outside the tourist madness and closer to the 10th. We loved it for a short visit but it's too small for a longer trip.