Wednesday, September 21, 2022

Swiss Air Business Class Review


We traveled in business class on Swiss Air Flight 9 from Chicago O'Hare to Zurich. We booked discounted cruise fares because we were taking a Rhine river cruise.

One perk of flying International Business Class on a United partner is access to the United Polaris at Chicago O'Hare. The lounge is located near C18.  Take a peek: https://youtube.com/shorts/sGSUVQ1PGZA?feature=share


Overall the lounge is very nice. I appreciate how they try to protect personal space. All the bathrooms are individual. The seating is spread out. Showers are availability. A large bar offers many premium cocktails, wine, and spirits. 
The Dining Room is a small space that seems to be an after thought. You can order from a menu. The food was decent. The service was friendly, but a tad slow. My only other experience with this type of lounge is the Maple Leaf Lounge in Toronto. That is far superior. The Maple Leaf Lounge included restaurant was an intentional space with a coat and luggage storage room. The menu was larger and the service was impeccable. 

The United Polaris Lounge offers a buffet with soup, salad, hot entree items, and cold appetizers. The buffet had servers available making sure the food area was clean and well stocked. I appreciated that.

One big issue with flying with a partner airline is Terminal 5 (imagine ominous music here).  To get to Terminal 5, you have to exit the secured area, board a tram, and then pass through security again. United recommends leaving an hour and a half for that process. 

We met my parents at gate C3. We left gate C3 at 4:47 pm. We were at Terminal 5 and through security by 5:30 pm. 

Swiss Air Business Class also includes access to the Swissport lounge. Outside the lounge, a sign stated the lounge was at capacity. In small print under it, it said space was reserved for airline guests. We entered. It's a simple lounge with packaged snacks, pre-made sandwiches, and a serve yourself bar with beer, wine and spirits. Terminal 5 is crowded so it was nice to have a place to sit. 

We left the lounge around 6 pm for out 7:10 pm flight. It was a bit of a walk to M25. We had to go to the desk for a passport check. We waited about 15 minutes until boarding. 

The flight left on time. Take a quick tour of my experience: https://youtu.be/nZOE0FXjlME

We chose 4K and 5K. These are the first seats in the Business section. They are solo seats. A warning about A and B: A does not have easy aisle access. You'd have to crawl over the person in seat B. 

Prior to take off, the flight attendant collected our dinner and breakfast orders. For dinner, we had a choice of appetizer and main. 

7:49 pm Dinner service began. The tray table is a little tricky. Don't worry about asking for help. 

8 pm Dinner was served. I compare it to domestic first class. I liked the gnocchi. I liked all the vegetables. I also liked the cheese plate.  Two types of white wine and three types of red wine were available. 

A wine and water refill was offered. 

8:24 pm Dinner was clearer for those who were finished. 

8:32 pm Dessert was offered. It was cheesecake. I passed. I ordered a mint tea. The flight attendant ordered it via a tablet. It came quickly and freshly made to order. 

8:45 pm Dessert was cleared for those finished. 

I moved the seat to lie flat. It was very comfortable. The seat came with a pillow and a blanket. I'm 6 feet tall and the bed was long enough. I was also able to sleep comfortably on my side. 

About 120 minutes before landing, a blue light came on overhead. 

80 minutes prior to landing - My pre-ordered breakfast was served. I love that I could pre-order espresso. 

Everything was cleared by 40 minutes before landing. 

It's a very scenic landing. 

We landed at 10:33 am local time. 

We reached passport control at 11:00 am with a brief stop at the bathroom.

We were through passport control by 11:25 am. We picked the slow line. We could have been through about 12 minutes faster in at least two other lines.

Our luggage was off the carousel and waiting for us. 

Our transfer was waiting. We were on the way to the hotel by 11:29 am. 

Wednesday, August 3, 2022

Things to Do in Cape Cod : Provincetown

 


After our time in Vermont and Boston, we headed to Provincetown on Cape Cad. The only thing I knew about Cape Cod was from the movie Splash so I was excited to check it out. The easiest way to get there from Boston is the fast ferry. 

Click here for a map of the places we visited. 

Sunday, July 31, 2022

Things to Do in Boston

 


This post may include affiliate links. 

After a great week and a half in Vermont, we joined my family Boston. 

Our hotel: We chose Hilton Boston Downtown because it's close to everything we have scheduled and you could book connecting rooms. This was really important to my sister's family.   My family arrived. We chose Mr. Dooley's for dinner right next door to get the Boston Irish Pub experience.

 

Monday, July 25, 2022

Things to Do in Vermont

 



The video is a summary of our trip. You can see a Google Map highlighting all the locations by clicking here. 

Some of the links may be affiliate links. 



To begin our Vermont trip, we flew into Boston, Massachusetts. We decided to fly into Boston because it offered a nonstop flight from Tampa and we had more rental car options.

Tuesday, March 15, 2022

Client Review: Breathless Punta Cana

 




Hi Angie, 

Our vacation was wonderful. The resort was perfect for us because it had plenty for our 25 year old boys at night. 



My husband and I too found plenty to keep us happy. The night life there was better suited for the 30-40 crowd. The beach was beautiful, lots of places to sit, clean beach, no seaweed, and food, drinks and bathrooms were all nearby. 




The resort was so well run. The Staff was very accommodating and friendly. Having the concierge came in handy quite a few times. The Xhale upgrade did not disappoint. 



We did an excursion with the speed boats called Sailing Splash. I highly recommend it. We had a catamaran ride, rode speedboats, swam and snorkeled with sharks and sting rays, drank and danced, jumped off the boat and drank in the water, and had a sit down meal consisting of grilled chicken, rice and salad. 



The only downside was that both boys got ill around day 4-5 with stomach issues. Not sure why but it did affect the rest of the trip for them. My husband and I were fine. 

I cannot thank you and Kate enough for your services! 

You gave personalized attention from the moment we contacted you. This was a very special trip for us since it may be our last as a family. Thanks again,

Barb

Take a peek at the Trips with Angie resort tour to learn about this resort. 



Tuesday, March 8, 2022

Best Cozumel All inclusive Resorts



Cozumel is an island off the west coast of Mexico. You can fly directly into Cozumel or take the ferry from Playa del Carmen. Cozumel is known for great snorkeling and diving. The island has a rugged east side with a rocky coast. 

Here are the four all inclusive resorts I recommend with a special fifth recommendation for those who make it all the way to the end. 



Wednesday, March 2, 2022

Seattle Washington Excursions

 



If your Alaska cruise doesn’t start or end in Vancouver, likely you are starting or finishing your cruise vacation from Seattle, WA. This city is famous for Starbucks, grunge music, the Space Needle, and Pike Place Market. It's home to several giants of the technology industry including Amazon and Microsoft, and it is also a beautiful area to just simply enjoy the outdoors. Check out some amazing ways to explore the city and its surrounding areas.