Searching for a needle in a haystack? Or travel reviews from people just like you?

Just how useful are travel reviews?

July 6th, 2010 in Cruising by Sarah Lee 12

I recently had the chance to sample Norwegian Cruise Lines’ latest ship Epic. I’ve just been reading through a fairly mixed bag of reviews of the ship – some saying it couldn’t be better, others quoting specific bad experiences and personal niggles. It’s made me wonder: how useful are travel reviews and do they say more about us than the hotel/ship/airline we’ve reviewed?

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View from the Sha Wellness Clinic | pic Sha Wellness Clinic

Can a wellness clinic make me a new man?

July 6th, 2010 in European travel by Terry Lee 2

Hands up if you’ve been to my home town – the Midlands’ gem of Nuneaton? If you had you’d know you’re unlikely to find many men open to alternative therapies. When I was invited to the Sha Wellness Clinic, in Valencia, I felt I was a long way from home! The term wellness clinic suggested hallways thick with the smell of disinfectant, medical types in white coats and dormitory beds where lights out was by 9.30pm.

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Spectators await the start as the cars line up

Confessions of an F1 virgin

June 30th, 2010 in European travel by Terry Lee 7

I’m a sports fan and love football and the World Cup, but I confess the F1 has never really sparked my interest. I used to live just seven miles from Silverstone and didn’t attend once. So when I was invited to the European Grand Prix I was amused. I couldn’t be bothered to nip up the road to see it but I’d happily fly all the way to Valencia to catch theirs. Still I’m delighted I did.

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Gekko combines technology with great deals to help source your perfect hotel

Check in with Gekko for hotel deals

April 30th, 2010 in Hotels by Sarah Lee 2

I recently attended a travel bloggers event hosted by Gekko, hotel recommendation engine, and friend of this blog. I was first introduced to Gekko last year and thought it sounded like a good way to find a hotel that’s right up your street. But it’s now added booking partners Expedia, LateRooms, Travel Intelligence and Booking.com to offer up some great rates.

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The Langham's pink and bronze patterned hints were found on centuries old wallpaper uncovered there

Pretty in pink: The Langham’s new look

April 15th, 2010 in Hotels by Sarah Lee 0

When a hotel has an £80m refurbishment you expect it to be something special (god only knows what the £200m Savoy will be like), but The Langham is the first of London’s hotel refurbs to the party. Last night I attended a bloggers’ event held by hotel recommendation site Gekko at The Langham.

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Save your money for your holiday | pic Dreamstime

Ten sites for great travel deals

March 6th, 2010 in Hotels by Sarah Lee 4

As with most things, you have to shop around for the best travel deals. In part because the site that offered you a great price on a hotel in New York last year isn’t necessarily going to come up trumps on the same trip again. Also it’s dependent on where you’re going – some sites are specialist in certain destinations.

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Anti-social hotels can make for a dog's life | Dreamstime.com

Anti-social hotels

March 5th, 2010 in Hotels by Sarah Lee 3

After a late flight into Gatwick airport this week I had a room booked at a Travelodge. I’m not a huge fan of Travelodge hotels – the last one I stayed at in Birmingham was dirty, had a fist-sized hole in the wall of my room and towels my friend described as the luxurious texture of Weetabix. But I’m convinced city centre hotels are often worse than the same brand elsewhere.

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Modern design in the Marriott Grosvenor Square's lobby

Nice hotel, no cigar

February 20th, 2010 in Free wifi campaign by Sarah Lee 1

This week this blog was added to hotel recommendation site Gekko’s list of favourite travel blogs. This is already an esteemed list highlighting some of my favourites such as 501 Places, Europe a la Carte and Traveldudes. Gekko takes details of your favourite places to stay then uses your preferences to recommend a hotel you might like in another city.

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Get switched on at a five star hotel

Five five-star riddles

January 29th, 2010 in Hotels by Sarah Lee 2

So here I am staying in a lovely five star hotel in Tenerife for the BGTW’s AGM. Take a look at La Plantacion del Sur – its very nice. Now before you sit in awe at a slightly spoilt travel journalist spouting about the hardships of staying at a five star hotel, let me say now – this is not a moan. These things are by no means restricted to this hotel, they’re merely five observations of strange features of five star hotels found the world over

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Find hotels with free wifi

Find a free wifi hotel

December 4th, 2009 in Free wifi campaign by Sarah Lee 0

Two weeks ago I posted in support of a growing campaign to see more hotels offer free wifi to guests – you can read that post here. To help people locate a hotel offering guests this basic-level service I started a twitter list. The list is growing and there are a few brands on it, from the exclusive to the budget conscious, offering free wifi across their chain of hotels. Red Carnation, Best Western, Days Inn and City Inn, for example, deserve particular recognition.

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