Friday, December 31, 2010

A new decade, a new era

We're starting the celebration of the new year with a bottle of Spain's finest. We're utterly convinced that this upcoming decade will be the best in our lives and we're sure that goes for all of you. Happy new year to all of our dear readers and have fun tonight wherever you are in the world!! Love from Canaries / Taru and Alex

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Moroccan Hotel Fit for Royalty

When the King—any King--opens a hotel, you don’t exactly expect a Travelodge, Days Inn or Formule 1. Yet even by royal standards, the Royal Mansour is a beauty.

The King in this case is His Majesty the King Mohamed VI of Morocco and the hotel, the Royal Mansour in Marakech, was developed to be one of the world’s finest. It opened in July, with 53 individual riads, three restaurants and a 27,000-

Burning skies

The sky is on fire. We're just about to have dinner with a light wind, some luminescent plankton and a purple-pinkish shimmer around our boat as the only peaceful company tonight. See you tomorrow in Gran Canaria. /T

Video Cabo San Lucas, Mexico

Spectacular views of the beach of Cabo San Lucas in Mexico. Again we saw many Pelicans. One of the best beach locations we have seen.

Spectaculaire stranden van Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. Wederom zagen we veel Pelikanen. Een van de beste strand locaties dat we ooit hebben bezocht.



Previous Mexico article: Video Acapulco beach and the cliff divers

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Las Vegas at night, city of lights

In the morning there are almost no people on the Strip, in the afternoon it can be crowded, but in the evening and at night it is people jam. Sometimes it is so crowded that you can harly walk. Certainly in the areas where they have outside entertainment like at the Bellagio, the Mirage and Treasure Island. The Strip is so bright and all lights create such spectacular views. After a show or dinner, walk to your hotel, it is worth it.

's morgens zijn er bijna geen mensen op de Strip, in de namiddag kan het wat drukker zijn, maar 's avonds staan de mensen te voet in rijen aan te schuiven. Het kan zo druk zijn dat je bijna niet vooruit geraakt. Zeker in de gebieden waar er evenementen voor de hotels zijn is het zeer druk, zoals bij de Bellagio, de Mirage en Treasure Island. De verlichting op de Strip levert veel spectaculaire beelden op. Wij raden aan eens naar je hotel te wandelen na een show of etentje.

Las Vegas at night
Las Vegas at night
Las Vegas at night
Las Vegas at night
Las Vegas at night
Las Vegas at night
Las Vegas at night
Las Vegas at night
Previous Las Vegas article: Golf in Las Vegas, The Wynn

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Updates

When hearing and reading about other peoples Atlantic crossing this year, we are glad that we'll have a late approach for it. The tradewinds were late to establish this year and many of the people we've been in touch with or read about in their blogs, have suffered from seasickness due to poor winds and the rolling of large seas and many seem to have experienced their crossing as a very uncomfortable one. Our original plan was to cross the ocean in early December but as of many unfinished boat projects, we're about one month late to the original schedule. Good like that, and the new plan for the ocean crossing is set to begin after New Year. There are still a couple of things we need to complete on the boat and also a couple of packages to receive and we're scheduling ourselves for a departure towards Martinique on the 10th of January. Let's then all hope for the best and pray for the tradewinds to be working it like they should - and a landfall is wished to be made about 3 weeks thereafter - where we'll be good in time for meeting up a couple of friends on the Caribbean side. Cannot wait for getting started with the crossing, but also we're glad to have made the decision to await for a perfect time to get it all started instead of stressing us through this first part of the tour. By the way, Marina Rubicon where we're staying at the moment has been an excellent stop for us. Peaceful, clean, fresh, great service and good facilities. The price a bit high (23 Euros/night) but over all an excellent marina. We're just about to leave for Gran Canaria and Las Palmas this afternoon where we'll make a quick stop before heading to the Southern parts of that very same island. 

New Year is now due to be celebrated in Gran Canaria, we have no plans whatsoever on how to spend NYE, but I'm sure we'll figure something fun out tomorrow when we arrive. Christmas and New Years celebrations have not been high up on our priority list for this year. But at least we have the fridge full of Champagne for a new years toast. /Taru

Photo from the Atlantic beach of Rabat, Morocco.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Golf in Las Vegas, the Wynn is the place to be

The Wynn was already a luxurious top hotel on the Las Vegas Strip, and now it has a sister hotel The Encore. The Wynn is known for its golf course. This is only possible in the USA or the Middle East, a golf course in the dessert. Typical for the Wynn are the special chandeliers. There were Christmas decorations in gardens. From the entrance to the casino, you pass through a shopping area with excellent boutiques.

De Wynn was reeds een luxueus top hotel op de Strip van Las Vegas en nu heeft het een zuster hotel, de Encore. De Wynn staat bekend voor zijn golfterrein. Zoiets is enkel mogelijk in de VS of het Midden Oosten, een golfterrein in de woestijn. Typisch voor de Wynn zijn de speciale lusters. Er waren kerstversieringen in de tuinen. Van de inkom tot aan het casino wandel je langs vele uitstekende boutiques.

The Wynn Las Vegas
The Wynn Las Vegas
The Wynn Las Vegas
The Wynn Las Vegas
The Wynn Las Vegas
Previous Las Vegas article: M&M store in Las Vegas

Link to the Official Website: The Wynn, Las Vegas

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Cabins and Swedish candy

Some of you were interested in having a look into our cabin .. so this it is. Not very extraordinary but oh so cozy. This is where I'll spend the rest of the night with a movie and candy* as my PMS doesn't allow me to do much else without getting in a bad mood. Good night. /T

* Stina my dear, would you please be so kind to bring some Swedish sweets when you come to visit next time! Everything is finished by now and I would die for some djungelvr√•l, sura nappar, dumle and ahlgrens bilar mmmmm...

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Video of Acapulco beach and the cliff divers

This video gives you some impressions of Acapulco beach and the famous cliff divers. Enjoy it.

Deze video geeft een weergave van Acapulco strand en de beroemde cliff divers. Geniet er van.



Previous Mexico article: Video of our Huatulco visit

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M&M store in Las Vegas, Concept Marketing

The M&M store in Las Vegas is an ideal example for concept marketing. The shop is crowded and people buy. The classic M&Ms, T-shirts, cups, toys, games,... are some of the items you can get here. It is hard to leave the store empty hands with children. We became interested in this store because we saw so many people on the Strip carrying M&M bags.

De M&M store in Las Vegas is een ideaal voorbeeld van concept marketing. De winkel is druk bezocht en de mensen kopen. De klassieke M&Ms, T-shirts, kopjes, speelgoed, spelletjes,... zijn enkele zaken die je hier vindt. Met kinderen is het is moeilijk de winkel te verlaten zonder iets te kopen. Onze interesse werd gewekt door het zien van vele mensen op de Strip die een M&M zakje mee hadden.

M&M store Las Vegas
M&M store Las Vegas
M&M store Las Vegas
M&M store Las Vegas
M&M store Las Vegas
M&M store Las Vegas
M&M store Las Vegas
Previous Las Vegas article: Venice in Las Vegas, The Venetian

Link to the Official Website: M&M merchandise

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Monday, December 27, 2010

Venice in Las Vegas, The Venetian Hotel

All the Americans who don't want to fly to Italy can also enjoy a gondola canal tour in Las Vegas. The hotel has a tower like on the San Marco square. The interior is very classical and the main entrance looks like a palace. This is one of the top quality hotels of Las Vegas. During our holiday in Vegas we went to the "Phantom of the Opera" musical in the hotel. It is expensive but worth every dollar. The singers are top performers and the decors out of this world.

Alle Amerikanen die niet naar Italie willen vliegen kunnen hier ook genieten van een gondel tochtje in Las Vegas. Het Hotel heeft een toren net als op het San Marco plein. Het interieur is zeer klassiek en de hoofdingang lijkt op een paleis. Dit is een van de top kwaliteit hotels in Vegas. Tijdens onze vakantie hebben we ook in dit hotel naar de "Phantom of the Opera" musical gaan zien. Het was duur maar toch zijn geld waard. De zangers zijn uitstekend en de decors onbeschrijflijk.

The Venetian Las Vegas
The Venetian Las Vegas
The Venetian Las Vegas
Previous Las Vegas article: Our favourite hotel in Las Vegas, Bellagio

Link to the Official Website: The Venetian, Las Vegas

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Surf in Lanzarote

I have always known how important surfing was to Alex for about 15 years ago or so. When he was a surf teacher on the French Atlantic coast and when he was traveling the world from Mexico to South Africa to Angola and Bali, Portugal and the coasts of Morocco in search for the best waves, but I have not really seen it in action - and as it was such a distant image for me, I haven't really seen him, nor could I really picture him, as the surfer he obviously once was - even though I've seen some old photos of it. He's been mumbling about getting that board in the water once we get to warmer waters like the Pacific or such, while at the same time I have felt that he's been worried for being a bit too old and rusty - so with time I have also somehow thought that yeah, he probably is a bit too old and rusty to get it going on the big rolls. But so today I finally got to see him working that board for real for the first time in my life and while sitting some hundred meters away, prepared with my tele-objective, I could slowly start to realize the deep importance the surfing have had on him - and obviously still does in a nostalgic, deep way and I felt such strength of seeing him excellently maneuvering the board after such long time. Obviously a lot more stiff than I can imagine him working it in his 20's, but still he had the flow. 

For some odd reason I even almost started to cry for fucks sake, when I saw him taking off on a two meters left. Two meters (6,5 foot) is really nothing when it comes to serious surfing but it did made me proud to see my handsome man making some action after such long time. Is that the second you know that you never loved anyone higher - when you're almost 30 and you begin to cry when watching the love of your life doing something he really loves from the bottom of his heart or is that just a sign of that human beings (me) gets more pathetic with age? Seriously. Either way I had an amazing time watching the show and Alex was obviously really happy to have found himself some good waves again. Can't wait to learn this sport myself and I'm glad I have the perfect teacher for it.

Also I definitely need to get a good waterproof camera/video cam so that I can shoot better pics and videos of Alex (and maybe even me!) surfing on our tour around the world. This is something we cannot miss out on I'm telling you.
/Taru

After-Holiday Sale, New Years at Estoublon

Holiday decor is now 50% off and clothing is discounted 30% at the Christmas Market at the Chateau d’Estoublon, a magnificent 16th-century estate near Fontvieille where wines and olive oils are produced. This is the one market my friends and I never miss; each year the selection of food, decor, toys and tableware grows more elegant, eclectic and whimsical too. The items for sale come from all

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Our favourite hotel in Las Vegas, The Bellagio

Our favourite hotel on the Strip is the Bellagio. The interior is fabulous and we like the Fountain shows. The hotel is member of Leading Hotels Of The World and this gives you an assurance of quality. When we are there, we always go the dinner buffet. This is also the hotel that hosts the Big Game. The minimum buy in is 80,000$. Most players buy in for more than 200,000$. We like poker but this is not for us mortals.

Ons favoriete hotel op de Strip is de Bellagio. Het interieur is fabelachtig en we houden van de fontein shows. Het hotel is lid van de Leading Hotels of the World and dit geeft u de garantie van kwaliteit. Als we in Vegas zijn, gaan we altijd naar het avond buffet in de Bellagio. Dit is ook het hotel dat gastheer is voor The Big Game. De minimum inzet is 80.000$ maar de meeste spelers starten met meer dan 200,000$. We houden van poker maar dit is niet voor stervelingen zoals wij.

Bellagio Hotel Las Vegas
Bellagio Hotel Las Vegas
Bellagio Hotel Las Vegas
Bellagio Hotel Las Vegas
Bellagio Hotel Las Vegas
Previous Las Vegas article: Staying in a fairytale castle, Excalibur, Las Vegas

Link to the Official Website: Bellagio, Las Vegas

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Safety equipment part 1

What was that fashionable bracelet I had on the last picture, you might ask. So I'll tell you: It is actually not a thing with a fashionable purpose, more with a surviving one. This wrist transmitter from Navicom is connected to our radio which is connected to our GPS/Chart plotter and in case any of us would fall overboard, this will transmit a distress signal to the radio and GPS. This armband is for us a necessity during night watches, as it will awake the person sleeping if the one of us two on night watch would fall out of the boat. Obviously we will in every way possible avoid falling overboard in the first place (life vest attached to lifelines) - but would it somehow happen - this armband will immediately send out a high sounding distress alarm awakening every living person onboard and at the same time indicate on our chartplotter exactly where the person fell out and we will have a higher chance of finding the person in the water. One of those security things we find invaluable for our trip on the seven seas. /T

Video of our Huatulco visit, Mexico

Huatulco is a small city that works on tourist development, the coastline is rough and the town church very picturesque.

Huatulco is een klein stadje dat werkt aan toerisme, de kustlijn is ruw en de kerk is zeer aantrekkelijk.



Previous Huatulco article: La Crucecita catholic church, Huatulco

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Staying in a fairytale castle, Excalibur Hotel, Las Vegas

After long deliberation, we decided to stay in the Excalibur hotel on the Strip. We selected a cheap hotel because we enjoy playing poker tournaments and the entry fees were low here. The top hotels have higher buy-ins. We play for fun and this disappears when the stakes are too high. Our room, a Spa suite was nice: it had a widescreen TV and jacuzzi. The only negative point was the single glassed windows which resulted in noise from the street, even on floor 24. It was good but next time we will go for a newer hotel.

Na lang twijfelen, beslissen we te logeren in het Excalibur hotel op de Strip. We kozen voor een goedkoop hotel daar we graag een poker tornooitje spelen. Hier was het inschrijfgeld veel lager dan bij de top hotels. Voor ons is poker voor het plezier en dat verdwijnt als de inzet te hoog wordt. Onze kamer, een Spa suite was mooi met een groot plasma scherm en Jacuzzi. Het enige negatieve was het enkel glas waardoor je lawaai hoorde van op straat, 24 verdiepingen lager. Het was goed maar de volgende keer kiezen we toch voor een nieuwer hotel.

Excalibur Hotel Las Vegas
Excalibur Hotel Las Vegas
Excalibur Hotel Las Vegas
Excalibur Hotel Las Vegas
Previous Las Vegas article: Legends in Concert, Las Vegas

Link to the Official Website: Excalibur Hotel, Las Vegas

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Saturday, December 25, 2010

Legends in Concert at Harrahs, Las Vegas

A friend in Las Vegas took us to the Legends in Concert show at Harrahs. At first we were a bit sceptical and our expectations were rather low. Totally unjustified, the show was very professional and the artists, well they all were great. Each show features different artists, in our show we saw: Elvis (Matt Lewis), Tom Jones (Steve McCoy), Elton John (Mitch Adams), Aretha Franklin (Denita Asberry) and Tim McGraw (Chad Givens). Most shows in Vegas are very expensive but this one has a fair price. Don't doubt, we are sure you will enjoy it.

Een vriend in Las Vegas nam ons mee naar the Legends in Concert show in het Harrahs hotel. Eerst waren we wat sceptisch en de verwachtingen lagen een beetje laag. Dit was totaal onterecht, de show was zeer professioneel en de artiesten uitstekend. Iedere show heeft verschillende artiesten, in onze voorstelling zagen we: Elvis (Matt Lewis), Tom Jones (Steve McCoy), Elton John (Mitch Adams), Aretha Franklin (Denita Asberry) and Tim McGraw (Chad Givens). De meeste shows in Las Vegas zijn zeer duur maar deze was correct geprijsd. Twijfel niet, we zijn er zeker van dat je het top zal vinden.




Previous Las Vegas article: Old Egypt in the Luxor, Las Vegas

Link to the Official Website: Legends in Concert

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Lanzarote!

We had a peaceful Christmas night on the sea with 20-25 knots of wind coming from the NW, right on the beam. 240 nm was quickly done in 39 hours. This is how it looked when arriving to the islands this morning- It is so hot over here, one could almost mistake these islands to be Caribbean ones. Sorry for the bitchy-early-morning-look on my face but that's how it goes when trying to avoid getting too much sun in the eyes while balancing with a bony ass trying not to fall over board and at the same time dying for getting back into the cockpit to enjoy Christmas breakfast with my baby.

Anyway, now we're finally here! I'll speak to you later. /T