Thursday, 28 April 2016

Radisson Blu 1919: Iceland and the Aurora

Radisson Blu 1919

One of the best options in Reykjavik (for Winter)

Stayed Jan 2016
Published Apr 2016



Finally I reached my most important destination for this trip.

The great Viking settlement known as ICELAND!


Credit: Great Circle Mapper

Using the Great Circle Mapper, I had flown 8242 miles from Singapore's Changi Airport to Iceland's Keflavik Airport.

Why did I want to come to Iceland?

I hoped to catch the Aurora Borealis this year and also to experience the famous Blue Lagoon.

Wednesday, 27 April 2016

Radisson Blu Plaza Oslo: Good location, and a dirty cloth

Radisson Blu Plaza Hotel Oslo

Good location, and a dirty cloth

Stayed Jan 2016
Published Apr 2016

After a great visit of Amsterdam and seeing the many attractions including the canals, museums and the buildings, I stopped in Oslo for the weekend before heading to Reykjavik.

The biggest reason I wanted to visit Oslo was to see the Opera House and the statue of Ms Kirsten Flagstad, the renowned Wagnerian soprano.

The search for hotels began with personal favourite Starwood, which turned out to be zero, and finally I found several Radisson (Club Carlson) hotels.

Since I was going to be in Oslo for just the weekend, I needed somewhere central and considering all the factors, the answer was clearly the Radisson Blu Plaza Hotel.

The hotel was affected by a strike by the time of writing. http://www.reuters.com/article/norway-strike-idUSL5N17Q070

Wednesday, 20 April 2016

Waldorf Astoria Amsterdam: Lukewarm feelings

Waldorf Astoria Amsterdam: Lukewarm feelings

More Hits than Misses, but one expects more

Visited Jan 2016
Published Apr 2016


After great stays at Intercontinental Amstel and the Andaz, and not-so-great W Amsterdam, I arrived at the last and most expensive hotel of this trip to Amsterdam for one night.

This also meant I had the highest expectations.

In other words, I was setting myself up for disappointment.

So how much was it? 

Monday, 18 April 2016

Andaz Amsterdam: Deserves an A and no less

Andaz Amsterdam: Deserves an A and no less

Smooth from the Start to the End

Visited Jan 2016
Published Apr 2016




Entrance



After the elegant (and missing George Clooney) Intercontinental Amstel, my next hotel was the Andaz which I was keen to try as a new Hyatt Diamond member.

There are 2 Hyatt hotels in Amsterdam and 1 of them is at the airport. I prefer to be able to return to the hotel to rest in the afternoon and hence, am not too fond of staying at the airport.

So the Andaz was my only consideration.

The name of the hotel in full is the Andaz Amsterdam Prinsengracht.

The theme of the hotel is the 'Prince of Lost Dreams', which according to the Facebook of the hotel:

" The prince who gave his name to the Prinsengracht (Prince’s Canal) is also remembered as the ‘Prince of Lost Dreams’.
This prince was known to answer questions of people in such a way that they were able to vividly remember their inner strengths and most exciting dreams.
The Andaz Prince represents this legendary personality.
The silent scream of the Andaz Prince also has magic powers of its own. "

The statues of the mystical Prince are scattered throughout the hotel and can also be seen in the picture of the entrance above.