Travelscope Podcast

Alaska Cruise - Part 1

Posted on July 04, 2014

America’s Last Frontier has a world of attractions awaiting the visitor — in every season. Today Joseph takes off on a Regent Seven Seas Mariner Alaska adventure. He’ll highlight the historic and multi-cultural side of Anchorage, sample local cuisine, view wildlife and soak up Alaska’s breathtaking beauty. We’ll also meet the people of Alaska they’ll share with us their unique spirit and character and along the way we’ll give you some ideas so that you can plan your own Alaska journey.


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Alaska Cruise - Part 1

Zambia Bush and River Safari

Posted on June 15, 2014

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Gold Medal Winner - “Lowell Thomas Journalism Award”




Joseph flies into the bush for astonishing wildlife and cultural encounters with the animals and people of Zambia’s Luangwa Valley before he “roughs it” in a swank safari camp on the shore of the great Zambezi river within ear shot of hippos and elephants. He then heads south to stand on historic Livingstone Island at the edge of thundering Victoria Falls.


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Zambia Bush and River Safari

New York’s Lower East Side - One of Manhattan’s Genuine Neighborhoods

Posted on May 17, 2014

I may be life-long loyal Californian, but I still love New York. On my last visit I headed downtown to the Lower East Side—one of Manhattan’s authentic neighborhoods—for a stay at the Hotel on Rivington. It’s a cool, hip hotel and a fascinating historic neighborhood. Click here to read my blog on both. In this latest pod cast I speak with general manager, MarcAnthony Crimi, and sales manager, Baudouin Casteele, about the hotel and share some great neighborhood discoveries on my latest Pod Cast.
For more on the Hotel on Rivington go to HotelonRivington.com or call 212-475-2600.


For information on all of the unique, quality boutique properties under the House of Kooser umbrella go to HouseofKooser.com.


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New York’s Lower East Side - One of Manhattan’s Genuine Neighborhoods

Machu Picchu Pueblo - Gateway to a World Wonder!

Posted on April 25, 2014

Machu Picchu Pueblo also known as Aquas Calientes (“Hot Waters” - because of its famous hot springs) is the gateway to the world’s most famous archeological site, Machu Picchu.  Founded in 1911 along with the railway (a monumental engineering feat), the town began just ten years after the modern-day discovery of the Incan royal city of Machu Picchu.  It is the end of the line for the daily trains that bring visitors from Cusco and the Sacred Valley.  Besides being the starting point for a twenty-minute bus ride or a hour and half hike to the archeological site, the town offers its own attractions.


The central market is filled with a large selection of tourist trinkets, as well as local goods, such as colorful hand-woven textiles, fresh fruits and produce, exotic sounding and smelling herbs and natural homemade concoctions created for your benefit.  I was glad to find a fresh supply of Maca, a powder made from a root crop that is said to have been used by Incan royalty for strength and stamina.  Of course, there are stalls offering Coca leaves, which are especially good for the treatment of the high altitude illness often encountered by flatlanders newly arrived in the Andes.


There are a surprising number of good restaurants in town. Indio Feliz offers an eclectic menu and an abundance of spirited fun that gets your Andean vacation off to a good start.  An elegant stop for local and fusion foods is the Tree House, where you may get a Thai spiced fish or hearty Peruvian meat dish with your genuine Pisco sours.  Since spending a night in Machu Picchu Pueblo in order to beat the tour groups and be one of the first at the archeological site is one of my best recommendations, it’s a good that there are a wide selection of accommodations in town.  They run the gamut from student hostels to five-star properties, yet none even closely compares with the glorious Inkaterra Machu Picchu Pueblo Hotel, a Relais & Chateaux property. 


Tucked away in a 12-acre garden of tropical flora, the intimate 85-casita hotel conjures up an Andean village in architecture and spirit.  Located on the edge of the Vilcanota River, it offers a gentle refuge from the overflow of people in town and at up at the site.  Dinner at its first-class restaurant is within ear shot of the rushing river (breakfast and lunch are included in your hotel package) and was one of the highlights of my and Julie’s Peruvian adventure.  In my latest pod cast, I discuss the property and the hotel’s commitment to the protection and preservation of Peru’s natural treasures, including the endangered Andean Bear, with hotel general manager Joaquin Escudero.


For information on all the Inkaterra properties in Peru go to Inkaterra.com.  For more on the Inkaterra Machu Picchu Pueblo Hotel visit their website.


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Machu Picchu Pueblo - Gateway to a World Wonder!

Inkaterra La Casona

Posted on April 05, 2014

Cuzco, the gateway to Machu Picchu, was considered by the ancient Incas as the “navel of the world.” On the top of the Incan temples that they had destroyed the Spanish built their haciendas, churches and public buildings. The Mueso Inka tells the story of the Incas and the different peoples who settled their lands before them. At the Museo Casa Concha you can prepare for your visit to Machu Picchu, the most stunning of Incan ruins, by learning about the world’s most famous archeological site and the many theories that surrounding it. In addition, you’ll see artifacts from Machu Picchu, including some recently returned to Peru from the Peabody Museum in Cambridge, Massachusetts where the “discoverer” of Machu Picchu, Hiram Bingham, deposited them in the 1920s. History is everywhere is Cuzco. What is now the main Plaza de Armas was the center of the Incan capital from the 12th century until time of the Spanish conquest in 1532. After you’ve visited the numerous museums, churches and Incan ruins there is no better way to past the time than to find a seat at one of the cafés that surround the plaza, sip a Pisco sour and watch the passing parade of people from all over the world. The city’s structures are literally built on the back of Incan empire and at our excellent accommodation, Inkaterra La Casona, a former “big house” where notables such as Simon Bolivar, the liberator of South America, once stayed, the Incan foundation still supports the former Spanish mansion. La Casona is one of four Inkaterra hotels in Peru—all of them several cuts above the rest—and from its location on peaceful Plaza Nazerenas, all of the city’s main attractions are within walking distance. In my latest pod cast I speak with Luisella Garmendia, the hotel’s resident manager, about the experience of living and working in a city where the past is forever present. For information on all the Inkaterra properties in Peru go to http://www.Inkaterra.com.


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Inkaterra La Casona

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