Greetings and salutations, gentle readers! I know it’s been months since TCT posted; we’re just about to undertake our next travel adventure. We’ll be starting in a very familiar place and, after that, visiting some amazing places we’ve never been before. Added to which, we’ll be traveling like we’ve never done before.
Just about 24 hours from now, we’ll be arriving at JFK for an overnight flight to London, via British Airways. Once we’ve checked in, we’ll have the very good fortune to dine at the airport, courtesy of BA’s Concorde Room.
Entrance to the Concorde Room, JFK
Here’s a sample menu from the Concorde Room:
Then it’s off to the gate to board our 747 chariot which will transport us across the pond:
Because we’ll have already eaten, we’ll just climb under the covers and grab some zzzzzs.
Fortunately, we’ll get some “fuel” before landing at LHR:
One of our favorite ways to travel from LHR into Central London is to take the Heathrow Express. If you’re able to manage your own luggage, it’s a painless (and very economical) way to get there. And, best of all, it’s 15 minutes from the airport to Paddington Station. And then we’re just a short taxi ride from the station to our hotel.
The Heathrow Express – only 15 minutes from LHR to Central London!
This time, we’re back at the Shangri-La, atop the amazing Shard
The Shangri-La at the Shard is a stone’s throw from London Bridge
Guest rooms at the Shangri-La are spacious and have amazing views
While we’re in London, we’ll have having some new adventures, starting with London theatre. We’ll be checking out the following shows:
Dreamgirls at the Savoy Theatre
Stephen Sondheim’s masterpiece, Follies, at the National Theatre
The hardest ticket of all: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child (in 2 parts)!
We’ll also have a few other adventures, whilst in London town.
The Dulwich Picture Gallery
Visiting the Dulwich Picture Gallery to see “Sargent: The Watercolours”
Checking out the world-famous Selfridges – the real thing, not the TV series
Having a spot of lunch at Selfridges’ new dining venue, the Roof Deck
After spending the week in beautiful London, we’ll be heading back out to LHR and boarding a flight for Vienna – our 1st visit there.
Vienna: City of My Dreams
So, you may ask, why have we chosen Vienna? Besides the fact that it’s one of the world’s most beautiful cities, with amazing culture and culinary treasures, and an incredible history all its own, it’s the place where we’ll start our next adventure:
Yes, we’re embarking on our first river cruise aboard the year-old Crystal Mozart. Although this boat is wider than just any other river boat (double width, in fact), it’s still a bit small by the standards to which we’ve become accustomed.
Our cabin is a “Penthouse with French Balcony” – actually, there is no balcony.
The Mozart is a 4-deck boat, accommodating about 150 passengers, and carrying about 90 crew. That’s a lot of crew for 150 passengers!
Deck 4 of Crystal Mozart. When going under low crossings, everything on this
deck is hydraulically lowered – it’s magic.
Here’s a map of our itinerary:
As you can see, we’ll be visiting some interesting places, all new to us.
The river cruise will be 11 days and we’ll start and finish with an overnight in Vienna.
On the last evening of our cruise, we’ll be taken to the Belvedere Palace for champagne and a command performance, just for us and our fellow passengers.
When we disembark in Vienna at the conclusion of our cruise, we’ll remain for a few days so that we can really experience the city.
Our digs in Vienna: The Ritz-Carlton
One of the Junior Suites at the Ritz-Carlton
Dreamy and well-stocked bathroom at the Ritz-Carlton
Things to do while we’re in Vienna:
Schönbrunn Palace (seeing how the other half lives)
The magnificent St. Stephen’s Cathedral
“Caffee mit schlag” at Cafe Demel
Seeing the horses rehearse at the Spanish Riding School
Dining at the multi-Michelin starred Steirereck
Attending an all-Mozart concert at the beautiful Musikverein
And, most improbably, we’ll be paying a visit to Vienna’s Volksoper (The People’s Opera), where you can hear opera, operetta, concerts and, in our case, something completely surprising and unexpected:
Arthur Laurents’, Jule Styne’s and Stephen Sondheim’s Gypsy – in German!
All-in-all, it’s going to be a very interesting trip. We’ll be gone for about 3 weeks, and I hope to post for you while we’re away.
In the meantime, ta-ta and auf wiedersehn for now.