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30 March 2013

The Palacio Fronteira in Lisbon, Portugal — a Rousing Hymn to the Color Blue

Visitors from all over the world travel to see the vibrant blue and white azulejos at the Palacio Fronteira in Lisbon, Portugal. All photography and artwork in this post are the property of Penny Ewles-Bergeron. Unauthorized use is prohibited.
Visitors from all over the world travel to see the vibrant blue and white azulejos at the Palacio Fronteira in Lisbon, Portugal. All photography and artwork in this post are the property of Penny Ewles-Bergeron. Unauthorized use is prohibited.

Once again, it is my privilege and honor to welcome my guest Penny Ewles-Bergeron, an English artist and writer who briefly called Lisbon home. In her own words, she "requires art, music, dance, history, politics & good food to thrive." You can find her on Twitter @ABroadBrush tweeting her sophisticated wit and charm intermingled with points of view on art and life, and my favorite—humor! Penny has contributed to EuroTravelogue in the past with a tour through Szentendre, Hungary, but today, she escorts us through the wonder of Palacio Fronteira in Lisbon, Portugal, for a grand tour of the palace as well as its vibrant blue and white tiles or azulejos that have become synonymous with Portugal itself. As you will see, her painting of the palace is as equally brilliant as the photography throughout. 

Not far from Lisbon is a smart red 17th-century fine house, standing resplendent in crisp formal gardens. But the colour red is not what the Palacio Fronteira is all about; this palace is a rousing hymn to the colour blue. Here visitors from all over the world come to see the ravishing blue and white tiles — azulejos — that are part of Portugal's ceramic tradition.

22 March 2013

A Tour of Malia, Crete, Old and New

Malia Beach at sunset in Crete, Greece. Photo: Henry Jackson Photography. Unauthorized use is prohibited.
Malia Beach at sunset in Crete, Greece. Photo: Henry Jackson Photography. Unauthorized use is prohibited.

One of the strange juxtapositions of European beach holidays is the wild mix of modernity and antiquity, that in a single location you can experience a fun and crazy nightlife and then spend your day exploring the deep past of human civilizations. Such is the case with iconic destinations like the Greek village of Malia, where Cretan partygoers might mend their hangovers in close proximity to budding archaeologists eager to wander pre-Homeric sites. Be it for hedonism or intellectualism, Malia holidays provide an opportunity to revel in pleasures both contemporary and historical.

18 March 2013

AmaWaterways to Christen the AmaVida Friday with Sharon Stone

AmaWaterways Christens AmaVida, their newest member of the fleet on Friday, March 22. Photo: Courtesy of AmaWaterways. Unauthorized use is prohibited.
AmaWaterways Christens AmaVida, their newest member of the fleet on Friday, March 22. Photo: Courtesy of AmaWaterways. Unauthorized use is prohibited. 

AmaWaterways welcomes their newest member of the fleet, the AmaVida, Friday, March 22, in Porto, Portugal, with godmother Sharon Stone presiding over the christening pomp and circumstance.

“We are thrilled to have such an accomplished and acclaimed person as Sharon Stone as the AmaVida’s godmother,” said Kristin Karst, AmaWaterways’ Executive Vice President and Co-Owner. “We are so inspired by Sharon’s extensive humanitarian efforts over the years. Her beauty and grace make her the perfect match for the AmaVida, one of the loveliest and most technologically advanced river cruise ships in operation today.”

As you know, I am a big fan of European river cruising because of the wonderful introduction they provide to European cities along the way. From the intimate onboard settings and the convenience of docking at the front steps of European cities; to the immersive and distinctive excursions and the gourmet deliciousness of the fine dining selections onboard, river cruising is sublime holiday for all! And I just love cruising past the scenic splendor of Europe and reveling in every moment along the way of those unforgettable journeys through enchanting villages and landmark cities. With that, I am pleased to introduce to you to AmaVida, the newest member of the AmaWaterways fleet whose christening will take place this Friday in Porto, Portugal.

17 March 2013

ArtOdysseys: Traveling for the Love of Art

Manet's 'At the Cafe' painted in 1878. This scene takes place in the Cabaret de Reichshoffen on the Boulevard Rochechouart, where women on the fringes of society socialize with Parisian gentlemen. While you can see many of Manet's works in Paris, this one is in the The Walters Art Museum in Ohio. Photo: WikiMedia.org.
Manet's "At the Cafe" painted in 1878. This scene takes place in the Cabaret de Reichshoffen on the Boulevard Rochechouart, where women on the fringes of society socialize with Parisian gentlemen. While you can see many of Manet's works in Paris, this one is at the The Walters Art Museum in Ohio. Photo: WikiMedia.org.

Welcome to the ArtSmart Roundtable! Each month my colleagues and I publish an article highlighting a specific topic that combines art and traveling. This month, we focus our efforts on "Art Worth Traveling For," a subject I am particularly passionate about because wherever I travel regardless of the destination, I seek out art in one form or another. From frescoes and paintings to sculpture and architecture, I revel in experiencing as much as possible during each visit. And so I ask, isn't all art worth traveling for? How do you limit your experience to just one location without thinking about all that remains to be seen and explored, and so with that, I am going to highlight some of my favorites that I've encountered during my travels thus far and by no means is this list all-inclusive because that would take an encyclopedic approach. When you're finished reading, be sure to check out the rest of the ArtSmart Roundtable contributions for this month. Without further ado, I present traveling for the love of art and the sublime!

03 March 2013

A Journey Through Warsaw's Past and Present

Welcome to Old Town Warszawa or Warsaw, Poland. All photography is the property of Sharon Joseph. Unauthorized use is prohibited.
Welcome to Old Town Warszawa or Warsaw, Poland. All photography is the property of Sharon Joseph. Unauthorized use is prohibited.

I am thrilled to introduce my guest Sharon Joseph, a colleague and dear friend who just returned from two-week vacation in Poland. What you are about to read is her poignant tale through the past and present of Warsaw, Poland—a journey from a ravaged past to a promising future for this eastern-European nation. Without further ado, I present Warszawa seen through the eyes of a traveler who has seen beyond the visible world before her.

02 March 2013

The Basilica of Saint Nicholas in Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Sint Nicolaaskerk or the Basilica of Saint Nicholas in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. All photography property of EuroTravelogue™. Unauthorized use is prohibited.
Sint Nicolaaskerk or the Basilica of Saint Nicholas in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. All photography property of EuroTravelogue™. Unauthorized use is prohibited. 

Upon landing in Amsterdam on my tour with Viking River Cruises last year, I had the afternoon to while away in the city centre. First order of the day upon my arrival from the port was to meet up finally with longtime virtual friend Keith from VelvetEscape.com who sacrificed a few hours of his day to take me on a walking tour through Amsterdam. It was a wonderful afternoon full of the sightseeing and great conversation while we got to know each other a little better outside the usual constraints of 140 characters. Thank you once again Keith for your company!