Restaurant Review: Fujitaya, Miyajima near Hiroshima, Japan

On a recent visit to Japan we found ourselves visiting the Floating Tori tourist attraction on Miyajima Island, which is a 40 minute journey from Hiroshima station. When doing some research on the area we found that seafood was a particular speciality of the area and specifically local oysters or eel (anago) rice. When I looked for restaurants on the island I came across Fujitaya in the Michelin guide, which has been awarded one Michelin star. Given Fujitaya had been rated top on the island we decided to give it a try!

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Hotel Review: Hotel Granvia, Hiroshima

On a recent trip to Japan we stayed in two locations, Hiroshima and Osaka. Our first stay on the trip was at the Hotel Granvia in Hiroshima, where we spent 3 nights.

We booked the hotel directly with Cathay Pacific as part of a flights and hotel package, so it’s pretty difficult to say what we paid for the hotel (although it was probably around £100-150 per night). The booking was easy and at check in we were allocated a room on the Premium (19th) floor. We think this was an upgrade, but it’s difficult to tell exactly what we booked.

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Cottage Review: Hook Norton Barn, Hook Norton, Cotswolds

Myself and Clara have just spent the last week in a lovely converted barn near Chipping Norton in the Cotswolds called Hook Norton Barn. Owned by a couple who live at the opposite end of the field and own the local garage / petrol station 2 minutes away. Hook Norton Barn was recently converted and had its first guests in August 2016, which means we were one of the first few guests to enjoy this lovely space.

We found the barn through Sykes Cottages, but it also has its own website we found afterwards. The standard check-in is on a Friday evening after 3pm and we met with Sonya, one of the owners, at the barn around 4.30pm. Sonya gave us a quick tour, answered any questions and left us to it. With the owners living 2 minutes away we always felt we could get support if needed, but actually never needed to contact them during our stay.

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Hotel Review: The Royal Suites Turquesa by Palladium, Punta Cana, Dominican Republic

I’ve just returned from an 11 night trip to the Dominican Republic with my wife, staying at The Royal Suites Turquesa by Palladium. We booked this hotel mainly due to the fact it was adults only, but like most hotels in Punta Cana, it also offers all-inclusive board by default. We were really looking for a restful break spent on the beach or by the pool in late April / early May and we took a chance with booking in the Dominican Republic, despite this being the end of the high season. In the end our gamble paid off, with only a couple of days of rain throughout out stay.

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Cottage Review: The Cow Pen, Snitterfield, near Stratford-upon-Avon

We recently spent a week in The Cow Pen, Snitterfield to have a week of relaxation, getting away from the hustle of London. I booked the cottage on Sykes Cottages, but later found the official website here. Booking was simple and we received a confirmation email and paid automatically in two instalments. I was advised to call the property owner (who lives right next door to the cottages) in the week before arrival to arrange for key collection. I spoke with Wendy, the owner, and arranged to pick-up the keys at the property on our check-in day.

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Baku Last Impressions – 3 weeks on

Three weeks ago I wrote a post (which I didn’t publish until my return as I didn’t want to cause any issues with me in the country) about my first 3 hours in the Baku, Azerbaijan.  I’ve since returned after spending three weeks and thought I’d leave with my final impressions of the 1st European Games and what I thought of Baku.

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Baku First Impressions – 3 Hours In

I’ve posted this after my return from Azerbaijan, as I didn’t want any of the comments to lead to trouble while I was in the country.

I thought I would put down on paper my first impressions of Baku, Azerbaijan. Please bear in mind these are impressions after 2 hours of broken sleep on a plane and a broken night sleep the night before – so maybe this is what made them so exciting to me!

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