Choosing the right hotel

Booking a hotel isn’t a simple task. It’s not go online, find a hotel and book it.

So in December I’m thinking of going away for a little time. This would be my first time leaving the country (excluding the US) on my own. So I will be planning my own vacation, paying for it etc. Finding a good flight is pretty easy, finding one with a good hotel to go with it, is a whole other kettle of fish.

I find when you’re going to certain countries or cities you can rough it and stay at a motel or a 2 star motel or something like that. But certain countries or cities, nothing against them, but you don’t want to go to anything below a 4 star. You just don’t want to risk it. To make matters worse, my parents would absolutely have a cow if I told them I was going back to Jamaica and staying at a motel somewhere off a left turn of Timbuktu.

In Jamaica, I will be heading to either Ochio Rios, Runaway Bay or Montego Bay. Yes, I am not sure where yet because of pricing when I am going to get my ticket. I am currently waiting for my friend to get her passport straight and then we can decide together. But it seems the closer you are to a tourist destination the more expensive it is.  There are so many things to look into when choosing a hotel.

  • Is it around spring break time? And will there be a bunch of college age kids running around and partying?
  • How many stars is it? Are you good with staying at anything below a four star?
  • How accessible is the hotel? Do you have a to climb a massive hill then to the tenth floor because they decided they won’t be putting in elevators? (this happened to me a few years ago. They refuse to put elevators in because the hotel was in a historical building – *eye-roll*) – how close to the action is your hotel?
  • If its a little bit of a drive, do they have access to licensed cabs.
  • Is it all inclusive? And by all-inclusive I mean, do you get all your drinks and food included?
  • If you’re a person who is joined at the hips to social network, does this hotel have free wi-fi?
  • Is the hotel in a safe place?
  • What are other people saying about this hotel and its staff?
  • Is there a secure safe in the hotel that you can leave your things?

And those are just some of the questions you need to ask. It may sound like a bunch and I’m being obsessive but you want to make sure you do enough on your end to have an amazing time away.  And sure, you may say why do I care? I just need to sleep there and leave my stuff there!Valid points but when you do go to sleep you want to make you are comfortable.

Views – Jamaica Inn

Picking a hotel should be something to do based on your personality as well. If you go to a party hotel when you’re a reader that wouldn’t end very well because you would have no quiet time at all.  If you go to a hotel that caters to adventure seekers, that is not a good fit either. For people like me, the romantics. We love the thought of being in love and being in love with. We need a hotel with spectacular views of the ocean by day and the city at nights. I want a hotel with places I can wander on the property and just dream while breathing. So scenic trails and beach views during dimmer is super important. I will post more on the Jamaica Inn in another post but this hotel has all of that it seems.

The next time you look for a place to stay, look into it and make sure it caters to you.




A Few Days in Cambridge with A

Hello my lovely, lovely readers.

So I know, I’ve been MIA a lot lately and that’s because there has been some stuff happening in my life from deaths in the family to a whole slew of other things.  But I have returneth and I have a few things I wanted to write about. Everyone was going through the winter games (Yay Canada!) and so much focus has been switched to Russia and the whole Ukraine deal that it’s been almost an unpleasant start to the month.  But you know what? I can’t let all that affect me quite yet.

Wings from JUNIORS in Cambridge

Last week I took off from Toronto to go spend some time in Cambridge with my friend A. It may not be vacation to anyone else but that was vacation to me. Correct that, any time I can leave Toronto for more than a day, it’s vacation to me.

It was like old times for us, our college days, without my BFF. But we called her and text her and after a while it was almost like she was there, almost. We listened to music we used to listen to back then and talked about our lives now and in college.  It’s amazing how much you miss someone until you get to spend a few days with them. I hadn’t hung out with A for about five years. Sure, we talked on facebook and texting and phone calls but it’s not the same as if you could lay across your bed while your friend dance around the room to Go Ninja Go Ninja Go by Vanilla Ice (lol). As you can see, we know how to party! We spent the few days driving around the city, hitting up some spots and just having a little bit of fun. I let loose and went to wing and beer night while watching hockey games in an actual pub – those wings *drool and swoons* so good. This place called Juniors was to die for.

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Photo by A – Lonestar

That was good but the last night I was there A took me to Lonestar. She told me it was a cowboy bar and  I was kind of expecting to see more cowboys but only saw one. There’s a story behind that but I don’t know if she wants me to tell it lol. We were escorted to our seat by a waitress even though the little kid inside me was on the ground, rolling around screaming, no no no! I want the cowboy! But I’m a lady. I behaved – besides, I was wearing a dress.

Still I was highly entertained by it. It seems at Lonestar, when it’s a child’s birthday the child become an honorary cowboy, sit on a wooden horse while they scream “ATTENTION! ATTENTION! IT’s (insert child’s name) (insert child’s age here) today!” Then they clap and sing a birthday song to the child. I was enjoying myself clapping. It is fun to watch a little boy with a cowboy hat enjoy his special day.

The food was good – I had a bar-b-que burger with fries because they didn’t cook the fried steak well done and I wasn’t about to take a chance with the little bit of red. If I was going home after then it wouldn’t be bad but I was going to someone else’s house *bites nail*

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Menu from Lonestar – Photo by A

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My drink – Photo by A

So, that’s my little trip away from the city!










A few years ago I was addicted to the history channel. They used to show this breath-taking shoes of places all over the world–old, historic places that were so beautiful and interesting.  One of those places was Petra, in Jordan.  This lovely place is carved out of rocks, surrounded by mountains and filled with gorges and secret passage ways!  Maybe its the writer in me but how has no one thought of writing a secret agent book that’s set in Petra?

But I digress.

Petra is a Nabataean city to the south of Jordan founded around the 6th Century BC. It was an important center for trade and commerce until a major earthquake destroyed most of the city and crippled the water system around AD 663. It was abandoned after Saladin’s conquest in 1189.

Today, Petra is a UNESCO Heritage site and one of the NEW seven wonders of the world!

According to wikitravel:

Entry Ticket to Petra costs 90 JD (=127 USD) for those who are Day-Visitors to Jordan (i.e. those tourists staying in Israel or Egypt who will spend the day in Petra and return without spending the night in Jordan). Tourists (overnight and cruise visitors) pay 50 JD (=70 USD) for 1 day’s access to Petra, 55 JD for 2 days or 60 JD for 3 days. Students have to pay the full price, unless they have a valid Jordanian University ID; then the entry fee is 1 JD.

Photo from Arabian Business

Photo from PR Log

Photo from Famous Wonders

Photo: Candles in front of Al Khazneh in Petra, Jordan

Photo from National Geographic


Happy Holidays From FoTS!

Well my traveling, eating beauties, another year has come and gone and I wish to take the time to wish you all a happy holiday season.  If you are traveling be safe and remember not to drink and drive. Just because you aren’t home doesn’t mean this rule does not apply to you. It still does because this is one instant it is better to be safe than sorry I always say.

If you are in your home land, the same advice applies to you. Have fun with your family this season, hug them extra hard and tell them you love them a little louder than you would normally. Remember, take nothing for granted and love will sooth you every time. Again, from my home to yours, love, laughter and blessings and I look forward to see you all in the new year!




Thailand – Who knew?

Long boat in Thailand

From asiaroom.com

So, I am trying to write a short story for Harlequin’s Digital First Erotic Vacation Line and I am researching different countries to see where I could have my heroine visit. I googled Exotic Vacation Location and this website showed up that listed the top ten exotic vacations we can all afford. Thailand was on that list I thought about it.

Thailand isn’t the first place I would think of being beautiful. Maybe its because of the stuff you read in the news or see on television but I never saw it as a vacation location. Then I started looking at the pictures and all I can see are pristine beaches, beautiful green waters, ancient temples with statutes – it was the most spectacular views and floating markets. This is such a beautiful place – such wonderful intricacies that is breath-taking. Well sure, there are drawbacks but are they so much that I would never visit this lovely place? I think not!

Photo from The Second Globe

Photo from Travel The World

Photo from Travel to World

Photo from 4photo