Monday, January 30, 2017

Review Glessner House - Chicago Historic Site

A tour of Glessner House, in Chicago's Prairie District had been on my bucket list for a few years. Glad to have completed the tour and experience early in 2017.  

Prairie Avenue, once known as “millionaires’ row” began subdivision in the 1850s.  Chicago icons George Pullman and Marshall Field helped establish Prairie Avenue as Chicago’s premier residential street. Alas by the 1910's the area had fallen out of fashion as the city grew - and today only a few of the original houses remain. Luckily with the rebirth of the south-side- live seems good in the area.

The exterior of the house I found stark contrast to other homes of the period and on the street. This was the intent and desire of the owner and architect. Lots of good history to the home design can be found on the museum website. I especially liked that the house was devoid of windows on the north-side - environmentally sound and kept more private.

Thursday, January 26, 2017

German Christmas Markets - Review

Rothenburg, Germany
I had the opportunity to be in Germany on a business trip at the start of the Christmas season. Luckily few colleagues took me to Christmas markets in four different towns! These Christkindlmarkt, are street markets during the four weeks of Advent.  The majority I went too were around the town square - or the oldest/largest church. There was always local food, hot drinks (several flavors of mulled wines!) and open-air merchants willing holiday items or trinkets. Many had a schedule of singing and performances from local artists. 

I was in markets in Frankfurt, Mannheim, Rothenburg, and at Schwetzingen Castle (and garden!) Frankfurt was so very large! Almost too large. The one around Schwtzingen Castle was perhaps too small. My favorite was in Rothenburg as the whole town is historic and it just felt like a fairy tale! The only downside to this location was getting there - took four different trains from Frankfurt! Well off the beaten path for tourists (but not locals.)

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Dublin Castle & Garden - Review

Why am I posting so many things about Ireland? Maybe it's because I'm working for a Dublin based company and traveling there perhaps a tad too much...

A colleague asked it I wanted to visit the Dublin Castle and Garden. She had me at "garden."  That said, without having done any research - it was not what I expected. I thought old ruins of a building with some acreage of grounds - similar to Powerscourt.  I learned that the Dublin Castle is really a government building in the middle of Dublin proper!

We first arrived before anything opened - and it was perfect to walk around the exterior, linger in the garden and really absorb the atmosphere. Later in the day there were hundreds of tourists which made it a tad difficult to place oneself back in time to get a feel for the history.

Dublin Castle - Fall 2016
Dublin Castle Tour - Fall 2016