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Marriott  Courtyard and Residence Inn at New York Central Park

Marriott Courtyard New York Manhattan/Central Park,1717 Broadway, NY, NY.

I have found my new favourite hotel for future New York visits. Unlike my regular brief visits to New York as a theatre, food and wine writer (NY Spring 2014), this New York visit had a special purpose. My grand-daughter is part of a youth choir which has the exciting opportunity to perform in a program at Carnegie Hall and I decided to join my family in Manhattan for a full week of exploring New York from the perspective of family tourism.

Our criteria for choosing a hotel for this week vacation included walking distance  to Carnegie Hall,
rooms with double beds rather than a single king, mini-kitchen and in-room wifi, that would not break the bank! The Courtyard Marriott...

Marriott  Courtyard and Residence Inn at New York Central Park

Marriott Courtyard New York Manhattan/Central Park,1717 Broadway, NY, NY.

I have found my new favourite hotel for future New York visits. Unlike my regular brief visits to New York as a theatre, food and wine writer (NY Spring 2014), this New York visit had a special purpose. My grand-daughter is part of a youth choir which has the exciting opportunity to perform in a program at Carnegie Hall and I decided to join my family in Manhattan for a full week of exploring New York from the perspective of family tourism.

Our criteria for choosing a hotel for this...

Andrew Chown, Hailey Gillis. Photo by David Blue.

Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare
Directed by Kim Collier
Bard on the Beach Shakespeare Festival

Shakespear's tragic tale of young love doomed by outside forces they are powerless to control, is a timeless drama beloved of diverse audiences around the world. The Vancouver rain was pounding on the big tent in Vanier Park as we listened to Artistic Director Christopher Gaze tell us that this pair of star-crossed lovers, Romeo and Juliet, will soon take their lives. An interesting choice to have Gaze start the play proper seamlessly from his welcoming statements, and joined for the last...

Italian Dreams Cruise on the Crystal Serenity

When I took this picture of the Crystal Serenity, I was luxuriating in the pleasures of a ten night "Italian Dreams" cruise. After spending two glorious days in Venice, we embarked on the Serenity, calling at ports from Kotor in Montenegro to Taormina, Sorrento and others finally disembarking in Monte Carlo. The icing on the cake for me of this luxury cruise, was ballroom dancing every night in the spacious Palm Court or the Stardust Club. I loved that Crystal experience even more than I enjoyed an autumn cruise along the Eastern Seaboard from New York to Halifax on the...

The Arts Umbrella Musical Theatre Troupe in The Drowsy Chaperone. Photo by Tim Matheson

The Drowsy Chaperone
Music and Lyrics by Lisa Lambert and Greg Morrison  Book by Bob Martin and Don McKellar
Directed by Andy Toth   Musical Direction by Erin Hope-Goldsmith  Choreography by  Erika Babins
The Arts Umbrella Musical Theatre Troupe at  Waterfront Theatre, Granville Island
May 21st, 2016

Vancouver, BC:  I just spent a delightful couple of hours with a friend at the Waterfront Theatre on Granville Island watching the students of the  Arts Umbrella Musical Theatre Troupe perform The Drowsy Chaperone. I first saw this musical almost ten years ago, shortly after it opened at the...

Colleen Wheeler and Scott Bellis. Photo by Emily Cooper

Good People by David Lindsay-Abaire
An Arts Club Theatre Company production at
Stanley Industrial Alliance Stage.
Although I enjoy almost every form of theatre I most love plays that leave me with an idea or question to mull over on my way home. In Good People there were two words that echoed in my mind as I drove home. The first was choice; the second was perspective.  These two concepts resonated strongly within me partly because  the conflict between the protagonist, Margie (Colleen Wheeler) and her one-time boy friend, Mike (Scott Bellis), perfectly illustrated points made at...

Gorgonzola fondue

Hamilton Street Grill
1009 Hamilton Street
Yaletown

To entertain a visitor from Calgary who, like a true Albertan, enjoys a great steak, I chose the Hamilton Street Grill for dinner. It's a ten minute walk from my downtown apartment but on searching my reviews, it has been quite a while since I dined there.

Ironically, although a great steak dinner was in our plans, the gorgonzola fondue and mushroom tart on the starter menu caught our attention and almost simultaneously we both said "let's sample the appetizer menu rather than just having steak."

Audra McDonald, George Farmer in Broadway production. Photo by Evgenia Eliseeva.

Planning a theatre visit to London this summer? If so be sure to see Lady Day at Emerson's Bar and Grill, playing at Wyndham's Theatre, Charing Cross Road, from June 25 to September 3rd, 2016.  I loved the show when I saw it in New York shortly before it closed in 2014. Audra McDonald is reprising her role as the jazz singer Billie Holliday.

Lamb lollipops with butternut squash puree

Cabrito - Tapas Bebidas

2270 Commercial Drive
Vancouver, V5N 4B
Ph: (604) 620- 7636

Thanks to my friend hearing that on Sunday evenings Cabrito features flamenco music, we set off to Commercial Drive on a cold rainy night to try this new restaurant. We were so glad we did because the food was excellent, the service warm and friendly and we enjoyed the music.

The food is served tapas style - meant for sharing. Our server suggested 4 to 6  dishes for two people. We initially ordered four but ended up ordering a fifth, which turned out to...

Vidanta Nuevo Vallarta layout March 2016
Persona is "the nature of our character that is shown to or perceived by other". My present cast of characters ranges from mother, grandmother, friend, to professor emerita, medical doctor,  writer, reviewer, dancer, coach, mentor and entrepreneur. But at YVR as my daughter (Alo) and I meet up with her friend (NG) with her bubbly preschooler (EP), a new persona is added to my cast... I am instantly dubbed “Aunty Mandy's mom”. And as I explore the environs of our Mexican vacation spot over the next seven days, my “Aunty Mandy's mom” persona will provide a great counterbalance to the...
Salmon ceviche

Sashimi, ceviche - I love eating raw fish - sashimi style or marinated as in ceviche.&nbsp; One of my best memories from a visit to Lima, Peru was eating a very delicate <strong><a href="http://www.reviewfromthehouse.com/supping-away-lima-peru-la-rosa-nautica">ceviche at Rosa Nautica a restaurant located way out on the water.

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Andrew Chown, Hailey Gillis. Photo by David Blue.

Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare
Directed by Kim Collier
Bard on the ...

The Arts Umbrella Musical Theatre Troupe in The Drowsy Chaperone. Photo by Tim Matheson

The Drowsy Chaperone
Music and Lyrics by Lisa Lambert and Greg Morrison  Book by ...

Latest Review From The Cellar

Gorgonzola fondue

Hamilton Street Grill
1009 Hamilton Street
Yaletown

To entertain a visitor from Calgary ...

Lamb lollipops with butternut squash puree

Cabrito - Tapas Bebidas

2270 Commercial Drive
Vancouver, V5N 4B
Ph: (604) 620- ...

Latest Review From The Cabin

Marriott  Courtyard and Residence Inn at New York Central Park

Marriott Courtyard New York Manhattan/Central Park,1717 Broadway, NY, NY.

I have found my new favourite ...

Italian Dreams Cruise on the Crystal Serenity

When I took this picture of the Crystal Serenity, I was luxuriating in the pleasures ...

Latest Review From The Studio

Tasting Wine & Cheese: Cover photo by Glenn Scott Photography

One of my guilty pleasures, indulged in only when I know for sure that I ...

the Junior Entrepreneurs EXPO site

For the summer holidays. my grand-daughter CJ was enrolled in a summer camp program called ...