28 Dec 2016
Weather’s great. Wish you were here.
Just kidding. My bad. I have been totally remiss in writing JetSetWay Blogs. Since we still haven’t come across our good camera from the house move, I just wasn’t thrilled with most of the photos. Plus most days I just hung around the gym for a few minutes in the morning, vegged at the family cabana by day and restauranted by night.
Allyn and I came in a day early, and friends Terye and Jacob suckered me to come all the way to the Four Seasons for dinner. It took forever to get there, the food was OK, and the company great. They’re always a kick.
The next day was the annual Wendi birthday at The Chart House. Joey and Yana are such great hosts and run a fabulous restaurant.
Some of us did a few serious climbs.
Suntory sucked. Previously I never met a Teppanyaki meal that I didn’t like.
The Outrigger has a famous Sunday at Duke’s activity and even has a song about it. Joey is a rock star there because he was a world champion surfer and his photos are all over the place.
Dinner at Taromina was so good that we booked a second one with them for Christmas and that one was even more sensational.
Of course Michel’s may have the best ambiance of any restaurant anywhere. The food and service are still good.
Ocean House right on the water is another annual tradition we enjoy.
Roy’s has really gone downhill. It is so busy and noisy. It was clear they wanted us in and out in a hurry. Fortunately I know how to pour a bottle of wine.
Speaking of bad meals, Il Lupino was the absolute worst. Both my boys warned me that I previously committed never to return there, but I did anyway. They were rude, seated us over an hour late, ran out of pizza and other items, had terrible service and really seemed to enjoy being terrible. People were irate.
And speaking of Christmas Joey and Yana had a fun party at their home. It’s always fun to meet various locals around the world.
Wolfgang’s is always good for a nice steak.
The Royal Hawaiian is still special for us due to tradition, but only is a shell of its former glamorous past.
Worse though is Waikiki. So many vendors just don’t care. Since we were with family and friends, it was a blast anyway.
09 Aug 2016
Our summer pattern has been that as soon as the World Series of Poker is over we have headed for Europe. I mean Las Vegas weather is less than pleasant this time of year – unless you like being in a pizza oven.
This summer has been special because we are finishing construction of our new home, which means staying relatively close to town for frequent visits.
My friend Mo Fathipour, Tournament Director at Bicycle Casino, suggested I visit them for their major annual August tournament, Legends of Poker Tournament, which allows us to visit their brand new hotel and just be an hour from home. Plus we can get in some serious poker.
So here we are.
When most folks think of L.A. they think of Hollywood, Beverly Hills, Pacific Ocean and other areas west of downtown. They have many great hotels and the best ones charge in the $700 range for a room.
Here, we are just 10 miles east of downtown and it is a different world. Those of us who play poker appreciate having a beautiful new hotel here.
What a pleasure it is to be able to stay at the venue and not have to suffer the horrendous traffic in order to have a nice room. And the room rates are only 25 – 30% of comparable quality west of downtown. Everything here is modern, clean, neat and tidy - the rooms, reception, gym, spa, and fitness center. When you call down to valet to bring your car, it is there when you get downstairs. Oh, and the employees are all exceptionally nice.
They've done a terrific job with The Bike Hotel. It is a pleasure to be staying here.
02 May 2016
Ketchikan is fun, cute, loaded with totem poles and bars, and is very rainy.
We tend to eat lunch off the ship in Alaska because the seafood is so fresh and delicious.
At Annabelle's Famous Keg and Chowderhouse, I ordered Allyn a 6-ounce beer sampler. Who knew it was 6 ounces per glass?
No place has more totem poles than here.
Coming from Seattle I constantly hear about our rain. Here are some facts about average annual rainfall. Mobile, Alabama has the most rain of any city in the Continental U.S., 30% more than Seattle.
However Ketchikan, Alaska has almost triple the rainfall of Mobile. That is a bunch.
29 Apr 2016
Cute sign in jewelry store window.
Skagway was beautiful today, but it was a rough, tough city during the Klondike Gold Rush.
Gold was discovered in the Klondike region of the Yukon in NW Canada on August 16, 1896.
It was "just far enough away to be romantic and just close enough to be accessible".
From July, 1897 for about a year, over 100,000 dreamers traveled mainly from Seattle to Skagway hoping to get rich.
Canadian authorities required each person to bring a year's supply of food. Each hauled close to a ton of equipment, which for most had to be carried in stages by themselves.
Even though they only had to hike a route of about 40 miles over the pass they walked single-file and needed about 30 round trips to get all their belongings moved. The result was about 2,500 miles trekking over a 90 day period.
It is estimated that maybe 1% came back with more than they left with.
When gold was discovered in Nome in 1899, that was the end of the Klondike Gold Rush.
27 Apr 2016
Seward is all about nature. There are not too many places where in a couple hours you can enjoy the mountains, bald eagles, hundreds of seagulls, dozens of sea lions and a several whales.
Many humpback whales split their time between Maui and here. Frankly if that were the choice for me, I would just stay in Maui for another couple months.