Good morning Traveler,

I just arrived in Portland, Maine, one of my favorite foodie cities in the US. While here I am thinking about (and working on) all of the places you and I are traveling in the next couple of months…

Where to next…


Wyoming, Blackberry Farm, Las Vegas, Hudson Valley, Austin, Bahamas

And far…

London, Paris, Budapest, Munich
Italy – Positano, Milan, Piedmont, Florence, Venice, Lake Como, Rome, Amalfi Coast
Spain – Sevilla, Ronda, Madrid
Greece – Athens, Santorini, Mykonos, Crete, Naxos, Paros
Buenos Aires
Brazil – Rio, Bahia, Iguazu Falls
Tanzania, Zanzibar

The most popular place you are going to? Lake Como! Understandable as it is considered one of the world’s most beautiful places. Today I’m highlighting one of the many delicious restaurants in this region and added in a suggested boutique, just in case you (or a favorite person in your life)¬†needs¬†another handbag. The photo above from that boutique is just so quintessentially Italian I had to include it.

As mentioned above,¬†Portland¬†is an ideal foodie destination. I’m here for two days of meetings, but I believe there are no limits to the fun to inject in life, so in preparation for this trip, I looked into some out of the box foodie options with help from a local partner and the concierge at the¬†Press Hotel¬†where I am staying (my favorite hotel in Portland!).

My idea was to design a pub crawl, but not in a 20-something, over drinking sort of way. Instead intentionally hopping from place to place, pairing specialty cocktails with delicious bites. I’m calling it the “fun crawl.” I’ll share what we came up with below and feel free to follow along when you are next in Portland. The personal comments are from the concierge (she’s amazing!).

Crispy Gai

  • Alcohol:¬†PINEAPPLE DTO¬†(snack sized daiquiri) OR¬†MANGOLORIAN¬†(tequila resposado, mezcal, chili, mango, lime and coconut foam)
  • Non-Alcoholic:¬†NADA COLADA¬†(coconut milk, pineapple, lime, tropical bitters, nutmeg)
  • Food: Any of their¬†FRIED CHICKEN¬†is amazing. It’s definitely the best I’ve ever had and they have really unique sauces. Must try!


  • Alcohol:¬†BRUJA SAB√ćA¬†(bimini coconut gin, kiwi, gentian liqueur, la copa extra seco)
  • Non-Alcohol:¬†CARIBE√ĎO COOLER¬†(hibiscus, lime, mav√≠, soda)
  • Food:¬†BEEF EMPANADAS¬†(savory fried pastry stuffed with cheese & picadillo) – this is a phenomenal appetizer/snack

Bar Futo

  • Alcohol: Check out their¬†SAKE¬†list
  • Food: Their¬†CRISPY EGGPLANT¬†is phenomenal but I also recommend checking out their¬†SKEWERED¬†list

Hunt and Alpine

  • Alcohol:¬†WHITE NOISE¬†(elderflower, bubbles, grapefruit oil) – can be ordered as a sharable pitcher or¬†DAILY PUNCH¬†which can be ordered as a shot or cocktail
  • Non-Alcohol:¬†ESPRESSO MARTINI¬†(can be served non-alcoholic) made with locally roasted coffee
  • Food:¬†PRETZEL + PICKLE¬†is a great lighter appetizer

Bar of Chocolate (first come, first served)

  • A perfect spot to end the night because there are lots of dessert wines and cordials that pair nicely with their rotating dessert options.
  • AFFOGATO¬†– I’m a big fan of their affogato as they offer delicious espresso with a side of gelato and cookie.
  • For anyone who isn’t looking for caffeine at the end of the night, check out their martinis. The¬†German Chocolate Cake martini¬†is rich and delicious for chocolate lovers!

There is so much more to do and eat in Portland, that it should definitely be on your list!

On the heels of highlighting Cairngorms National Park last week, we have another Scottish destination – this time a Hot New Hotel Opening. Whether it’s seeing castles, tasting Scotch, playing golf, going on outdoor adventures or visiting one of your kids studying at St. Andrews, there are lots of great reasons to go to Scotland.

See below for the answer to a question I’ve been asked in various forms over the years – Can I book an international flight without a valid passport at the time of booking?

This week’s inspirational articles include AFARs 20 best safari camps, 10 European events worth traveling for this fall and Vogue’s report on why Sicily should be your next Italian holiday destination.

You’ll also find information on how to travel if you’ve lost your ID, phone or credit card, the disappearing off-season, Delta’s changes to their SkyMiles program and restricting lounge access, surge pricing for pints in the UK and how to cope with post-vacation blues.



  • This week’s highlight – Feel Como
  • Hot New Hotel Opening – Gleneagles Townhouse in Edinburgh
  • Inspiration + Information
  • Q&A – Can I book an international flight without a valid passport at the time of booking?


The breathtaking beauty of Lake Como has inspired artists throughout history and has long attracted many of the world’s royals and Hollywood A-listers (one of the most well known, George Clooney). Of Italy’s northern lakes, Lake Como is considered the most luxurious and attracts the most American visitors.

When visiting Lake Como it is essential to get out on the water and to dine on beautiful, delicious food. Both of those are easily done as Lake Como has hundreds of restaurants to choose from. I have 40+ restaurants on my list to recommend. With those kinds of option, when you are there for just a few days, how can you possibly decide where to go for your precious few meals?

I encourage clients to consider contrast and balance. If you are in Italy for 12 days, you are going to be eating delicious food every day, taking cooking classes and enjoying local wines. Having a full dinner or tasting menus every night will be a lot. So my suggestion is to include some nights where you plan nothing. Maybe order a salad at the bar or light room service. On other nights enjoy Michelin starred tasting menus and local trattorias. And always sprinkle in some special places.

On Lake Como restaurants with beautiful views of the lake or the sunset are a must. Also consider dining out one night in one of the towns – Como, Bellagio or Lecco.

For today’s Highlight I’ve chosen a restaurant in Como.

Feel Como.

This elegant bistro is located in the town centre, and chef Federico Beretta creates dishes made up of ingredients from the local mountains, meadows, woods and inland waters. The sommelier is his wife, Elisa.

You have the option of a tasting menu or a la carte. They will happily provide vegetarian options for those wishing to eat green. Look at the beautiful salad and squash blossoms below (we ate a lot of squash blossoms in the Lake Region this summer – they are delicious!).

Their a la carte menu includes dishes like…

  • millefeuille of porcini mushrooms, truffle and parsley root
  • risotto with four caviars, sweet and sour citron and geranium
  • arctic char, wild garlic and chanterelles
  • Italian meringue, mountain pine and raspberries
  • of course local cheeses

? Feel Como

On your visit to Como, I suggest you go a bit early to shop at some of the boutiques in town. One that’s on my personal list –¬†Nosetta. Their line is “All you need is a really good satchel” and that’s hard to disagree with.

Nosetta creates modern accessories inspired by the Italian life in Lake Como.

? Nosetta

? In June 2022, Gleneagles Townhouse opened in Edinburgh, Scotland. Previously the British Linen Company and then the Bank of Scotland, this history property is located on bustling St. Andrew’s Square.

Why visit Gleneagles Townhouse?

  • You‚Äôll find high ceilings, antique rugs, free-standing tubs and views of downtown Edinburgh in each of the 33 rooms.
  • Dine at¬†The Spence, the all-day restaurant and bar that serves classic dishes with a modern twist, such as burrata with green salsa and truffle gnocchi.
  • The rooftop bar¬†Lamplighters, serves cocktails inspired by author Robert Louis Stevenson and has panoramic views of the city. Cocktails with names like Treasure Island, Kidnapped and An Inland Voyage are on the menu.¬†It’s the place to be after dark.
  • The gym, housed in the old bank vault, has over 40 complimentary classes, a cryotherapy chamber and infrared sauna.
  • Step outside into the heart of Edinburgh where you are in walking distance of the cultural and culinary hot spots.

Of course it comes with the usual perks and VIP treatment when booking your stay through Truvay Travel.

? Gleneagles Townhouse

Reach out to plan your trip to

Q: Can I book an international flight without a passport at the time of booking? Can I book a flight with our existing passport number that is due for renewal and then change the passport number in the reservation once we receive the new passport?

A: Yes you can! The #1 most important thing to get correct is the passport name – the spelling and if there is a middle name it must be included. Many airlines will not allow a name change and your only option may be to cancel and rebook the ticket, often at a much higher price. So make sure to get the name right.

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