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Fez, Morocco, Trip Plans & Vacation Ideas

The ancient city of Fez beckons the traveler with a plethora of medieval delights, sights, sounds and sensory experiences that heartily encompass the soul of old Morocco. The walled city (dating to the ninth century) remains devoted to its history and culture. Home to hundreds of mosques, the city embraces stately Muslim traditions while showcasing for visitors such attractions as exquisite architectural wonders and a spicy cuisine all its own. A labyrinth of mysticism, sections of Fez take the visitor back in time hundreds of years, an inviting and compelling trip to the past. While in Fez, stay in a traditional riad house, take an authentic cooking class and tour a stunning medersa, all located in the famous Medina of Fez.

Fez, Morocco Riad Saada Fez

Located in the heart of the Fez Medina, this extraordinary guest house is a heritage site available for rental. Two families live here and assist with all aspects of the guest stay including cooking and sightseeing. They aim to give the visitor a more authentic experience of Morocco via their beautiful and historic riad house, which comes complete with all amenities. Enjoy a home-cooked meal with such traditional choices as couscous with lamb or beef and seasonal vegetables or pigeon tajine with peas.

Riad Saada Fes
Rabia et Pierre Mure
44 Bois du Luget
33290 LE PIAN MEDOC
011 (+33) 5 56 70 29 56
www.riadsaada.com/

Medersa el-Attarine

Don’t miss the beautifully decorated Medersa el-Attarine (also known as Attarine Madrasa), located by the spice and perfume market in the Medina of Fez. (A madrasa is a religious school.) The Medersa el-Attarine, with its spectacular rectangular courtyard, was commissioned by the Marinid Sultan Ya’qub Abu Said Uthman II, and completed in 1325. It features masterpieces in tile, centering around the word “Allah” in calligraphy and expanding to fill the confines of the courtyard.

Fez Cooking Class

Known as the capital of Moroccan cuisine, Fez is the ideal place to take a class in Moroccan cooking. You’ll learn traditional methods of preparing pastilla, couscous, harira and other dishes in this hands-on class that begins with a trip to the souks, or local marketplace, for fresh ingredients. It’s a complete Fez cooking and eating experience.

The ancient city of Fez beckons the traveler with a plethora of medieval delights, sights, sounds and sensory experiences that heartily encompass the soul of old Morocco. The walled city (dating to the ninth century) remains devoted to its history and culture. Home to hundreds of mosques, the city embraces stately Muslim traditions while showcasing for visitors such attractions as exquisite architectural wonders and a spicy cuisine all its own. A labyrinth of mysticism, sections of Fez take the visitor back in time hundreds of years, an inviting and compelling trip to the past. While in Fez, stay in a traditional riad house, take an authentic cooking class and tour a stunning medersa, all located in the famous Medina of Fez.

Fez, Morocco Riad Saada Fez

Located in the heart of the Fez Medina, this extraordinary guest house is a heritage site available for rental. Two families live here and assist with all aspects of the guest stay including cooking and sightseeing. They aim to give the visitor a more authentic experience of Morocco via their beautiful and historic riad house, which comes complete with all amenities. Enjoy a home-cooked meal with such traditional choices as couscous with lamb or beef and seasonal vegetables or pigeon tajine with peas.

Riad Saada Fes
Rabia et Pierre Mure
44 Bois du Luget
33290 LE PIAN MEDOC
011 (+33) 5 56 70 29 56
www.riadsaada.com/

Medersa el-Attarine

Don’t miss the beautifully decorated Medersa el-Attarine (also known as Attarine Madrasa), located by the spice and perfume market in the Medina of Fez. (A madrasa is a religious school.) The Medersa el-Attarine, with its spectacular rectangular courtyard, was commissioned by the Marinid Sultan Ya’qub Abu Said Uthman II, and completed in 1325. It features masterpieces in tile, centering around the word “Allah” in calligraphy and expanding to fill the confines of the courtyard.

Fez Cooking Class

Known as the capital of Moroccan cuisine, Fez is the ideal place to take a class in Moroccan cooking. You’ll learn traditional methods of preparing pastilla, couscous, harira and other dishes in this hands-on class that begins with a trip to the souks, or local marketplace, for fresh ingredients. It’s a complete Fez cooking and eating experience.

Everyone loves Mario. He hosts the popular Food Network shows “Ciao America,” “Molto Mario” and appears on the “Iron Chef America” for exciting culinary battles with other top chefs. In his Columbo style rumpled shorts and rolled up sleeves, this burly red-headed Italian chef with saffron stained fingers quickly grows on you. His high paced, informative shows peak a desire to taste these amazing dishes he prepares. If you want to try his excellent culinary fare without trying to cook it yourself, it is available in restaurants in Las Vegas, Nevada and Los Angeles, California, and in New York. New York locals and visitors recommend you try these highly favored (or highly flavored) Mario Batali New York Restaurants.

Babbo Ristorante

Mario’s original Babbo Ristorante, located in Greenwich Village, is one place you do not want to miss while in New York. Reserve one month in advance, if you know when you will be in town, and walk-ins are welcome, but expect to wait. The menu changes nightly, and it is far from ordinary Italian gourmet food, exquisitely prepared and presented. The Italian wine list is around 20 pages, with reasonably priced wines by the quartino. The ambiance is beautiful, busy, yet romantic for two, and the waitstaff and sommeliers are attentive and eager to make your experience memorable. To suggest what to eat seems silly, because everything is wonderful, but if you are in the mood for hand made pasta, try the Chianti stained pappardelle with wild boar ragu, or black spaghetti with sea urchin. After a possible four courses, leave room for desserts. The wonderful maple and mascarpone cheesecake will end the evening perfectly.

Babbo Ristorante
110 Waverly Place
New York, NY 10011
(212) 777-0303
babbonyc.com

Mario Batali Restaurants in New York

Lupa

For a taste of late night Roman styled trattoria, Lupa is the place to dine. The staff is friendly, casual dress is fine and it is open from noon to midnight. This is a great after-theater place to unwind and try some delicious food. Its excellent waitstaff, seasonal menu and extensive wine list makes Lupa a perfect place to bring a date. Try their piatto del giorno (plate of the day) for a treat, or go all out and select from antipasti such as prosciutto di parma or try an antipasti sampler for $25. For a first course, try linguine and clams with fennel and sopressatta, and if there is room for seconds, try the fluke with spinach and fried shallots. The formaggi, or cheese sampler is a great way to finish the evening with a nice wine, or end with a dessert wine from its varied selection. Be prepared to spend at least $30 to $50 per person for food.

If you are planning a private party, Lupa has two fixed-price dinner menus to select from and can accommodate between seven and 30 people. Call Marcella for daytime private party options as well.

Lupa
170 Thompson St.
New York, NY 10012
(212) 982-5089
luparestaurant.com

Esca

If you love seafood, get ready for an amazing dining experience at Esca, for the tastes of southern Italy. Located in the theater district of Times Square, this always fresh, always sophisticated, extremely delicious gourmet restaurant delivers satisfaction in every way. As you might expect, the menu is driven by the fresh fish market of the day, and rest assured whatever is available will excite the palate. Try the Branzino per Due, a whole Mediterranean sea-bass for two cooked in sea salt, or experience the crudo (raw) menu. Try the crudo tasting for six unique samplings of raw seafood for just $30. For a walk on the wild side try a handmade pasta dish of spaghetti that you are certain to find original with chilies, mint and a 1-pound lobster.

For a truly exquisite feast of flavors dive into their tasting menu and expect to sample gourmet dishes for over two hours for just $75 per person or $120 with wine pairings. Esca is business casual open for lunch until 2:30 pm, and dinner begins at five o’clock.

Esca
402 West 43rd Street
New York, NY 10036-6322
(212) 564-7272
esca-nyc.com

Casa Mono

Casa Mono is a Mario Batali Spanish taverna with a wine list of more than 600 varietals to choose from and several sherries. Reserve a month in advance or walk in and enjoy a meal at the dining counter. Enjoy tapas-style dining here along with traditional entrees and appetizers. The menu changes often, keeping locals on their toes in a quaint, small and casual atmosphere. It is open from noon to midnight and you can expect to pay between $9 and $20 per plate.

Casa Mono
52 Irving Place
New York, NY 10003
(212) 253-2773
casamononyc.com

Bar Jamon

This is Mario’s smaller version of Casa Mono, located just adjacent from each other. Bar Jamon is more of a bar atmosphere and a little less expensive Spanish tapas. This is a wonderfully casual spot to come and enjoy some trendy dishes. Local foodies love frequenting here, and the wine list is great to enjoy with their Spanish hams, cheeses and small plates.

Bar Jamon
52 Irving Place
New York, NY 10003
(212) 253-2773
barjamonnyc.com

Mario Batali Restaurants in New York

Del Posto

This is another high-class Batali restaurant with a menu featuring Italy’s regional variations. They call the Italian American cooking style “cucina classica,” or classic Italian, producing legitimate traditional Italian gourmet cuisine. Dress is formal, suit jacket preferred, and expect to pay $50 and up per person. Start with lobster salad fra diavola with broccoli rabe and dried orange, and finish with Dover sole with chestnuts, watercress, black truffles and trumpets. This is another restaurant accepting reservations one-month in advance, and walk-ins or same-day reservations are available in the Enoteca (wine cellar). Private rooms are available for groups of 12 to 250 people.

Del Posto
85 Tenth Ave.
New York, NY 10011
(212) 497-8090
delposto.com

OTTO Enoteca Pizzeria

OTTO offers affordable pizza and pasta meals and is kid friendly with a warm atmosphere in Greenwich Village. Find OTTO on 8th Street in the One, Fifth Avenue building. It has a unique olive oil gelato, which is well worth trying, and an all-Italian wine list with more than 700 bottles from which to choose and enjoy with your meal.

OTTO Enoteca Pizzeria
1 Fifth Ave.
New York, NY 10003-4312
(212) 995-9559
ottopizzeria.com

The Spotted Pig

The Spotted Pig serves seasonal British and Italian cuisine with local fresh ingredients, and it is open until 2 a.m. every day. Street parking is usually available, and a parking lot is located across Greenwich Street. Walk-ins are welcome, but call ahead to find out the approximate wait time. The menu is affordable and interesting. Try the Roquefort burger with shoestring fries and your choice of vegetable with a beer, or enjoy a bottle of wine from the varied list. This is a nice pub atmosphere with some true fatty British pub food to match.

The Spotted Pig
314 West 11th St.
at Greenwich Street
New York, NY 10014
(212) 620-0393
thespottedpig.com

IRELANDIf you want to move to Ireland, you could use to understand, or at least to know about two things in particular: customs and superstitions. When they greet someone, the Irish use general phrases such as “Hello” or “how are you?”. Not few will be the situations when you will hear people saying “Dia dhuit”, which means “May the Lord be With You”. When you’re talking to someone look him in the eyes because this will earn his trust. If you’re invited into an Irish home, make sure that you appear on time. The Irish are proud about their sense of humor and they are always teasing their friends, so, if you’re teased, do not take it too seriously.

Regarding the habits of the business world, it’s good to shake hands with all who attend a session, both in the beginning and in the end of it. Many business people have business cards, so if you give someone your cars and you IRELANDwill not get another one back, don’t feel offended. In general, business is made in usual places, such as restaurants and pubs. Similarly, the custom is to participate to discussions, because it is assumed that all need to be involved. Irish business culture is known to be much more relaxed than in many other places in Europe.

Many of us are familiar with such clichés as “luck of the Irish”, “bucket of gold” or “four leaf clover”, but not many of us know the practical information to move to Ireland. Here are some interesting examples: throwing coins on the side of a ship brings the storm and the water that washes the feet should never be thrown during the night. During a storm, make sure you’ve covered or flipped all the mirrors in the house. When someone buy a car, you should give him money.

The winter months can be some of the most difficult during which to consistently locate and catch bass. During this time of year, the water is cold and the metabolism of the fish is very slow. As a result, the bass do not need to eat much and will not expend much energy chasing down a meal. However, for those anglers who want to fish year-round, there are bass to be caught in the winter.

Bass Fishing Tips for the Winter

Find the Bass

Since the water temperature is so cold, bass are not likely to chase a bait that is moving quickly. As a result, the spinnerbaits and lipless crankbaits that you relied upon to find fish when the water was warmer are all but useless now. The bass will take a meal if they can get it, but they will not work too hard to get it. As a result, slow-moving lures like large plastic worms, jigs and pigs, jigging spoons and crankbaits with a slow, wide wobble are best during the winter. But since you are fishing with slow-moving lures, you need to find the bass before you begin fishing. A fishfinder is particularly helpful. Look around points, ridges and humps that are near the main creek channel. Clear-water areas also tend to produce better than stained- or dirty-water areas. Look for bait fish, too, like shad. The bass may not chase them all day long, but they will be near their food sources.

Bass Fishing Tips for the Winter

Slow Fish

A spinner-bait that zooms by a bass’s nose likely will not draw a second look from the fish, but a big jig and pig that weighs 1/2-oz. or more and is retrieved slowly along the bottom might be just the ticket. Since bass have to expend energy to eat, and since they do not have much extra energy when the water is cold in the winter, choose a large, slow-moving bait. The bass will see that it is moving slow, so it should be easy to catch, and also that it is big, so the bass does not have to eat again for a while.

Bass Fishing Tips for the WinterDrop a Spoon

Jigging spoons can be especially productive in the winter, because bass are often found in schools. Once anglers locate those schools of bass, dropping a jigging spoon into the school and lifting up and letting it drop is a good way to entice bass to bite. Since anglers fish a jigging spoon in a vertical fashion, they also can fish very specific areas that are holding bass. The distance you raise and lower the jigging spoon is an important part of getting bass to bite. Experiment until the bass let you know which they prefer.

Temper Your Expectations

The bass angler who heads to the water in the winter and expects to catch large numbers of bass is likely to be disappointed. Most anglers who fish during the winter months consider a couple of quality bass per day to be pretty good.

People often vacation in the Hamptons to see and be seen, but the ocean, beaches, and beautiful surroundings make it a delightful holiday destination. If you want to go deep-sea fishing, boating, or just sightseeing, there are dozens of different hotels in the area, but the best is the Southampton Inn.

Southampton Inn
91 Hill Street
Southampton, NY 11968
Tel: (631) 283-6500
southamptoninn.com

Accommodations

The Southampton Inn offers ninety different guestrooms, all of which are nonsmoking. The rooms come with refrigerators, wireless Internet access, privately controlled air conditioners and color television with cable. The two-room master suite has separate sleeping and sitting areas and a double queen bedroom with two separate beds. Traditional or standard rooms and deluxe rooms have a queen or king size bed with a specialty mattress for additional comfort. All rooms are differently decorated for a unique feel.

The Best Hotel in Southampton

Inn Features

The hotel offers guests complimentary snacks and drinks in the afternoon and a shuttle to Cooper’s beach. The hotel also boasts a tennis court, heated outdoor swimming pool, shuffleboard, horseshoes, croquet and other lawn games. There’s a ballroom, meeting spaces and boardrooms for a total of 6,000 square feet of additional space beyond the guestrooms. The inn also provides special guestrooms for those with disabilities.

OSO

OSO is the name of the award-winning restaurant located at the hotel. Breakfast is served seven days a week, and dinner is served every day except Sunday; poolside lunches are also served. The inn offers a budget-friendly fixed-price dinner menu where guests can try three courses for a set price. The restaurant has its live music every Friday night.

The Best Hotel in SouthamptonSpecials

Throughout the year the hotel offers special packages and deals for guests, often incorporating local events and attractions. For example, the inn offers a special price for guests who want a room and tickets for the Hampton Classic Horse Show. Other offers include a couples’ package with spa treatments at a nearby day spa, and a theater package with dinner and drinks as well as two tickets to a performance at the local theater.

The Best Hotel in Southampton

Nearby Attractions

The hotel is conveniently located near some popular attractions in Southampton. Cooper’s Beach is open throughout the year and is less than a mile from the hotel. The inn is close to the Morton Wildlife Refuge and the Nature Conservatory, where guests can bird-watch. Guests may visit the Splish Splash water park or Rotations where they can rent a bicycle for the day. There’s also the Whaling Museum and Montauk Point Lighthouse Museum in the Hamptons as well as golf courses, fishing and horseback riding.