Travel Expert’s Top Tips: From Wine Tasting to Casa Batlló
Everyone has their own favorite style of traveling and so does each of our team members! In this new series, you will see how the people behind The Trip Boutique enjoy exploring the world. Today we introduce our team member Juliana who has worked in the travel industry for over twenty years and traveled to more than forty countries. As a true expert in her field, she knows how to get the maximum enjoyment out of every trip. Find out more about wine tasting, Kir Royale, Magic Nights, Zürcher Geschnetzeltes, and other Juliana’s recommendations below.
A glass of wine a day keeps the doctor away. Plus, it is a great way to get into a conversation with locals and learn more about their mentality. ‘Wine tasting is something I often do while on holidays. Taking a bottle with you as a souvenir is also a great way to remember your travels. Although we live in such a globalized world, you can hardly buy local wines in your regular supermarket. So if you want to bring something special to share with your family and friends back home, wine is always a safe bet.’ Preserving the unique taste of that magical sunset in Tuscany or dinner in Paris in a bottle is something Juliana truly swears by – she even named her dog Merlot!
Merlot – Juliana named her dog after her favorite wine!
Local Specialties in Tourist Hotspots
It’s not just the off-center places that hide the crème-de-la-crème of authentic cultural experiences every city has to offer. The trick is to dig deeper instead of merely scratching the surface. ‘In Paris, I fell in love with Ladurée. Although it's the one at Champs-Élysées, so not really a low-key location, it has something special not many people know about: in the very back of the café, there is a great bar in art nouveau style where they serve a delicious Kir Royale with a macaron on the side.’ In case you didn’t know, Kir Royale is a typical French cocktail, a mix of crème de cassis and champagne – you probably cannot get more Parisian than that!
Before setting out on the road, Juliana really does her homework. ‘I like to do a little bit of everything – asking my friends, reaching out to locals, and researching my destination as much as I can.’ We love that Juliana brings this passion for planning to our team; however, she also admits that such extensive preparation is not for everyone. ‘Even though I am really happy to have a plan once I get to my destination, it takes a lot of time and effort. That’s why I recommend The Trip Boutique to anyone who complains about organizing their vacation!’
Being prepared helped her to discover many hidden gems other people just pass by, unaware. ‘I love architecture and I love Gaudí. So when I lived in Barcelona, I of course visited all the famous spots like Park Güel, Sagrada Familia, and La Pedrera. But my favorite actually is the lesser-known Casa Batlló. This is a house Gaudí renovated between 1904–1906 for a rich sponsor. It is absolutely stunning, yet a lot of people miss it because they simply don’t know about it!’ Today, Casa Batlló serves as a museum and every summer you can also enjoy the “Magic Nights” festival on its rooftop.
Juliana in front of La Pedrera.
Home Away from Home
Every once in a while, being on the road can bring about some homesickness. This is especially true if you’ve just moved to a new country and need some time to adjust. However, the world is smaller than we think and so we might be surprised to find similarities between the local culture and our own. ‘In Zurich, there is a popular restaurant called Zeughauskeller situated in the old town. One of the meals on their menu I particularly like is Zürcher Geschnetzeltes which reminds me so much of the Brazilian beef stroganoff!’ Situated in a fifteenth-century building, the restaurant breathes a unique medieval atmosphere of Switzerland’s past. Since Zeughauskeller offers traditional Swiss dishes, it attracts both local and international guests – a great mix reflecting the spirit of Zurich!
Juliana was born in Sao Paulo, Brazil, where she studied Business and Hospitality Management. She is also a current Global Executive MBA Candidate. When she is not at The Trip Boutique scaling up the supply of interesting places, she enjoys hiking with her dog Merlot and surfing. Read more about Juliana here or discover more about our team members and read their personal travel stories!
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