Letters | August 2007
I agree that a night at The Ritz ['Puttin' on the Ritz,' June] can be a priceless experience. A number of years ago I splurged and treated myself to two nights there; I felt pampered and cared for from the time I arrived until I was whisked away to the airport in their black Mercedes. At one point I asked a question of the concierge and he replied, "Whatever you wish for, we will accommodate." The staff's attentive service is truly at a higher level.—Susan Switch, Ont.
Taking the Waters
Daniel Mendelsohn's elegant piece, "Bath Time" [June], brought back happy memories of my wedding trip in 1966, which included visits to both Marienbad and Karlsbad, and even earlier memories of growing up in the Shenandoah Valley, where the mountains were sprinkled with resorts with baths and springs in their names. Before air conditioning, Virginians came to the mountains to escape the summer heat, to take the waters, and, yes, as at Marienbad, sometimes even "because they wanted to conceive."—John R. Roberson, Old Greenwich, Conn.
A Milestone in Mexico
I was married in May at Casa Magna, Pablo Escobar's former beach house ["Villa Escobar," June]. While walking the hallways of the house I vacillated between being quite spooked and feeling rather serene and peaceful. Unfortunately, our rooms were not ready when we arrived and our event was poorly scheduled, but thankfully there were several capable staff members available on-site to help. I hope the owner now understands how important it is to create a unique experience that guests will want to return to.—Amy Swift, Los Angeles, Calif.
Like Valerie Waterhouse, my husband and I hit the outlets in Tuscany several years ago ["Italy's Designer Secrets," June]. Prada was great for cashmere sweaters and travel bags. The other outlet in the area—which was not included in the article—is the Mall in Leccio-Reggello. Shoppers can find Gucci, YSL, and Bottega there, as well as Loro Piana and Armani. I was delighted to see that there is a Bulgari outlet in Rome. Now I can't wait to return!—Hanna Seiman, Marlboro, N.J.
I enjoyed Charles Gandee's "Motel Chic" [June]. The photos were colorful and witty and reminded me of 1950's television. I admire the motel owners for incorporating kitsch into stylish destinations. Some travelers are just looking for fun.—Kyle Dyer,Huntington, W. Va.
The Green-Hotel Effect
Allison Arieff's piece about the impact of sustainability on hotels ["The Greenhouse Effect," June] has inspired me to look for socially conscious investment opportunities in the hospitality supply-chain business. I need to do my part—when at home, when I work, and while I travel.—Elliot Reinfeld, Sherman Oaks, Calif.
Reader's Find: Colombia
I visited the three-room Casa El Carretero [10B–18 Calle del Carretero; 415/508-3927; casaelcarretero.com; doubles from $150] in Cartagena and remain enchanted by this beautiful Indonesian-inspired hotel. The hosts make dinner reservations nightly, guests enjoy jazz and salsa at the rooftop pool, and children play in the streets of the Plaza de la Trinidad, a 17th-century Spanish plaza just across the street.—Carlos Restrepo, San Francisco, Calif.