Travel Hotel Blog

The Top Ways to Explore Grand Cayman

January 30, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

This article was written by Andys Rent-A-Car

Visiting Grand Cayman? Grand Cayman is a beautiful place to visit, home to some of the most incredible beaches in the world, delicious food, and fun nightlife. It’s the perfect vacation spot for all types of visitors, from couples on their honeymoon to large families with children and groups of friends. Whether you’re visiting the island for the first time or you’re coming back for more, there are many ways you can explore all it has to offer. Here’s a look at the top ways to explore Grand Cayman and how to make it happen.

Rent a Car

One of the most convenient and affordable ways to discover this beautiful island is by car. Grand Caymans car rentals will give you the opportunity to explore the island at your own pace. With your own car, you don’t have to be restricted by the times of a tour bus or get stuck in a crowded taxi. Having a vehicle allows you to reach nearly any destination on the island. It also allows you to see the island via a short road trip.

When it’s time to rent a car, we recommend booking it through Andys Rent-A-Car because it will be affordable and you will have a larger selection of vehicles to choose from.

Dive In

Perhaps the most adventurous way to explore the island, getting in the water is a fun and practical way to see what the island has in store under the sea. If you’re an experienced diver, you will be pleased to know that the island has 159 spots to choose from. Whether you go swimming, snorkeling, or scuba diving, it’s worth getting your toes wet in Grand Cayman. A dip into the water might get you up close and personal to stingrays and a wide variety of tropical fish. In fact, Stingray City has the “World best 12 Foot Dive.”

Use Your Legs

Another way to see Grand Cayman is by foot. Grand Cayman offers many hiking opportunities for travelers who want to view the plants and animals up close. A hike in the area might take you to the Silver Thatch Palm, mangrove forests, Wild banana Orchids, or the Cayman Parrot. You can also use binoculars to catch a glimpse of birds in the area. But you don’t have to go on a hike to experience the island by foot. You can also take a relaxing stroll at one of the island’s many beaches, such as Seven Mile Beach.


Andys Rent-A-Car is a local car rental company in Grand Cayman. Book your Grand Cayman rent a car through Andys to get great deals on jeeps, vans, and SUVs. Grand Cayman car rentals also include convertibles.

Finding the Best Time to Go to Bora Bora

January 24, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

This article was written by Phineas Upham,

The island of Bora Bora is a calm 80 degrees all year long. With these kinds of temperatures, the best time to go to Bora Bora is all year. You can swim in the crystal clear waters, or spend time on the warm beaches.

Though Bora Bora is a part of the tropics, the heat on the island is not extreme. A gentle breeze from the South Pacific Ocean and some trade winds from the north east help to cool things down. The best part is that night-time dwellers don’t have to worry about temperatures dropping off in the evening. You can expect Bora Bora nights to be just as balmy and warm as the days.

Seasons in Bora Bora

Bora Bora’s climate is divided into just two seasons: summer and winter. The climate is further complicated for those in the Northern Hemisphere. Our winter is summer for Bora Bora, so booking a trip in January puts you smack in the center of summer.

When is the Best Time to Go to Bora Bora?

So, which of the two seasons is the best for visiting Bora Bora? The truth is that any time of year is great for this island paradise. It’s such a dream destination that you might consider travelling during the off season just to save money. Couples travel all year long to enjoy honeymoons in Bora Bora, and the island is the perfect get away from city life. If winter is giving you the blues, give your travel agent a call and see if you can fly South for the winter.

Also see some pics from Bora Bora by Phin Upham on Daily Motion:

Phin Upham Presents Bora Bora by dm_52022698b459b

About the Author: Phineas Upham is an investor at a family office/hedgefund, where he focuses on special situation illiquid investing. Before this position, Phineas Upham was working at Morgan Stanley in the Media & Technology group. You may contact Phineas on his Twitter page.

Come See Great Falls Park

January 24, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

There are a number of reasons to visit Virginia. Of course, a number of people come to find real estate in Henrico County, VA but there are plenty of other reasons to come take a visit as well. Great Falls Park is definitely one of them.


If you’re not familiar with the area, Great Falls Park offers 800 acres of American’s beauty at its finest, all along the Potomac River. This is easily one of the most visually stunning places in the DC metropolitan area, if not the entire country. Of course, the history surrounding the park doesn’t hurt either if you’re looking for some great stories or simply a better appreciation of how America came to be.


When you’re inside amongst the trees, cliffs and wildlife, you’ll completely forget how close you are to the downtown DC area and all its urban fixtures.


There are two separate sections as well, so you’ll want to do some research beforehand unless you want to see both. There’s the Maryland side and a Virginia side. Both are equally gorgeous.


Even if you don’t have a home in Richmond Virginia, you’ll find plenty of accommodations throughout the state, especially nearby DC and Great Falls Park. Bring your hiking gear to make the most of your time and a camera so you can show all your friends the beautiful scenery this national park entails.


Article submitted by Relocate to Richmond. They’re a realty group that has helped countless people find Henrico County homes to make their own.

Fun Facts about Oktoberfest

January 17, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

Posted By Samuel Phineas Upham

Oktoberfest is one of the largest festivals in the entire world. The annual celebration in Munich is the highlight of any trip, and visitors will drink some of the finest brews on the planet. There are several tours of the Oktoberfest grounds, but for those unable to make the trip here are some fun facts to make you stop and wonder.


During the two weeks of Oktoberfest, over 6-million people will visit the fairgrounds. This volume of humans requires tons of food and drink. Literally. Over 500,000 roasted chickens will be consumed along with 120,000 sausage pairs and 6-million liters of beer.


For two months leading up to Oktoberfest, construction crews will be hard at work designing the fairgrounds for the gathering. During this time, workers will erect tents, roller coasters and carnival-style attractions. After the festival, workers will stay on hand for a month to finish disassembling everything. They will also have plenty of facilities on hand, over 900 toilets and a full kilometer of urinal troughs.

Lost and Found

As you can imagine, with so many people crossing into Munich there are bound to be lost items. Oktoberfest’s lost and found typically reaches the almost half-a-million mark. One of the more unusual items recovered amongst the cell phones and eye glasses? A set of dentures.


The bonus is actually quite an accomplishment. Bavarian Waitress Anita Schwarz carried 90 lbs worth of full beer steins for 40 meters without spilling a single drop. We hope she was tipped well for that incredible feat.

About the Author: Samuel Phineas Upham is an investor at a family office/ hedgefund, where he focuses on special situation illiquid investing. Before this position, Phin Upham was working at Morgan Stanley in the Media & Technology group. You may contact Phin on his Samuel Phineas Upham website or LinkedIn.

Planning Your Perfect Poconos Honeymoon

January 16, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

When you’re planning the trip after your wedding, you probably have a million honeymoon vacations to choose from. Many take time to travel through Europe, others will have a tropical destination in mind. But if you speed to the thousands who visit the Poconos each year, you’ll find it’s the many Pennsylvania resorts located there are some of the best in the country.

The Poconos has a ton to offer, no matter what time of year you plan on visiting. If you have a winter wedding, however, you’ll find more to do in the Poconos than just about anywhere else

If you and your fiancé enjoy winter sports, for example, you’ll have a ton of options to choose from. The Poconos offers some of the best skiing and snowboarding on all of the East coast.

Of course, if you and yours like to snowmobile, you won’t lack for options in that regard either. There are even more snowmobile trails to explore and plenty of places to rent vehicles from.

One fun option that’s totally unique is taking a dogsled trip instead. Perhaps the most ancient form of travel in North America, dog sledding is a time honored tradition you’ll find alive and well in the Poconos over the winter.

There’s still plenty you can do on a honeymoon in the Poconos when the weather is nice too. The area’s unsurpassed natural beauty will make it nearly impossible to leave.


Article submitted by Cove Pocono Resorts. The company offers a number of honeymoon resorts in the Poconos area for honeymoons and romantic vacations

The Five Active Volcanoes on Hawaiian Land

January 13, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

Posted By Samuel Phineas Upham

The Hawaiian islands are an ever changing land mass due to the active volcanoes that dot the landscape. Astronauts once trained for voyages to the moon traversing the volcanic landscape of the Hawaiian islands. Here are some facts on Hawaii’s remaining active volcanoes.


This volcanoe’s name actually translates to “the long one” and estimates put Loihi at about 3000 meters high. Even with its massive scale the volcano has still not reached sea level, which geologists estimate will take almost 10,000 years.


Kilauea is one of the world’s most active volcanoes, but it also has the longest eruptions. The current eruption began on January of 1983, and it is still continuing today. There was also an active lava lake for almost 100 years!

Mauna Loa

Since 1900, Mauna Loa has seen 15 eruptions that last anywhere from a few days to over 140. Since 1950, the volcano has only seen two eruptions, one of which lasted for a single day. Almost all of these eruptions begin at the summit.


The town of Kailua sits on the southwest flank of this active volcano that last erupted in 1801. A series of earthquakes in 1929 can trace their roots back to magma movement. This volcano has been the subject of geological study since 1980 when the mountain stopped expanding.


This volcano started over a million years ago on the ocean floor. Its last eruption was in 1790, but the volcano is still considered active.

About the Author: Samuel Phineas Upham is an investor at a family office/ hedgefund, where he focuses on special situation illiquid investing. Before this position, Phin Upham was working at Morgan Stanley in the Media & Technology group. You may contact Phin on his Samuel Phineas Upham website or LinkedIn.

Hawaii’s Best Kept Secrets

January 10, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

Posted By Samuel Phineas Upham

Everyone knows about the gleaming beaches of Hawaii’s islands, but the locals have some secrets they haven’t told you. Some of the best spots for hiking or eating are closely guarded secrets. Now you can check out these local hot spots and blend in with the natives on your next trip to the islands.

Guri Guri

Like a cross between shaved ice and gelato, guri guri (pronounced “goodie goodie”) is a unique dessert one can only find in Hawaii. If you find your way to Kahului, Maui, check out Tasaka Guri Guri for the authentic experience. It’s a family tradition that’s been going for 100 years strong!

Diamond Head Hike

You can hike up to the top of Diamond Head crater in about 45 minutes. When you reach the top you’re treated to a spectacular view of Waikkiki and its coastline. The view is gorgeous even on an overcast day, and there is nothing like ascending a mountain to get you ready to face the day.

Farmer’s Markets

There are farmer’s markets all over the island that bring some native foods to the populace that you can’t get at restaurants or hotels. Try some of the honey, or the fresh made fish if you want some authentic tastes.


Hawaii goes through a lot of rainstorms, leaving behind more than a few rainbows. On any given day, from the right vantage point, you’re likely to see many rainbows around the islands.

About the Author: Samuel Phineas Upham is an investor at a family office/ hedgefund, where he focuses on special situation illiquid investing. Before this position, Phin Upham was working at Morgan Stanley in the Media & Technology group. You may contact Phin on his Samuel Phineas Upham website or Twitter.

Cultural Faux Pas in New Orleans

January 7, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

Submitted By Phin Upham

Every region has their own set of cultural faux pas (don’t get caught calling San Francisco “Cisco”). These small gaffes immediately designate you as the tourist. If you’re looking for the insider’s experience of New Orleans, avoid these conversational missteps.


It’s not “N’awlins” or “New Or-leens.” The correct pronounciation is hard to convey phonetically, but it sounds like “Nu-ah-luns” and “New Ahr-luns” are more accepted.

“Ya’ll” vs. “You All”

If you don’t want to be branded as the dreaded “Yank,” work “ya’ll” into your conversations. For city folk, the saying might seem odd rolling off the tongue, but it helps you fit in. Most New Orleanians are friendly people, so open with language they are familiar with and they will be more receptive.

Mardi Gras Misconceptions

Everyone has heard the stories about the women who flash for beads on Mardi Gras. They do exist, but outside of Bourbon Street and the French Quarter that behavior is looked down upon. Mardi Gras is actually a family holiday, believe it or not. Cops, bystanders and people on floats tend to look down upon people who expose themselves in front of children. Don’t expect beads, expect cuffs. Instead, try shouting “Hey, throw me something mister!”

Most tourists also incorrectly believe that Mardi Gras lasts for days at a time. In truth, the event spans a single day, but the festivities go from January 6th to “Fat Tuesday.” The season is known as “Carnival” or “Carnival Season.” In the most recent years locals have taken to calling the day before Mardi Gras “Lundi Gras.”

Phin Upham is an investor from NYC and SF. You may contact Phin on his Phin Upham website or Twitter page.

Vacation Planning Tips

January 6, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

Vacations can be both exciting and stressful.  Vacations are a great way to unwind and let go of worries and responsibilities temporarily.  However, if improperly planned, it’s easy to run into vacation nightmares such as overspending.

No one wants to feel stressed while on vacation.  Here are some important tips to follow in order to have your vacation go off without a hitch:

1) Plan ahead: Perhaps the most crucial thing about vacation planning is to actually do it!  The earlier you begin planning, the better chance you have of having your first-pick of hotel rooms, flights, and excursion activities.  When planning ahead, it’s easy to find great deals and discounts which can save you hundreds or more on your total vacation cost.  For example, if you plan on renting a car for your Cayman Islands vacation, research rental cars in Grand Cayman today!

2) Do your location research: In addition to planning your actual vacation, it’s essential to familiarize yourself with the location you’re about to visit.  Look up the weather patterns, activities, local prices, safety concerns, and perhaps even a little bit about the history.  Researching where you’re going can help to eliminate unfortunate surprises.

3) Make a budget: Vacations can end up costing a lot of money.  While on vacation, it’s easy to throw caution to the wind and spend money frivolously.  Constructing a budget can help you use your money wisely.  One of the best ways to budget is to do it by the day or by category such as food and activities.  For example, you could set a budget for transportation and research rental cars in Grand Cayman.

4) Track your outflow: Once you’re on your vacation, you need to keep track of your expenses and attempt to stick to the budget.  It’s easy to go on vacation and forget all about keeping a budget, but it’s important to monitor your spending so that you don’t end up stressed after your vacation.  Most people spend way too much on vacation which leaves them feeling guilty when they get back home.

Follow these easy steps and your vacation will surely be everything you hoped for.  Planning ahead and being responsible (even on vacation) will allow you to relax and truly enjoy yourself without hassles.  In fact, if you do this for one vacation, you can easily figure out how to make every vacation a wonderful experience.


Guest post is provided by Andys Rent-A-Car, the top rent-a-car in Grand Cayman.  Check out their website for more information.

How One Hong Kong Entrepreneur is Disrupting Battery Tech

January 2, 2014 by · Leave a Comment 

Posted by Samuel Phineas Upham

A new Hong Kong based hardware company called “Digi-Care” is attempting to disrupt battery technology. Using a sleek piece of hardware called the ERI, CEO Jimmy Liao hopes to bring fitness into the modern age. His wearable wrist watch will record walking distances, heart rate, temperatures and more. Liao claims you only need to charge the device twice.

How ERI Works

The consumer-grade fitness tracker substitutes the usual GPS technology that powers smart phone apps in favor of satellite-based navigation. The wristband uses a magnetometer to field user data from the Earth’s magnetic field. The band features a built in compass that tracks the user’s direction, then that data is run through an algorithm and stored on the user’s smart phone.

Disrupting Battery Life

According to CEO Jimmy Liao, ERI will deliver longer battery life through clever hardware installations. Instead of relying on GPS, which attempts to retrieve satellite data through an antenna, the ERI will use a lightweight body. The battery is painstakingly cut to fit each part of the watch band, as opposed to being housed in the watch face. An NFC chip will enable easy communication between iOS, Android and Mac OS platforms, with the promise of Windows 8.1 to come.

ERI seems comfortable as a part of the wearable tech space, letting other platforms do the heavy lifting while providing a sleek solution to a simple problem.