I was in Bergen on a short business trip and I thought I´d write a couple of posts about this town I love so much. An old Hanseatic harbor situated on the West coast of Norway, Bergen has got charm galore. The city center is contained by 7 mountains and preserves a small town atmosphere with wooden houses, narrow streets and lane ways, a meat market and a fish market, coffee shops and stores. It expands before your eyes as houses seem to be clinging to the mountain back. Nature is majestic and so is the architecture. And the people are so much more polite than the average Norwegian, you wouldn´t believe it!

Bergen was my adoptive home under a 3 months´trial in 2012 and I fell in love with it at once. Unfortunately, the weather is pretty bad due to the town´s geographical position- it´s raining cats and dogs and not only once in a while, either. And since I wasn´t in luck yesterday, I had to do my best with my camera and frozen feet and defeated the rain and my need to stay indoors by the fireplace.

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It´s nice to leave home along with one´s comfort zone once in a while. It´s so refreshing to get some new impulses from the change of architecture, dialect, food and weather! And I don´t know about you, but I love sleeping in hotels! And Nordic Choice was really nice, it really felt like something else! Concrete, modern art, brand new. Had it not been for the haunting mirrors that added 10 kg to my normal weight, I wouldn´t have anything to complain about. 😉

I enjoyed 7 degrees outside and with the sun peeping out today it felt like spring! Stavanger is a small and intimate town, so you get to really feel the holiday mood.

I went to Stavanger to interpret in court and instead of rushing to and from the airport, I decided I should book a hotel room and travel a day in advance. So I had time for dinner with a friend yesterday and lots of time to do whatever I pleased today. Except for the hour at the court house. It was the best idea I´ve had in months!;-) Not only did I get to relax a bit, but I also found time to do some work at a brochure translation. I ate lots and took many scenic pictures, unfortunately I didn´t think of bringing our camera with me, since this was like a “business” trip- haha!

I also did some shopping, shops still had sales miraculously enough! The bargains were peach leather trousers from Alexander Wang at 7% of their original price, as well as Tommy Hilfiger deux-pieces (jacket and skirt) at 50%. Yey, me!;-)

I should do this more often. You don´t need a whole weekend to visit another place, sometimes a day away is enough.

xxx, Alina


Boutique Hotel, Portugal

Now a 100-acre organic farm, Community Culture Retreat was a former ruin, restored by Pedro Ressano Garcia to reflect the Community Culture concept. The courtyard has two houses and it concentrates on sharing a culture of organic production, hospitality and gastronomy. The key achievement of the project was redefining already existing buildings and making do with what materials were available. 

Community Culture Retreat has 7 rooms and a library and hall for seminars, concerts and workshops. Relax by the pool, enjoy a secluded room or take part in a harvest. Don´t mind if I do!

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