Hairdryers and Toiletries

Lisbon and Spain • March 2016 / 2

I’ve decided to organize this trip by topic, as I’m bored with the chronology approach, and also because I realized that often, when I scan others’ blogs for info about locations, I want the dish on the details.  So, since I’m a woman, and I’m writing this blog, the first post is around the creature comforts that make me happy: a good hairdryer and good toiletries.  Why?

LisSpainAirTravel_1Because we travel very light.  This is it: a smaller-sized Rick Steves travel bag and a handmade type-writer-fabric carry-on for: the computer, last week’s newspapers I always plan to read, the iPad, chargers, empty water bottle, gorp, pashmina, pillow-that-blows-up-and-goes-around-my-head-for-sleeping, and for this trip, my pouch of embroidery.  So, no room or weight for a hairdryer and only the skimpiest of toiletry supplies.  I know I’m not going to outer Mongolia, so I can expect some comforts when I arrive.

Olissippo hotel_3 First stop was Lisbon, and the Hotel Olissippo Saldanha Hotel was great, with a great hairdryer and high-quality toiletries, as well as marble, marble, marble everywhere.  The hairdryer was on a shelf, not attached to the wall, so I had a longer cord to dry my medium-length hair.  I’ll be writing general info on the hotels in another post (have to rate those beds!) so look for more details later.  I also post on Trip Advisor quite regularly, with more photos and details there. Olissippo hotel_6Olissippo hotel_4Body wash and shampoo were combined into one, but we also had bar soap, shower cap, comb and nice bathrobes which remained mummified in the corner the whole time we were there.  It was really nice that they didn’t have the whole counter taken up with coffee maker, and gee-gaws holding all the toiletries like the American hotels (what is up with that?).

LIsSpainSevilla_4New town and new hotel: Hotel Amadeus in Sevilla and the bathroom hairdryer is one of those things on the wall, with a curly cord which works okay.  Not great, just okay.LIsSpainSevilla_10 LIsSpainSevilla_11This is it for the toiletries: packets of gel, weensy bars of soap, that when I open fall to pieces in my hand.  The tiny shelf is loaded with their stuff and apparently I can purchase the shell soap dish, according to the price list on top of the a/c  unit in the bedroom.  There’s lots of stuff for sale here: shell dish, accent pillows, pictures.

LisSpainCordoba_4The hotel in the next town, Cordoba, was a pretty snazzy place, as apparently the Queen and King of Spain had stayed at the Las Casas de la JuderiaLisSpainCordoba_4aThey had a nice hairdryer, mounted on the wall, and it beat all the hairdryers in terms of output: heat and blower strength.  Just thought you want to know how I grade these things.  They also had the arrangement that it only works if you are holding the button down, something I’d seen on our last trip, which flummoxed me at that time.  I’m used to the button being a “cool-down” button, but no. . . it has to be held down to get the hair dryer to work.

LisSpainCordoba_5aThis is to show you the floating shower floor, a unique feature.  No drain at all, but just a slab of marble with about a 1/2″ clearance all around, so the water flowed over the edge and out of sight.LisSpainCordoba_15Comb, shower cap, body wash, lotion, bar of hard soap for washing hands at the sink.

LisSpainGranada_1Now we are at Granada’s Hotel Leo, and we are roughing it: no marble anywhere.
(I’m kidding, of course, about roughing it.)LisSpainGranada_2But what they lacked in fancy stuff, Hotel Leo made up for in Capitol-C Clever.  I wanted to swipe the shampoo, but I knew the packaging wouldn’t make it.  But that shower cap came home with me.LisSpainGranada_3Yeah. I can see the drain.

Moving on: We were so un-impressed with our hotel in Madrid that I can’t find ANY photos of it anywhere in my stuff.  Good thing because on the first day the hair dryer quit after 35 seconds–it overheated and the automatic shut-off switch kicked into gear–and so they had to bring me up one from the front desk: an old-style wall-mount hair dryer which I perched precariously on the edge of the sink while I used it.  The rest of our stuff had to be put in the well of the bidet, as there were no other places anywhere.  It was basically a hotel for students, but the location was great.  And the last place. . .

Hotel Praktik Bakery_2

. . . was Barcelona.  This is the bathroom in Hotel Praktik Bakery, a walk-through affair with the shower and toilet in separate stalls to the right, hairdryer on the wall to the left of the sink, and it was a pretty good hairdryer.Hotel Praktik Bakery_7This place is compact, but comfortable, and it was a place that gave us plenty of room for our toiletry bags and what-nots in the bathroom.Hotel Praktik Bakery_8Best lotion of the trip–I brought home all the bottles they’d give me, cramming them into my one-quart toiletries bag.  When I use this, I think of our perfect trip to Lisbon and Spain and it makes me smile.

Itinerary for Portugal and Spain 2016

Lisbon and Spain • March 2016 / 1

Mar. 11, 2016 • Friday
Leave Los Angeles at 3:10 p.m. on Lufthansa

March 12, 2016 • Saturday
Arrive Frankfurt, Germany at 11:05 a.m. the next morning
Change Planes. Connect time in Frankfurt, DE (FRA) is 2 hours 15 minutes.
Lv. Frankfurt at 1:20 p.m. on TAP Portugal
Arrive in Lisbon, Portugal at 3:25 p.m
Total Travel Time: 16 hr 15 mins.

LisSpainAirTravel_13March 13-16 • Sat, Sun, Mon, Tue, Wed (a.m) • Lisbon, Portugal
Hotel Olissippo Saldanha
Av. Praia da Vitória 30, Lisboa, Portugal

March 16, Wednesday • Travel to Seville
Leave Lisbon at 8:10 a.m. on TAP Portugal
Arrive Seville, Spain at 10:20 a.m.
Flight time: 1 hr. 10 mn.

SevillaMarch 16- 18 Wed p.m., Thurs, Fri am • Seville
Hotel Amadeus
Calle Farnesio 6 y calle San Jose, 10
Barrio de Santa Cruz, 41004 Seville, Spain

March 18 Fri p.m. Travel to Cordoba
Leave Sevilla (Santa Justica Train Station) at 12:50 p.m.
Arrive Cordoba train station 1:35 p.m.

CordobaMarch 18 Fri • Cordoba
Las Casas de la Juderia
C/Tomás Conde, 10, Cordoba, 14004 Spain

March 19 Sat a.m. Travel to Granada
Leave Cordoba at 11:27 a.m.
Arrive at Antequera-Santa Ana Train Station at 11:55 a.m. (in the middle of nowhere)
Leave Antequera-Santa Ana Train Station at 12:15
Arrive Granada 1:30 p.m.
Overall travel is 2 h. 3 min. (1 hour of it is bus)

GranadaGranada Saturday March 19 afternoon-Sunday afternoon March 20
Hotel: Room Mate Leo
C/ Mesones, 15 18001 – Granada, Spain

March 20, Sunday—Visit to Alhambra Nasrid Reservation @ 9:30 a.m.

MadridMarch 20, Sunday Travel to Madrid
Leave Granada “train” station at 2:45 p.m
Arrive Antequera-Santa Ana Train Station at 4:00 p.m.
Change from bus to train in Antequera-Santa Ana Train Station
Leave Antq S.Ana 4:23
Arrive in Madrid 6:40 at Madrid Puerta de Atocha [Madrid P.A.]
Metro to El Sol station near our hotel

March 20-22 Sunday-Monday • Madrid
Hotel Victoria 4
Calle de la Victoria 4
Puerta del Sol, 28012 Madrid, Spain

BarcelonaMarch 22, Tuesday • Travel to Barcelona
Leave Madrid (Madrid P.A.) at 5:30 p.m.
Arrive in Barcelona (Sants) 8:40 p.m.
Take Metro to hotel

March 22-25, Tuesday to Saturday am • Barcelona,
Hotel Praktik Bakery
Provenca, 279, 08037 Barcelona, Spain

March 26, 2015, Saturday
Leave Barcelona, Spain at 6:00 a.m. on Lufthansa
Arrive Frankfurt, Germany at 8:20 a.m.
Change Planes. Connect time in Frankfurt, Germany (FRA) is 1 hr. 50 min
Lv. Frankfurt at 10:10 am on Lufthansa
Arrive Los Angeles, CA at 1:50 p.m. and try to remember where car is
Total Travel Time is 15 hr. 50 mins.