Archive for the ‘guided tours’ Category

New Walking Tour Explores Vienna’s Schönbrunn Palace

July 24, 2014

Context, organizer of critically acclaimed walking tours, expands its program in Vienna with Gilded Ambition: a Tour of Schönbrunn Palace, a walk within the spectacular interiors of the Habsburgs’ summer residence and a close consideration of the interwoven history of the Habsburg Monarchy.

Built at the end of the 17th century by Emperor Leopold I, Schönbrunn Palace is situated within an expanse of glorious gardens, and home to almost 1500 exquisitely preserved rooms, many of which are open to the public. The palace provides a unique platform for understanding a complex history, and exploring the lives and loves of a long line of Habsburg monarchs. Each room is adorned with ancient artwork and fine furnishings that reveal an intricate and compelling storyline about those who lived there.

Gilded Ambition guides visitors through the lives of successive Habsburg monarchs, uncovering narratives and provoking discussion and consideration of this hugely influential family. Led by a local expert, the 2.5-hour walking seminar goes beyond standard show-and-tell tours, to instill a deeper understanding of the complex narratives and geopolitical influences revealed by the palace and its interior.

The tour also connects the past with the present, revealing how the Habsburgs’ legacy, as manifest in Schönbrunn Palace, continues to speak to modern day Vienna, its culture, its people and their outlook.

“Schönbrunn Palace is Austria’s most popular tourist attraction, yet we wanted to create a unique way to experience it.” says Natalie Holmes, Context’s Central Europe manager and co-creator of the tour. “The tour joins the dots between this magnificent monument, its complex historical significance, and its modern-day legacy.”

Gilded Ambition: a Tour of Schönbrunn Palace lasts 2 1/2 hours and is available daily. Group walks cost €65 per person, plus €14.50 (adult), €8.50 (child 6-18) for palace entry. Private tours cost €280 per party. As with all Context walking seminars, groups are led by a credentialed expert and limited to six (6) people maximum.

Founded by National Geographic writer Paul Bennett and designer Lani Bevacqua, Context Travel, which is based in Philadelphia, is a network of English-speaking scholars and professionals, including art historians, writers, architects and gastronomes, who organize and lead walking seminars in twenty-four (24) world cities, including: Florence, Rome, Venice, Naples, Paris, London, Edinburgh, Madrid, Barcelona, Berlin, New York, Philadelphia, Boston, Washington, D.C., Istanbul, Athens, Beijing, Shanghai, Vienna, Prague, Budapest, Amsterdam, Tokyo, and Kyoto. A certified B Corporation, Context Travel was named one of the fastest growing American companies in 2011 by Inc Magazine. Travel + Leisure has called Context one of the top European tour companies for its innovative approach to travel and the depth of its programs. To learn more about Context, visit the website at:

See also:

On the Danube Bike Trail: Seeing Vienna by Bike and slideshow

Jewish Heritage Preserved in Vienna, Austria and slideshow


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New Pick-Up Site for Spaceport America Tours in Truth or Consequences, New Mexico

July 31, 2013

The hot springs capital of the Southwest – Truth or Consequences (T or C), New Mexico – will be the site of a new pick up and drop off point for the popular Spaceport America Preview Tours offered by Follow the Sun Inc./FTS Tours. Beginning Friday, Aug. 2, 2013, the pick up/drop off location will be at the Holiday Inn Express Hotel and Suites in T or C.

FTS Tours has been offering 3 1/2 hour Spaceport America Preview Tours since May 2011 on Fridays and Saturdays at 9 a.m. and 1 p.m., and on Sundays at 9 a.m only.  Tours typically sell out.

“We are excited not only to bring people here for the Spaceport tours, but to give them a chance to experience the historic landmarks, art galleries, and hot springs in T or C,” said Adrian Sandoval, Holiday Inn Express General Manager. “The Holiday Inn Express is the first thing you see at the top of the hill when coming into town, so we’re easy to find and are very accommodating not only to our guests but to guests of the Spaceport America tours.”

“We are elated at our new partnership with the Holiday Inn Express,” said Rose Bleth, President of FTS Tours. “They truly understand customer service, so our guests will be unquestionably well taken care of. It is not just a pick up location – it will be part of our Spaceport tour experience. We certainly appreciate the hospitality that Adrian has shown to FTS Tours and will show our future guests.”  

Beginning on Aug. 2, Holiday Inn Express will offer complimentary hot breakfasts until 10 a.m. to anyone taking the morning tour; and hot tea, coffee and cookies for those taking the afternoon tour. Tour guests interested in staying overnight at the hotel will receive a 10 percent discount with purchase of a Spaceport America Preview Tour ticket.

Tour guests can wait for shuttles in the lobby of Holiday Inn Express, which accommodates up to 60 people. Guests can park at the hotel’s parking lot which accommodates up to 75 vehicles.  

Holiday Inn Express Hotel and Suites is located at 2201 F.G. Armin St. in T or C, NM. Call 575-894-3900 for reservation details.

FTS Tours’ Spaceport America Preview Tours feature guided, exclusive access to the spaceport site and provide guests with an up close and personal encounter only available during the pre-operational phase. Guests will learn about the area’s colorful history including that of T or C, Elephant Butte Dam, the ghost town of Engle, Jornada del Muerto (Journey of the Deadman), media mogul Ted Turner’s 350,000-acre Armendaris ranch, and the historic El Camino Real (Royal Road) leading to Spaceport America.  

The tour ventures inside the Spaceport perimeter to see the horizontal launch area, spaceway (runway), operations center, and areas still under development, including the fuel storage complex and the iconic Virgin Galactic Gateway building. Guests will hear stories of Virgin Galactic, Space X, Armadillo Aerospace and others, and learn about trends in the emerging commercial space industry, among many fascinating bits of information.

FTS tour prices are $59 for adults 18 and over; $49 for teens ages 13-17; and $29 for children 12 and under. Reservations and a minimum of three guests are required per tour. For reservations, call 575-740-6894 or book online at

The New Mexico State Board of Finance recently authorized a $20.8 million loan to fund construction of two new visitor centers at Spaceport America which is expected to draw more than 200,000 visitors annually.

Visit or for more information.

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Take Me Out Organizes Nightlife Tours of New York City

May 21, 2013
Take Me Out, a NYC nightlife tour company takes guests to the hottest spots around the city, handling everything from limousine transportation to reservations at each stop © 2013 Karen Rubin/

Take Me Out, a NYC nightlife tour company takes guests to the hottest spots around the city, handling everything from limousine transportation to reservations at each stop © 2013 Karen Rubin/

Take Me Out, a NYC nightlife tour company takes guests to the hottest spots around the city, handling everything from limousine transportation to reservations at each stop.

While it may be a nightlife tour, Take Me Out is aimed at everyone, not just tourists. The company prides itself on providing an alternative way to explore the city’s nightlife that won’t have you waiting in line outside for hours.

“Take Me Out is a great way for everyone to experience New York City and we are actually one of the only night life tours in the city, said Mor “What makes us stand out is that we take our guests to exclusive places. These are places you can’t get in without a reservation. It definitely has a VIP feel.”

One of the Take Me Out’s tours includes the popular Mixology tour. This particular tour includes two charted limos, guides who whip up great drinks for tour-goers along the way, and stops at some of the city’s trendiest bars.

If you’re the type who is looking for something a little different, try the company’s most popular tour, the Prohibition Tour. This tour transports you back to the 1920’s and takes you to secret bars and hidden speakeasies throughout the city. Along the way, sip champagne, enjoy the limo ride, and learn about the era as you visit each stop.

Other tours include their nightclub tour for those who love to dance, and a singles social tour.

“The goal with launching this company is that I wanted to create something that guests could enjoy and that stood out from the typical nightlife experience in the city,” continued Mor. “Everyone enjoys the tours, both locals and tourists. They are also perfect for events like birthday parties, and with wedding season right around the corner, it’s the perfect idea for a bachelor or bachelorette party!”

Take Me Out Tours currently offers five tours, but also offers custom events. Attendees can expect on average three stops per tour and each starts from $100-$150 per person. Tours run most nights of the week, starting as early as 5pm, with most starting around 9pm.

For more information on Take Me Out, visit

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