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Travelling with your pet

Want to take Rover on vacation?  He's welcome at some hotels.  See below for where!!

Getaways: Top 10 Pet-Friendly Hotels

Posted By susanne On March 17, 2011 @ 3:54 pm In Today's Home Spun Wisdom I

 

Paws Up

Though only 1% of respondents with pets cite air travel as the most pet-friendly form of mass transportation, 15% brought their furry friends onto a plane last year. Opinion is divided on whether or not small pets should be allowed to sit in the airplane cabin, with 57% of pet owners welcoming four-legged friends and 59% of non-pet owners frowning upon sharing cabin space with animals.

Pet Peeves

Thirty-nine percent of respondents rank allergy issues as the biggest annoyance caused by travelers who bring their pets on mass transportation, while 26% are frustrated by noisy pets. Travelers note that their top peeves with pet owners are not picking up after their four-legged friends (56%), bringing their furry companions into inappropriate settings (35%) and expecting others to treat their pets like people (28%).

Top 10 Pet-Friendly Hotels

Forty-four percent of survey respondents who travel with their pets cite designated green space for walking pets as the most important characteristic of a pet-friendly hotel, while 16% look for on-site kennels or pet daycare.

1.   Hermitage Hotel, Nashville, Tennessee

This TripAdvisor Travelers' Choice award-winner offers a Pampering Pet program, featuring treats upon check-in, cozy beds and a menu of delicacies to satisfy animals' appetites. A dog-walking service is available on site ($15 per walk), while massage and grooming services can also be arranged. A $50 pet-surcharge will be added per night.

2.   Hotel Monaco Portland, Portland, Oregon

The pet amenity program at this boutique downtown hotel is overseen by Timmy, the four-legged "Director of Pet Relations." Complimentary amenities and services include bowls and beds for the duration of pets' stays, while travelers can also select the "Portland Unleashed" package, featuring a doggie makeover, a map of pet friendly breweries and more.

3. Affinia Dumont, New York City, New York

It's no coincidence that the bar and restaurant of this Midtown East property is called the Barking Dog—four-legged friends are welcomed with open arms at this hotel, whose amenities include plush dog beds and a travel water bowl for guests to take home. Additional services include pet taxis and even a pet psychic. A $25 pet-surcharge is added per stay.

3.         Argonaut Hotel, San Francisco, California  

All creatures great and small are welcome as guests at the Argonaut Hotel, which does not restrict the type or size of pet that can stay. Travelers visiting in the fall can participate in the hotel's annual "Pet Howl'oween" event, in which dogs showcase their creative costumes. The hotel supplies pet necessities from beds to bottled water, and all pets stay free.

5.Nine Zero Hotel, Boston, Massachusetts                                                                  Located across from the Boston Common's 50 acres of public park-land, this downtown hotel's setting is every bit as pet-friendly as its amenities. A complimentary "In the Doghouse" pet package includes a designer pet welcome treat, in addition to an in-room pet bed and bowl, ensuring that travelers' four-legged friends can put their paws up in style.

6.The Broadmoor, Colorado Springs, Colorado                                                            This property's "Pitty Pat Pet Club" program provides bedding, bowls and a 24-hour in-room dining menu, featuring gourmet treats for cats and dogs. While pet-walking is allowed in designated areas of the grounds, maps of local pet parks and scenic spots are also provided, ensuring that four-legged friends have the option of exercising in spectacular surroundings. A $35 pet-surcharge is added per stay.

7.Hyatt Regency Scottsdale Resort and Spa at Gainey Ranch, Scottsdale, Arizona This resort's "4Paws" pet-friendly program offers numerous amenities for dogs and cats, including beds and a "Beastro" menu, featuring delicacies such as Canine Veggie Bruschetta and feline Seafood Parfait, A $50 pet-surcharge is added per night and pets must weigh a maximum of 40 pounds (larger pets may be allowed at the resort's discretion).

8.Hotel Solamar, San Diego, California                                                                            In addition to providing complimentary treats for pets upon check-in, as well as cozy dog beds and food and water bowls in guest rooms, Hotel Solamar's VIP (Very Important Pet) Program can arrange additional services—from pet bonding sessions, to pet massage—ensuring both pets and their owners unwind during their stay.

9.Sheraton Seattle Hotel, Seattle, Washington                                                         This hotel supplies a Pet Welcome Pack, crammed with information and supplies, to any traveler checking-in with their furry companion (up to a weight of 80 pounds). Hounds can enjoy sweet dreams free of charge in an inviting Sheraton Sweet Sleeper Dog Bed, while signage noting 'Dog in Room' will ensure they do not receive any unexpected visitors.

10.     Loews Coronado Bay Resort, Coronado, California                                                     All pets receive edible treats, a pet tag and bowl upon check-in—but the pet-friendly fun also extends to the sand and surf. Travelers booking the "Su'ruff Camp" package receive accommodations, a doggie surf lesson, board shorts and a bandana for their furry friend, and a Surf and Turf room service pet meal. A $25 pet-surcharge is added per stay.

For more information, visit www.tripadvisor.com 123.

 

Can you buy, Can you finance?

Can you afford to buy a new home now, and if so, can you get financing?  Take a look at the following article from the National Association of Home Builders, posted on February 21, 2011

 Housing Affordability at Record Levels, Though Tight Financing Constrains Sales

Nationwide housing affordability measured by the NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Opportunity Index (HOl) during the fourth quarter of 2010 rose to its highest level ever in the 20-year history of the index.

The HOI indicated that 73.9% of all new and existing homes sold in the fourth quarter of 2010 were affordable to families earning the national median income of $64,400. This surpassed the previous high of 72.5% set during the first quarter of 2009 and marked the eighth consecutive quarter that the index has been above 70%. Until 2009, the HOl rarely topped 65% and never reached 70%.

"The report shows that housing affordability at the end of 2010 was at its highest level since we started computing the HOI," said NAHB Chairman Bob Nielsen. "However, while this is good news for consumers, both home buyers and builders continue to confront extremely tight credit conditions, and this remains a significant obstacle to many potential home sales."

Indianapolis-Carmel, Ind., was the most affordable major housing market in the country for the second consecutive quarter, after relinquishing for a quarter the top spot it had held for five years. In Indianapolis, 93.5% of all homes sold were affordable to households earning the area's median family income of $68,700.

Also ranking at the top of the most affordable major metro housing markets were: Youngstown-Warren-Boardman, Ohio-Pa.; Syracuse, N.Y; Warren-Troy-Farmington Hills, Mich.; and Detroit-Livonia-Dearborn, Mich.

Among smaller housing markets, the most affordable was Elkhart-Goshen, Ind., where 97.0% of homes sold during the fourth quarter of 2010 were affordable to families earning a median income of $58,600. Other smaller housing markets at the top of the index included: Lansing-East Lansing, Mich.; Kokomo, Ind.; Mansfield, Ohio; and Bay City, Mich.

During last year's fourth quarter, New York-White Plains-Wayne, N.Y.-N.J., again led the nation as the least affordable major housing market. In New York, not much more than a fourth — 25.5% — of all homes sold during the quarter were affordable to those earning the area's median income of $65,600. This was the 11th consecutive quarter that the New York metro area has held this dubious distinction.

The other major metro areas at the bottom of the affordability index included: San Francisco-San Mateo-Redwood City, Calif.; Honolulu; Los Angeles-Long Beach-Glendale, Calif.; and Santa Ana-Anaheim-Irvine, Calif.

Santa Cruz-Watsonville, Calif. was the least affordable of the smaller metro housing markets in the country during the fourth quarter. In Santa Cruz, 45.0% of the homes were affordable to families earning the median income of $84,200. Other small metro areas ranking at the bottom included: Ocean City, N.J.; San Luis Obispo-Paso Robles, Calif.; Laredo, Texas; and Santa Barbara-Santa Maria-Goleta, Calif.

For in-depth analysis of the latest housing statistics and research from the federal government, NAHB and other sources, Eye on the Economy readers are encouraged to visit Eye on Housing at http://eyeonhousing.wordpress.com/follow-us/.

 




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