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Kickstarter Campaign Launching for Revolutionary Smart Luggage Scale

It’s time to smarten-up while travelling with Weigh-to-Fly, a revolutionary extendable luggage scale which sends real-time updates to your phone as you pack your case. It is the ideal travel companion to help you avoid excess baggage charges when you fly.

The device has an adjustable, lightweight, telescopic frame that slides and locks to fit whichever size case you want to take. Once the case is placed on top, the sensors in each of the corners send updates via Bluetooth to the traveller’s smartphone, allowing them to see instantly how close they are to their weight limit as they pack. The smartphone app contains details of every major airline’s weight restrictions so the user simply types in which airline they are flying with. It even takes account of the weight of the device (450g) and the scale’s unique “coat hanger” design means it can also serve as a clothes hanger when you get to your destination. Also incorporated is a proximity sensor, which sends a notification to your phone if you leave your case behind or move too far away from your luggage.

Weigh-to-Fly is the brainchild of Software Electronics Engineer Jamie Cruickshank: “One in five passengers are charged an average of £25 for excess baggage at the airport. In the UK alone, passengers forked out over £1.6 billion in charges in a single year. Multiply this globally and it is a huge problem. Not only is it costing passengers dearly but it causes stress, hassle and inconvenience at the airport.”

He added: “There are other products on the market but these have disadvantages. For example there are cases with the weighing mechanism built in. These limit you to using a single case whereas Weigh-to-Fly can be used with any piece of luggage. Other luggage scales can let you down. They give inaccurate results, break easily or require you to lift heavy bags in order to read the weight. Not to mention the repetitive process of zipping up and weighing your bag every time you add or remove something.”

To fund the development the team is launching a Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign which aims to raise £50,000. Some of the rewards include early bird deals and a chance to visit the design team to collect your product in person. For details of the campaign please visit

The retail price of Weigh-to-Fly is expected to be £69.99….a small price to pay to know you are not going to incur excess charges ever again! For further information please visit our website

Weigh-to-Fly – Vital Statistics
Weight 450g
Dimensions (folded) 410 x 390
Dimensions (unfolded) 410 x 550
Max Bag Weight 40kg
Rechargeable Li-On battery via microUSB: battery life approx. 5 hours


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Top 10 Destinations for a Happy Ending

(based on member exit polls) Rank - City - Country - Number of Couples Who Visited

Top Vacation Spots for New Couples
Taking a vacation with someone tends to brings out either the best or the worst in a person. This makes the first holiday a tipping point for new relationships. Despite finding out each other's quirks, some destinations prove to be the breeding ground for successful romances. According to a recent study, Oranjestad, Aruba sparks the most long-term relationships.

New York - August 19, 2015

Travel is a major test for a relationship, and a sure way to determine compatibility between two people.

The world’s first travel dating website pulled exit poll data from members who claimed to have met their significant other on MissTravel, revealing the destinations that resulted in the most successful relationships.

According to results of the study, more people who visited Oranjestad, Aruba for their destination first date ended up in relationships. With gorgeous beaches and a relaxing ambiance, it’s easy to see how sparks could fly while getting to know someone over a romantic weekend in Oranjestad. Surprisingly, Las Vegas, notoriously known as Sin City, was the second most visited destination by couples who stayed committed long term.

The following list shows the top ten destinations that resulted in the most couples entering into long-term relationships.

Top 10 Destinations for a Happy Ending (based on member exit polls)
Rank - City - Country - Number of Couples Who Visited

1 - Oranjestad, Aruba - 1840
2 - Las Vegas, USA - 1437
3 - Bali, Indonesia - 1231
4 - Miami, USA - 1055
5 - Paris, France - 1045
6 - San Francisco, USA - 982
7 - Paradise Islands, Bahamas - 915
8 - Rome, Italy - 846
9 - Toronto, Canada - 815
10 - Cancun, Mexico - 793

“There’s certain personality traits you can’t learn about a person just by going to dinner and a movie,” said Brandon Wade, founder and CEO of “Travel brings people out of their comfort zones allowing a genuine connection to form which can reveal compatibility sooner than usual.”

The MissTravel app is now available for download on the Apple App Store and Google Play Store. For more information, please contact Hannah Dela Cruz at or call +1 702 241 0100.

About is the world’s first and only travel dating website. Instead of the conventional date, such as the movies or dinner, singles travel to new and exotic destinations together in hopes of finding romance. was founded by MIT alum and online dating expert, Brandon Wade, and joins an impressive brand family of successful niche dating websites. Launched in 2012, the site boasts over 500,000 members worldwide, inspiring over 300,000 trips domestically and internationally.


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New Travel Game Helps People Get to Know Each Other Better...and Quickly!

Personalogy Dating Game

Two entrepreneurially-minded women have created a fun and addictive card game that dramatically increases the speed at how well people get to know each other.

Beginning in 2000, Michelle Burke, a corporate trainer, was speaking to 300 Microsoft employees from all over the world and needed a breakthrough way to get them fully engaged and involved. She discovered what worked best was asking critical work life questions that challenged people to come up with solutions that allowed others to chime in and contribute to a conversation. This would ultimately reveal many different ways to handle the situation.

For example: "If your boss is continually taking credit for your work, what would you do and why?"

Michelle then met with Lilamani de Silva, a biochemist and a former UK assistant television producer. On two different continents they saw the same phenomenon. In restaurants, bars, and other gathering places, people had their eyes and their attention buried in their phones, iPads, and other electronic devices. They were not engaging with those around them.

So the idea evolved and they created and published their first game called Personalogy: The Original Party Edition, around Thanksgiving 2013.

It was a hit.

The two traveled all over Europe and the United States beta testing the game by playing with people they met on trains and planes, in restaurants and bars, even in line waiting for some event to begin. It broke down barriers.

Personalogy allows people to really connect in a fun way. AND, they found the game to be a total "Man Magnet"! (The stories they can tell...)

"People want to feel connected. We want to feel like we matter to one another," says Burke.

Personalogy comes in two editions. One is for adults and is an absurdly provocative fun situation card game for thinking people. The other is the Family Fun Edition; it's the laugh-out-loud discovery game for the whole family.

Each game consists of over 100 topical and intriguing questions, each with multiple-choice answers.

Players are challenged to guess what answer their opponent will most likely select and why. Questions cover everything from lifestyle, pop culture, psychobabble, to sports and dating.

Playing often turns into a laugh-out-loud experience.

“The goal, says Michelle and Liliamani, “is to spark off fantastic conversations where people happily reveal more about themselves and learn more about other people, than anyone could ever imagine.”

Original Party Edition
Family Fun Edition
List $20

Personalogy Card Games are small enough to fit in your purse, backpack, glove box, or pocket. They can be played with points for competitive players, or as a fun and easy conversation starter. However you like to play, they will trigger exciting, fun and animated conversations that provide instant connection to family, friends, co-workers or even love interests you want to get to know better. Moms love them for car rides and long lines at amusement parks.

Available on Amazon. For more information visit

The Original Party Edition and the Family Fun Edition can be used to enliven Dinner or Cocktail parties, Date Night or Game night, Road Trip or Summer Vacation, Girls Night Out - "the secret Man-magnet", Icebreaker or networking event for meeting new people, Bachelorette parties or Family Get-togethers.

Personalogy is now evolving into series of specialty games that are used in a wide variety of circumstances as a social catalyst, relationship builder, culture connector and conversation starter.

The new Personalogy Dating Game and Sports editions are coming soon.

Personalogy Dating Game
The creators of Personalogy, Michelle Burke and Lilamani de Silva For more information visit Michelle Burke from Los Angeles and Lilamani de Silva from London both believe there are no accidents and, hence their meeting several years ago has turned into a wild adventure. Their insatiable curiosity for life, family, friends, food and travel has led them on a quest to see the silly side of life, to relish every moment and laugh out loud.


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Vagabonding Through Retirement: Unusual Travels Far from Our Paris Houseboat.

Bill and Ina Mahoney have led the life of the quintessential wanderers – they’ve not only traveled around the world, but actually lived around the globe from Laos and Bolivia to Ukraine and France. Armed with passion and a remarkable sense of adventure, Bill and Ina sought out to learn the world through the eyes of people of other cultures. So, who better then they to teach us how to create lifetime memories when traveling?

A French worker gets paid for thirty days off each year. The US is the only developed country without any legally required paid vacation days. Is it any wonder that many American opt for an organized tour in order to cram in as much sight-seeing as possible into a one or two week period?

If you are retired or have time, why not spend longer abroad for the same amount or even less money? While visiting those “not to be missed” sights mingle with the natives. Learn their customs. Visit their markets. Dine on their authentic cuisine. These experiences could go a long way toward giving you a better understanding of the numerous ways to do everyday things other than the American way.

These six steps should get you on the way for your own store of “unforgettable memories:”

(1.) Browse through the library and bookstores guidebooks. Look for those authored by non-US writers. (Both the Rough Guide and the Lonely Planet series were started by young Brits whose clientele weren’t seeking luxury. They have a vested interest in chocking their guides full bargains.)

(2.) If you prefer cruises, you’ll find numerous options in these guides. (Note the information given here isn’t verbatim, and the details included in parentheses have been inserted to assist the novice traveler with additional information as an aid to use while making their travel selections.)

a. To visit Luang Prabang, the beautiful old French city—recently named a World Heritage Center—hop aboard one of the salt barges that leave from Vientiane, the capital of Laos, to make the five-day trip down the swift flowing Mekong River, one of Asia’s major waterways. For around seventy-five US cents a night you’ll have memories that will last you a lifetime! (You will spend both your days and nights sitting and sleeping on the wooden platform near the engine room. After mooring each evening, you will have an opportunity to enjoy an invigorating bath or swim in the river. Food is available at the various ports of call. Perhaps you’ll be the lucky one invited to dine at the captain’s table on the last night of this cruise. Formal attire is not required.)

b. For the seventeen hours of this cruise you will have ample opportunity to mingle with the Chinese on one of their typical large one-room boats. You will then board a bus for a scenic drive through the Chinese countryside viewing rice paddies and will learn what life is like in rural China. The cost for the first boat and bus is what the French refer to as “three times nothing.” At Guilin, your destination, another cruise will take to view such highly touted karst formations as “The Yearning for Husband Hill” that are scattered along the Li River, another one of China’s outstanding attractions.

c. Any one of The East is Red ships is an inexpensive alternative to the numerous tourist boats on your not-to-be-missed visit to Three Gorges stretch of the Yangtze River, China’s longest waterway. (There are no first class and only two second-class staterooms, but sharing a small room with seven or eight Chinese affords a unique opportunity to learn their everyday habits.)

(3.) If you prefer land-based destinations then consider these suggestions:

a. Before you leave Chinese don't miss taking a stroll on The Great Wall and recalling the grandeur of the Ming Dynasty during a visit to their tombs. (If you don’t understand Chinese, your guidebook’s detailed instructions for getting to the kiosks where these less than a dollar tickets are sold, also lists all the salient points of these two sights. It’s also easy to eavesdrop on English speaking guides at the sight. )

b. The Trans Siberian Train leaves the Beijing station every Wednesday morning on it’s way to Moscow. It passes through Mongolia where one marvels at this vast pristine sandy landscape. You will rumble through seven time zones and cross four rivers, including the Volga, Europe’s longest river. The stone marker in the Ural Mountains delineating Asia from Europe is clearly visible from the train. (The price in the hundred-person dormitory is a much cheaper option than a flight if you choose it instead of a small second-class cabin that sleeps two for this five days trip.)

c. After checking out the tooth-pulling booth in Marrakesh’s square, stroll around the rest of this colorful Berber market. Notice the colorful array of spices used in their delicious cuisine. (Be on guard as you walk past the fortunetellers whispering secrets under their small umbrellas or you might find a harmless pet snake wrapped around your neck—an often-used ruse to demand money for its release.) The highlight of your trip is certain to be a camel ride into the Sahara to sleep in a Berber tent.

(4.)An even cheaper travel option is a visa length stay in a city or country of your choice. (Thailand and Bali are favorites, but any country has a great deal to offer.)

a. Search newspapers, as well as the guidebook, for bargain flights. (Some airlines provide free overnight accommodations and food for long distance flights—quite a saving if you’re going to Southeast Asia.)

b. Lodging will be your main cost so search for alternatives to hotels. Guesthouses are a great recommendation for Thailand. (They have all the necessary facilities and with their constant turnover of young backpackers eager to share their latest travel experiences their recommendations are golden.

c. Search for alternatives to taxis such as pickup trucks with benches in the back. Motorcycles are easily rented, but helmets are not normally required. (Driving on the left side of the road can present problems for Americans. It is often safer to be a passenger than a driver.)

(5.) Pack light, very light.

a. “Same shirt, different day” is a great byline to keep in mind for any type of independent travel as handling your own luggage saves tip money.

b. Clothes should be functional. Leave your expensive jewelry at home. It is an invitation a thief looks for.

(6.)Be flexible. (If your carefully planned trip falls through, don't fret—reschedule or forget it. Something else could be serendipity)

About the authors:
Bill Mahoney began hitchhiking across the country working odd jobs at thirteen. He sailed the Atlantic as a merchant marine and the Pacific in the navy. He also fought a professional fight. He hopped trolleys, trucks, automobiles, and trains. He graduated from an adult high school then earned his B.A. at UCLA and an M.A. at Boston University. He taught world history in Paris for ten years. His second book, Is Muldoon Still in Paris, recounts his delinquent childhood and a third book, Mission Paris will appear soon. Bill speaks five languages and can tell a story in a dozen others.

Ina Garrison Mahoney grew up in the small Texas town of Blooming Grove. She graduated from Southwestern University with a BA in speech and drama and an MA from the University of Houston. She went to France in 1958 with a one-year leave of absence from her teaching job in Victoria, Texas. When she returned to the U.S. to live five years ago, she had to begin learning how to live as an American once again.

Website: Vagabonding Through Retirement: Unusual Travels Far from Our Paris Houseboat can be purchased from Amazon, Barnes & Noble and through all major booksellers


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Cellhire is a world leader in mobile communications

Summer months are typically when people take vacations with thousands of people traveling internationally. A lot of thought and foresight goes into planning a vacation but do people stop to think about security and their cell phone for these rather expensive trips? How can we keep our cell phones from being hacked and our data safe? Typically the number one concern regarding a SmartPhone when traveling is the international roaming fee. However, travelers must be more concerned about their personal data being taken from unsecure connections by cyber criminals.

Below are three tips from Cellhire, a world leader in mobile communications:

1. Never use Public Wi-Fi – rent a MiFi device from Cellhire which offers a secure connection for all of your personal data

2. Traveling cell phones are the new traveler’s checks – leave your personal phone at home

3. Buy or rent an international SIM card from a U.S. provider

“Essentially we urge travelers to leave their personal SmartPhone at home. This doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice your contacts and personal info, it just means that you rent or purchase a “travel phone” and only use a secure network. Using public WIFI is a recipe for disaster,” said Greg Kraynak, CEO of Cellhire, USA. “When you access personal data, social media, bank accounts, photos, etc., on a public platform then you are basically offering your data to be intercepted by cyber criminals. If major celebrities with multi-million dollar bank accounts are hacked, it shows you how vulnerable we are.”

Cellhire is a world leader in mobile communications providing clients and partners with international and competitive wireless solutions for more than 20 years. Through the strength of global relationships and commitment to innovation, Cellhire makes it possible for clients to take advantage of the most advanced voice and data technology enabling them to stay connected whenever and wherever they travel. Cellhire offers a broad range of world-class services including international cell phones, BlackBerry devices, 3G data cards, and a host of satellite options. Strategic partnerships with global networks such as Telefonica, Vodafone, and T-Mobile allow Cellhire to provide their customers with the best solutions on the highest quality networks in over 180 countries worldwide.


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The beautiful, rolling hills of Tuscany once buried by the sea

 Tuscany in Italy

 Tuscany in Italy

The beautiful, rolling hills of Tuscany in Italy are as alive with history and culture as they are with flora and fauna. In the heart of the region, in the area between Florence, Pisa and Siena, is an 800-year-old estate dominated by an ancient castle: once home to the Medici family, this beautiful but neglected corner of Italy has been thoughtfully redeveloped and reborn as Toscana Resort Castelfalfi. In the 1960s, the 11,000-hectare estate was abandoned by all but five of its residents in a countrywide rural exodus. Then in 2007, TUI AG, one of world’s leading travel groups, came across the property and saw it potential. ‘From the very outset the idea was to restore the ancient village and bring it back to life,’ says Director Stefan Neuhaus. ‘We are preserving the site’s original structure and reinstating part of Italy’s heritage, but with all the additional modern services and standards that you would expect from such an upmarket resort. ’

Work on transforming the estate into a luxury resort began in 2011. The renovation of the borgo – the outskirts of the castle walls – commenced with the restoration of the residential complex comprising 41 apartments completed in the summer 2013, and with the development of the first of three planned hotels. Built within the walls of the old tobacco factory, the 31-room La Tabaccaia retains many of its host structure’s original features and there’s also a typical Trattoria-Pizzeria in a renovated building close by and a restaurant that opened its doors in June 2014, located in the Castle, with a panoramic terrace and amazing 360 degrees views over the countryside. The Castle will be the perfect location for those looking for a magic setting for weddings, private gatherings or business meetings.

Scattered throughout the estate are 26 original farmhouses, or casali, four of which have been dismantled and lovingly rebuilt using the same stones. The buildings’ wooden beams have also been preserved and each farmhouse has a traditional terracotta tile roof, while bathrooms have been brought up to date using local marble or ceramic tiles. With the capacity to adapt each interior according to its owner’s specifications, these casali present an exciting prospect for would be buyers, whether seeking a stunning second home or a superior rental investment. Several of the properties also line the resort’s 27-hole golf course, which is already considered one of the best courses in Italy. Some of the farmhouse are also available for weekly rentals.

Strewn with vineyards and olive and cypress trees, the estate is also a hunting reserve, playing home to wild boars, deer and foxes. It is also already self-sufficient in terms of water and there are plans to create a biomass plant, which will enable Toscana Resort Castelfalfi to produce its own biofuel. ‘We searched for this place for a long time,’ says Stefan Neuhaus. ‘What we are developing is not a typical resort, it’s a new approach for the international luxury travel market that offers apartments, a range of farmhouses, a luxury club concept and four and five stars hotels. Our guests are well travelled and looking for an authentic experience. With us, that is exactly what they will find.’

Toscana Resort Castelfalfi is an 800-year old medieval hamlet in Tuscany lovingly being restored and developed to welcome visitors by its present owner, TUI AG, the world’s biggest tourism company. The Toscana Resort Castelfalfi project started in 2007 following a decades’ long migration of its inhabitants in the ‘60s, when locals moved to bigger cities for work. Only five inhabitants were living on the estate when TUI AG purchased the property. Castelfalfi covers more than 2,700 acres of vineyards, olive groves, woods, and lakes.


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Luxury Travel: Soar Through the Skies to the World’s Finest Destinations with Privé Jets

Privé Jets sets the standard for private jet service with their On-Demand Jet Charter services. Their dedicated team of highly trained, multilingual travel consultants and affiliates around the world are available 24/7 to ensure a personalized, enhanced experience for their clients. With access to over 6,000 private jets worldwide, Privé Jets are the leading provider of global private aviation and jet charter travel for both leisure and corporate itineraries.

With the addition of their Jet Setter program, customers can enjoy the added benefits of discounted hourly rates, a personal travel consultant, 24/7 concierge services, and no additional fees. The best part about the Jet Setter Program is that customers are not locked into any operational zone. There is no other private jet charter program that can fulfill all your needs and wants quite like Privé Jets.

As an award-winning private jet charter company, and proud INC 5000 company, Privé Jets strives to provide the highest level of personal service while offering meaningful experiences for all of their private jet charter customers worldwide. Don’t make the mistake of settling for sub-par service to book your next vacation. Fly superior with Privé Jets. Visit to learn more about the company.


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Infographic: Summer Vacation 2014 | Statista
You will find more statistics at Statista


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    Secrets of Paradise reveals the pathway to sustainable living and growth
    by Bo Rinaldi and Patricio Tamariz

    When Bo Rinaldi, stepped off the airplane in Ecuador and he knew that he had landed in paradise. As he met with Patricio Tamariz and his family in 2011 he realized he was being shown the secrets of the past and the keys to our future and that we needed to share these with everyone. Together they decided to collaborate on a book with the express purpose of creating a living roadmap to help achieve harmony with nature and all the people of the world. They titled it the Secret of Paradise, Mysteries of the Pacific Coast of Ecuador.

    Secrets of Paradise

    Patricio Tamariz and his family own Casa Grande, a beautiful retreat right on the tip of Bahía and one of the original sites for the discovery of the Americas. They also own the spectacular and historically breathtaking Eco-resort known as Chirije, an amazing archaeological site, which holds many ancient secrets. Tamariz held the official post of First Executive Director of Tourism Promotion for Ecuador and now consults and helps develop the coastal properties of the area, using sustainable agriculture and aquaculture, tourism, community and businesses of all kinds.

    In 1998 the El Niño was at its peak and Bahía was hit by a 7.1 Richter scale earthquake. He and his family, with the help of hundreds of friends and dozens of key agencies, set out to rebuild their area. They rose above that devastation together, and created a movement that resulted in the creation of one of the world’s first and most incredible Bioregional cities, Bahía de Caráquez, Ecuador.

    Secrets of Paradise

    It is one of the most beautiful places on the planet where the water and the air is 75-85 degrees, beautiful sea breezes and it is the key center of interest for the rewarding insights and contained within the pages of Secrets of Paradise.

    Did the ancient Ecuadorians populate the Pacific?
    Did the early Ecuadorians sail across the Pacific Ocean on ships made of balsa and reach Australia? One of the incredible chapters in Secrets of Paradise contains the first English translations of the accounts of these ancient mariners.

    Kon-Tiki, the new Oscar nominated film accurately dramatizes the 1947 attempt by Thor Heyerdahl to recreate the journey to show that it was possible that the ancient seafarers could travel from Ecuador to Polynesia. Heyerdahl and his five companions sailed their balsa raft for 101 days over 6900 km (4,300 miles) across the Pacific Ocean. The journey ended when they smashed on a reef at Raroia in the Tuamotu Islands on August 7, 1947. The crew successful made it to land and all returned safely.

    23 years later, in 1970, Vital Alsar another European explorer achieved more than what Heyerdahl had done, and in 161 days sailed on similarly constructed balsawood vessel from Guayaquil, Ecuador and in 161 days reached Australia, proving that the ancient maritime cultures of Ecuador had the capacity of traveling long distances in the Pacific.

    Both Thor and Vital based their vessel designs on the Balsawood vessel used that was detailed by the first Spanish conquistadors, who had their first documented encounter with this ship off the Ecuadorian coast in 1526.

    Balsa for his sailing vessel was acquired from a forest in Quevedo, Ecuador and floated them down the Guayas River to Guayaquil. Here they constructed the raft in the port of Callao, Peru using the ancient designs and evidence they had found.

    Secrets of Paradise

    Secrets of Paradise also describes additional evidence of findings provided by modern archaeologists that the cultures of the territories of thousands of years ago, built their balsa ships, and were sailing and trading the sacred Spondylus (Red spiny oyster) shell to the peoples of pre-Columbian Mexico, Peru and as far south to Chile.

    “Who discovered paradise?”
    Another question discussed in detail “Who settled the Pacific Coast of Ecuador”? Did Christopher Columbus discover America in 1492? The authors believe not. They explain why the first humans crossing the Bering Strait Iceland Bridge must have. There are also accounts of Asians crossing the Pacific and landing in Ecuador. In addition, there is the theory of the Chinese circumnavigating the world as early as the 15th century.

    “Where does chocolate come from?”
    Few people realize that one of the most important discoveries Columbus made was on his fourth trip to the New World, where he learned of the cacoa beans (cocoa) from the fruit that live in the cacao pods of the tree with the same name. The famous Swedish Scientist Linnaeus, the father of modern Taxonomy, named this species Theobroma cacao, which means in Greek “Food of the Gods”. Cacao was cultivated by the pre-Columbian cultures of the tropical South and Central America thousands of years ago (the Mayans 1500 yrs. ago). The original native strain of Cacao, scientists declare, comes from the upper Amazon of Ecuador and Colombia. This area is considered the center of origin of Cacao. Early man involved in tropical agriculture spread it and introduced it into Central America.

    Secrets of Paradise

    The Secret of Paradise proposes the idea chocolate may turn out to be the basis for world’s sustainable future. The authors explore the wonders of modern Ecuador with specific emphasis on its thriving and sustainable organic economy. The organic Cacao plantations comprises the sources used in the manufacturing of Paul Newman’s Organic Chocolate and a considerable portion of the coffee consumed all over the world. Here is a noteworthy excerpt from the historic documentation:

    “… Accounts say that the emperor Montezuma stated: "The divine drink builds up resistance and fights fatigue. A cup of this precious drink [cocoa] permits a man to walk for a whole day without food."

    With a reverent and detailed touch, they build on and then utilize the comprehensive history and anthropological background to look at the present and then towards the future.

    What is the Secret of Paradise?
    Ecuador is one of the most exciting places on Earth right now, in terms of working towards a new development paradigm. The government is now the most stable in recent times and will soon become the longest serving in Ecuador's tumultuous history. The president's approval ratings are well over 70%. All this is due to the reorientation of the government's approach, made possible by a constitution remarkable for its recognition of human rights and the rights of nature, and its acceptance of plurality and cultural diversity.

    Perhaps, it is the commitment of their government and all their people to the creation of a biosphere. Ecuador’s government has taken the first actions required to protect the environment in their new constitution, in effect since October 20, 2008. From the Georgetown University Political Database of the Americas here is a translated chapter titled, Ecuador Rights of Nature:

    Secrets of Paradise

    Chapter 7: Rights for Nature

    Art. 71. Nature or Pachamama, where life is reproduced and exists, has the right to exist, persist, maintain and regenerate its vital cycles, structure, functions and its processes in evolution.

    Every person, people, community or nationality, will be able to demand the recognitions of rights for nature before the public organisms [organizations]. The application and interpretation of these rights will follow the related principles established in the Constitution.

    The State will motivate natural [individual] and juridical persons as well as collectives to protect nature; it will promote respect towards all the elements that form an ecosystem.

    Art. 72. Nature has the right to restoration. This integral restoration is independent of the obligation on natural and juridical persons or the State to indemnify the people and the collectives that depend on the natural systems.

    In the cases of severe or permanent environmental impact, including the ones caused by the exploitation on non-renewable natural resources, the State will establish the most efficient mechanisms for the restoration, and will adopt the adequate measures to eliminate or mitigate the harmful environmental consequences.

    Art. 73. The State will apply precaution and restriction measures in all the activities that can lead to the extinction of species, the destruction of the ecosystems or the permanent alteration of the natural cycles.

    The introduction of organisms and organic and inorganic material that can alter in a definitive way the national genetic patrimony is prohibited.

    Art. 74. The persons, people, communities and nationalities will have the right to benefit from the environment and form natural wealth that will allow wellbeing.

    The environmental services cannot be appropriated; its production, provision, use and exploitation, will be regulated by the State.

    Can we learn how to live in harmony and in peace on the planet Earth using the knowledge being offered to us from the people of Ecuador?

    The authors believe that you have now found the keys to this secret, and that by knowing these, your life will be forever changed as well.

    The Secret of Paradise
    Mysteries of the Pacific Coast of Ecuador
    Bo Rinaldi and Patricio Tamariz

    List $18.95 softcover also available in Kindle 220 pages with color illustrations and photos

    ISBN-10: 0983862303 ISBN-13: 978-0983862307

    Available wherever books are sold and on Amazon.

    Secrets of Paradise

    About the Authors
    Patricio Tamariz lives and works in Bahia de Caraquez, Ecuador. He is a national and international tourism consultant, and was the main advisor for the Organization of American States for the Andean Region for their program for helping small hotels. Patricio also has held the positions of Director of Tourism for the province of Manabí (2000), Manager for the Coast of Ecuador (2000-2003) and Undersecretary of Marketing (2010) for the Ministry of Tourism. Patricio was also appointed the Executive Director for Ecuador's first Tourism Promotion Fund (2004-2007) and helped place Ecuador for the first time as a sustainable worldwide tourism destination.

    Patricio and his family are related to the indigenous peoples of the Pacific Coast and Andes, as well as the early European settlers of Ecuador. Contained in this book is the unique perspective through his indigenous roots, his European bloodline and his modern day vision of Paradise on Earth.

    Bo Rinaldi is an entrepreneur, chef, and co-owner of the acclaimed Blossoming Lotus restaurant in Portland. He is the co-author of numerous books including Vegan Fusion (with Mark Reinfeld) and four Complete Idiot's Guides(Juice Fasting, Green Smoothies, Eating Raw, and Low-Fat Vegan Cooking). Bo was one of the founders of the organic food movement in the California Sixties, got involved in the PC Revolution as the VP Marketing for ComputerLand, was the EVP for the largest boutique Software Consulting firm in Silicon Valley. He lives in Lake Oswego, outside of Portland, Oregon.

    Bo first visited Ecuador in 1970 as a botanist seeking new natural plant based medicines from the Amazon and the Andes. Bo immediately fell in love with Ecuador, its people and its rich culture. While developing a sustainable land project on the Pacific Coast of Ecuador in 2011, Bo met Patricio Tamariz and the result of that first meeting is this book, The Secret of Paradise.


    The articles on this website are provided for information purposes only. does not accept any responsibility or liability for the use or misuse of the article content on this site or reliance by any person on the site's contents.

    No Implied Endorsement: does not endorse or recommend any article on this site or any product, service or information found within said articles. The views and opinions of the authors who have submitted articles to belong to them alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of

    A cradle in Motherland
    by Amy-collé Barry

    If Africa is the cradle of humanity, I found my cradle there: in Ndem For years, I had been looking for my small paradise, a place where life would be enjoyable. A simple, welcoming land at the source of my identity. I was even ready to go and live in a Rastafarian community in Jamaica, to tell you the truth!

    In brief. I am Senegalese, I am 36 years old, and I had been looking for authenticity for 20 years. Should I explain?... That I am trying to own what I am, a Negress who wants to embrace her culture, her differences and go back to the source of this negritude. I crossed the world. I left Africa, my native Dakar, to go to Europe. Then I did a small tour in Asia. India upset me , but I found only a little bit mat copy of Africa there (as it is described in the Egyptian period, in the work of Cheick Anta Diop, Nations Négres and Culture). I was very touched by the Caribbean’s but, I still missed the wilderness of Africa that was so (this part of wild shade of Africa)anchored in me and which shouted with quite a lot of strength.

    On returning to Dakar, I had a walk of the side Bambay. You exit the city, and there opens an immense field of Baobabs which extends overhundreds of kilometers, with nothing else in view.Then you leave the road and take the dirt track Others will name it a track, or...The heat is excruciating, the wind is also warm. In the car, it is The heat is excruciating, the wind is also warm. In the car, it issilent. I cannot speak. My heart says to me that I am going to arrive and that I shall have the answer. The answer that’s been buried in me for millenaries.

    As we say so well the road to paradise is long and a little difficult. I am incredibly zen this morning. Sticky. I have to get out under the scorching heat to push the car. The sand is burning . The shepherds help us. They come on their own, push the car and put us in the right direction. We get lost, we go round in circles, a little. I am still zen. Patience becomes again my best friend, even though I’m well known for my speediness. There, we say to ourselves that it is necessary to be attentive to what is going to take place, it is important. Fields of baobabs stopwith the most majestic, the most massive of them, and here is theentrance of the village of Ndem.

    I had seen this baobab years before in a dream. I was at its feet and the biggest and blackest man I had ever seen, gave me a lesson about life. Today I am in front of the same majestic tree which symbolizes the goddess Hator (the goddess of the sycamore which I chose as a guide, or which was imposed upon me) and I say to myself that I have arrived at my final destination. I found my paradise.

    Once the entrance is crossed, we are wrapped in a dense serenity,as if we were entering a kingdom in which time would be suspended at once and at the same time would continue to flow with the normal rhythm. I want to say that "I met myself again ", as if my soul and I had just jumped again into my carnal envelope, as Platoon described it. This part of oneself that we can spend a lifetime looking for, I found it in the bend of a street in my "cradle", in this place where life begins.

    In my whole life, I had never seen a village that emanated that kind of peace, simplicity, authenticity and spirituality: these qualities manifest through the burning sand you walk on and slowly propagate through out your whole body. They also manifest through the inhabitants who say hello to you with a reverence as in the time of Damels: we kneel down and remain in this position during the 5 to 10 minutes that the greetings last. We lower our heads; take news from the whole family with genuine expressions of politenesses, in the Valaf language that we hardly hear anymore these days and with a smile which congeals your heart. I felt re-entered into African traditions that I had not seen since the time when my nanny was still alive...

    Lunch was a traditional dish with rice, groundnut and dried fish... I had never eaten anything that good. From the first moment, you know that you are at home, the energy you feel is friendly, and you say to yourselves that you cannot leave any more



    The articles on this website are provided for information purposes only. does not accept any responsibility or liability for the use or misuse of the article content on this site or reliance by any person on the site's contents.

    No Implied Endorsement: does not endorse or recommend any article on this site or any product, service or information found within said articles. The views and opinions of the authors who have submitted articles to belong to them alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of

    New Yosemite And Sequoia National Parks Tour Keeps History Of America’s “Buffalo Soldiers” Alive

    - Filmmaker Ken Burns And Leading Tour Operator Tauck Tell The Story Of Pioneering African-American Soldiers -

    NORWALK, CT (May 7, 2012) Award-winning filmmaker Ken Burns is working with Tauck, one of the world’s top tour operators, to tell the story of America’s Buffalo Soldiers as part of a new Tauck itinerary that explores San Francisco and the National Parks of Northern California, including Yosemite, Sequoia and Kings Canyon. The history of the Buffalo Soldiers in the parks is one of several cultural narratives that Tauck will highlight in its new, all-inclusive, 8-day guided journey, “Yosemite And Sequoia: John Muir’s California.” Other themes weaving through the Tauck itinerary include the story of visionary naturalist John Muir and the creation of America’s National Parks system.

    The Buffalo Soldiers were African-American U.S. Army troops who served in the American West and elsewhere during the late 1800s and early 1900s. Native American in origin, the term “Buffalo Soldier” has been attributed variously to the soldiers’ fierce fighting ability, and to the resemblance of the soldiers’ hair to a tuft of fur found atop the heads of buffalos.

    Tour Operator Tauck
    What is more firmly established is that Buffalo Soldiers from the 9th Cavalry and 24th Infantry were garrisoned in San Francisco’s Presidio in 1899, shortly after Yosemite and Sequoia were established as national parks. Seeking to protect the parks’ resources in the era before park rangers, the Army deployed the Buffalo Soldiers to the parks to prevent illegal grazing and poaching, discourage timber thieves and serve a host of other functions. Performing admirably despite having little official authority, the Buffalo Soldiers endured long hours in the saddle, separation from home and family, and the overt racism common to the era.

    According to filmmaker Burns, the Buffalo Soldiers had “the very complicated and difficult task of trying to take care of this place, being African-Americans in a country that had just freed the slaves, but was not yet sure what the African-American role would be in our society.” Burns, who created the award-winning documentary series “The National Parks: America’s Best Idea,” sees the story of the Buffalo Soldiers as a way of weaving African-American history into the National Parks experience.

    “We’ve had in the United States a very complicated history with race, obviously. But what we’ve tended to leave out is the story of African-Americans, not as a separate part of our national narrative, but interwoven with it,” said Burns. “The significance of the Buffalo Soldiers is a way for African-Americans to say, ‘We are part of this history,’ ‘We have been part of this history.’ They are – in fact – a huge part of the history. And with regards to the National Parks, they are crucial.”

    Tauck’s “Yosemite And Sequoia: John Muir’s California” itinerary begins with two nights in San Francisco, where guided sightseeing will include a visit to the historic Presidio where the Buffalo Soldiers were garrisoned. At the Presidio, Tauck guests will learn of the Buffalo Soldiers’ roots in the post-Civil War era, their service with Teddy Roosevelt’s “Rough Riders” in Cuba, and their role in the Philippine-American War. In Sequoia National Park. Tauck guests will hear the story of Buffalo Soldiers commander Charles Young, the third African-American to graduate from West Point and the first to oversee one of America’s National Parks. Guests will also get Burns’s own personal perspectives on the Buffalo Soldiers during a special 20-minute film produced exclusively for Tauck, featuring interview footage with Burns and special excerpts from his National Parks documentary.

    A true highlight for many guests on the Tauck journey will take place in Yosemite National Park, when they have the opportunity to “meet” a Buffalo Soldier as portrayed by Shelton Johnson. An African-American Park Ranger and Buffalo Soldiers expert, Johnson is an author and educator who has been awarded the National Park Service’s highest honor for ranger interpretation. Johnson was prominently featured in the Burns National Parks documentary, and his “in-character,” interpretive presentation is a special Tauck-exclusive experience.

    Tauck’s Yosemite tour (from $4,290 per person, double-occupancy, plus airfare) begins with a two-night stay at The Weston St. Francis in San Francisco, complete with guided sightseeing. The itinerary next includes a pair of two-night stays at “inside-the-park” lodges in Sequoia and Yosemite National Parks (with daily sightseeing and other activities), before concluding with a final night at the Fairmont San Francisco.

    Those interested in more information should contact their local travel professional, call Tauck at 1 800 468 2825, or visit


    The articles on this website are provided for information purposes only. does not accept any responsibility or liability for the use or misuse of the article content on this site or reliance by any person on the site's contents.

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