Celebrity travelers: How I spent my summer vacation [Pictures]
If the falling leaves and shorter days have you pining for those carefree days of summer, we commiserate - especially after we tried to drown our end-of-summer blues in a sunny strawberries-and-creme Frappuccino only to discover it had been replaced with a dead-leaf-colored, pumpkin-spiced concoction. But rather than get your Halloween witch-face on prematurely, perhaps it's better to take the make-lemonade approach and begin planning your travels for next summer. But where to go and what to do? For inspiration, we consulted with some local personalities about where they spent their summer vacations. Bryan Voltaggio (chef and recent finalist on "Top Chef Masters"), Ava Marie (WBAL meteorologist), Ray Mitchener (owner of Baltimore's Ruth Shaw boutique) and Patti Neumann (publisher of CityPeek Inc.) were only too happy to reminisce about their adventures. -Stephanie Citron, For The Baltimore Sun
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Ray Mitchener, owner of Ruth Shaw( Spencer Platt, Getty Images / August 24, 2010 )
What he ate:"I'm serious about food, and I don't really like noisy restaurants. One of my new faves is Lafayette. It just opened in May - I think [the address is] 380 Lafayette St. in NoHo. I also like very much Marea at 240 Central Park South. It's rather pricey, but the food is amazing."
Highlights: "I love New York. There is so much to see and do. There seems to be a market and dry cleaner on just about every corner. It's easy to get around the city. Yeah, I think New York would be a great place to retire."
If you go: New York City is 180 miles from Baltimore. Driving is a straight shot up Interstate 95 to the New Jersey Turnpike to Exit 16 - the Lincoln Tunnel. Since highway tolls and parking are so expensive, many opt to take the train. Amtrak offers departures from Penn Station for as little as $49 each way with a three-week advance booking. In the city, Mitchener prefers to stay at the Chambers Hotel, where rates begin at $250 per night. Go to chambershotel.com. For more info on visiting New York, go to nycgo.com.