My wife and I love to travel, but because of a highly restricted diet, we prefer lodgings with a full kitchen. Is there a Web site or association with listings of so-called travel condos?
Renting a condominium not only offers the advantages of a kitchen and such amenities as a washer and dryer, housekeeping and other hotel conveniences, but it frequently is less expensive than paying for a hotel room. One source of information for condos in the continental United States and Hawaii is ResortQuest, founded in 1998 and based in Nashville, which manages 20,000 rental properties at 52 resort areas; toll-free 1-800-467-3529 or www.resortquest.com.
Another resource is ResorTime.com, in Carlsbad, Calif., which offers hundreds of time share resort condos in North America to the general public, with no minimum stay required. While you do not have to become a member to book a condo with the company, members get weekly updates on availability, a directory and special rates (a premier membership costs $29.95 a year). Information: toll-free 1-877-477-7368 or www.resortime.com.
VacationCondos.com, toll-free 1-800-932-6658, is a company that lists properties but does not manage them; it specializes in Florida resorts and has listings in Mexico and the Caribbean as well. Condos range from economy (small kitchenettes, limited living spaces, etc.) to deluxe (from self-contained resort to hillside villa with pool).
Yet another option is to check with an association of rental managers, such as Vacation Rental Managers Association, whose members represent more than 130,000 properties in the United States, Canada and Mexico (www.vrma.com).
Prague, Vienna and music
Are there companies that arrange travel to Prague and Vienna that would include tickets to concerts and attractions associated with musicians of the 18th to 20th centuries?
One company that might fit the bill is Morgan Tours, in Ottawa, which has offered cultural tours since 1979. Next year it is offering a Prague-Vienna-Budapest tour, May 8-22, but you may take only the Prague-Vienna part of the tour, May 8-18. Included in the shorter trip are eight performances and tours in Prague of the Dvorak Museum; Villa Bertramka, where Mozart stayed; and Vysehrad, where Dvorak and Smetana are buried. Stops in and near Vienna include the home of Janacek in Brno and Figaro House, where Mozart composed Le Nozze di Figaro. The price is $5,445 a person, double, for the Prague-Vienna trip, including all tickets but not air fare. Information: toll-free 1-800-667-4268 or www.morgantours.com.
Or you might consider Cross-Culture, in Amherst, Mass., which will offer a music-themed Prague, Vienna and Salzburg trip next year, Aug. 4-14. The itinerary will include World Heritage Sites, numerous performances and tours of museums and gardens. The price is $3,495 a person, double occupancy, without air fare. In addition, the company offers Prague and the International Music Festival each September, which includes three festival performances as well as tours of the city, with visits to music-related attractions in Prague and in Bohemia, where Mahler, Dvorak, Smetana, Martinu, Mozart and Beethoven spent time. This year's tour, $3,020 a person, double, without air fare, is sold out. Next year the tour is set for Sept. 28 to Oct. 6, with prices available in October. Information: toll-free 1-800-491-1148 or www.crosscultureinc.com.