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Trip Report 9/17: Toledo, Granada, Cordoba, Brussels

A few pluses and one minus:
Toledo: cathedral is amazing, Rick's recommended hotel "Hotel Santa Isabel" had a tiny room but was clean, well appointed, great location, and charming floors and courtyard. His recommended El Botero Taberna restaurant was de-lish (had the tasting menu).

Granada: Rick's recommended hotel "Casa del Capitel Nazari" was lovely, clean, we got a room with a private balcony with view of Alhambra, lovely courtyards, friendly staff, great location - only drawback was noise at night from the street on Saturday night and Sunday morning. We took a fabulous Tapas Tour with Gayle Mackie (Gayle's Granada Tapas Tours) from his book - she is awesome! Cannot say enough about her warm and charming personality and unique experience. Do it!

Cordoba: Mosque was amazing. Stayed in a hotel that was not in Rick's book but was great and should be considered: "Hotel Las Casas de La Juderia de Cordoba". Big room, pool, clean, well appointed, fabulous courtyards with honor bar, and archaeological ruins onsite. Found the actual functioning mosque and nearby was a middle eastern "tea room" that had charming tables and delicious middle eastern food.

Brussels: Please be warned about Rick's recommended "Hotel La Madeleine": it is filthy. The room is small and I don't mind that for a lower price, but I do mind filth and there were dirty carpets, unidentified liquids splashed on the hallway wall, scuff marks and dirt on the walls in the room, and a dirty bath towel left for 24 hours on a bench in the hall. The second day I woke to itchy red spots on my neck. It is a primo location but splurge on a more expensive hotel or move to a less primo location.

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