Enterprising Austin and its Travel Agency/Bar Hybrid

Departure LoungeDrinking fine wine is an important part of many of our travels (especially if you’re a Napa¬†and Sonoma¬†junkie like I am), but how about sipping your favorite varietal as a way to make the actual planning of the trip easier to swallow? And no, I’m not talking about pouring yourself some cheap Pinot Grigio while you sit on kayak.com. Leave it to enterprising Austin to open the first ever travel agency / bar hybrid — and I just happened to be in town for its grand opening. The bar was fun enough (and the treats tasty enough) to hang out at even if your Next Big Trip isn’t around the corner, and I love the idea of attracting like-minded travel folk to one locale, regardless of actual trip-planning needs. But while you’re there, why not flip through some guidebooks to see what luxury travel might entice you?

Allow me to introduce you to Departure Lounge.

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Costa Rica coffee yum

Costa Rica coffee is some of the most renowned in the world. I have never returned from a trip there without 1820 and Cafe Britt in my suitcase for somebody — I’ve even twice mailed it to strangers (aka online travel friends) who had a craving for it! Me? I don’t drink coffee. I have enough problems turning off my brain to sleep at night without adding caffeine to the mix. While I was living in Spain during college, I was in a (ten-year) “no red meat” phase, and during my year in Costa Rica, I didn’t drink coffee. Sigh. Well, during my recent trip, my friends (locals) drank enough coffee for me.

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