Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Tien-Lai with Catherine (tons o' pics)

Yangmingshan is great. We had a wonderful time. Catherine and I had a relaxing stay in the mountains. It was nice to get away from the city for a few days.

We hopped on a bus in Taipei for the trip to the park. The bus was packed and we were stuck standing up. After about 20 minutes, we both decided to ditch the bus as soon as possible and grab a taxi. The bus dropped us off on the way up there. This getaway was about relaxation so I wasn't keen about a roller coaster ride on a crappy bus. After a few minutes Catherine spotted a taxi and we resumed our journey. About 40 minutes and US$20 later we arrived at the hotel. The resort is very nice. Incredibly comfortable and quiet.

I was on a mission to give Catherine a birthday to remember. I think we had an excellent time and she won't soon forget her big day.

Check out the following pictures for the story of our stay, they aren't in any particular order because my brain just doesn't function that way...

These are the first things in the hotel room that Catherine noticed, they are the coolest slippers I have come across.

A view from the balcony of our room. Very quiet. I didn't see a car roll down the road while we were there. I just enjoyed sitting out there and listening to the birds and bugs.

This is one of the spring pools. They have about 15 of these little pools all with different compositions. This one is a hot one with rose oils added to it. This one was my favorite, it was just the right temperature.

The waterfall pool. It felt great to sit under the falls. I liked this one even though it was a bit cold.

The hotel has two separate buildings. This is the lobby in the newer building. This is the building we stayed in, it was beautiful.

The view from the balcony outside of the restaurant. You can see the newer building on the right.

Our bath. This is on the balcony of our hotel room. The bath is fed directly from a hot spring. I thought it was so cool to have our little hot spring in our room. The knobs allow you to temper the heat with some cool water. It has little doors on the left that open and let you soak in the bath and look out at the mountains. Notice the two entrances onto the balcony, one from the bathroom and one from the bedroom, good stuff.

I love this shot. She is soooooooo cute! We were getting ready for the BBQ dinner on Sunday night.

In the lobby of the old building. Very tastefully decorated. I was shocked how empty the place was. It was nice to not have to fight crowds like we do every day in Taipei.

Another view from the balcony of our room. The local architecture and mountains made me feel like I was back in the U.S., somewhere in the southwest.

Another picture of my cutie pie. She seemed to really be enjoying her birthday.

Here she is in the green tea spring pool. I never thought anyone could possibly look good in one of those silly swim caps, she proved me wrong.

It's customary to rinse off between turns in the various pools. The water jets in the middle made it fun between dips.

The hotel should use this shot in their brochure. What a sexy girl!

The view from the elevator. You can see that there were very few cars in the parking lot. We picked a good time to be there.

Catherine in front of the really cool waterfall swimming pool.

The same pool at night. The far side of the pool looks like it falls off the side of the mountain.

Perfection! The cutest legs and feet I have ever seen. Catherine isn't crazy about me making this picture public but I can't help it, it's too fun.

A view of the newer building and the BBQ area. The meal was delicious. Several cooks constructed 2 giant fire pits and made some very tasty dishes.

The juniper spring pool. Catherine explained the benefits of the various pools but I forgot most of them...ugh.

One of the many lovely views of the mountains.

And another.

And again. I think I was a bit overwhelmed by the serenity out there. I have been trapped in Taipei for far too long.

Another swimming pool. I believe there were 3 large pools on the property.

The insanely comfortable bed. A western-style bed with VERY expensive bedding is enough to bring me to

The entrance to the balcony/bath from the bathroom. The front desk said this was a Japanese style room, I guess the door and bathroom area is what they were talking about.

Getting ready to chow down at the BBQ.

Feeding our faces. We tried lots of different dishes. The salad was really fresh and they had some scrumptious thousand-island dressing.

Relaxing after dinner. I just can't resist taking pictures of Catherine...

OK, this is embarrassing. This was her first time playing goofy golf and she beat me! Nothing like losing to a first-timer to bring ya back down to Earth.

The entrance to the European side of the property. I am not sure what the difference is between these rooms and the Japanese styled ones we stayed in.

Another look at the spring pool area.

Just before we left on Monday, the hotel invited us to chow on some cake. They had several different kinds including a tasty coffee mousse. It was a nice extra provided by a very well run hotel.

I just had to snap this one. Mango PADDING?? Ya gotta love the butchery of the English language.

I hope you enjoyed this seemingly endless tale of our stay in Yangminghan. If this looks like a place you'd like to check out, feel free to contact me, I have some good info on the hotel.

It was a lot of fun...I love you Catherine.


benny said...

just came across your blog and great pics! I don't know if I'll have a chance to stay in that hotel but if I do I'll definitely go. What's the name of it?

David said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
David said...

thanks for checking out the blog. we had fun on this trip.

the name of the hotel is Tienlai Spring Resort.

check out their website:

have fun,

Anonymous said...

Dave! Hey its Chris from Atlanta! Its been a long time, and I have been thinking about ya! Looks like you have adjusted pretty well. I have seen the Black Keys twice now! Best performance ever! They rock! Keep in touch. Later!

jill said...

hello david!! i miss you and think about you every day. looks like you and catherine have been having the time of your she cleaned your clock at putt-putt ha ha. she's my kind of girl!!tell her happy birthday from me. i already adore her because she makes you so happy. take care, love, jill

David said...

wow, it's great to hear from the two of you.

Chris, i will be emailing you soon, keep an eye peeled for it. glad you are still rocking to The Black Keys, they are incredible.

Jill, i miss you so much. i am sure the kids are keeping you REALLY busy. it's a bummer that i can't see the kids grow up. i hope you have been able to spend lots of time with mom lately. i talk to her occasionally and it sounds like she is doing some good stuff with the house. i am not sure what your email is...if you read this, email me so i can get your address!

take care folks!