June 1, 1997

Many Hotels In Paris Are Dog-Friendly

Carl Sommers New York Times
 

Q. I will be traveling to Paris this summer with my 10-pound dog. Are there hotels in good sections that accept dogs in guest rooms?

A. Anyone who eats at a Parisian restaurant and sees the dogs dining with their owners will not be surprised that dogs are often welcomed at Parisian hotels, too. Of course, you should not assume any hotel will accept them and just arrive with your dog.

But rather than starting by locating dog-friendly hotels, you might start by selecting hotels from guidebooks or other sources based on price, location and so on, and then ask if they accept dogs. If a hotel says it does, let those who take reservations know your dog will be arriving with you, as sometimes only some rooms are set aside for dogs. And make sure you tell them how big your dog is; your 10-pounder should be fine in most places, but some hotels do not accept bigger animals. Despite the welcome, human guests are usually responsible for taking food, bowls, doggie bed or pillow and anything else your dog may require.

Q. Is it possible to get tickets beforehand to see the Uffizi and Pitti Palace in Florence and Leonardo da Vinci’s “Last Supper” in Milan?

A. The answer is yes to one of the three attractions, the Uffizi. There, for about $1.25 above the standard admission of $7.50 (calculated at 1,600 lire to the dollar) reservation holders can bypass waits of up to three hours. Under the system instituted last fall, a group of 30 reservation holders is admitted every 20 minutes between 8:50 a.m. and 5:10 p.m. The Uffizi is open from 8:30 until 6:50 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday.

Reservations can be made by phone by calling (39-55) 471960, or in person by visiting the Informazioni Turistiche Alberghiere office at 9/A Viale Gramsci or its tourist information office in the central train station, Santa Maria Novella. The two offices are open Monday to Friday from 8 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.

When reserving by phone, you will be asked to send a fax stating the confirmed time and date of the reserved visit, and giving your name, a credit card number and the expiration date. Tickets reserved and paid for with a credit card - payment must be made no sooner than five days before the reservation date - can be picked up directly at the Uffizi on the day of the visit. The fax number is (39-55) 2478232. Reservations can be made as far ahead as one wants, and the museum urges people to reserve well in advance. However, because not everyone makes payment by the five-day deadline, it is not unusual for there to be openings four or five days ahead.

There is no such arrangement for the two other sites. Both advise arriving early to avoid waits.

The Pitti, (39-55) 2388614, is open Tuesday to Saturday from 8:30 a.m to 7 p.m. and on Sunday and holidays from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Admission is $7.50.

In Milan, Leonardo’s “Last Supper,” in Piazza Santa Maria delle Grazie, (39-2) 4987588, is open Tuesday to Sunday from 8 a.m. to 1:45 p.m. Admission is $7.50. Visits are limited to 40 people at a time who are only allowed to remain inside for 15 minutes.

Q. I would like to take my dad on a trip to some of the major league ballparks. Do you know of any companies that have tours to different stadiums?

A. There is one such company, Sports Tours. This season it offers 15 five-to seven-day tours called Sporting News Fan Trips (run in conjunction with The Sporting News magazine). One, for example, begins June 23 at Jacobs Field in Cleveland with a game between Cleveland and Minnesota; on June 24 the visit is to Tiger Stadium in Detroit as the Yankees play the Tigers; on June 25 participants see Chicago play the Cardinals at Busch Stadium in St. Louis; on the 26th and the 27th, the stop is in Chicago watching Houston play the Cubs at Wrigley Field, and on the next two days the tour visits Camden Yards to see Toronto play in Baltimore, with luxury skybox seats on the first day.

The price is $1,190 a person with two in a room; as in all the tours it includes hotel, game admissions and bus or air transportation between most of the cities.

The company also offers three-day, three-game packages and will set up custom trips. More information: Sports Tours, Post Office Box 84, Hatfield, Mass. 01038; (413) 584-7922 or (800) 722-7701, fax (413) 584-0424.

The following fields overflowed: SUPCAT = COLUMN, QUESTION & ANSWER - Travel Q&A;


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