Travel Deals and Steals: Minneapolis; Paris, Rome and London tours; sailings on the Rhine and Danube; the Bahamas

Must Try

The Commons Hotel puts you near downtown Minneapolis; try a ‘Rome Wine and Food Tasting Tour’; take the kids for free to the Bahamas’ Grand Lucayan

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Consider yourself among the smart set when you stay at The Commons Hotel, close to downtown Minneapolis on the University of Minnesota campus.

Steal: Book the “E=mc² Meals and Cocktails” package for rates starting at $109 per night through Dec. 31. This package includes cocktails for two, overnight accommodations and the choice of daily breakfast or lunch for two.

Experience: Catch a baseball game at Target Field, home of the Minnesota Twins, explore the Minneapolis Institute of Art and walk the Mall of America in nearby Bloomington. The mall has 4.2 million square feet of retail space with more than 500 stores, 50 eateries and several nightclubs. And here’s a bonus: Minnesota purchases do not carry sales tax.

Book it! Online at or by calling (800) 822-6757.


Immerse yourself in a European hot spot with a culturally immersive tour from City Wonders.

Deal: Book by Aug. 31 for 30% off wine tours in Paris and Rome or a VIP theater visit to London.

Book the “Wine Tasting & Hidden Gems of Paris” walking tour for access to a private wine-tasting class at O Chateau, an award-winning Parisian wine bar, starting at $50.43 per adult. Or pick “The Rome Wine and Food Tasting Tour,” a journey through Italy’s culinary culture with special experiences, led by an expert sommelier. These events are tailored to regional delicacies, including Italy’s finest wines. Priced start at $64.44 per adult.

Or select a third option: “London’s VIP Phantom of the Opera Tour” includes dinner in the theater district, tickets to the show and an unprecedented backstage tour, starting at $176.25 per adult.

Experience: City Wonders helps take your European vacation beyond the typical sights. The one-of-a-kind tours make sightseeing an authentic, personal, culturally immersive experience.

Book it! Visit or phone 1-800-358-1942.

AmaWaterways has a special offer on balcony staterooms — making wine-tastings that much more special.AmaWaterways has a special offer on balcony staterooms — making wine-tastings that much more special.


Imagine sailing the Rhine, Danube and Douro Rivers on an itinerary designed to your ultimate wish list. AmaWaterways can make that dream a reality.

Deal: Take $1,500 off balcony staterooms for select sailings March to October 2015. This offer must be booked by Aug. 31, 2014, for travel through 2015. Fares are all-inclusive.

Experience: Choose among 12 itineraries. The Enchanting Rhine is a seven-night cruise from Amsterdam to Basel, Switzerland, for $3,048 per person (embarking March 26 and April 29; a savings of $500). Provence & Spain is a seven-night cruise from Lyon to Arles for $3,798 per person (embarking July 16 and August 13; a savings of $1,000). The Wine Cruise: Paris & Normandy is a seven-night round-trip sailing from Paris for $3,248 per person (embarking April 23; a savings of $1,500).

Book it! Visit or call (800) 626-0126.


Steal: Here’s one where you have to decide quickly. Book the Bahamas-based “Summer Deal” at the Grand Lucayan before Monday, Aug. 11, for travel between Aug. 18 and Sept. 1. With this steal, receive 40% off rates and $450 worth of credits. (That’s $200 in air, plus $250 in resort credits applicable toward dining, spa, golf and tennis). Also, children 12 and under stay free all summer long. Rates from $125 per night.

Experience: There are warm sandy beaches with clear blue waters, a 24-hour casino, biking, hiking, sailing and more. There’s something for everyone and an authentic, serene backdrop to reconnect and recharge.

Book it! Online at or by phone at (855) 708-6671.