Chalet Zermatt Peak

Here in Arizona the temps have been holding steady in the 100 to 105 F range for days now. Which means I’m daydreaming of a day on the slopes, followed by an apres-ski soiree. Of course, stunning views of the Matterhorn wouldn’t hurt either.

I think a catered chalet at Chalet Zermatt Peak might do …

Its location? Dramatically situated overlooking Zermatt, the village at the foot of the Matterhorn, at the end of the Nikolaital Valley, on the Italian border of the Canton du Valais in the west of Switzerland.

Doesn’t it seem like the sort of picture-perfect place James Bond might run around?

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Inside the Colosseum

While in Rome, I made a repeat visit to the Colosseum, aka the Flavian Amphitheatre. In its day — it was completed in 80 AD — it could seat 50,000 people.

A lot more of the Colosseum would still be standing had it not been used as a quarry for stone and bronze later in its existence, as well as suffered from violent earthquakes. It’s incredible to try to imagine what it must have looked like the day of its grand opening, isn’t it?

The arena is shorter than a football field, a little more than 270 feet at its longest section.

The arena’s floor is long gone, but without it, you can see into the areas where the animals, gladiators and other people used to run around.

[Photos by Marie Look]

Six Things in Rome

I have visited Rome once before, in 2005 — the week Pope John Paul II died and Pope Benedict was elected. But the city was crazy busy at that time, of course, so it’s been wonderful to get to come back this week and experience Rome all over again, without the excessive crowds.

I’m trying to squeeze in as much as possible by day, walking a lot and taking more photos than I can review each evening. Slowly but surely, I’ll work my way through all of it — the city and the photos. Here are just glimpses of six things I’ve seen so far this week.

[Photos by Marie Look]