The Serendipity of Senior Malfunctions: especially when looking for hotels

Not quite true. It just grueling to find this lovely town and  check out  5 hotels before we  found The Antik Hotel.
Walkable riverside
And this picture was the reason we wanted a “walkable” hotel.  The best part of Ljubljana  is the pedestrian center.  Having checked out 5 hotels nearby, 2 of which were fully booked, and the other 3 were the “empty lobby” signal for future mobs off- the- bus  (no offense meant) , we were lucky to spot the Antik Hotel. 
Hotel Antig
This is an evening picture of the hotel, which I think, projects its warm and friendly character.  
We got the last room and it had a glassed in balcony  overlooking a marvelous  patio  and courtyard.
Antiq HotelSince we hoped to stay a few days, I elegantly tipped  our concierge and said  “That’s for finding  us a room for tomorrow night too.” He smiled  “I’ll let you know at breakfast.”  And he did!
We walked to  the “Triple Bridge” which was the pedestrian heart of this town.
Triple Bridge
Designed by the architect Jozé Plecnik (1872-1957)  (and, like Gaudi in Spain , an unrecognized genius), he went on to design parks and rearranged squares, converting a provincial backwater into the gorgeous Capital of a newly emerged  independent nation. Consequently, to us, the meeting of these rivers was the focal point. 
 Heart of Three Rivers
 And this was the reason we continued to search for a hotel nearby.  Now lunch.
Look at the very top of the picture and you can see the Castle buried in greenery  and overseeing the town.  Being Americans, we decided to walk up the mountain. It was a zigzag dirt pathway,  hot, buggy, but on the plus side, we only lost the trail once.
In the 12th century, the Spanheim Corinthian Dukes built this stone fortress to remind the village below  who was “boss”. Rebuilt after the 1511 earthquake ,  the Castle slid to rock bottom by becoming a prison and almshouse by the 20th century.  Now in the 21st  century, the Castle has been converted to a lovely Cultural center. We viewed parts of it from the 12th to the 21st century.  
Castle Ljubljanski Center Weary, we took the funicular down to the city.  You can see that all of us stood at the front of the cage, overlooking the city….until it started.  It  descended…..just as it looks….and all of us vied for a back corner!  
 Ljubljana Castle  
Later we saw some Roman ruins.  There were no signs about the structures (as if we could read them anyway) but I did discover that the Romans had been here for over 500 years. 
 roman ruins palaceWhen Rome collapsed,  the troops withdrew in AD 395. It’s amazing that these artifacts remained for  2000 plus years with the invasions of over 100  of other countries, cultures and  religions. From the history it seems the invasions began when the Romans built some fantastic roads, developed  vineyards and produced wine, and best of all, built housing with heated floors!
Spajza RestaurantWe had hoped to dine at Spajza’s Restaurant that eve but the gracious maître’D  said that they were scheduled   for a conference.  Thanking him we turned to go but he said “Wait—we have an outside courtyard if you would like.”   He brought out candles and lap blankets.  In the picture  we were seated in the back left corner under an umbrella. Our only companion was a big, black, furry dog who sat nearby. He only rose when I waved a chunk of lamb and was very delicate with his enormous teeth.  Mike and the waiter conversed  using the International language of wine about our bottle.    
A most enjoyable meal.
Heading back to our hotel by ‘3 Rivers’ 
Night lifeI think this pic shows the conviviality  of the people in this Capital of Ljubljana, much of which emerged in obtaining their freedom in 1991.
Dragon Bridge, Ljubjana
The “Dragon” statue was named by the people of Ljubljana. This disappointed the governor who spent the money for the bridge. But the name is very apt for the courage of the populous. DRAGON.

(Our concierge was very interested in what we saw and felt. On our last evening he offered another day at one half of the price.)




About carolinebotwin

Caroline Botwin and her husband Mike are retired educators who have always had a yen for travelling: he with a PH.D and teaching Architectural Engineering plus California wine education, and she having taught high school English, speech and drama. Both wanted to learn first hand about other cultures. While Mike predominately studied buildings and structures and met with winemakers, Caroline hunted for ancient sites and peoples. And kept journals of all their travels.
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