Cheese, Chocolate and Surfing – How to Indulge in all Three this March!

Dear Friends,

Little by little, our world of luxury rental properties and experiences is expanding – an exceptional new home here, a fun experience there… I am proud that we can offer so many different types of homes with so many fun diversions – things to see, to do and to learn; experiences just waiting to happen!

This month, I’d like to introduce you to some of the amazing new properties we have been lucky enough to find here in Mexico and others joining our TRIPWIX world in Portugal.

As often seems to happen on this page, I find myself referring again and again to food. Surprisingly enough, this month there are no direct citations to alcohol, or even for that fact, beverages at all!

Considering I spent my childhood in Portugal, it’s quite strange that, until recently, I have never been a cheese fan.

I’m really not sure what happened to me at the end of my fourth decade of gastronomy but something (or maybe it was Lisa – my cheese lover) told me that possibly I was missing out on a whole food group that was not only extremely tasty on its own merit, but that went exceptionally well with red wine. What a revelation!

Perhaps I had not only been missing out on different varieties of yummy yellow stuff but maybe I had also been overlooking entire grape varietals which would pair perfectly with these configurations of curds and whey!

Thus, I embarked on a cheese eating pilgrimage. I have to admit, I still have a hard time with some of the smellier varieties, even if they are the perfect match for a fine Port wine!


Queijo Serra da Estrela
Queijo Serra da Estrela – Marvelous paired with a robust red from the Dão Valley


On a recent trip back to the motherland, I was offered a young Queijo Serra da Estrela, probably one of the best known, and loved, cheeses in Portugal. It was, indeed, quite marvelous paired with a robust red from the Dão Valley.

The food and wines in this undiscovered part of Portugal are quite excellent and still virtually unknown to the rest of the world. If cheese and wine are of interest, I recommend a visit to this beautiful part of Portugal – especially as we have a super knowledgeable host, Maria Amaral, waiting to greet and guide our guests. Maria is also the proud owner of an elegant manor home – Solar de Vilar.

Solar de Vilar
Solar de Vilar – A Completely Restored 18th-century Manor Home.


On the other hand, I cannot say I have ever taken years away from eating chocolate. In fact, if I had my way, every day would start and end with chocolate. Lisa and I both LOVE chocolate! We have been known to be quite fussy about the ratio of cocoa solids to sugars, milk vs semi-sweet vs bitter, country of origin, etc. But, on the whole, we will eat anything that resembles chocolate. In our home there is no hiding chocolate from the other – there is never any left to hide!

Óbidos Castle
Satisfy Your Sweet Tooth at the Óbidos Chocolate Festival


Therefore, I’m very happy to bring your attention to a wonderful, fun, chocoholic experience which takes place in one of the most charming towns in Portugal, Óbidos. From March 10 to April 2, 2017, the Óbidos Chocolate Festival will be in full swing. I recommend a stay at the rustically chic Rio do Prado Hotel, just far enough away to burn off calories going to and from the nearby celebration of decadence.

Back Home in Sunny Mexico

A great base for village and resort life in Punta Mita has to be Hacienda de Mita. Right on the doorstep of shopping, restaurants and paddle/ surfboard rentals – this development has easy access to all that Punta de Mita offers. Check out our new, super well-located unit, HDM #506.

The Best Surfing in Punta de Mita

Unfortunately, I cannot say I feel the urge to try the surfing tips that we posted in February. Surfing just isn’t my thing, nor, as you’ll read in her surf blog, is it Lisa’s.

Having said that, we are featuring some amazing new properties which sit right on some of the best surf spots in the area – La Lancha, La Bahia, Burros, Sayulita… I can and do get into the full surfer spirit every time I visit one of these beauties.

Even as a non-surfer, there are just wonderful relaxing and restorative powers associated with the waves – the spray, the sound, the colours… And, of course, watching the talented local wave riders who are making it all look so effortless!


A fabulous home which gives me the ideal viewing spot to sit and watch the surf break is Sueños del Alma in Punto del Burro. With an on-the-beach cabana equipped with all the mod cons like cozy day beds, surround sound and an on-call butler – I can’t think of anywhere better to sit, relax and enjoy sipping on an icy tequila. This home is ideal for surf-loving families and wave watchers like me!

Sueños del Alma
Sueños del Alma: The Ultimate Beach Retreat.


So, the TRIPWIX family of properties grows, as does your support and the mounting interest and bookings of your friends. Our hosts in Spain and Portugal are searching hard to bring us more exclusive, exceptional properties. And, we are all working hard to create excellence in rental property hospitality.

Miguel Carvalho

Miguel Neves de Carvalho is Portuguese, from the southern region of Portugal, Alentejo. But, he considers himself a citizen of the world, having lived in Portugal, Mozambique, USA, Hong Kong, Macau, Dubai, and now, Mexico. For Miguel, the world seems a relatively easy place to get around as he speaks fluent Portuguese, English, Spanish and French and has a good understanding of Italian. His passion is to travel in order to eat and drink! Offer him the most unusual local dishes anywhere in the world and he is curious to try it and he will want to know what drink is typically served with it. Other passions include polo, horse riding, rugby, cigars and most recently ... golf.

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