Again, worked today so not much to report. I did go to dinner w my co workers & my husband at Balkon Restaurant right in Lotte Plaza: http://balkon-restaurant.ru/
Very nice atmosphere, very big & airy yet cozy. Bread everywhere (seriously). very attentive service. English menu available for food, but they said not for drink menu. Giant bread basket for all. i kept dropping my napkin for some reason and they kept giving me a new one. I had a Pimm's cup for a drink - that turned out to be a pitcher of Pimm's. Yum. Husband ordered a Gin (Hendricks) and Tonic and he asked for a double but he said it was more like like a quadruple. (he also received the rest of the tonic water bottle on the side.) I had a yummy Carbonara and he had Sea Bass he said was perfect. Service attentive yet discreet the whole time. Not bad price (esp for area) as we had 7 people w drinks & some desserts and tea and it was 15,270 rubles ( $452.16 USD)
Stopped in Lotte Hotel bar for a nightcap drink - Macallan for the husband and i had a mojito that was full of crushed ice and tons of mint - very fresh. Stellar service @ the lounge/ car area. i as much as put my straw wrapper down & they swooped in & picked it up.
Husband did Tsaritsyno Park today - hard to find from the Metro stop, even though close to Metro stop. (stay tuned for review). He also noted you paid for a ticket, had to check your bag & wear booties over your shoes - yet there was no direction on where to go/ where not to go. He said H & a bunch of families were just wandering around the mansion - not knowing what to do. No maps available & he noted a lot of doors said "no entry", but then people were in & out of those doors. He noted there were staircases that weren't roped off & didn't have a sign, but when they went up the 3 floors, at the TOP of the stairs was a "no entry" sign & rope. He noted there are only two rooms furnished to the period & the rest are basically empty. He noted there were odd "modern tapestries" in some places. He noted he did get to see Dostoyevsky's desk & Chekhov's cane & Pushkin's spectacles .. but not much else. The wooded areas around are huge & easy to get lost in, but very pretty.
He then viewed the "Musical Fountain" in the park - and laughed. He noted its a "normal fountain" and that it was blasting modern Muzak music. He said it was horrible & he kept waiting for a) the fountain to "do something magical" or b) some applicable music to come on. Nope. Perhaps it only performs at night or at certain times? He said it was playing Stevie Wonder Muzak. (There is video - we will post.)
We're super tired & trying to call it an early night. Still a bit light here @ 11pm.
Tomorrow: we are trying for St. Basil's, History Museum... and we'll see what else. Co workers noted an arch/ dome in Mayakovskaya as they noted the 'legend' of "It is thus possible to throw a coin in from one side of the arch, and it will land on the other side. "