5 Places to visit while staying in the Silicon Valley area

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Part 4 of our top 10 places to visit while relocating with SuiteAmerica – our next pit stop is Silicon Valley!

Relocating to Silicon Valley? Or do you already live there and are looking for some sites to see? We’ve put together a list of 5 places that are must see attractions for current or future residents.

Landmark_Cupertino-Historical-Museum-001-435x326Cupertino Historical Museum
This little museum tells the story of what life was like before the advent of Silicon Valley when Cupertino was just a dusty crossroads. It depicts the historical expedition of Juan Bautista de Anza which passed through in 1776, and tells of the days when the Ohlone Tribe inhabited the area.

For more information call 408.973.1495 or check out their website at http://www.cupertino.com/attractions/historical-museum.html

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Experience the fascinating high-tech world of Silicon Valley at this large 10,000 square foot museum. The entire family will see what it’s like inside the automated silicon chip factory and learn how it all began while exploring the newest emerging technologies that impact our lives each and every day.

For more information call 408.765.5050 or check out their website at http://www.museum@intel.com

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The 49ers Museum
This 20,000 square foot museum in Santa Clara is dedicated to showcasing the 49ers past, present and future. You’ll feel like part of the team as you explore the 11 unique galleries and exhibits that chronicle the years from 1946 to the present. Then let your spirit come to life as you take part in the fun and interactive displays.

For more information call 408.579.4449 or check out their website at www.museum@49ers.com

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This amusement park has been thrilling all in the Santa Clara area since 1976. It continues to be a favorite with the top-ranked “Gold Striker” wooden roller coaster and 100 foot tall double-decker carousel to the nostalgic Planet Snoopy area.

For more information call 408.988.1776 or check out their website at https://www.cagreatamerica.com/

museum_completeSunnyvale Heritage Park Museum
This museum is a near replica of the original Murphy family home. As original settlers in Santa Clara County, the Murphy family were responsible for the establishment of three towns in California. Come and explore the fascinating history of a family that played such a key role in California’s history and development.

For more information call 408.749.0220 or check out their website at http://www.heritageparkmuseum.org

Do you know of any other places to visit in Silicon Valley that you think should be added to the list? We’d love to hear from you!

Iconic Seattle…

Space Needle – Located 520 feet above the grounds of the Seattle Center, the observation deck of this iconic landmark affords spectacular 360 degree views. From the top of the needle, you can view the Seattle skyline, as well as the Olympic and Cascade Mountains, Mount Rainer, Mount Baker and Elliott Bay. Built for the 1962 World’s Fair, it is one of the tallest structures west of the Mississippi. Be sure to dine at the revolving SkyCity restaurant and enjoy breathtaking views while enjoying Pacific Northwest cuisine.9skxoLFDf3YoCP9FSZx5uZv1

 Museum of Glass – This iconic museum in Tacoma looks like it’s going to take flight with its 90-foot stainless steel spaceship-shaped silver cone. Venture inside for the incredible exhibits on 20th and 21st century glass. Then feel the heat as the artisan glass blowers create their masterpieces right before your eyes in the Hot Shop. anderssonwise-id22-33-1500

 Archie McPhee – To say the word “novelty” doesn’t do this store justice. Located in Seattle, you’ll spend hours marveling at the kitsch that adorns every shelf. From the perfect costume or gift to the weirdest souvenir or toy, this shop is truly something beyond belief and something not to be missed.Archie-Mcphee

The Original Starbucks – The Pike Place Starbucks store, or better known as the Original Starbucks, first opened in 1971. Located in a historic district, due to design guidelines, the store still retains its original look and not the iconic Starbucks look found on nearly every corner throughout the U.S. So stop by for a cup or two and see where it all began.first-starbucks

Hat ‘n’ Boots – Stampede on over and check out the giant and colorful 44-ft. wide cowboy hat and 22-ft. high cowboy boots on display. This roadside landmark, built in 1954, was once located at the site of a western-themed gas station in Georgetown. With the station long gone, funds were rustled up to move these icons to their permanent home in Oxbow Park.-publish-worksimages-GRAWEBHatnBoots_LG

Top 5 Things To Do In Silicon Valley/San Francisco

5 Ways to Enjoy the Tech Capital of the Country


From tech conglomerates to mountainous views, Silicon Valley has earned its reputation as a hub of new age thinkers and powerful innovations. Companies such as Facebook, Apple, and Google all have a home in this historical landmark. If you ever have the pleasure of being in the Silicon Valley area just south of San Francisco, be sure to check out these high-profile attractions and see where the dot-com revolution got its start.


Once you’ve perused through the tech startups of Silicon Valley, reward yourself with a trip to downtown San Francisco. The Fisherman’s Wharf is one of the most historic locations in the city with its endless barrage of fresh seafood tents and boardwalk restaurants. As a massive tourist destination, Fisherman’s Wharf caters to your every need. It boasts a robust collection of local stores and souvenir shops. Hundreds of local businesses converge in this thriving section of the city. You’ll also find a plethora of live music venues, local theater performances, comedy clubs, boat tours and even wildlife sightings. Seals, gulls and sea lions are known to make an appearance along the dock’s edge. You can experience the best of San Francisco with one trip to the Fisherman’s Wharf.


While the public aren’t actually allowed in the research center, NASA does host a public visitor center that offers free self-guided tours that last about an hour. It gives you an insider’s look into what this massive facility is up to. With an annual budget over half a billion dollars, the Ames Research Center is leading the charge for innovations in supercomputing, robotics, and the future of air transportation.

The visitor center has a range of compelling exhibitions on display including an industrial sized theater with a 36-foot wide screen that shows footage of a drone’s mission to Mars and simulated flights through the Milky Way Galaxy.


Mt. Umunhum is a part of a stunning natural park that’s home to 18,000 acres of scenic countryside in the Santa Cruz Mountains. It’s filled with rigorous hiking trails, dozens of plant and animal species, and one of the best views in the state of California. At 3,486 feet in the air, you’ll see panoramic views of the entire park, the Santa Cruz Mountains, and part of the Bay Area. Mt. Umunhum has a complicated history to say the least. Throughout the 1950s and up until the late 70s, it was home to a massive radar station. Since then, the site has been horribly contaminated with hazardous materials including lead, asbestos and fossil fuel remains. Mid-peninsula Regional Open Space District has been working extensively since 2009 to restore the top of the mountain. The summit is expected to reopen to the public in the fall of 2016.


If you’re a fan of the company that brought us so many of the tools we use on a daily basis, stopping by the Apple Headquarters is essentially required. The store sells everything Apple related including history books, product accessories, T-shirts and other fanfare apparel. You can learn about the founding of one of the world’s largest tech corporations including how it grew from a garage in Silicon Valley to the leading distributor of digital consumer products. The building at One Infinity Loop is also an impressive display of modern architecture. Like many of its neighbors in the Valley, Apple Headquarters has massive ceilings, curving rooms, and endless glass walls. It’s amazing what billions of dollars in annual revenue will buy.


Ranked among the top universities in the country, Stanford exists in its own universe. Its massive campus is adjacent to downtown Palo Alto, an equally great location with dozens of tourist attractions. Just like the rest of Silicon Valley, Stanford is home to a highly academic community. You’ll find an enormous variety of bookstores and trendy cafes. Multiple free bus lines run from Palo Alto to the heart of the Stanford campus where you’ll see gorgeous green spaces, a booming cultural scene, and great views of the mountains. The Iris & B Gerald Cantor Center for Visual Arts is the university’s main art museum. Free to the public, this timeless attraction is known for its lavish collections of early 20th Century American Art and its burgeoning contemporary wing.

Closer to the downtown area, you’ll find an impressive slew of local restaurants, souvenir shops and designer stores. The Stanford Shopping Center is one of the largest open-air malls in the country with its upscale brand names and luxury products. Stop in at one of the area’s delicious local eateries for some authentic Italian food or a late night bar snack.

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Saint Patrick’s Day lore…

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Good luck is said to be bestowed on those who possess a four-leaf clover.

 

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Officially commemorates Saint Patrick, Ireland’s patron saint.

 

 


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Go with friends and enjoy the Saint Patrick’s Day parade and celebration.

 

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Remember to wear your green or you might feel a pinch.

 

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Embark on a journey to the seven places in the U.S. named after the shamrock.

 

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Enjoy a dish of traditional Irish American corned beef and cabbage.

 

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Never fall for the trickery of a leprechaun.

 

 

History lives in Washington DC…

 

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National Mall and Memorial Parks
The National Mall has been a proud symbol of our country for more than 200 years. Stretching from the United States Capitol to the Potomac River it encompasses many monuments and memorials including the Washington Monument, Lincoln Memorial, World War II Memorial, Thomas Jefferson Memorial, Vietnam Veterans Memorial, Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial, Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial and the DC War Memorial (WWI). This is the only the beginning, see all the national treasures DC has to offer.

2007_0509_arts_industriesThe Smithsonian Institution
The Smithsonian Institution is the world’s largest museum and research complex including 19 museums and galleries. Among the many are the National Air and Space Museum, American History Museum, Natural History Museum, American Indian Museum, African American History and Culture Museum, the Portrait Gallery, the Freer Gallery of Art and the Arts and Industries Building. Also included is the National Zoological Park, one of the world’s best zoos, and home to approximately 2,000 animals from nearly 400 species.  Continue reading History lives in Washington DC…

Soak up the sun and fun in Idaho…

Sun Valley
Ernest Hemingway first brought attention to the area in the 1930’s. Since then, tourists have flocked to the area to enjoy skiing, ice skating, golfing, fishing, hiking, cycling, tennis and horseback riding, in addition to the spectacular scenery. In Sun Valley, if the sun is out (and it’s out 80% o  f the year), then there’s always something fun and exciting just right outside.
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Museum of Idaho
Located on the edge of Idaho Falls’ historic downtown, among the museum’s exhibits are: “Race for Atomic Power” about the origins and advancements of nuclear energy; “Local Idaho History” with numerous cultural artifacts and exhibits; and the recreation of a tiny historical city known as “Eagle Rock”. Eagle Rock was the beginning of Idaho Falls and the recreation of the town, from circa 1890, is so remarkably detailed that you’ll feel like you’ve stepped back in time.

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Shoshone Indian Ice Caves
Geologists call these caves one of Earth’s natural wonders. The caves are actually a 1,000 foot long lava tube with an ice depth ranging between 8 and 30 feet in height. The ice is created from air currents that flow through the tubes. As you make your way along the trails, your guide will detail the geologic, volcanic and historical background of these large lava caves. Continue on your excursion to the museum containing local Indian artifacts, gems and minerals that are of cultural and historical significance to the region. No matter how hot it is outside, remember to dress warmly before entering the ice caves.

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Silverwood Theme Park & Boulder Beach Waterpark
Located in North Idaho, Silverwood is the Northwest’s largest theme park. Enjoy the more than 70 rides, slides, shows and attractions including four roller coasters, Boulder Beach Water Park and a steam engine train trip around the park. There are thrills for the brave from the Sky Diver and SpinCycle to the Flying Elephants and Carousel for the little ones. Be sure to look for Garfield and Odie who are always on hand as the official mascots of the park.

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Pocatello Zoo
What started small in 1932 with just a rhesus monkey and a raccoon, has grown into a 23 acre zoo with 30 exhibits and 77 animals. The zoo not only features native North American Wildlife, but it is also a sanctuary for all of its animals who were either orphaned, injured, imprinted, born in captivity, or who were unable to survive in the wild.  In addition to the world-class grizzly bear exhibit, visitors experience lynx, cougars, bobcats, bison, eagles, falcons, owls, foxes, coyotes, elk, pronghorn, deer, mountain goats, bighorn sheep, badgers, rabbits, porcupines, marmots, raccoon’s, fowl and barnyard favorites.

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Nightlife in Austin, TX…

TOP 5 NIGHTLIFE ACTIVITIES TO DO IN AUSTIN, TX


Spend a Night On the Town with the Best Late-Night Activities In Austin

When the sun sets in Austin, the party is just beginning. In addition to its vast natural beauty and rustic cowboy culture, Austin is a great city for staying up late. The streets are full of young professionals, students and friendly people looking for a good time. With dozens of high-end bars and hopping dance clubs, Austin has everything you need to party into the wee hours of the morning. Discover how it feels to strut through this posh city at night with our top five late-night activities.


The-Townsend Easily one of the most luxurious hotspots on our list, The Townsend is an ultra high-end cocktail bar serving rare and specialty-made drinks to a very thirsty public. You can expect the bar to be filled wall-to-wall with elegant partygoers on a Friday or Saturday night. Set in a colonial building from centuries past, the barroom is filled with crystal chandeliers, shelves of boozes, and plush lounge seating. Head mixologist Justin Elliot has a microcosm of loyal drinkers that go crazy for his unique recipes and inventive flavor combinations and the bar’s eclectic beer and wine selection. The Townsend has also become a prominent music and live event venue in recent years, hailing must-see songwriters and vocalists from the Central Texas area. Keep an eye out for the occasional burlesque show and other surprising late-night attractions. 


Midnight-CowboyA cozy retreat by reservation only, Midnight Cowboy offers a low-key atmosphere with private booths and astounding cocktails. Off the beaten path, this new age speakeasy can be hard to find. Visitors will have to plan ahead and make their reservations online. Guests can reserve booths for two hours as they soak up these intimate settings. The building used to be a brothel and that old-school red light district charm is still very much alive today. With a flip of a switch, guests can turn on a red light that alerts their bartender that it’s time for a refill. Not as rowdy as most downtown bars, Midnight Cowboy retains a more soothing code of conduct. It’s the perfect place for a long conversation and some quality one-on-one.


ElysiumKnown as the “haven from the everyday,” Elysium is the place for alternative nightlife in Austin. Every night of the week is a different theme, catered to a different crowd. You’ll find a mix of punk, goth, ghouls and grunge. The outrageous costumes and flamboyant dance moves are a must see. They have everything from drag contests and gothic balls to S & M style rock shows. The walls are usually adorned with hypnotizing video projections and outsider art. They feature a great mix of live performances and local bands, usually a bit on the darker side of things. With its diverse nightly crowds, all creeds and interests are welcome. Nights range from 18 to 21 plus. They also feature a weekly LGBT night. Bring a group of friends and feast your eyes on the hottest underground venue in Austin.


The-White-HorseFilled with Texas-vibes and down-to-earth charm, The White Horse is one of Austin’s best music and bar venues. Their humble stage is home to indie rock bands, blues guitarists, and the state’s best country singers. A hearty wooden dance floor hosts rambunctious crowds and the occasional honky tonk group dance lesson. As a 21 plus venue, The White Horse caters to more of an older crowd. The space has a few tables inside and out, two pool tables, and a magical taco truck parked in the back. Bar prices are fairly cheap with your favorite beers on tap. They even host a community flea market on Saturdays. Local artisans and collectors are encouraged to set up camp outside of the building to sell their goods to the public. You’ll always find a friendly community that likes to have a good time at The White Horse.


Half-StepYou can’t go wrong with an outdoor bar. Half Step is the place for casual cocktails with its open, ranch-style terrace and rustic wooden interior. Strings of colored lights and patches of gravel give this classic bar a homey feel. Serious cocktails are always flowing with their unusual combinations of liquors, spices and fresh fruit. They even have two house cocktails on tap. Their terrace also comes with a Ping-Pong table for some late night competitive action. Three nights a week they host a live band with three hours of drink specials to warm things up beforehand. With so much space, everyone has plenty of room to enjoy their drinks in peace. Perfect for dates and small groups of friends, Half Step will steal your heart every time. 

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Discover Orange County…

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Disneyland
The magic continues in 2015 as Disneyland celebrates its 60th anniversary. Ride the monorail, dare to enter the Haunted Mansion, sing-along to It’s a Small World, take a twirl in the Mad Tea Party teacups, bobsled through the Matterhorn and take flight with Peter Pan. Walk across to the California Adventure Park and go Soarin’ Over California, scream as you drop through the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror, get drenched on the Grizzly River Run, play your way through the Toy Story Midway Mania and take a spin on Mickey’s Fun Wheel. Be sure to check out the Downtown Disney District for more magical shopping, eating and entertainment. Remember, it all started with a mouse.

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Knott’s Berry Farm
In 1934 Mrs. Knott’s started serving her chicken dinner at the five-table restaurant in Buena Park. Since then, over 20,000,000 guests have eaten her world-famous chicken dinners. Once inside the amusement park, families enjoy the 40 rides including roller coasters, children’s rides, water rides and historical rides. Try the new Voyage to the Reef 4-D interactive thrill ride and make sure to see the Peanuts characters at the popular Camp Snoopy.

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Newport Beach
Sand, surf and sun combine to make Newport Beach a popular tourist destination. This picturesque seaside city offers numerous ways to relax and unwind. Enjoy a sunset cruise, go fishing, swimming, surfing, boating and all things water. Take a ride on the Ferris wheel at the Balboa Fun Zone. Hop onboard for a whale-watching excursion. Dine on some the freshest seafood around. Come in out of the sun and experience California art and history at the Orange County Museum. And the list goes on.

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Irvine Attractions
The Orange County Great Park offers rides in its giant, iconic orange balloon affording riders a 360 degree view of Irvine from 400 feet in the air. Spend the day at the Orange County Zoo and see exhibits of animals and plants in their natural habitats that are native to the southwestern U.S. Check out the extensive car collection at the Marconi Automotive Museum and authentic aircraft at the Lyon Air Museum. Spend a day enjoying the sun or surf or go for a horseback ride. Irvine has it all for the entire family.

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Richard Nixon Presidential Library and Museum
This impressive facility in Yorba Linda encompasses 22 Presidential Museum galleries, the President’s restored 1910 birthplace, the impressive First Lady’s Garden, a replica of the White House East Room and the flower-ringed memorial sites of President and Mrs. Nixon. Explore history firsthand as you can climb aboard the Marine One helicopter, travel to more than 80 countries with the Nixon’s through interactive and movie presentations, and so much more on the history-making life of our 37th President.

5 Places to visit while staying in Maryland…

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Part 7 of our top 10 places to visit while relocating with SuiteAmerica – our next pit stop is !

Relocating to Maryland? Or do you already live there and are looking for some sites to see? We’ve put together a list of 5 places that are must see attractions for current or future residents.

B&O Railroad Museum
History was born in Baltimore when the first 12 miles of railroad track in the U.S. were laid. This National Historic Landmark brings to life what it was like to ride the rails with impressive displays of historic locomotives and rail cars.
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For more information call 410.752.2490 or check out their website at http://www.borail.org/

Clara Barton National Historic Site Museum
This National Historic Site in Glen Echo was home to the founder of the American Red Cross. Clara Barton selflessly dedicated her life to helping others in need. Her house served as the headquarters and warehouse for the American Red Cross for many years. To this day it continues to fly its familiar Red Cross flag.
CB_01red_cross_wagon19140225460_2501e168b2_bFor more information call 310.320.1410 or check out their website at http://www.nps.gov/clba/index.htm

Fort McHenry National Monument and Historic Shrine
Francis Scott Key was inspired to write “The Star Spangled Banner” following a British bombardment on the fort. You can practically hear the words of our National Anthem as you stroll the grounds of this impressive star-shaped fort.
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For more information call 410.962.4290 or check out their website at http://www.nps.gov/fomc/index.htm

Fire Museum of Maryland
This fire museum is the third largest of its kind in the world. On exhibit are more than forty antique fire apparatus, memorabilia, fire-fighting equipment, models and photographs. You’ll be impressed with the dedication and courage of fire fighters throughout history.
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For more information call 410.321.7500 or check out their website at http://www.firemuseummd.org/

Oriole Park at Camden Yards
Home to the Baltimore Orioles major league baseball team, this ballpark, nestled in downtown Baltimore is known as “The Ballpark That Forever Changed Baseball”.  Its unique blending of early 20th century ballparks with the urban setting of downtown Baltimore inspired a generation of ballpark construction.
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For more information call 410.685.9800 or check out their website at http://baltimore.orioles.mlb.com/bal/ballpark/

Do you know of any other places to visit in Maryland that you think should be added to the list? We’d love to hear from you!