Michael S Novilla enjoys the Eat Rio Food Tour with Tom Le Mesurier

Michael S Novilla enjoys the Eat Rio Food Tour with Tom Le Mesurier

Michael S. Novilla enjoys the Eat Rio Food Tour with Tom Le Mesurier.

On Tuesday August 8, 2017, at around 9:15 am, I’m freshly awoken with 1st coffee in hand. The phone rings, and I’m being pressed to make a quick decision on the fly, all based upon the compelling advice of persuasive local Rio tour guide Lauren Quinn. On the phone, she’s telling me I gotta take Tom’s Foodie Tour while here in Rio. And it’s offered today at 10 am. So I scrambled to get ready, then Ubered to the meeting spot, running uncharacteristically about 20 minutes late. Typically I dig into reviews galore before spending my hard earned $$, but this time I just took, what will prove to be, excellent advice, and just did it.

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Rio Street Art Tour with Nina

Rio Street Art Tour with Nina

Rio Street Art Tour with Nina, one of our newer Entrepreneur Social Club members!

I did something unusual today. On a sunny August 14, 2017, here in Rio de Janeiro. During my world travels and adventuring, the exploring of street art murals and graffiti, down the alleys and around the city streets, I typically do this alone. Solo. Like I did in Athens and in Medellin. So I can walk and explore at my own pace. Rare quiet time. Time to think, to contemplate and enjoy. Well, I decided to take the smart advice of my new pal Tom Le Mesurier, the founder of Eat Rio, whose tour I enjoyed just a few days ago. Yummy! So when in Rio de Janeiro, spend the afternoon with Tom. He said that if I enjoyed street art, which I MOST certainly do, then I MUST take a tour with Nina. Thanks Tom for your excellent advice!!

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Lele Iturrioz Author of Seasons Within book covers and reviews

YA Author Lele Iturrioz Delights Readers’ Favorite

Fantasy YA Author Lele Iturrioz Delights Readers’ Favorite, winning a 5-Star Review and their Readers’ Favorite Honorary Book Award!

I’m Lele and I’m the author of the YA fantasy series, Seasons Within.” Lele and I “met” through a mutual friend, blossoming Entrepreneur Alejandra Ramirez, a fellow, talented, Mexican. They grew up together, and Ale mentioned to me that maybe I should meet her writer friend Lele. I’m always happy to help, it’s exactly why I created the Entrepreneur Social Club, aka ESC, back in 2009. To help, mentor, learn from and make new, amazing friendships. So I connected with Lele, and offered some free advice. Lele and I did some video chatting, and I walked her through several website and social media improvements, and such. She was great, taking notes, and making many improvements immediately. She’s a busy young lady, seemingly writing all the time! It took me several months, but finally got with Lele long enough for an (quick) interview.

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Things Hotels Just Gotta Get Right by the Entrepreneur Social Club

Things Hotels Gotta Get Right

No means No! Not ‘Maybe’, nor ‘Sometimes’. It means NO!! Please. PLEASE! This hotel has gotta get it right. Please!! Please hotel peoples, listen here to things hotels gotta get right. That little sign you hang on your door must be very clear. I love the RED for “leave me the F alone!” and GREEN for “yes please come and tidy up my messes.”  Excellent hotels get this concept, like those in Japan and the Kimpton chain, for example.  Others the maids may be banging on your door just to piss you off. Because we know they are way overpaid (sarcasm alert!) for that (mostly) thankless and difficult job. See I owned, before the great crash, 100 apartments, and let me tell you, I’ve done PLENTY of cleaning. Down to the bone clean. So here’s a big

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Octopus bacon at the Entrepreneur Social Club at NOVA 535 in DTSP St. Pete Florida

Octopus Bacon and Boats you Just Cannot Flip

Octopus Bacon and Boats you Just Cannot Flip

Tonight is a spectacularly gorgeous “winter” evening, another near perfect Thursday here in sunny St. Pete, Florida. I’m gearing up for our weekly Entrepreneur Social Club, HQed at my historic wedding and event venue NOVA 535, which happens to be turning 9 years old today! Happy Birthday to Team NOVA!! So much love, passion, tears, hard work, sweat and real $$ equity went into building NOVA 535 out of the ‘ashes’ of a doggie day care and out of about 80 years of bad design decisions. I purchased 535 in the fall of 2005 and we opened February 8, 2009. Wow how time flies! And how tonight we discover and enjoy Octopus Bacon and Boats you Just Cannot Flip!

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Athens Surprising Street Art Scene with Entrepreneur Social Club world traveler

Athen’s Surprising Street Art Scene

Athen’s Surprising Street Art Scene.

So I arrived late into Athens Saturday night, about 11pm, and “Tubered” to my AirBnB apartment. “Tubered” meaning using the Uber app but riding in a taxi. See many cities around the globe caved into the taxi union’s pressure and don’t allow Ubering they only allow “Tubering” with taxi (new word =Tubering). It DOES make the shitty taxi service better, less chance to sit around waiting, getting “lost” and being ripped off. (Props to all our fellow Entrepreneurs for making traveling in the 21st Century SO MUCH EASIER!! AirBnB, Uber, Expedia, Google Flights, etc. THANK YOU ALL SO MUCH!!) Anyhoo, so after skipping dinner, and finally getting an excellent night’s sleep (check out my previous blog’s as to why), I awoke to a spectacularly gorgeous 1st day in Athens. Time to go out sightseeing! I was having some stomach issues, likely from

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beautiful vilnius

Lovely Vilnius Strange Little Uzupis

Lovely Vilnius Strange Little Uzupis.

Vilnius is the capital of Lithuania, and was chosen as my post Riga next stop on my Summer 2016 Entrepreneur Social Club travel adventures. I didn’t know exactly what to expect, which, when you plan weddings and complex events for a living (NOVA 535 Unique Event Space) it’s nice to just let things happen as they happen. Minimal planning involved. So I took the 3.5 hour bus ride from Riga, easy peasy, and landed here in lovely Vilnius, on a beautifully sunny day. And Sunny night as this part of the world seems to enjoy looooooong days. Let’s explore!

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Just the Fax Ma'am Entrepreneur Social Club in Vilnius Lithuania

Just the Fax Ma’am

Just the Fax Ma’am. Fax? Don’t you mean Facts? Er, nope. Read on… Spending a day experiencing the Belarus Consul (and their delightful 1950’s style of customer service, brought to you by Stalin.Inc) to a modern, friendly, tech savvy Latvian Entrepreneur named Dovainis Sinkevičius, owner of a new, really cute cafe, Localt. End to end of the spectrum here ladies and gents. See while traveling through the delightful Latvia and Lithuania, I decided to pop over to neighbor Belarus, into the capital Minsk….but not before a few days here in lovely Vilnius!

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decisions and designs

Design and Decisions. Good Bad Ugly Beautiful.

Design and Decisions. Good Bad Ugly Beautiful.

What goes into decision making? Does it feel good or bad? Is it beautiful or ugly? Would you do it again? Ultimately, for me, it’s would I do it again? Yes or No. It’s a binary answer to a complex set of questions. Would I go back to a restaurant? Take someone out for date #2? Watch a film again? Buy a 2nd bottle of that same wine? Take a 2nd or last bite??

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entrepreneur social club lietains riga retains kool

Lietains Riga Retains it’s Vess

Lietains Riga Retains it’s Vess.

Day two in Riga, the capital of Latvia, sandwiched between Lithuania to the south and Estonia to the north. As recently as 1991, all formerly controlled by Russia. Lietains, in Latvian, is rainy, and Vess means cool. Today Sunday July 3, 2016 it rained (lija) all day, yet the charm and vess of Riga, Latvia never diminished! Just like while under Russian authority, the sparkle of Riga remained strong, even when soaking wet. Better, brighter and more beautiful days are here for this gem of a city.  So after a hearty (and included) breakfast in the swanky cellar of this renovated, historic structure, the Royal Square Hotel, I borrowed an umbrella and headed off for my Lietains Riga adventure!

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