The Champagne Backpacker: Michael's Round the World Trip 2005-2007-- The Adventure of a Lifetime travel blog

La Cienaga Hosteria

Grounds Of La Cienaga

La Cienaga's Living Room

Great Welcome To Nevado Ecuador Rose Farm

Touring The Greenhouses

Sorting Roses

Rose Preparation Warehouse

Pruning And Preparing Roses For Shipment

Beautiful Red Roses--I Believe These Are The Forever Young Variety

David, A Buyer For A UK Retailer, Watches Rose Preparation

Long Stem Roses

Sorting And Packing Roses

Buyers David And Martin Discuss Business With John While Jeff Looks On

Box For Long Stem Roses

Packing Roses

CBS News Crew Films For A Mothers Day Special

Greenhouses With Gutters To Collect Rain Water

Walking Through A Greenhouse

Filming John Nevado, President Of Nevado Ecuador

John Walks With One Of His Supervisors

John And Jeff, Classmates From The Johns Hopkins School Of Advance International...

Nevado Ecuador Roses

Mount Cotopaxi

Oderay, Mia And John

The Newly Engaged Couple--Mia And John

Cheers From The Champagne Backpacker And Jeff


Jeff and I visited La Cienaga Hosteria, about three hours south of Quito. It's a well-known destination near Mount Cotapaxi, known for its gardens and old world feel. We were two of four guests. In the morning, we were picked up by John Nevado, a friend of Jeff's from their year in Bologna, Italy, while studying for a masters degree from the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS). John is president of Nevado Ecuador, a high-end rose farm. We visited his rose farm along with a couple of retail buyers from England and Holland, David and Martin. Apparently, Ecuador is considered the best place in the world to grow roses. Based on what I saw, I don't doubt it. The roses grown on John's farm were larger and more beautiful than I have ever seen anywhere before in my life--gorgeous beyond description.

Later in the afternoon, a CBS News producer and cameraman, Jack Renaud and Scott Shelley, showed up to do a Mothers Day (May 13 in the USA) feature on roses. The feature is scheduled to be broadcast during the CBS Early Show on the Thursday or Friday before Mothers Day. Jack and Scott said they left Phil Keoghan, the host of the television show "The Amazing Race" in Quito (Scott is one of the cameramen for The Amazing Race). Alas, there went Jeff and my best chance of becoming contestants on "The Amazing Race" (Our hook: Politically opposite unemployed attorneys). Interestingly Jack and Scott had just finished a piece on the Merrie Monarch Festival from my home state, Hawaii. The Merrie Monarch Festival is the Academy Awards of hula, a traditional Hawaiian dance. They profiled Halau I Ka Wekiu, which eventually won the overall title at the Merrie Monarch festival.

And if CBS News wasn't enough, National Geographic planned to visit the following day.

In the evening, we met up in Quito with John, his fiance Mia, and their friend Oderay for champagne and hors d'oeuvres (A special muchos gracias to John for hosting us at his rose farm and in Quito).

* * *

MONDAY, MAY 14, 2007. LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA, USA.

Here's a link to a CBS News broadcast last night that was filmed in part at Nevado Ecuador's rose farm during our visit on April 20th. Jeff's friend, John Nevado, was interviewed in this segment.



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