A Traveler's Guide to Moscow

|[pic]                           |[pic]                           |
|"There are only two reasons to  |"Don't be shocked by the prices.|
|come here, "says one Western    |In many places, the whole point |
|businessman, "to have a fun and |is to spend as much money as    |
|get rich."                      |possible to show what a big shot|
|                                |you are."                       |
|t may come as a|know what.     |Night Life    |Casino Royale   |
|surprise to    |Having never   |Moscow's night|The city's most |
|many to learn  |previously     |life is of    |elegant casino  |
|that Moscow is |visited a      |epic          |and a favorite  |
|one of the     |post-communist |proportions,  |among serious   |
|world's great  |city,          |and people    |players         |
|cities. It     |particularly   |don't really  |                |
|certainly did  |one that had   |start rocking |                |
|to me. I think |the reputation |until midnight|                |
|that, like many|for rampant    |and seldom    |                |
|people, I      |crime and      |stop before   |                |
|envisioned a   |shoddy         |sunup.        |                |
|city that was a|Stalinist      |One thing to  |                |
|cross between  |architecture   |bear in mind: |                |
|Beirut and ... |enjoyed by     |Many          |                |
|well, I don't  |Moscow.        |nightclubs,   |                |
|               |               |casinos and   |                |
|               |               |bars cater    |                |
|               |               |mainly to the |                |
|               |               |Russian mafia.|                |
|               |               |So don't go   |                |
|               |               |unless you're |                |
|               |               |with someone  |                |
|               |               |who's known   |                |
|               |               |there; then   |                |
|               |               |everything    |                |
|               |               |will be fine. |                |
|Hotels         |Hotel Baltschug|Making The    |-Getting        |
|The following  |Kempinski      |Most Of Moscow|Oriented: Moscow|
|hotels are mix |Few urban      |              |is one of the   |
|of Moscow's    |hotels anywhere|-Arriving: If |most confusion  |
|best, from     |can top the    |possible,     |cities in the   |
|inexpensive to |view. Five-star|arrange to    |world to        |
|luxury. All    |European       |have someone  |navigate.       |
|provide        |comfort and    |meet you with |-Taxis: Moscow's|
|Western-style  |service. Rooms:|a car when you|taxi system is a|
|accommodations |$384-420.      |land at       |free-for-all,   |
|and amenities. |               |Sheremetivo   |and             |
|               |               |Airport. Upon |out-of-towners  |
|               |               |arrival you   |will be taken   |
|               |               |will be handed|shocking        |
|               |               |a customs     |advantage of if |
|               |               |form. Do not  |they don't know |
|               |               |lose this:    |the score. Fares|
|               |               |you'll be     |are agreed upon |
|               |               |expected to   |before you get  |
|               |               |turn it in    |in. The best bet|
|               |               |along with a  |is to hire a car|
|               |               |new one when  |and driver for  |
|               |               |you depart.   |your stay.      |
|               |               |-Visas: The   |-Money: Many    |
|               |               |Russians      |places take     |
|               |               |remain very   |rubles instead  |
|               |               |strict about  |of hard         |
|               |               |visas. Be sure|currency, but   |
|               |               |that all your |the $ is quickly|
|               |               |dates coincide|becoming        |
|               |               |with those on |Russia's        |
|               |               |your visa.    |unofficial      |
|               |               |              |currency. So    |
|               |               |              |it's good to    |
|               |               |              |carry some      |
|               |               |              |greenbacks.     |
|Restaurants    |Golden Ostap   |              |                |
|Since the      |A traditional  |              |                |
|Soviet Union   |Georgian       |              |                |
|crumbled,      |restaurant that|              |                |
|Moscow has seen|also offers a  |              |                |
|an explosion of|little         |              |                |
|restaurants    |blackjack and  |              |                |
|purveying      |roulette.      |              |                |
|international  |McDonald's     |              |                |
|cuisine. Most  |All location of|              |                |
|that cater to  |this American  |              |                |
|Western        |icon are       |              |                |
|visitors,      |unbelievably   |              |                |
|generally the  |popular.       |              |                |
|more expensive |               |              |                |
|ones, are      |               |              |                |
|relatively safe|               |              |                |
|and clean,     |               |              |                |
|though quality |               |              |                |
|varies.        |               |              |                |