Mike Miller, a long-time resident of Alaska,...

Times Travel Editor

Mike Miller, a long-time resident of Alaska, publishes a newsletter that tells all about his favorite state. Six issues a year for $20. The latest (28 pages devoted to fishing) is available for $5 for the single copy and includes 30 road maps pinpointing Miller's favorite fishing holes. Future copies of Miller's newsletter will tell about offbeat adventures in Alaska, new resorts/excursions and will contain a listing of discounted tours/accommodations. Mike Miller's Alaska Travel Newsletter: Box 1494, Juneau, Alaska 99802.

Ventura Hideaway

Drove up to Ventura to see a new B&B; called La Mer and it gets our own five stars. Five rooms representing five European countries in a charming 1909 Cape Cod-style Victorian. On a hillside with a view of the ocean. And real European atmosphere. Gisela Baida is a native of Siegerland, Germany. Her mother shipped over goose-down comforters, a houseful of antiques. Husband Mike created a Bavarian-style breakfast room where a buffet is served each morning: European cheeses, apple strudel, coffeecake, croissants, German twist bread. And in case someone doesn't feel like driving, Gisela and Mike will send a chauffeur-driven antique limousine to deliver the guest to Ventura. Room rates: $55/$80 plus corporate discounts. La Mer Bed & Breakfast: 411 Poli St., Ventura 93001, telephone (805) 643-3600. (Note: All but one room have their own private entrances.)

Travel Connection

A new travel service is being offered free to travelers making hotel/motel reservations in California. No charge for booking rooms. All price categories. The same people will make reservations in Reno/Las Vegas as well. Call The California Travel Connection toll-free at (800) 443-0123. Hours: 8 a.m.-8 p.m., seven days a week.

Week's Best Buy

Nothing is cheap anymore, but $55 a night for a room in a top-rate hotel is a deal. Particularly in the nation's capital. That's the price (single or double) this summer at the Radisson Henley Park Hotel, 926 Massachusetts Ave., Washington, D.C. 20001 (includes a continental breakfast in the hotel's Coeur de Lion restaurant). Suites are 20 bucks extra. The Henley is just down the block from the White House. Within walking distance of the Smithsonian, the Washington Monument, Union Station, the city's convention center. And Marley's lounge is the perfect spot to quaff a cooler after doing the capital's sites.

Freighter News

A note from George Henck of Freighter World Cruises tells us that Columbus Line Freighters will do trips between Long Beach and Australia/New Zealand every two weeks beginning this October. Henck says the ships are "beautiful." Sent along snapshots of swimming pools, Jacuzzis. (Note: Every other cruise will call at Honolulu.) Duration: 45-50 days. Rates are pegged at $4,700 per person in twin-bedded cabins (singles, $5,600). Figures out to a trifle over $100 a day. Contact your travel agent or Henck c/o Freighter World Cruises, 180 S. Lake Ave., Suite 335, Pasadena 91101, telephone (818) 449-3106.

Classic Choo Choo

Classic Rail Travel is sponsoring a trip by private cars from Los Angeles to San Francisco and Portland Sept. 18. An all-bedroom Pullman, a classic diner-lounge, a dome-style observation car and a Dixieland band. Travel all the way to Portland or drop off in Oakland, $199/$650. Other details from Classic Rail Travel, P.O. Box 2541, Orange, Calif. 92669, or telephone (714) 532-1380.

Paris on the Cheap

A new canal excursion boat trip in Paris takes in the village of La Villette along the Canal de l'Our, then moves on to the town of Meaux on the Canal St. Martin. Passes through a lock 30 feet high. Five trips daily, 9:15 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays. Check in at the Jean-Jaures Metro stop. Price: $3.50. Makes it one of Paris' best buys.

Reader Recommendations

Oregon--H. J. Evans, Fullerton: "A charming bed and breakfast called Oceanhouse, 4920 N.W. Woody Way, Newport, Ore. 97365. Prices $40/$60."

Oregon--Jeanne W. Evers, Lakewood: "Discovered a charming restaurant, Hamilton House, 344 N.E. Terry Lane, Grants Pass, Ore. Telephone 479-3938."

Scotland--Frank and Carolyn Esohen, San Diego: "In Scotland we chanced upon an excellent B&B;, Hazelhurst, Aboyne, Aberdeenshire AB3 SHY, Scotland. Rates $10 to $13 per person. The breakfasts were great and the owner will provide box lunches, supper or dinner if asked."

England--Myrdelle Teaford, Van Nuys: "The best find in England--Brunel's Tunnel House in Saltford BS18 3BQ, England. Five minutes from Bath and 10 minutes from Bristol. A beautifully appointed double room with bath is 33 including breakfast. Optional four-course gourmet dinner is 7 per person. Call 022-173-873."

England--Peter Corsi, Hemet: Enjoyed Massetts Lodge, Massetts Road, Horley, Surrey, England. "Excellent accommodation and English breakfast for $30 a night including pickup to and from Gatwick Airport, VAT and parking."

England--Claire Lira, Pacific Palisades: "A clean and charming B&B; in James Herriot's hometown, Thirsk, North Yorkshire, operated by Liz and Barry Ogleby, St. James House, 36 St. James Green. Delicious breakfast, a totally delightful and reasonable experience."

England--Theodore L. Humes, Phoenix, Ariz.: "Discovered the Lensfield Hotel, 53 Lensfield Road, CB2 1EN, Cambridge, England. A fine establishment. Operated by the Paschalis family of Greek origin who take a personal interest in each guest."

England--Dr. and Mrs. Boyd A. Nies, Redlands: "Enjoyed the Oak House, Altarnun, Launceston, Cornwall PL15 7SJ, England. Telephone 04-6686. Rate for three people with breakfast and a superb dinner was 42."

England/Scotland--Lora Bender, Riverside: Recommends four B&Bs; in England/Scotland: on the Isle of Wight, Old Rectory, Calbourne PO30 4JE, and the Retreat, Stoke Canon, in Devon near Exeter (both in England); in Scotland, Beachaway House, 4-8 Murray Park, St. Andrews, Fife KY16 9AW, and Arden House, Moffat, Dumfriesshire DG10 9HG. In the $9/$13 per-person range.

England--Louise Houser, Camarillo: Praises a B&B;, Prior House, 3 Marlborough Lane, Upper Bristol Road, Bath BA1 2NO, England.

England--LuNeal Hailey, Port Hueneme: Recommends a B&B; at 26 Hamble Drive, Abingdon, Oxon OX14 3TE, England. "Good accommodations, with car, driver, $50 a day."

France--Steve Toy, Westchester, Ohio: "A Chinese restaurant in Paris. For an amazing low price of only 28 francs (about $3) one is served an appetizer, a main dish with rice, a dessert and a drink (beer, wine or bottled water) and the service is included. Visited the restaurant several times. Food and service were always excellent. Address: Dien Hung, 98 Rue de la Reunion, 75020 Paris."

France--Samuel J. D'Angelo, Burbank: Enjoyed Residence Les Gobelins, 9 Rue Des Gobelins, 75013 Paris. "Rooms were adequate, clean, private baths, televisions. About $28/$34 a day."

France--Herbert Landesman, West Covina: "In Cannes, the Hotel Mimont, 39 Rue de Mimont, and in Colmar, the Hotel Turenne, 10 Route de Bale. A room with bath, breakfast included for three was under $30. Also recommend Cafe de Paris, 63 Rue General De Gaulle. A great meal for three, $30, including wine and service."

Switzerland--Helen von Muller, Palos Verdes Estates: Praise for the Royal St. Georges Hotel, 3800 Interlaken, Switzerland. "A fine old hotel with elegant Victorian decor and all modern conveniences. Price, which also included breakfast and dinner, was $440 per week."

Readers: Your recommendations should contain the addresses of hotels, inns, restaurants, as well as prices whenever possible. (Please print or type.)

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