Brunch with the girlies at Rafo’s


One day I woke up and looked at facebook and one of my friends was talking about how she was on her way to brunch. Hmm and you know this inspired a craving for American style brunch. So I searched for a place that had a minimum of pancakes and mimosas and was in the miraflores/barranco/san isidro area to no avail. But hmm of course the planner in me trotted over to my favorite local menu spot Rafo’s (I mean it’s on my corner and we go there at least twice a week). I told Rafo my idea of having an American brunch and he was game! So of course this means I had to plan a menu lol. And Matthew says to me “You like entertaining”, umm hello.

The menu I requested was:


  • Fruit Salad
  • Croissants, Toast, Danishes

Entree (Choose One)

  • Hash-browns, Eggs, and Toast
  • Pancakes and bacon
  • French Toast and Bacon


  • Piccarones


Coffee, Tea, Orange Juice for mimosas

I was told that they were not equipped for piccarones so that was nixed from the start. But I felt we needed some type of Peruvian item, and Rafo offered to make a Peruvian sausage sandwich (I can’t remember the name of it) instead. He said we can bring the champagne for the mimosas and it was 25 soles a person. Which was great. I sent out the Facebook event to told the ladies to please invite friends.

I ended up with about 10 RSVPs by the day of.  The day of the event I arrived at Rafos and he showed me the table – he had set it up so that it was absolutely lovely and there were beautiful roses on the table as well. The restaurant also doubles as an antique store inside part of an old mansion adds to the character that it already has. Plus the entire staff is pretty great too.

So brunch was absolutely awesome, the food was great, the ladies were great, and I made two new friends.

Quick advice on where to stay in Lima, Peru (when visiting someone in Miraflores or Barranco)

Hello everyone! My mother and father -in-law are coming to town in November to visit us and I recently composed an email to them about places to stay that are near us in the Miraflores and Barranco districts of Lima. Please keep in mind that the hotel price ranges are from around $59 – $125 maybe more – so this is not for people who are ok with staying in a hostel or something 3 star or less. Also keep in mind that I have never stayed at these hotels but have received the suggestions from expat friends and the lovely expat community on facebook “Expatriats in Peru”!/groups/expatriatesinperu/

Hotels In Barranco (our neighborhood) that I received recommendations of:

  • Hotel Barranco (This is not open now =(  maybe in the future)
  • Second Home Peru : We stopped by second home peru and it was very interesting looking – Tons of great art and a backyard on the ocean.  That would have to be booked soon. The only problem is that there would be a room change involved. Because it is mostly booked. I believe it was $125 a night
  • 3B  This is a bed and breakfast

Hotels In Miraflores that I received recommendations for (all are good locations):

Some things to consider:

  • Second Home Peru/ 3B these are botique hotels not luxury .. i think they are very nice its your preference I think Second Home is beautiful 3B seems very modern and trendy.  There are tons of restaurants close to Second Home Peru.
  • Miraflores:

Trip Advisor info (photos included)

    • Tons of tourist shops
    • Tons of shopping
    • Very modern – you will feel like you are in an American city
    • It is a touristy place – not in a bad way
    • Parque Kennedy is there
      •  which is a place where a lot of people walk around
      • there are often markets set up
      • there are popcorn, dessert, and sandwich vendors in the park
      • occasionally very randomly there will be live music, people dancing, or a comedy show
    • It has a more energetic feeling to it
    • Depending on the hotel you will be anywhere from 5 minutes away from us to 10 minutes by cab
    • There is a lot to do there with just the two of you .. if you’d like some “couple time”
    • There are a lot of tourist and 5 star restaurants
  • Barranco

Read Trip Advisor info (photos included):

    • It’s where we live (so of course we love it)
    • There are great restaurants here
    • It is a walking town – everything is close by
    • There is more graffiti here but it doesn’t bother me
    • There are a lot of art galleries
    • There are some theatrical clown performances, a few muscians here and there
    • Its “Bohemian”
    • There is a main square with a fountain where you can relax and also a very beautiful park that is less busy than Parque Kennedy

I think that sums it up and gives you everything you need to make a decision =)!!!!

An Update on Life

People ask us all the time “Why Peru” apparently I haven’t written about that either. Honestly, going abroad is something we decided on a whim and we went with. After that we decided we wanted to live abroad for a year or two, and  Matthew wanted to go to South America so that he could become fluent in Spanish.  We started talking with the TEFL Institute about places where we could take a TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) Certificate and we chose Peru momentarily – but ended up taking a class online. We continued to search the world for a home via the internet and talking to friends but Peru just stuck. I discovered that they don’t speak as fast as they do in other Spanish speaking countries (this will be easier to learn Spanish); that Peru has a wonderful combination of Incan, Spaniard, and African cultures; and that Peru has some of the best food in the world (you know I’m a foodie). Even better we had a wonderful array of coincidental friends and connections to Peru- an old friend of mine from college Eduardo, is from Peru; a new friend of mine and caterer of my last event Dennis, is from Peru; my brother-in-law has a friend that just finished working at the US Embassy in Peru; my cousin’s  fiance’s father Tim, is married to a Peruvian and just moved from Peru; PBS started a mini-series “Blacks in Latin America” which featured Peru; and my grandmother and my mom’s first trip abroad together was to Peru. So basically all arrows pointed to PERU and that is why we are here.

Thus far life in Lima is far better than we would have ever imagined. Here are a few pretty amazing things:

  • To start it off we lucked out on a great swanky apartment that has hot water, a washer and dryer, cable TV, and more … LOL OK its a lot more than that – but being comfortable in your habitation has a lot to do with whether or not you like where you are or not.
  • My neighborhood Barranco, is a walking town – I can walk anywhere I need to go and pretty much get everything I need right here.
  • I’ve been able to go to some pretty great events right here in the city I live in – Barranco Blues Festival, Mistura, and Expat events.
  • Lima has tons of different districts to visit, I would compare Lima to a state and its districts to cities (although Lima is technically a city). There are also many museums to visit and learn about the Peruvian culture.
  • I’ve been able to travel to other near by cities such as Ica, Huacachina, Chincha, and Cerro Azul.
  • I’ve learned how to get around on the combis (bus) and choose the right taxi (old man & nice car). I’m definitely walking more this is an improvement.
  • I’m taking a dance class in Spanish.
  • I’m learning Spanish
  • Teaching adults has been an amazing learning experience – not just learning that I have more patience than I ever imagined. But I am also meeting amazingly brilliant people that I am learning from.
  • Matthew and I have not regretted a single day since we arrived here!
  • And last but of course not least I’ve made great friends. This took a while, at first we thought we need to strategies – “hey do you want to trade English for Spanish” lol no that didn’t work. But all of a sudden it all fell into place –  either through classes friends that were once just students, on facebook, the expat community, other teachers, or someone you meet just by sitting next to them at a bar or walking down the street.   Everyone has been extremely nice and we’ve made “fast friends”. I’ve been to expat events, had drinks with friends, breakfast with the girls, a friends amazingly fun birthday party (why do grown @ss people party till 5am like they’re 21 here lol) (click for photos), we’ve even been a country club here – The Regatas, my friend’s husbands “reunion” (get together- food and drinks) at her in-laws, went on a road trip to a friends summer home in Cerro Azul (click for photos), and even made American style breakfast with our Peruvian family.
Sonia and I

Carlos Edith's son-in-law, Matthew, me, and Edith
Tati, Andrew, Maya (the little one), and me
Mi amiga Carol and me
Ursula "Uhci", me, and Uchi's friends Flavia and Fab
Matthew, Miguel and friends
Mel and I
Matthew, Victor and friends

So what’s next? Matthew and I can’t believe we’ve almost been married for one year. We have been truly blessed to have been able to embark on this amazing journey together. We’d love to visit another South American country for our anniversary.

Please leave a comment on why you voted for a particular destination.