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Meet the EuroCheapo Team

Who is EuroCheapo?


So, who are we and why should you take our advice? Since our first hotel trip in January 2001 (yikes, THAT was a disaster!), the EuroCheapo staff has expanded to include writers, editors and other types from around the globe. And watch out -- We're only getting started!

 New York Office

Tom Meyers

Founder, Editor-in-Chief
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Tom started EuroCheapo in the Fall of 2000 and blasted off for Europe in January 2001. Within months, he had seen hundreds of hotel rooms and figured out the French, Italian and Spanish ways to say "sound-proofed windows." Tom lived in Berlin for most of 2001 and launched EuroCheapo from his office there. He returned to New York in 2002, set up office, and has led the EuroCheapo team from the Big Apple ever since. Updating the site and staying on top of the listings isn't easy, however, and he and the staff make frequent trips to Europe. A native of Bellevue, Ohio, Tom moved to New York in 1993 to attend Columbia University where he majored in French and lived for as long as he could in Paris. Tom is also a co-host of the New York City history podcast, The Bowery Boys. Journalists: Click for media inquiries.

Tom Meyers

Pete Meyers

Vice President, Marketing and Business Development
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An Ohio native, Pete was bred on family road trips, "Weird Al" Yankovic and skateboarding. He first traveled to Europe as a teenager while backpacking with his brothers and sister in France, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom. This experience taught him many life lessons, including that it is possible to keep milk cold in a bidet. Upon graduating from the University of Michigan, Pete pursued a career in digital marketing and advertising, which took him from his beloved Ann Arbor to New York and eventually London, where he was a Senior Partner for OgilvyOne's European media group. After plenty of conversations with his brother Tom about EuroCheapo, Pete joined the company in the summer of 2006. Pete now lives in Brooklyn with his wife, Meredith.

Pete Meyers

Meredith Franco Meyers

Managing Editor and Brussels Reviewer
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Meredith grew up in suburban Detroit listening to the motown sounds of Diana Ross and the Supremes. In high school, inexplicably, a Lord of the Dance show made her want to take the next plane overseas. (But, that's another story entirely and would require acrobatics.) After graduating from the University of Michigan, she earned an MFA in fiction writing at The New School in New York City. Her feature stories and articles have appeared in Ladies' Home Journal, Self, InStyle Specials, Modern Bride (regional editions), Bridal Guide, Time Out New York, Fitness and more. Additionally, she is on the writing faculty of Gotham Writers Workshops. An ideal night in Paris—her favorite EC city—would include a cabaret show Aux Trois Mailletz, a crépe from the Horse Man Team at La Cour aux Crépes (Rue Galande) and a brief browse-through at Shakespeare's. She joined EuroCheapo in summer 2007 and always looks forward to traveling with her husband (see "Peter" above) and brother-in-law (see "Tom").

Meredith Franco Meyers

Kari Hoerchler

Staff Writer and Budapest Reviewer
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Ever wondered where the happening night club in Geneva is? In November? Or how to avoid the lines at the entrance of La Segrada Familia in Barcelona in July? Or where to find the perfect little joint in Amsterdam? Well, search no longer. With the help of Kari Hoerchler (and EuroCheapo.com!) your inquiries are in good hands. Taking a pen, pad and camera everywhere she goes, Kari is always looking out for her readers whether she's traveling around Europe, the United States, or South America. She is also the Managing Editor of EuropeanHostels. When not helping her fans find bargains, Kari enjoys yoga, bicycling and writing novels. At the moment, her prose is taking her and her readers to the science fiction travel destination of the future: a tropical island in the Bermuda Triangle.

Kari Hoerchler

Sarah Silbert

Listings Editor and Copenhagen Reviewer
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A San Diegan born and raised, Sarah is forever catching up on winter weather. This has led her to such exotic destinations as Finland, Copenhagen, and Sweden. Her favorite European destination, however, is Berlin, a city she got to know well thanks to a summer at the Goethe Institute. Sarah joined the EuroCheapo team as an intern while studying at Sarah Lawrence and became a listings editor (and occasional hotel reviewer) upon graduation. Her ideal next trip to Europe would involve a ski excursion in Lapland, taking in the Northern Lights, and plenty of meals at her favorite all-in-one kebab stand in Berlin. When not seeking out chilly locales and cheap falafel, Sarah is perfectly happy practicing her Russian in Brighton Beach.

Sarah Silbert
 Correspondents and Contributors

Eileen "Travel Gram" Detlefsen

Columnist

When she's not traveling or seeing her dear friends in Germany, Denmark, and Austria, Travel Gram resides in the Midwest and takes good care of EuroCheapo's staff kitty, Prince Olaf (see: "Unclassifiable, yet beloved" below). Eileen was born and raised in Ohio and enjoyed working as a reporter on the city desk for The Sandusky Register daily newspaper where she met her husband, also a journalist. Together, a few years later, they started their own newspaper, RFD News (still a well known paper in the Midwest), a bi-monthly publication for farm and suburban families. Over the past three decades, Eileen has enjoyed much overseas travel. She arrived to visit friends in Hamburg the day the Berlin Wall fell. She has visited the Holy Land, seen the Great Pyramids of Egypt, followed in the apostle Paul's journeys from Jerusalem to Rome. Eileen has six grandchildren and one great-grandchild, many of whom she's traveled with abroad.

Travel Gram

Alex Robertson Textor

Editor at Large; New York and London Reviewer

Bitten by the travel bug at 11, Features Editor Alex Robertson Textor has fond childhood memories of ultracheap Spanish hotels (the kind with Styrofoam shelving) and supermarket lunches scarfed on park benches. Formerly an academic, Alex has spent the last several years redirecting his professional life into full-time travel journalism and editing. He has published destination, travel news, and travel strategy articles in the New York Times, Guardian Unlimited, Conde Nast Traveler, Arthur Frommer's Budget Travel, and the San Francisco Bay Guardian, among other publications. A budget travel fan, Alex loves to show people how to travel well on a modest budget.

Alex Robertson Textor

Theadora Brack

Paris Correspondent

Theadora Brack is a writer working in Paris. Her fiction has appeared in more than 30 literary publications, including 3AM International, The Smoking Poet, Beloit Fiction Journal, Mid-American Review, and the Haight-Ashbury Literary Journal.

Theadora Brack

Susan Buzzelli

Berlin Correspondent

A Pittsburgh native who calls Washington, DC home, Susan Buzzelli has been a sworn Germanophile since she spent a high school summer as an exchange student in Buxtehude. After stints in Dresden, Munich, and Hamburg she settled in Europe's most dynamic city: Berlin. When she isn't shuttling between Berlin and D.C., she's traveling throughout Germany (with an occasional hop over the border). Her e-guidebook to Germany, Zeitguide Germany, will be online in 2010.

Susan Buzzelli

Marcus Cederström

Stockholm Correspondent

Marcus Cederström was born in Sweden and moved to the US just before his 6th birthday. He grew up bi-culturally, which he blames for his love of traveling. Eventually he graduated from the University of Oregon with a few different degrees, which he blames for his need to travel cheap. After graduation, Marcus moved back to Sweden. This resulted in Marcus working permanently in Sweden all the while managing to explore Europe. Scuba diving in Greece, Easter in Spain, and Oktoberfest in Germany have been just a few of the stops along the way, all of which are chronicled at A Swedish American in Sweden.

Marcus Cederstrom

Kaymaria Daskarolis

Athens Correspondent

In order to keep a promise she and her brother had made to their grandmother (and to simultaneously fulfill one of her own dreams) Kaymaria left her beloved hometown of Oakland, California and headed to Athens in time for the 2004 Olympics. Today, she continues to work and play in the Greek capital, where you may find her writing atop Lykavittos, road-tripping with overseas guests, enjoying Athens cafe's with friends, dancing to Greek hip-hop music, or reading Greek subtitles in an outdoor cinema. The daughter of two life-long educators and enthusiastic travelers, Kaymaria has explored North America, Mexico, and Europe. It was not until she spent a year as an exchange student at The University of York in England, however, that she discovered that she does not actually speak English.

Kaymaria Daskarolis

T.J. DiChristopher

New York Reviewer

TJ developed a taste for travel while living (and ostensibly) studying in Rome. He soon began catching bargain-basement Ryanair flights to various European destinations, where he would immediately scope out the dodgiest bar upon arrival. (He also saw some art along the way.) After returning to SUNY Albany, he developed an independent study in travel writing, which was mostly an excuse to drive cross-country. The 7200 mile trip, made in 11 days with two friends in a very small red car, culminated in a collection of essays called MOVE!, which he describes as incredibly self-indulgent and quite un-publishable. After moving to Manhattan, he found his way to EuroCheapo and has spent most of his time writing reviews for the New York City listings.

TJ DiChristopher

Elizabeth Gorman

Madrid and Seville Reviewer

After studying abroad in Alicante, Elizabeth Gorman filled her duffel bag and set off for Madrid to help jumpstart an e-zine for young expats and students. She's lived in the Spanish capital ever since. A contributor to MTV Spain, she has written for New York Times T: travel magazine, Maxim, and ELLE Decor. Elizabeth updated EuroCheapo's Madrid listings and added Seville to the site. Her favorite thing about working for EuroCheapo? The opportunity to genuinely take hotels by surprise! Currently, Elizabeth is working on her siesta.

Elizabeth Gorman

Mike Kirwan

Paris Reviewer

Enchanted by maps at a young age, Michael's first voyages were of the unglamourous variety (think Florida, Subarus, and talking mice). It was in an Australian hostel, while sleeping on a bare mattress, that he discovered the value of quality budget travel. Following a six month sejour on Australia's Sunshine Coast, Michael finished his studies at Hunter College in New York and moved to Paris. In Paris, Mike edits and writes for The Paris Times and checks out cheap sleeps for EuroCheapo. When not walking the streets of Paris pretending to be Ernest Hemingway, Michael enjoys penning short stories and playing the didjeridoo.

Mike Kirwan

Annie Shapero

Florence, Milan, Rome, and Venice Reviewer

Annie Shapero was born and raised in the cosmopolitan oasis of Columbia, Missouri. A call to the big city brought her to Chicago, where she pursued a degree at DePaul University's theatre conservatory. Four years of "rigorous, professional" training and a minor in Italian language led her to her next destination: Rome, a city of natural born tragedians with a flair for comedy. There she put her dreams of Broadway stardom on hold and took up a wild series of careers (including "marketing strategist" for an edible Egyptian insecticide). Eventually, she found her niche: writing for "WHERE Magazine Rome." When not in Rome, Annie hops about the Mediterranean, indulging in the local gastronomic and dance traditions. Ole!

Annie Shapero

Regina WB

Barcelona Correspondent

Regina W.Bryan is a Barcelona-based freelance writer and photographer. When not eating tapas and exploring Europe, she is tending her balcony veggie garden and practicing Catalan. For more of her thoughts on Spain, check: www.regwb.com and www.thespainscoop.com.

Regina WB

Miranda Siegel

Salzburg Reviewer

Native New Yorker Miranda fondly recalls family trips to Europe, which featured formative events like spending a night on the roof of an overbooked Greek hotel and sampling the culinary wonders of horse meat. But it was while riding a pony through a patch of wild blueberries in Iceland that she realized she wanted to be an explorer. As an undergrad, Miranda bicycled across the US and lived for several months in Berlin. Nowadays she obsesses over Baltic countries and the plump cream-smothered dumplings to be found there. Fluent in German, she does freelance translation and writes educational material for children.

Vivien Kim Thorp

Editor and Staff Writer

Vivien Kim Thorp got her first taste of travel aboard Caribbean-bound cruises, leaving from her native Florida. While these trips resulted in a life-long aversion to cruise ships, they did whet her appetite to see the world. (One could even call it an addiction.) Since then, she has traveled throughout Europe, Asia, Africa, the Caribbean, and the Americas, though her heart belongs to Southeast Asia. Her most recent thrills include driving a team of sled dogs in northern Sweden, diving with manta rays in Komodo, and wandering through the Temples of Karnak in Luxor. She recommends adding the following items to your "try it at least once" list: raw horse meat, fried spiders, and bear carpaccio. Vivien has a bachelor's degree in English and Asian American Studies from U.C. Berkeley and is working on earning a master's degree from the University of Missouri's School of Journalism.

Vivien Kim Thorp
 Unclassifiable, yet beloved

Gianni Bettucci

Writer/Cheapo Emeritus

Gianni joined Tom in February of 2001 in his hometown of Florence, Italy. Together, they inspected hundreds of budget hotels in Florence, Rome, and Amsterdam, before settling down for the year in Berlin. On their first day working on the site in Rome, Gianni and Tom had lunch in a Chinese restaurant where Gianni started listing off the criteria for what would come to define a EuroCheapo hotel. Five years later, Gianni still resides in Berlin, where he is the company manager for the theater troupe "Familie Flöz." Gianni has a doctorate in literature from the University of Florence.

Gianni Bettucci

Emily Ford

Writer/Cheapo Emeritus

EuroCheapo + Emily = Good Times. A notorious multi-tasker, Emily was writing a thesis in Berlin, freelancing at the BBC World Service in London and traipsing around the rest of Europe in what free time she had. At her best, she was able to visit a site of ancient ruins and a beach every day for two months. Thanks to countless NYC connections, Tom was able to chase down and recruit Emily while both were based in Berlin. Back in New York now, she is ever-dedicated to all things international and will soon return to school for a doctorate in International Education.

Emily Ford

Mauricio Mena

Writer/Cheapo Emeritus

Though a native of New York City, Mauricio Mena has lived in so many countries that he considers himself "globoset" -- too poor for jet set, but entirely too mobile for normal. As a hotel investigator, Mauricio tirelessly surveyed hotels by the hundred and learned quickly how to separate the sketchy from the sublime. He often dreams of his favorites -- was that balcony overlooking Plaza del Sol in Madrid or the sun-kissed hills of Lisboa? Poor guy. He currently lives in Los Angeles, where he is finishing his third screenplay, and has lived in Seville and Berlin.

Oliver "Prince Olaf" Meyers

Complaint Resolution Coordinator
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Born with a couple of extra toes, Oliver—recently renamed Prince Olaf (hey, it just works)—hails from Bellevue, Ohio and made his big move to the Big Apple at the tender age of four months. This kitty was ready for the big city and did enjoy his beat in Chinatown, but feeling the need to sprawl out and yearning to become an outdoor cat for part of the year, he recently relocated back to Ohio. In his words, "I guess I knew I was made for complaint resolution coordination ever since I was declawed." Oliver has never been to Europe and makes no apologies for it.

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