Trip Region: Western Europe
Country(ies): Netherlands, Germany, Czech Republic
Partners Trek? No
Trip Cost: $2540
Airfare Estimate: $1000
Nightlife: 3 • Activity: 3
In the Summer of 2016, five wide-eyed MBA-1s embarked on a 10-day Eastern European Mtrek. It was through the shared experiences of sleeping through a Viennese symphony, raving in the mold-infested basement of a Budapest ruin bar, and ingesting enough beer and schnitzel to put an elephant into cardiac arrest that Adi, Ben, Drew, Pauline, and Sabrina forged bonds (we mean relationships, not counterfeiting) and memories to last a lifetime.
Now, it’s our chance to pay it forward. Against a backdrop that includes the scintillating sights, sounds, and tastes of Amsterdam, Berlin, and Prague, we five have organized “…the greatest, most amazing, most tremendous…” Mtrek that Ross will ever know.
If you choose to join us, you too will become the stuff of legends.
Day 1 — Saturday, Aug 19
Our adventure begins on Saturday, August 19th at 6pm in Amsterdam.** After dealing with the typical formalities, we’ll go on a guided tour of Amsterdam to get the lay of the land, followed by a casual group dinner. Shenanigans to follow. ** We recommend taking an afternoon/early evening flight out of Detroit on Friday, August 18 to ensure you’re that you’re on the ground and ready to roll Amsterdam-style on Saturday.
Day 2 — Sunday, Aug 20
When in Amsterdam, do as the…Amsterdam-ans do? We’ll take in the city on a 2 hour bike tour. After working up an appetite, we’ll cancel out those bike-burned calories with a carb-loaded binge-fest, Amsterdam-style: Salty fries, boozy spirits, and gouda cheese await. After feasting, we’ll have a chance to wander the scenic streets and canals, do a little shopping, take some pics, and most importantly, shower before an epic bar/club crawl in Amsterdam.
Day 3 — Monday, Aug 21
We start the day off by visiting Anne Frank’s house and then making our way to De Waag, a 15th century building on Nieuwmarkt square, a building with a rich history. Chinese food for lunch, followed by the Heineken Museum for a brewery tour and tasting. Finally, we end the night with a 1.5 hour scenic cruise along the canals, while enjoying all the food and beer you can handle.
Day 4 — Tuesday, Aug 22
We take a train to Berlin in the late afternoon. After arriving, we will have an orientation walk to get the lay of the land, followed by a group dinner. After dinner, we’ll head to the Brandenburg Gate to explore the nightlife.
Day 5 — Wednesday, Aug 23
We spend today exploring the Reichstag, which holds a special meaning outside of its role as the Parliament. It also offers sweeping views over Berlin. After this, we will then explore the Bauhaus museum. We shall then go and explore one of the many beer gardens that plays live music.
Day 6 — Thursday, Aug 24
Spend some time exploring the remnants of the Berlin Wall, pay a visit to the Holocaust Museum, or explore Berlin's many parks. Don't be surprised if we end up at an absinthe bar, the city is famous for them.
Day 7 — Friday, Aug 25
We board a late morning train to Prague. After arriving, we will explore the Prague Castle (not completely as there is too much to see here) and wander through the old Jewish Quarter. Prague has one of the most respected Jazz scenes in Europe and we will start the night by exploring one of these bars, enjoying a few cocktails, and then go clubbing!
Day 8 — Saturday, Aug 26
Continue exploring all that Prague's gothic architecture has to offer, but make sure you're back in time for dinner. We'll be worshipping at Strahov Monastic Brewery, where we'll have dinner and all of the beers!
Day 9 — Sunday, Aug 27
In the morning, we will be taken to Cesky Krumlov, a picturesque medieval town that dates back to the 13th century that appears to be plucked straight out of a fairy tale. We will spend the day wandering the cobbled alleyways, climb up the castle perched on a hill and check out it's fabulous Masquerade Hall. We then return to Prague and go out to explore the night life.
Day 10 — Monday, Aug 28
We spend the day discovering the Bohemian Prague. We will learn how the Bohemian artists, writers, and dissidents shaped the Bohemian mentality of the nation. We will continue to sample Czech beers and food along the way. The evening is spent hanging out with other beer appreciators on a tour to sip local ales and learn why Prague is one of the best city in the world for drinking beer. Along the way, we will savour Czech’s ‘beer tapas’ in different pubs. Lastly, we will explore the local and less-touristy districts of Zizkov and Vinohardy.
Day 11 — Tuesday, Aug 29
It's time to say goodbye to Prague and a great Mtrek. Thank the stars that you don't have to get off a plane and start classes immediately...you may event want to continue exploring Europe just a little longer. After all, the first game of the season is away.
Ben "Ice Ice Baby" Pearlman
Ben ICE ICE BABY Pearlman’s origins remain a matter of debate. A host of forged documents and doctored childhood photos suggest a sheltered upbringing in metropolitan Detroit, but corroborated eyewitness testimony affirms that he is the one and only love child of President Donald Trump and once Presidential hopeful, Carly Fiorina. It is said that Ben selflessly donated his right kidney to father Trump, who derives his superpowers from eating the organs of his young.
A second time Michigan Wolverine, Ben’s true love is healthcare consulting, closely followed by making stacks of cash, English Bulldogs, and flipping houses. Ben’s greatest challenge in life is to find an establishment in Europe capable of serving a) a cold, crisp beverage; b) over several cubes of ice, while c) in an air-conditioned environment. A visionary. A genius. A dreamer.
Sabrina "SJP" Jimenez-Pantoja
Sabrina Jimenez-Pantoja (aka SJP) hails from the closest South American city to the US…..Miami! In addition to her passion for hyphenated last names, her hobbies include rocking the tourist look with a fanny pack and paper maps in Europe, running a support group for T-Rex’s limiting appendages, and forcing animal-activist documentaries onto innocent roommates. She’s known on a first-name basis by all the local Starbucks baristas, she hopes to contribute a fanny pack of Tostidos and an intimate knowledge of several (admittedly not useful) languages to this MTrek, and her favorite show currently is the Mindy Project, to which she can relate on too many levels.
This summer she will work in investment banking in New York. Before Ross she followed the non-traditional path of joining a big 4 firm and spent three years in consulting in the big apple. Sabrina is super excited to meet all of the MBA 1s and help guide through the rigors of the first year — Ann Arbor late night pizza.
Drew is an east coast transplant who has dedicated his life to teaching Midwesterners what it means to have a cynical sense of humor. It hasn’t gone well… He’s known for sending calendar invites for just about anything, eating Korean food in immodest amounts, and an award-winning performance (see: Miss Winter Garden) in a bustier and red wig at MBgAy. If there’s one thing Drew is most excited for in life, it’s having kids so that he can embarrass them with his sub-par dad jokes.
After spending most of his livelihood in consulting, Drew decided to get one of those fancy degrees to pivot into marketing. He is the textbook definition of an open book – there’s pretty much nothing he won’t tell you if you ask (or even if you don’t). Rule of thumb: if you value your time, don’t ask where he’s from, he’ll give you some convoluted answer about being from Pittsburgh, Charlotte, Raleigh, DC, Baltimore, and coming to Ross from Philly. He’s your go-to guy for a boost of confidence on a bad day, or an aimless walk around an unfamiliar city on a free day…just be prepared to stop for carbs.
Pauline "Palinka!" Park
They say you can’t be in love with two people at once. Must not be true because Pauline is basically in love with her entire MBA class. LA girl gone Michigander, she is always tryna bring some of that California sunshine to the midwest! When she is not busting out tunes at Ann Arbor’s finest karaoke establishment or sitting at home watching (maybe crying at) youtube videos of grandparents receiving puppies as surprise presents, you can find Pauline on the dance floor. Like, literally any dance floor.
Pauline is excited to dance and drink her way through Europe with all of you, and she can answer any burning questions you have about dat MBA lyfe. What’s it like being a career switcher? Should I be in Tauber? Where can I get decent Mexican food in AA?? (Honestly, nowhere.) She can answer it all – but be warned: you will have to look at 10000000 pictures of her hybrid wolfdog, Luna, first.
Adi "PaparAdi" Garudadri
Adi ‘PaparAdi’ Garudadri is your crocodile-fighting and spider-catching Australian tour guide for the trip. In reality, he hates spiders more than Ron Weasley and should we run into a crocodile in the mean canals of Amsterdam, he will tearfully run the other way, but not before adding it to his Snapchat story. But fear not trekkers, his sparkly, Crest-certified smile will get you out of peril during your travels, as he has a knack for befriending strangers. This hip-hop aficionado turned strategy consultant’s sweater game could rival even the most preppy ivy-league frat stars. Adi’s unique ability to bring life to the party, and repeat the same three dance moves all night long is second to none, and will be valuable as we rage through Europe. Spend enough time with Adi, and you’ll end up experiencing his theory on how to survive the impending robo-pocalypse, the latest standup special, and his well-intentioned but horrible attempts at puns. He is really excited about experiencing all that Amsterdam, Berlin, and Prague have to offer with you all.