I have sometimes thought that magazines should be produced in mobile units that roam the terrain of their readers. This would be one sure way to avoid something I call the New York Syndrome, which can afflict national publications produced in environments inhabited more by the editors' peers than by the majority of their subscribers—and the illusion that one's friends in TriBeCa or Williamsburg speak with the voice of America. So it is always with particular enthusiasm that I review the choices our readers make in Travel + Leisure's annual World's Best Awards survey, as an opportunity to gauge their interests and tastes. A thumbnail sketch of the selections in this, our 11th year of the survey, would be farther, smaller, and more unique—hotels in India, lodges in Africa, a castle in Scotland, more Asian properties than ever before, and a relatively undiscovered Caribbean island (Saba). The good news for us is that this direction is very much in sync with the content you'll find in T+L.
Travel + Leisure's awards issue appears each August, at the peak—and last gasp—of summer, and traditionally offers prime vacation ideas as well, this year ranging from a food lover's tour of coastal Maine ("Maine Course"), by editor-at-large Peter Jon Lindberg, to a roots trip in Greece and Turkey with deputy editor George Kalogerakis ("Aegean Odyssey"). Along the way, we wander the moors of Devon ("The Country Life") with special correspondent Christopher Petkanas, shop the trendy new boutiques on Melrose Avenue in Los Angeles ("L.A. Street Style"), and scope out the contrasting elements in that less-traveled Asian metropolis, Kuala Lumpur ("Back to the Future"), just to name a few destinations.
Our thanks go to those of you who participated in the 2006 World's Best Awards survey. And herewith, an invitation to all readers: please e-mail us your thoughts about the awards, the magazine, and travel in general. We need and value your feedback—whether you live in Peoria, TriBeCa, or Brooklyn.