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A Travel Blog from the Editors of T+L

RSS Feed Posts by Kathryn O'Shea-Evans

Dispatch from the Norwegian Breakaway

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I just returned from a lunch on board New York’s finest… Cruise ship. Here’s what made me want to do a Rockette leg-kick on the Norwegian Breakaway:

  • Spa cabins are actually relaxing. It’s worth splurging on the Haven Spa Suite for its whirlpool, which sits adjacent to your private balcony and overlooks the ocean. Another perk: access to the Haven (ship-within-a-ship) courtyard and… Drumroll, please... 24-hour butler service.
  • The Ice Bar. It’s a hot day here in New York, and stepping into the 17-degree room was totally (ahem) cool. The best part? The Statue of Liberty and Brooklyn Bridge carved into the ice.
  • The Spaitself, which is gorgeous in a heart-palpitating sort of way, with waterfalls in the hot tub and a salt cave. If I ever get to take a cruise on the Breakaway, you’ll probably find me here—recovering from my Rockette-led work-out.

Kathryn O'Shea-EvansKathryn O'Shea-Evans is an associate editor at Travel + Leisure. Follow her on Twitter @ThePluckyOne.

Photo courtesy of Norwegian Cruise Lines

Beauty Road Test: Gaiam Sage Lily Yoga Mat

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Are the latest beauty and wellness products worthy of a spot in your teensy carry-on? T+L Associate Editor Kathryn O’Shea-Evans shares her take.

The Product: Gaiam Sage Lily Yoga Mat, $29

Pros: The trouble with being a globe-trotting yogini? The perfect tote-able yoga mat is hard to find. The latest version from Gaiam is lightweight and nonslip, and a cushy 5 mm thick. Another perk: it was made without phthalates (creepy chemicals whose presence is the exact opposite of relaxing).

Cons: As noted, it’s 5 mm thick, so not great for plane travel. But for a road trip? Just throw it in the trunk and say ommmmmmmm.

Verdict: Packable for a road trip; leave it at home for flights.

Kathryn O'Shea-EvansKathryn O'Shea-Evans is an associate editor at Travel + Leisure. Follow her on Twitter @ThePluckyOne.

Photo courtesy of Gaiam

Wake Up and Go: Weekend Getaways from St. Louis

Travel + Leisure’s Kathryn O’Shea-Evans presents easy weekend getaways from St. Louis, Missouri, on the Weather Channel’s Wake Up and Go.

1. NATURAL PARADISE: Big Cedar Lodge, Ridgedale, Missouri
A great family getaway set on 800 acres in the heart of the Ozark mountains, overlooking bass-filled Table Rock Lake. 81 just-renovated cabins have wood-burning fireplaces and western-inspired interiors, but who wants to stay inside when the great outdoors await? DON’T MISS Paddleboard yoga on the shimmering private marina, and, come evening, the Campfire Wagon Tours in an antique wagon. PRICE $149 a night. BOOK NOW.

2. GATSBY-ERA GLAM: Raphael Hotel, Kansas City, MO
Fronting chic County Club Plaza, one of the nation’s oldest outdoor suburban shopping centers, 126-room Raphael Hotel is a landmark 1920’s Renaissance Revival building, with custom mahogany millwork and travertine marble flooring. DON’T MISS Jazz dinners at Chaz on the Plaza, where local musicians perform Tuesday through Sunday evenings. PRICE $209 a night. BOOK NOW.

3. ART-FILLED RETREAT: 21C Museum Hotel, Louisville, KY
Designed by New York architect Deborah Berke, this 90-room property has a multi-million dollar art collection worthy of MoMa. Explore the exhibits—which are free and open to the public—or just hang out in your spare-but-polished room, with exposed brick walls and cheeky details, such as rubber ducky’s in the shower. DON’T MISS The Urban Bourbon Trail, a walking tour of 50-plus bourbons with a stop at 21c’s Proof on Main. PRICE $229 a night. BOOK NOW.

Related: T+L's Weekend Getaways

Beauty Road Test: Ole Henriksen Truth to Go Wipes

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Are the latest beauty and wellness products worthy of a spot in your teensy carry-on? T+L Associate Editor Kathryn O’Shea-Evans shares her take.

The product: Ole Henriksen Truth to Go Wipes, from $6

Pros: These über-portable towelettes remove all trace of makeup—even waterproof mascara (no easy feat, I assure you). They also promise to firm skin (with micro algae) and brighten (with vitamin C), but I like that they smell like a Creamsicle.

Cons: Nothing beats washing your face with actual water, but Truth to Go Wipes are the next best thing.

Verdict:  Packable.

Kathryn O'Shea-EvansKathryn O'Shea-Evans is an associate editor at Travel + Leisure. Follow her on Twitter @ThePluckyOne.

Photo courtesy of OLEHENRIKSEN

Martha Stewart's Travel Beauty Bag

Martha Stewart's beauty bag

The domestic doyenne and author of this month’s Living the Good Long Life (Random House; $28) reveals her carry-on arsenal.

Clé de Peau Beauté Refining Fluid Foundation ($120). “The best I’ve found.”

SkinCeuticals C E Ferulic ($146).Always use it pre-makeup.”

Susan Ciminelli Algae Deep Cleanse ($65). “Feels so fresh!”

Fekkai Salon Technician Color Care Shampoo and Conditioner ($18). “Makes hair, in a word, lustrous.”

AmorePacific Moisture Bound Tinted Treatment Moisturizer ($70). “Protects my skin with sunblock and has a hint of color.”

Mario Badescu Super Rich Olive Body Lotion ($10). “I transfer it to a tiny bottle and add a Martha Stewart for Avery label. I have to stay organized!”

Kathryn O'Shea-EvansKathryn O'Shea-Evans is an associate editor at Travel + Leisure. Follow her on Twitter @ThePluckyOne.

 

Photo by John Lawton

Cruise News: Disney Magic Gets a Makeover

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Announced today in Celebration, Florida: Disney’s first cruise ship, The Disney Magic, is about to go through a bow to stern overhaul. The most magical elements? A new Marvel Comics Avengers Academy, where young cruisers can train as superhero "recruits" in academy missions; Pixie Hollow, a twinkling forest where tea is served on stools shaped like mushrooms and acorns; and Disney’s Oceaneer Lab, a pirate-themed art room.

Adults will love the 11,500-square foot ocean-view spa and restaurant Palo, modeled after the canal-side cafes of Venice. Look for the new and improved Disney Magic in Fall 2013.

Kathryn O'Shea-EvansKathryn O'Shea-Evans is an associate editor at Travel + Leisure. Follow her on Twitter @ThePluckyOne.


Photo courtesy of Disney Cruise Line

Beauty Road Test: Lavanila Fresh Lemon Deodorant

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Are the latest beauty and wellness products worthy of a spot in your teensy carry-on? T+L Associate Editor Kathryn O’Shea-Evans shares her take.

The product: Lavanila Fresh Lemon Deodorant

Pros: Lavanila’s latest is 100% natural (no phthalates, no aluminum). It’s so natural, in fact, that the first three ingredients are aloe, corn, and coconut derived. Added bonus: it smells like fresh-baked lemon cookies.

Cons: I literally have nothing bad to say about this deodorant—except that it was so wonderful it forced me to write a blog post about deodorant (not the sexiest topic). But hey, everybody uses it, right? Right?
 
Verdict: Packable.

Kathryn O'Shea-EvansKathryn O'Shea-Evans is an associate editor at Travel + Leisure. Follow her on Twitter @ThePluckyOne.

 

 

Photo courtesy of Lavanila

Open Letter to an Airplane Seatmate

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Dear Airplane Seatmate,

Remember when we used to be cordial? You’d show me a photo of your kid, I’d show you my dachshund, and we’d giggle while munching pretzels. I’m loath to admit it, but I don’t miss those days. Like a couple who’ve been together for decades, we’re way beyond chitchat. That’s why I brought my iPad.

Yet there are still a few simple rules of engagement that will keep us both happy. For starters, don’t order bottle after teensy bottle until you fall asleep on my shoulder. Don’t ask if your spouse/partner/mother-in-law can switch seats with me. I booked this spot for a reason (and won’t you see plenty of them on vacation?). If I offer you a mint, take it—please. And by all means, lay off the perfume! We’re sitting in an airtight container, after all.

Sorry to be so blunt. Even if this feels like public transportation, it really isn’t. But there’s no reason we can’t be civil. I’ll happily give you the armrest and lower the shade so you can watch your movie. We may never be Facebook friends, but you’re still my high-flying compadre, taking in the world with me from an awe-inspiring 36,000 feet, and if we hit some unexpected turbulence, you can bet I’ll be grabbing your arm.

Yours,
The T+L Editors

Kathryn O'Shea-EvansKathryn O'Shea-Evans is an associate editor at Travel + Leisure. Follow her on Twitter @ThePluckyOne.

 

 

Photo by iStockphoto

Beauty Road Test: John Frieda Luxurious Volume Fine to Full Blow-Out Spray

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Are the latest beauty and wellness products worthy of a spot in your teensy carry-on? T+L Associate Editor Kathryn O’Shea-Evans shares her take.

The product: John Frieda Luxurious Volume Fine to Full Blow-Out Spray; $10

Pros: For someone with the finest hair in creation, I had high hopes for this (translation: I hoped my hair would get considerably high-er). And—surprise—it did! A few spritzes at my roots gave me news anchor-volume.

Cons: Unfortunately the bottle is too big to make it past the TSA, so won't work if you carry on.

Verdict:  Packable—but only if you’re checking your bag.

Kathryn O'Shea-EvansKathryn O'Shea-Evans is an associate editor at Travel + Leisure. Follow her on Twitter @ThePluckyOne.

Photo by John Frieda Luxurious Volume

Beauty Road Test: La Prairie Essence of Skin Caviar Eye Complex

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Are the latest beauty and wellness products worthy of a spot in your teensy carry-on? T+L Associate Editor Kathryn O’Shea-Evans shares her take.

The product: La Prairie Essence of Skin Caviar Eye Complex; $135

Pros: Okay, I admit it. I look awful after a long-haul flight. This serum—with its amino acids, vitamins, and (yes!) extracts of caviar—revives the skin around my worn-out eyes, hydrating and de-puffing.

Cons: Sticker shock is high, but hey, it’s La Prairie. And what do you expect for a self-touted “mini eyelift”?

Verdict: Packable.

Kathryn O'Shea-EvansKathryn O'Shea-Evans is an associate editor at Travel + Leisure. Follow her on Twitter @ThePluckyOne.

Photo courtesy of la prarie

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