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Perfect Men’s Spring Outfit

men's outfit

These sporty pieces will have you ready for a weekend getaway.

A Dapper Look: Cotton polo shirt, $80, by Lacoste. Lightweight corduroy blazer, $695, Gant by Michael Bastian. Linen shirt, $195, and cotton pants, $125, Façonnable. Seersucker belt, $80, Ernest Alexander. Leather-and-suede saddle shoes with Nike Air technology, $198, Cole Haan. Gingham bow tie, $60, Ernest Alexander. Canvas tote with calfskin details, $450, Ralph Lauren.

Photo by Teru Onishi

Last-Chance Spring Skiing

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I know most people in the U.S. are head over heels for spring right now, breaking out the shorts, the bikes, even thinking about the bathing suit. But I can’t quite let go of ski season. It was a record one this year and, of course, I wish I had gotten out on my board just a few more times. If, like me, you are holding on to the dream of just one more outing into the white stuff, there are a few places where you can make it come true.

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Shopping Moscow's Market

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Rinok. Just saying the word brings a sense of calm to my disjointed Russian life in Moscow. All at once, the sprawl of doorways open as if they are choreographed. I pass stalls where ducks and coffee and wild honey are being sold. You can get your keys copied, or a box of chocolates, maybe a fuzzy pair of house slippers. When they are in season, truckloads of watermelons are sold by the hour.

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Q&A: Writer Paul Theroux

Paul Theroux

In The Tao of Travel (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt; $25), out this month, the peripatetic writer compiles wisdom from an array of literature and life on the road. Here, he shares a few tidbits with T+L.

Q: Other than writing, how do you document your adventures?

A: I collect knick-knacks people have used, like snuff boxes and voodoo figures. There’s a Polynesian word, mana, meaning the spiritual power of an object—those things appeal to me.

Q: What have you learned from other writers?

A: As Flaubert said, when you’re traveling, you realize how small you are. Dollars are helpful, but a smile is more valuable.

Q: Is there a 21st-century Grand Tour?

A: In the 19th century, it was London, Paris, Rome, and Greece. Today it’s a global buffet: a safari in Africa, the Great Wall of China, the Taj Mahal, Machu Picchu, and the Carnival, in Brazil.

Photo by Steve McCurry

Guess Where? Hallway

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This hallway may remind of the set from a Harry Potter movie, but it's not in Europe. Can you figure out where this is?

Log in and leave your guesses below and be sure to check back on Monday for the correct answer.

UPDATE 5/09/11: We finally stumped you guys! While there were some great guesses, nobody figured out that these gothic arches are at New Jersey's Princeton University. Look for our next edition of Guess Where? this Friday.

Lyndsey Matthews is an online editorial assistant at Travel + Leisure.

Photo courtesy of Travel + Leisure's Photography Contest

Winner! Family Getaways Photo Contest

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Congratulations to the winner of our family getaways photo contest, James Mandeville! Members of our online community picked his photo "Those Summers on the Lake" from the 609 images that were submitted to the contest. For his photo, taken in Pond Eddy, NY, he won an AOC: Breeze Tablet and publication in Travel + Leisure. Congrats, James!

Budapest’s Chic New Hot Spots

Budapest

Hungary’s capital has always had a few things going for it: classical music; Art Nouveau architecture; a wine scene just out of town. Design and luxury, not so much—until this year. Opening in June, the 67-room Rácz Hotel & Thermal Spa (raczhotel.com; doubles from $336), near the city’s main shopping street, has dramatic chandeliers and views of the Royal Palace, but the real draw is the 16th-century, unesco-designated hammam spa with domed ceilings. Up next this summer: the 102-room Buddha-Bar Hotel Budapest Klotild Palace (buddhabarhotelbudapest.com), the second hotel project by the renowned Parisian hospitality group, with an Asian themed bar and a restaurant with—yes!—an enormous Buddha as its centerpiece. Further evidence of Budapest’s new Golden Era of Design? WAMP (wamp.hu), a burgeoning monthly fair showcasing everything from fashion to dishware by local young artists.

Photo courtesy of Rácz Hotel & Thermal Spa

Jeweler Kendra Scott Opens Flagship Store in Austin

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Austin
, Texas has always favored and encouraged local entrepreneurs; it’s how they “Keep Austin Weird.” Although Kendra Scott is a Wisconsin native, she began her jewelry line as a mini-collection in Austin in 2002 with only $500, an extra bedroom and a newborn baby. Today, her collections are in more than 800 stores worldwide including big name retailers such as Nordstrom, Henri Bendel, and Lord & Taylor. Due to Austin’s large part in the success of Kendra’s company, she only felt it was appropriate to anchor her flagship store in this flourishing city.

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Cinco de Mayo Savings at One&Only Palmilla

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It's Cinco de Mayo today and you know what that means. Yes, that's right, 2-for-1 margaritas at Benny's Downtown Tap Room. No! Think bigger. It's the anniversary of the 1862 Battle of Puebla, when a ragtag Mexican army unexpectedly whipped the better-trained French, guaranteeing the country's independence. Strange to say, the anniversary is more popular in the United States than in Mexico (and not at all popular in France). So for anyone looking for a reason to celebrate, check this deal out.

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Vacationist Hotel Deals: Memorial Day Escapes in San Diego, Acapulco, London

201105-b-estanciajpgStill without plans for the upcoming long weekend, now just 23 days away? Head to Vacationist for 11 hotel deals with availability May 27-30th. West coasters will love half-off rates at Estancia La Jolla Hotel & Spa, near San Diego’s beaches and Sea World. Further afield, Acapulco’s iconic pink palace Las Brisas, a World’s Best Hotel for Value, has oceanfront, bungalow-style casitas available for the holiday weekend, as does the Landmark London, a World’s Best Business Hotel in London's Marylebone neighborhood, where rates are as spectacular as the property’s Gothic Revival interiors.

Still not a member? Click here to join.

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Just Back: Pebble Beach Food & Wine

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I just returned from an amazing weekend at the fourth-annual Pebble Beach Food & Wine, a four-day festival in one of the most beautiful settings—Monterey, California. I was there on business, but it’s times like these that I realize how fortunate I am to do what I do.

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From my arrival at the Monterey airport—complete with an unbelievable aerial view of the Inn at Spanish Bay and Peninsula—I knew I was in for a good time. What’s not to love about great food and drink, and golf at the wildly scenic Pebble Beach Golf Links? (Here I am (on the left) with Cody Plott, president and chief operating officer of Pebble Beach.)

But as I discovered, too much natural beauty can be a distraction. I hate to admit it… it wasn't one of my better performances. When you play this legendary course without a cloud in the sky, it’s not about the golf, it’s all about the setting. And there was an interruption at every hole—whales, Cypress trees, fabulous homes. My golf game wasn’t top of mind. Can you blame me?

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African Bazaar at Donna Karan’s Urban Zen

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Get your tribal on at Urban Zen during its colorful African Bazaar. Carved wooden bowls, beaded bracelets, gorgeous cotton sarongs, woven beach baskets crafted by Samburu nomads. And warriors performing ritual dances!

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TODAY Show: America's Best Affordable Hotels

Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

T+L Features Director Nilou Motamed shares the best affordable hotel deals right now. Find luxury for less from Charleston to Las Vegas. Watch now—and read the full article here.

Contest Watch: Win 1 Million Air Miles, a Bulgari Watch + More!

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This month's contest watch is all about accessories: camera, watch, lei, whatever. With two photo contests, a Bulgari watch-giveaway, and a dream trip to Hawaii, there's something for everyone's taste.

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Beloved Cuban Rhumba Troupe Caps Off Tour in New York

During the 2010-11 season, cultural exchange between the United States and Cuba has demonstrated marked achievements. Last fall, musicians from Jazz at Lincoln Center and the dancers of American Ballet Theatre performed in front of packed Cuban audiences and offered master classes to gifted, young Cuban performers (the New York Philharmonic is planning a visit). On our shores, the electrifying  musicians and dancers Los Muñequitos de Matanzas are winding up a month-long, 16-city American tour that began in Seattle in early April and concludes in New York City (May 5-7) and Purchase, New York (May 8).

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Travel Editor Gets A Refund—And A Comeuppance

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Sometimes an airline does things right. Not often, true, but every once in a great while. Those of you who read this blog regularly know that I rarely have anything good to say about the airline industry. New regulations announced this month by the Department of Transportation are just the latest evidence that the airlines aren't able to offer good customer service on their own, and have to rely on the government to step in and force them to be good corporate citizens. But here's a quick little story that shows maybe, just maybe, things are improving and that at least one airline is doing things better.

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Secrets of the National Parks: Yosemite

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As someone who has lived and worked in three national parks, I know there are some things most tourists will never visit—from hidden hikes and waterfalls to the best happy hours. I turned to ranger Scott Gediman to find insider secrets about California’s Yosemite National Park, an Ansel Adams photograph sprung-to-life.


Q: What’s a surprisingly little-known hike in the park?

A: Yosemite Valley gets a bad rap for being so crowded, but on the 13-mile Valley Floor Loop Trail, you’ll stroll past Yosemite Falls, the base of El Capitan, and Bridal Veil Falls—all with nobody in sight. It’s an old bridle path for horses, so very flat and easy to get to.

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Guess Where? Man on White Horse

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This picture of a horse and its rider were carved into a hill in the early 19th century in a seaside town. Do you have any idea where this is? Bonus points if you can guess which king is was created in honor of!

Log in and leave your guesses below and be sure to check back on Monday for the correct answer.

UPDATE 5/02/11: Way to go T+L community member BrendaWeatherhead! You guessed correctly that this hillside carving is the Osmington White Horse monument in Dorset, near Weymouth Bay. This 260 ft. figure was carved into the hills in 1808 by locals in honor of King George III who frequently visited the town.

Lyndsey Matthews is an online editorial assistant at Travel + Leisure.

Photo courtesy of Travel + Leisure's Photography Contest

A Fashion Photog Goes Rogue in Paris

201104-b-paris-5jpgRead the first part of guest blogger-photographer Elizabeth Lippman’s special series about departing from the fashion flock here.

In the beginning: disaster. ALL my luggage is lost. I have my cameras and my computer, but no clothing. Let me repeat: NO. CLOTHES. For PARIS FASHION WEEK. I have only what I am wearing, my traveling-at-4am-clothes, and a toothbrush.

Happily, my husband Jac is meeting me at CDG, and we take the RER together right to the neighborhood of our first Paris apartment—"Le Studio de St. Paul" from Airbnb.com, which I've booked for three nights for $359. It's a TINY studio with a loft bed, RIGHT on Rivoli/St. Antoine in the heart of Le Marais, and packed with the clothing and personal items of the owner, a young actress. She greets us, and gives us the keys.

201104-b-paris-6jpgThe apartment is above a French chocolate store, the L'Atelier du Chocolat, and the scent of bittersweet chocolate wafts thru the open windows. Not bad. My husband has only been to Paris once, and I am eager to show him “my Paris,” my bars and cafes and, most importantly, now that I have no luggage, my favorite boutiques, all in the Marias—Blancs Manteaux, Les Petits, and Maje. BHV, where I stocked up on Princess Tam Tam and Etam undies. We make our way to Rue Charonne. Luckily for my bank account, the Isabel Marant boutique at no. 16 is closed.

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Ooh La La! Philly Arts Festival Channels France

Philadelphia, the City of Brotherly Love, has long shared a bond with the City of Light (statesmen, inventor, composer, and proud Philadelphian Benjamin Franklin served as ambassador to France). The period of especially fervent artistic creativity that characterized Paris between 1910 to 1920 is the inspiration for the Philadelphia International Festival of the Arts, taking place through this weekend, April 29-May 1, and which offers 30 commissioned, new works of music, drama, art, and flash mob dancing!

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Ralph Lauren Exhibits Car Collection in Paris

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Growing up, Ralph Lauren recalls, his family did not really have the means to buy a car. But that was a world, a lifetime and a storied empire ago.

This week, the crème de la crème of the designer’s car collection—roughly a third of the total—bows in the Louvre’s Musée des Arts Décoratifs, a final highlight in a year marked by the opening of the designer’s flagship and restaurant on the boulevard Saint Germain and his reception of the Legion d’Honneur from President Sarkozy.

The Art of the Automobile: Masterpieces from the Ralph Lauren Collection is a variation on the successful Boston car event five years ago. A showcase of 17 exceptional cars that marked the history of auto-making for their design and technical prowess, it opens with the mysterious and stunning 1938 Bugatti Atlantic, one of only a handful ever created. There follows the massive 1929 Bentley Blower painted with the Union Jack; a separate enclave to the right houses the most modern icon in the exhibit, an orange 1996 McLaren F1 LM  supercar.

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T+L's Best of Europe for iPad!

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All this Royal Wedding chatter got you thinking about your next trip to London? Or maybe it’s the weather forecast in Santorini you’re after (high 60s, scattered showers and possible T-storms until Saturday….) Check out Best of Europe, Travel + Leisure’s latest digital edition for iPad ($1.99), now at TravelandLeisure.com/iPad or on the App Store. The editors of T+L have put together an essential compendium of where to go right now from the Azores to Istanbul, just in time for your summer holiday planning.

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Kate Betts on First Lady Fashion—and (Yes) the Royal Wedding Dress

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Wonder what Kate Middleton’s going to wear down the Westminster Abbey aisle this Friday? Or what Michelle Obama’s going to wear on just about any given day of the week? Recently, I chatted with T+L contributing editor and style guru Kate Betts—hot off the heels of publishing her new book, Everyday Icon: Michelle Obama and the Power of Style (Clarkson Potter, $35)—about the fashion sensibilities of first ladies around the globe.

201104-b-first-lady-michelle-obamajpgQ: People the world over have been enraptured by Michelle Obama’s sense of style. Considering her presence on the international stage, what sort of statement is she making about herself—and America—through what she wears?

A: She is making a statement about the power of confidence. The idea of wearing young, unknown American designers perfectly mirrors many of the ideas her husband campaigned on: new faces, new ideas, change. And at the recent state dinner for the President of China, she made a very bold statement by not wearing a dress designed by an American. A lot of people were upset about that—particularly the American fashion industry. But to my mind her self-possession and confidence define American style better than any label in her dress ever would.

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Vacationist: Ode To Greece

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The recent turn of weather reminded us that summer actually is right around the corner. Where else would we rather be than the Greek Isles this summer? Thanks to Vacationist, you can now book a trip there for less. We have options for all types of travelers, from a couples-only resort onthe southeastern coast of Mykonos to large family-friendly villas on Nikiti's pristine coast. Since the summer season is popular in Greece, be sure to book a room now.

Still not a member? Click here to join.

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Sardinia’s New Lighthouse Hotel

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Nine days in the Sardinian town of Cagliari in 1921 was all it took to inspire D. H. Lawrence to write one of the last century’s great travel narratives, Sea and Sardinia. Spend a night at the Lighthouse Capo-Spartivento, on the southernmost tip of Sardinia, and you may be inclined to pen a classic of your own. Set on an isolated promontory 350 feet above the Mediterranean, Italy’s first and only lighthouse hotel was built in 1856 by the Italian Navy, which still operates its third-story lantern. As for the floors below, owner Alessio Raggio has spent 20 years perfecting the place, filling the four barrel-vaulted guest rooms with Murano-glass chandeliers and enormous circular beds facing the sea. You can book one suite or take over the entire property (including two “apartments,” with ceilings made of glass, for better constellation viewing). Also on hand: three chefs preparing just-caught fish to order, a cistern turned cellar brimming with Sardinian wines, and untamed private beaches. Chia; farocapospartivento.com; doubles from $550, including breakfast.

Photo by Roberto Patti/Courtesy of Faro di Capo-Spartivento

LUCKYRICE: Get Your Asian Food On in NYC!

201104-b-luckyricelogojpgWhen I was growing up in the white-bread hinterlands of Maine, a pu-pu platter at the Golden Fan (a Chinese restaurant) at our local Holiday Inn was as exotic as food got. But, it gave me taste for something more than bologna sandwiches.

Today, my world is a much bigger—and tastier—place, one filled with bánh mì, congee, unagi maki, and bibimbap. I now keep a bottle of Sriracha sauce in my desk drawer, and am pretty sure Momofuku’s Berkshire pork buns are the secret to happiness.

I know I am not alone in this ever-expanding obsession/love/appreciation of Asian cuisines. In the words of Danielle Chang, the savvy founder of the LUCKYRICE Festival: “Asian food is having a moment. But when isn’t it?!”

201104-b-luckyricemktjpgIn its second year, the ultra-popular Asian food festival, LUCKYRICE, runs from May 2-8 in NYC, and includes another exciting tongue-tickling line-up of culinary events—from an Omakase Dinner with Iron Chef Morimoto to a buzzy Night Market in Brooklyn featuring over 50 restaurants serving Asia's best street food. Will I be there? Pho-getaboutit.

You can purchase tickets here. (They’re going fast, but there's still availability for the Grand Feast at the Mandarin Oriental; Opening Cocktails hosted by Opening Ceremony; and the Talk + Taste events with cooking demos.)

And check out my video Q&A with LUCKYRICE Festival visionary Danielle Chang:

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Trend Alert: Hotels Implementing Mobile Concierges

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It’s no secret that the introduction of iPads into the market, just over a year ago, has resulted in the reshaping of how just about every industry imaginable does business. And as I’ve reported before, hotels are no exception to this.

A relatively new trend that I’m seeing on the rise is the use of iPads as personal, portable concierges.

InterContinental’s new Concierge Insider Guides app features more than 120 destinations around the world—all in which one of the hotel chain’s properties can be found, of course.

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Jamaica’s Top New Albums

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Thanks in large part to the reopening of Goldeneye (doubles from $672), this Caribbean isle has been making waves, but you can experience its rich flavor without hopping on a plane. Now on iPods everywhere: the Jolly Boys, whose shuffling mento rhythm and twangy banjo evoke Jamaica’s movie-star days—after all, the band did entertain Errol Flynn there in the 1950’s. The septuagenarians are back this month with Great Expectation (Geejam Recordings), an album of covers (Amy Winehouse’s “Rehab”; Johnny Cash’s “Ring of Fire”) recorded at the Geejam Hotel, near Port Antonio. Listen to their tracks over slow-grilled jerk chicken and ginger beer at Miss Lily’s (132 W. Houston St.; 646/588-5375; dinner for two $76), in New York City; the restaurant was just opened by Paul Salmon, co-owner of Negril’s Rockhouse hotel.

Photo by Anousha Hutton

Rent an Entire Country?

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When it comes to vacation rentals, we’re all familiar with hotels, resorts, villas, yurts, and boats. But what if you had the chance (and budget) to take it to the next level, and rent an entire country? (No, there’s no typo there. And yes, you read that right.)

Airbnb.com, a vacation rental site that lets people rent out their own properties to travelers looking to stray from the typical hotel stay, is really stepping up its game with this offer, which (literally) puts the key to the small country of Liechtenstein (which rests on Austria’s western border) in your hands. But you’ll need to be a high-roller (or at least have a ton of friends willing to pool resources) if you want take advantage; the cost is $70,000 per night.

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Guess Where? City Greenery

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This bucolic scene is in an unexpected location. Can you guess where this is? Let us know if you need a clue.

Log in and leave your guesses below and be sure to check back on Monday for the correct answer.

UPDATE 4/25/11: We thought this one would stump you guys, but T+L community member sherrylachelle actually got this one! This image is of the Washington Mews in New York. This house, which looks like it belongs in the Tuscan countryside, is located right in the middle of Greenwich Village on a privated gated street a few blocks north of Washington Square Park. Originally built as stables, these buildings now house offices and residences for New York University.

Lyndsey Matthews is an online editorial assistant at Travel + Leisure.

Photo courtesy of Travel + Leisure's Photography Contest

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