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L.A.'s Arts District

Arts District Los Angeles

Edgy studios and industrial-chic restaurants outnumber palm trees in L.A.’s Arts District, on the southeastern corner of downtown. Here’s how to tap into the new energy.

Follow the Shepard Fairey and Kim West street murals to find the Box, mixed-media star Paul McCarthy’s contemporary exhibition space. Look for an international roster of experimental filmmakers and performance artists. 805 Traction Ave.

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New Travel Survey: Americans Divided on Beach, Plane Etiquette

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A new survey from the Travel Leaders Group reveals that courtesy in the air does not necessarily translate to courtesy once on the ground.

When confronted with limited overhead space for carry-on bags near their assigned seats, only 4.3 percent of survey-takers would stow luggage at the earliest open spot, while nearly 75 percent would wait until they approached their seat.

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IcelandAir Debuts Stunning Safety Video

Icelandair has joined the pack of airlines putting time and energy into their safety videos. (Click here for our slideshow of some of the best.) Unlike the humorous approach taken by the likes of Delta and Virgin America, this almost three-minute-long video is like a love letter to Iceland as a destination, following a traveler camping out to see the Northern lights, hiking across the country’s varied terrain, and kayaking the Fjadrargljufur gorge. Safety procedures are seamlessly drawn on top of the visually beautiful shots.

Brooke Porter
Brooke Porter Katz is an Associate Editor at Travel + Leisure. Follow her on Twitter at @brookeporter1.

New Rosetta Stone App Helps World Cup-Bound Travelers

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Rosetta Stone unveiled a special Portuguese Futebol Edition of its Travel series on Wednesday, targeting lucky Americans heading to Brazil for the Fifa World Cup this month.

The free app, which uses an immersion-based system like all Rosetta Stone products, teaches key soccer vocab (beyond "Gol!"), as well as useful phrases relating to public transportation, restaurants, and attractions in the Games' twelve host cities.

With the Cup just one week away, Brazil-bound travelers better learn quick, or should I say rápido?

The app is available for Android and iOS.

Peter Schlesinger is a research assistant at Travel + Leisure and a member of the Trip Doctor news team. You can find him on Twitter at @pschles08.

 Photo courtesy of Rosetta Stone

 

How Airport Retailers Target Passengers

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Airport retailers know a lot more about their potential customers than you might expect, and they're using that information to target specific shopping demographics, as an article in the Economist details.

Aware when flights arrive and depart, shops behind security alter their selection based on who will be walking by during that "golden hour" before takeoff. At Heathrow, for example, cognac displayed in the morning is geared to passengers on that 9:45 am Barbados flight—who apparently prefer Hennesy and Courvoisier—while afternoon flights to Norway and the US call for cheaper brandies. Likewise, shopkeepers schedule their multilingual staffs based on flight timetables.

As the Economist writes, "Most [passengers] are relatively prosperous; all are briefly at loose ends," and retailers have found that these slightly-crazed, moderately wealthy individuals make great customers.

Peter Schlesinger is a research assistant at Travel + Leisure and a member of the Trip Doctor news team. You can find him on Twitter at @pschles08.

Photo by Kumar Sriskandan / Alamy.

New Miami Hotels for Your Next Stay in South Beach

Miami Hotels: Metropolitan by Como

New hotels are revitalizing Collins Avenue. Here’s where you may be staying on your next trip to South Beach.

The Redbury Hotel South Beach ($$) has quickly become a hit thanks to Lorenzo, chef Tony Mantuano’s Italian spot. Drop in for the wood-fired pizzas and Salvia cocktails—a mix of grappa, pear purée, egg whites, and lemon. Close by is the first U.S. property from Singapore-based Como Hotels & Resorts: the Metropolitan by Como, Miami Beach (pictured; $$). Paola Navone designed the 74 rooms, which have a white-and-pale-mint color scheme; in keeping with the brand’s wellness ethos, there’s an intimate spa. The Setai, Miami Beach ($$$$) just debuted Ocean Suites ($$$$$), a hotel-within-a-hotel concept in the residential tower; airport transfers and breakfast are included. On the horizon: 1 Hotel & Homes South Beach ($$$$), with a farm-to-table restaurant from Tom Colicchio; Faena Hotel Miami Beach (rates not available at press time), aesthetically fine-tuned by Baz Luhrmann and his wife, costume designer Catherine Martin; and Miami Beach Edition (rates not available at press time), which will have sleek interiors by Yabu Pushelberg, two pools, and an ice-skating rink.

Video: Miami Travel

Hotel Pricing Key
$ Less than $200
$$ $200 to $350
$$$ $350 to $500
$$$$ $500 to $1,000
$$$$$ More than $1,000

Appeared as "The United States of Awesome: Miami Heat" in T+L Magazine

Related Links:
Best Places to Eat Like a Local
Best Tacos in America
Best Mexican Restaurants in the U.S.

Photo by Claudia Uribe

New Murals Bring Color to Philadelphia Amtrak Route

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A new set of murals are making a colorfusl splash along a stretch of Amtrak lines in Philadelphia.

As part of the city's Mural Arts Program, German artist Katharina Grosse painted warehouses and abandoned lots visible from the tracks. Around 34,000 rail passengers will see the project every day from their seats on Amtrak's Northeast Corridor route between Philadelphia and New York, as well as from several local commuter lines.

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Daily Transporter: Baltimore's Hon Fest

on the waterfront

Hon Fest, Baltimore’s self-mocking festival of beehive hairdos, leopard-skin prints, and attitude, runs June 14-15. A contestant once won the coveted Best Hon title by playing Take Me Out to the Ballgame on a xylophone made from National Bohemian beer bottles.

See Baltimore in Chefs’ Favorite U.S. Restaurants

Editor’s Picks: Baltimore
America’s Best Baseball Stadiums
America’s Most and Least Attractive People
America’s Coolest Street Art

Ann Shields is a senior digital editor at Travel + Leisure. You can find her on Twitter at @aegisnyc. Get the Daily Transporter newsletter in your in-box.

Photo: nestorneighbor

Google's New Tools Improve The Way We Travel

photopng

“Google, when does my flight leave?” I asked Google Now aloud.

Within seconds, the app accessed my flight reservation and created a travel card, announcing that Virgin Atlantic flight VS45 from London to New York had been delayed 45 minutes.

This is just one way Google is trying to make travel easier for users, along with a handful of other recently unveiled new and updated tools.

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Hilton Launches New Brand: Curio

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Hilton Worldwide this week has announced the launch of a new hotel collection called Curio, a group of four- and five-star boutique properties that will maintain their unique identities while having access to Hilton’s resources, including the company’s robust Hilton HHonors loyalty program. While there are plans for Curio to have a global presence, the first five participating hotels are all stateside, including the highly-anticipated, soon-to-open SLS Las Vegas Hotel & Casino, the Sam Houston Hotel in Houston, the Hotel Alex Johnson in Rapid City, S.D., and the Franklin Hotel in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.

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The Coolest Bus Stops in the World

201406-hd-thrillist-coolest-bus-stopsjpgWaiting for the bus sucks. You're subject to inclement weather. The shelters are like magnets for garbage and bodily waste. And your payoff is... riding on a public bus.

But it's a whole other story in Krumbach, Austria, where passengers wait in some of the most stylish kiosks ever to pave the public transportation route.

Sure, London has impossibly perfect benches on its streets, but this humble Austrian town of just 1,000 residents has taken transport utility to a new height of aesthetics. The local cultural institution, kultur krumbach, commissioned seven internationally acclaimed architects -- Rintala Eggertsson Architects from Norway; Ensamble Studio from Spain; Sou Fujimoto from Japan; Wang Shu from China; Smiljan Radic from Chile; Alexander Brodsky from Russia; and Architecten de Vylder Vinck Taillieu from Belgium -- to design a bus stop, in return for a free vacation in the quaint European region.

SEE MORE AT THRILLIST

Photo by Yuri Palmin

Vacation Rentals Get a Boost with Launch of Villas.com and Funding for Tripping

201405-hd-villa-rentaljpgThe vacation rental industry has officially made it. Booking.com just launched Villas.com, a smart and streamlined site dedicated solely to vacation rentals, with more than 150,000 listings. Meanwhile, Tripping—the self proclaimed “world’s largest search engine for vacation homes and short-term rentals” and the brainchild of Expedia, Travelzoo, and StubHub veterans—just got a new round of funding, rumored to be between $5 and $10 million.

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Social Media 101: How to Get the Most from Tweeting on the Road

For the third year, Travel + Leisure's Social Media in Travel and Tourism (SMITTY) awards is recognizng the brands and companies transforming the industry with their online innovations (think digital concierges and exclusive social giveaways).

To help you leverage the digital boom on your next trip and cash in on the latest social currency, we tapped four platform experts for their outreach strategies and insider tips.  

This week, Twitter’s Head of Travel Mike De Jesus explains how to leverage your social clout  - and reveals the one hashtag you shouldn’t be traveling without.  

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Camping...in New York City

201406-hd-camp-rockawayjpgFirst things first: I don’t do staycations. However, I’ve made exceptions for quirky experiences, like camping in Brooklyn’s Marine Park and checking in to Boatel, an abandoned-boats-turned-hotel/art project in Far Rockaway, Queens.

So I’m intrigued by a new potential project, also out by the beach in Queens: Camp Rockaway. The idea? A handful of safari-style tents with comfy beds, outdoor showers, private fire pits, and hot tubs overlooking Jamaica Bay. 

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How To Get a Free Camera (Or Running Shoes) Tomorrow

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If you own a DSLR and are in New York City, you may be eligible for a free camera upgrade. Tomorrow, Samsung is hosting #DITCHtheDSLR Day, a pop-up event dedicated to their lineup of mirrorless models--and why they're just as powerful as their bulkier counterparts. Head to Times Square between noon and 6pm to take their top-of-the-line NX30 SMART Camera for a spin (with the help of professional photographers, there to take you on photo walks and offer their best shooting tips). If you like what you see, you can trade in your old DSLR and get an NX30--for free. (That's a $999 camera, for those of you keeping track.) But get there early and bring any kit lenses or batteries that came with your dinosaur, as only a limited quantity will be available on a first-come, first-served basis.

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Irresistible USA Travel Twitter Chat on Tuesday, June 3

From favorite beach spots to where to go for camping (or glamping!) join our Irresistible USA Travel Twitter chat this Tuesday, June 3rd from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. EST. We'll be asking experts about hometown dishes to try, favorite shopping destinations, quirky roadside attractions, and more. Join along and ask them for their insider advice!

The Host:

T+L Associate Editor, Brooke Porter Katz, @brookeporter1

The Panelists:

Trip Advisor's Wendy Perrin, @wendyperrin

Travel Channel, @TravelChannel

Foursquare, @foursquare

Amtrak, @Amtrak

Southern Living Magazine, @Southern_Living

Sunset Magazine, @SunsetMag

Fashion Accessories Designer, Rafe New York, @RafeNewYork

NY1's Jamie Stelter, @JamieStelter

Chef Rick Bayless, @Rick_Bayless

Natalie Zfat, @nataliezfat

Vegas.com, @Vegascom

Catharine Hamm, Los Angeles Times: @CatHamm

How does it work?

1. Log in to Twitter before the chat starts at 2pm ET and be sure to follow @TravlandLeisure.

2. Head over to http://twitter.com. Enter the hashtag #TL_Chat into the search bar and select the "All" search option to follow the chat in real time.

3. Remember to always add the hashtag #TL_Chat to your tweets.

4. We'll pulse out some questions for our expert panel to answer, but feel free to post your own responses. Or ask questions of your own! 

All tweets are subject to our social media terms and conditions and may be used in any and all media including editorial. See full social media terms and conditions.

Gabrielle Blitz is Associate Social Media Editor at Travel + Leisure.

Heathrow's T2: A New Model for Airport Design

Video: Update on Heathrow Airport's T2

Intuitive design, natural light: what New York’s JFK can learn from Heathrow’s T2.

You’ve got to give Spanish architect Luis Vidal points for standing before an audience of hardened, JFK-weary New York City travel reporters and declaring, “Terminals today are the cathedrals of the twenty-first century.” Vidal designed the newest addition to London’s Heathrow Airport, the $4 billion Terminal 2, opening this month. T2, also called the Queen’s Terminal, is one of those sunlight-bathed, technologically of-the-moment facilities popping up in airports from San Francisco to Mumbai, restoring a degree of pleasure to air travel. But cathedrals? Vidal argues they were once “gathering places and icons” of every city. And that, he reasons, is what airports are today.

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Daily Transporter: Chilean Mummy

cowgirl in the atacama desert

Last week, a group of Chilean school kids on a field trip uncovered a Chinchorro mummy that may predate Egyptian mummies by 4,000 years. The students were digging near the border with Peru, in an area that had experienced a landslide in April.

See Chile in World’s Coolest Hot Springs

Editor’s Picks: Chile
World’s Prettiest Mountain Towns
Most Romantic Hotel Fireplaces
World’s Strangest Statues

Ann Shields is a senior digital editor at Travel + Leisure. You can find her on Twitter at @aegisnycGet the Daily Transporter newsletter in your in-box.

Photo: hajarali

Bywater, New Orleans: The South's Next Great Neighborhood

Bywater New Orleans: Booty's

This area is growing by the minute, while still preserving its cultural authenticity. Chef Jonathan Lestingi’s New American gastropub, Oxalis (3162 Dauphine St.), serves up terrific whiskey cocktails and shareable plates. Order the Cajun-spiced hot buttered rum popcorn. Baskerville (3000 Royal St.; by appointment), a nonprofit center, offers letterpress printing workshops; the presses themselves are works of art. Tigermen Den (3113 Royal St.) is an ever-evolving event space that hosts everything from art exhibits to weekly Sunday brunches with a ragtime band. Try the Peruvian-style ceviche or Puerto Rican yuca mofongo at Booty’s (pictured; 800 Louisa St.), which serves a global street food menu.

Video: New Orleans Travel

Appeared as “The United States of Awesome: The Bywater, New Orleans” in T+L Magazine

Photo courtesy of Booty's

World's Coolest Beach Bars

201405-hd-thrillist-beach-bars_croppedjpgSorry, mountains. Nice try, lakes. When it comes to the greatest summer vacation destination, nothing beats the beach. Think about it: sun, sand, surf, half-naked people -- throw in strong drinks and laid-back beach bars, and you've got the full monty. But which waterfront watering holes are the best?

SEE THE LIST ON THRILLIST

Photo from Wikimedia Commons

Daily Transporter: New Traditions in Vienna

new public space

The fight over which institution—the Hotel Sacher Wien or Demel Bakery—could claim to serve the “original” sachertorte raged on nine years before the hotel took the cake, but Vienna has embraced some new traditions, too: the Museumsquartier, pictured here, has become a favorite summer hot spot for culture and people-watching.

See sachertorte in Food and Travel: Reader Photos

Editor’s Picks: Vienna
World’s Coolest Observation Decks
World’s Greatest Public Bathrooms
Celebrities’ Favorite Places

Ann Shields is a senior digital editor at Travel + Leisure. You can find her on Twitter at @aegisnyc. Get the Daily Transporter newsletter in your in-box.

Photo: Jessica Sample

Daily Transporter: Golf Death Valley

sand trap

Even if you can’t brag about a low golf score, you can play the lowest-altitude golf course in the world: the links at Death Valley’s Inn at Furnace Creek sit 214 feet below sea level.

See the Inn at Furnace Creek in Great National Park Lodges

Editor’s Picks: Death Valley
America’s Coolest Ghost Towns
World’s Strangest Natural Wonders
Beautiful National Parks: Readers’ Photos

Ann Shields is a senior digital editor at Travel + Leisure.You can find her on Twitter at @aegisnyc. Get the Daily Transporter newsletter in your in-box.

Photo courtesy of T+L Photo Contest

Introducing VIX Valise

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Ok so you’re staying at the Trump Soho NYC on business and you never dreamed you’d have any down time but here you are with a few glorious hours of leisure, expansive pool, a smiling sun and no swimsuit.
 
Brazilian native and bikini lover, Paula Hermanny comes to the rescue with her VIX Valise.  It’s a goody bag of sorts, which contains all you need for a swim and then some. The kit comes to your room in a black and white bold stripe tote. Inside are a black bikini with gold accents, a white caftan (can’t go wrong there), black flip-flops and a towel to go with the color scheme, all in your size.  Truth be told, sunglasses and sunscreen are still required but you’ve brought the sunnies and you can borrow a squeeze of sun prevention from your lounging mate. It’s a pricey indulgence at $468 but no matter you’re on vacation in chic New York.  Even if its only for a few hours.

Mimi LombardoMimi Lombardo is the fashion director at Travel + Leisure.

 

 

Image courtesy of ViX Paula Hermanny.

Crazy Cliff-Diving Competition Comes To Texas

cliff_divingjpgThe first time I visited Acapulco, like any tourist I wanted to see the famous cliff-divers leap from the craggy heights of La Quebrada 135 feet into the foaming Pacific below. I learned a life lesson that day: Never be stupid enough to jump off a cliff like that. You’ll break your neck! Not everyone has learned that lesson, though—in particular, the newest breed of cliff divers now fighting it out in the 2014 Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series. Next stop on the series tour: Possum Kingdom Lake, Texas, 80 miles west of Fort Worth, on June 6-7. 

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Q+A: Nick Brown, Founder of Soludos

201405-hd-nick-brown-selfjpgBeloved by beach-goers and city slickers alike, Soludos espadrilles are designed with a self-proclaimed year-round spirit of summer, no matter your location. Founder Nick Brown is the essence of that—a surf-loving, effortlessly cool globetrotter who’s regularly perusing new and hip destinations. The London native turned New Yorker shares his favorite international hotspots, tells stories of past trips, and divulges his plans for the summer.

Read More

Daily Transporter: Game-Changing Ferris Wheels

aerial shot of ferris wheel

Attractions like the London Eye and this Ferris wheel on Chicago’s Navy Pier have been luring tourists downtown; now, cities like NYC, Orlando, and Dubai are climbing on board. Las Vegas adds its own spin to the phenomenon: you can get married on the new 500-foot High Roller.

See the High Roller in 25 Selfies You Have to Take This Year

Editor’s Picks: Great City Trips
World’s Coolest Ferris Wheels
World’s Coolest New Tourist Attractions
World’s Coolest Tram Rides

Ann Shields is a senior digital editor at Travel + Leisure. You can find her on Twitter at @aegisnyc. Get the Daily Transporter newsletter in your in-box.

Photo courtesy of T+L Photo Contest

Sydney Opera House is All Lit Up During Annual Festival

Every night through June 9, the sails of the iconic Sydney Opera House will be awash in colorful lights and 3D projections as part of Vivid Sydney, the largest light, music, and ideas festival in the Southern Hemisphere. The spectacle was designed by the creative agency 59 Productions, known for their work on the Opening Ceremony of the London Olympic Games.

Brooke Porter
Brooke Porter Katz is an Associate Editor at Travel + Leisure. Follow her on Twitter at @brookeporter1.

Sleep Above the Lions in These Luxe African Treehouses

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It goes without saying that, even as an adult, there are few places to spend the night as cool as way up in a tree. How else do you explain the popularity of these 10 insane treehouse hotels?

But what if you're looking for something more exclusive than your standard arboreal accommodation? This trio of tree huts on the Lion Sands Game Reserve in South Africa offer privacy, luxury, and a 360-degree view of the beautiful, sometimes frightening natural world below.

SEE MORE AT THRILLIST

Photo courtesy of Lion Sands

How to Avoid Tick Bites: A Hiker’s Guide

201405-hd-deer-tickjpgLate spring and early summer is one of the best—and most exhilarating—times of year to take to outdoors for a hike. It’s also peak season for tick bites, especially if you live in the East or Midwest.

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Daily Transporter: French Trains Too Fat?

paris museum

Sleek regional trains ordered by the French government are not quite sleek enough: 1,300 train platforms will have to be slimmed down to allow the wider trains. (The Gare d'Orsay, now the Musée d’Orsay, closed in 1939 when its short platforms didn’t match the length of the newer electric trains.)

See the Musée d’Orsay in World’s Most Beautiful Museums

Editor’s Picks: Paris
World’s Most Amazing Views
World’s Coolest Hotel Bathrooms
Best Instagram Photos of 2013

Ann Shields is a senior digital editor at Travel + Leisure. You can find her on Twitter at @aegisnyc. Get the Daily Transporter newsletter in your in-box.

Photo courtesy of T+L Photo Contest

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