A picture may speak a thousand words, but a filter is a look into a traveler’s soul. Here’s what you’re projecting with your choice of special effects.
Earlybird To blazes with hard-edged modernity! You yearn for the softly faded era of steamer trunks and hot-air balloons. Jules Verne is your Virgil. Your ideal evening starts with a Delmonico steak and an oyster roast, and ends at the kinetoscope. In your luggage: a hoopskirt and a stovepipe hat.
Phil Winser, restaurateur and co-owner of N.Y.C. hot spots the Fat Radish, the East Pole, and the Leadbelly, reveals his travel essentials—and his favorite destinations.
Sense of Adventure
My father used to organize expeditions for the Royal Geographical Society in London, taking scientists to remote places—caves in Brunei; Oman’s Wahiba Sands. I still use his Globe-Trotter suitcase. It reminds me of old-world travel, when exploration was at the forefront of excitement.
This is about Italy’s secret coast—the other Sardinia. Not the Sardinia of the Aga Khan, yachts, celebrities, oligarchs, and tycoons. Not, in other words, Porto Rotondo, where Italy’s Caviar Left came every summer to populate a brand-new colony built to its high-flying specifications. That vociferous, in-your-face Sardinia reminds me of the film Swept Away, whose director, Lina Wertmüller, was inspired by my aunt, the designer Mariuccia Mandelli, who founded Krizia; her even more formidable sister Giancarla; and their court of influential intellectuals and entrepreneurs. Lying topless in the sun—it was part of the liberation of forceful women nurtured in a traditional society—they conducted lively conversations, mostly about politics, that anyone might have mistaken for fights and that resounded across the wild Mediterranean maquis.
Here’s a Nashville story: we’re tucking in to authentic muhammara and makanek near the front entrance at Epice, a Lebanese bistro in the city’s up-and-coming Twelve South neighborhood, when the actress Hayden Panettiere—who plays the upstart young country singer in the ABC series Nashville—walks in. It’s the lunchtime rush, and the sun-splashed terrace of the restaurant is jammed. Panettiere and her friend wait, in full view of the dining room, for the hostess to return from seating a table. Maybe a minute or two passes, and we start to imagine the moment when the room will erupt in a pandemonium of camera phones and proffered Sharpies. We should have known better. We’d been prepped for this very moment by Matt Bolus, a young chef who moved from Charleston, South Carolina, our hometown, to Nashville several years ago. “Nashville’s like L.A.,” he’d reported back to us, “but with the soul of a small Southern town. I’ll look up from the pass and see Nicole Kidman in the dining room, but people respect that she’s a person, eating at a restaurant. Nashvillians would never beg for an autograph or sneak a selfie.”
If you're passing through Savannah, Georgia or Charleston, South Carolina, you’ll find a pristine wildlife area, with meandering marches, palm trees and lowcountry landscape. You’ll also find Bluffton, where Southern Living’s newest idea house, has all the trimmings of modern luxury and comfort, set on the picturesque sea island.
Thousands of art lovers visit London’s Tate Britain every day to see treasures by notables such as William Blake, John Constable, and David Hockney. This week, they can visit the museum at night as well, thanks to the new website After Dark.
DogVacay, whose app helping travelers find vetted and insured pet sitters in their neighborhoods launched last year, has released an update with some new tricks even old dogs (and their owners) will appreciate.
There’s a reason we use the term advisor to describe the members of our annual A-List, the top travel specialists in the business. These experts offer much more than booking services. First and foremost, says Wendy Perrin, TripAdvisor’s Travel Advocate and founder of WendyPerrin.com, they can help you decide whereto go by walking you through the pros and cons of destinations based on the varying interests (and ages) of the people in your group. Not only that, they’ll deliver insider insights and access. They can tell you how to avoid the crowds at major sights and where the locals eat. They can even pair you with designers and architects who moonlight as walking-tour guides, get a local artist to open his studio to you, and direct you to hidden corners of a city. And they also, crucially, know how to put together a seamless itinerary. I was reminded of this a few months ago when I (travel editor that I am) foolishly tried arranging my own flights in Africa before a safari. After consulting with an advisor late in the game, I learned I was about to book with an airline that was notorious for last-minute, safari-ruining cancellations. Lesson learned.
Aloft Hotels announced its latest hire today: a robot butler named A.L.O. who is now serving guests at the brand’s Cupertino location.
The first major hotel company to introduce a robot for front-of-house service, Aloft plans on using A.L.O. to help (human) staff around the clock, fulfilling chores such as delivering guest amenities and transporting bedding, towels, and other linens between laundry- and guest-rooms. The robot uses internal navigational software to find its way around the hotel and communicates via on-screen prompts.
Call it the HotelTonight of the beauty world: Beautified gives users the power to book last-minute haircuts, manicures, facials, massages, and more at salons and spas around New York—and in the coming months, San Francisco and Los Angeles. Today marks the launch of a completely redesigned app, one with twice as many spas and salons (including Bliss), plus a new fitness category that offers highly coveted classes from Barry’s Bootcamp, Body by Simone, Flywheel, and Physique 57.
Less than a year after debuting a Centurion Lounge at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport—which we profiled in detail here—American Express is at it again, this time in New York LaGuardia's Terminal B. Like its counterparts in Texas and Las Vegas's McCarron International Airport, the 5,000-square-foot space provides all you would expect from a world-class airport lounge, including high-speed Wi-Fi; numerous power outlets; private, noise-buffering work stations; and a food-and-beverage program that goes beyond stale bagels for breakfast and an uninspired wine list.
Skiing in Banff could be more affordable this year, thanks to a just-announced partnership between the famed winter mecca and the Mountain Collective, whose pass grants holders big savings in a traditionally expensive sport.
A longtime winter favorite, Banff’s mountains provide 8,000 acres of ski and snowboard terrain in a UNESCO-recognized wilderness deep in the Canadian Rockies. All three ski areas inside Banff National Park —Lake Louise, Sunshine Village, and Mount Norquay —are joining the Mountain Collective.
Free, reliable Wi-Fi is becoming standard practice at many hotels—but not so for cruise lines, where passengers are expected to pay for the service. In a sign of good things to come for the industry, Regent Seven Seas Cruises will now offer free Internet access in all public spaces and suites for voyages setting sail after January 1, 2015.
The news coming out of West Africa this week as been alarming—to say the least. The latest outbreak of Ebola, which started in Guinea earlier this year, has now spread to Liberia, Nigeria, and Sierra Leone. (There’s even been a suspected Ebola death in Saudi Arabia.) To date, nearly 1,000 people have died of Ebola—a number that will surely increase in the coming weeks as public-health officials struggle to contain the virus. The crisis is such that the World Health Organization has now declared the outbreak “a public health emergency of international concern."
How do you stay healthy while traveling? From fitness tips to advice on scoring the best spa appointments, join our Wellness and Spa Retreats Twitter chat on Tuesday, August 12th from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. EDT. Join along to ask the experts for tips and advice!
T+L's Senior Editor, Travel and Beauty, Jacqueline Gifford, @jacquigiff
If the words "The Catskills" still conjure images of Milton Berle and Henny Youngman trading one-liners—or Jennifer Grey carrying a watermelon across a sweaty dance floor—you haven't been here in a while. While most of the Dirty Dancing–era bungalow colonies and Borscht Belt resorts are gone, a new generation of young innkeepers are opening up shop, luring New York City weekenders eager for a taste of country life.
Time to book last-minute flights to Salt Lake City: The renowned Utah Symphony is running free open-air concerts against the backdrop of five of the state's—and country's—most treasured national parks.
Summer in the city can be stifling, with its sticky-hot subway cars and the odor of leftovers slowly broiling behind every restaurant. For those of us who don’t have a Hamptons-home perched on a sandy stretch of beachfront, it can be hard to slip away from the city for the ultimate, sink-your-toes-in-the-sand summer escape.
Hand sanitizers are no match for the creepy crawlies that have made headlines around the world this week: In New York, a bedbug infestation forced three subway cars out of service. In Paris, rats by the Louvre have tourists screaming. And in India, officials grounded a plane in New Delhi when scores of rats made an appearance.
In Richard Linklater’s new Boyhood—a masterful film documenting twelve years of a boy’s life—little happens but everything seems monumental and emotionally charged. The same could be said for the film’s cinematography by Lee Daniel and Shane F. Kelly. Texas has never looked so good, so colorful, so inviting.
From an Austin dawn seen through the bleary eyes of up-all-night high school kids, to a sparkling swimming hole at Pedernales Falls State Park; from a peyote-enhanced sunset in Big Bend National Park to a family visit to a working ranch, the Lone Star State is observed through a loving and nostalgic lens. There are myriad reasons to see the movie (really), but it almost works as an extended Texas travelogue. The porch of an old stone house, a broad alley running behind small-town shops, the lacquered pine panels of an historic ranch cabin, every frame takes on the kind of atmospheric magic that state tourism boards dream of creating. The kind of magic that makes a person start planning a trip.
Opening shot: a seemingly blissed-out New Yorker drives a lonesome West Texas highway in the cramped cab of a Toyota pickup, the Sir Doug Quintet on the radio…
Ann Shields is a senior digital editor at Travel + Leisure. You can find her on Twitter at @aegisnyc.
Big Bend National Park photo: Steven Stokan, via the T+L Photo Contest
Crystal Cruises, a perennial World’s Best winner, is going where no luxury cruise has gone before: the Northwest Passage. Starting in 2016, the Crystal Serenity (voted best cruise for families) will journey the Arctic wilderness from Anchorage, Alaska to New York City.
Just back from the Hamptons, T+L editorial assistant Katie James reveals her packing musts.
Nearly every Friday in July and August, I find myself toting a weekend bag to work—and rushing like mad to catch the 6 o’clock train en route to the Hamptons. Growing up, I spent summers out East, where I play golf in the morning, hang at the beach club in the afternoon, and eat dinner with family before heading to John Scott’s Surf Shack for a Corona with friends. And while my beauty regimen tends to be low maintenance out at the beach, I never leave home without these essentials:
La Prairie Foam Cleanser: I love feeling squeaky-clean after a day on the beach, where I often leave covered in sand and surf. This La Prairie formula provides a deep cleanse, and natural plant extracts counter balance for a soothing, moisturizing effect that keeps skin hydrated, and never dry. Not to mention the packaging and rosy scent are super luxurious. $80
Today, Foursquare unveils its newly refreshed self to the masses—and we got an early look at the overhauled app. The verdict? Falling closer to Yelp than Facebook, the decidedly less-social app is better suited to travelers than ever before.
On the heels of Priceline’s OpenTable acquisition, Orbitz is getting into the restaurant space—the company yesterday launched Orbitz Rewards Dining, a new program that allows loyalty members to score extra perks for dining at specific restaurants. It’s the result of a partnership with Rewards Network, a Chicago-based company that maintains a database of 11,000 restaurants.