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05.25.2018

Observing an enormous mass of water falling from a mountain or opening a crack in the ground generates a hypnotic vertigo. The grandeur of nature is revealed in many ways, but water has the irresistible charm of eternal movementand watching a water wall a hundred meters tall is always a breathtaking experience. Yet some waterfalls are more impressive than others. Here is a tentative list of some of the most fascinating waterfalls in the world. Howick Falls (South Africa)In the South African Midlands, east of Cape Town, river Umgeni makes a jump of over 100 metersbefore running towards the ocean. The beautiful light and the surrounding greenery add some additional charm to the scenery – not to mention the cultural vibrance of the area which is dotted with artisan workshops leading the way of new South African creativity. Iguazu (Brazil-Argentina)Here is one of the Seven Wonders of the world, so incredibly unique that Eleonor Roosevelt  once supposedly exclaimed “poor Niagara!” at the sight of it. This huge waterfront marking the border between Argentina and Brazil is an uninterrupted sequence of 275 waterfallsalong the course of the Iguazu river, among which is the impressive "Devil's Throat", 150 meters deep and 700 meters long. The Brazilian part is the one with the best view, and it also offers the opportunity to explore the entire Iguazu National Park all around the falls. Victoria Falls (Zambia-Zimbabwe)Well before explorer David Livingstone bumped into them and named them after Queen Victoria in 1855, in the local language the waterfall of the Zambezi River was called Mosi-o-Tunya, "smoking thunder", because of the roar and the huge cloud of water that rise from it, both audible and visible from 40 kilometers away. This is probably the largest waterfall in the world, and without any doubt an incredible natural wonder, magnified by a beautiful scenery of islands, rocks and natural pool. Salto Angel (Venezuela)There are no roads or shortcuts to reach the waterfalls of Mount Auyantepui, in the remote state of Bolivar, southern Venezuela, surrounded by the Amazon rainforest. It takes at least two days of trekking through the National Park of Canaima to be able to see this UNESCO World Heritage Site, falling for almost one kilometerin the rainy season and turning into a cloud of steam when the earth is dry. Mc Way Falls (USA)Big Sur a beautiful coastal strip between San Francisco and Los Angeles protected by rocky stretches that open into small coves only reachable by the local fauna. Inside the Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park, a 24-meter waterfall drops down on a small, pristine beach, only visible from above. Until the mid-1980s, the Mc Way Falls used to drop directly into the ocean, but this unique corner of California still amazes for its power and beauty. Dettifoss (Iceland)In the endless landscapes of north-eastern Iceland, a gap opens up in the land where the Jökulsá á Fjöllum river drops, about 30 kilometers from its outfall. Through its course, the river creates three waterfalls, yet Dettifoss is the most impressive one, with a power of over 200 tons of water per second. Trekking paths run along the river and the canyon walls. Niagara Falls (Canada-USA)In spite of their popularity, the Niagara Falls never fail to amaze, mostly because of the fact that they seem to unexpectedly appear out of nowhere in the heart of densely urbanized area. The effect is undoubtedly surprising. Niagara is the name of the river that connects the vast lakes of Ontario and Erie, as well as of the Canadian town that grew up around the waterfalls only to turn into a sort of local Las Vegas crowded with hotels and casinos. Vinnufossen (Norway)At 860 meters, this is the highest waterfall in Europe, surrounded by an area of ​​rivers and mountains also known as Water Valley, less than 300 kilometers away from the city of Trondheim. Active all year round, the waterfall is fed by Vinnubreen glacier on Mount Vinnufjellet, with a peak in the summer months when its power and reach grow thanks to the higher temperatures. 

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05.23.2018

Venice is a state of mind, some say. Everyone has their own: the postcard-perfect Venice, the picturesque Venice of narrow streets and washing lines, that of the fishermen or vaporettosteamboats sailing at dawn. Yet there is a place in Piazza San Marco that is undeniably and quintessentially Venetian: Gran Caffè Quadri, a 19thcentury icon of local aristocracy. Since 2011, Massimiliano and Raffaele Alajmo, respectively the youngest chef in the world to have received three Michelin stars and the CEO and maître des lieux, have taken over the café and coordinated projects, menus and activities from their headquarters, the restaurant and creative workshop Le Calandrein the province of Padua. The new life of Gran Caffè Quadri, which now includes three different spaces -  Quadrino, the Gran Caffè and the restaurant – began with complex restoration works led by starchitecht Philippe Starck, supported by selected local artisans. Recovering the original stuccoes required very special attentions: the beautiful decorations, dating back to the time of sumptuous receptions in the city’s aristocratic mansions, had to return to their former glory in order to showcase once again the world of Italian beauty and cuisine. As Starck said, "the Gran Caffè was extraordinary, but dormant. Out of respect, love and intelligence, we did not want to change such concentration of mystery, beauty, strangeness and poetry. We simply searched for its wonders and found a wonderland". Every corner of this amazing place is a piece of a story told through enriched stuccos, chandeliers, decorated fabrics, objects and ancient collections exuding a vaguely surrealistic atmospheres, highlighted by the interior décor choices of Philippe Starck and architect Marino Folin, both interested in recovering every trace of the ancient craft work that gave life to the Caffè. And because of its location on the Piazza San Marco, high water is a regular here at the Caffè - hence the unpainted brass table legs: may the water be their guest, take a seat, and leave its marks. The ground floor houses the Quadrino and the Gran Caffé Quadri, both restored by Anna de Spirit and Adriana Spagnol, while the first floor is home the restaurant, bearing the signature style of Mr. Starck with its subtle humor: take a close look at the wall upholstery and you might spot the Alajmo brothers among the ancient faces depicted on the fabric, along with a mix of gondolas, carriages, spaceships, and satellites. As for the cuisine, it blends Italian and Venetian tradition, relying on a daily supply of seasonal ingredients from the local markets. Venice is thus reflected in the food as much as in the interiors, so chances are that dining at the Grand Caffè will add yet another nuance to your own idea of the floating city. 

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05.21.2018

A few kilometers away from Rome there is a place that combines the eternal charm of history, the beauty of Renaissance architecture and the contemporary taste for hybridization between art and design. Aristocratic families, collectors and art lovers have been living in these rooms, and over time they have given shape to their unique charm. The name is La Posta Vecchia and it is located in Palo Laziale, near Ladispoli, on the beautiful stretch of Tyrrhenian coast between Rome and the Argentario. Overlooking the sea, this majestic Renaissance villa was built in 1640 by the Orsini Princes as a place for hosting friends and it has preserved the atmosphere of an exclusive yet welcoming place. From 1693 on, the villa belonged to the Odescalchi family, who abandoned it after the fire that hit it in 1918. In 1960, Jean Paul Getty, founder of Getty Oil Company, a tycoon and an art enthusiast, purchased it and, with the help of critic and art historian Federico Zeri, filled the rooms with ancient tapestries, sculptures, and works of art dating back from the Renaissance to the contemporary era. In the early 1980s, the villa was bought by Roberto Sciò, who revamped its original vocation for hospitality turning into a boutique hotel with 19 rooms and suites filled with objects and works of Italian and European ancient and contemporary art. The Getty Master Suite houses a 17th-century inlaid box depicting the story of King Solomon, as well as a collection of Meissen porcelains hanging on the walls. In the Medici Master Suite, guests can enjoy a seventeenth-century map and a marble table from the same period, while two majestic marble stairs lead to the bathroom. Besides opulence and elegance, La Posta is gifted with natural beauty, offered by the energetic beauty of the sea washing this beautiful stretch of coast that has long been chosen as a place of rest and pleasure. On that note, the renovation commissioned by Jean Paul Getty has brought to light the remains of a Roman villa from the second century BC, preserved inside a small archaeological museum in the basement.To complete the experience, chef Antonio Magliulo awaits guests at the Cesar restaurant on the terrace overlooking the sea, ready to offer a sophisticated menu prepared with vegetables from the hotel's organic vegetable garden. Further amenities include tennis courts, a park, an indoor pool, and a spa.  

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05.18.2018

A trip to London is always a good idea: you will never find the same city you remember from your last visit. This summer promises a huge amount of new sights and hangouts for art, food, fashion, and music enthusiasts. Here are a few addresses you should definitely add to your bucket list. All Points EastSummer gigs definitely abound in London, especially in the most legendary venues such as Wembley or Hide Park. Yet this summer will mark the of definitive consecration of Victoria Park as a major concert venue thanks to the All Points East Festival (May and June), featuring huge names from at least two different generations of rock, pop, and electro artists: LCD Soundsystem, Björk, Lorde, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Beck, Catfish and Bottlemen, The National, Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds.Design MuseumInaugurated in November 2016, the new London Design Museum in High Street Kensington is housed inside the iconic Commonwealth Institute building, a symbol of 1960s British modernism renovated by architect John Pawson. Under the unmistakable parabolic curve of its roof is the largest museum worldwide entirely devoted to design with a collection of 1,000 + pieces from the 20th and 21st centuries.(ph: Ardfern, CC BY-SA 4.0) Fashioned from NatureUntil January 29, 2019, the Victoria & Albert Museum will be hosting an exhibition devoted to sustainable fashion presenting fashionable dress alongside natural history specimens, innovative new fabrics and dyeing processes, inviting visitors to think about the materials of fashion and the sources of their clothes. CornerstoneCornerstone in Hackney Wick is the home of British celebrity TV chef Tom Brown, whose innovative Cornish cuisine focuses mainly on seafood. The kitchen at the center of the restaurant is surrounded by a counter with 11 seats for a very special dinner with a view on the chef’s tricks and secrets, whereas the wooden table made from the reclaimed wood of a 500-year old oak is one of the signature style features of all of Brown’s restaurants.JMW Turner’s homeAfter accurate renovation works,  Joseph Mallord William Turner’s home is finally open for visits. Since it was the British landscape artist himself (1775-1851) who imagined and designed the house where he would spend his last years in Twickenham, a visit to this place is a veritable journey back in time and into the mind of a painter whose work epitomizes the all-British passion for the sky’s ever-changing moods.  

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05.17.2018

Operated by Kyoto-based lingerie-maker Wacoal, Kyō no Ondokoro is a lodging facility obtained from the renovation of a machi-ya, a traditional wooden townhouse, not very far from Nijō Castle and Nishijin, Kyoto’s famed weaving district. There could hardly be a better place to stay to truly experience the culture of the town. Akira Minagawa, the founder and designer of the brand Minä Perhonen, took over the renovation process, from naming to concept, all through logo design, and turned the 90-year-old machi-yainto something more than just an accommodation. Kyō no Ondokoro offers an experience at the heart of the Kyoto community. Located near Heian Shrine, Kyō no Ondokoro is the first in a row of five townhouses that will open during 2018, at a short distance from museums and other places of interest. Besides the lovely kitchen, with beautifully-designed tableware and the charming floral furniture, the townhouse will not provide you the perks of a luxury hotel or ryokan. However, you will be offered the opportunity to spend your holiday your own way, at your own pace. You can make a reservation online and then check in at the front desk of Kyō no Ondokoro, on the ground floor of Wacoal Shin-Kyoto Building, just opposite Kyoto Station’s Hachijō. Whether it is your first time in Kyoto or your nth, a stay in a machi-yawill provide you with an unforgettable experience.  

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05.16.2018

A historic newsstand in Ortona, Italy, a dream shared by a father and a son, and a sudden infatuation for Chile. These are the main elements of a unique story, that of a small independent publishing house named Edicola Ediciones (edicola is Italian for newsstand) established in 2013 between Italy and Chile, building a virtual bridge made of books between two not-so-distant worlds, albeit divided by two different languages, an Ocean and a continent. A story that sounds like a novel itself, and whose main characters are Paolo Primavera and Alice Rifelli, a couple of young and brave publishers, partners in work and in life. Paolo and Alice currently live and work between Ortona, the publishing house’s Italian headquarters, Ferrara, Alice’s hometown, and Santiago de Chile.We spoke to them to learn more about this extraordinary enterprise. Why Chile?Paolo: Back when I was working as a photographer, I traveled all across Chile. That experience soon became a book and filled me with the desire to return - which I did by starting a couple of collaborations with local newspapers and teaching at a university for four years. Meanwhile, I also enrolled in a Master’s degree in Publishing. Then one day I got a call: my father was dying. I left everything and went back home.My father had been running a newsstand that has belonged to my family for over a century. One day, when we were sitting in the kiosk, we had spoken of how there was a lot of unnecessary publications among all that we sold, and that we should have opened our own publishing house specializing in our respective passions - photography and handmade wooden furniture.The idea had been stuck in my head ever since. So when my dad died, I returned to Chile to finish the Master and founded Edicola, our publishing house, building a bridge between Chilean and Italian culture through translation and proposing Spanish titles in Italy and vice versa. How is the Chilean independent publishing scene?Alice: The country is currently experiencing a cultural fervor similar to that blossoming during the Allende government. Although the Chilean democracy is still very fragile, thirty years after the end of the dictatorship people have gone back to experimenting, questioning and gathering. The Government massively invests in culture and the results are under our eyes.Paolo: In Chile there is much more collaboration among publishers than in Italy. Four years ago, we founded a publishers’ cooperative, La Furia. We started out in seven, and today we are more than forty. In the meantime, collaborating with other organizations, we have developed and launched a Chilean book internationalization program, and participated in the drafting of the new book's law. How do you choose your authors?Alice: There are several ways to choose a book. The most obvious one is to fall in love with it as a reader. But we also feel a strong urge to follow the voice of our authors through different books and to make their new projects come true. And sometimes it’s all about building a puzzle where every book is a piece that you hope will fit in the right place at the right time. While "still believing in paper", Edicola also publishes e-books. Paolo and Alice: Ever since the beginning, we opted for publishing both the paper and the digital format. We believe in both. We are not interested in the useless diatribe over which of the two supports is never better. Books are products too, and if going out at night and writing them on the walls is what it takes to sell them (and let people read them), we are ready to do it. E-books are simply another style of publishing, with its obvious advantages both the reader and the publisher.As for our paper books, we have tried to make them as "portable" as possible: most of the have approximately the same size as an e-reader. How do Chileans see the Italian culture and authors?Paolo: They are very interested in our art, culture, and literature. Our history has earned us a lot of respect, even if the usual clichés are still a thing. In the field of literature, all the great authors like Calvino, Pavese, Pasolini and Natalia Ginzburg are quite well-known. At Edicola, we have done and will continue to do our part by translating contemporary Italian authors. We recently published our first classic: The Night by poet Dino Campana, translated by Antonio Nazzaro. What made you fall in love with Chile?Alice: In the beginning I had a bit some trouble with avocados and earthquakes. Over the last three years, I got used to both. I learned how to eat avocados like a local: perfectly ripe, with only a drizzle of olive oil and a pinch of salt on toast, or in a salad. Earthquakes are obviously no joke, but Chilean buildings are safe and designed to withstand a continually shaking ground. And it is precisely this overpowering and yet generous nature that made me fall in love with Chile

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05.14.2018

Design, food, and flowers: in the heart of SoHo, NYC, there is a space that combines all the ingredients that make a home unique. They have been chosen and, in some cases, created by designers Robin Standefer and Stephen Alesch, who founded Guild to fulfil a long-time dream after a long career that started in the Hollywood studios and continued in New York with Roman and Williams Buildings and Interiors studio: gathering all the best of objects they created over the years in a single space, which means bringing together stories, people and experiences and making them available. Guild is a space for the senses that tells about different passions combined with a desire for beauty. The Founding Collection designed by Standefer and Alesch is a mix of design objects, furniture pieces, lights and craft accessories selected from all over the world. The style of the creative duo influences every element with its peculiar approach made of eclecticism and irreverence, emerging from the constant search for what they love. How do they do this? They celebrate style by emphasizing its own contradictions, by mixing different period pieces to create cross references and interpreting the evolution of style as a continuous search for contemporary answers to eternal human problems. By maintaining a harmonious unity with a multifaceted surface. And this applies to everything at Guild. La Mercerie Café, home to Chef Marie-Aude Rose, is a French café within Guild where everything comes from the balance between tradition and avant-garde. Flowers and greenery, yet another great passion of Robin Standefer’s and Stephen Alesch’s, find their own space in the much-loved wild floral compositions by Emily Thompson.Visiting Guild truly is an experience that involves and inspires all the senses. It is an invitation to explore the best of what has built the happiness of its founders over the years  and finding whatever makes you happy in your own home: a taste, an object, a scent, a color, or a sound. 

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05.10.2018

The Alchemist will be soon reopening in its new location: the Refshaleøen peninsula alongside other culinary luminaries like Noma and Amass. These restaurants are New Nordic icons - embracing native ingredients and traditional practices in a modern way, resulting in impeccable fine dining experiences. While fine dining does contain an experimental element, the term avant-garde probably doesn’t come to mind when thinking about New Nordic cuisine. While the shocking dishes (more on this later) can be difficult to look past, The Alchemist does have the underpinnings of the New Nordic spirit. From insects to organs (that would otherwise likely have gone to waste), the surprise menu sounds completely bizarre out of context, but is actually very refined. Dining at The Alchemist consists of 45 courses falling into 8 different categories (fruit and vegetables, seafood, fish, guts, meat, cheese, dessert, and petit four). Yes, there is a method behind the madness: each of the 45 courses is inspired by the 45 elements that alchemists would use when trying to produce gold. Even though the restaurant is making a statement with their food, taste always comes first. As a molecular gastronomist, Head Chef Rasmus Munk expertly experiments with all kinds of foods that he finds interesting, like part of animals that would ordinarily be thrown away. Woodlice, meal worms, chicken feet, and ants may very well also make an appearance, but in the most thoughtful way. The dishes aren’t all so off putting, though. There are plenty of edible flowers, edible paints and a canvas to get your Bob Ross on, fresh vegetables, citrus and, (thank goodness), chocolate and mini donuts, to set your mind at ease. To be honest, it’s not so much the ingredients that are bothersome as it is the presentation, but this is all part of the fun- when was the last time you had a meal that challenged your palate and your mind? The menu changes often and utilizes classic Nordic ingredients such as turbot, langoustine and raw danish milk, just to name a few. Rasmus Munk calls his approach “Holistic Cuisine” as the focus is on all aspects of the meal. Think of the meal as a show and each of the categories as acts. But as you can see, the ethos of the meal extends beyond the food itself. Rasmus’s personal favorite dish is Ashtray which was inspired by his late grandmother’s favorite food: a Danish dish called Burning Love (mashed potatoes, bacon and generous amounts of butter). Rasmus’s version is very intricate: king crab, potato foam, and a few other chemistry lab adapted vegetables that have been styled to look like a pile of cigarette ash. In his own words, Rasmus says, “the Ashtray looks like an ashtray and tastes like Burning Love. It’s comfort food telling you to stay off the cigarettes - I love that!” Calling this level of detail a labor of love is an understatement. Rasmus Munk feels that The Alchemist has only realized 10% of its potential at its old location in Århusgade. How can they sustain so many involved and intricate dishes as they expand into a 10,000 square foot location? Munk says “I simply love what I do, and I find immense pleasure in giving guests a unique culinary experience every single night.” Completely absorbing, though provoking, and thoughtfully created by an innovative molecular chef with experience working at Noma, Geranium, and The Fat Duck who will tell you stories about his life and travels while you dine- The Alchemist will be one of the most memorable (and delicious) experiences of your life. 

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Ever since it opened its first boutique on Chiltern Street back in 2010, Trunk Clothiers has set a new standard for independent menswear stores, both on the London scene and internationally. More a refined curator of men’s clothing than your average fashion retailer, Trunk stands out for its accurate selection of brands, balanced style mix, and the warm and sophisticated atmosphere of its boutiques, purposely located away from the most crowded shopping streets Mats Klingberg, a Sweden-born former financier with a genuine passion for fashion, style, and everything beautiful, is the talented guy behind this enterprise. We talked to him to learn more about his background, the genesis of the Trunk concept and the recently launched Trunk Clothiers boutique in ZürichSJ: How and why did you get into the fashion retail business? Tell us a bit about your love for fashion and when it was born.MK: I’ve loved beautiful things as long as I can remember - beautiful buildings, interiors, art, views, and of course also clothing. My mother’s father was always very well dressed and I don’t remember seeing him many times without wearing a tie, so I think he influenced me quite a lot although I didn’t realise it at the time.T-shirts and polo shirts was one of my earlier passions and when I lived in Brazil as a ten year old I remember having lots of Ocean Pacific t-shirts and Lacoste polo shirts. After that I moved on to sweaters and I still today tend to have way many more sweaters than I need.When I was in Business School in Sweden several of my friends that I got to know when I lived in Paris just before starting business school were studying fashion in New York, so I decided to spend one semester in New York studying fashion merchandising management at FIT. After business school I worked briefly at Nordiska Kompaniet, the main department store in Stockholm and then for Giorgio Armani before venturing in to financial services and various marketing and communication roles. I then ended up in London with American Express in Global marketing looking after all the fashion brands like Louis Vuitton, Giorgio Armani, Ermenegildo Zegna, Gucci, Prada, Burberry, Dunhill, Ralph Lauren, etc. etc.After five years at American Express, I thought it was time to try something on my own. While there was no shortage of menswear shops in London I thought there was room for something smaller and more intimate, where the man I had in mind would be able to find a nice mix of clothes from different parts of the world, smart to casual, in a shop that was a bit away from the main shopping streets and that felt warm and welcoming. Trunk was born with lots of inspiration being take from primarily Japan and Italy.  SJ: What is it that distinguishes Trunk London from the local independent menswear stores and how did you come up with that formula?MK: There are quite a few good independent menswear stores in London and what I think (and hope our customers agree with) sets Trunk apart is our excellent customer service, warm and welcoming atmosphere and selection of clothes ranging from casual to smart. This is what I thought was missing in London and therefore want Trunk to be all about. SJ: You recently expanded from London to the world, including Lane Crawford in Hong Kong. Why did you choose Zürich as your latest location?MK: With Lane Crawford we took our first baby steps outside London, so it’s very exciting to now be opening our first standalone shop outside London in Zürich. I used to live and study in Switzerland many years ago, so it feels a bit like coming home. People from all over the world live in Zurich, so while it’s a very different city from London, there a many similar minded people living here. SJ: Can you tell us about the new Zürich store and the vibe of the area you selected for Trunk?MK: Like Marylebone in London, we want to go with a quieter area that felt more residential than retail. Wanted it to be a destination. Seefeld is right next to the lake and has always been one of my favourite areas and ticked all the boxes of what I was looking for.  SJ: What do you personally love about Zürich?MK: Zürich and London are both very international, beautiful and dynamic cities when it comes to the people living there and what’s on offer in terms of restaurants, retail and more. Lots of people still think of Zürich as a city full of banks only, but this is far from true. Lake Zürich is at the heart of it all (if you ask me) and then up and around it you have different areas similar to the areas you have in London. Kreis 1 in Zürich is similar to Mayfair in London, Kreis 4 is similar to Shoreditch and Kreis 8, where Seefeld and Trunk are in Zürich, are similar to Marylebone where Trunk is in London.What I particularly love about Zürich is the ease of travelling in and out of the city, the closeness to nature, the good restaurants and the lake! Can’t think of a nicer way to start the day than going for a run and then jumping in the lake. SJ: Trunk was quite a breath of fresh air on the London scene, and you definitely are an innovator when it comes to store concepts. How do you think stores will change in the near future?MK: Retail is evolving all the time and while there’s been a very clear and strong trend towards digital for a long time you’ve now also started seeing a move to brick and mortar from pure online retailers, so I think we’ll be seeing more of a mix of both going forward. To what degree will vary across the board, and in the space Trunk is playing in I believe personal interaction will remain essential to create the best possible customer experience. Commodities work perfectly in a digital environment, but in order to build a strong relationship with a customer and be able to sell new brands and unique pieces that you have to try on in order to appreciate, the personal interaction and physical space is very important.For sure, you will start seeing more digital assistants in the shops, where you can get more information about the products you see in front of you and also what’s not on the shop floor, but in the stockroom or in a nearby warehouse and available to order in if requested. If done well, the personal, physical and digital will blend together in a seamless way enhancing the overall customer experience. SJ: Finally, we would love to know something about yourself and the way you dress.How would you define your style?MK: Effortlessly elegant. I like to have a wardrobe with items ranging from very casual to fairly smart and that can easily be combined in different ways. SJ: Is there any particular rule that you go by when picking, mixing and matching pieces?MK: Keep it simple, so not too many colours or patterns at the same time. Navy, beige and grey are my main colours. And basically no patternsSJ: What should never be missing in a man’s wardrobe?MK: A good navy jacket. SJ: What’s your idea of the modern gentleman?MK: Someone that sets himself high standards when it comes to everything in life and then lives by them, treating everyone around him in the most respectful way.   MATS’ RECOMMENDATIONSWhen in Zürich..ShopTrunk on Dufourstrasse, 90 Limited Stock in Old Town for nice objects.Neumarkt 17 for beautiful furniture Eat & DrinkKronenhalle for great classic dishes and their incredible art collection (and the bar next door)Cantinetta Antinori for good ItalianSprüngli on Paradeplatz for breakfast or lunch or some nice chocolatesSternen Grill for a good sausageRimini Bar for evening drinks by the riverLa Stanza for a good coffee EnjoyBadi Utoquai for a dip anytime of the day. When in London…ShopTrunk on 8 and 34 Chiltern StreetDaunt Books, Mats’ favourite bookshop in the worldThe New Craftsmen for nice objects made in England.Perfumer H for beautiful fragrances in laboratory on site.Another Country for nice furniture Eat & DrinkThe Chiltern Firehouse for cocktails and dinner Monocle Café for good coffee.Dinings for Japanese with a subtle twistLurra for a bit of charcoal grilled piece of meat or fish ‘Basque’ styleRiver Café for ItalianGranger & Co for breakfast, lunch or dinner by Bill Granger from Australia 

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"In architecture, what we create for private use becomes the structure of public space", saya Paolo Baratta, president of the Architecture Biennale, to explain the concept behind Freespace, the theme of the 16th International Architecture Exhibition to be held in Venice, between the Arsenale Gardens and the streets, from May 26th to November 25th. Freespace is the public space generated by any architectural work, no matter who the client is: every thought and action revolving around space changes the light, the proportions and the balances, interacting with our own view. According to curators Yvonne Farrell and Shelley McNamara, founders of Grafton Architects studio in Dublin (b.1977) and awarded with the Silver Lion at the 2012 Architecture Biennale, Freespace has the aim of promoting the desire for architecture as a conscious thought on space, and the role of every architectural element in the choreography of everyone's daily life. The Freespace manifesto will gather 71 participants from 63 countries to describe their idea of ​​free and liminal space between architectural object sand every event, individual, and point of view that surrounds them. Studios and professionals from very different backgrounds will bring to the Arsenale an exceptional variety of points of view, regenerating architectural culture through practice. The tiled concrete seat designed by Jørn Utzon and placed at the entrance of Can Lis in Mallorca is one of the examples that the curators mention to explain how an architectural object can be welcoming: modeled on the human body, it provides comfort and well-being, turning into an invitation to share. Something similar can be found at the entrance to Via Quadronno, 24, in Milan, where architect Angelo Mangiarotti designed a slightly sloping corridor with a seat on the threshold, inviting guests to stop. Finally, Lina Bo Bardi added a public belvedere to the project of the Museum of Modern Art in São Paulo, mixing public and private spaces in a way that reminds of the stone seats on the facade of Palazzo Medici Riccardi in Florence, conveying power and hopsitality at the same time. The Biennale will delve into the Freespace theme through the Meetings on Architecture, involving the people behind the exhibition, and other events aimed at stressing how the educational aspect is in perfect harmony with the focus on generosity, openness, and reception that will be the trait d’union among all the selected and exhibited works.  

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05.04.2018

There is a new landmark in Shoreditch that looks like it has landed there from another dimension. Sitting along Willow Street, just off the ever-busy Great Eastern Street and in the art of London’s artistic quarter, the brand new Nobu Hotel Shoreditch is the brainchild of a remarkable team including Academy Award winning actor, Robert De Niro, film producer, Meir Teper, Australian businessman, James Packer, and of course Chef Nobu Matsuhisa. Conceived as a fun-luxury experience destination, this huge steel-and-concrete buildingdesigned by Ron Arad Architects and Ben Adams Architects to marry the raw creative energy of the location with Nobu’s values of simplicity houses a 143-bedroom hotel, a beautiful spa and a 240-cover bar and restaurant. Giving back to the local area, Nobu Hotel Shoreditch will be opening its stunning pocket garden, creating a public space between the vibrant streets and the calmness of the hotel, offering an oasis in the heart of East London. The roomsEach of the guest rooms has been meticulously designed to embrace the property’s distinctive architecture with Japanese aesthetic subtleties. The suites overlooking the courtyard and pocket garden from their own private balconies are particularly luxurious. The largest suite is the exclusive Nobu Suite, featuring two private balconies with views across London’s iconic skyline, a dining area, a lounge, and a bathtub. The restaurantKnown around the world, Nobu cuisine is an innovative interpretation of Japanese, Peruvian and other South American elements pioneered by Chef Nobu Matsuhisa and influenced by his years of studying Japanese cuisine in Tokyo and his extensive travels. The Nobu Shoreditch menu features many of Nobu’s timeless dishes, such as Black Cod Miso and Yellowtail Sashimi with Jalapeno, as well as plates inspired by the creativity and vibrancy of the local area. Reached via a grand staircase, the 240-seat restaurant is bathed in natural light from the five-metre tall glass doors leading out to the charming Nobu Terrace. The spaFocusing on the ideas of balance and mindfulness, the spa offers a range of relaxation, fitness, wellness and beauty services including Yoga classes, facials, massages and body treatments. Amenities include ‘his’ and ‘hers’ steam room facilities and private single or double treatment rooms. 

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05.03.2018

He is a TV chef, a cooking book author and a cooking teacher, but above all an ambassador of Italian cuisine in the Far East. Through Fine Trattoria, Paolo De Maria has brought authentic Italian gastronomy to Seoul, setting it free it from the many stereotypes and pale imitations that typically surround it outside Italy, an enterprise that won him the prestigious Ospitalità Italiana quality seal. Today, Paolo is the most popular Italian chef in South Korea and a honorary Korean citizen, with his own cooking shows and a best-selling pasta cookbook. We asked him about the secrets of his own success and the popularity of his restaurant. What are the most popular Italian dishes in Korea?PDM: Our cuisine is still very stereotyped here, so the main Italian dishes among Koreans would be pizza and pasta. Yet in my restaurant I try to offer 360-degree authentic Italian cuisine and Korean customers truly seem to appreciate this. With the support of my Italian staff, I provide them with all the basic information, in an attempt to spread a true knowledge of our food culture. I believe this strategy also repays economically, eventually, but of course it takes time - which is why it is so rarely adopted by Italian restaurateurs. Is there a classic Italian dish that, in your opinion, sums up all the best features of our cuisine in terms of flavors, ingredients and techniques?PDM: There’s plenty of emblematic dishes, but if I were to choose one in particular it would be fresh pasta in general. In my restaurant, I serve exclusively homemade fresh pasta. A properly made Lasagna (of which we have many different recipes in Italy) could be a truly exemplary dish of our national cuisine. Is there any aspect of the Korean food tradition that fascinates you and has somehow influenced your own cuisine?PDM: Professionally, I only deal with Italian cuisine, without any foreign influence. But of course I am personally interested in other national cuisines, especially Indian, Thai, Japanese and even Korean cuisine. What I find particularly intriguing in Korean gastronomy is traditional fermentation, and therefore all those foods such as soy sauce, soy paste and kimchi that, with the use of salt and through time, undergo an organoleptic metamorphosis.I also love the so-called "Royal Cuisine", which dates back to the time of the Korean monarchy and is made up of exquisitely delicate and meticulously prepared dishes. How is life in Seoul for an Italian expat?PDM: Seoul is a huge and exciting city, offering everything anyone might need, regardless of their individual interests. Personally, as an amateur cyclist I am ceaselessly impressed by the efficiency and the quality of its bike lanes, allowing you to ride your bike for hundreds of miles in and out of town, with an endless choice of different routes to pick among. 

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05.03.2018

Near Tokyo’s Omotesando, surrounded by a 17,000m² garden, stands the Nezu Museum.The museum houses the private collection of pre-modern Japanese and East Asian art of KaichirōNezu, a businessman who served as the president of Tobu Railway. Born in Yamanashi Prefecture in 1860, Kaichirōhad a keen interest in antique art from a very young age, which he never lost after he moved to Tokyo, where he became a successful businessman, a politician and a philantropist. In the capital, he was very active in collecting pieces of art and he also took on tea ceremony. Kaichirō did not see his collection as a private treasure trove, but rather a joy to be sharedwith the general public.  After Kaichirō’s sudden death, his son and heir Kaichirō II established a foundation to preserve the collection in 1940. The following year, he opened the Nezu Museum in its current location, which used to be the Nezu family residence. A great part of it, including the galleries, garden, and teahouse, were lost to fire in 1945 during World War II, but the museum was renovated in 1954 and expanded twice, firstly in 1964 and secondly in 1991, to commemorate the 50thanniversary of its founding. Opened in 2009, the new building was designed by Kengo Kuma– one of Japan’s most representative architects – and consists of two storeys above the ground and one below, covered by a large roof. The museum’s collection, which was quite large at its start, holding 4,642 works, has been expanded to approximately 7,400 pieces. These include seven National Treasures, 87 Important Cultural Properties, and 94 Important Art Objects. Centred around the Japanese and East Asian antiquities collected by Kaichirō, the exhibition includes the beautiful tea wareshe accumulated under the tea name of “Seizan”, and works by painter Ogata Kōrin and his brother, potter Ogata Kenzan. Within the large garden stand four tearooms and Nezucafé, an open-style café surrounded by glass on three sides, where visitors can sit and relax, enjoying their drink and the view. 

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05.02.2018

Many have learned about Patagonia through the accounts of Bruce Chatwin, who told the story of a journey through two countries, many stories, and his own roots.Only a few, however, are fortunate enough to see Patagonia through their own eyes, especially having the opportunity to sleep immersed in the incredible nature of Torres del Paine, in southern Chile, a magnificent landscape of forests, granite peaks, glaciers, lakes, rivers and pampas. A UNESCO heritage site and a protected area, Torres del Paine is crossed by hiking trails and equipped for many outdoor activities such as kayaking and cycling, and it is the backdrop to one of the most beautiful eco-resorts in the world, the first geodetic hotel ever, consisting in dome-shaped housing units literally surrounded by beauty. EcoCamp Patagonia was born in 2001 at the behest of two Chilean engineers, Yerko Ivelic and Javier Lopez, inspired by the lifestyle of the Kaweskar, a local native tribe, and their “leave no trace” lifestyles and houses, crafting state-of-the-art geodesic domes that run of solar and hydraulic energy, are fully eco-friendly, and allow guests an immersion with their surroundings that other hotels lack.   The ‘cottages’ are far from basic: from the standard room to the suite, the interiors are beautiful and perfectly comfortable. But the real luxury, here, is to leave for a trek from the heart of the Park, in the company of expert guides and with the certainty that you will be having an immersive experience in the presence of nature, only to return to your room and fall asleep looking at the stars shining against a perfectly dark sky as you lie on your bed. At EcoCamp there are also convivial moments, to be enjoyed at the communal table for breakfast or dinner, in the library, at the cocktail bar or browsing among the local craft shops.Ready to leave? Take a look at the upcoming tours.  

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In Osnago, between Milan and the Alps, there is a house with a courtyard, a vegetable garden, and a bunch of grazing chickens. It is the home of Alberto Casiraghy ​​and PulcinoElefante, a small publishing house specializing in little art books created out of love for typography, words, and human beings. Everything revolves around the Super Audax Nebiolo monotype machine that sits in the heart of the house and prints Bodoni characters from wood-case typographic cliches carved by Adriano Porazzi. Objects of art and culture, all the small books printed by Alberto Casiraghy ​​ have the same structure: two sheets of fine ivory colored hahnmuehle paper produced in Germany, folded and sewn by hand on the back for a total of 8 pages. Each book is home to words that freely follow the train of thought and become aphorisms, poems, small and yet mind-blowing reflections. The name of the publishing house, PulcinoElefante (literally “the chick and the elephant”) is inspired by a nursery rhyme by Gianni Rodari, an Italian poet who wrote several children’s books using language with a freedom that only rarely accessible to grown-ups. Alberto Casiraghy ​​embraces this freedom and pours it into his small artist's books, putting it at the service of his daily encounters with poets, philosophers, and artists like Maurizio Cattelan, Emilio Isgrò, Franco Loi, Fernanda Pivano and, above all, Alda Merini, Milan’s late and much loved poet, whose human and artistic partnership with Alberto Casiraghy ​​lasted for many years. From the aphorisms, the images and the objects born out of these encounters Alberto has created his beautiful limited edition books (reproduced in no more than 40 specimens each), that he sells at the symbolic price of 20 euros: a choice of independence and accessibility according to which books and art objects are meant to travel around the world conveying energies and thoughts. Palazzo delle Stelline in Milan recently housed a major solo exhibition of Casiraghy, ​ honoring a career that has seen Alberto spread his poetics in his own discreet and joyful way to the world of Italian contemporary art through frequent exhibitions, often held at the Milanese art gallery Gli Eroici Furori owned by Silvia Agliotti, gallery owner as well as Casiraghy’s friend and muse. In 2016, film director Silvio Soldini cast him as the protagonist of the documentary The river is always right alongside pianist Josef Weiss, focusing on the beauty and honesty of a refined and deeply human idea of ​​ art. 

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04.27.2018

 Bento has become a common word worldwide. In Japan, the country where bentos were first conceived, the choice has been diversified to serve all purposes, from lunch breaks to train rides. Bentos can have various decorations, but perhaps the most representative of the Japanese popular culture is the kyaraben, depicting characters from Japanese anime, manga and videogames. Bento boxes are extremely eco-friendly, since they do not require any use of plastic wrap for storing or plates for serving, and can be easily washed and reused. Some are made of natural materials, so they can be disposed of or burnt, without affecting the environment. Opening the lid provides an extra thrill to an otherwise ordinary packed meal. Left-overs are not mere left-overs when duly arranged into a bento box. Recently, an increasing number of long-established restaurants have taken on delivering lunch boxes prepared under the supervision of the most renowned chefs. Bento is a must when travelling by shinkansen. If you are taking a bullet train from Tokyo Station, you will be spoilt for choice when it comes to lunch boxes, inside and around the station. Take a one-minute walk to Daimaru Tokyo, the large department store, a true bento paradise. Since we certainly do not want you to miss your train while choosing, here are a few recommendations. Nadaman: ŌgiWhen it comes to bentos, Nadaman has been an institution in Japan ever since its foundation in 1831. Prepared with the freshest seasonal ingredients, which include rice, fish, meat, pickles, eggs, vegetables and an umeboshi salted plum, makunouchi is an elegant, well-balanced and delicious lunch box.  TakimotoTakimoto is renowned for its seafood bentos. If you are a seafood lover, you should really try the luxurious millefeuille, with alternating layers of rice, raw fish and roe. Meat Yazawa and Blacows Take-Out StationThe long queues are a giveaway of the popularity enjoyed by this bento shop located in Gotanda. Here you can buy a lunch box with Kuroge beef hamburg steaks cooked on the spot and laid out on a layer of white rice. Kiyōken: Shumai BentoShumai Bento has been enormously popular since its first appearance in 1954 at Kiyōken, the most popular shumai restaurant in Yokohama. In addition to shumai dumplings, the box contains teriyaki grilled tuna, crispy fried chicken and tamagoyaki-style omelette, in an enticing and colourful pattern. Jiraiya: TenmusuTenmusu is a Nagoya speciality consisting in rice balls wrapped up in nori seaweed and usually filled with deep-fried shrimp. Tenmusu is customarily wrapped in sheaths of natural bamboo, which absorb excess water and are environmentally friendly.  

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04.23.2018

Southern France is almost inevitably a synonym for the Côte D’Azur and its crowded beaches and millionaire hangouts in Cannes, Nice, and Saint-Tropez. Yet the western part of the Southern French coast has a lot to offer, too, and without all the crowds. Beloved by the group of French painters known as Les Fauves, who drew inspiration from its red rocks and warm Mediterranean light at the beginning of the 20th century, the Côte Vermeille sits between the Pyrénées and the Mediterranean sea from Argelès-sur-Mer to Cap Cèrbere, on the Spanish border. Neither France nor Spain, this Catalunian French corner has a rocky coastline broken by sandy beaches, hills covered in vineyards sloping towards the sea and dotted with the ruins of ancient castles, a delicious cuisine and some truly magnificent landscapes. In other words, the perfect mix for those who love enjoy a quiet, relaxed vacation surrounded by beauty and local culture. Argelès-sur-MerA long sandy beach. Restaurants, cafes and beach clubs overlooking a turquoise sea. Stores selling bathing suits and buckets & spades. Argèles is as close to a classic family seaside resort as you can get on the Côte Vermeille. But there is more to it: castles, natural preserves, and a beautiful cathedral housing and ancient churches. Collioure Simply France’s most painted fishing village, which inspired Matisse and the Fauves with its cosy harbour, the unmistakable bell tower/lighthouse with the pink top, the castle, and the colorful houses with ochre roofs. In Colllioure you can still stay at the Hôtel-Restaurant les Templiers, a favourite of artists of the likes of Picasso, Matisse, and Chagall, now also housing a museum. To plunge into the town’s artistic past, we recommend that you walk along the Chemin du Fauvisme, a walking path that runs through the village’s most depicted views and landscapes, marked by the reproduction of the paintings they inspired. Port VendresIf you’re into water sports, be it surfing, snorkeling or scuba diving, this pretty and historic harbor city has everything you need. Also, do not miss the Saturday morning market, packed with colorful and fragrant Catalan spices and other local delicacies. Banyuls-sur-Mer The Côte Vermeille is also a very renowned wine region, with beautiful hills covered in vineyards and sloping towards the sea. Banyuls is surrounded by vineyards and dotted with wineries where you can taste and buy some pretty unique sweet natural local wines - Banyuls, Banyuls Grand Cru, and Collioure – paired with foie gras and blue cheese. Cerbère The last stop before the Spanish border, this colorful and picturesque postcard-perfect village is the ideal trekking destination. Trekking routes depart from the town centre and head to secluded, hidden beaches through beautiful landscapes. The solar lighthouse in Cap Cerbère towers over a high and steep cliff with its red top. 

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04.20.2018

Blooming flowers are the most unmistakable sign of winter’s ending, and it’s no surprise that this natural wonder is so eagerly awaited everywhere in the world. Wherever it happens, nature’s rebirth can be truly refreshing, so why not celebrate it by following this colorful wave all around the planet? Here are a few destinations that you should not miss out. Okinawa to Washington Hanami is the name for the contemplation of blossoming cherry trees that envelop Japan in pink from Okinawa, down south, in January to the northern island of Hokkaido in June. Every year, millions of Japanese and international tourists travel out of love for this natural spectacle. Yet hanami can also be experienced in the US: the Tidal Basin in Washington DC is surrpunded by beautiful cherry trees planted in 1912 by the then mayor of Tokyo Ozaki. Piana di Castelluccio (Italy)Castelluccio di Norcia is a village in the heart of the Sibillini Mountains National Park in central Italy, overlooking a huge plateau where red lentil flowers bloom between the end of May and the beginning of July, blending with tulips and narcissuses, thus giving birth to the so-called fiorita. Arles to Verdun (France)Blossoming almond trees in February, irises in May, lavender from June to August: from Provence to Auvergne, southern France is the ideal flower tourist destination.  Van Gogh and the Impressionists freezed in time this ever-rebirthing beauty, and the master perfumers of Grasse turned it into iconic fragrances. Uttarakhand (India)West of the Himalaya, at over 12,000 feet of altitude, on the banks of the Pushpawati river sits the Valley of Flowers National Park which welcomes tourists looking for colorful, pristine nature since 1982. From June to October, trek tours through the valley allow them to quietly enjoy the amazing spectacle of the blooming flowers, and maybe to spot the occasional snow leopard. Kaukenhof (The Netherlands)The largest flower park in the world is just 35 km from Amsterdam and it boasts over 32 hectares of pure color thanks to the thousands of tulips that bloom every year. The park is open during the blooming season, from March to May, and it is deemed a must-see among flower tourism enthusiasts. Herfordshire, Norfolk e Devonshire (UK)Bluebells are wild flowers whose color varies from light blue to indigo from a 19-inch tall perennial herb which blooms in May. Every year in May, they paint the English woods deep blue, making for the perfect excuse to discover England beyond London. Val D’Orcia (Italy)Between the provinces of Siena and Grosseto there is an extraordinary concentration of medieval villages including Pienza, Bagno Vignoni, Montalcino, and Monticchiello. From April to May, these meadows and hills sloping towards the sea are dressed in red because of the thousands of blooming poppiesHitachi Seaside Park (Japan)East of Tokyo, in the Ibaraki Prefecture, there is a 860-acre flower park overlooking the Pacific Ocean that is open all year round thanks to the exceptional variety of flowers that alternate from season to season, changing the color of the landscape. The 170 varieties of tulips and the million daffodils are only two of them, along with the classic “baby blue eyes”, the tiny blue flowers that dot the meadows between April and May. El Kelaa M’Gouna (Morocco)50 miles northeast of Ouarzazate, on the Moroccan Atlas Mountains, lies the Valley of the Roses, where thousands of wild roses bloom every year in May, hosting the local Rose Festival that attracts enthusiasts and professionals from all over the world. The most widespread variety, the Damask rose, is picked at dawn, when the scent is more intense, and dried to be used for essential oils and fragrances. The roses blooming at dawn on the orange mountains make for an unforgettable view. Greenwich Park, LondonA Royal Park ever since 1433, Greenwich Park is home to long rows of cherry trees that dress its paths in pink and white every year between April and May. An unexpected cherry blossoming that is yet another excellent reason for visiting this beautiful park, mostly known for the Observatory and the Greenwich meridian. 

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Hotels and inns are always charming and ideal for unwinding. However, if you truly want to experience nature to the full, camping is what you are looking for. After treading the mountains and woods all day, you will just love crashing in your highly functional khaki and red, Japanese-made Snow Peak tent. Founder Yukio Yamai started out as a hardware wholesaler. An accomplished mountaineer, he soon became dissatisfied with the existing mountain gear on the market and decided to set up his own company, Snow Peak, which was to become a synonym with functionality and originality. Headquartered in Sanjō, Niigata Prefecture, Snow Peak was relocated to Tsubame-Sanjō from the city area, where it continues to develop uniquely-designed camping gear, without losing sight of the consumers’ expectations. Snow Peak provides a wide array of tents, to meet the expectations of all campers, from the beginners to the more experienced, making them feel as comfortable as in a bedroom. The tents come in three main categories: entry level, standard level and pro level. And then of course, you can choose the size, material and style of your tent. If you are considering car camping, an all-in-one tent is the most suitable solution, with all the living area integrated and no tarpaulin needed, which makes it quicker to put up and take down. If you are looking for tranquillity, the all-in-one shelter will make you forget you are on a campsite, providing you with a large space where you can have a relaxing time with your family or by yourself. 

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04.16.2018

Hong Kong truly shines at night. When the sunset sets in and the lights of the skyscrapers turn on (at 8 p.m. sharp), the city acquires the unique and unmistakable charm that has turned it into an icon. Suspended between the British colonial era heritage and a strong Chinese imprint, this crowded city of 7 million souls (including 68 billionaires) is an urban jungle that rises up to the sky for obvious space limitations, and although at times it can get pretty busy and packed you will hardly feel uncomfortable or in danger. Scattered with starred restaurant offering cuisine from all over the world, amazing clubs and rooftop bars with breathtaking views, Hong Kong certainly isn’t short of things to do at night – actually, there are so many options that it’s probably best to narrow them down a bit. So, here’s everything you need to know to spend an unforgettable night in town. Moving Across TownHK is divided into four main areas: Honk Kong island, Kowloon Peninsula, the New Territories, and Lantau island. Depending on where you have to go, you will need to call or hail a different kind of taxi (red and silver for HK island and Kowloon, green and white for New Territories, and blue for Lantau).Taxis in Hong Kong abound and are incredibly inexpensive, so this is truly a great option – just remember that they do not accept card and drivers prefer smaller bills or coins.The subway is also great value for the money: just buy an Octopus Card (which also  serves as a prepaid credit card) and it will take you anywhere in the city.Also very affordable is the historic green & white Star Ferry (dating back to the 19th century) travelling from HK island (Central Pier) to Kowloon (Star Ferry Pier) and back every 10-12 minutes across the Victoria harbor: besides offering the opportunity to admire the city’s skyline, this is really a quintessential HK experience that you should not miss. A Taste of Pure HK-style NightlifeIf you’re willing to plunge into the heart of the city’s vibrant life (and nightlife), we definitely recommend a walk along Hollywood Road, the winding street that stretches all the way from Hollywood Road Park through SoHo and to the heart of Central, Hong Kong island’s busiest district. You will be swept away by the incredible amount of restaurants, street food stalls, bars and shops – especially antiques and art stores. The Perfect SunsetSo, the night is coming and the sun is about to set. Time to head to Victoria’s Peak, Hong Kong’s highest peak (at over 1,800 feet), which offers one of the best views on Victoria Harbor and the whole HK island. Take the Peak Tram (from the Central Pier Star Ferry), enjoy the ride and reach the nearby Peak Tower of the Lion Kiosk to watch the sunset over the city and see the lights turn on. The Night MarketNight markets are yet another HK classic. This old tradition 19th century tradition used to include hunting for bargains in the cool evening temperatures, live shows and late night street food snacking – one of the most famous night market, which was later replaced by the Macau Ferry Terminal, was significantly named the Poor Man’s Nightclub.Of all the night markets, the Temple Street Night Market is the only authentic one that is left: you can buy everything from clothes to traditional art, electronics, and accessories, and most things come at very affordable prices. And of course, the street food abounds. DINING & DRINKINGThe food and drink scene in Hong Kong is truly incredible, almost overwhelming. In a city at the crossroads of East and West where you can find basically every kind of cuisine the world has to offer, it can sometimes be hard to discern and pick the right place among the endless variety of bars and restaurants. So, here’s a selection of some of our favourite spots. RestaurantsHoo Lee ForkFunky chinese cuisine inspired by old school Hong Kong cha chaan tengs (affordable restaurants) and the spirit of late-night Chinatown hangouts in 1960s New York. The ChairmanSimply put, the city’s best Cantonese restaurant, where you can find the best fresh ingredients with an eco-friendly take on traditional recipes. Mott 32A beautifully designed modern Chinese restaurants in the heart of Central that seamlessly blends New York industrial style with Chinese imperial elements in a homage to Hong Kong culture and cuisine. Duddel’sA classy and sophisticated Michelin-starred restaurant with beautiful art on the walls and stylishly designed interiors, offering everything from dim sum to top-notch international cuisine. Tate diningA superb fine dining destination serving an eclectic mix of French and Asian Cuisine and a set of “Edible Stories” taking diners on a gustatory adventure. BarsFoxgloveA speakeasy disguised as a British-style umbrella shop and accessed via a secret doorway towards the back of the boutique. The glamorous interiors are absolutely cinematic and inspired by 1930s first-class airplanes and vintage cars. Definitely a one-of-a-kind place. QuinaryA hip Hollywood Road cocktail bar that has become an institution thanks to its unique molecular cocktails, created by renowned bartender Antonio Lai. Please Don’t TellThe intimate cocktail bar of the Mandarin Oriental Hotel -  a branch of the New York bar of the same name – is a sleek, international venue offering creative cocktails developed by renowned mixologists Jim Meehan and Jeff Bell. Ping Pong GintonerìaNestling in happening Sai Ying Pun, with its spacious, urban chic interior, and hidden hangout vibe, Ping Pong Gintonería is the hipspot for stylish sipsmiths and cocktail casualistas alike. Murray LaneThe bar housed inside the lofty and light-filled lobby of the luxurious Murray Hotel is a hit on the vibrant Hong Kong bar scene, offering everything from artisanal spirits to wines and craft beers, along with refined small plates of bar favourites. The hotel will soon be opening a much-anticipated new rooftop bar, so… stay tuned!  Thanks to Claudia Gaudiello for the recommendations.

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04.13.2018

Open mics, slams, readings, theatrical performances: poetry is alive and kicking, and it feeds on new rituals and unexpected places. Encouraged by a spirit of cultural revenge bordering on the world of hip hop and rap music, it is bringing its moderately subversive vibe beyond traditional spaces, finding freedom in improvisation and in the vagueness of the rhymes. Although most places devoted to poetry are below the radar, there are a few institutions that still aim at making a clear statement – “this is where poetry is made”. Poetry Café, LondonIn 1909, the Poetry Society was born here with the aim of promoting and spreading the art of poetry. Today, the charity organization has over 4,000 members worldwide, a prestigious annual publication (The Poetry Review) and a rich program of readings, poetry performances, visual arts exhibitions, and concerts: a hybrid space in Covent Garden where the passion for poetry becomes an excuse for promoting all artistic languages. Walden, MilanoInspired by Henry David Thoreau’s famous novel of the same name, this new space aims at being a cultural hub, a literary café, and a space for poetry, with plenty of events, bookshelves loaded with books from independent publishers, and a vegetarian bistrot. Nuyorican, New YorkAllen Ginsberg once defined this space in the East Village "the most integrated place on the planet". It was the year 1973 and the atmosphere, despite the time and location changes, has not changed: poetry still remains the voice of minorities, the most accessible and free form of language, exclusively resulting from talent and exercise. Jazz and hip hop music concerts, which share the same vocation, share the stage with poetry slams, open mic, open mics, and readingsCafé Poesie de Belleville, ParigiIn 2016, Rodrigo Ramis, a poet and a contemporary stage actor, founded this place with the desire to create an actual meeting place for humans, a unique and protected space in one of the districts that epitomize multiculturalism in the French capital. The program includes stage-less theatrical improvisation performances and poetry readings open to anyone willing to experiment and listen. Bluecoat Poetry Café, LiverpoolBluecoat is a center for contemporary arts in the heart of Liverpool, housed in an ancient UNESCO World Heritage building. In this place that has made the history of contemporary performing arts – it even hosted Yoko Ono’s first paid performance in 1967 - the Poetry Café is a space devoted to poetry and music performances and creative experimentation. 

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Achille Castiglioni was born in Milan on February 16, 1918. Son of the sculptor Giannino Castiglioni and brother of Livio and Pier Giacomo, he was the pivot of one of the families that marked the aesthetics of the 20th century, picturing new shapes for everyday objects such as lamps, armchairs and tables, and turning them into functional works of art. The Achille Castiglioni Foundation celebrates the centennial of Achille’s birth with a series of exhibitions and events spreading from Milan to the world, as did the work of this amazing designer whose objects are on display at the MoMa in New York and have been exhibited in all the major design institutions of the world over the course of his long career. Until April 30, the Milanese headquarters of the Foundation will host the 100x100 exhibition, gathering 100 objects selected by as many designers from all over the world, each accompanied by a birthday wishes card: a little thought to celebrate Castiglioni's commitment to making the ordinary extraordinary, a sort of museum of the anonymous object whose design intelligence is only perceived by a careful eye. From May 25 to December 21, the M.A.X. Museum di Chiasso will host an exhibition devoted to Castiglioni, and the celebrations will terminate at the Triennale Museum in Milan with a retrospective curated by Patricia Urquiola and Silvana Annicchiarico. A designer and a professor of Industrial Design in Milan and Turin, with his work and his vision Achille Castiglioni contributed to redefining design: choosing an object, studying its shape until it is emptied and grasping its essence, using imagination and ingenuity to transfigure its image without losing its function or sacrificing its industrial reproducibility. The Sanluca Armchair, designed in 1960 for Dino Gavina, visionary owner of Gavina SpA, is a clear example of this process: starting from an eighteenth-century round and soft armchair, Castiglioni turned it into a thin line that follows the back of a person and cleaves the air, a minimalistic version of the original and yet just as convenient and functional. Toio, the famous lamp designed for Flos, is yet another example. The parts that make the object functional are all there: light, stem, supporting base. However, these functions are replaced one by one by other elements: the light is a car headlight, the wire a fishing line, the base a transformer. Castiglioni also designed the famous Arco by Flos (1962), the first overhead lamp without a ceiling suspension, a nodal point in the development of design applied to interior lighting. Over the years, Castiglioni worked with the most important international design firms, including Cassina, Knoll, Kartell and Zanotta, just to name a few. Among the founders of ADI (the Industrial Design Association), he won 9 Compasso d'Oro awards, promoting quality in the field of industrial made-in-Italy designs. In addition to designing an extraordinary sequence of iconic objects, Achille Castiglioni has left us a whole concept of design based on research, curiosity, and a touch of irony, which prompts designers to always start from scratch, preventing their experience from finding shortcuts. 

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04.09.2018

Why go out to go to the movies when Netflix & Co. bring the same stars, contents, and directors directly into our homes? Because the movie theatre is not just a frame, it is part of the image, of the experience, a place that has a history of its own. Operating a small cinema in 2018 is a political act, a practical form of resistance to the rapid changes that film production and consumption have been undergoing over the last few years. The good news is, someone is really doing it: here are five tiny movie theatres around the world that you should definitely know. Uplink (Shibuya, Tokyo)A temple of entertainment in the heart of Tokyo’s nightlife district, Uplink was founded in 1987 and includes three theatres including the smallest one in Japan, with only 40 seats, screening local and international independent films along with with documentaries and (a  few) box office hits. Nitehawk (Williamsburg, New York City)Founded in 2011, this unique place has set an absolute record, overcoming the last traces of Prohibitionism, i.e. the law that forbid the consumption of alcohol in cinemas. Inside its three theatres (respectively featuring 30, 62, and 90 seats) the audience can enjoy drinks and gourmet food while watching art films, documentaries, and international hitsSun Pictures (Broome, Australia)The oldest open-air cinema in the world, Sun Pictures was born in 1903 as a theatre founded by the Yamasaki family and later turned into a movie theatre. With the sea for a backdrop and the beach for a floor (before the sea barriers were built, at high tide you could watch a movie with your feet in the water), this one-of-a-kind place has really been a witness to the history of film and of Australia - a living documentary on cinemaIl Cinemino (Milan)This newborn, crowdfunded movie theatre aims at reviving the single-screen neighborhood cinema concept. Yet it’s not just about nostalgia: with 75 seats and a beautiful retro-style bar, il Cinemino constantly hosts popular and emerging directors, actors and screenwriters from around the world to talk about their work, screening films of all genres and for all ages from the early afternoon on. Le Brady (Paris)Choosing a movie theatre in Paris is no easy task: after all, this is the city where it all began back in 1895. Le Brady is one of the few movie theatres in the Strasbourg-St.Denis district, and it boasts none other than François Truffaut among its past frequent patrons. Which should not surprise us, since Le Brady has always been screening niche films along with international hits. Its smallest salle has only 39 seats where you can enjoy art films in a quiet and charming atmosphere. 

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04.06.2018

Chatting all night about soccer with Paolo Nutini in a Dublin bar while drinking whiskey and Guinness is not something that happens every day, but it's actually pretty usual for Mattia Zoppellaro, a young Venetian photographer who has had the honor of portraying some of the most legendary names in the international rock scene, including Lou Reed U2,  Paul Weller, and David Gilmour. In this exclusive interview, he tells us about his encounter with these music icons and how he managed to turn their souls into beautifully authentic and eloquent pictures.Among the most remarkable episodes, check out the story of his encounter with Patti Smith and Depeche Mode and the one about chasing Amy Winehouse. 

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04.06.2018

The Shizuoka prefecture is very easy to access from Tokyo, and so is the Tōkaidō Hiroshige Museum of Art. All you have to do is take the Tōkaidō Railway Line from Shizuoka Station, ride for about 20 minutes and get off at Yui Station. In the nearby Yui-Honjin park sits the museum, which was opened in 1994 and named after Hiroshige Utagawa, one of the most representative and respected artists in the domain of ukiyo-e (literally “pictures of the floating world”), a genre of Japanese art that consists of woodcut prints and paintings, and one of Japan’s symbols. Hiroshige was one of the most brilliant pupils of another illustrious Japanese painter, Hokusai, who achieved the zenith of his career pretty late in life, when he was seventy, with the series of prints Thirty-six Views of Mount Fuji.  Born in 1797, Hiroshige first became an apprentice of Toyohiro Utagawa and by the age of sixteen he was allowed to sign his works, which he did under his mononym “Hiroshige”. The Utagawa school throve on portraits of female beauties and kabuki performers, but Hiroshige expanded and gave a personal touch to life portraiture. His Ten Famous Places in the Eastern Capital, which were perhaps too heavily influenced by Hokusai’s Thirty-six Views, were not so well received. Nonetheless, 35-year-old Hiroshige’s depictions of Mount Fuji represent a departure from 72-year-old Hokusai’s point of view. Hiroshige focused on new places, new landmarks and new perspectives and in a couple of years he spawned the Fifty-Three Stations of the Tōkaidō - depicting the stations along the Tōkaidō, one of the five major roads of Japan in the Edo period - which were released to great acclaim, thanks to the sacred status of Mount Fuji and the development of tourism in the places represented in the series. In addition to this famous series, the museum’s permanent collection includes approximately 1,400 pieces, including one of Hiroshige’s late works, the One Hundred Famous Views of Edo series. he Tōkaidō Hiroshige Museum of Art endeavours to provide visitors with fresh viewpoints on ukiyo-e by rotating the collection every month, holding conferences and art talks, and allowing visitors to experiment with printing.  

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04.04.2018

The county fair is the most ‘American’ of American traditions. For over 170 years, it has been the bedrock of American communities across the country, showcasing the power and meaning of some of the most unifying and nostalgic ideals of the American culture and society. Generally held in the late summer or early fall on the outskirts of town, the fair was originally a meeting place for farmers to promote local agriculture. In the 20th century, as America shifted from an agrarian to an urban society, it expanded dramatically to include a wealth of family focused fun and entertainment, from carnival amusement rides, games, and side shows to car racing, concession stands, and musical concerts. During the summer of 2015, American photographer Pamela Littky travelled across the U.S. to capture the sites of these important seasonal markers in America’s heartland. She drove thousands of miles to experience and document fairs all over the country, teeming with the people who call the surrounding area home. “I have spent most of my adult life in Los Angeles, (where) the one thing that seems lacking is a true sense of ‘community’ — a feeling of connection among its diverse and unique populations”, Pamela said. What she discovered is that the essence of the American fair has not changed very much over the past century. While the social and cultural fabric of the United States has evolved considerably, the fairs continue to draw millions of people yearly from different backgrounds and upbringings who seek a place near their homes where community is celebrated in all its diversity. The results of Littky’s road trips are published for the first time in American Fair, a breathtaking collection of photographs where wistful reflections on the past meet the challenging realities of American life in the 21st century. Idyllic portraits of farmers and rope-and-ride spectators are shown alongside tableaux that evoke undertones of apprehension and uncertainty. Elderly faces that have seen many seasons of the fair are interspersed with images of youth who project determination or innocence underneath adolescent postures. An amazing work that, in our humble opinion, belongs in the same league as some of the great masters of photography who documented real America, such as Robert Frank and Dorothea Lange. 

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04.03.2018

What will happen to illustration in an age in which everything, from reality to works of art, is digitally reproducible? What will become of this vast world halfway between art and craftsmanship? Which worlds can an illustrator explore beyond the boundaries of a paper sheet? Driven by the uniqueness of its nature and of its own limits, illustration continues to evolve. For us enthusiasts, it is not easy to understand in which directions it will go, but talking to an insider can certainly help us get a clearer picture. These and other considerations emerged from our conversation with Ale Giorgini, an Italian illustrator whose works have reached Tokyo, New York, Zurich, Vienna, Paris, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Melbourne and many other cities in the world. Giorgini won the Good Design Award from the Chicago Museum of Design and was selected by the New York Society of Illustrators. He is the president and artistic director of Illustri Festival and an illustration teacher. SJ: What are the inspirations behind your work and your creativity?AG: What I draw comes from my childhood: Carosello (Italian old-style TV advertising), Hanna & Barbera’s cartoons, the illustrated books by Miroslav Sasek, and I Quindici, a famous children’s encyclopaedia.How I draw, on the other hand, comes from the path I had to undertake: I earned my diploma as a surveyor and worked for 15 years as a graphic designer. At one point, the lysergic charm of the of the 1960s and 1970s aesthetics met the rigour of geometry and vector graphics, and this encounter gave life to what I do today. SJ: How do you see the relationship between colours and strokes? Which role do they play in your work?AG: It might seem bizarre, but I've always loved filling contours. As a kid, I used to puncture the paper with all the energy that I put into tracing over the lines of my drawings until I thought they were perfect. For this reason, I am madly in love with Illustrator: it allows me to have total control of every element, of every single line. My illustrations have extremely marked traits. And honestly, I never asked myself why: I am a self-taught illustrator and probably everything is a consequence of my lack of technical preparation. Colours came later, to harmonize those otherwise incomprehensible signs. Colours are almost inevitably necessary to untangle the shapes contained in my drawings and make them visible. There are times when my black and white drawings look like puzzles that only become clear with the addition of colours. For this reason, colours and strokes are often essential. SJ: What makes the hand of a talented illustrator unique?AG: I don’t think I have talent - and I don’t say this out of false modesty or to earn your readers’ sympathy. I often say - with absolute conviction - that I cannot draw. My gift, if I were to find one, would be that of turning my own limits into resources. Not having any artistic preparation, I have found a recognizable language that totally leverages my limits as a designer. For this reason, I appreciate the personality and the character of an image much more than its technical execution. I often find myself faced with images that are extraordinarily beautiful and yet absolutely empty. The vision behind an image is what needs be unique, the illustrator’s hand may even be imperfect. But of course, if you have both a vision and a good hand, then you have it all. SJ: What about the trends of contemporary illustration: what’s beyond paper?AG: Today, paper is to illustration what pizza is to restaurants: it's an evergreen, everybody likes it, but you cannot eat pizza every day of your life (although I could seriously consider that option). The world out there is much bigger than an A4 paper sheet and there are plenty of opportunities on the new fronts of communication. The market is giving extremely positive signals and there is a strong rediscovery of illustration even in previously unexplored areas. Recently I saw this happen everywhere from fashion and furniture design to live news reporting and the personalization of cruise ships and other objects. Think of the Milan subway station that became an art gallery with images designed by Emiliano Ponzi, or of the cruise ship entirely customized by Riccardo Guasco. Purists might turn up their noses in front of these "daring" uses of illustration, but personally I believe their attitude makes no sense at all. Today, that of the illustrator is one of the most crucial roles in the creative industry, because illustration is a language that manages to touch people’s hearts and raise emotions in a way that other languages can hardly do. SJ: Even the subjects have changed a lot.AG: Actually, I believe that illustration is still doing what it has always done: telling something about reality. This can happen in the form of a comment in a newspaper or a magazine, but also through different media. Besides drawing for a newspaper article or an illustrated book, illustrators often find themselves designing a skateboard, a wine bottle, an animated gif, a T-shirts, or even a room. The subjects have changed because the world has changed. 

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03.30.2018

Have you ever thought about how many beautiful cities you have been missing so far simply because you’ve never even considered visiting them? Hiding in the shade of the big world capitals and sheltered by their being off the radar, these ‘minor’ destinations may not be top-of-mind but they are often full of surprises. From Europe to the United States and Japan, here are a few detours worth taking from your next travels. Nantes, FranceThe Capital of Western Loire, Nantes turned from a port and an industrial city into a cultural hub which attracts tourists and talents from all over the world, just like the l’Île de Nantes, a long island on the Loire that went from being an industrial district to becoming a civic and art space. The Bouffay district, around the castle, is yet another example: a maze of medieval streets full of small shops and bistros often welcoming creative intrusions from contemporary artists. Between July and August, Le Voyage festival helps visitors discover the city and its highlights, from the cathedral of Saint Paul et Pierre to the Museum of Fine Arts, featuring works by Picasso, Chagall, Kandinsky, and Monet. Lübeck, GermanyThe "Venice of the Baltic" is a city of water along the Trave river and 20 kilometers away from the sea. Accessing from Holstenstor, the ancient medieval gate that marks the entrance to the city, you will cross a maze of winding streets that open onto small squares surrounded by sloped roof houses. Lübeck's belonging to the Hanseatic League, the group of Baltic cities that dominated the trades in Northern Europe between the 14th and 16th centuries, has left marks everywhere. With its typical red brick architecture, the Buddenbrook Haus in memory of Thomas Mann and the delicious marzipan sweets, Lübeck is the ideal city for a slow weekend. Portland, USAThis vibrant Oregon city is mostly known as the home of hipsters and indie-folk music. Yet Portland is also a comaratively quiet and pedestrian-friendly town that you can explore by taking long walks, crossing the movable bridges over the Willamette River under a constant drizzle, listening to dozens of different languages ​​and trying food from all over the world sold by the food trucks that dot the center. A multicultural college town, Portland offers tons of craft breweries, bicycles everywhere, a lively Chinatown and former industrial buldings converted into art galleries, creative hubs, and smart economy startups. Sapporo, JapanHokkaido is the northernmost island of Japan and its landscape, by nature and climate, is close to that of the European Alps or the Sierra Nevada. Sapporo is one of its largest and most vibrant cities, featuring a vast urban park and the popular Snow Festival in February, which fills the city with ice and snow sculptures. As for food and drinks, the local beer of the same name is the perfect complement to some exceptional ramen from the Susukino neighborhood or seafood from the fish market. Tavira, PortugalAlgarve, the most renowned destination in Portugal, has recently become the target of thousands of tourists, especially from Northern Europe. Yet there is a small town that has managed to retain its century-old charm: Tavira. A few kilometers from Faro, it has a typically Moorish plant, with a narrow streets and small squares, and it offers the unspoilt nature of its beaches sheltered by the Ria Formosa Natural Park, as well as the ancient beauty of the 37 churches that dot it. Vicenza, ItalyAmong widely recognized gems such as Venice, Verona and Padua there is a Venetian city that is distinguished by a sober and composed beauty: Vicenza, the town that was (re)designed by architect Andrea Palladio (1508-1580) with consistent magnificency, from the aristocratic palaces to the villas on the Riviera dei Colli Berici onthe southern border of the city. Among its gems are the beautiful Basilica, a Unesco heritage, and the Loggia del Capitaniato, home of the local legislative and judicial power at the time of Venetian rule. The Olympic Theater is the ultimate example of the architectural matrix of the city: designed by Palladio, it has an incredible trompe-l’oeil onstage scenery - the oldest surviving stage set still in existence - designed in 1585 by Vincenzo Scamozzi and replicating long streets receding to a distant horizon. Ghent, BelgiumGhent is one of the most vibrant cities of the East Flanders. A city of water at the confluence of rivers Lys and Schelda, for centuries it has been a major trading port, and this heritage is still visible in its ancient architecture. The pleasant contrast between the thousands of students from all over the world who come here to study at the local university and the old-time grandeur of its noble palaces and Gothic cathedrals gives the impression of a place suspended in time and yet dynamic. Segovia, SpainThe symbol of Segovia is the Roman aqueduct built in the first century AD that, with its 30 meters of height and 800 of length, for centuries has been carrying water into the city from the heights of the Sierra that surrounds it. The marks left by the Romans are enriched with Medieval walls, Romanesque churches, Gothic cathedrals and the much more recent mines, making this city an example of a melting pot in the heart of the Castilla Y Leon region, north-west of Madrid, along the course of river Eresma and the route of the Camino de Santiago.