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Number 12

May 2017

Emily Guilding

“This is like climbing a tree in a hurricane”

Jordan for nomads

Adventure

The Thanaka country

Exotic

Around the world in 80 clubs

TRENDS

Contents

Magazine

Contents

Contents

Number 12

Australia

Forever tied to the sea

The untamed ocean on one side, nature at its wildest on the other. Two lanes separate land and sea and they stretch along the Australian coast surrounded by vertiginous cliffs, kangaroos and surfers.

Emily Guilding

“This is like climbing a tree in a hurricane”

She exchanged her office job to do acrobatics at more than 240 km per hour, attached to a 1940s biplane. That is life in the clouds.

Adventure

Jordan for nomads

650km in 40 days: The Jordan Trail, the new route that crosses Jordan from north to south, is sending out a loud, clear call to hiking fans.

Exotic

The Thanaka country

It is starting to find its way onto the list of favourite destinations, but Myanmar remains unknown to many and still has its secrets. Like the mysterious markings on the faces of Burmese people.

GASTRONOMY

Life after 'nigiri'

Japanese cuisine isn’t just rice and raw fish. Pizza, croquettes and Japanese omelette all compete with sushi. Get your chopsticks ready.

WELLNESS

The Nordic secret to happiness

Kick off your pursuit of happiness by learning the meaning of ‘hygge,’ ‘lagom’ and ‘koselig.’ The ‘hakuna matata’ for Denmark, Sweden and Norway, the happiest countries in the world.

TRENDS

Around the world in 80 clubs

A British gentleman’s club used to be his second home, and these days Soho House offers its members houses all over the world. Though you don’t need to be a gentleman, you need to be discreet.

Top 6A

Hotel couture

Fashion designers don’t just set the trend on the catwalk. They also leave their signatures on different hotels, rooms and tourist resorts around the world.

Travelbeats

Fashionable hotels and restaurants, ground-breaking galleries, new openings and the hottest hotspots on the planet all await you here.

Staff

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Design

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Report - Australia

Magazine

DESTINATION

AUSTRALIA

Forever tied to the sea

TEXT:

Alejandra Abad

photos:

Tourism Australia

Visit Victoria

The untamed ocean on one side, nature at its wildest on the other. Two lanes separate land and sea and they stretch along the Australian coast surrounded by vertiginous cliffs, kangaroos and surfers.\n

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o you fancy visiting ‘The Sow and Pigs’? You have to admit that the name isn’t very appealing and that’s exactly what the Australian government thought in the 1950s, which is why they decided to change it to ‘The Twelve Apostles’. This marketing trick converted a rocky formation into one of the main attractions on the south eastern coast of the country. Very near Port Campbell there are eight huge, majestic limestone stacks that emerge from the Antarctic Ocean, reaching a height of up to 45 m. There used to be nine –one collapsed in 2005 - but the name needed some poetry.\n

The Great Ocean Road, a 240-km route that winds along the coastline and joins together the most important Australian clichés

The rocky giants are the main attraction of the Great Ocean Road, a 240-km route that winds along the coastline and joins together the most enduring Australian clichés. Wild waves with surfers riding them, natural parks inhabited by koala bears and kangaroos, vineyards and little fishing villages. The road begins about 100km away from Melbourne, in Torquay, the home of brands like Rip Curl and Quiksilver and a place where surfing is a religion. After a few minutes, you arrive at Bells Beach, a sanctuary for devoted surfers, with waves up to five metres high. Throughout the route there are other beaches, including Fairhaven and Eastern View, which offer you the possibility to conquer the sea.
 
The wind, which relentlessly lashes the coast, has been the cause of numerous shipwrecks. So far, around 240 wreckages have been discovered, though more than 600 ships have sunk while attempting to reach this rugged, cliff-packed coast. As a result, the 130km that separate Princetown from Peterborough are known as ‘Shipwreck Coast’.\n

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The wind, which relentlessly lashes the coast, has been the cause of numerous shipwrecks. So far, around 240 wreckages have been discovered, though more than 600 ships have sunk while attempting to reach this rugged, cliff-packed coast. As a result, the 130km that separate Princetown from Peterborough are known as ‘Shipwreck Coast’.\n

The speed limit is 80km/h, giving you the chance to enjoy the views along the route.

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Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach is one of the oldest and most prestigious championships in the world.

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The memory of the asphalt

The road was built between 1919 and 1932 by the 3,000 soldiers who returned to their country after the First World War. The only tools they had were picks, shovels and carts. The route was dedicated to those who died in the conflict, which makes the road the longest war memorial in the world.\n

Driving along the Great Ocean Road, listening to folk songs by the surfer, Jack Johnson, the scenery beckons you to stop the car and immerse yourself in your surroundings. However, you mustn’t forget that at any time you can come across another two Australian clichés, ones that look misleadingly like inoffensive furry toys:  the kangaroo and the koala. As an Aussie would say, ‘No worries, mate’; the traffic signs remind you every few kilometres.\n

While the sea laps over one side of the road, officially called the B-110, the other side is flanked by national parks. In Great Otway there are huge waterfalls that hide caves full of glow worms. The walkways over the eucalyptus forest, suspended 30m above the ground, are the highest in the world. Despite the strong scent of these trees, the smell of saltwater never disappears.
 
Technically, the Great Ocean Road ends in Allansford, but many people add a few kilometres to this scenic route and go as far as Warrnambool.  Between May and October, Southern Right whales go to Logan Beach to give birth to their calves. Or you might prefer to go to Cape Bridgewater, where you can see hundreds of sea lions resting on the beach.
 
‘Australians all let us rejoice, For we are young and free (...) Our home is girt by sea; Our land abounds in nature's gifts’. The poetic lyrics of the Australian national anthem could easily refer to the Great Ocean Road. Much better than ‘The Sow and the Pigs’, which never came close to doing them justice.\n

The elevated walkway in Great Otway National Park is 600 metres long.

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Paths made for trekkers

The Great Ocean Walk offers trekking-lovers 100km of trails, from Apollo Bay to The Twelve Apostles. The walk skirts the sea and takes about eight days to complete or, if you prefer, you can just join sections of it and then drive the rest.\n

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Despite looking so cuddly, koalas can be very aggressive.

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Building a road meant that the soldiers who came back from the war could earn a wage. This sculpture marks the beginning of the road and is a tribute to these men.

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Interview

Magazine

Interview

“This is like climbing a tree in a hurricane”

Emily Guilding

She exchanged her office job to do acrobatics at more than 240 km per hour, attached to a 1940s biplane. That is life in the clouds.\n

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It takes about a month of training to be a wingwalker.

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What kind of routines do you perform and which one do you think is the most difficult?\n

We perform a gymnastic routine which lasts 17 minutes whilst the plane is doing an aerobatic flight which includes loops, rolls, dives and climbs. We do various moves up there such as extending our legs, waving and handstands, we also sit on the front of the wing and climb in and out of the cockpit. The hardest part is climbing out of the cockpit in mid-flight - this is like climbing a tree in a hurricane!\n

And your favourite acrobatics?\n

My favourite part is the loop – it’s awesome feeling weightless at the top of the loop with the plane above me and the ground below!\n

Which location has impressed you the most and why?\n

Personally I have flown in Dubai, Japan and China. I found Dubai to be the most exciting as it was over the palm island and around the Burj Kalifa and Burj Al Arab – all iconic buildings that you see on the TV.\n

What do you like the most about your job?\n

I love the fact that I get to travel all over the world and see new places and landmarks from such a unique perspective – from the top of a biplane – not many people can say they’ve done that!\n

Did you ever imagine that you were going to end up performing aerobatics on top of a plane?\n

I had a very sensible career as an environmental consultant for five years which I enjoyed but in my late-twenties I realised I wanted to do something that was outdoors and active rather than being in an office 9 to 5. I started after I saw my sister Stella in a Breitling Wingwalkers show. Being in the team together it’s a fantastic experience as we fly so close together so that we are able to see each other and pull faces whilst we are up in the air!\n

What do your family think about you and your sister being ‘wingwalkers’?\n

They think it’s great – my dad has had a go at wingwalking for fun and absolutely loved it so he understands why we want to do it.  They have been watching us at a couple of airshows. It’s awesome knowing they are down in the crowd watching us do our thing!\n

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Where would you like to perfom that you haven’t done yet?\n

Over the Grand Canyon or Niagara Falls would be very cool!\n

Can anyone be a wingwalker?\n

To be a professional wingwalker you need to be less than 5’4” and under 8.5 stone. This is to minimise drag so that the plane can easily perform the manoeuvres. However, almost anyone can come and wingwalk for fun. As long as you are under 6’1” and 14 stone you can come to our airfield in Gloucestershire and have a go. Dont worry – we will strap you onto the wing securely and give you a full safety briefing!\n

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Emily doesn’t want to dance on terra firma, she prefers sky ballet. Specifically, on top of a biplane, more than 300 m above the ground. In full flight, she gets out of the cabin and climbs onto the wings, where she performs impossible movements, while the plane does acrobatic manoeuvres. She and the biplane have to coordinate each movement with their colleagues. Together, they comprise the Breitling Wingwalkers patrol, the only wingwalking team in the world.
 
They are heirs of the barnstormers, popular teams of pilots and aerial acrobats, who triumphed in the 1920s and 1930s. The pioneer, the first wingwalker, was American Ormer Locklear, who stepped out of his cabin to fix a technical problem during training. It was 1918, and his reckless feat was soon included in all the aerial shows of the time, which included jumping from plane to plane and walking on the wings without a parachute or any type of harness.
 
Safety standards may have changed, but Emily and her colleagues have the same guts and love of heights. They demonstrate this on aeroplanes that are very similar to the ones they used back then, 1940 Boeing Stearman biplanes, but with new engines.\n

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Adventure

Magazine

ADVENTURE

Jordan for nomads

650km in 40 days: The Jordan Trail, the new route that crosses Jordan from north to south, is sending out a loud, clear call to hiking fans.
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In the words of Tolkien “Not all who wander are lost”. For thousands of years, walkers have traversed Jordan in search of knowledge, cultural exchanges and connections. They have included Nabatean merchants, making their way through the deserts, and the ancient Edomites, who followed the trade route from the King’s Highway to Damascus. The practice of travelling on foot is as ancient as the paths we have to follow.\n

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Photo: jordanTrail.org

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Now a gathering place for adventurers from all over the planet, Jordan has a trail for anyone looking to lose themselves. After five years of work, which involved more than 40 volunteers mapping the route, the Jordan Trail, a hiking path that crosses the country from north to south, is now open. At more than in length 650km, it passes through a total of 52 towns and cities. The JTA (Jordan Trail Association), which is responsible for developing and maintaining the route, explains “It is an open and free trail for hikers and first-timers to explore a healthier lifestyle, reconnect with nature, and sit down for a traditional meal with a local family in a village, after a long hike.”\n

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The back door to Petra

The route from Dana to Petra was the first section of the trail to be developed. National Geographic has acknowledged it as one of the best 15 hikes in the world. It is a unique opportunity to go into the pink city by the back door, up a stairway to Al Deir façade.\n

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The Jordan Trail passes through the country’s finest historical gems.

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The route takes 40 days to complete, and you can either do it in one go, or choose one of the eight stages that make up the trail. Each one takes between four and five days and they connect very different regions of the country, from the Mediterranean villages in the north, in the regions of Umm Qais and Al Ayoun, through the canyons of the Jordan Rift, and out into the echoes of Wadi Rum desert, to finish on the shores of the Red Sea.
 
The Jordan Trail passes through the country’s finest historical gems. Jerash and Petra are two cities that will strike the walker with the weight of their lost civilisations. In the north, the route runs through archaeological sites dating back to the beginnings of Christianity. You can cross Bethany, where Jesus was baptised, and climb Mount Nebo, where Moses saw the Promised Land. The age-old stories take on new life when you hear them told by a Jordanian Bedouin or shepherd by candlelight in Petra, inside a Bedouin tent in Wadi Rum, or beside the River Jordan, propped up on your backpack.
 
The organisation is nurturing a sense of community, similar to the one you can find on the Way of St James, Spain. This allows travellers to connect and form travelling groups. The JTA website offers information about points of interest, and maps for planning routes and transport.\n

Photo: jordanTrail.org

The national language of Jordan is Arabic, though many locals speak English.

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Photo: jordanTrail.org

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Local communities are an essential part of the project, since they provide meals and rooms for the hikers. Duha Fayyad, one of the first women to complete the entire trail, says “residents of areas along the trail provide a learning experience for hikers, by introducing them to traditional songs, folk music and storytelling, in addition to showing them aspects of rural life”.
 
The trail is in a constant state of change. Its evolution is based on suggestions made by the tourists and Jordanians who travel it (you can leave reviews on the JTA website). Of the many ways to travel a country, none is better than the one that leaves the dust from its roads on our shoes, and in our memories.\n

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Photo: yousefomar via VisualHunt.com

The Wadi Mujib canyon contains water all year round. Of its four possible routes, three are aquatic.

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On the road

The first official Jordan Trail Thru-Hike event, to travel the complete trail, took place on 31 March this year. Participants will be on the route until 13 May. It will become an open annual event, and one of the most exciting dates on the Jordan Trail calendar.\n

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Exotic

Magazine

EXOTIC

The thanaka country

It is starting to find its way onto the list of favourite destinations, but Myanmar remains unknown to many and still has its secrets. Like the mysterious markings on the faces of Burmese people.\n

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he name of Burmese makeup has a certain ring to it; it sounds like music: Thanaka. It catches your attention at once because nearly everyone wears it. Women, children and many men paint their cheeks with a kind of yellow clay that also protects their skin from the sun. And they don’t think twice about sharing it with visitors, tourists who feel the heat, tireless explorers of temples and new converts to the charms of Burmese fashion.
 
Thanaka is almost always homemade. It is produced by grinding the bark of a tree, dissolving it in water and then applying the paste on the face or body, usually making a circle, although they sometimes draw complicated designs with the help of a little stick. However, this timeless version of body art is not the only accessory we’re missing. The traditional costume, the Longyi, a sort of tube-shaped skirt that is worn by both men and women, does not seem to be made for us, since we are incapable of tying it like the locals do, without the help of belts or zips.\n

The Burmese people’s cheerful nature makes us feel better. ‘Mingalabar’ is much more than a greeting. It means ‘have a prosperous day’ and we hear it at the entrance of every pagoda, in the stalls of the Bogyoke market and on the banks of the Inle Lake. With a permanent smile on our faces we enter into what travel agencies call a ‘hidden paradise’. Or that is what is was until only recently. After 25 years of military rule, in 2015 the first free general elections were held, handing a landslide victory to the National League for Democracy, the party led by ‘la Dame’, Aung San Suu Kyi, winner of the Nobel Peace Prize in 1991.\n

Monks take over the city

85% of Burmese people are Buddhists and it is common to see monks and nuns of all ages, with shaved heads, collecting donations first thing in the morning. Many people give more than they can afford because it ‘attracts good karma’.\n

Photo: Dietmar Temps/Shutterstock.com

The first reference to thanaka was in the 14th century, though people have been using it for over 2,000 years.

Since the country’s tentative opening, there has been an increase in the number of visitors – people who seek an authenticity that is in danger of extinction in other South Asian countries. You find it in the unsurfaced lanes and street-food stalls of Anawrahta Road and Chinatown, in Yangon. The people selling bracelets and puppets here even have time to go up to the tourists and ask them their names. They also introduce themselves (Mingalabar!) and patiently wait until their visit has ended to sell them their colourful ‘souvenirs’.
 
Momo, a very young Burmese girl with a low ponytail and a ready smile, follows us from temple to temple in the garden of stupas that makes up Bagan. This archaeological site encompasses 2,230 temples and pagodas that date back to the 11th and 13th centuries. A delight for the eyes, especially at dusk, when the country’s nickname, ‘the land of the golden pagodas’, is fully justified. When we leave, Momo is still there. She offers us an endless assortment of items: enamel boxes, thanaka, teak Buddhas, masks, and even motorbike helmets.\n

Photo: Jimmy Tran /Shutterstock.com

The people who live around Inle Lake are called Intha, which means ‘sons of the lake’.

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Acrobatics in Inle Lake

Floating villages, stupas and thousands of little boats fill this 21-km-long freshwater lake. You can’t fail to notice the skilled fishermen who do their work standing on one leg while using the other to hold the oar or the nets in place.\n

Another way to explore Bagan is to do so in a hot air balloon.

Nearby is Mount Popa, another excursion we can’t miss in Myanmar. We wake up early to reach the top of the extinct volcano, and visit the Buddhist monastery that stands on the summit. We needed to climb the 777 steps cut in the rock and we had to do it barefoot (you are allowed to wear socks for just the first 200 steps). There are tourists, but it’s mainly Burmese pilgrims who make the journey to honour the 35 ‘nats’ or spirits that live on this 1,518-metre mountain.
 
Despite the stifling heat we manage to do it, thanks to the protection of thanaka of course. The ‘mingalabar’ along the way have taken effect: we’re feeling really prosperous.\n

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Photo: Tooykrub/Shutterstock.com

Many children become monks because it is the cheapest way to receive good education.

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Gastronomy

Magazine

GASTRONOMY

Life after 'nigiri'

Japanese cuisine isn’t just rice and raw fish. Pizza, croquettes and Japanese omelette all compete with sushi. Get your chopsticks ready.\n

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The 13 restaurants each with a trio of Michelin stars in Tokyo make the Japanese capital the city with the most three-star establishments in the world—ahead of Paris, with nine. To these 13, you have to add 51 with two stars, and 153 with one. Japanese gastronomy is hot news and about much more than just sushi. While this is the most exported type of Japanese food, it isn’t the most eaten. For the Japanese, it is an exception rather than a rule, since eating quality sushi could cost as much as 300 euros. That is the price on the menu at Jiro (Tokyo), at Ginza metro station, considered the best sushi restaurant in the world.\n

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The latest tokiota to join the list of three-star venues is Kohaku. Its most popular dish has nothing to do with nori seaweed. It is beef shabu shabu in katsuo-dashi, finely sliced fatty cuts in a stock made from dry tuna. A similar version is sukiyaki, which has a stronger flavour. This dish is served in a shallow pot, with vegetable stock, noodles and diced beef. The trick, and what makes it different to shabu shabu, is the sauce. It is made with soy sauce and sugar. Sukiyaki is typical of the regions of Kanto and Kansai, in the centre of the country.\n

Tokyo is the city with the most Michelin stars in the world

Carbohydrates are the main staple of Japanese cuisine. They are the secret to the longevity that has made Japan the country with the second longest life expectancy on the planet. Their version of pizza is called okonomiyaki. While it is round and cut into triangular portions, it has little else in common with the Italian dish. It is a vegetable-based cake that will work with almost any ingredient. There are two versions: Kansai-style and Hiroshima-style.\n

Okonomiyaki comes from the terms knomi (taste) and yaki (griddle).

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Korokkes are also very popular in South Korea.

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In the Kansai region, the dough used to make okonomiyaki (based on flour, water, egg, and yam) is mixed with the rest of the ingredients and then cooked on the griddle. In Hiroshima, however, they don’t add the ingredients to the dough; instead, they add them in layers. All okonomiyakis have one thing in common: the special sauce that covers the dish. It is made with tomato, fruit (normally plums) and soy sauce. In Osaka (Kansai) it is a very popular recipe. Several restaurants in the city are named after this dish, like Okonomiyaki Momiji and Okonomiyaki Chibou.
 
Although Western cooking arrived in Japan in the 16th century, it didn’t become popular until well into the 19th century. Korokkes or Japanese croquettes are little more than a century old. The term comes from the French. They are made from potato purée, onion and an ingredient of your choice (meat, fish or vegetables), battered and fried. Originally an appetiser, they have since become a main dish on the Japanese menu, served with salad and decorated with any sauce.\n

Appetisers in Osaka

The most popular street food in Japan is takoyakis. Originating from Osaka, they are a sort of octopus-stuffed profiterole. Very crunchy, they are normally accompanied by sweet sauce or mayonnaise. Try them at Kuromon Ichiba Market.\n

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At the same time, omuraisu or omurice, also emerged as a result of Western influence. On the outside, it looks like a traditional French omelette, but it hides something inside. It is filled with rice. They are normally seasoned with tomato sauce, or even ketchup. And you can add any other ingredient, like meat or vegetables. At Taimeiken restaurant, Tokyo, they make a version they have called tampopo omurice, in honour of the film directed by Juzo Itami. Omurice is one of the few Japanese dishes you are recommended to eat with a spoon. Does anyone still remember nigiri?\n

Photo: cowardlion/Shutterstock.com

Takoyakis can be served alone or with other ingredients on top.

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The evolution of the croquette

“Today we’re having korokke, and tomorrow as well.” This song, from the early 20th century, shows how popular this snack was in Japanese homes. Today, besides buying them at restaurants and food stands, you can get them in the supermarket, ready to cook at home.\n

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Wellness

Magazine

WELLNESS

The Nordic secret to happiness

Kick off your pursuit of happiness by learning the meaning of ‘hygge,’ ‘lagom’ and ‘koselig.’ The ‘hakuna matata’ for Denmark, Sweden and Norway, the happiest countries in the world.\n

Photo: Kiwisoul / Shutterstock.com

There are over 1,000 fjords in Norway.

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Dining with a Dane

Danes prefer eating in. That’s why they love the ‘Meet the Danes’ project that invites tourists into their home.  The locals prepare a traditional meal, and then hosts and guests talk about their cultures and countries.  A very ‘hygge’ way to spend an evening.\n

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candinavians know the “secret.” Whilst Denmark topped the list in 2016, this year Norway has stolen the throne. That “secret” seems to be based on concepts represented by the terms ‘hygge,’ ‘lagom’ and ‘koselig,’ among others. The first comes from Denmark, the second from Sweden and the third from Norway. One means enjoying the simple things in life, the other means “less is more” and the third is all about “living cosily.” Three concepts that describe embracing the moment.
 
Simple things like curling up under a blanket, snuggling up with your cat, eating chocolate, pairing wine with cheese or hanging out with friends. No pressure, no time constraints. Simply watching the sun set from the beach or settling down with a good book... Things so basic we could all be doing them, but instead, only people in Nordic countries seem to appreciate them. It could be because the UN’s World Happiness Report doesn’t only measure life expectancy and freedom, but also factors in income, social assistance and a lack of government corruption. Although it’s up to us to find harmony, create a chill atmosphere and try to avoid stress. It’s a lifestyle.
 
British author Helen Russel assimilated their attitude and described it in ‘The Year of Living Danishly,’ when she explored Denmark for a year in search of the “secret to happiness.” “I began by writing a column on living Danishly for the Telegraph newspaper in the UK and was then commissioned to write a book on the topic – since then there’s a lot of interest worldwide in how Danes do things differently.” Russel discovered trust is the backbone of their happiness. “79% of Danes trust ‘most people’” and this reduces their anxiety. Hygge is “about being present and celebrating the simple things and practicing gratitude.”
 
The state helps, says Russel, by moving away from consumerism and facilitating work-life balance. You can also feel it in venues. For instance, in restaurants that have embraced the ‘New Nordic Cuisine,’ described as ‘the fastest route to the most pleasure’. It’s about simple, locally sourced, sustainable produce prepared in a traditional way to enhance pleasure. “If a carrot tastes great just as it is, don’t mess about with it too much: just eat the carrot!,’ says the author.\n

Copenhagen’s establishments are the perfect embodiment of the concept. Höst uses traditional Nordic ingredients, including lobster, meat and cheese. Café Glyptoteket wows customers with both its palm trees and exotic plants, as well as its sustainable ingredients. And The Living Room is true to its name: sofas, blankets, pillows and a chimney. You can even feel it on the street, as Instagrammers know only too well. For instance, @tschang says that walking along Magstræde, one of the oldest streets in Copenhagen, “feels like you have gone back in time!”
 
But Danes don’t have a monopoly on happiness. In Sweden, apart from owning stores, Ikea kicked off the ‘Live LAGOM’ project. In addition to sustainable furniture, it promotes a community based on recycling and healthy lifestyles. A concept that pursues ‘just the right amount.’ The popular furnishing giant is actually behind some of the furniture in the Royal Palace, located in Gamla Stan, Stockholm’s old town. This medieval cluster of cobbled streets illustrates the joy found in the little things, such as sipping a cup of hot chocolate at Chokladkoppen, in the centre of the neighbourhood. 
Norway topped the list in 2017. Happiness is easy to understand when you visit Tromsø, 350 kilometres north of the Arctic Circle, a famed viewpoint for stunning Northern Lights. How can you not be happy running under the midnight sun? Or visiting locations as spectacular as Trolltunga, a cliff that juts out about 1,100 metres above lake Ringedalsvatnet. Kjeragbolten is also a source of calm and freedom. This boulder is wedged into a mountain crevasse in a jaw-dropping natural setting. It is all about finding the place and the time, and really seeing what you’re looking at. Taking the time to marvel at the amazing natural landscapes that surround us, and enjoying the simple life. ‘Hygge,’ ‘lagom,’ ‘Koselig’… Or the eternal ‘carpe diem.’\n

Photo: Tuukka Ervasti_imagebank.sweden.se

Café Chokladkoppen is ‘gay-friendly.’

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Photo: Helena Wahlman_imagebank.sweden.se

Happiness has nothing to do with warm temperatures. At times, these countries only get four hours of sun.

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Happy emojis

You can thank Finland for one of this year’s buzzwords: ‘Kalsarikännit,’ which means drinking at home alone in your underwear. In fact, the word is so popular that Finland’s Foreign Affairs Ministry created an emoji for it, and added another 55 to explain feelings that can’t be described with a single word.\n

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Trends

magazine

TRENDS

Around the world in 80 clubs

A British gentleman’s club used to be his second home, and these days Soho House offers its members houses all over the world. Though you don’t need to be a gentleman, you need to be discreet.\n

In the novel by Jules Verne, Phileas Fogg wagered his fortune before his acquaintances at the Reform Club in London, claiming that he would be able to go around the world in 80 days. If the bet were repeated today in one of the Soho House clubs, there would be a clause stipulating that there would have to be a film or documentary, a script or a videogame about the journey.
 
Soho House members are not wealthy aristocrats with stately homes in the country. They are artists, filmmakers, journalists, publicists and technological entrepreneurs. They pay an annual fee (between $1,200 and $2,000) to meet up, work, make new contacts, go to the spa or gym or, above all, to see and be seen in the restaurant or rooftop pool.
 
Like all clubs, Soho House has its house rules. The most important ones are: business suits are prohibited and no one may use their phone for either making calls or taking photos. To become a member you don’t have to be rich and famous. Actually, Kim Kardashian hasn’t been accepted, although she has applied on several occasions, and a couple of years ago 500 Wall Street bigwigs were expelled from Soho House New York because the management wanted to recapture the creative vibe.\n

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Apart from a traditional farmhouse, in Soho Farmhouse there are stables, a boathouse pontoon, a swimming pool, a barn used as a restaurant area and 40 wooden cabins.

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Soho House Barcelona is located in the Gothic Quarter, with views of Port Vell.

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More work, less play

Some Soho Houses have turned into Starbucks, with young people working all day on their laptops. As a result, Nick Jones has had to establish a timetable so people can socialise. He has opened two Soho Works, in London and Los Ángeles, for workaholics.\n

‘In the Soho Houses people need to feel at home, not as if they were in a shareholders’ meeting’, says Nick Jones, the founder. In 1995, the Brit (53) opened the first Soho House at 40 Greek Street, in London. His goal, to modernise the concept of the traditional gentleman’s club and create a home away from home for all kinds of creative people. A club where they could spend the day, and the night if necessary, because some have hotels open to the general public, like the Cecconi’s and Dirty Burger restaurants, and the Cowshed spas.
 
 
Ever since then, he has decided to make it easier for Phileas Fogg to find accommodation on his journey around the world, and he has opened Soho Houses in Barcelona, Istanbul, New York, Chicago, Miami, Toronto, Berlin and Los Angeles. There are also Soho Houses for spending the weekend in the country: Soho Farmhouse, in Oxfordshire, and Babington House, a Georgian mansion in Somerset. Besides Amsterdam, future projects include clubs in Asia, specifically in Tokyo, where Tadao Ando is already designing a building, Mumbai and Hong Kong.\n

Soho House Chicago opened in an old belt Factory in Fulton Market district.

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Jones is very proud of the fact that the Soho House style, this emotional design that creates emotive links with the places, has become the synonym of wellness that all interior designers hope to achieve. In the hotels, the most important feature is the beds, which have to be big and comfortable.
 
This might be the reason - or perhaps because it’s possible to have dinner without having to worry about the people at the next table taking photos - why Hollywood stars choose Soho House to celebrate their birthdays. The people staying in the hotels are also allowed to enter the members-only areas, though they have to respect the house rules: Never publish in Instagram what - or who -  you see in the club.\n

If you would like to join the nearly 60,000 Soho House members from all over the world, or at least be one of the 30,000 applicants on the waiting list, you only need to fill in an application explaining what you do and get references from two members. A committee will assess your application.\n

Do you want to be a member?

The Soho House members are artists, filmmakers, journalists, publicists and technological entrepreneurs.

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Top 6A

MAGAZINE

TOP 6A

Hotel couture

Fashion designers don’t just set the trend on the catwalk. They also leave their signatures on different hotels, rooms and tourist resorts around the world.

Casas de la Piña, Round Hill, Ralph Lauren (Montego Bay, Jamaica)

The 36 Casas de la Piña (pineapple houses) built under the creative direction of the American designer have views of the Caribbean Sea. Stone floors, four-poster beds, and wooden furniture from the exclusive Ralph Lauren Home collection complete the laid-back, tropically inspired décor.

Hotel Notre Dame, Christian Lacroix (Paris, France)

Located in the Latin Quarter, with views of Notre Dame, this could be just one more hotel in the City of Light. But inside, the combination of rich fabrics, artworks, marble finishes, wooden beams and intense colours reveals the distinctive touch of Lacroix.

Palazzo Versace (Gold Coast, Australia)

It opened its doors in 2000, and was the first five-star hotel belonging to a fashion firm. Since then, Paris Hilton and Pamela Anderson have become regular customers while on their journeys to Australia. Decorative opulence inspired by the Versace universe exudes from each of the 200 rooms in the hotel.

Grand Piano Suite, Claridge’s Hotel, Diane Von Furstenberg (London, United Kingdom)

Marble fireplaces, a grand piano and a Japanese toilet are some of the features of the Grand Piano Suite, decorated by Diane Von Fustenberg, for Claridge’s Hotel. In its 178 square metres, bright prints share the limelight with photographs the designer took on her travels, which adorn the walls.

Tortuga Bay, Óscar de la Renta (Punta Cana, Dominican Republic)

The Dominican fashion designer hasn’t forgotten his roots, and the first resort carrying his signature couldn’t be anywhere else. The elegance and simplicity that characterise Óscar de la Renta are reflected in the décor of each of the 13 private villas and 20 suites, located beachside at Tortuga Bay Resort, Punta Cana.

Dior Suite, Hotel St. Regis (New York, United States)

“The tones of grey, pale turquoise and pink will prevail.” The words of Christian Dior. And those are the star colours in the suite named after him at the St. Regis Hotel, New York. With views of Central Park and Fifth Avenue, the décor in this 158 square metre suite takes us to the designer’s Parisian workshop.

Photo: Round Hill Hotel and Villas

Caribbean luxury

Fashion with a view

Ode to opulence

Suite with a seal

Everything stays at home

A piece of Paris in the Big Apple

Travelbeats

Magazine

Travelbeats

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Photo: Duisburg Kontor GmbH/Thomas Mayer

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A walkable roller coaster

It may not be the tallest or the fastest roller coaster, but it is the only walkable roller coaster. Tiger & Turtle-Magic Mountain is ideal for a day out with the kids. Sitting atop a hill in Duisburg (very near Düsseldorf), the structure is more than 220 metres long and 21 metres high. The Tiger & Turtle offers stunning views of rivers Ruhr and Rhine.\n

Photo: gigi_nyc via VisualHunt.com / CC BY-NC-ND

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The best sunset in New York

Twice a year, the sun aligns with the main street grid of Manhattan. This phenomenon is referred to as Manhattanhenge. If you want to snap a photo of Manhattanhenge, the best sunset in New York, you have to be in the right place at the right time. That place is from 14th Street to Upper Manhattan. And the time is in late May and then again in early July. In other words: three weeks before and three weeks after the summer solstice. Twice a year, the sun is aligned with the main street grid of Manhattan, radiating light across the city for ten minutes to the delight of tourists, passers by and shutterbugs.
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Photo: © HUISTEN BOSCH

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Take a trip to the Summer of Love

In 2017 San Francisco celebrates the 50th anniversary of the Summer of Love, and in The Magic Bus Experience they’ve already started to celebrate. ‘It’s not a tour, it’s a trip,’ they say. A trip to the San Francisco of yesterday passing through the San Francisco of today. The star of the route is the iconic neighbourhood of Haight-Ashbury, the epicentre of the hippy movement of the 1960s. Its coloured murals welcome the passengers on this psychedelic bus on a trip full of music, theatre and art.\n

Photo: Dale Johnson

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Having dinner on a rock

It used to be a simple fisherman’s shelter opposite Michanwi Pingwe beach, on the coast of Zanzibar. Nobody could ever imagine that in 2012 it would be turned into a curious restaurant that could seat 45 people. Why is it different? The diners eat on top of a rock, surrounded by the sea. When the tide is low you can reach The Rock Restaurant on foot; but, at high tide, you need a boat. This is when the experience becomes simply marvellous. Savouring freshly fished products straight out of the Indian Ocean that encircles the diner.\n

Photo: Swissôtel Zurich

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Sportspitality: hotels are getting into shape

These days, besides sleeping, you can also live in a hotel. Holiday accommodation has changed, and it now appeals to a new type of guest, one who is seeking to make their stay an extension of their lifestyle. Travellers are increasingly keen to incorporate their personal health and wellbeing habits into their trips. Luxuriously decorated spaces aren't enough, we are looking for a design that can offer functionality and places to revitalise our bodies, minds and spirits, without leaving the hotel. A model has been developed known as sportspitality, where the gym and a healthy lifestyle are at the heart of the leisure experience.\n

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