Category Archive for 'Destinations'

That’s the name of my favorite TV travel series ever. It stars the unlikely pair of mega-chef Mario Batali and Oscar-winner Gwyneth Paltrow along with NY Times food columnist Mark Bitten and the adorable Spanish actress Claudia Bassols. They drive around Spain for thirteen episodes, eating and talking. As each of them have careers to […]

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Urban planning can work, contrary to theorist Jane Jacobs’ shrill screeds, and Battery Park City, on the Hudson River edge of lowest Manhattan, is a heartening example. Since the heart of the development is just four lanes across West Street from Ground Zero, it would surely enrage bin Laden to know that the 14,000-plus residents […]

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Where In The World…?

  Scroll Down For Answers

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Pyrotechnics for Breakfast

Valencia was the last major city to fall to the victorious rebel forces in Spain’s 1936-1939 Civil War.  Before it did, it suffered furious and lengthy bombardments by Franco’s artillery and bombers. Its devastation accounted for the paucity of surviving architectural landmarks encountered since then. That is, up until one of the city’s brilliant native sons, architect […]

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This most Spanish of Spanish cities is cliché made manifest. Its Gothic-Renaissance cathedral ushered in the 15th Century on the site where an Arab mosque once stood. The remains of an earlier Almohad Moorish royal residence were incorporated into the nearby 14th Century fortified palace commissioned by Pedro the Cruel. They loom over the Barrio […]

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Not so long ago, the Financial District, at the far southern tip of the island, saw little more life than crumpled papers scurrying on the wind through the dark canyons of corporate headquarter buildings. It emptied out every Friday when the brokers downed their last martinis and left for home uptown or in the ‘burbs. […]

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On The Edge

We do our big-deal travel in “edge seasons”, taking to the road just before or after the high months of the destinations we covet, when prices are lower and crowds are thinner. That means early December in Florida, when the weather is as good but room rates are as much as 40% lower than after […]

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One of America’s favorite destinations for reasons too obvious to mention, it would seem there is little about the 50th state that might not be known to even a first-time visitor. Check them off – leis, the hula, luaus, resplendent sunsets, beaches of sugary white (or silky black) sands, palms fronds ticking in voluptuous breezes, […]

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That April In Paris

The French Really, Really Don’t Suck The flowering trees in the pocket plazas of the Latin Quarter had burst into voluptuous bloom the day before we arrived, and the willows down by the Seine were leafing out in palest shimmering green. By the end of the week, they were joined by the horse chestnuts and […]

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After a brief look-in at the South Street Seaport, we walked north a few blocks in a blisteringly cold wind to Chinatown.  A little way down Mott Street is Ping (22 Mott St., 212-602-9988), a seafood emporium popular with several recent mayors.  Downstairs is a relatively formal dining room, while upstairs is a noisy but orderly […]

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