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Inspiration

The World’s Most Festive Cities to Spend Christmas

EARTH, Inspiration, SHOP, Travel

Christmas is a magical time of year. Cities across the world celebrate in their own way. But no matter how Christmas is celebrated, you’re sure to find fairylights and a festive spirit wherever you go. Whether you’re a fan of the traditional snowy Christmas or prefer to relax in the sun, it’s impossible no to get caught up in the fun. Enjoy Christmas markets, open-air ice skating, and a glass of Glühwein or two in the most festive cities in the world.

Discover our top festive cities to spend Christmas below.

…And loving it in The Ryokan Collection’s Sowaka

EARTH, Inspiration, STAY

Growing up in the seventies for me meant switching on the TV after homework was finished to see Maxwell Smart, Agent 86, pull up in his red Karmann Ghia. That was during the week. On Saturday nights, I’d swap the Chief for M and be thrilled at the escapades of Roger Moore or Sean Connery. Thus, I’m rather partial to the trappings of the spy – the representation of one at least not the drab life of an ASIO employee. So, when I arrived at a tiny entrance in Gion, with a split green cloth fluttering in the breeze I felt a shiver of anticipation about what might actually lurk behind this understated façade.

The Ryokan Collection’s Sowaka

Indulge Your Senses at Sette London

CITY, Inspiration, SHOP

Two of the world’s most cosmopolitan cities come together with the opening of a new restaurant – Sette – at the Bulgari Hotel in London. Bringing authentic Italian food from New York City’s Scarpetta restaurant family, Sette offers an exceptional dinning and social experience. Given its location within the ultra-luxe Buglari Hotel, my expectations of the restaurant are set high. And thankfully, Sette did not disappoint.

Living it Luxe at The Lanesborough London

Inspiration, Lifestyle, STAY

One very confused Uber driver later, I arrive at the Lanesborough Hotel London. With a sigh of relief, I walk toward the entrance clutching my scarf tightly around my neck. The doorman sees me coming. And opens the door for me with a smile. There’s a fire burning just inside. I linger for a moment, letting the heat warm me.

I’d walked passed The Lanesborough when I lived in London in my early 20’s but until now, I’d never been inside. From my position next to the fire, I cast my eyes around the lobby. Regal. It’s truly the only word to describe this hotel. I feel as though I’ve stepped through time. I half expect to see characters from a Jane Austen Novel and historical figures of the Regency period to walk around the corner. Realising I’ve lingered by the fire long enough, I approach the check-in desk.

Glitz and Glam at The Ritz London

Inspiration, Lifestyle, STAY

As I walk up the steps of Green Park Station, the iconic The Ritz London hotel comes into view. There are few hotels in the world that have the capability of stopping you in your tracks. The Ritz London is one. People walk around me quickly, some even huff as they go past the woman who has decided that stopping in the middle of a busy London street is a good idea. I arch my head, looking up toward the pavilion roof and the large green copper lions that adorn it.

Finally, my feet start working. I walk between the archways and the exterior of the Ritz Club and Bar, before turning the corner to the hotel entrance. In a momentary lapse of complete cliché, I start humming ‘Puttin’ on the Ritz’. The doorman smiles warmly at me as I step through the revolving doors, forgetting the song and the world outside The Ritz London.

Flower baths and Balinese bells in a ‘glamboo’ retreat

EARTH, Inspiration, Lifestyle, STAY

On the banks of the Ayung river, bounded on one side by an ancient nutmeg forest and on the other by the village of Mambal, lies Fivelements Retreat Bali, a luxurious eco-sanctuary that puts the glam into bamboo. This is the perfect place to get healthy and go back to nature in comfort and style. 

Sakti Dining Room at Fivelements Healing Center. The soaring roofline, sculpted from bamboo and thatch, resembles a banana leaf, symbol of nourishment.
Image courtesy of Djuna Ivereigh, Fivelements

Ultimate Guide to Luxury Winter Cruising

Adventure, CRUISE, Inspiration, SNOW

Whoever said luxury cruises are best in summer has obviously not read this list of exceptional luxury winter cruises. Time to swap your swimmers for a scarf, and set a course for the world’s most remote regions. Discover the Northern Lights, one of the world’s largest king penguin rookeries and walls of looming glaciers. Dare to be different, cruise in winter.

Image courtesy of Silversea

7 Beautiful Bookstores You Need to Know About

Inspiration, Lifestyle, SHOP

From fighting dragons to navigating the world of an awkward fashion editor’s assistant, books have the power to transport us to another world. But what about the places that house those books? All over the world there are unique and fascinating bookstores with their own story to tell. Discover the most beautiful bookstores in the world, and pick up a rare or exciting book along the way.

The newly open San Angel store of Cafebrería El Péndulo, Mexico City
Image courtesy of Cafebrería El Péndulo, beautiful bookstores
The newly open San Angel store of Cafebrería El Péndulo, Mexico City
Image courtesy of Cafebrería El Péndulo

In the Pink at the Langham Melbourne

Inspiration, Lifestyle, STAY, Travel

I have a room at the Langham. It’s on the twenty-second floor. So, it’s going to be a great stay. Twenty-two is my birth date and my special number along with seven which is the number you get when you add up my whole birthdate. And my room is 2217. Zero seven would be better but 2217 is pretty auspicious.

Image courtesy of Langham Melbourne
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