Posts Tagged ‘editor’s picks’
The Dorchester is in a class of its own. One of the best hotels in all of Europe, this five-star hotel in the heart of London’s Mayfair district overlooks Hyde Park, and is the perfect destination for an extra special occasion, or just an ultra luxury retreat. Read on to find out why The Dorchester has earned our vote as 2013’s #1 hotel in the world.
We’ve stayed in some pretty darn stylish hotels this year, from urban city retreats to ultra modern design hotels, to charming B&B’s, sleek boutique luxury hotels, swanky 5-star chains, and countryside manor houses. Out of all of them, here are our top 5 choices from 2012:
Staying in an Irish manor house in Ireland is an absolute must if you’re exploring the Irish countryside. One of the quintessential Irish experiences, they can be found speckled throughout the countryside and offer little pockets of homey luxury. I can’t begin to describe how truly beautiful this place is!
Imagine slumbering way up high in a tree amid a soundtrack of birds and windows that show off sky. Well you can do just that at the Treehotel, located near the arctic circle in the tiny Swedish village of Harads. A town with a population of only 600, this is the perfect place to reconnect with nature in a truly unique way.
It’s no secret that Seattle is a gourmet wonderland for foodies. Emphasizing fresh local ingredients, Pacific Northwest chefs are constantly seeking creative combinations of ingredients. Although you’ll fare pretty well in Seattle eating wherever you happen to be once your stomach rumbles, there is definitely something wonderful about staying at a hotel with a restaurant good enough to be a destination itself.
The following foodie hot spots combine luxurious hospitality with gourmet prowess:
Hotel Andra & Lola
For those who love modern design, Hotel Andra is a cozy refuge filled with chic minimalist furniture and trendy design accents evocative of the Pacific Northwest. Located in Seattle’s hip Belltown district, Hotel Andra sits at the epicenter of celebrity chef Tom Douglass’ culinary empire. Tempting aromas of Greek and North African treats waft though the hotel’s sleek Scandinavian-inspired lobby from Douglass’ restaurant Lola. The perfect spot for a late night snack or cocktails, Lola also serves mouth-watering spreads like kalamata~fig and Kopanisti~pistachio all day. Across the street are Douglass’ Dahlia Lounge and Dahlia Bakery, famous for their triple coconut creme pie, and around the corner you’ll discover sizzling pizzas at Douglass’ Serious Pie.
Have you ever fantasized about a world composed entirely of sweets? Will Cotton’s delicious artwork brings that dream world to life, featuring classically painted beauties lounging on cotton candy clouds and mouthwatering landscapes filled with candy canes, chocolate, and tempting sweets that depict a sugar-fest dreamland.
Cotton begins with elaborate maquettes made from real sweets and baked goods (yum!) as a reference for his paintings. In addition to painting his luscious canvases, Cotton also art directed Katy Perry’s California Gurls music video where Katy, clad in sweets, prances through a 3-D version of one of Cotton’s painted wonderlands. Cotton also painted Katy lounging on cotton candy clouds for the album cover of Teenage Dream. Amazingly, the paper the artwork is printed on is even infused with a cotton candy fragrance, creating a wonderful treat for the senses.
“I’ve always liked sweets. Still do. It just seemed like the most apt metaphor, visually, for what I’m trying to talk about, primarily because sweets are something that’s out there for pleasure only… so that, to me, makes them exactly the right landscape situation to talk about.”
—Will Cotton via GQ.
Roller derby is sweeping the country by storm and derby counterculture is in turn ballooning, creating an entire empire centered upon strong, sexy women. Armed with clever names and flashy outfits, these tough all-girl squads are kicking some serious butt.
Culture Vixen’s Gayle Wheatley tracked down Sandra Frame, storyboard and animation artist by day, who moonlights as the mighty Tara Armov of the LA Derby Dolls by night. In an exclusive in-depth interview, Tara shares insight into her two passions: skating and art.
Gayle Wheatley (GW): Which came first, art or roller derby, and how did you get your start in each? Which of these two passions is closer to your heart?
Tara Armov (TA): The art definitely came first! I’ve drawn for the majority of my life. Derby came along about seven years ago.
It’s hard to say which is closer to my heart as both have had a profound effect on me in different ways but sometimes over the same issues. Being insecure yet able to express myself through either art or derby are reoccurring thoughts and feelings in my life.
GW: What inspires you as an artist? How has roller derby played a part in your art?
TA: I think both art and derby let me express emotions and feelings that I can’t do any other way. I find inspiration in vibrant colors and dynamic compositions in art, usually figurative in one form or another. Derby just boosts what I already get inspired by to begin with.
Conflict Kitchen is a restaurant in Pittsburgh that only serves food from countries the US is in conflict with. Started as a special project by John Peña, Jon Rubin, and Dawn Weleski, Conflict Kitchen serves take-out style food, and the entire restaurant identity changes every four months to highlight a new country. The first iteration of the project, Kubideh Kitchen, dishes up Iranian cuisine. For just $5, you can try a kubideh sandwich, a national dish in Iran consisting of spiced ground beef wrapped in homemade barbari bread with basil, mint, and onion. All this comes packaged in a custom wrapper with interviews from Iranians on a variety of subjects ranging from poetry to politics.
Wild Yam Dreaming
I was absolutely awe-struck by the beautiful interplay of colors and sophisticated simplicity of brushwork in this amazing painting by Emily Kame Kngwarreye. One of the most prominent contemporary Australian aboriginal artists of all time, Emily started out working with batik and only got into painting much later in life when she was nearly 80 years old. Breaking from the predominant Aboriginal painting style of the time, her style changed several times over a short time span as she experimented with lines, dots, brushes, and color in new ways, paving her own unique path.
“Through this painting, we are transported to the center of Australia, to a flat, windswept settlement where outsiders might see only an expanse of red dirt. Our guide is an eighty-five-year-old woman whose eyes are full of observations and who has years of experience painting bodies for ceremonies. Emily Kame Kngwarreye discovered the lush fluidity of acrylics in 1988, launching her extraordinarily prolific career that is full of bravado in handling paint.” —Seattle Museum of Art
Photo by Gayle Wheatley
Rune Guneriussen is a talented Norwegian artist who produces incredible installations composed of man-made objects placed outdoors all across Norway. Isolated in nature, most of Rune’s work is presented through photography, although he recently created a live installation for the Nuit Blanche nighttime art festival which took place in Paris last year. Rune’s photographs of decorative lamps softly illuminating isolated snow-blanketed landscapes are absolutely stunning. They evoke a feeling of serene silence and contemplation while casting a magical, storybook ambiance.
“As an artist he believes strongly that art itself should be questioning and bewildering as opposed to patronizing and restricting. As opposed to the current fashion he does not want to dictate a way to the understanding of his art, but rather indicate a path to understanding a story.”
[ via runeguneriussen.no ]
They Draw and Cook is a blog featuring inspired illustrated recipes and food art. Cooked up by professional illustrators Nate Padavick and Salli Swindell, the idea blossomed while the two were on a family vacation and Nate threw together a pasta dish based on a meal he once had in Berlin. Said dish included figs. Salli bought the figs. She began painting them. Food fused with art. From there the pair set out to create an illustrated recipe book, which also became a blog featuring yummy artwork by talented artists all around the world. A new delicious post is added daily and there’s now a separate Kids Draw and Cook blog for aspiring food lovin’ artists 16 and under. Bon Appétit!
[ via theydrawandcook.com ]