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App Smart: Video Feature: Navigating London From Your Smartphone

Written By Unknown on Kamis, 16 April 2015 | 17.36

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App Smart | London Calling

App Smart | London Calling

Kit Eaton reviews several apps to make planning your trip to London easy and help you navigate around this popular tourist destination.

By Kit Eaton and Dallas Jensen on Publish Date April 15, 2015.

LONDON'S history, theaters, pubs and shops are great reasons to visit. And now, navigating the streets and attractions is much easier because of the bevy of apps devoted to the city.

Getting around in London usually means diving into the murk of the London Underground train system. The Underground is usually faster than walking or the bus, but is also vast and confusing. MxData's Tube Map, which is free on iOS and Android, can help tourists make the most of this transport option.

Tube Map is the neatest guide to the Underground that I have found. It shows a map of the Underground's network, and you can search for a particular station and route your trip. You can also view an overlay of nearby railway stations if you plan on traveling outside London, and Tube Map will show which stations you can easily walk between. When it's connected to a data network, the app alert you to delays and can even show planned service shutdowns. Tube Map is slick and easy to use.

For seeing some of London's sights, a good place to turn is Time Out, also free for iOS, Android and Windows Phone. It is a digital magazine, with sections about the week's events and great places to eat, and promotions on special offers for shows, events, workshops and more. You can search Time Out's database to find events, pubs, museums and galleries. Each attraction's entry contains a brief text description, comments from other users and useful data like a map, phone number and event times.

Time Out is easy to use, with clear navigation and straightforward menus, and it has some nice extras like the option to call an Uber car from inside the app. Perhaps its only downside is that it's so full of information you may fear missing out on something. Also, sometimes the flood of data makes it hard to remember which events or places you liked best.

A great alternative to Time Out is Hype, which is free on iOS. It has a more playful design than Time Out, and focuses on fresh things to see and do, rather than on London's traditional tourist locations. It has entries in sections corresponding to regions of London, from Central to the North or South. Each section contains a long curated list of events like art shows, and of newer bars and restaurants. Tapping on an entry shows its location, when it's open, and extras like contact information or pricing.

Hype works smoothly and its image-centric design and easy navigation make it fun to use. The only tiny complaint I have is that I keep pressing the prominent "?" button thinking it will take me to a search page instead of a feedback form for improving the app. Still, if you're interested in exploring London off the beaten track and perhaps trying new things that Londoners would, then Hype is definitely for you.

London's a walkable city, and the JiTT London guide does a great job of directing you through the streets while pointing out landmarks and explaining history as you walk. It's like a personal audio guidebook, and it is GPS-enabled so its words and on-screen map help you get from Point A to Point B in real time. You can choose to hear about specific locations, like Westminster Abbey, or take one of the app's walks through London. Tapping on a pin on a map tells you more about that place both on-screen and in audio. The app has clear menus and helpful hints. I love the way you can customize the tours to fit your schedule and avoid places you don't want to see. Though the app is free on iOS and Android, the complete version including all the audio guides costs $5.

History is everywhere in London, and one of the more interesting ways to experience it is to use Museum of London: Streetmuseum. This app places lots of well-known or historical photos, drawings and paintings in context on a map — a tap on each will reveal a little about what you're looking at. The best trick is its 3-D view; you hold your phone's camera up to a street scene, and the app displays a historic image to match the view of 21st-century London you're actually seeing. Very neat, and the app's free for iOS and Android.

Just remember to check the weather app on your smartphone before you head out to explore — London's fickle-weather reputation is well earned.

Quick Call

Flynx is an interesting new Android app that promises to speed access to websites from inside other apps. When you tap a web link inside any app, instead of opening a browser, Flynx auto-loads the web content in the background where you can quickly get to it by tapping on an icon. Flynx is free.

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36 Hours: What to Do in Left Bank, Paris

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36 Hours in Left Bank, Paris

36 Hours in Left Bank, Paris

From the Latin Quarter's alleys to the grand boulevards of St.-Germain-des-Prés, the Left Bank's classic charms can be found in cafes, museums and shops.

By Fritzie Andrade, Max Cantor, Chris Carmichael, Jake Cigainero, Stefania Rousselle and Aaron Wolfe on Publish Date April 15, 2015. Photo by Chris Carmichael for The New York Times.

While the Right Bank of Paris has seen internationalism and the irrepressible rise of "bobos" (the Parisian form of hipsters) change its landscape in recent years, the Left Bank has been able to preserve the soul of French capital. Walk through the Latin Quarter's crooked cobblestone corridors or down the grand plane-tree-lined boulevards of St.-Germain-des-Prés and, more than once, you'll think you're inside a black-and-white Robert Doisneau photo. Cafe terraces, limestone buildings and nattily dressed locals create a timeless tableau. That's not to say that Paris south of the dividing Seine is immune to change. But at least for now, the classic charms outweigh the contemporary influences.


1. Appetite Awakener | 3:30 p.m.

The Left Bank is home to cultural, fashion and artistic riches, but one of the best ways to immerse yourself in French culture is with food. Paris by Mouth, a five-year-old foodie website, offers three-hour small-group tours, including the popular Taste of St.-Germain (95 euros, or about $100 at $1.05 to the euro), which will prime you for the weekend's culinary delights. Among the half-dozen or so stops are Poilâne Bakery, which has been churning out the same large wheels of tangy sourdough from its basement wood-burning oven for 83 years; Le Marché Couvert (or the covered market), where moneyed locals scoop up their saucisson, fresh milk and seasonal produce; and Pierre Hermé, France's "Picasso of Pastries," which sells cakes and macarons almost too pretty to eat. Along with the tour's treats, you're fed historical and cultural bits that will help you navigate the local food scene on your own.

2. To the Top | 7:30 p.m.

You can't visit Paris and ignore the grandest dame of them all. The Eiffel Tower, a majestic 1,063 feet of latticed iron work planted firmly on the flat green Champ de Mars near the Seine, is the tallest structure in the city. Two elevators will whoosh you to the top (or, if you're feeling dauntless, tackle the 1,665 steps; 15.50 euros and 5 euros, respectively) and by now it will be l'heure bleue, that magical time in the evening when the whole city is suffused in an ethereal light. If you linger long enough taking in the panorama, you'll also be treated to the top-of-the-hour light show, when 20,000 bulbs affixed to every side of the tower twinkle and dance for five mesmerizing minutes.

3. Drama With Dinner | 10 p.m.

Enjoy the relative tranquillity as you amble through the Anglicized Seventh Arrondissement to the Basque restaurant — the first one to open in Paris, more than 80 years ago — Chez L'Ami Jean. Inside the tightly packed dimly lit restaurant you'll be elbow-to-elbow with boisterous locals and tourists feasting the night away. As you ponder the 78-euro prix fixe menu, watch the theatrics (and occasional temper) of the chef, Stéphane Jégo, through the kitchen window as he perfects dishes such as mackerel in leek vinaigrette and pork belly with oysters and rabbit. Save room for dessert. The restaurant's legendary rice pudding, accompanied by salted butter caramel and crunchy meringues, comes in a bowl large enough to feed four and may forever change the way you think of the oft-maligned treat.

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Explore street view, find things to do in the Left Bank and sign in to your Google account to save your map.


4, Avant-Garde Art | 11 a.m.

If national museums like the Musée d'Orsay are too large, and St. Germain's galleries too small for your art appreciation fix, you'll love the scale of Paris's fondations and the stellar exhibitions they attract. The Cartier Fondation and Fondation Henri Cartier-Bresson, which are within walking distance of each other on opposite sides of the famed Montparnasse Cemetery, are sized to offer just the right dose of the familiar and the cutting edge. Exhibitions rotate several times a year, with the Cartier — housed in a light-filled, contemporary Jean Nouvel building — bringing acclaimed talent such as the Japanese pop artist Takeshi Kitano and the Australian sculptor Ron Mueck. The Cartier-Bresson, smaller and more modest, concentrates on photographers like Walker Evans and Saul Leiter.

5. Lunch Worth Waiting for | 1:30 p.m.

Unless waiting for bread at the boulangerie, queuing for food is not something Parisians do. But they make an exception for Le Comptoir du Relais, and so should you. On a sloping corner in St. Germain, the sliver of a restaurant is, in fact, most noticeable for the line of hungry people waiting for the first-come-first-served weekend service from the chef Yves Camdeborde, who's often credited with starting the "bistronomy" trend currently rocking the Right Bank. This blend of a casual bistro environment and gastronomic cooking reveals its magic with simple yet otherworldly dishes like a creamy-crunchy smoked salmon croque monsieur (10 euros) or even a seasonal salad (13 euros), heaped with at least 10 kinds of vegetables and dusted with fine bits of crunchy onion.

6. Oh, La Mode | 3 p.m.

Since you're in the heart of a bustling shopping district, why not put those credit cards to use for some French treasures? (Be sure to ask salesclerks for VAT refunds.) Alexandra Sojfer makes the most ornate umbrellas and walking sticks you can imagine, with details like carved wood animal-head handles and taffeta parasols adorned with Swarovski crystals. Deyrolle appears to be a modest gardening store at street level, but ascend to the second floor to find an exotic emporium filled with rhino heads, panther skeletons, tortoise shells and all manner of taxidermy. And leave it to the French to peddle even candles with pedigrees. Cire Trudon, established in 1643, once supplied King Louis XIV's court with candles. Today, you can take home your own piece of French history of sorts: a burning bust of Marie Antoinette or Napoleon.

7. Terrace Views | 6 p.m.

Parisians dine later, so you have the excuse to indulge in one of their prime pastimes: people watching from a cafe terrace. Snatch one of the coveted seats at Café de Flore, where figures such as Simone de Beauvoir and Picasso once sipped, puffed and pontificated, and watch the coiffed regulars come in and kiss-kiss the maître d'hôtel while harried waiters in long white aprons weave and wend, delivering trays of aperitifs. Try a bitter Campari (9.80 euros) or a sweet kir, white wine with a splash of cassis (9.5).

Photo Sweetbreads at Semilla. Credit Chris Carmichael for The New York Times

8. Nouveau Cooking | 8 p.m.

Neither trendy nor nostalgic, Semilla manages the perfect balance of nouveau Parisian cooking. Opened in 2012 by the international team of Juan Sanchez and Drew Harré, the sparse but sophisticated restaurant (marble tabletops, concrete floors, wood-beamed ceilings) attracts an urbane clientele from the neighborhood's galleries and bourgeois homes. The menu is organized into categories like "raw," "fried" and "from the oven," with crowd favorites like shiitake mushrooms, browned in toasted sesame oil (6 euros) and the côte de boeuf for two, which is presented tableside before being taken to the open kitchen, where it's sliced and then returned with mashed potatoes and horseradish cream (76 euros).


9. Get Fresh | 10 a.m.

Every Sunday from 9 a.m. until 1:30 p.m., the air on Boulevard Raspail, between the Rue Cherche-Midi and Rue de Rennes, fills with the tantalizing smell of sautéing onions. It's the onion galettes — shredded onion, potato and cheese (2.50 euros) — frying at one of the dozens of stands at the Marché Biologique Raspail. This organic market has been a neighborhood jewel for 26 years. Stroll by, admire, even ogle, but do not touch the beautiful displays. Once you've decided among the loaves of bread chockablock with dried fruit; towers of chevre and Comté cheese; baskets of fresh herbs and lettuces; honeys, jams and various other edible delights, the vendors will be happy to help you.

10. ­Sunday Stroll | Noon

No longer are the Luxembourg Gardens the only nearby spot of green where you can eat your market loot. Les Berges, a nearly 1.5-mile stretch along the Seine reserved for pedestrians, debuted in 2013, so what was once a diesel-fume-choked highway is now thronged with strolling families, joggers, bicyclists and skaters. Start at the Pont de l'Alma entrance to the west and make your way past the rotating art exhibitions, climbing walls and stations for hopscotch and paddleball. Once you've arrived at the eastern end, near Musée d'Orsay, climb the wood-plank bleacher seats for a view of the boats chugging along the river.

11. Sweet Ending | 2 p.m.

There's always room in the belly (or in your carry-on) for French chocolate. And, seeing as St. Germain is the unofficial center of the chocolate universe, counting at least a dozen renowned chocolatiers, make a final sweep of the neighborhood's offerings, winding up in a cobblestone alley at Pierre Cluizel's Un Dimanche à Paris. This boutique is also an 8,600-square-foot salon de thé/restaurant/lounge devoted to high-end chocolate. A spot of the pastry chef Nicolas Bacheyre's chocolat chaud, served warm, not hot, in traditional Limoges porcelain, is guaranteed to send you off in classic style.

Where to Stay

Built in 1827, L'Hotel (13 rue des Beaux Arts, Sixth, 33-1-44-41-99-00; l-hotel.com) is the last place that Oscar Wilde resided, and holds a special place in Parisians' hearts. The discreet and historic five-star hotel has 20 glamorous rooms, including a nearly 600-square-foot penthouse with a terrace a restaurant bar and hammam pool in the basement. Rates range from 295 to 1,050 euros.

Tucked behind the newly renovated St.-Sulpice church, the six-story Hotel Recamier (3 bis, Place Saint-Sulpice, Sixth, 33-1-43-26-04-89; hotelrecamier.com) is quiet, chic and sophisticated. The interior designer Jean-Louis Deniot made each of the 24 rooms, ranging from small to spacious, unique. But they all share a soothing, neutral palette. Rates from 280 to 495 euros.

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25 Injured as Asiana Jet Skids Off Runway in Japan

Photo A plane from the South Korean carrier Asiana Airlines after it skidded off the runway this week at Hiroshima Airport in Japan. Credit Yomiuri Shimbun/European Pressphoto Agency

SEOUL, South Korea — South Korea said Wednesday that it would review the qualifications of all the pilots of Airbus A320 passenger jets flown by carriers based in the country, one day after one of the airplanes skidded off a runway while landing at Hiroshima Airport in Japan.

Twenty-five people had minor injuries in the accident on Tuesday, according to the South Korean carrier Asiana Airlines. The Airbus A320, operated by Asiana, approached the runway so low that it clipped a 20-foot-tall wireless communication tower that stood almost 1,000 feet before the runway.

Two years ago, another Asiana plane, a Boeing 777, crashed at San Francisco International Airport after its tail touched a sea wall as the jet came in too low. The accident, said to have been caused by pilot error, left three people dead and more than 180 injured.

Japanese news reports about Tuesday's accident included photographs that showed damage to the communications tower, which was used to send signals to incoming planes. Part of the tower's antenna was found stuck in the plane's landing gear, the reports said.

On Wednesday, the South Korean Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport called in the top managers of all South Korean airline companies to instruct them to bolster airplane maintenance and pilot training. It also told reporters that it would conduct a review of all Airbus A320 pilots for job suitability, especially checking their ability to deal with emergencies.

Yeo Hyung-ku, vice minister of transport, said that airline companies needed to consider the mental state of pilots as a potential cause of an accident, in an apparent allusion to the pilot at the controls of the Germanwings jetliner that crashed into the French Alps last month.

All 11 Airbus A320 jets in South Korea are operated by Asiana and its affiliate, Air Busan.

The Asiana plane involved in the Hiroshima accident was carrying 73 passengers and eight crew members from Incheon International Airport in South Korea.

It careered off the tarmac and rotated almost 180 degrees before coming to a halt on the grass beside the runway. All the passengers were evacuated using escape chutes.

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Delta Posts Record Net Income; Reduces International Service

Photo In the first quarter, Delta reported net income of $746 million, up from $213 million in the period last year. Credit Koji Sasahara/Associated Press

Delta Air Lines said on Wednesday that it would cut some of its international flights in coming months as the rising value of the dollar eroded revenue abroad.

Delta reported its highest first-quarter earnings and said it would continue to post record profit margins in the next quarters as it benefited from falling oil prices.

In the first quarter, Delta reported net income of $746 million, up from $213 million in the period last year. Its operating margin in the quarter was 14.9 percent, a level seldom seen in the airline business, largely because of a drop in fuel costs.

The airline, based in Atlanta, said it planned to cut some winter flights as foreign sales weakened. Because of growth in domestic service, however, Delta expects its total capacity in the fourth quarter to remain flat.

The reductions in international service include 15 to 20 percent trims in service from Japan in the fourth quarter, 15 percent to Brazil and 15 to 20 percent to Africa, India and the Middle East. Delta also said it would suspend service to Moscow for the winter.

Delta is leading the fight to restrict flights from the three giant Middle East carriers into the United States. The Obama administration has said it will review the complaint and this week the State, Commerce and Transportation Departments opened the docket for public comments.

Richard Anderson, Delta's chief executive, said in a conference call on Wednesday that the federal government should first tackle the question of state support from the United Arab Emirates and Qatar to Emirates, Etihad Airlines and Qatar Airways before considering more liberal trade deals with Asia or Europe.

He compared the move to restrict flights from the three Gulf carriers to dealing with Chinese steel dumping or tackling foreign agricultural subsidy cases. Unlike such trade deals, however, open skies agreements do not fall under World Trade Organization rules that ban government subsidies.

Delta shares rose to $44.10, up 2.4 percent, in midday trading as investors welcomed the focus on keeping limits on capacity and the continuing policy of returning cash to shareholders.

The announced service cuts amount to 3 percent of Delta's international capacity.

"This is music to the ears of many investors who believe Delta should not overgrow capacity," Helane Becker, an airline analyst with Cowen & Company, wrote in a research note. "The international markets have been a drag on results recently."

Delta has become a cash-generating machine under Mr. Anderson. Delta said it had made $511 million in free cash flow in the quarter. It paid back $75 million in dividends and bought back $425 million worth of its own shares. It also made $900 million in pension contributions.

Delta expects its operating margin to be 16 to 18 percent in the second quarter.

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Roundup: 10 Hotels in Europe That Make You Feel at Home

Written By Unknown on Rabu, 15 April 2015 | 17.35

Photo The Aria Hotel in Budapest, around the corner from St. Stephen's Basilica, has a musical theme and a rooftop bar.

Taking up temporary residency on the quiet lanes and public squares of Europe offers the sort of civic intimacy that often eludes mere sightseers. Location and a connection to community distinguish each of the following 10 hotels, all of which offer a strong sense of place, both outside and in.


Hotel des Galeries in Brussels

The new Hotel des Galeries shares the narrow Rue des Bouchers, once butchers' row, with a jumble of restaurants and cafe terraces. Its own Belgian restaurant opens onto the adjacent Galeries Royales Saint-Hubert, a 19th-century glass-roofed shopping arcade designed in homage to the Italian Renaissance. Inside the hotel, 23 rooms overlook the elegant passageway, or surrounding rooftops near the central Grand Place. Red drapes and modern furniture lend subtle drama to the white-walled minimalist rooms. From 130 euros or about $136 at $1.05 to the euro; hoteldesgaleries.be.

Aria Hotel Budapest

Just around the corner from the grand St. Stephen's Basilica, Aria Hotel Budapest, which opened last month, adopts a musical design. From the owners of the Library Hotel in New York, Aria inhabits a former 19th-century bank with 49 rooms, each designed in the spirit of jazz, contemporary, classical or opera scores, with a music library loaded on in-room iPads. Guests can ogle the domed basilica from the hotel's rooftop High Note Sky Bar, featuring a garden terrace and a Hungarian farm-to-table restaurant. Rooms from €216, including breakfast; ariahotelbudapest.com.

Grand Amore Hotel and Spa in Florence, Italy

Two blocks from the Duomo and steps from the Piazza della Santissima Annunziata, anchored by a Renaissance-era orphanage, the new 11-room Grand Amore Hotel and Spa, above, is the latest boutique property from the Ricci Collection, operators of other small hotels in Florence. Rooms feature tufted headboards, marble-clad bathrooms and vintage black-and-white photos from the Florentine photo company Fratelli Alinari. Management promises soundproof rooms, and a small spa with a steam room and Jacuzzi for post-passeggiata relaxation. Rooms from €207, including breakfast; grandamorehotel.com.

Hotel Valverde in Lisbon

On the grand Avenida da Liberdade, Lisbon's Champs-Élysées, the Hotel Valverde, opened in September, aims to channel a more peaceful era, when the promenade was a public garden. Attractions include a garden where tea and drinks are served, a living-room-like lounge and a small outdoor pool. Its 25 bedrooms, painted in rich colors intended to inspire relaxation, mix vintage paintings and contemporary furniture. Its fittingly boutique restaurant, seating 27, serves Portuguese fare. Rooms from €170, including breakfast; valverdehotel.com.

Photo A bed at La Réserve Paris Hotel and Spa. Credit La Reserve Paris Hotel & Spa

La Réserve Paris Hotel and Spa

Opened in January on quiet Avenue Gabriel, between the fashionable Faubourg Saint-Honoré and the Champs-Élysées, down the street from the Élysée Palace gardens, the new La Réserve Paris Hotel and Spa conjures turn-of-the-20th-century elegance in a period home once owned by Pierre Cardin. The designer Jacques Garcia oversaw the renovation, which features silk on the walls, velvet drapes and parquet floors in its 40 rooms, partly furnished in antiques. Amenities include an indoor swimming pool, three-treatment-room spa, orange garden and upscale French restaurant. Rooms from €750, including breakfast; lareserve-paris.com.

Emblem Hotel in Prague

Designed in Art Deco style, with a lobby clad in richly patterned brown marble, the recently opened Emblem Hotel is on a side street near Old Town Square. Most of its 59 rooms, one of which is shown above right, are decorated in soft neutrals. Some offer French doors that open onto the street. Its restaurant turns into a steakhouse at dinner, and a series of basement rooms are a private club for guests with games and tablet computers. A spa occupies the top two floors, where an outdoor terrace with a Jacuzzi offers views to Prague Castle across the river. Rooms from €250, including breakfast; emblemprague.com.


Lesic Dimitri Palace in Korcula, Croatia

Built in the 18th century as the bishop's palace in the heart of medieval Korcula, on an island in the Adriatic midway between Dubrovnik and Split, the Lesic Dimitri Palace has five apartment-like suites. Ranging from one to three bedrooms, they include kitchens and are each decorated after a different Marco Polo-inspired destination: Venice, India, China, Arabia and Ceylon. On the edge of the walled town of tiny lanes and terra-cotta-tiled houses, the hotel offers views of the sea, and its restaurant features seating on a terrace atop the walls. Open April 1 to Oct. 31; doubles from €395, including breakfast; lesic-dimitri.com.

Photo Abadia Retuerta LeDomaine in Spain inhabits a 12th-century abbey. Credit Courtesy of Abadía Retuerta LeDomaine

Abadia Retuerta LeDomaine in Sardon de Duero, Spain

Set amid a 1,730-acre vineyard and farm, Abadia Retuerta LeDomaine on the Duero River near Valladolid, 135 miles north of Madrid, inhabits a 12th-century abbey. Converted into a hotel in 2012, its 22 rooms are considerably less monastic now, some with four-poster beds, garden terraces or wood beams, and all with vineyard views (another eight will open in July). Its restaurant, Refectorio, occupies the abbey's former dining hall and recently earned its first Michelin star. A modern wine-themed spa, built underground to keep from clashing with the historic estate, is set to open in the summer. Rooms from €370, including breakfast; ledomaine.es.

Y Talbot in Tregaron, Wales

On the town square in Tregaron, a convenient base for exploring the Cambrian Mountains or the western coast, the 17th-century Y Talbot inn, above, offers board and bed in a stone-constructed pub with nine rooms. The rooms were recently updated with bright décor, and while each is distinct in layout, several offer walkout access to or balcony views over a rear garden. The pub champions local and sustainable ingredients, and the bar features Welsh cask ales brewed nearby. Doubles from 110 pounds, or about $159 at $1.44 to the pound, including breakfast; ytalbot.com.

Hollmann Beletage in Vienna

In a hidden courtyard in Vienna's historic center, just a few blocks from St. Stephen's Cathedral, the Hollmann Beletage houses 25 rooms in a former 19th-century noble's home. Period walls conceal lively contemporary interiors, with splashes of orange, its signature hue, in everything from throw blankets to sheer drapes that cover glass-walled showers. Public areas include a garden terrace, eight-seat cinema and game room. Its contemporary Austrian restaurant, the Hollmann Salon, sits on a Baroque courtyard known as Heiligenkreuzerhof around the corner. Rooms from €159, including breakfast; hollmann-beletage.at.

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In Transit: The Kardashians Show Support for Armenia

Photo Kim Kardashian, left, visited the Armenian Genocide Museum on Friday. She was joined by her sister, Khloé, third from left. Credit Karen Minasyan/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

The Republic of Armenia has received what could be its biggest tourism boost to date: a visit from the Kardashians.

In what was more than just a whimsical romp through the South Caucasus, the reality television stars and other family members made several historically significant stops over the last week during their first visit to the ancestral homeland of Robert Kardashian, the patriarch of the family who died in 2003. The trip was chronicled on Kim Kardashian West's Instagram account, which has nearly 30 million followers, and her sister Khloé's, with 19 million.

Armenia, by contrast, has no Instagram account for travelers.

But the Kardashians more than made up for that. "Long hair don't care," Ms. West wrote in a post just before she and her sister headed to the Mother Armenia statue in the capital city, Yerevan, the many steps to which were no challenge for her strappy high-heeled sandals.

Joined by two cousins, the four women later sat down for a face-to-face with Prime Minister Hovik Abrahamyan to discuss the centennial commemoration of the mass killings of Armenians by the Ottoman Turks during the early 20th century that some, including Pope Francis, have labeled "genocide."

"It was an honor to meet the Prime Minister of Armenia, Hovik Abrahamyan, who expressed how proud they are that we are proud Armenians and we have not forgotten our roots!#NeverForget," Ms. West posted on Instagram.

On Friday, the sisters, in similarly silky jumpsuits, were joined by Kanye West, Ms. West's husband, for "an emotional day" at the Armenian Genocide Museum and Institute at the Tsitsernakaberd Memorial Complex, she reported on social media. As a gift, the sisters and their families were presented with a land grant for property in the Vahakni Residential Community in Yerevan.

Saturday found the entire group, including North West, Mr. and Mrs. West's toddler daughter, in Gyumri, a small, dilapidated town outside the capital, where Robert Kardashian's ancestors were believed to have lived, E! Online reported.

And not ones to exit a room (or a country, it seems) quietly, the group said goodbye on Sunday evening with a supposedly impromptu concert by Mr. West and local musicians on the banks of Swan Lake, Ms. West wrote on Facebook. The performance was soon shut down, according to US Weekly, after Mr. West jumped into the lake and hundreds of fans followed.

While the Wests were making a splash in Yerevan, another famous face was drawing attention to Armenia's dark history.

Photo Kim Kardashian and Kanye West, with their daughter, North, at the Geghard monastery in Armenia. Credit Reuters

During a Mass at St. Peter's Basilica at the Vatican on Sunday, Pope Francis incited the diplomatic furor of Turkey by calling the killing of more than a million Armenians during World War I "the first genocide of the 20th century." Serzh Sargsyan, the Armenian president, was in attendance at the Mass.

Turkey, which denies the killings were genocide, has recalled its ambassador to the Vatican in protest. That did not make either Kardashians' Instagram feed.

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Where to Go Now: What’s New in Milan, Paris and Manchester, England

Photo The Tree of Life in the construction zone of the 2015 World Expo in Milan, which begins May 1. Credit Antonio Calanni/Associated Press

A dozen different European destinations, including Macedonia and the Faroe Islands, made our list of 52 Places to Go in 2015. And since the list was published in January, a few of them have enjoyed the opening of cultural centers and exhibitions. Milan, which topped our list, is gearing up for one large event beginning in May. Here's a rundown of highlights this spring.


Is Milan ready for the 2015 World Expo? The six-month event, including 60 pavilions sponsored by more than 130 nations and organizations, begins May 1, even if, as Reuters reported, the centerpiece was a mass of trucks as of mid-April.

With a theme focused on food and sustainable practices, the Expo will include interactive exhibitions like the Future Food District, a space to explore technological advances affecting the global food chain, and the Lake Arena, a mirrorlike pond and fountain fed by water from the city's canals. Giving a taste of various national cuisines, dozens of pavilions will also be hosted by restaurants, including the upmarket delicatessen chain Eataly (as well as Coca-Cola and McDonald's, fueling criticism that the theme of "sustainability" is cloaking the interests of conglomerates).

The event is expected to attract 20 million visitors.

Even with construction delays, the Expo's commissioner, Giuseppe Sala, told reporters in Milan this month that he remained confident construction would be completed in time. After all, he said, "When has it ever been the case for a project like an Expo or Olympic Games, that all the building work has been finished 30 days before the opening?"

There is still plenty to do in Milan beyond the Expo. Old structures of various stripes, including a sawmill, a foundry, a bank and a farmhouse, have recently been repurposed as bars, shops, restaurants and cultural centers. Not least of all: the majestic Duomo, whose gleaming facade has been restored.

Photo The 2,400-seat concert hall Philharmonie de Paris. Credit Dominique Faget/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images


No. 42 on our list, the Île-de-France — the district that encompasses the city and its outskirts — received a boost in January with the opening of the Philharmonie de Paris, the 2,400-seat concert hall designed by Jean Nouvel. The $455 million birdlike aluminum structure, nestled amid the Parc de la Villette in the 19th Arrondissement, borders the ring road that separates Paris's arrondissements from its working-class, poorer suburbs, or banlieues. Its location was part of an effort to draw new audiences to classical music, including younger people and suburban families.

"The goal of outreach was definitely realized," The New York Times music critic Anthony Tommasini wrote about the inaugural concerts and classes in January that attracted thousands of people, including parents pushing baby strollers. The spring's program is a hybrid of classic and contemporary music, with an exhibition on David Bowie, through May 31, alongside a series of concerts and workshops on the composer Pierre Boulez. In addition to performances by the resident orchestra, the Orchestre de Paris, the hall will welcome touring companies like the London Symphony Orchestra on April 20 and the artist Laurie Anderson and the Kronos Quartet on April 25 and 26.

Manchester, England

Cultural openings continue in this industrial, artsy city, No. 26 on our list. After a £15 million (about $22 million) renovation and expansion, the Whitworth reopened in February with two new wings, an art garden and a sculpture terrace. Through May 31, a retrospective of the English artist Cornelia Parker's work is on display, and one on the Chinese artist Cai Guo-Qiang continues through June 21 in the new landscape gallery. Opening on May 21 is the £25 million film center and theater HOME, which also includes gallery spaces, digital production and broadcast facilities, a bar and a bookshop. On its calendar are ambitious new productions like the play "The Funfair" and the exhibition "The heart is deceitful above all things," both drawing inspiration from the Hungarian playwright Odon von Horvath's "Kasimir and Karoline."

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In Transit Blog: A Book Fair in Buenos Aires

Photo The Buenos Aires International Book Fair in 2014.Credit Fundación El Libro

The 41st Buenos Aires International Book Fair takes place April 21 to May 11 at La Rural, fairgrounds in the Argentine capital.

Billed as "the most important annual literary event in the Spanish-speaking world" by the event's organizer, Fundación El Libro, the Buenos Aires International Book Fair begins with special sessions open only to book professionals, from April 21 to 23.

These sessions offer "an outstanding training program, the best business opportunities and chances for networking," Luciana Weiss, communications manager at Fundación El Libro, wrote in an email.

The fair opens to the public on the evening of April 23, and fair organizers are expecting 1.2 million visitors during the event, which will include more than 500 exhibitors and more than 4,000 publishing houses. The fair will also include, according to Fundación El Libro's website, "a complete cultural program," including readings and workshops.

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T Magazine: Rosario Dawson’s Adventures in Ghana, Celebrating Women and Her First Clothing Collection

Written By Unknown on Selasa, 14 April 2015 | 17.35

As dusk fell on a weekday last month, a four-wheel-drive barreled down a jungle path in the central region of Ghana, carrying Rosario Dawson, who, rubbed clean of makeup, less resembled a Hollywood actress than her latest role as a fashion entrepreneur studying agroforestry and sustainable cotton practices on a century-old plantation. During a break from promoting her new Netflix series, Marvel's "Daredevil" (released last Friday), Dawson, 35, had escaped a New York snowstorm to spend six days in Ghana and oversee production of her first full collection for Studio One Eighty Nine, a line of recycled glass jewelry and batik cotton and indigo separates. The company was cofounded and soft launched with her best friend Abrima Erwiah in 2013. "We wanted to do something we both valued and loved," she said, adding that they both grew up on Manhattan's Lower East Side and realized the need to do something social-minded.

They forewent fast fashion in favor of a more intimate and community-based approach, enlisting a vibrant fashion collective of African artisans. "We aren't telling their story, we aren't trying to push anything or create something new," Dawson says, "we are just trying to celebrate people and help push their story through." Her most recent visit to Africa Light began at the beach resort and fishing village of Busua, to celebrate International Women's Day, and then traveled up the Cape Coast, where she met with batikers and seamstresses, all of whom she knows on a first-name basis.

"Things are so mass-produced these days," says Erwiah, a former communications and marketing director at Bottega Veneta who now spends her time in the sprawling capital of Accra, home to Studio One Eighty Nine's headquarters. "When you wear something that is beautiful and unique, it's a gift. It's like art — you feel the energy behind the person." Designs in the collective's first collection include understated examples of luxury, like the "Andy," a unisex button-down made of butter-soft indigo denim, exclusively sourced and dyed in Mali. It's what you might wear to a summer concert in Brooklyn, or like Dawson, to a recent Ghanian dinner of fried tilapia with a side of kenkey (fermented corn dough), scooped up with her fingers in a back alley. "It's just too good," she remarked, reaching for seconds. Above, she shares a handful of other highlights from the trip.

Studio One Eighty Nine's Spring/Summer collection is available at Opening Ceremony.

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T Magazine: J.J. Martin on Where to Eat, Drink and Shop in Milan During Salone del Mobile

A view of the Besena Rotunda in Milan. Bottom right: J.J. Martin.Credit From left: Paolo and Federico Manusardi/Electa/Mondadori Portfolio via Getty Images; Todd Selby

As the international design set descends on Milan for another edition of the Salone del Mobile fair, which begins tomorrow, one American expat waits with open arms: J.J. Martin. The California native moved to the city 14 years ago to be with her Italian husband and has devoted herself to exploring its charms ever since, first as a journalist and Wallpaper magazine contributing editor and more recently as the founder of LaDoubleJ.com, an editorial and e-commerce site devoted to the best style and vintage shopping the city has to offer. "I have gotten an incredible hands-on education in fashion and design in Milan just by doing my job," she says. "I feel like it's the biggest, most international small town in the world." Here, on the eve of the fair, Martin offers up suggestions for where to eat, drink, shop and explore in her adopted hometown.

A cappuccino and the pastry counter at Pasticceria Cucchi.Credit


The Small: a tiny treasure

"I like to cook at home but when I do go out, I prefer cozier, more casual restaurants with traditional food. I really like the Small because it has that homey quality but it's also very well-designed."
Via Paganini Niccolo 3, thesmall.it.

Pasticceria Cucchi: the quintessential espresso

"This has been my go-to bar for 13 years. To be honest, it's not even the best coffee in Milan; for that, I prefer Marchesi or Bastianello. But the cozy mood and the deeply Italian scene in which octogenarians mingle with toddlers and fashion designers — not to mention Mr. Cucchi in his dapper suit and tie behind the cash register — keep me coming back every weekend."
Corso Genova 1, pasticceriacucchi.it.

T'A: new, delightful dining

"A relatively new restaurant. Super-central, chic interiors and great food."
Via Clerici 1, tamilano.com.

Fioraio Bianchi Caffe: cocktail hour

"I love the bar scene here. There's rarely any place to sit, but it's so lively and filled with flowers and creative people."
Via Montebello 7, fioraiobianchicaffe.it.

Marco Migliavacca leads a class at Hohm Street Yoga.Credit Guillermo Arriaza


Rotonda della Basana: a stroll back in time

"Down the street from my house is this beautiful cross-shaped brick building, where Marni hosted its flower market last fashion week. It's surrounded by a lovely porticoed brick walkway that makes me feel like I'm parading around in the 1700s."
Via Enrico Basana 12

Oditza: manicures on demand

"The Milanese have yet to conquer the spa concept (I'm still waiting for a bushy-tailed American to import a great one). The good news is that the best manicurist in town makes house calls."
+39 334 227 4630

Hohm Street Yoga: getting grounded

"I have been on a holy grail hunt for good yoga in Milan for over 13 years. A new — and long overdue — discovery is Hohm Street Yoga, where I take classes with Marco. He is the best teacher I've found in Milan so far."
Via San Calocero 3, hohmstreetyoga.com.

Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II: a memorable mall

"Taking pictures of the mosaic floor is one of my favorite free things to do in the city. The patterns and workmanship are so spectacular that I have to resist the urge to lie down on it and have someone snap my photo."
Piazza Duomo

Furniture at (from left) Bassam Fellows and Valore Aggiunto.Credit


BassamFellows Lifestyle Gallery at Exits Gallery: heavy dose of design

"The fact that these two Connecticut-based designers plopped themselves down in Milan and teamed up with the famed local architect Michele de Lucchi to offer not only their incredible furniture, footwear and eyewear, but also de Lucchi's hard to find lighting, glassware and metal objects is just very cool. This is what Milan is all about."
Via Varese 14, bassamfellows.com.

Antonia: fashion, Italian-style

"In terms of new fashion, I like this store, which features many of the usual big fashion brands, but the edit is extremely Milanese. So basically you're seeing what a proper Milanese woman would wear from all of the most recent fashion shows, which is fun and funny."
Via Broletto 43, antonia.it.

Il Valore Aggiunto: antiques galore

"When we were renovating our apartment, I bought a lot of great vintage and antique furniture from this place, which is run by two fabulous Italian sisters. I love going in there and spending an afternoon on one of their 1930s upholstered couches, talking about redecorating."
Via Mameli 3, ilvaloreaggiunto.it.

Arform: tabletop treasures

"The best-looking salad bowls, water carafes and glass lemon stands."
Via Moscova 22, arform.it.

Cheerleading for Milan


It's hip for the fashion crowd to hate the city, but some fans are trying to change opinions.

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