And it discusses how the city has developed its dining scene to now claim its place as the true king of continental cuisine.
It’s a profile piece on The Purple Passport for Private Air Magazine.
I interviewed the founders of TPP, Jennifer Garcia-Alonso and Emily C. Brands, to find out what makes these ultra-stylish, luxury travel guides different from all of the others.
You can find out what they had to say in this extract from the latest issue of PA.
As well as this article, my World Words writers contiributed several more pieces for the January-February issue of Private Air Magazine. You can read them all on the WW site.
“It was 200 years ago that explorer Johann Burckhardt rediscovered the Nabataen city of Petra. The ancient architectural masterpiece, in which stately façades are carved from pink sandstone cliffs, immediately caught the collective imagination of the Western world and was swiftly transformed into a booming tourist attraction.
However, over the last decade there’s been a concerted effort in Petra – and Jordan at large – to play down this mass tourism appeal and target the niche luxury market. From high-end hotels to haute cuisine, there’s now a trend for quality over quantity…”
“It’s 10am when the drum beat starts. The heavy thud-thud-thud of anticipation. The crowd falls silent – even the breeze drops to a whisper – as the relief guards appear at the gate. Resplendent in uniforms of crimson and cornflower, holding colorful banners aloft and accompanied by a cacophony of bugles and conch shells, they slow-step in synchronicity across the palace courtyard towards the on-duty sentries.
The Changing of the Guard at Gyeongbokgung Palace is one of Seoul’s oldest traditions. This display of military might first took place in 1469 and today guards are changed six times a day, on the hour, in a festival of color where ceremonial costumes, instruments and weapons whirl past in all directions. A rare and welcome celebration of prestigious past in a city – and country – preoccupied with the future…”
“As with so many things in the world of haute cuisine, it was the French who started the no-choice dining craze. Known as ‘Prix Fixe’ (fixed price) or ‘Table d’hôte’ (host’s table), the idea was simple: to offer a set menu at a set price, allowing a restaurant to focus its energy on a limited portfolio of finely-honed dishes.
In recent years, this concept has spread across the pond, and today the US boasts some of the world’s finest no-choice diners. Here are Forbes Travel Guide’s pick of America’s best, as well as great menu-free eateries from elsewhere…”
“Following the discovery of an old scrap of papyrus that refers to Jesus’ marriage to Mary Magdalene, experts have also revealed that it contains the first written example of the ‘Take My Wife’ punchline.
The comedy ‘bit’, in which The Saviour riffs on the subject of parking the donkey, followed by a light-hearted attempt to get shot of His prostitute spouse, is “equal parts hilarious and sacred” according to Professor Peter Lord.
“A morality tale about the treatment of mules, followed by a jibe at a disciple – this is exactly the kind of tomfoolery one expects from the self-proclaimed Son of God.”
“London is one of the world’s most visited cities, and its shop window attractions – the Tower of London, the Houses of Parliament, the British Museum – welcome millions of visitors each year. However, there is also another, less-seen aspect to the city, where uniquely fascinating features are concealed amid the chaos.
To offer you a fresh perspective on England’s capital, Forbes Travel Guide has chosen ten of the most interesting London attractions hidden in plain sight…”
This is the opening to an article and slideshow on London’s greatest secret sights, recently written for Forbes Travel Guide. From the World’s Smallest Police Station to the Seven Noses of Soho, click here to learn something new about an ancient city.
Since the beginning of 2011 I have written dozens of guides, itineraries and reviews on everywhere from Cardiff to Cancun – with particular focus on my joint residences of the UK and the Czech Republic – and they are now available for everyone to see!
Cross Bones – London, England
The most famous resting place in London is, without doubt, the wonderfully gothic Highgate: the eternal residence of everyone from Karl ‘Commie’ Marx to Douglas ‘Galaxy’ Adams; Michael ‘Benzene’ Faraday to Jeremy ‘Withered’ Beadle. The capital’s most interesting cemetery, on the other hand, is Cross Bones.
An unconsecrated necropolis for so-called ‘Winchester Geese’ – medieval prostitutes who were licenced by the Bishop of Winchester to work within Southwark – it is simply a mass grave for those deemed unfit for a Christian burial: the outcast dead. Now it’s most famous for a cracking Halloween procession.
You can read the whole article – Killing Time in Europe’s Best Cemeteries – in the August edition of stalkingElk
There are many perfectly good reasons to sack Cheryl Cole, but her Newcastle accent shouldn’t be one of them
Of course, that may just have been a convenient motive to get shot of her: perhaps, behind the scenes, Fox execs were really sweating over her lack of profile Stateside; or at her dull, nodding-dog-style screen presence. But if we believe the News of the World (and why shouldn’t we?), it all came down to the way she speaks. In the 21st century, when television should celebrate and embrace diversity, that’s surely a damning indictment of America’s tolerance of English accents. Continue reading