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  • Great Chefs Of The World

    Luxury Wine Tour of Piedmont

    Luxury Wine Tour of Piedmont

    The area in Piedmont called Langhe Roero has given the world the gift of truffles, the Ne…moreThe area in Piedmont called Langhe Roero has given the world the gift of truffles, the Nebbiolo grape, from which Barolo and Barbaresco come from and a dazzling cuisine that is both aristocratic and simple. On this luxury wine tour among castles and vineyards you’ll meet the makers of these great wines and the chefs working their luscious cuisine in some of the most charming medieval towns in Italy. Your trip starts at the Villa Tiboldi, luxuriously renovated Villa and Farmhouse surrounded by Nebbiolo and Arneis vineyards with views that go on forever. The estate produces its own excellent Arneis Malvira. Alba has a beautiful Cathedral from the XIth Century and a rich historic center. However Alba’s heart beats to the tune of the truffle. Renato Agnello, truffle hunter of of 60 years leads a walk through the woods with his dog Diana, looking for truffles. Tartufi Morra is a truffle emporium Established in 1930 working with all the truffle hunters in the area. It has the ultimate selection of everything truffles from chocolate to oils The restaurant Piazza Duomo owned by the Ceretto winemaking family is a shocking pink space with frescoes by Francesco Clemente .The avantguarde cuisine of Chef Enrico Crippa has earned the restaurant a one Michelin star. This is a café and pastry shop created by chef Luca Mentersino uses no sugar, milk or flour. Everything is made with substitute. So go ahead and splurge. Katja and Ivan Rivetti are the third generation of Rivetti making barbaresco here. Tops wines are Bricco Barbaresco and Bricco de Neveis. Housed in a sprawling and movie-set-like 18th century castle owned by the Stupino brothers, the winery focuses on specialty wines. In the 70’s the Stupino’s cloned an old variety of Arneis vine producing a remarkable sparkling Pinot Noir. Among their wide range of wines they produce a top Barbaresco Riserva Santo Stefano. The restaurant La Ciau del Tornavento in Treiso sits on top of sprawling vineyards is owned by chef Maurilio Garola. It. The Chef has consistently received one Michelin star for his ground breaking dishes such as “ Plin de Seirass”, ravioli stuffed with ricotta and served in an actual nest made out of hay. The fortified Castle erected in the XIth Century on top of a hill once belonged to Count Camillo Benso of Cavour, one of the architects of the Unification of Italy. The castle has a very large Enoteca representing the best of Piedmont wines and grappas. Barolo is a charming medieval town surrounded by wineries. Therefore opening a corkscrew museum was a no brainer for Paolo Annoni who was once a pharmacist but abandoned his old profession to pursue his obsession. Over the years he has travelled the world and auction houses searching for the most unusual corkscrews, collecting 1,300 rare ones . Barolo was first created by the Marchesi Falletti in the middle of the 19th century around the village of Barolo. A bottle of the first Barolo, "Cannubbio 1859” is on permanent display, while vintages from 1938 on are available to collectors. The Enoteca has the most complete collection of Barolo in the world with 35.000 bottles of Barolo and the yearly addition of 400 bottles. Giant 19 century chestnut barrels have been reconditioned to age outstanding Barolo like the Barolo Cannubi or various Barolo Riserva. Locanda nel Borgo Antico is set in an hamlet outside Barolo. In this elegant restaurant Chef Camia prepares his signature traditional classic dishes which have earned him a Michelin star. In little more than thirty years, the Ceretto brothers created a 300 acres network of small independent estates producing some outstanding labels. They have sponsored major art projects like the Clemente frescos for their restaurant, the Sol Lewitt Chapel among the vineyards and for their winery in the town of Castiglione Falletto they have created their futuristic wine-tasting glass cube. Top wines are Bricco Rocche, Brunate and Prapo’. You will stay in the Hotel Villa Beccaris an 18th century palazzo surrounded by vineyards near the historic town of Monforte DAlba. 3 Burlotto sisters run the Castle which their grandfather bought from the first King of Italy. The family restored and maintains the original frescos and furniture. Here cooking lesson in classic Piedmontese dishes are conducted. The winery has some of the oldest vintages in the region dating back from 1850. Top wines are Verduno Basadone, Barbaresco Rabaja’ and the Dolcetto D’Alba Campot. A truly royal lunch is served in the castle courtyard. Pietro Ratti runs the business founded by his father in the 60’s. Today this state of the arts winery produces an outstanding Barolo Marcenasco. In the medieval town of La Morra on top of a hillside sits an old castle, now the restaurant Belvedere with spectacular views of the Barolo hills all the way to the alps. The Bovio family that owns it produces an outstanding Barolo. Copyright Christina Tours, LLC less

    Cooking with Zarela: Smooth,not chunky- Guacamole

    Cooking with Zarela: Smooth,not chunky- Guacamole

    Mexican born Zarela Martinez is one the leading U.S. restaurateurs. Her namesake restaura…moreMexican born Zarela Martinez is one the leading U.S. restaurateurs. Her namesake restaurant is a Manhattan institution and a culinary trend-setter. She has authored several acclaimed books:"Food from my heart","Food and life of Oaxaca" and "Zarela's Veracruz". Her 13 part series "Zarela, Cocina Veracruzana" is airing on PBS. She has made guest appearances on many TV shows including "Julia Child:cooking with master chefs" and " Martha Stewart". less

    Ceretto: art, food and Barolo

    Ceretto: art, food and Barolo

    Alba in Piedmont is a very small town but it’s big in 3 areas: Art…. Food, being the worl…moreAlba in Piedmont is a very small town but it’s big in 3 areas: Art…. Food, being the world capital of black and white truffles and Wine, producing world reknown Barolo right here. The Ceretto family in Alba is literally and seriously involved in all 3 area. Established wine growers for 70 years they also own their own upscale restaurants and have enlisted major world artists to decorate their building. This never consecrated psychedelic chapel was painted by Saul Lewitt in 1999. Their winery is in nearby Castiglione Falletto, an old medieval town. However true to their adventurous spirit they picked Turin architect De Abate to design their modern building with a glass cube for the tasting room. On these hils on 20 acres they produce 3 outstanding Barolos which have won the company many awards: Bricco Rocche, Prapo and Brunate. So for their Piazza Duomo restaurant they picked Enrico Crippa, an awarded chef who paints beautiful dishes in the kitchen and the artist Francesco Clemente who painted the walls. Of course their Barolo is always on the table. The Chef explains that the fresco it represents happiness, the vineyard, nature and freedom. He also remembers that Clemente was painting with natural colors, made with flowers and natural herbs so while painting the room always filled up with insects and bees which were following the scent as if they were in an open field instead of a room in the center of town. less

  • 10 Best Things To Do

    10 Best: Berlin- Berliner Weisse

    10 Best: Berlin- Berliner Weisse

    10 Best series highlights the best things to do in the top cities around the world. …more10 Best series highlights the best things to do in the top cities around the world. Berliner Weisse is a specialty of Berlin: it's a top fermented,bottle conditioned. wheat beer. Because it is tart and acidic Berliners mix it with either raspberry or woodruff juice and drink it through a straw (which is quite controversial in Germany). Napoleon liked his Berliner Weisse without syrup and called it "the champagne of the North". In the US about 100 years ago this type of beer, made according to the Berliner Weisse method, was the most popular beer in the US. less

    10 Best: Bangkok- Cooking class

    10 Best: Bangkok- Cooking class

    The 10 Best series highlights the best things to do in the top cities around the world. …moreThe 10 Best series highlights the best things to do in the top cities around the world. From the Bangkok Marriott Pier, the Manhora cruise boat departs Monday to Friday for Thai cooking classes cruising down the Chaophraya River. The boat is a 100 year old rice barge restored for 21st century luxury cruising. Sunida is taught the art of preparing a 5 course banquet by Chef de Partie Patchareekorn Seehawat. Here we see the making of the most famous of Thai soups:the Tom Yum Talay. Hosted by Sunida Thirasak, a Bangkok native presently living in New York. less

    10 Best: Berlin- Quartier 206

    10 Best: Berlin- Quartier 206

    10 Best series highlights the best things to do in the top cities around the world. …more10 Best series highlights the best things to do in the top cities around the world. Very close to Checkpoint Charlie is the high-end shopping district on Friedrichstrasse. Quartier 206 is a most fashionable department store for the Berlin elite. Designed by the New York architectural firm of Pei, Cobb, Freed and Partners it has a dazzling deco feel. Hosted by Julia Grimpe, theater and TV star, who is a resident of Berlin. less

  • Great Hotels Of The World

    Knai Bang Chatt

    Knai Bang Chatt

    Serene and pure, Knai Bang Chatt, an exquisite lifestyle resort, will enchant you. Locate…moreSerene and pure, Knai Bang Chatt, an exquisite lifestyle resort, will enchant you. Located in Kep, right on the southern east coastline of Cambodia, the resort gives you a blend of privacy, serenity and exclusivity. Three renovated villas built in the 1970s by protégés of Vann Molyvann, a pupil of the world renowned Le Corbusier, are extraordinary historical landmarks you can now experience as your very own private home. less

    10 Best: Bangkok- personal Chef at Lebua Hotel

    10 Best: Bangkok- personal Chef at Lebua Hotel

    Bua means lotus in Thai and the french"le" before it clearly spells this Hotel mission to…moreBua means lotus in Thai and the french"le" before it clearly spells this Hotel mission to be the ultimate in East-West sophistication offering all suites and amenities like a personal chef cooking in your room featured here. Ranked as "2008 best Luxury Hotel", by Traveler's Choice, Trip Advisor, Lebua at State Tower is located in the heart of Bangkok a few steps from the Chao-Phraya river. This is a different Bangkok from the familiar hustle and bustle one and its restaurant and bar on the 65th floor terrace offer the most breathtaking views of the city. Hosted by Sunida Thirasak, a Bangkok native presently living in New York. less

    Cruising the Nile on the Oberoi Philae part 1

    Cruising the Nile on the Oberoi Philae part 1

    A nile cruise is a magical way to experience the 7000 year history of Egypt because the l…moreA nile cruise is a magical way to experience the 7000 year history of Egypt because the largest concentration of temples lies along the river Nile between Luxor and Aswan. This 7 day cruise starts in Luxor, which has been called the greatest open air museum and is probably the oldest tourist destination in history. The ship is the Oberoi Philae, a vessel built in 1996 with 50 luxurious cabins and all amenities. A true floating luxury Hotel. The ship sails north to Quina . The wonderfully preserved temple of Dendera is a rare sight to behold. The main temple dedicated to the Goddess Hathor, goddess or pleasure and of love, usually represented as a cow, or a woman with a cow’s head. Its hypostyle hall has towering columns inscribed with hieroglyphs. The massive stone roof is rich with painted reliefs. Under the temple are dark chambers and underground passages. The courtyard has a rare statue of the god Bes the patron of childbirth. After Dendera the ship sails back to Luxor. A beautiful sphinx way leads to the entrance of the temple of Luxor. Built by Ramses the Great it was dedicated to the god Amun. A couple of miles north is the spectacular Temple of Karnak. Built over more than a thousand years by generations of Pharaohs Karnak is the largest religious complex in the world. The great “Hypostyle Hall” is an incredible forest of giant pillars, covering an area larger than the whole of Notre Dame Cathedral. The West Bank is a quick boat ride across the Nile, Here a baloon ride gives an overview of the immense funerary valleys below. The Valley of the Kings, is a vast City of the Dead where magnificent tombs were carved into the desert rocks, decorated richly, and filled with treasures for the . In the next valley rising out of the desert plain as if carved out of the limestone cliffs, is the Temple of Queen Hatshepsut ,Ancient Egypt’s only female Pharaoh. On the way back to the river Nile, the road passes by the famed Colossi of Memnon, the only survivors of a once imposing temple. The ship sails south to Essna. The Oberoi Philae ranked 3rd in BEST SMALL SHIPS OF THE WORLD awarded by Conde' Nast Traveller, USA in 2009 http://www.oberoihotels.com/oberoi_philae less

  • World Heritage Sites

    The Dead Sea

    The Dead Sea

    The Dead Sea also called the Salt Sea, is a salt lake bordering Jordan to the east and I…moreThe Dead Sea also called the Salt Sea, is a salt lake bordering Jordan to the east and Israel and the West Bank to the west. Its surface and shores are 423 metres (1,388 ft) below sea level, Earth's lowest elevation on land. The Dead Sea is 377 m (1,237 ft) deep, the deepest hypersaline lake in the world. With 33.7% salinity, it is also one of the world's saltiest bodies of water. . It is 8.6 times saltier than the ocean. This salinity makes for a harsh environment in which animals cannot flourish, hence its name. The Dead Sea is 67 kilometres (42 mi) long and 18 kilometres (11 mi) wide at its widest point. It lies in the Jordan Rift Valley, and its main tributary is the Jordan River. The Dead Sea has attracted visitors from around the Mediterranean basin for thousands of years. Biblically, it was a place of refuge for King David. It was one of the world's first health resorts (for Herod the Great), and it has been the supplier of a wide variety of products, from balms for Egyptian mummification to potash for fertilizers. People also use the salt and the minerals from the Dead Sea to create cosmetics and herbal sachets. The Dead Sea seawater has a density of 1.240 kg/L, which makes swimming similar to floating. The Dead Sea is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. less

    Castel Del Monte Apulia

    Castel Del Monte Apulia

    Castel del Monte in Andria in Apulia is a 13th Century castle and a Unesco World Heritage…moreCastel del Monte in Andria in Apulia is a 13th Century castle and a Unesco World Heritage Site. It stands on a promontory, where it was constructed during the 1240s by the Emperor Frederick II, who had inherited the lands from his mother Constance of Sicily. In the 18th century, the castle's interior marbles and remaining furnishings were removed. It has neither a moat nor a drawbridge and some considered it never to have been intended as a defensive fortress;however, archaeological work has suggested that it originally had a curtain wall. less

    Istanbul

    Istanbul

    Istanbul biggest draw remains its historic center, partially listed as a UNESCO World Her…moreIstanbul biggest draw remains its historic center, partially listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Sultan Ahmed Mosque is popularly known as the Blue Mosque for the blue tiles adorning the walls of its interior. It was built from 1609 to 1616, during the rule of Ahmed I. Like many other mosques, it also comprises a tomb of the founder, a madrasah and a hospice. At its lower levels and at every pier, the interior of the mosque is lined with more than 20,000 handmade ceramic tiles in more than fifty different tulip designs. Dolmabahçe Palace, located in the Beşiktaş district on the European coastline of the Bosphorus strait, served as the main administrative center of the Ottoman Empire from 1856 to 1922, Hagia Sophia is a former Orthodox patriarchal basilica, later a mosque, and now a museum. From the date of its dedication in 360 until 1453, it served as the Greek Patriarchal cathedral of Constantinople, except between 1204 and 1261, when it was converted to a Roman Catholic cathedral under the Latin Empire. The building was a mosque from 29 May 1453 until 1931, when it was secularized. It was opened as a museum on 1 February 1935. Topkapi Palace was the Sultan's residence during Ottoman's times. Construction began in 1459, ordered by Sultan Mehmed II, the conqueror of Byzantine Constantinople. The palace complex consists of four main courtyards and many smaller buildings. At its peak, the palace was home to as many as 4,000 people, The Spice Bazaar, or Egyptian Bazaar is one of the largest bazaars in the city. Located in Fatih, in the neighborhood of Eminönü and is the second largest covered shopping complex after the Grand Bazaar. The building itself is part of the külliye of Yeni Mosque, and rents from the shops within was intended to help pay for the upkeep of the mosque. The structure was designed by the chief court architect Koca Kasım Ağa, but completed by architect Mustafa in 1660. less