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  • Great Chefs Of The World

    Tuscany Luxury Wine Tour Part 2

    Tuscany Luxury Wine Tour Part 2

    Authentic Italian cowboys, tending to the cattle farms that produce the renown Florentine…moreAuthentic Italian cowboys, tending to the cattle farms that produce the renown Florentine steak have been a tradition in Maremma, Western Tuscany. Near Grosseto in the South is the Saturnia Resort and Spa whose thermal waters have been known known since Roman times. The moisturizing thermal plankton is the active ingredient. The Thyrrhenian Coast is rugged and beautiful. The Pellicano, a five star luxury resort has villas hidden in the cliff overlooking a secluded bay near trendy Porto Ercole.The cuisine is also 5 star run by a Michel awarded chef. The Coast is also home to glamorous wineries which in the race to stand out among the competition have contracted famous architects to design their headquarters. Like Rocca di Frassinello in Zavorrano a partnership with Les Domaines Baron de Rothschild-Lafite designed by Renzo Piano. The winery as a cathedral. And the Petra Winery in Suvereto designed by Mario Botta. L’Andana co-owned by Chef Alain Ducasses is another five star resort in Castiglione della Pescaia. It also raises cattle on its 1000 acres Estate. The Bolgheri area is known for wineries like Grattamacco, making “Supertuscans”, higher quality wines made from Sangiovese, Merlot and Shiraz. San Giminiano the walled Medieval city in the province of Siena holds regular Medieval festivals and re-enactments. The next resort is Borgo di Colleoli near Palaia built entirely around a medieval castle and carefully restored. It ha san innovative Tuscan kitchen and an extensive wine cellar. Pisa: beyond the leaning tower lies an historic city with great churches, monumento and charming piazzas. Bagni di Lucca was known for its thermal bath since Etruscan and Roman times. The mountain community and spa by the same name are hidden in the hills surrounding Lucca. Lucca is not to be missed. Home to composer Giacomo Puccini it is an historical city with sophisticated dining, great markets and vibrant night life. Cantine Bernardini, housed in a 16th century palazzo owned by the Bernardini family, is a Lucca landmark serving local specialties and wines. Several wineries are scattered in the hills surrounding the town. In Montecarlo we find the awarded winery Montechiari producing excellent reds on its 20 acres estate. less

    Cooking with Zarela: Thorny issue-Nopales

    Cooking with Zarela: Thorny issue-Nopales

    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

    Cafe Sistina: 360 degrees

    Cafe Sistina: 360 degrees

    Cafe Sistina in Honolulu is a landmark of upscale Italian cuisine and is one of the most…moreCafe Sistina in Honolulu is a landmark of upscale Italian cuisine and is one of the most photographed restaurants in the city because of its frescoes. Owner and Chef Sergio Mitrotti is also the artist, who, over the years has moved effortlessly from the stove to the scaffolding during dining hours. His interpretation of the Sistine Chapel is populated by the powerful creatures who are Michelangelo'signature. The walls are also full of unique details that make dining at Sistina a pleasure for all the senses. Sergio has recently completed a large mural on the Declaration of Independence commissioned by the Honolulu Supreme Court. Cafe Sistina 1314 S. King St. Honolulu 808 5960061 www.cafesistina.com less

  • 10 Best Things To Do

    10 Best Napa: Amorosa Castle

    10 Best Napa: Amorosa Castle

    Castello di Amorosa is a winery located near Calistoga, California. First opening its doo…moreCastello di Amorosa is a winery located near Calistoga, California. First opening its doors to the public in April 2007, it is the pet project of 4th generation vintner, Dario Sattui who also owns and operates the V. Sattui Winery named after his great-grandfather who originally established a winery in San Francisco in 1885. The castle interiors, which include 107 rooms on 8 levels above and below ground, cover approximately 121,000 square feet. Among many other features it has: a moat; a drawbridge; defensive towers; an interior courtyard; a torture chamber; a chapel/church; a knights' chamber; and a 72 by 30 feet great hall with a 22-foot -high coffered ceiling. The torture chamber has an authentic 300-year-old iron maiden which Sattui states he bought for $13,000 in Pienza, Italy, a replica rack, prison chambers and other torture devices. The great hall features frescoes painted by two Italian artists who took about a year and a half to complete and showcases a 500 year old fireplace. The masonry, ironwork and woodwork was fashioned by hand using old world crafting techniques. Building materials included 8,000 tons of locally quarried stone, in addition to paving stones, terra cotta roofing tiles and some 850,000 bricks imported from Europe. Extending into the hillside adjacent to the castle lies a labyrinth of caves some 900 feet in length. Beneath the castle are a 2-acre barrel cellar and tasting rooms where visitors can sample the wines-all sold only at the Castle. less

    10 Best: Berlin-Cafe Einstein

    10 Best: Berlin-Cafe Einstein

    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. Cafe' Einstein is an old coffee house with a long and glamorous history, a trendy crowd coming in at all hours and the best apple strudel in town. Hosted by Julia Grimpe, a TV and Theater star who resides in Berlin. less

    Apulia Wine Tour promo

    Apulia Wine Tour promo

    The region of Apulia with 1000 hours more sunlight a year than the rest of the country ma…moreThe region of Apulia with 1000 hours more sunlight a year than the rest of the country make superb wines.Let iexplore guide you on this magical Luxury wine tour. You ‘ll toast with top winemakers and will be dazzled by Apulia’s richness of wine, art and food…. Right next to Castel del Monte is the Rivera winery and the unique terrain here is the reason for outstanding wines like Falcone. Mr. Cocevola with a working farm near the Castle produces also a superior wines likeVandalo. The restaurant Corte in Fiore in Trani has won many awards.You will love it. Trani boasts a spectacular 13th Century Cathedrals right on the Adriatic sea water with splendid frescoes and mosaics. You’ll be staying at a 500 year old farmhouse locally called Masseria hidden in the midst of an ancient olive grove. Today Masseria Torre Coccaro is a 5 star resort where you’ll begin to understand the magical allure of Puglia. Alberobello is famous for its 1,500 conical trulli homes. Today it’s a UNESCO World Heritage site. Stroll through the hilltop town of Martina Franca, a beautiful baroque city full of great churches and palazzos. Enjoy Masseria Torre Coccaro’s private beach on the Adriatic sea. Or retreat to their cool spa built in a cave. Ostuni known as "the White Town" is an architectural jewel with a striking medieval cathedral and endless winding streets to get lost in. At Torre Coccaro the Chef will seduce you with his delicious cuisine. Be wisked by private boat for a swim in the crystal-water coves of Monopoli. Brindisi has been a major wine grower since roman times. Luigi Rubino holds his wine tasting at the restaurant Penny in a 12th Century building in order to highlight food pairing. Be swept away by his superb red called Torre Testa . Cantine Due Palme, is a co-operative of 1,000 growers specializing in local grape varieties. Taste their top wine Selvarossa with the enologyst and Director Angelo Maci. Lecce is nicknamed "The Florence of the South" because of the rich Baroque architectural monuments carved out of the local white stone. In Lecce you’ll stay at the Hotel Risorgimento, a five star Luxury Hotel in a spectacular 18th Century Palace in the heart of town . Have lunch at Atenze a landmark restaurant housed in a baroque palace with superb Apulian specialties. Taste Leone de Castris Salice Salentino Donna Lisa, the top wine of the collection. You’ll enjoy spectacular views of the harbour from Palazzo Papaleo, your own 5 star palazzo . Explore Otranto and its medieval monuments. After this magical tour with iexplore.com, Apulia will have carved out a place in your heart forever. For more information on this privately guided, dream luxury wine tour call us at 1-800 iexplore or visit iexplore.com less

  • Great Hotels Of The World

    Sokha Hotel

    Sokha Hotel

    Sihanouk Ville is a great little tropical getaway in the sun, sea and white sandy beaches…moreSihanouk Ville is a great little tropical getaway in the sun, sea and white sandy beaches. A place to unwind in a lay back ambience, enjoy ocean-fresh seafood and take in a snorkeling or scuba diving trip. The Sokha Luxury Hotel Sokha Beach Resort, set amidst 23.5 hectares of beautifully landscaped beachfront and garden with its own 1.5 kilometer pristine white sandy beach is a top choice when vacationing in South East Asia. It was voted amongst the Best New Hotels in the World in Conde Nast Traveler Magazine's Ninth Annual Hot List of 2005. A nearby attraction is the Ream National Park located 18 km from Sihanoukville and a must see while in Southern Cambodia. The park, which has been open since 1993, encompasses 30,000 acres of rainforest and 12,000 acres of marine habitats. http://www.sokhahotels.com less

    Independence Hotel Cambodia

    Independence Hotel Cambodia

    The Independence Hotel was designed by French architect M. Mondet in 1963 and was const…moreThe Independence Hotel was designed by French architect M. Mondet in 1963 and was constructed to complement the burgeoning tourist influx in Sihanouk Ville. Cambodians still refer to the Independence Hotel as the "7 storey hotel". It is a direct reference to this outstanding landmark which sits like a beacon on a promontory in the heart of the tropical forest. One hallmark of modernist architecture is the use of a site to add prominence to the architect's intentions. In this particular case, the marriage works well with the hotel commanding views of coastline and the rolling hills of Sihanouk Ville in every direction. King Norodom Sihanouk's designed the interiors as well as Promenade des Anglais - a garden and walkway at the base of the rocky outcrop that skirts Independence Beach. Jacqueline Kennedy staid there as well as a wide range of political celebrities from around the world. Today, fully restored to its former beauty and glory, The Independence Hotel succeeds in combining luxury with modernity and history. http://www.independencehotel.net/ less

    4 Rivers Floating Eco Lodge, Cambodia

    4 Rivers Floating Eco Lodge, Cambodia

    4 Rivers Floating Eco-lodge is remote but accessible, getting to there is your opportunit…more4 Rivers Floating Eco-lodge is remote but accessible, getting to there is your opportunity to acclimatise yourself to the country, the region and its always smiling, welcoming people. less

  • World Heritage Sites

    Plitvice Lake Croatia

    Plitvice Lake Croatia

    Down toward the central region of Licka are the Plitvize lakes. Surrounded by 3 mountains…moreDown toward the central region of Licka are the Plitvize lakes. Surrounded by 3 mountains feeding the lakes this World Heritage Site is a grand collection of amazing waterfalls and 16 lakes known for their unusual changing colors colors ranging from blue to aqua to turquoise . less

    Yangtze River cruise part 3 Huangshan, a World Heritage Site

    Yangtze River cruise part 3 Huangshan, a World Heritage Site

    Set in the midst of the most rural China is the dramatic Yellow Mountain, the subject of …moreSet in the midst of the most rural China is the dramatic Yellow Mountain, the subject of chinese paintings for two thousand years. Huang Shan (meaning Yellow Mountain) is a mountain range that has played a leading role in the cultural, literary and artistic history of China because of its scenic beauty. It has attracted a large number of poets, painters and other artists. Its attraction lies in the peculiar shapes of the granite peaks, in the weather-shaped Huangshan Pine trees, and in views of the clouds from above. The area also has hot springs and natural pools. The Huang Shan are located in southern Anhui province in eastern China. The mountain range comprises of 77 larger peaks. The mountains were formed in the Mesozoic, about 100 million years ago, when an ancient sea disappeared. Unesco declared Huan Shan a World Heritage Site less

    Assisi a World Heritage Site

    Assisi a World Heritage Site

    Assisi, the Basilica of San Francesco and Other Franciscan Sites is an eclectic site that…moreAssisi, the Basilica of San Francesco and Other Franciscan Sites is an eclectic site that was inscribed on 5 cultural criteria. It got praised as an authentic Umbrian hill town, a sanctuary, for its art and architecture in the Basilica of San Francesco, and for the influence of the Franciscan order in the world. The town, already a sanctuary in Roman times, has been associated with Saint Francis since the 13th century; Assisi was his birthplace, and he founded the Franciscan religious order here in 1208. Unesco declared the Basilica a World Heritage Site. less