Art Basel / Miami Travel / Lists / Florida Travel / Art Travel / Events / Art Basel Miami Beach 2013 / Packing List / → All Tags
This week is arty-farty all right, as December 5 - 8 runs Art Basel Miami Beach, an annual collection of modern art fairs that attracts 50,000 visitors to do some $500 million in sales. Of course that's just the tip of the iceberg, as Basel is just as much about the societal buzz of the week as it is about the serious artwork and structured events. To enjoy it all and come out swinging, there's five things to have on you at all times during Art Basel:
· A good guide to the fairs.
Every year brings new satellite fairs to compliment the original Art Basel offering in Miami Beach's Convention Center. The only issue is that the area has grown, and now Wynwood's Context and downtown Miami's River Art Fair are draws of their own. To know what's on when, for how much, and how to direct your taxi there, we like the Miami New Times' .pdf guide, and the HuffPost has broken down some of the better talks and workshops throughout the week.
· Good shoes.
In short, this means no flip flops. Even poolside hang-outs are better served by wearing slip-on espadrilles, as Art Basel brings dressier requirements to Miami Beach. Now factor in that you'll be bouncing around all 80-degree day between art fairs, food, your hotel, and parties, and style-forward, dependable shoes become the best option.
There’s many fine breweries from which to choose in Vermont, but little did we know that the state is home to the "world’s best beer."
On past trips to Burlington we've noticed that there were always a few people at bars and restaurants drinking from large silver cans, and honestly we always thought it was odd to choose a canned beer over one on tap. Well we admit to judging a book by its cover, as apparently the preferred way in which to sip and sample the double India Pale Ale brewed by The Alchemist in Waterbury is straight from the can.
Last week, we were warmed when we read a few of the inscriptions found on the sides of a collection of 282 Zippo lighters that belonged to soldiers of the Vietnam War. They were recently sold at auction for about $35,000, making headlines and prompting some positive press for Zippo.
The company has been making lighters since 1933, but earlier this year it reached out with some good news: After 80 years of focusing on fire, Zippo was launching a line of outdoor products. In 2009, it introduced a range of outdoor lighters, but now they are going beyond the flame to a larger variety of outdoor lifestyle products, including axes, wood carriers, cookware and utensils.
Roller Coasters / Harry Potter / Wizarding World of Harry Potter / Universal Studios Orlando / Diagon Alley / Hogwarts Express / Gringotts Bank / → All Tags
Yup, that's it folks.
On a recent visit to Universal Studios in Orlando, the Wizarding World of Harry Potter was as bustling as ever (even during a low-season week, too). But while the Butterbeer and other Hogwarts merchandise galore kept distracting us, we tried to keep our eyes on the construction rising beyond the Dragon Challenge roller coaster ride.
Remember, this is where a Diagon Alley will be built along with a real deal Hogwarts Express train, able to take visitors from the Islands of Adventure park (where WWoHP is located) over to the front of Universal Studios and vice versa. It will also feature the city of London as well as a Gringotts Bank, which will no doubt mirror the movies and books by featuring a thrilling ride around the vaults.
New York City / Historical Travel / Holiday Travel / Events / Christmas Travel / Retro Travel / Vintage Travel / Subways / → All Tags
'Tis the season for New York City to unearth its transportation gems in the name of holiday fun, as the Big Apple again runs their special annual historic subway trains and city buses.
The subway train is the main attraction, and though it's technically called the "Nostalgia Shoppers' Special Train," you'll hear it referred to as the "vintage train" much more often. Clanking down the rails between Queens and the East Village, the train is an amalgam of rolling stock from the 1930s through 1950s.
A ride on the train costs the same as every other MTA ride—$2.25—and passengers are allowed to hop on/off at any stop just as if it were a normal subway train; the big difference is that the vintage train quickly turns into a party!
Free Stuff / Southwest / Airlines / Airline News / Video Game Travel / Airport News / Holiday Travel / Airports / → All Tags
It’s the season to celebrate the release of the latest and greatest in video games, and there’s one carrier getting in on the fun. Unfortunately they’re not giving away the PlayStation 4 or the Xbox One, but we can’t complain if an airline just hands us one of those Nintendo Wii U things. That’s the case over at Southwest Airlines, as they’re partnering up with Nintendo to bring Mario, Luigi, and all their friends to 35,000 feet.
Just the other day, Southwest passed out a brand new Wii U console to around 100 or so of their passengers, and Flight 1883 from New Orleans to Dallas-Love Field was the lucky recipient. Apparently Mario was even there to welcome the flight to the terminal, and he jumped onto the intercom to confirm that everyone would be scoring some freebies.
New Airline Alert / Up by El Al / El Al / Israel Travel / Europe Travel / LCC / LCCs / TLV / → All Tags
The past few years have absolutely been high times for full-service airlines to stretch their legs and enter the low-cost carrier market. Singapore Airlines has Scoot, ANA has Peach and Vanilla Air, Thai Airways has Nok Air, Air Canada has Air Canada Rouge, and these are only a few examples. Now, El Al is getting in on the fun with their own little brother of an airline, UP by El Al.
The new airline will fly from Tel Aviv to five cities in Europe, giving cost-conscious travelers a new option between Israel and Berlin, Budapest, Kiev, Prague and Larnaca. Offering the typical à la carte service model we've come to expect from budget airlines, Up will save passengers some cash with tickets to Prague and Budapest starting at $69, and the other destinations from $99 one-way.
Although SNUBA has been around since the early 90s, it hasn't exactly exploded onto the watersports scene. We first wrote about it back in 2008, and it seems like it hasn't made much progress in terms of getting on people's to-do lists. Snorkeling, scuba diving, and even newer inventions like fly boarding continue to garner more attention, both in practice and in the media, and we have to say we find it a bit surprising.
The reason is because we think these bridge-the-gap activities are so perfect for the up-and-coming adventure traveler. Maybe you're tired of snorkeling, but skeptical of scuba? SNUBA is a nice combination and limit-pusher, one that lets you break the surface and try out the sensation of breathing underwater without totally taking the plunge (or committing so much time). Basically, your air tank floats in a raft on the surface, and you breath through a long tube that has a regulator attached to the end.
Tourism New Zealand is once again capitalizing on their connection to The Hobbit Trilogy with a new exhibit in Los Angeles.
Yesterday, they kicked off the campaign by unveiling the World's Largest Pop-Up Book in Beverly Hills. The "book" includes original set pieces and props used in The Hobbit : The Desolation of Smaug, which premieres in Hollywood tonight.
Air New Zealand / Hobbit Travel / Airplanes / Livery / 777 / Airline News / Movie Travel / → All Tags
Yet another new Hobbit movie has the folks down at Air New Zealand all excited to launch their latest homage to Bilbo Baggins and Gandalf. The Kiwi airline has given fans of the movie a sneak peak of the latest release's namesake character by emblazoning a plane with Smaug, a mythical dragon of The Hobbit: The Desolation of the Smaug.
There's no doubt that Air NZ loves anything and everything Hobbit, as this is actually the second Boeing 777-300 to be wrapped with a Hobbit scene. Both colorful Boeings regularly fly between New Zealand and the US, which makes Los Angeles the best place to spot the new dragon.
Airport News / Airports / DFW / Holiday Travel / Shopping Travel / Christmas Travel / Dallas Travel / → All Tags
Today is Cyber Monday, and that means there’s all kinds of discounts to be had across the internet. However, after scoring a few digital deals, we suggest hitting the terminals and concourses to look for the next big thing in holiday gifts, and that’s because Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport is all about shipping and shopping for the next few weeks.
The airport is offering to ship gifts back to where you call home—no checked baggage free required—for those items purchased at the airport. Things started up on November 22, and the option will run through December 24. It’s called "You Shop, We Ship," and is available to all travelers who grab something valued at $50 or more in the airport—but there are some certain restrictions depending on the store or the seller. Let’s just say that the copy of US Weekly from Hudson News isn’t going to be eligible for this promotion.
Travel Deals / Cyber Monday / Budget Travel / Airfare Sales / Lufthansa / LAN / Southwest / Priceline / Rail Europe / Allegiant / Intrepid Travel / → All Tags
Happy Cyber Monday!
Hopefully you're not burnt out from turkey-eating and Black Friday shopping, because today really is quite the happy day for travelers looking for bargain, with at least nine airlines offering "book today" deals, and four other booking website joining the fun with their own promotions. Some require a code, others only book from a special Cyber Monday site, so pay attention if you're set on saving money.
Here's the current listing of travel Cyber Monday deals, and their fine print: