June 2013 travel news: editor's picks
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Hotel Mare e Pineta, Milano Marittima, Italy
On a golden stretch of the Adriatic coast known as Milano Marittima, Hotel Mare e Pineta just got a contemporary makeover by Milanese legend Piero Lissoni. The architect has ribbon-cut a new wing featuring a ground-floor restaurant and 16 rooms and suites, but the overhaul of the 1920s hotel - one of the region’s most exclusive - started in earlier phases with public areas, lobby and beach club. Lissoni has created a clean canvas of white walls with teak, bronze and glass. Stay tuned for a new spa and more room renovations in the coming year.
Viale Dante 40, Milano Marittima, Italy; Tel: 39.544 992262; www.selecthotels.it (opens in new tab)
Writer: JJ Martin
Photographer: Cesare Chimenti
Odessa, Kiev, Ukraine
Restaurateur Natalia Ivantsova’s latest offering might be based in Kiev, but everything about it, from name to décor, pays homage to the costal city of Odessa. Originally a fast food restaurant founded by Ivantsova’s mother in 1980, the restaurant was given a makeover by locals Yod Design Lab, who created a modern space filled with naval references - from the dangling rope in the main dining room to the blue oars on the walls. A warm palette of sandstone, blond wood and olive-green fabric brings to mind the Crimean sea, while the open kitchen with two copper tandoors adds a splash of liveliness to the otherwise serene atmosphere.
Chef Yuri Priemsky cooks up a monthly menu that nods to Odessa's cosmopolitan character with sous-vide salmon with Piedmont risotto and asparagus along with simple classics like mashed potatoes with crab. Mixologist Nargis Moskalenko adapts a list of hits from some of the world’s top bars, from Singapore’s Long Bar to the Experimental Cocktail Club in Paris. ‘The Indian Summer’, a gin drink from London’s Zetter Townouse, has already become a crowd favourite.
Chervonoarmiyska Street 114, Kiev, Ukraine; Tel: 380.44 528 0799; odessarest.com.ua (opens in new tab)
Writer: TF Chan
Photography: Andrey Avdeenko
Prince de Galles, Paris, France
Built in 1928 by French architect André Arfvidson, the exquisite Prince de Galles hotel on avenue Georges V has reopened after an extensive but sensitive renovation. Designed by in-demand hospitality interiors specialist Pierre-Yves Rochon (whose past projects include The Savoy in London and a host of Four Seasons hotels), the lobby, rooms and suites pay tribute to the graphic lines and materials of the art deco period, featuring rare black Saint Laurent marble, original mosaics in the bathrooms and elegant striped ebony cabinets. Paris-based interior architect Bruno Borrione brought his vision to the eclectically furnished ground-floor bar (which features a 4m chandelier) and the restaurant, with its white leather cocoon chairs, white marble tables and a marble open kitchen. The restaurant opens onto the palm tree-filled patio, trimmed with original listed art deco mosaics.
33 avenue Georges V, Paris, France; Tel: 33.1 53 23 77 77; www.princedegallesparis.com (opens in new tab)
Writer: Marie Le Fort
Photography: Sylvie Bequet
Captain Melville, Melbourne, Australia
Named after the legendary Melburnian bushranger Francis Melville, this new restaurant and bar in Melbourne’s oldest public house harks back to the gold rush days. The 1853 building’s most recent incarnation was as a dingy nightclub, but its fixtures and fittings have been stripped away by local firm Breathe Architecture to reveal skylights and the original bluestone walls and tiles. The drinks menu has Victorian-era wines and beers, such as the Tasmanian brew Boag’s Draught, and old-fashioned cocktails with names like Nuggety Gully. The bar opens onto a large communal dining hall, where head chef Shayne McCallum (formerly of The Botanical and The Graham) serves up casual modern Australian fare, including crispy fried chicken and salt-and-pepper squid with black garlic aioli, with lots of shared dishes. New steel tent frames are a nod to the more basic hospitality of the gold rush era.
34 Franklin Street, Melbourne, Australia; Tel: 61.3 9663 6855, www.captainmelville.com.au (opens in new tab)
Writer: Elana Castle
Photography: Sean Fennessy
Refinery Hotel, New York, USA
Once a millinery factory with a swish tea salon attached, the new Refinery Hotel brings a dose of nostalgic elegance back to New York's oft-neglected Garment District. Beside original Neo-Gothic arches and windows, which have all been preserved, the building, which has entrances on both 38th and 39th Streets, has been decked out in an industrial style by Stonehill & Taylor, the architecture and design firm behind other hip favourites like the NoMad and Ace Hotels.
The 197-room Refinery is no slouch. Each loft-like space boasts 12-foot ceilings, reclaimed hardwood floors and custom furniture. The lobby houses the Prohibition-style Winnie’s Tea Lounge, named after an original tenant who ran the bustling tearoom that was once in its place. The hotel restaurant, an upscale American bistro called Parker & Quinn, is much welcome in the area, with its dearth of culinary offerings. However the real jewel is the 12th-floor rooftop bar, a sprawling amalgam of terracotta brick, wood and glass that showcases the dramatic view of the Empire State Building. With both food and drink on offer here, the bar is sure to be the hotel’s best asset and its lynchpin in bringing new life back to the area.
63 West 38th Street, New York, USA; Tel: 1.646 664 0310; www.refineryhotelnewyork.com (opens in new tab)
Writer: Pei-Ru Keh
Catalunya, Hong Kong, China
The metamorphosis of Hong Kong’s back streets into chic dining destinations continues with the opening of Catalunya on a quiet corner between Happy Valley Racecourse and Causeway Bay. The 8,000 sq ft eatery has a stellar team of chefs and managers from such celebrated Spanish restaurants as Ferran Adrià’s famed elBulli, El Celler de Can Roca, Mugaritz and Arzak. Expect a modern interpretation of authentic rustic Catalan fare - chef Alain Devahive Tolosa’s signature Catalunya tomato tartar and suckling pig is a culinary highlight.
The relaxed, modern interiors by New York-based designers AvroKO avoid clichés with a sleek eight-metre walnut bar seating 40 and an extraordinary custom brass and glass chandelier over the roast pig-carving station. The 140-seat space comprises a casual street-side café and more formal dining, with curved red-leather banquettes and a Spanish tile-clad modern fireplace. A private dining room complete with VIP entrance and views of the kitchen action seats 16.
G/F, Guardian House, 32 Oi Kwan Road, Hong Kong; Tel: 852 2866 7900; www.catalunya.hk (opens in new tab)
Writer: Catherine Shaw
Duddell’s, Hong Kong, China
A new venue is creating a stir in Hong Kong with its stylish approach to showcasing modern art. Founded by hospitality entrepreneurs Alan Lo, Paulo Pong and Yenn Wong as a social hub for the creative community, Duddell’s combines fine dining with a guest-curated programme of art, talks, film screenings and performances. Spread over the third and fourth floors above the Shanghai Tang flagship, the 10,000 sq ft space presented an integration challenge, but London-based Studioilse tackled it with aplomb. They created a sophisticated, earthy palette with oak, bronze, travertine, concrete and mohair velvet. A silver travertine staircase leads from the Cantonese restaurant, run by Michelin-starred chef Siu Hin-chi (previously of The Langham) to a library, lounge, cocktail salon and 2,000 sq ft outdoor terrace. ‘The concept had to be fully integrated to work seamlessly,’ says Crawford. ‘We worked at every level of design, from the concept, interior architecture, furniture, tableware and graphics to the smallest detail - everything you touch, essentially.’
Levels 3&4, Shanghai Tang Mansion, 1 Duddell Street, Hong Kong; Tel: 852.2525 9191, www.duddells.co (opens in new tab)
Writer: Catherine Shaw
Photographer: Nathaniel Mcmahon
Monsieur Bleu, Paris, France
Although its name is an oblique nod to Yves Klein, Monsieur Bleu is devoid of the artist’s signature electric blue. Instead, the impressive new restaurant in Paris’ Palais de Tokyo is a dramatic space warmed by burnished bronze and mossy green, the vision of prolific Parisian designer Joseph Dirand (see W*168). Anchoring the soaring scale are huge suspended geometric lights originally designed for the French embassy in Brazil, while four Lalique glass panels from the original 1930s interior punctuate a side wall. Food is by chef Benjamin Masson (formerly of Pétrus) and the menu exemplifies modern French brasserie dining with seasonal dishes and a decadent caviar list. The restaurant is the first collaboration between co-owners and childhood friends Gilles Malafosse (Le Flandrin, Pétrus), Laurent de Gourcuff and Benjamin Cassan. The trio envision Monsieur Bleu as a place for pre-club cocktails and nightcaps, as well as dining.
13 avenue du Président Wilson, Paris, France; Tel: 33.1 47 20 90 47, www.monsieurbleu.com (opens in new tab)
Writer: Amy Verner
Photography: Sylvie Bequet
Oblix, London, UK
From certain angles and in certain places, London can look and feel less and less like London every day. Especially, and ironically, when you see the city spread out before you while enjoying expertly prepared pan-fried salmon. Thirty-two floors up, Oblix is the first of three new restaurants to open this summer in the Shard, Renzo Piano’s still-astonishing glass spike rising above London Bridge; Aqua Shard and Hutong, which will sandwich the eatery, are near completion. It is, of course, a prized pitch. And German-born chef Rainer Becker (of the New York Grill and Bar in Tokyo’s Park Hyatt), who previously partnered with restaurateur Arjun Waney to open London's much-loved Zuma and Roka, knows what to do with it. The 200-seat restaurant and bar was designed by celebrated Italian architect and designer Claudio Silvestrin and features a sophisticated palette of warm brown Turkish stone, dark wood and leather. But the overall strategy, made strikingly clear after dark, is to let London’s cityscape take centre stage.
Level 32, The Shard, 31 St Thomas Street, London, UK; Tel: 44.20 7268 6700, www.oblixrestaurant.com (opens in new tab)
Writer: Nick Compton
Photography: Christoffer Rudquist
Hôtel Droog pop up, Paris, France
Dutch design brand Droog has teamed up with another purveyor of cool, Merci store in Paris, to offer a pop-up rendition of Amsterdam's Hôtel Droog during Designer's Days. Like the original (opens in new tab), the pop-up centres on a one-bedroom dwelling, immersing guests in a trove of iconic Droog products - and some new pieces, which debuted at this year's Salone del Mobile. The Parisian incarnation of Hôtel Droog includes a mini version of Droog's 'Fish Restaurant', a fairytale garden by French landscape designers Corinne Julhiet Détroyat and Claude Pasquerand (also a feature of the original), and a tattoo parlour for those looking to take home a permanent souvenir. Guests are invited to check in after hours and checkout the next morning just before the store opens its doors for business as usual. This edition of the pop-up runs until 15 June, but Droog has more concept pop-ups in the pipeline - stay tuned.
Merci, 111 Boulevard Beaumarchais, 73003 Paris, France; Tel: 33.1 42 77 00 33; www.droog.com (opens in new tab)
Writer: Jessica Klingelfuss
PiDGiN, Vancouver, Canada
Terminal City’s latest culinary venture has dared to install itself opposite historic Pigeon Park - turf adamantly claimed by the local homeless community and now unremittingly picketed by anti-gentrification activists. Drama aside, the scene is best savoured with a sake-infused cocktail and a selection of West Coast-style tapas (think chili lime peanuts, beef tataki and parisienne gnocchi). The simple, elegant fare is honed to perfection by Winnipeg chef Makoto Ono, who trained at his parent’s sushi bar, cooked in London and opened restaurants in Beijing and Hong Kong. Interiors are by local restaurant designer of the moment Craig Stanghetta, whose studio Ste Marie marries Japanese minimalism and deco references with warming wood furniture and bespoke lighting (by partner company Good Animal). Standout features include a quirky goose wing prosthesis by Mexico-born artist Enriquez Alvarez, and claw taps by local studio Espiritu design.
350 Carrall Street, Vancouver, Canada; Tel: 1.604 620 9400; www.pidginvancouver.com (opens in new tab)
Writer: Hadani Ditmars
Rivea, Saint Tropez, France
Superchef Alain Ducasse’s latest culinary set-up is in the legendary Hôtel Byblos in Saint Tropez. Rivea was designed by Italian practice Antonio Citterio Patricia Viel and Partners and features a vast terrace with oversized B&B Italia furniture and a textured-bronze bar under an Ingo Maurer chandelier. The menu is a simple Mediterranean affair, featuring dishes like rock octopus salad, preserved sardines and, for dessert, a tempting lemon shortbread with limoncello sorbet.
27 avenue Foch, Saint Tropez, France; Tel: 33.4 94 56 68 20; www.byblos.com (opens in new tab)
Writer: Marie Le Fort
Photographer: James Reeve
Gaspar, Istanbul, Turkey
After the success of his first restaurant Münferit, Istanbul-based chef Ferit Sarper has launched a new eatery located in the bustling district of Karaköy. Gaspar, with its menu of contemporary Turkish dishes, from broiled octopus with polenta to pasta with bottarga (Mediterranean cured fish roe), is designed by Seyhan Özdemir, Sarper’s wife and one half of the Istanbul-based design studio Autoban.
Anchored inside a century-old printing house - a beautiful neo-classical building with high ceilings - Gaspar unfolds into a double-storey space clad in a dynamic patchwork of plywood panels in different sizes and finishes. Playing with mathematical order, the backlit panels create a kinetic randomness on the walls. Interiors, inspired by the concept of the Cabinet of Curiosities, are furnished selectively with unusually contoured pieces that bring character to the space.
Müeyyeyzade Mahallesi, Necatibey Caddesi, Arapoğlan Sokak No.6, Istanbul, Turkey; Tel: 90.212 293 6660
Writer: Marie Le Fort
The Flying Elk, Stockholm, Sweden
Swedish chef Björn Frantzén - he of Stockholm’s Michelin-starred Frantzén/Lindeberg - wants to convey a love for British pub culture. For his new top-end bistro, he's created a menu of ‘proper pub grub’, with hearty dishes like fish and chips, macaroni cheese and sticky toffee pudding. Local design firm Sandellsandberg has realised an Anglophile interior featuring panels in oak and copper, Chesterfield-style seating and lamps by Tom Dixon and Niche Modern.
Mälartorget 15, Stockholm, Sweden; Tel: 46.8 20 85 83, www.theflyingelk.se (opens in new tab)
Writer: Micha van Dinther
Photographer: Mathias Nordgren
The Fish Club, Paris, France
Following on from a slew of international openings, the boys behind the original Experimental Cocktail Club are back in town - this time with a new seafood eatery aptly called The Fish Club. To gather inspiration for his daily changing menu, chef Thibault Tournaire (who until now was second in command to Thomas Brachet at the Beef Club) spent time in Peru under the wing of celebrated cook Pedro Miguel Schiaffino. Here he serves up an array of fish dishes, from Peruvian-style ceviche to oysters and caviar.
The 200 strong wine list - which will also include craft beers and pisco cocktails - is by Beef Club sommelier Nicolas Smith. Meanwhile the interior is by the group’s resident designer, Paris-based Dorothée Meilichzon, who focused them around a 1950s theme and added graphic Aztec prints in vibrant colours.
58 rue Jean Jacques Rousseau, Paris, France; Tel: 33.1 4026 6875
Writer: Lauren Ho
Hornhuset, Stockholm, Sweden
Stockholm’s most happening neighbourhood is currently Kniv-Söder ('kniv' as in 'knife', named for its violent past), recently nicknamed Fork and Knife Söder due to it’s many new restaurants, bars and cafés. The area’s latest edition is the family-run restaurant complex Hornhuset, set in a trapezium-shaped structure built by local firm Wester+Elsner from lego-like blocks with the gaps filled by large, slanting windowpanes. The three-storey structure accommodates two restaurants, a large bar and French rotisserie. Hornhuset's 'krog' cuisine is centred around seasonal vegetables prepared in a Mediterranean fashion. Design outfit Koncept Stockholm has designed the interiors, allowing each floor to reflect an individual style according to vibe and price point.
Långholmsgatan 15b, Stockholm, Sweden; Tel: 46.8 525 20260; hornhuset.se (opens in new tab)
Writer: Micha van Dinther
Photographer: Linus Flodin
Fatty Crab, Hong Kong, China
Fatty Crab brings a touch of New York ‘ghetto chic’ to Hong Kong with an outpost of its speakeasy-inspired cocktail bar and restaurant, serving Southeast Asian flavours with an unpretentious twist. Interiors by Candace Campos of local firm ID are an eclectic mix of utilitarian concrete, brick and steel with unique details like industrial lamps by Workstead, original graffiti and vintage-newspaper wallpaper. The ambience may be decidedly insouciant but mixologist Philip Ward is serious about his ‘Where’s Wallace' cocktail, a heady concoction of Thai chilli-infused blanco tequila, Manzinilla sherry, fresh celery juice with lime juice and salt. Together with the signature dish - chilli crab and watermelon pickle and crispy pork - it makes this the hottest table in town.
G/F 11-13 Old Bailey Street, Hong Kong, China; Tel: 852.251 2033
Writer: Catherine Shaw
The Grain Store, London, UK
After the success of his eponymous Bistro at the Zetter in Clerkenwell, Bruno Loubet has once again collaborated with mixologist Tony Conigliaro to launch the Grain Store in London's King's Cross. The bar and restaurant are owned by longtime collaborators Mark Sainsbury and Michael Benyan, whose properties include Bistro Bruno Loubet and the Zetter Townhouse. The interior, designed by Russell Sage (whose previous work includes The Savoy and The Goring), is based on the idea of 'the exploded kitchen' and blurs the lines between kitchen and dining room.
The bar menu categorises cocktails by flavour, including savoury (represented by the truffle martini) and smoked (a long wine list) and has a large proportion of non-alcoholic cocktails with unique blends like watercress and mint water. Loubet's unique menu promotes vegetables to equal billing with meat and fish. The hype should settle into what is a relaxed dining environment.
Granary Square, 1-3 Stable Street, London, UK; Tel: 44.20 7324 4466; www.grainstore.com
Writer: Benjamin McKee
Photography: Amy Murrell
Gilligan's, New York, USA
Manhattan stalwart Soho Grand has kicked off its summer season with the opening of a pop-up restaurant in its adjacent courtyard. Gilligan's is a nautically inspired restaurant that serves hearty, weather-appropriate fare in a private al fresco environment, right in the heart of Soho. The changing menu is simply comprised of ten items, ranging from a roasted beet salad served with horseradish crème fraiche and arugula, to thin-crust pizza Margarita and Coppa, and a whole sea bass atop grilled asparagus and salsa verde. Each dish appears at the table in generous, share-friendly portions, which adds to the laid-back, convivial nature of the place, itself adorned with cabanas, picnic tables and buoys.
Nick Hatsatouris and Lincoln Pilcher are the masterminds behind the courtyard's tropical makeover; the duo was also responsible for last summer's Montauk hit, Moby Dick, which transformed a hidden marina into a waterfront bar. Gilligan's isn't all about food either: the walk-in restaurant is equipped with three tiki bars doling out cocktails, including a signature watermelon margarita (garnished with slices of the fruit spiced with salt and chilli powder), which should have all its patrons asking for more way past September.
310 West Broadway, New York, USA; Tel: 1.212 965 3000; www.grandlifehotels.com (opens in new tab)
Writer: Pei-Ru Keh
Tørst, Brooklyn, USA
Chef Daniel Burns (previously of The Fat Duck, Noma and St John) has teamed up with Danish gypsy brewer Jeppe Jarnit-Bjergsø to open a beer hall and restaurant in Brooklyn. Named Tørst, Danish for thirst, the watering hole features no fewer than 100 bottled beers and a state-of-the art draft system with 21 taps. Local design firm hOmE created an austere setting utilising oak and reclaimed woods for the tables, walls and flooring. Midcentury chairs come from Danish designer Børge Mogensen and light is provided by antique Danish street lamps. Danish artist Eske Kath and Swedish graphic designer Karl Grandin collaborated on quirky art for the bathrooms, while music by DJ Martin Fernando Jakobsen is a mix of Mongolian folk, Pakistani surf rock and Caribbean calypso.
A restaurant called Luksus (or 'luxury') will serve a five-course tasting menu combining seasonal North American ingredients with the flavors and techniques of Scandinavia - all paired with exclusive beers, of course.
615 Manhattan Avenue, Brooklyn, USA; Tel: 1.718 389 6034
Writer: Carole Dixon
Melina Keays is the entertaining director of Wallpaper*. She has been part of the brand since the magazine’s launch in 1996, and is responsible for entertaining content across the print and digital platforms, and for Wallpaper’s creative agency Bespoke. A native Londoner, Melina takes inspiration from the whole spectrum of art and design – including film, literature, and fashion. Her work for the brand involves curating content, writing, and creative direction – conceiving luxury interior landscapes with a focus on food, drinks, and entertaining in all its forms
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