On the radar

Tag: design

29 Oct

Art & Design Flourishing in Cape Town

Cape Town is one of the world’s great cities.  The setting alone is worthy of top billing.  And then you have a vibrant culinary scene,...

21 Jun

The Whitby Hotel – New York’s Latest

Tim and Kit Kemp, founders of Firmdale Hotels, have just opened their second NY property at 18 West 56th Street, 2 blocks from Central Park...

23 Sep

A Restaurant That Is Also An Inn

Francis Mallmann’s Restaurant Garzon is arguably Uruguay’s best restaurant and one of the finest in all of South America.  But...

21 Nov

Kappo Masa

I love good food, but I am no foodie.  I look at the aesthetics, the noise levels, the service, the comfort of my seating – even the...

23 Apr

Some Great TED Talks

As I told my son last night, I believe that one of the most valuable additions to our lives of the last dozen years is the TED talk. We watch,...

29 Nov

Babylonstoren

I am in a privileged position of sitting ringside at the ever-changing landscape of innovative hotel properties.  I travel to, I read about,...

12 Nov

Majorelle Shopping

The Majorelle Gardens are a must visit in town as is the revamped Berber Museum. Clever shopkeepers, knowing that they have a captive audience,...

1 Sep

Nairobi Life

    Coming back to Nairobi is to come home. The smell of early morning fog, birdsong transected by the passage of small aircraft,...

26 Aug

Copenhagen

Copenhagen is quietly cool.  It has always been the fresh faced capital of northern  Europe – betwixt in between Scandinavia’s...

7 Aug

The Siam

I have been waiting for two plus years for The Siam to open, ever since I met the wonderful family who envisioned this stylish and ambitious...

4 May

Uzbek beautiful fabrics

My good friend, Laura Aviva – she with the sublime eye matched only by huge curiosity and courage – has sourced this gorgeous, vintage...

11 Mar

Hei Fung Terrace

One of the most evocatively beautiful restaurants I have seen in a long time is Hei Fung Terrace, the Peninsula Tokyo’s Cantonese restaurant....

2 Mar

The Old & The New

A 500-year old Shinto shrine at the foot of the new Prudential Financial building in central Tokyo.

2 Mar

A Day in Tokyo

A day in Tokyo that brought together Buddhism, a pocket garden, Mitsukoshi’s remarkable Food Court and my pretty impressive sushi lunch...

1 Mar

Morning Shinto Visit

Just behind the serenely beautiful Capitol Hotel Tokyu where I am staying is a charming Japanese Garden and an old Shinto Shrine. An early riser,...

31 Jan

A Tale of Two Cities

Vahram Muratyan is the author and artist behind Paris versus New York:  A Tally of Two Cities, a blog that  pits the pride and joy of both...

25 Jan

Casa Sur Art Hotel

Casa Sur is a really good, reasonable alternative to the grand hotels of Recoleta, the Alvear, Park Hyatt, Mansion Algodon and Four Seasons....

27 Dec

Rio’s Hotel Santa Teresa

One tends to think beach when looking at Rio’s top hotels and the Fasano usually tops the list.  But there is a new Design Concept Hotel...

11 Nov

Fogo Island

Fogo Island:  The landscape is startling and honest, unsentimental and unafraid.  The weather is a member of the community…the winds...

8 Nov

Fjallnass: In the Land of 8 Seasons

There is a mountain hotel that reigns over a landscape of pure, unspoiled beauty.  It is Sweden’s oldest in the mountains, having received...

Follow the road

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Kusama’s piano
Rabbits (huge  French rabbits), squirrels, hedgehogs and beavers all together in this animal cafe
Wonderful Art Deco house built for Prince Asaka’s family in 1933. After the war the Asaka family was demoted to commoner status and the house became a State guest house and now a museum. The demotion of Asaka and other princely families is part of a current discussion regarding the current Imperial succession line which is tenuous. One solution would be to allow females to succeed. Another is to reinstate some princely families to strengthen the succession options
And, finally, the sword guard which a metalworker might spend a year making. Each depicts miniature worlds reflecting the artist’s soul
Next is the hilt, made from a core of magnolia wood, wrapped in the skin of Asian stingray, and then bound with threads, generally In a diamond pattern to provide a firm grip.
I ended my very warm day (94F feels like 104F) in the sleek, cool, new Japanese Sword Museum. Who would have thought it would be so pleasing to the senses?  Here are the sword story pieces In separate postings as the photos look better singly. The katana, with blade curved upward (first photo) was carried by Samurai on horseback. The Tachi, blade curved downward, was carried by Samurai on foot and usually had a groove carved into the blade to lessen the weight.  They are forged, tang and blade, in one piece. These are prize winners from “jewel” steel and signed by Masters.  It is the tip, I am told, that is the most challenging part of the blade to make.