Travel with Christina Valhouli: What’s New Around The World

AKM will be the central home for Istanbul’s 21st-century arts and culture scene, containing one of the largest opera houses in the world as well as art galleries, libraries, cafes and restaurants.

NEW HOTELS | Going on safari? Wilderness Safaris recently opened the new Qorokwe Camp in Botswana’s southeastern Okavango Delta, while Natural Selection expands to Namibia in May with the opening of Hoanib Valley Camp in Kaokoland, which will have just six guest tents. Art lovers should book a room at the upcoming 21C in Kansas City, Missouri, a combination hotel and museum. The historic Hotel Saranac in New York’s Adirondacks recently re-opened following a four-year, $30 million restoration. Dreaming of a beach vacation? Consider the stylish new Park Hyatt St. Kitts. The beachfront hotel will also be home to a Miraval Life in Balance Spa. The new Burgenstock Hotels & Resort Lake Lucerne includes three hotels, an inn and 12 restaurants in a variety of architectural styles, and is located on a ridge high above Lake Lucerne. Aman Hotels are known for their sleek design and unparalleled service, and one of the newest properties is the Amanyangyun, located in a camphor forest just outside of Shanghai. Country music lovers have a new place to stay in Nashville, the midcentury-inspired The Fairlane Hotel. Another Southern Belle is the Perry Lane Hotel, located in Savannah, GA. Or, try tiny home living while on vacation at Canoe Bay ESCAPE Village in northwestern Wisconsin. Guests that fall in love can also purchase a tiny home. New York’s Seaport District is in the midst of a revitalization, and this spring sees the debut of Mr. C Seaport from the Cipriani Group. The hotel will have a nautical-inspired look.


NEW RESTAURANTS | It’s impossible to go hungry in Charleston, South Carolina, and one of the newest places to indulge is Tu, from the team behind the popular Xiao Bao Biscuit. The menu is inspired by travel and comfort food. Yuyo is Austin’s first contemporary Peruvian restaurant by El Chile Group and features a ceviche bar, and charcoal-grilled street food. In Berlin, the Golden Phoenix includes a restaurant, cocktail salon, nightclub and champagne garden helmed by Chef Duc Ngo. The menu is Franco-Chinese fusion; think ricotta-yuzu raviolis. Lexington, Kentucky opened its first food hall, The Barn, offering everything from Greek street food to craft ice cream and ramen. San Francisco’s The Onsen is a combination bathhouse and restaurant – come here for tea, sake and small bites like trout poke. INKO NITO is a new Japanese restaurant in downtown Los Angeles from the team behind the legendary Zuma and ROKA. Rosaliné is a Peruvian restaurant taking LA by storm. Order a pisco sour and a grilled branzino.


TABANLIOGLU ARCHITECTS | An award-winning global architecture firm, Tabanlıoglu Architects, has announced the reconstruction of the Ataturk Cultural Center (AKM) in Istanbul. Renowned architect Murat Tabanlıoglu is modernizing the cultural center his father, Dr. Hayati Tabanlıoglu, once designed in the 1960s (and redesigned in the 1970s after a fire). AKM will overlook the iconic Taksim Square and will be completed in 2019, as part of Turkey’s modernization efforts.

NEW MUSEUMS | When it debuted in late 2017, the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa became the largest contemporary art museum in Africa. The museum showcases art solely from the continent and the African diaspora, and is located in a former grain silo. The Louvre Abu Dhabi, designed by French architect Jean Nouvel, opened at the end of 2017. The museum showcases works on loan from the Paris Louvre while building its own collection. In Canada, Toronto’s Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) will re-open this Spring 2018 in the iconic Tower Automotive Building. The new Royal Alberta Museum in Edmonton is the largest museum in Western Canada. The building’s architecture reflects Alberta’s diversity of landscapes and culture, and the galleries highlight the area’s archaeological and cultural stories. This spring, Richmond, Virginia, will debut the VCU Institute for Contemporary Art. The non-collecting museum will continuously showcase a fresh slate of changing exhibitions and performances.

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ASPIRE DESIGN AND HOME is seeker and storyteller of the sublime in living. It is a global guide to in-depth and varied views of beauty and shelter that stirs imagination; that delights and inspires homeowners as well as art and design doyens. Collaborating with emergent and eminent architects, artisans, designers, developers and tastemakers, ASPIRE creates captivating content that savors the subjects and transports with stunning imagery and clever, thought-provoking writing. Through lush and unique visuals and a fresh editorial lens, ASPIRE explores what is new and undiscovered in art, interiors, design, culture, real estate, travel and more. ASPIRE DESIGN AND HOME is an international narrative and resource for all seeking the sublime.