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A Letter From Asia: Samarkand, Uzbekistan

By Sophie Ibbotson How is it that a city has so much energy, so much creativity, that it can reinvent itself over and over again for more than 2,700 years? I was pondering this over breakfast this morning in Samarkand. Alexander the Great conquered this Central Asian city at the heart of the ancient Silk […]

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GASTRONOMIC GALLIVANTS: Olivar Suites

By Sophie Ibbotson There’s nothing more emblematic of the Mediterranean than a grove of olive trees where the branches catch the breeze, their leaves sprinkled with the salty spray of the sea. Olive oil is not only a key ingredient in the local diet, and credited with increasing longevity, but it’s also in soaps and […]

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A Letter From Europe: Palermo, Sicily

By Sophie Ibbotson Salutamu! If there is ever a day when the sun doesn’t shine in Palermo, I haven’t seen it. Sicily is an autonomous region of Italy, and Palermo is its capital. It is famed for its architecture, culture, and gastronomy, so I am doing my very best to immerse myself in all three. […]

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GASTRONOMIC GALLIVANTS: Elevated Tasting Menus in London

Ormer Mayfair by Sofian…Executive chef Sofian Msetfi The gastronomic experience began immediately upon being seated by Lorenzo, the maitre d’. He was expecting us. In the heart of London’s Mayfair, the alacrity with which he greeted and seated us was a bit unexpected. This part of town is famous for its very formal, upper- crusty, […]

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The Swank List – Fall 2022

Something for Everyone…     The Brrrn Can you feel it? So there’s getting your fitness on with Peloton but what’s missing? Sideways exercise, that’s what. We often focus on forward/backward motion fitness but miss out on toning and working out many muscle groups when we don’t include lateral exercises in our regimen. Lacking lateral movement […]

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Swellegant Stays: Francis Hotel, Bath, England

What does it mean to be quintessentially British? At Francis Hotel in Bath, it’s about balancing history and tradition with creative, contemporary life. The Grade I listed building is a magnificent example of John Wood the Elder’s Georgian architecture. It is in the heart of the UNESCO World Heritage city, and located just across Queens […]

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