Joint Security Area between North and South Korea

October 15th, 2018 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General

Military Demarcation Line © Kallgan

Military Demarcation Line © Kallgan

The Joint Security Area (JSA) is the only portion of the Korean Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) where North and South Korean forces stand face-to-face. It is often called the Truce Village of Panmunjom in the media and various military accounts. The JSA is used by the two Koreas for diplomatic engagements and, until March 1991, was also the site of military negotiations between North Korea and the United Nations Command (UNC). The Joint Security Area is lying within the village of Panmunjom.   read more…

Matera in Southern Italy

October 12th, 2018 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, European Capital of Culture, UNESCO World Heritage

© Tango7174/cc-by-sa-4.0

© Tango7174/cc-by-sa-4.0

Matera is a city in the province of Matera in the region of Basilicata, in Southern Italy. It is the capital of the province of Matera and the capital of Basilicata from 1663 to 1806. The town lies in a small canyon carved out by the Gravina. Known as la Città Sotterranea (“the Underground City”), Matera is one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world, having been inhabited since the 10th millennium BC. Its historical center “Sassi“, along with the Park of the Rupestrian Churches, is considered a World Heritage Site by UNESCO since 1993. On 17 October 2014, Matera was declared Italian host of European Capital of Culture for 2019 with the Bulgarian town of Plovdiv.   read more…

Yorkville in Manhattan

October 10th, 2018 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, New York City

90th Street and Second Avenue © flickr.com - mike/cc-by-sa-2.0

90th Street and Second Avenue © flickr.com – mike/cc-by-sa-2.0

Yorkville is a neighborhood in the Upper East Side of Manhattan, New York City. Its southern boundary is East 79th Street, its northern East 96th Street, its western Third Avenue, and its eastern the East River. The neighborhood, in Manhattan Community Board 8, is among the most affluent in the city. In August 1776, George Washington stationed half of his Continental Army in Manhattan, with many troops in the Yorkville area in defensive positions along the East River to protect the other half of his army if they were to retreat from Brooklyn, and to inflict damage on invading land and sea forces. Following the Battle of Long Island defeat on August 27, the Continentals implemented an orderly pivoting retreat in the Yorkville area, leading the enemy to entice the Continentals to fight by piping “Fly Away”, about a fox running away from hounds. The Continentals’ disciplined northerly retreat led to the successful Battle of Harlem Heights in September 1776.   read more…

German Emigration Center in Bremerhaven

October 8th, 2018 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: European Union, General, Museums, Exhibitions

© PhilippN/cc-by-sa-3.0

© PhilippN/cc-by-sa-3.0

The German Emigration Center (German: Deutsches Auswandererhaus) is a museum located in Bremerhaven, Germany dedicated to the history of German emigration, especially to the United States. It is Europe’s largest theme museum about emigration. Visitors can experience the emigration process through interactive exhibits. The museum also provides access to databases of immigration records. The museum with a area of 4200 square meters opened on August 8, 2005. The design for the museum came from the Hamburg architecture studio Andreas Heller.   read more…

Hotel Adlon in Berlin

October 5th, 2018 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: Berlin, General, Hotels

© Denis Apel/cc-by-sa-3.0

© Denis Apel/cc-by-sa-3.0

The Hotel Adlon Kempinski Berlin is a luxury hotel in Berlin. It is located on Unter den Linden, the main boulevard in the central Mitte district, at the corner with Pariser Platz, directly opposite the Brandenburg Gate. The original Hotel Adlon was one of the most famous hotels in Europe. It opened in 1907 and was largely destroyed in 1945 in the closing days of World War II, though a small wing continued operating until 1984. The current hotel, which opened on August 23, 1997, is a new building with a design inspired by the original.   read more…

Hearst Castle on the Pacific Coast Highway

October 3rd, 2018 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: Architecture, General, Palaces, Castles, Manors, Parks

Dining Room © Bernard Gagnon/cc-by-sa-3.0

Dining Room © Bernard Gagnon/cc-by-sa-3.0

Hearst Castle is a National Historic Landmark and California Historical Landmark mansion located on the Central Coast of California, United States. Designed by architect Julia Morgan, it was a residence for newspaper magnate William Randolph Hearst between 1919 and 1947. Hearst died in 1951, and it became a California State Park in 1954. The site was opened to visitors in 1958. Since that time, it has been operated as the Hearst San Simeon State Historical Monument, where the estate, and its considerable collection of art and antiques, is open for public tours. Despite its location far from any urban center, the site attracts “millions of travelers each year”. Hearst formally named the estate “La Cuesta Encantada” (“The Enchanted Hill”), but usually called it “the ranch”. Hearst Castle and grounds are also sometimes referred to as “San Simeon“, without distinguishing between the Hearst property and the adjacent unincorporated area of the same name.   read more…

The European Union: Quo vadis?

October 2nd, 2018 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: Editorial, European Union, General

Best of all first: The Eurozone today has greater approval among its citizens than it did in the past 35 years. This is not just any indicator, but a solid basis and a work order that has so far been adopted only in part to actually address ambitious, long overdue reforms and the necessary reorientation of the EU. A nice written white paper by the European Commission, which presents possible scenarios until 2025, isn’t enough. What is needed is an “EU Vision 2030” plan with clear timetables and sub-goals, which are constantly being updated, especially as new sub-goals always emerge from ongoing processes, where everyone can find orientation about ongoing and future developments, as well as participate or in marketing-speak “Europe need a common future and story!” This one is a bit longer and a summary of the current challenges and opportunities, while continuing the article The European Union: Blessing or curse? Past or future?.   read more…

The Marco Polo

October 1st, 2018 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: Cruise Ships, Yacht of the Month

Sailing yacht and Marco Polo in Tallinn Bay © Pjotr Mahhonin/cc-by-sa-4.0

Sailing yacht and Marco Polo in Tallinn Bay © Pjotr Mahhonin/cc-by-sa-4.0

MS Marco Polo is a cruise ship owned by the Global Maritime Group under charter to UK-based Cruise & Maritime Voyages, having been previously operated by Transocean Tours. She was built as an ocean liner in 1965 by Mathias-Thesen Werft as Aleksandr Pushkin for the Soviet Union‘s Baltic Shipping Company. After major alterations and additions, the ship sailed as Marco Polo for Orient Lines from 1993 to 2008.   read more…

One57 in New York

October 1st, 2018 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: House of the Month, New York City

© flickr.com - Anthony Quintano/cc-by-2.0

© flickr.com – Anthony Quintano/cc-by-2.0

One57, formerly known as Carnegie 57 and nicknamed “The Billionaire Building”, is a 75-story (marketed as 90-story) supertall skyscraper at 157 West 57th Street between Sixth and Seventh Avenues in the Midtown neighborhood of Manhattan, New York City. Upon completion in 2014, it stood at 1,005 feet (306 m) tall, making it the tallest residential building in the city for a few months until the completion of 432 Park Avenue. The building has 92 condominium units on top of a new Park Hyatt Hotel with 210 rooms, which is set to become the flagship Hyatt property. The building’s developer is Extell Development Company, the contractor is Lend Lease Project Management & Construction, and the architect is Christian de Portzamparc. As of January 2015, it is home to the most expensive residence ever sold in New York City.   read more…

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