Category Archives: Venice

By @ 01/14/20 in Gay family travel, Gay travel, Leyla Farah, ManAboutWorld, Paris, Travel, Venice

Our correspondent Leyla Farah visited Europe with her family. Here’s her update and more about Leyla below!

Leyla Farah visits Paris & Venice and brings us back this report

Paris:
The Louvre
  • If you spent 5 seconds in front of every work of art at the Louvre it would take you 4 months to see everything – if you didn’t sleep! The Louvre is all about planning ahead since there’s quite literally no way to see it all. Our picks for your list of “must see” items beyond the basics?
  • (1) Go underground to walk along the Medieval moat that protected Paris during the time of the Crusades. It was uncovered as part of an  archeological dig in the mid 1980’s, and now helps visitors trace the evolution of the Louvre from a fortress to a royal residence and finally to the museum that stands today.
  • (2) Don’t miss the stunning (and we mean STUNNING) apartments where Napoleon III lived in the early 19th century. They include lavishly decorated rooms, jaw-dropping works of art, and – of course – a diminutive throne.
  • (3) For a little extra sparkle, get up close to the display cases that feature the French Crown Jewels – including a magnificent 141 carat diamond.
The Paris Christmas Market:
  • If you’re visiting Paris between mid-November and the Catholic holiday of Epiphany (which marks the end of the Christmas holiday on the first Monday in January), be sure to check out the Christmas Market in the Paris’ Tuileries Garden (just up from the Louvre).
  • With everything from unique regional vendors and eateries, to carnival rides and ice skating, it’s fun for visitors of all ages. Be sure to try the “vin chaud” or “hot wine” for sale at nearly every eatery.
  • And, if you’re not afraid of heights, try to time your trip up the Ferris wheel so you’re near the top for the famous Eiffel Tower light show (which lasts for 5 minutes every hour on the hour in the evenings). There’s no better view in all of Paris.
New Food Faves:
  • There’s really no such thing as a bad meal in Paris, but we did discover some new favorites on our last visit.
  • (1) When we had a hankering for something other than a continental breakfast, we headed to the Strada Cafe (24 rue Monge) in the Latin Quarter (there’s also one in the Marais at 94 rue du Temple). We loved their otherworldly French toast topped with whipped orange butter, omelettes with pumpkin seeds (who knew?) and astonishingly good coffee. The servers also speak impeccable English, just in case your French is a little rusty.
  • (2) Le Bistro Marbeuf (21 Rue Marbeuf in the 8th – just off the iconic Champs-Élysées) has been a food destination for years, but it was our first visit. We were on the hunt for steak frites, and theirs didn’t disappoint, but the real standouts were an impossibly velvety carbonara and a trio of ice creams – raspberry, salted caramel and coffee – that made our eyes roll back in our heads.
Leyla Farah visits Paris & Venice and brings us back this report
Venice:
  • No visit to Venice is complete without a visit through the glittering gold leaf interior of St Mark’s Basilica on the Piazza San Marco – a true masterpiece of Byzantine-style architecture. But the awe-inspiring Doge’s palace right next door provides visitors with a more visceral look at the true power of the Venetian city state from the 14th to the 18th centuries.
  • More than just the residence of the Doge (Duke) of Venice, this palace also housed critical bureaucratic, executive and judiciary government functions. Don’t miss the “secret tour” – which covers the more delicate (or “secret”) government activities like torture, executions and political tribunals.
  • Feeling peckish after your tours of the architectural and artistic gems on the Piazza San Marco? Head over over to Rossopomodoro Venezia (Calle Larga San Marco, 404) where you can sit and enjoy some of the best pizza in Venice (if you’re lucky, you might even get to see them turn out and shape the dough that’s been rising for hours in enormous traditional wooden proofing boxes), or just grab a quick bite from their take away window so you don’t miss a beat.

More about Leyla

Born in San Francisco and raised in the Middle East, Leyla Farah is the product of a unique collection of ethnic roots that extend from Brazil to Norway. A world traveler from infancy, Leyla has the uncanny ability to live like a local – without sacrificing life’s little luxuries – almost anywhere on earth. Her refreshing mix of high-end standards and real-world perspective make her your ideal (wo)ManAboutWorld.

Follow Leyla on Twitter @ldfarah

Connect with Leyla at About.me/ldfarah

 

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By @ 01/28/16 in Gay travel, Phil Rake, Travel, Venice
A dashing gondolier in Venice and in ManAboutWorld gay travel magazine

A dashing gondolier


It’s easy to fall in love with Venice (and possibly even fall in love in Venice). The city’s splendour is beguiling and intoxicating – the moment you spy the gondoliers navigating the Grand Canal, you will be hooked and you won’t want to leave. This Venice update is brought to us by ManAboutWorld correspondent  Phil Rake.

Built up around clusters of tiny islands, connected only by an array of bridges, Venice is so cleverly and beautifully crafted, it looks and feels as if it’s floating on water. This illusion of ‘floating’ is part of what makes the city so alluring – the waters of the Adriatic are always in sight, lapping against the walkways and buildings, waiting to encroach.

But it’s what’s above the surface that will truly enthral you. The city has some of the most grand architectural structures you will ever see, like the Byzantine inspired Basilica di San Marco and the Venetian-Gothic Doge’s Palace – products of its affluence and of a time when Venice was the principle trading hub between Europe and Asia. The city is also renowned for its art and culture, with the legacies of famous Venetians like Vivaldi, Tintoretto, Titian and Andrea Palladio living on in and around, not only Venice, but also the world at large. Whether your a fan of classical music, opera, history, art or cuisine, you won’t be short of things to see or do in Venice.

The Grand Canal in Venice and in ManAboutWorld gay travel magazine

The Grand Canal

But the most thrilling way to experience Venice, is to wander the different sestieri (or neighbourhoods) and allow yourself to get lost amongst the narrow thoroughfares and maze-like alleyways. Secret courtyards decked in marble, hidden gardens that overlook the canal, and secluded passageways that lead to stunning vistas – you’ll be amazed at what you can discover. 

Venice is exceptionally pretty, so there is never a bad time to visit. In the Spring and Summer, the sun infuses the city with a warmth and glow, lighting up the buildings like radiant treasures. However, like the French Riviera, Venice in the high season gets unbelievably busy, so prepare yourself for the crowds. If you aren’t put off by the drop in temperature, then you should definitely visit in the colder months, as there is a haunting beauty to Venice at this time of year, especially when it’s misty. There is also a greater chance of experiencing the fabled acqua alta or high tides, which flood parts of the city (thereby creating opportunities for some potentially amazing photos).

View of the Chiesa di San Geremia from the Grand Canal in Venice and in ManAboutWorld gay travel magazine

View of the Chiesa di San Geremia from the Grand Canal

Regardless of when you visit, Venice is one of those places you can’t help falling in love with. Like a kiss from a handsome Gondolier, this city will take your breath away and you won’t be able to resist its charm.

ManAboutWorld has plenty more info on Venice and many more destinations around the world! Download our very cool digital gay travel magazine for destinations around the globe. Find the ManAboutWorldApp on the iTunes App Store or Google Play. We support iPads, Android tablets, iPhones and Android phones. There are a few free publications in all of the apps, and you can click here to register for a FREE three-month subscription. Go on, what are you waiting for!



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By @ 01/19/16 in Bangkok, Boston, Buenos Aires, Gay travel, ManAboutWorld, New York, Toronto, Travel, Venice

City Seen gay travel update in ManAboutWorld gay travel magazineManAboutWorld magazine’s City Seen keeps you up to date on gay travel options in major global cities. ManAboutWorld’s peripatetic correspondents stay on top of cool things to do in a few dozen of our favorite metropolises. Here’s this month’s gay travel update.

Natural Gourmet Institute, NYC, in Towleroad and in ManAboutWorld gay travel magazine CIty Seen gay travel update section

Natural Gourmet Institute

NEW YORK, NY
You’ll find the Natural Gourmet Institute,a hidden gem, on the second floor of a non-descript Chelsea office building, where every Friday night they set the communal tables and light the candles for a three-course vegetarian (often vegan and/or gluten-free) BYOB dinner. Prepared by the student chefs and chef instructors of NGI’s Chef Training Program, it’s a unique local experience — and very affordable at $45.Billy Kolber

BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS
The Godfrey Hotel Boston is scheduled to open early January 2016 in Boston’s much improved Downtown Crossing district, which was the primary retail area of Boston a century ago then went into a decline towards the end of the 20th century. With its central location between Boston Common and the financial district, Downtown Crossing is re-emerging with trendy new residential and commercial buildings. The hotel, situated in a gorgeously renovated building, will offer luxurious accommodations in the center of the city as well as complimentary high-speed WiFi and other perks. — Kenny Porpora

BUENOS AIRES, ARGENTINA
If you’re in BA, check out the fabulous new Kirchner Cultural Centerwhich has already been welcoming approximately 10,000 patrons a day who walk around an ornate, turn-of-the-last-century building that has been converted into what promoters claim is the fourth-largest cultural center in the world. Best of all, everything in it is free, from video installations to comedy acts to symphony concerts and contemporary musical acts. — Pablo DeLuca

BANGKOK, THAILAND
The Accor-managed Pullman Bangkok Hotel G provides a nice option for gay travelers thanks in part to its location at Silom 188, just a few blocks away from all the action. The hotel was recently remodeled and includes an excellent breakfast. The gym could use an update, but it is sufficient. The hotel may remind you of Delano in Miami: very white, clean and modern. If you want an amazing facial treatment, make a left out of the hotel and bring that tired mug into Dahra Beauty and Spa at Silom 154 for some pampering. — City Seen correspondent, Michael Siebert 

TORONTO, CANADA
Rapper Drake and Restaurateur Sursur Lee opened Fring’s Restaurant, a posh, celeb-laden Asian fusion hot-spot, in September, drawing heaps of headlines and a glitzy grand opening. The clubby downtown hangout is inside the old Crush Wine Bar and is expected to be the new see-and-be-seen dinner spot, with celebrity DJs, a full bar, and menu by the renowned Lee. — Robert Sharp

VENICE, ITALY
In the past several years, the very gay-friendly Caffe Centrale has benefited from significant upgrades. The eccentric and modern space feels more elegant and sexy. The service is friendlier and the food, which was wonderful to begin with, is even more scrumptious. Be sure to try the beef tenderloin in Amarone wine sauce or maybe the Catalana of crustaceans (salad of grilled shellfish), but definitely order their mojito in the pot, for dessert. It’s Venice, so you can even have a gondola drop you off, or pick you up, from their canal-side dock. Now how romantic is that? — Arthur Wooten

Venice in Towleroad and in ManAboutWorld gay travel magazine CIty Seen gay travel update section

Venice

 For even more gay travel inspiration and trip-planning information and suggestions for destinations, tours and events download ManAboutWorld’s latest issue. Start planning your next trip now!

This was originally published in ManAboutWorld’s December issue and re-posted in Towleroad on December 18. Photos: Top: Hans Randecker via Flickr Creative Commons; Middle: Courtesy Natural Gourmet Institute; bottom: Courtesy City Seen correspondent Arthur Wooten

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