The Charm Abandoned Places

Abandoned Ottmanic Train Trailer, Saudia Arabia Desert.

I have something for abandoned places. There is something both eerie and striking about them they truly charm me. Whether it’s a train cemetery in Bolivia or an Art Deco subway station underneath New York City, each location is a snapshot of history frozen in time. Take a tour of these mesmerizing sites around the world—stark reminders of what used to be, yes, but with beauty seeping through the broken glass and dust.

Valle dei Mulini (Valley of the Mills), Sorrento, Italy

Such places bring me into a silent and forgotten world, into places that was once lively and crowded. I’ve always wondered whether if any of the places we use now will be that charming when they’re left abandoned 1000 years from now. I think countries that has such beautiful abandoned buildings must maintain them and protect them.

Power Station, Belgium

The whistling of the wind penetrating into broken windows and doors, the sounds from surrounding nature are just magical for me at least.  I would not hesitate to roam the world if I had time, searching for abandoned sites, sanctuaries where time seems to have stopped after humans have evacuated them. Here I post captivating and melancholic images of abandoned places from all around the world.

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Perfection: Greek Hotel Made For Families with Little Travelers

Based on my personal experience traveling with kids is 10x harder Than traveling with adults. The kids nends special places that satisfy their desires and needs ! On the other hand though, I experienced  more that traveling with kids has become much easier (such a contradiction I know) but it all depends on the destination. It does take a bit more effort on the parent’s part but hotels have become much more accommodating and even have suites dedicated to traveling en-famille. You don’t have to forgo your love of travel just because you’ve added a couple additional travelers to your family. The Ekies All Senses Resort, a member of the Design Hotels collective, understands this sentiment and has created a Greek oasis for families on vacation with little travelers.

Located on the paradisiacal coastline of Halkidiki, Greece, the Ekies All Senses Resort owned by Alexandra Efstathiadou features 10 eco-luxury suites that encourage children to run free and explore, all the while encouraging adults to do the same. The newer Pine and Evergreen suites designed by Athens-based architectural firm Agarch+ seem to blend into the lush, rustic landscape of fauna and flora. The materials and decor incorporated into the suites, like the hand-laid herringbone stone flooring, are a nod to traditional Greek artisanship alongside modern furnishings, like pieces by Philippe Starck and Achille Castiglioni.

The suites come equipped with cozy loungers, hammocks and private soaking pools. And Alexandra’s mother’s family co-own Coco Mat, a company that produces natural sleep products, bed linens, towels, and furniture, all of which are used throughout the hotel.

Blue accent walls and tiles reflect the waters of the Aegean shores just mere steps away from the property. Illustrations and typography showcasing Greek poet Aesop’s fables adorn the walls of certain suites. There are 69 rooms and suites in total, each with their own pool, sea or garden view and each are unique in terms of color and decorations.

 

Alexandra shares her vision for the property:

” I wanted to display Greek culture but in a modern way. I wanted to create a new way for people to look at the country. It is a place filled with love. In other words, it’s the perfect place to spend with your family and little ones.”

What: The Ekies All Senses Resort
Where: Sithonia, Halkidiki, Vourvourou, 63078
How much:  Rates for the Pine suites start from $264 USD, rates for the Evergreen Suite start from $522 USD.
Highlights: This Greek hotel has all the modern amenities you need to stay more than comfortable while on vacation (we’re going to assume that it won’t be that hard on a beautiful property like this) but is a true escape into paradise with the lush landscaping, scenic views (Mount Itamos is just a drive away) and Greek-influenced interiors.
Design draw: Agarch+ chose materials and decor that give a nod to Greek craftsmanship while also maintaining a contemporary aesthetic with modern furniture and fixtures.

Book it: Visit the Ekies All Senses Resort

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Via Design Milk.

Photography: Getting Lost with Øystein Aspelund

Øystein Aspelund is a norwegian photographer who is interested in the relations between men and their environment. His splendid series have already been featured several times on different blogs. Today, he comes back with a wonderful series entitled Getting Lost which he describes as “a maze of random places”. The mysterious and remote atmosphere of the pictures takes us to a personal initiatory journey. Is there any better way to get lost ? I always try to explore cities gems by getting lost there always ..

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VW New Californian hippies Microbus is Back & Will Hit the Road in 2022



The Microbus is Back

On August 19, Volkswagen announced at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance in California that its electric microbus, the I.D. BUZZ concept car, will go into production. The new microbus will debut in dealerships throughout China, Europe, and North America in 2022, after the compact four-door version arrives.


“After the presentations at the global motor shows in Detroit and Geneva, we received a large number of letters and emails from customers who said, ‘please build this car’,” Volkswagen CEO Dr. Herbert Diess said at the event. Diess explained to attendees that the location of the announcement was deliberately chosen: “The Microbus has long been part of the California lifestyle. Now we’re bringing it back by reinventing it as an electric vehicle.”

New Tech, Classic Style

The production model I.D. BUZZ will feature all of the benefits of electric drive components, including a long wheelbase and lots of interior space. According to a CNET reviewer who drove the bus, its doors open and close automatically, like Tesla’s Model X, and with a 0-60 acceleration in under 5 seconds, it has the speed to match other electric vehicles— not that anyone driving one will be in much of a rush. The battery pack has a range of around 270 miles, on par with the Model X and the Chevy Bolt, and more than the Tesla’s Model S. The nearly flat front of the classic VW microbus will be retained, because the batteries will be mounted in the floor of the vehicle, just as they are in the concept version shown in Detroit in April.

The I.D. BUZZ is designed for multiple purpose: as a passenger vehicle, but also to carry freight just as the classic T2 did. “Along with a minibus version, we’ll also be offering an I.D. BUZZ CARGO variant for zero-emissions delivery of goods,” Volkswagen’s CEO of Commercial Vehicles, Dr. Eckhard Scholz said at the event. “With Level 3 autonomous capability, this is an ideal concept for an electric van, particularly for delivering packages and goods to the inner cities.”


The iconic VW microbus has a long history in America. It began production in 1950, and by the late 1960s had become a symbol of the hippie counterculture, with enough space to transport groups to rallies, concerts, and anyplace else. This new version of the classic retains a lot of this classic style and nostalgia, with maximum space utilization and recognizable elements of the beloved microbus style. The I.D. BUZZ will also incorporate various design ideas from the concept car, including interactive connectivity, multi-variable seating, and highly automated driving. It’s the hippie’s choice for the electric car revolution.

A Psychedelic and Cartoons Painted Building in Germany


If you go in Braunschweig, Germany, you will probably discover Happy Rizzi, the playful structure created by late pop art american artist James Rizzi in collaboration with architect Konrad Kloster. The different facades are drawn with colorful and psychedelic cartoons very characteristic of the artist’s style. Such a structure strongly contrasts with the authentic surroundings and offers a very joyful and surreal dimension to the town.

 

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The Alien lounge : HR Giger Bar

Can you imagine stepping inside this bar? Bar? Yes, it is just a bar called “HR Giger Bar“, found at the HR Giger Museum in Gruyères, Switzerland. HR Giger Bar is a cavernous, skeletal structure covered by double arches of vertebrae that crisscross the vaulted ceiling of an ancient castle.


The sensation of being in this extraordinary setting recalls the tale of Jonah and the whale, lending the feel of being literally in the belly of a fossilized, prehistoric beast, or that you have been transported into the remains of a mutated future civilization.


This is a really impressive design and I bet you will have a unforgettable drinking experience inside.

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The Beautiful Tree of Italy: Alberbello

Alberobello (Italian: means literally “beautiful tree”) is a small town and comune of the metropolitan city of Bari, Apulia, southern Italy. It has about 10,700 inhabitants and is famous for its unique trullo buildings. The trulli of Alberobello have been designated as a UNESCO World Heritage site since 1996.

Alberobello was first mentioned in the early 16th century when the first 40 families were granted land to farm in the area. The abundance of calcareous sedimentary material in the area lead to the building of houses with dry stone without the use of mortar. These houses were the first trulli which contributed to the expansion of the settlement. Building the houses of dry stone was a requirement of Count Giangirolamo II as in this way it was avoidable to pay taxes on them. (Source)

There are so many hidden jewels in Italy much more than what is marketed, I personally discovered many charming towns and destinations by chance when doing road trips. Alberobello was one of these findings. located on the heel of the shoe (Italy map), It is 5 hours drive from Rome by car probably 3 hours from Naples.

 

The town is small, most of its old houses are renovated and turned into hotels or tourists markets. Only couple of houses are left untouched to preserve the town history.

Alberobello and its surroundings is definitely a relaxing/sightseeing place, after sunset there is nothing much to do other than dinner and for me specially in that town was enough as their cuisine was amazing. While before sunset your day should be packed with activities according to your taste. The hotels there are pretty much the same in terms of exterior/interior design. If I was asked to recommend one it would be Il Gabellota Resort .

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UTOPIA !

 

These past couple of weeks I’ve been in full travel planning mode as I’m trying to organize everything for my upcoming business trips, so I couldn’t help but reminisce one of the most special spots I’ve ever stayed in. As you probably remember from previous post I mentioned that I will be visiting LA then VEGAS and back to LA. Los Angeles is one of my favorite places to travel too, Not only is it incredibly beautiful but there are also so many new places to discover every time you visit it. I wont share a travel guide with all my tips about where to eat, shop and have fun because to each his own ! I am just going to post about the hotels I stayed in and some of the places I liked.
so it’s high time I revealed the ultimate place to stay in the LA: Hotel Beverly Terrace ! It should be called Utopia though because at least to me the hotel is yard is just how I imagine Utopia!

Perched on a secluded hill overlooking the mountains of Beverly Hills, the hotel beverly terrace is the crown jewel of Beverly Hills hotels. The outer look of the hotel and the Lobby doesn’t reflect what its really like to walk in further inside. from the moment I’ve arrived I welcomed with chilled drinks at the bar. Shortly after checking in, I had a walk all around the hotel which really sealed the deal – and I was like this is going to be a fantastic 2 days.

The hotel was a maze of bright grey alleyways leading to the rooms. Some rooms like mine had a direct access to the yard pictured above. Its very hard to mix vintageness with modernness and come up with a masterpiece of design. I was positively surprised by how well it integrated with its surroundings. The atmosphere was also great – chic, relaxed and luxurious all in one. The hotel was not to big but it really had everything I needed: A rooftop area, an outdoor cocktail bar, a gym, a cute little busniess center and one of the best restaurants in the area.

The room was not spacious but very well designed to look so, spotless clean and beautifully decorated. Truth be told, I was worried it could be noisy as it also overlooked the yard/bar area, this was not an issue throughout my stay not at all. One of the things I really loved about the Hotel Beverly Terrace was how relaxed and intimate it felt. I typically spent my two nights unwinding by the roof, soaking up the sun, listening to great tunes and socializing with the amazing staff. That’s not to say that I didn’t get to enjoy the surrounding area too.

If you’re looking for a place in Los Angeles where you can treat yourself to a relaxing holiday, Then this hotel is absolutely the only hotel you should pick !

It may be pricey indeed but don’t let the cost startle you; you’ll be rewarded with one of your best traveling experiences for sure.

A special shout for the super amazing staff Yenory, Maria from the front desk and Aleckx from the bar/restaurants. At some places staff really make the difference !

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Hotel Review: Jumeirah Dar Al Masyaf Hotel

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In my humble opinion being a traveler who roamed all 5 continents this hotel is by far the best hotel I have ever stayed in for several reasons I that I am going to going on this post.

Located in Dubai Coast within a short walk of Souk Madinat Jumeirah, Jumeirah Dar Al Msyaf has 283-room spreader over 25 Villas, The 5-star resort welcomes business and leisure travelers with 2 indoor and 15 outdoor pools “13 pools are private” and a private beach. Each Villa “summer house” has 5-10 rooms accomidating 5-10 families only, a summer house would have its own lobby “very intimate check-in /Check-out experience”.  Each villa also have its own butler and private transportation method according to the guest will ” a baggy AKA golf cart”, walking through sensational views or take a heritage boat ride through the water channels of the resort which is my favorite one. For example to go for breakfast, beach or dine you can take one of the above mentioned transportation method, taking the boat is the most convenient taking into mind the views you will stumble on with just one ride.

Pierchic Bar Opening
Dining
This resort is home to 20 onsite restaurants, perfect for a quick bite to eat. Savor a meal from the comfort of your room with 24-hour room service, or entertain your taste buds with a beverage at the bar/lounge or coffee shop/café. Start your day off with buffet breakfast, available for a fee. Also if you paid for a halfboard which I always do, you will get a voucher for second meal in any of these 20 restaurants all over the resort.

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Rooms
The 283 air-conditioned accommodations feature furnished balconies and afford space to spread out with living rooms. Guests can expect 36-inch TVs with digital channels and DVD players, along with free WiFi and wired Internet. Select Comfort beds with Egyptian cotton sheets and pillow menus ensure a restful night, and bathrooms offer deep soaking tubs, rainfall showers, hair dryers, and designer toiletries. Sofa beds, minibars, and free newspapers are other standard amenities. Make sure to always ask for an upper floor water faced room.

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Property features
Jumeirah Dar Al Masyaf – Madinat Jumeirah features a private beach, a full-service spa, private lobby, private pools and 2 indoor pools. You can take advantage of free valet parking, along with an airport shuttle (available on request) for AED 375 per vehicle roundtrip. A multilingual staff is on hand to assist with dry cleaning/laundry, concierge services, and luggage storage. Other amenities at this beach resort include 15 outdoor pools, a free water park, and couple of nightclubs and lounges.

 

Highlights

  • Close to Wild Wadi Water Park and Burj Alarab hotel.
  • Free WiFi in rooms and public areas
  • Free valet parking
  • Onsite dining
  •  Private lobby
  •  Happy hours at the private lobby for each villa from 6-8pm providing free drinks and refreshments.
  •  Private pools
  • The most scenetic place in Dubai.