New Grecotel Model Academy Introducing Younger Guests To The World Of Beauty And Fashion

June 9, 2014 on 9:03 am | In Fashions | Comments Off

What child hasn’t entered the land of make-believe through fancy-dress parties and Halloween costumes? Wearing mum’s high heels, using the bath towel as Batman’s cape or having tea parties with imaginary friends has been part of kid’s play for generations. Grecotel, the leading Greek luxury hotel chain has taken dressing up to a whole new level with its new “Be a model for a Day” programme. The unique holiday experience gives 10-16 year olds the chance to learn the latest tips about fashion, make-up, hair styling and at the end of the week-long course, take part in the catwalk show. Even the ancient Greeks believed that beauty was more than skin deep, so aspiring junior models are also immersed in a wellness regime to learn about the healthy Cretan diet, muscle tone, dance and relaxation.

The Grecotel Model Academy is run by a team of professionals (including photographer, fitness, make-up, spa therapists) at selected Grecotel hotels in Crete and the Peloponnese during July and August. Due to its personalized approach, the maximum participation each week is just 12-14 junior models.

Highlights include:

• Each participant takes home: Personal photographs (digital & printed in model book), dietary tips, make-up & modelling advice and Grecotel Model Academy certificate

• Master classes: Skin care and make-up; photo modelling; fashion advice according to body type; healthy hair and styling; nutrition for teens; posture & catwalk practice

• Fitness activities include: Aqua gym, climbing wall, personal training, dance classes.

• Spa day including facial, manicure, foot scrub & pedicure using natural spirulina & algae products.

• Dietary classes and suggested dishes in hotel restaurant are marked with Grecotel Model Academy logo.

Grecotel has been known for over 30 years as the hotels which let parents relax whilst their children are entertained. In addition to the new Model Academy, the 21 Grecotel Hotels & Resorts in Greece offer daily activities in the Grecoland clubs, Discovery Adventures where young explorers learn about the fragile planet through play and even GrecoBaby equipment for babies and tots.

The Model Academy programme is available at Grecotel Creta Palace in Rethymno, Crete and the Grecotel Olympia Riviera Resort in Kyllini, West Peloponnese, free of charge during selected weeks in July & August 2014.

Over thirty years since its formation, the N. Daskalantonakis Group is Greece’s largest hotel company featuring 29 hotels and resorts in Greece’s most sought-after destinations. Its three distinctive collections of properties – Grecotel Exclusive Hotels and Resorts, Grecotel Luxury Hotels and Resorts and Grecotel Premium Hotels and Resorts – redefine the very concept of Mediterranean hospitality. Recognised as the market leader (ICAP) and most significant employer in the Greek hospitality sector, Grecotel has been awarded over 1500 international awards for the quality of its hotels, upgrading of the Greek tourism product and for initiatives in the environmental and cultural field.

The Group’s overriding maxim is to communicate the ‘Real Greece’, by ensuring that each property is located in a prime tourist destination and gives each visitor an authentic experience of Greece’s ancient

Jetstreams for Travel Discounts

heritage, mythology, local culture, hospitality and cuisine.

Afternoon Tea – Delivered To Your Door ‘Cotswolds Style’ –

May 25, 2014 on 10:26 am | In Beachbooker, Dine Drink, Fashions, London, United Kingdom, Wales | Comments Off

Cotswold cottage experts have recently teamed up with ‘The Chipping Norton Tea Set.’ to offer Manor Cottages guests the opportunity to enjoy a unique ‘Cotswold Afternoon Tea’ experience in their very own cottage.

Managing director of Manor Cottages Chris Grimes comments “Just because our guests choose the freedom of staying self-catering, it shouldn’t mean they can’t indulge in a few little luxuries. Taking Afternoon tea is the norm in hotels, restaurants and tea rooms across the UK so why should our cottages be any different? The team at ‘Chipping Norton Tea Set’ are true tea enthusiasts and certainly deliver afternoon tea in style. One of my personal favourites is the Luxury Cotswold tea but there is plenty to choose from or you can opt for a bespoke tea.”

Based in the heart of the Cotswolds, The Chipping Norton Tea Set offers bespoke vintage tea parties for all occasions. Prices start from £13.50 per person for the ‘English Afternoon Tea.’ The team can accommodate a range of dietary requirements. There may be a small charge for travel depending on the location of your cottage.

For parties of 15 and under the tea is delivered to the door, set up with beautiful vintage china and linen and the menu of choice. After a few hours the ‘tea set’ return to clear the table and pack everything away, no washing up required.

Victoria Wills, creator of ‘The Chipping Norton Tea Set comments “Chris and his team are great supporters of local businesses in the Cotswolds area. A partnership with Manor Cottages was a very natural progression for us and the perfect way to grow the business. Not to mention great fun. Afternoon tea is a real event for all involved. Manor Cottages guests are always pleased to see us when we arrive. They enjoy the theatre of watching us lay out the tea out, seem delighted as the cakes appear and certainly appreciate being let off the washing up, for the afternoon. It’s the perfect holiday treat.” For more details or to book, see

Stay in Manor Cottages Tithe Barn in Lyneham from £924 for a three night weekend break in June. That’s just £30 per person per night based on ten sharing. The barn sleeps up to ten people in four bedrooms. A spacious barn conversion great for a family or group of friends, the dining area or garden is ideal for serving afternoon tea. Not to mention access to brilliant walks in every direction. To book a cottage see or call 01993 824 252.

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For media information or images call Rachele Snowden on 0208 9815466 or 07793 844274 alternatively email

Editors Notes:

Manor Cottages is the leading Cotswolds self-catering cottage agency.

Founded in 2007 by Chris Grimes, the company has just under 300 properties and provides a fine collection of holiday cottages and houses across the Cotswolds. The company has recently expanded this portfolio to include the stunning cities of Bath, Oxford and nearby villages. Arguably three of the most stunning locations in the UK, every featured property is carefully selected to ensure the perfect mix of, luxury, style and charm, satisfying a range of holiday needs and budgets.

All properties in the Manor Cottages portfolio are furnished to a high standard and well equipped to suit the modern traveller. Properties sleep from two to twenty people and many are pet friendly. Whether guests are exploring picturesque villages and countryside or relaxing in a home from home, they can be assured all the properties offer an enjoyable stay at the right price.

The website is flexible and user friendly with easy access to special offers. Guests have a wide choice of locations across the region. Cottages can be selected based on the nearest town, number of rooms, bathrooms, or by more specific personal requirements such as near a pub, wi-fi or disabled access. Length of stay is highly flexible with long stays available too.

Choosing the perfect property couldn’t be easier as Manor Cottages have highlighted some groups of cottages at a range of price levels based on region, size or geography so guests can find a perfect match. Last but not least the news pages and blog provide great ideas and inspiration to enhance any stay.

From an owners perspective Manor Cottages provides a ‘careful pair of hands.’ Based in Burford at the heart of the Cotswolds the Manor Cottages team has a great knowledge of the area and understands that holidaymakers and owners alike need personal attention and consideration.

Chipping Norton Tea Set Editors Notes:

The Chipping Norton Tea Set was setup just over two years ago, after the owner ‘Victoria Wills’ had a request from her daughter for a Vintage afternoon tea party for her 18th birthday. The party was extremely well received, so fuelled by her love of baking, Victoria ventured to turn the concept into a business in its own right. Victoria waved goodbye to her long term career in bookkeeping for one of cakes and tea.

Weeks of acquiring vintage china, cutlery and linen ensued and they can now cater for many events from weddings, christenings and, most popular of all, holiday cottage events and gatherings. The team have sufficient crockery to cater for up to 150 guests and rising. The business really is going from strength to strength. In the first year they hosted just 15 events, so far this year they have hosted another 30 with more to come. For more details on the menu or to book a tea even see  or call 07967 833 979

Paris in Spring: The Perfect Place For Retail Therapy

April 7, 2014 on 10:15 am | In Europe, Fashions, France, Paris, Shopping | Comments Off

Shoppers, especially visiting shoppers, take to the boulevards of Paris with devotion and a ritual flair that almost elevates the great department stores into cathedrals. You only have to watch the crowds as they walk the aisles of Printemps, Le Bon Marche and the Galleries Lafayette to appreciate the city’s status as the pre-eminent capital of shopping.

Paris is also a city of art and a singular boutique hotel, located just off the Champs Elysées, the Pavillon des Lettres is celebrating the confluence of art and shopping by launching a new series of photo exhibitions in its lobby, and of course, the photos are for sale. It begins with an exhibit by Marie Gruel, which pays homage to the Historic La Samaritaine Department Store. Gruel’s “Ma Samaritaine” exhibit will be up at Le Pavillon des Lettres through June 25.

The literary-themed Pavillon des Lettres will rotate exhibits of original artwork that complement the hotel’s permanent art and sculpture collection. Gruel’s “Ma Samaritaine” show consists of 15 photographs of La Samaritaine, the department store overlooking the Seine that is famous for its Art Deco interiors and is currently on the verge of transformation by LVMH into a grand commercial space. Gruel, along with 11 other photographers, was given carte blanche to shoot the historic space, which she used as a backdrop for artistic displays of clothing, accessories, and souvenirs. The Gruel exhibit will be followed by a show of nudes from Paris-based photographer Michael Dak (June 15 to Oct. 15.

Each of the hotel’s 26 rooms celebrates an international writer from Charles Baudelaire to Victor Hugo. Each room features an excerpt from one of the author’s books, poems or plays, which is painted above the bed, and a hard copy of the work is on the nightstand. The penthouse suites on the top two floors offer sweeping views of the Eiffel Tower and the Grand Palais. Rates at the hotel begin at €230.

Over at the Mandarin Oriental, Paris, a new luxury shopping experience comes in the form of a package that allows guests VIP access to the city’s famous department store, Printemps Haussman. Printemps has been a leading department store since 1865. With its remodeled façade, classified as a historic monument, the Printemps has 45,000 square meters dedicated to the rites of shopping as well as seven restaurants.

The J’aime la MOde package combines a stay in the hotel with an exclusive private shopping experience at the department store. Printemps offers premium services including a VIP welcome, bespoke in-store personal service, store VIP Card, ‘hands-free’ shopping, local delivery, and shipping.

Guests will be helped by a personal shopper, fashion advisor, and luxury and beauty treatments (on appointment).

The package includes one night at Mandarin Oriental, Paris, breakfast for two in-room or at Camélia, a daily spa credit of €150, premium services at Printemps Haussmann, VIP welcome, Printemps VIP Card with a special offer, multilingual personal shopper, hands-free shopping, priority tax refund, local delivery and international shipping, and a Printemps candle gift. The ‘J’aime la MOde’ package is available year-round with a starting rate of €995.

First-Ever Festival of Beauty at The Forum Shops at Caesars

March 13, 2014 on 9:50 am | In Fashions, Gaming Resorts, Las Vegas, Shopping | Comments Off

Features Live Beauty Presentations, Make-Up Demonstrations, Mini Makeovers, Giveaways, Music and More

Two-day make-up and skincare event celebrates beauty March 21-22

LAS VEGAS (Feb 24, 2014) – Wondering how to get the freshest looks in beauty and skincare for spring? Wonder no more with the first-ever Festival of Beauty at The Forum Shops at Caesars. Mark your calendars for March 21 – 22 between 1 p.m. – 8 p.m. to celebrate the first-ever Festival of Beauty at The Forum Shops. A free, two-day extravaganza, visit Dior Beauty, Fresh, Inglot, Kiehl’s Since 1851, MAC Cosmetics and Sephora at The Forum Shops to enjoy live beauty presentations, make-up touch ups, music, beauty bars, product demonstrations and more. Plus, be sure to register at any participating store to win one of many exciting gifts including shopping sprees and beauty products. There is no purchase necessary to take part in the Festival of Beauty.

To add to the celebratory atmosphere during The Festival of Beauty, visit the VEGAS/RATED RECHARGE ZONE – relax, tweet, and post your favorite beauty finds in the VEGAS/RATED recharge zone near the Fountain of the Gods. While there, enjoy Real Water, relax with some music and delight in the custom, floral decor by Flora Pop.

Festival of Beauty Happenings:

Dior Beauty – Dior Beauty make-up artist will demonstrate looks for spring. A DJ and make-up touch up station will be available.

Fresh – Enjoy mini skin rituals, hand and arm massages and lip treatment rituals

Inglot – Take part in makeover applications for spring/summer colors and trends. Learn the tricks for easy false lash application, as well as complexion and couture demonstrations.

Kiehl’s Since 1851 – Visit Kiehl’s Since 1851 for skincare demos, 20-minute mini facials, demos, hand massages, and hand product demos from the Kiehl’s product line. Enjoy DJ and refreshments as well.

MAC Cosmetics – Pick your Demo at MAC Cosmetics. Whether it’s the eye, lip, or skin, customers can choose the demo they would like.

Sephora – Inspire your beauty with Radiant Orchid, Sephora + Pantone Universe Color of the Year. Experience its deeply flattering flush and ravishing glow with: custom mini-makeover for eyes, lips, and cheeks, personalized tricks and techniques, a complimentary look book featuring professional steps to master exhilarating new looks at home. BONUS: take home an official Sephora + Pantone Universe Pouch—free with your personalized Color of the Year consultation and any $25 purchase.* *While supplies last.

Recognized worldwide as one of the finest luxury shopping streets in the world, The Forum Shops is proud to host a one-of-a-kind event in celebration of beauty. Don’t miss the Festival of Beauty at The Forum Shops!

For additional information and updates about the first annual Festival of Beauty at The Forum Shops visit us at

Istanbul Designers debut in Los Angeles Fashion Week 2014

March 12, 2014 on 9:46 am | In California, Fashions, Los Angeles, Turkey | Comments Off

On the 15th of March 2014, Istanbul Designers will be presented under Concept Shows for the 2014-15 Fall/Winter Collections by the most sought after Turkish designer Özgür Masur, showcasing Turkey’s vision and strengths in the fashion and textile industries.

Fufther Informaiton:

Reykjavik Fashion Festival: March 27-30, 2014

March 7, 2014 on 9:26 am | In Fashions, Iceland, Webbandstand | Comments Off

This year marks the fifth annual Reykjavik Fashion Festival (RFF), an event that celebrates Iceland’s creative energy by combining fashion, design, and music at venues around Reykjavik. The festival serves as an international platform for eight of Iceland’s best designers to showcase their new collections. This year, RFF is collaborating with DesignMarch to offer events like DesignTalks led by designer Calvin Klein. Click here to learn more about this unique event.

The Best Time to Shop in Milan

February 15, 2014 on 11:23 am | In Fashions, Italy, Shopping | Comments Off

Armani Hotel Milano

Armani Hotel Milano is situated in the prestigious Manzoni 31 building in Milano, Italy, anchoring the world-famous couture district, known as the quadrilatero della moda. It is only a few minutes away from the luxury shopping streets of Via Montenapoleone and Via della Spiga, the famous La Scala theatre and the spectacular Piazza del Duomo. The launch of Armani Hotel Milano follows the opening of the world’s first Armani hotel in Dubai, located within the Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest building.

Personally designed by Giorgio Armani, the hotel features 95 elegantly appointed Guestrooms and Suites, resonating the simplicity and elegance of the Armani style. An extensive food and beverage experience is available through its culinary outlets and lounge. In addition, the hotel features an Armani/SPA and a well-equipped business center.

The Armani style and philosophy defines every detail of the 95 guestrooms and suites of Armani Hotel Milan. Each element has been personally designed by Giorgio Armani and chosen for sculptural, aesthetic and sensual qualities. In-room amenities are specially tailored for the utmost convenience of guests and feature comfortable sofas, lounge chairs, butler stations, remote controls and an LCD flat screen television with full HITV capability.

Armani/Ristorante draws on the rich gastronomic traditions of Italy to provide classic and authentic culinary delights in an intimate and refined setting. Open for lunch and dinner, the dishes take advantage of fresh produce served amidst an elegant ambience with expert and attentive service. Armani/Ristorante features a unique Enoteca, with an exclusive and wide selection of wine, and a marble Chef’s table located within the kitchen. Overlooking the magnificent skyline and terraces of the city, Armani/Lounge offers guests an exclusive yet elegant ambience.

Armani Hotel Milano promises a “home-away-from-home” experience in line with the Stay with Armani philosophy. The Armani approach goes beyond visual aesthetics, offering a new level of service under the lifestyle service department with a Lifestyle Manager concept. Armani Hotel Milano’s Lifestyle Managers are representative hosts, anticipating guests’ needs and ensuring that guests get the most out of their stay and your visit Milan.

ARMANI/SPA – Located on the top floor and nearly 13,000 square feet, the Armani/SPA offers individual treatments, with its six treatment rooms, personal fitness, steam and sauna experience, refreshing juice bar, and private and social relaxation thanks to the magnificent relaxation pool and its glass roof and walls.

Armani Hotel Milano’s fitness center features a Kinesis Wall as well as a wide range of cardio vascular and modular resistance machines. A Personal Trainer is available upon request and can be arranged through a Lifestyle Manager.

Armani/Business Center is spread over 2,100 square feet, with a private meeting room and two boardrooms. The facility has also been equipped with its own pantry and can therefore cater directly for the meeting room and boardrooms and the needs of the guests using them. State-of-the-art equipment will be available for audio/visual presentations, with remote-controlled lighting, computerized equipment and video conferencing facilities.

Address: Armani Hotel Milano
Via Manzoni, 31
20121, Milano, Italy
Tel: +011 39 02 8883 8888

Emerging Designers in Vienna

February 11, 2014 on 1:56 pm | In Austria, Fashions | Comments Off

Making quite a splash on the fashion scene, a wave of smart boutiques refreshes the heart of the Neubau creative district.
Shopping Lindengasse © WienTourismus, Karl Thomas
Vienna on the map

Not far from Vienna’s famous Mariahilferstrasse shopping street, a bevy of talented designers is turning narrow Lindengasse into a hub for cutting-edge fashion.

At Freaks & Icons, Mandarina Brausewetter channels graffiti in her striking T-shirts and puff-sleeved blazers made from sweatshirt fabric. Sharing shelf space are edgy international labels where classic meets avant-garde. Diagonally across the street, Melanie de Goederen’s Buntwäsche caters to next-generation fashionistas with soft cotton tops that you can customize with a range of cuts, colors, sleeve lengths and prints—and then pair them with frilly skirts and colorful leggings.

Sandra Gilles’s la petite boutique tempts impulse buyers with delicate lace shirts and airy cloth bags. At Wabisabi, Japanese minimalism marks Stefanie Wippel’s collection of asymmetrical shirts, dresses and billowy pants in a black and white palette that can be mixed in endless combinations of chic. Camille Boyer personally selects the young designers and labels from across Europe that turn heads at her eponymous shop.

Looking for smart leather bags? You’ll find them at Ozelot, along with Kontiki bags recycled from bicycle inner tubes. For sophisticated shoes and jewelry, turn to the studio community at Werkprunk. Two other Lindengasse standouts are Elke Freytag, known for her form-flattering dresses and bold accessories, and Maronski, for fun and flirty casual wear.

To discover more extraordinary Austrian designers, fashion devotees can join a “Shopping with Lucie!” tour. The American expat and former fashion stylist canvases the 7th District to uncover hidden it-studios and boutiques for you.

What’s New In The Capital Region USA 2014

January 12, 2014 on 10:24 am | In Adventure Travel, Dine Drink, Fashions, Festivals, Hotels, Mobile Apps, Museums, Night Clubs, Outdoors, Performing Arts, Rail Tours, Road Trips, Spa Resorts, Sports Travel, Spring Break, The South, Theme Parks Zoos Aquariums, USA, Webbandstand, Weddings Honeymoons | Comments Off


200th Anniversary of the Star-Spangled Banner, throughout 2014
2014 marks several anniversaries in the Capital Region USA, the most monumental of which is the 200th anniversary of the Star-Spangled Banner. Baltimore is the birthplace of the American National Anthem and it was here in September 1814, during the Battle of Baltimore in the War of 1812, that Francis Scott Key penned the poem that became the USA’s National Anthem. Visitors to the Capital Region can experience The Battle of Caulk’s Field Bicentennial Re-enactment 2014(30-31 August) as well as the 1812 Fair and Re-enactment at Jefferson Patterson Park and Museum (21 – 22 June 2014) in Maryland; tour Fort McHenry, the star shaped fort which successfully defended the city of Baltimore against British invasion, and observe the massive flag which resides over the fort; learn about a young African American servant called Grace Wisher who worked on the flag at a major exhibit at Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History & Culture from 17 May – 16 November 2014; finally, visitors can observe the original American flag currently on display at the National Museum of American History in Washington, DC.

Visitors can also drive the 100 mile Star-Spangled Banner Byway along the Chesapeake Bay and through historical locations significant to the War of 1812, as well as the opportunity to enjoy a number of events throughout Maryland from 6 September until 16 September 2014. For more information on events, visit  #starspangled200

50 years since the Beatles played in DC, 11 February 2014
The Beatles performed their first American Concert at The Washington Coliseum (a.k.a. Uline Arena) on February 11, 1964, two days after their triumphant performance on Ed Sullivan. On 11 February 2014, exactly 50 years from that day, this concert will be reenacted as exactly as possible at this historic site. In the audience that night were several personalities that went on to larger visibility, including former Vice President Al Gore. Proceeds of this re-enactment concert will go to The DC Preservation League. There will be an exhibit of Photographer Mike Mitchell’s iconic photos of the 1964 concert (he was an 18 year old freelancer at the time) and a short documentary (in the midst of being produced) to be shown before the concert which will include interviews with audience members and original photos. For more information visit,

400th Anniversary of Pocahontas’ Wedding to John Rolfe, 5 April 2014
The true love story which shaped American history will be marked by special programs and exhibits that explore the interaction between Indians and English Settlers. On 5 April 2014, visitors can experience a re-enactment of the wedding at the actual site where it occurred in Historic Jamestowne. For more information, visit

70th Anniversary of D-Day, 6 June 2014
The National D Day Memorial in Bedford, Virginia, will mark the occasion with a special ceremony including an honour guard, interactive veteran’s history stations, a reunion tent, USO show, guest speakers and more. The town of Bedford suffered more loses, per capita, on D-Day than any other locality in the United States and was chosen as the site of the National Memorial as emblematic of all U.S. communities, large and small, whose citizen-soldiers served on D-Day. For more information, visit

Hotel News:

Marriott Marquis Washington, DC opens on 1 May 2014
The much anticipated Marriott Marquis Washington, DC Hotel will offer 1,175 rooms, including 49 suites, and more than 100,000 square feet of event space when it opens on 1 May 2014. Connected to the adjacent Walter E. Washington Convention Center by an underground concourse, the Marriott Marquis will be conveniently located near Penn Quarter and close to CityCenter DC and the Verizon Center. Property highlights include 54 breakout rooms, outdoor terraces, and retail and restaurant space. For more information, visit

Opening Spring 2014: Upscale City Market at O Leads Evolution of Hip Luxury Suites
City Market at O is an upscale mixed-use development featuring restaurants and a new Cambria Suites. Located one block north of the Convention Center, the hotel will offer more than 182 all-suite rooms, a rooftop pool, and a terrace with sweeping city views. City Market at O will open in spring 2014. For more information, visit

Aloft BWI Hotel and The Chesapeake Arts Center Launches Monthly Art Exhibits
Aloft BWI Hotel and The Chesapeake Arts Center in Brooklyn Park have teamed up to present monthly art exhibits and Meet the Artist receptions. Launched in September 2013, the works of a new artist will be on display in the hotel’s main lobby each month. The exhibits will culminate with a Meet the Artist reception each month. For more information visit or

The Inn at Herrington Harbour Offers Seaplane Excursions
The Inn at Herrington Harbour has begun offering Seaplane excursions over the Chesapeake Bay. At a cost of $95 per person, the twenty-minute excursions are available on Saturdays and Sundays from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. Seaplane excursions will resume in summer 2014. For more information, visit or

America’s Newest Luxury Resort, Salamander Resort and Spa, opens in Virginia
Salamander Resort and Spa is a 168-room luxury resort set on 340 acres amid Virginia’s famed horse country and lush vineyards. The hotel opened in August 2013 and is located in the storied village of Middleburg. The resort is owned by Sheila C. Johnson, founder and CEO of Salamander Hotels & Resorts. The resort features 25 acres of land dedicated to equestrian activities, a luxurious spa with private courtyard and infinity pool, Virginia Piedmont-inspired dining overseen by award-winning DC Chef Todd Gray, a cooking studio, wine bar, and numerous conference and event facilities, including a 5,000-square-foot grand ballroom and a restored, century-old Stallion Barn.For more information, visit

Shopping News:

CityCenter DC Opens in December 2013
CityCenter DC is a 10 acre urban hub mixing hotel space, condominiums, offices, restaurants, shops and more – all within walking distance to the convention center and two Metrorail stations. CityCenter DC is ideal for event activities, including dine-arounds and team-building. The New York Times called it a “modern-day Rockefeller Center.” CityCenter DC will open in phases beginning in December 2013. For more information, visit

Culinary and Winery News:

More Than 25 New Wineries to Open in Virginia in 2014
Virginia is known as the ‘state for lovers’, and is an award-wining wine region. 2014 will see more than 25 new wineries open bringing the total of wineries in Virginia to more than 250. The state is currently the fifth largest wine producing state in the United States, and Virginia wines continue to win top awards in world-wide competitions. For more information, visit

‘A Flight You Can Look Forward To’ – Flight Wine Bar Opens in December 2013
Flight Wine Bar, owned and operated by husband and wife team, Swati Bose and Kabir Amir, is due to open in Washington, DC in December 2013. Bose and Amir will open with an approachable wine list featuring over 30 options by the glass including lesser known varietals and labels from around the world. A selection of domestic and international beers, boutique spirits and a weekly wine-based cocktail will also be on the menu. The 60-seat wine bar will also serve shareable plates designed to complement the diverse wine list. For more information, visit

Howard County Restaurant Boom Offers a Taste of the World
Howard County, a county located in the central part of Maryland, will welcome a number of exciting new restaurants in 2014 which will include flavours from all over the world. Restaurants include Facci Ristorante- authentic Italian cuisine featuring an imported wood burning pizza oven, Grille620- a modern twist on the American steakhouse, Highland Inn- a new dining experience with a focus on seasonal foods and purity of flavours, The Grille- featuring American and Mediterranean cuisine, White Oak Tavern- a tap house serving exquisite farm-to-table pub food, Xitomate Cocina Mexicana & Tequila Bar- Specializing in small plates of authentic Mexican cuisine with an immaculate collection of the finest Tequilas. For more information on Howard County, visit

Attraction and Activity News:

Smithsonian Opens Newest Museum in 2015
The Smithsonian will open its newest museum in 2015, the National Museum of African American History and Culture in 2015. On 18 November 2013, the first two artefacts arrived at the museum, including a railway train car made by the Pullman Company in 1922, which is currently under construction on the National Mall. For more information, visit

Six Flags America Adds Two New Thrilling Rides for 2014
Six Flags America is adding two new rides in a brand new area of the amusement park that is conveniently located just outside of Washington, D.C. The new rides are the park’s ninth roller coaster, Ragin’ Cajun, a spinning coaster, and French Quarter Flyers, a family-friendly flying ride. Both attractions will be located in the festive new Mardi Gras section of the park. For more information, visit

American Chestnut Land Trust Launches New Trail Offering Stunning Views of the Chesapeake Bay
The American Chestnut Land Trust (ACLT) has opened a new gateway to connect people to the 3,000-acre Parkers Creek Preserve in central Calvert County along the western shore of the Chesapeake Bay. The new 4.5-mile section of trail connects Prince Frederick to ACLT’s existing north-side trails. The trail allows hikers to experience the full breadth of the Parkers Creek natural area by continuing to a new overlook platform the land trust built to provide wintertime views of the Chesapeake Bay and the mouth of Parkers Creek. The full 6.1-mile trail is called “Prince Frederick to the Bay” or “PF2Bay” for short.

In addition to its two existing trailheads – one on the north side of Parkers Creek off Dares Beach Road and one on the south side of the creek off Scientists’ Cliffs Road – ACLT now welcomes visitors to its newest Prince Frederick trailhead that starts just off Main Street in Prince Frederick. Parking for the new trail as well as maps and the sign-in area are at St. John Vianney Roman Catholic Church. It is recommended that hikers leave one car at Double Oak Farm before hiking, and then take a second car to the Prince Frederick trailhead. The trail is open from dawn to dusk throughout the year. The trail is closed during deer firearms season for safety.
For more information, visit

Geppi’s Entertainment Museum Launches ‘African Americans in Comics, Pop Culture, and Beyond’ Exhibit Milestones: African Americans in Comics, Pop Culture and Beyond showcases the vast talent and wonderful innovation that came from or was influenced by African Americans, including the important contributions of publishing executives at companies such as Dark Horse Comics, DC Comics and Marvel Comics. This special exhibit will embrace the totality of Black comics. With a significant focus on Black creators and their art, the exhibit will pull together experts, essayists, filmmakers and creators from inside and outside the world of comic books to fully explore the successes, triumphs, failures and expectations for the future of this vital component of our national fabric. The exhibit will run from 14 December 2013 – April 2014. For more information, visit and

B&O Railroad Museum Celebrates Black History Month in February 2014
The B&O Railroad Museum opens a new African American exhibit that celebrates the contributions of African Americans to the railroad industry. Learn about the men and women who filled vital jobs along the B&O Railroad’s line and understand how significant social issues, such as segregation, affected railroading. New exhibits focus on African American passenger travel during segregation and chefs and waiters who worked on B&O dining cars. The exhibit runs from 1 February to 28 February 2013. For more information, visit

Chrysler Museum of Art Reopens and Celebrates 70 years of the Smokey Bear American Icon
The Chrysler Museum of Art, located in Norfolk, Virginia, is to reopen in April 2014 after an extensive renovation and expansion. Exhibits to mark the reopening will include 70 Years of Smokey Bear, the American icon whose motto is “Only You Can Prevent Forest Fires”. For more information, visit / or

Busch Gardens Williamsburg Opens Multi-media Rock Spectacular
Opening in Spring 2014 at Busch Garden Williamsburg, Virginia, London Rocks takes visitors on a musical journey that explores the roots of rock-n-roll and transforms Busch Gardens’ Globe Theatre into a rousing 25-minute live action and multi-media rock spectacular. The musical revue explores the powerful role that music plays in people’s lives. A team of more than 200 musical directors, designers, technicians and artists is taking on this ambitious Busch Gardens’ production. For more information, visit

The Aquarium Adventure Park opens in Virginia Beach in Summer 2014.
Appealing to outdoor fun-seekers ages five years old and up, the Adventure Park, located on the campus of the Virginia Aquarium, will feature multiple zip lines and aerial ropes challenge courses. Activities at the park are forest-friendly, requiring only human power—no motors or machines. For more information, visit

Virginia Museum of Fine Arts Opens Exhibition of Artworks from the Palace Museum, Beijing
A new exhibition, the Forbidden City: Imperial Treasures from the Palace Museum, Beijing will open at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts from 18 October 2014 – 11 January 2015 as part of collaboration with the Beijing Palace Museum, China’s largest art museum and the largest palace in the world. The exhibit will showcase more than 180 portraits, sculptures, textiles and unique artefacts from the Ming (1368-1644) and Qing (1644-1911) dynasties. Enhanced by 3-D virtual technology, the exhibit offers an immersive experience as if passing through the Forbidden City during the height of its glory. For more information,

Transports News:

New Baltimore – DC Weekend Rail Service Launched on 7 December 2013
The Maryland Transit Administration is now offering a weekend MARC train service between Baltimore and Washington, DC. The trains will make nine Saturday round trips and six Sunday round trips between Penn Station in Baltimore and Union Station in Washington. The service is expected to be especially appealing to international travellers touching down at BWI Thurgood Marshall Airport in Anne Arundel County. About 45-percent of BWI’s business comes from the Washington region. For more information, visit

New Silver Line Metro Extension Connects DC to Surrounding Cities
The Silver Line Metro Extension (also known as the Dulles Corridor Metrorail Project) is currently well underway. The new line will connect DC to surrounding cities including the retail mecca of Tyson’s Corner, Virginia. The line to Tyson’s Corner is expected to open in 2014; the line connecting Washington Dulles International Airport is expected to open in 2018. For more information, visit

DC Streetcars (trams) to Arrive in DC
DC Streetcars are expected to start service in early spring 2014 along H Street and Benning Road NE. For more information, visit

Virginia Launches Jamestown Discovery Boat Ride
New in 2014 is Jamestown Discovery, a 90 minute boat tour on the beautiful James River that travels around the historic Jamestown Island. All tours are handicap accessible and offer a new view of the history and beauty of the river. A website is not available at present but for more information, visit their Facebook page –

To find out more about the Capital Region USA, visit

A World of Vintage Treasures and Collectibles Awaits Visitors to the Bendigo Region this Summer

January 11, 2014 on 7:23 pm | In Australia, Fashions, Shopping, Victoria | Comments Off

Just over two hours’ drive from Melbourne, in Bendigo and its surrounding Goldfields villages, awaits a mecca for lovers of collecting, with retro and vintage shopping and artisan boutiques to be found. The heritage streetscapes of shady vine-covered verandas peppered with alfresco café furniture and racks of vintage wear are the perfect place to while away a summer’s afternoon. This summer, visitors can commence a day of vintage retail therapy with a visit to Modern Love at the Bendigo Art Gallery (until 2 February); a showcase of the world’s most influential designers from the past 40 years and the ultimate retail reconnaissance.

The historic city of Bendigo and its surrounding villages offer a refreshing cultural and contemporary scene, with quirky shops, romantic stores, quality dining, creative, passionate producers and artisans. A visit to Bendigo would not be complete without visiting the art, design and antique boutiques of View Street. Housed in a classic Victorian building, SB Libris is a traditional book bindery with shelves brimming with beautiful, leather bound books and stationary. Just a few doors away is the View Street Bazaar, a store brimming with an eclectic collection of antique, art deco and retro curios from all corners of the globe, and a little further along View Street is Julie’s Clothing Boutique & Antique Gallery; a treasure box for lovers of designer vintage clothing, shoes, bags and jewellery. A short drive out of town is the famous Bendigo Pottery, Australia’s oldest working pottery maker which also houses a gallery with works from local potters, artists and sculptors and an antiques and collectibles centre with over 30 independent stall holders.

A scenic half hour drive from Bendigo awaits Castlemaine, a beautifully preserved historic village; home to a dizzying array of quality vintage and retro boutiques. Makers, sewers and collectors of treasures will love Habadash, an emporium of buttons, stunning laces, trims, ribbons, fabrics, jewels and rarities that will enhance any antique and vintage collection while The Restorers Barn, housed in an original 1856 furniture store, boasts a huge collection of retro architectural fittings and collectibles. Meanwhile, bibliophiles can immerse themselves in the wonders of the written word at Book Heaven where there’s 90,000 second hand books, records, comics and collectables to choose from.

A 15 minute drive from Castlemaine is Maldon, a character-filled village with a historic streetscape and an abundance of treasures to be found. The original Victorian-era hotel, The Grand Maldon, houses not only an impressive range of old wares and gifts but self contained apartment-style accommodation in the property’s original stables. The Cascade Print Room Gallery in the heart of Maldon proudly showcases a unique collection of artist-made prints and the works of some of Central Victoria’s best known visual artists. Visitors planning to visit Maldon over the summer months should be sure to time their trip to coincide with the not-to-be-missed Maldon Antique & Collectibles Fair (Saturday 15 and Sunday 16 February 2014) with a football ground full of rare and valuables treasures to choose from.

Nestled on the banks of the Loddon River, just a few minutes drive from Maldon, is the vibrant town of Newstead. Well worth a visit is Antares Iron Art Gallery, a beautiful art garden and open air gallery established by landscape gardener, stoneworker and sculptor, Roger McKindley and featuring a constantly evolving collection of artistic creations.

At the heart of nearby Maryborough is the majestic 1874 Maryborough Railway Station, a building which today houses a stunning collection of antiques and collectibles at Station Antiques as well as the Maryborough Station Café. Down the road on Nolan Street, Amaroo (82 Nolan Street) stocks a dazzling array of porcelain, antiques and vintage homewares and around the corner the Central Goldfields Art Gallery is housed in the historic 1861 fire station and features an ever changing display of works by local and regional artists.

A little further up the road is Inglewood where secret women’s business is thriving. The village’s five antique and collectable stores including Inglewood Emporium and Fusspots at Inglewood are all run by ladies, a sisterhood that is helping bring vintage-lovers flocking to historic Brooke Street. An afternoon dipping into the mother-of-all fancy dress boxes in Inglewood is a must for vintage and retro fashionistas.

Instagram: @GoldfieldsVictoria #goldfieldsvictoria

Background Notes:
The Victorian Goldfields Tourism Executive (VGTE) is the peak tourism organisation for the Goldfields region established in 2013 with the charter of driving the tourism direction and building on the already robust brands of Ballarat and Bendigo. Working in close partnership with Ballarat Regional Tourism and Bendigo Regional Tourism, VGTE seeks to develop a strong, synergised regional tourism presence between Ballarat and Bendigo and their surrounding villages and shires.

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