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April 2014

JIM BYERS PHOTO. The Richardson Olmsted Complex near downtown Buffalo is being restored and turned, in part, into a boutique hotel and architecture centre. BUFFALO, NEW YORK – Mea Culpa. For years, as I recall, the head of media/public relations for Buffalo Tourism had been bugging me to come on down and check things out. I envisioned cool architecture and chicken wings and a nice Frank Lloyd Wright building Ihad heard about. I covered the Buffalo Bills off and on for the Star’s sports section in the early 2000’s, but I didn’t have a strong mental image of the city in ... continue reading →

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  JIM BYERS PHOTO Colaneri winery in Niagara-on-the-Lake looks like something out of Tuscany. Great wines, too. NIAGARA-ON-THE-LAKE – A wonderful B and B with a Florentine co-owner. An organic Italian gelato place run by the same woman and her husband. And a winery where they make their vino in the Italian style in a series of buildings that look like they were shipped from a sleepy hillside in Tuscany. Sure, you can go to this pretty southern Ontario town and indulge yourself in British (and faux British) hotels and plays and bars. There’s nothing wrong with that. But you also ... continue reading →

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  HONOLULU – Last week I talked about a golf beauty. Today it’s a golf beast. The Princeville Makai course on Kauai is a gorgeous setting; challenging but playable. Ko’olau Golf Club on Oahu is something much more treacherous. But just as beautiful. Where Princeville is located on a peninsula high above the Pacific on Kauai, Ko’olau is hard up against the jagged, ragged green mountains that spike up the centre of the island of Oahu. At one point the course had a slope rating of 163; one of the most difficult numbers of any course on the planet. It’s a tad ... continue reading →

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HONOLULU – I’ve always felt this is an underappreciated destination. I feel that way more strongly now. They’ve always had Waikiki Beach, one of the most glamorous and prettiest stretches of sand on the planet, with the extinct crater of Diamond Head looming to the east and watching over things. They’ve always had Pearl Harbor. But there’s so much more to this place. First of all, it’s a major city. It’s also the centre for Hawaiian business and, in some ways, Asia-Pacific business. So it punches above its weight with fascinating restaurants and museums and shopping and culture. Not to ... continue reading →

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Jim Byers photo The third hole at the Princeville Makai course on Kauai. Golfing magic. KAUAI, HAWAII – I have a new favourite golf course. I had a chance to play Princeville’s Makai course on the heavenly north shore of this Hawaiian island the other day. And fell in love. I’ve played some great resort courses in the Caribbean and around the U.S., and a few courses in the British Isles you wouldn’t call a resort course necessarily, but this one is probably the best. The sister course, called the Prince course, gets higher ratings from the golf geeks. It ... continue reading →

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