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architecture

Most everyone who goes to Europe wants to see London and the Louvre. Not to mention Rome. But there are so many great places to go that aren’t quite as obvious. So here are five of my favourite cities and countries you should check out on your next European trip. VALENCIA A very under-rated city, I think. You’ll find a huge beach fronted by lovely cafés serving all kinds of great seafood, including paella; a favourite in this part of Spain. I love the beach, but I think the city centre is even nice. Here you’ll find one of architect ... continue reading →

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I wrote this blog for the Toronto Star last year after a nice visit to Buffalo. From what I hear, things have improved even more since I was last in town… 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 ... continue reading →

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LAS VEGAS – The busiest intersection in this city, Las Vegas Blvd. and E. Flamingo Rd., was marked not long ago by the parking garage at an old-school casino named Bill’s Gamblin’ Hall and Saloon. Today you’ll find one of The Strip’s sleekest celebrity restaurants, Giada, with giant windows looking out on the passing parade. Not only that, the restaurant is inside the sleek, new Cromwell Hotel, refashioned from the bones of Bills into a posh, boutique property. If there’s a symbol for how Vegas has changed, Giada and the Cromwell might be it. You’ll still find those maddening escalators ... continue reading →

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New Air Canada rouge routing provides direct, non-stop flights between Toronto and Honolulu, Hawaii’s biggest city and a surprisingly diverse destination. Honolulu’s Diamond Head has been a beacon for tourists for years. It sits at one end of famous Waikiki Beach, providing a perfect backdrop for millions of photos. The Royal Hawaiian Hotel has been charming visitors to Waikiki Beach in Honolulu for more than 100 years. They recently completed a fantastic renovation. You’ll find several cool swimming pools at the Royal Hawaiian Hotel, which is on perhaps the best stretch of Waikiki Beach. The hotel can be booked through ... continue reading →

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Great downtown Toronto location? Check. Sleek room design with a kitchen and laundry? Check. Chic lobby with a giant bank vault in the basement and a huge, grand hall upstairs? You got it. I had a chance to bed down at the historic 1 King West Hotel and Residences on the weekend and came away hugely impressed. I had a model suite and not all rooms look like mine just yet, but I’m told they’re being renovated and mine will be pretty typical. The suite I had on the 10th floor was quite large and comfortable; probably 425 square feet. ... continue reading →

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