Rediscovering Miami: Street art, glass gardens, luxury condos and more

Home to internationally acclaimed #artbasel, Miami has become an art-centric city, with galleries, outdoor exhibits, exotic tropical gardens and skylines rising to the occasion. Returning to Miami two years after moving away, I’ve rediscovered this vibrant city in a new way.  No longer consumed by the daily grind, I have ventured beyond my customary boundaries to experience the “magic city” as a tourist. Serving as home to one of three internationally acclaimed Art Basel shows,…

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Arrival in Abu Dhabi

It is Friday, “family day, in Abu Dhabi, and we park along the corniche, a popular common denominator of these Gulf port cities. There is a strange, wooden structure, which looks as though someone piled together a bunch of two-by-fours to build, in the center of the plaza by the newly built “public” beach. A vendor is renting motorized mini cars and scooters, and children are scurrying after their parents to sample a few turns…

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Aloft…Almost perfect!

With many hotel options to choose from, I decided to book the Aloft Abu Dhabi, in part because I had read good things about this new concept brand by Starwood, but primarily because of its free internet access.  My expectations were exceeded, with super-comfy beds with high-grade Egyptian cotton linens; ultra-modern yet functional furnishings and bathroom fittings; extra feather pillows; soothing colors and perfectly opaque black-out blinds that let you sleep in! The bonus:  FREE…

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Duplicity in Doha

Marshall is there to meet me, on the other side of the arrivals hall in Doha. Immediately upon deplaning, I notice the cultural changes and duplicitous manner of life in this oil-rich kingdom. Three young women in black burqas embellished with beaded sequin trim around the cuffs, carrying Gucci and Prada handbags, wearing Manolo Blahnik platforms, alternately glance at their Blackberries while chattering in Arabic, as we ride the bus from the plane to the…

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LHR Terminal 5: glass skyways, cappuccino & movie stars

I can hardly contain my excitement about my experience in British Airway’s new terminal at London Heathrow. Flying in at 6 am, I feel on the verge of a new adventure, a new chapter ahead with the promise of international intrigue and glamour. A clear, crisp morning reveals the sprawling metropolis along the Thames. I clearly make out the city center with its modern skyscrapers, and look in vain for Big Ben and the London…

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