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The Tate Modern and the battle for London’s soul

I recently found myself staring into a stranger’s living room, waiting for something beautiful to happen.  I was standing on the 10th-floor viewing terrace of the Tate Modern’s new wing, a twisting ziggurat of perforated brick and mortar that rises above the museum’s home in the old Bankside Power Station. The terrace allows for 360-degree views of the building frenzy that has...

Why Matsuhisa and De Niro open their Nobu hotels

Chef Nobu Matsuhisa and actor Robert De Niro have been partners since opening Nobu restaurant in New York in 1994. The name of the Japanese chef, whose signature cooking style borrows from his experiences working in Lima, Peru, and other coastal locales, is now affixed to more than 30 Nobu restaurants on five continents. In 2013, the partnership opened its first Nobu Hotel in Las Vegas and now runs...

Travel deals: Azores Airlines packages, London hotel savings of up to 35 percent

This week's best travel bargains around the globe.  Kimpton Aertson Hotel, which opened in Nashville in June, is offering up to 20 percent off rates. Rooms start at $240 -- down from $329 -- plus 15 percent tax and $2.50 fee. Price includes morning coffee or tea, evening social hour and bikes for touring. Book by Aug. 17; stay through Dec. 28. Info: 877-239-2269, aertsonhotel.com.  ...
Does this little amusement park really have the best wooden coaster in the world?

Does this little amusement park really have the best wooden coaster in the world?

Ride enthusiasts beat a path each summer to ride the world’s best wooden coaster in one of the most unlikely of places: a small amusement park located halfway between New York City and Boston that bills itself as the oldest continuously operating amusement park in the United States.  I made my pilgrimage this summer to Lake Compounce in Bristol, Conn., to ride Boulder Dash, ranked the top...
Travel Tips: resources for drinking well

Travel Tips: resources for drinking well

Travelers today face a wealth of good options when it comes to drinking wine and beer. “I think today you can be surprised most everywhere,” said Pascaline Lepeltier, beverage director at the restaurant Rouge Tomate in New York City.  But the variety can be overwhelming, especially when exploring a new place.   Here, beverage industry experts offer their advice on how to...
Champagne, duvets and a 180-degree seat: A frugal traveler's introduction to first class

Champagne, duvets and a 180-degree seat: A frugal traveler's introduction to first class

"First class can now board," the loudspeaker blared. I perked up. This was my moment. I pushed through the tight crowd that blocked my gate at Los Angeles International Airport.  Still, I hesitated as I approached the ticket counter. A voice behind me asked, "Are you in first class?" Another bellowed, "Are you going?"   "Yes," I said taking a...

A few recommendations for travelers to Silicon Valley

IF YOU GO: Silicon Valley  Where to stay:   Fairmont San Jose   170 S. Market St., San Jose   408-998-1900   fairmont.com/san-jose   With its rooftop pool and luxurious rooms, the Fairmont San Jose combines Northern California sophistication with a strategic downtown location. Rooms from $159.   Where to eat:   Adega  ...
Meet your new data-driven travel agent

Meet your new data-driven travel agent

Unlike big, impersonal online agencies, the best travel agents know a great deal about their clients and their travel choices. Now several new travel companies are creating data-driven, automated agents that rely on users’ personal preferences to make the travel-planning process easier.  Whether they use human knowledge or artificial intelligence (or both), these next-generation travel...
In Bristol, England, a restaurant goes back to rustic basics

In Bristol, England, a restaurant goes back to rustic basics

Some chefs serve commercial mayonnaise. For Peter Sanchez-Iglesias, the chef and an owner of Paco Tapas, and Dave Hazell, the head chef, making mayonnaise is a two-day process.  Crab shells are roasted and then infused in vegetable oil for 48 hours. The flavored oil is blended with ingredients like cider vinegar distilled from apples grown in nearby Somerset. The luscious, tangy result is indicative...
In Silicon Valley, dropping in at the GooglePlex, tech museums and the Jobs garage

In Silicon Valley, dropping in at the GooglePlex, tech museums and the Jobs garage

Like my college-age daughters, I am in love with my iPhone. And my ardor increased while I was researching a guidebook. With my cellphone, I narrated each hike into the Notes app, consulted Google Maps when I got lost and used the Camera app to capture scenery. As I worked, I wondered how we got from room-size mainframes to this portable computer in my hand.  So when Southwest Airlines started...
5 tech tips for unplugging on vacation

5 tech tips for unplugging on vacation

With summer travel kicking in high gear, we’re offering several tips on how to really disconnect from work electronically. After all, isn’t taking a minute to enjoy a breathtaking view or your child’s laughter more important than a corporate email? We think so.  Disable email. Actually, disable everything. Turn off your work email, and really hide it. For example, on an iPhone...

Complaints about airlines up sharply in May

Airlines continued to get an earful from disgruntled passengers in May, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation.  Customers filed 1,779 complaints about airline service, up 56.7 percent over May 2016, the Transportation Department said Friday. Airlines earned just two compliments — one fewer than in May last year.   The jump in complaints wasn’t as sharp as in...

Our favorite beach apps

Sure, you wish you could leave your phone at home when it’s time to soak up the rays on the beach, but why would you when these beach-going apps make your life so much easier? Surfline: A ton of surfing apps are available, but Surfline is one of the best because the organization has been delivering extensive weather and wave reports since 1985, and the app is useful even if you’re not...
Same difference: Photographs of 32 hotel rooms in 32 countries reveal few variations

Same difference: Photographs of 32 hotel rooms in 32 countries reveal few variations

In cities around the world, hotel rooms - with their carpets showing the fresh tracks of a housekeeping vacuum and their vents exhaling temperature-controlled air - await the arrival of strangers.  Still. Tidy. Blank.   Enter Swiss photographer Roger Eberhard, who spent a year documenting 32 Hilton hotel rooms in 32 countries. The result: a postcard, of sorts, in the form of "Standard...
In China's megacities, an unparalleled chance to observe and appreciate diversity

In China's megacities, an unparalleled chance to observe and appreciate diversity

As a Chinese friend of mine was helping me buy a plane ticket from Kunming to Chongqing, I read aloud from my guidebook: "... the [city] has little appeal. Overcrowded and fast-paced, the city is plagued by oppressive pollution, winter fogs and summer humidity. Nor is there much to illustrate Chongqing's history …"  Chinese megacities have horrible reputations, yet over the last...
At hotels, pajamas are becoming the new bathrobes

At hotels, pajamas are becoming the new bathrobes

Forget lounging around in your hotel room while donning a bathrobe, the standard in-room amenity at many midlevel and high-end properties. Some hotels want their guests to have pajama parties instead. They’re selling and giving away pajamas to guests and turning to popular sleepwear brands to design fashionable pairs.  Claridge’s, in London, recently introduced women’s silk...
For Croatia trips, appealing prices for packages and flights

For Croatia trips, appealing prices for packages and flights

Croatia is a popular vacation destination this year for travelers from the United States. Expedia has seen air ticket demand to the country double this summer, compared with last summer, and on the travel search engine Kayak, searches to Croatia between Jan. 1 and May 25 this year for travel from May 26 to Sept. 5 were up 25 percent, compared with the same periods last year.  A holiday to Croatia...
Minnesota women have no regrets following through on wilderness venture

Minnesota women have no regrets following through on wilderness venture

MINNEAPOLIS — They went, they returned … and it was better than they had hoped.  So say six Twin Cities women about a journey they took recently into the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness.   For some of the women the expedition was a “bucket list” adventure — something they always wanted to do. For others the excursion was a welcome nudge that pushed...
Tips for buying and setting up a tent: It’s easier than you think

Tips for buying and setting up a tent: It’s easier than you think

My wife and I received a tent as a wedding present in 1999, so until last year I’d never purchased one. I suddenly needed something smaller than our family-sized tent for a trip into the Hemingway-Boulders Wilderness.  Like many people these days, I spent a couple weeks researching tents on the web. I looked at a few in stores but never talked to an expert. I eventually decided on a Big...

Hackers have been stealing credit card numbers from Trump's hotels for months

Guests at 14 Trump properties, including hotels in Washington, New York and Vancouver, have had their credit card information exposed, marking the third time in as many years that a months-long security breach has affected customers of the chain of luxury hotels.  The latest instance occurred between August 2016 and March 2017, according to a notice on the company's website, and included guest...
How to explore the wide open spaces of Moab, Utah

How to explore the wide open spaces of Moab, Utah

A metal monster roars, grabs a huge chunk of sandstone, nearly tips over and performs the seemingly impossible, climbing out of a massive crevasse and ascending a giant slab of rock.  It’s Jeep Week in Moab, Utah, and plumes of dust mark the horizon as hundreds of tough-as-steel four-wheelers and their drivers scramble over red rock.   To witness this marriage of man and machine...
Hotels train workers in the personal touch

Hotels train workers in the personal touch

Technology, some hotels are finding, has its limits.  “Technology cannot hug a repeat guest,” said George Aquino, vice president and managing director of AHC+Hospitality, formerly Amway Hotel Corp., based in Grand Rapids, Michigan.   That is the reason his company, which manages several hotels, has been running a training program for some of its managers and other staff...
With flex-schedule program, United can resell passengers' seats

With flex-schedule program, United can resell passengers' seats

This week, United Airlines is quietly unveiling a new technology platform that it will use to manage the problem of oversold flights-and, in the same breath, turn them into a profit opportunity.  With the help of its new Flex-Schedule Program, the airline is piloting a way to buck the trend of involuntary bumping-the term for kicking passengers off oversold flights-without necessarily offering...

Talk travel: What to see in Austin, Texas and other travel questions answered

The Washington Post's travel writers and editors recently discussed stories, questions, gripes and more. Here are edited excerpts:  Q: I will be going to Austin, Texas, later this week for a convention, so the bulk of my time will be spent in hotel conference rooms, but I have tacked on generous half-days before and after. Do you have any suggestions on things to see and do? The bat bridge is...

Feel lousy after a long flight? Here's why and what you can do about it

Are you imagining that “hit in the head with a baseball bat” feeling after a flight? If you are, so are thousands of others.  Here’s the best thing you can do: Have a drink. Actually, have several.   We speak here, alas, not of the finest single-malt Scotch but of water.   I became acutely aware of this on a recent five-day, seven-flight sojourn that took...
A Sonoma restaurant that’s pricey but not pretentious

A Sonoma restaurant that’s pricey but not pretentious

When a restaurant is as expensive and has as much hype surrounding it as SingleThread, in the charming Sonoma County town of Healdsburg, California, expectations are high. The head chef, Kyle Connaughton, who is best known for heading the experimental kitchen at the Fat Duck in Britain, and his wife, Katina, who is a farmer and a horticulturist, opened the Californian-and-Japanese-inspired restaurant...
A church where angels and Darth Vader mingle

A church where angels and Darth Vader mingle

Washington National Cathedral stands tall in the nation's capital. It is the city's fourth-tallest building and its highest point, rising 676 feet above sea level atop Mount Saint Alban in Northwest. Its three large towers can be seen for miles.  A cathedral is the main church in an area headed by an official called a bishop. Washington National Cathedral, officially named the Cathedral Church...
Late to the craft beer scene, Milwaukee’s small brewers are a big hit

Late to the craft beer scene, Milwaukee’s small brewers are a big hit

MILWAUKEE — It took only a couple of hours to hear the inevitable. “What do you have that tastes like Miller Lite?” In a city made famous by pale and mostly bland beer, I was surprised it took so long. The question arrived early on a Saturday evening at Good City Brewing, which opened less than a year ago near Milwaukee’s handsome, weathered downtown. During a wave of brewery...
Canada’s Banff may be beautiful, but Jasper is bigger – and better

Canada’s Banff may be beautiful, but Jasper is bigger – and better

JASPER, Alberta — About 25 years ago, when my hair was much darker and my wife’s hair color had achieved a perfection that will never change, we took a trip to Banff National Park. We stayed for several days and liked it, of course. It being our first time in Alberta, we drove up to Lake Louise, about an hour north, had lunch at the famed Chateau Lake Louise, did a short hike along the...

Avocado toast to fried clams: The best food from a cross-country road trip

Our favorite places on our cross-country trip:  Restaurant Eiji   317 Sanchez St., 415-558-8149   The sushi is fresh daily and always changing, and there's a great sake menu, but the real draw in this low-key jewel box is the house-made tofu. It's more like a creamy custard and comes with toppings such as sesame seeds, seaweed and scallions.   Tartine Bakery & Cafe ...
A road trip with a question: Is regional American food alive and well?

A road trip with a question: Is regional American food alive and well?

"Where y'all from?" It was a question we heard frequently on our cross-country journey. This time, the person asking was Crystal, our waitress at Bea's, a family-run fried chicken restaurant on the outskirts of Chattanooga, Tennessee.  I paused. "Well," I answered. "It's a good question. We've been spending time on the West Coast this winter with family, and now we're...
Time, immigrants made Montreal cuisine a delicious melting pot

Time, immigrants made Montreal cuisine a delicious melting pot

MONTREAL — Ola Claesson sat comfortably for a chat off to the side of the busy main dining room at Auberge Saint-Gabriel. The inn — now just a restaurant — is 329 years old. Claesson is much younger. The conversation took an inevitable turn toward the supernatural. “There are stories about ghosts,” said Claesson, the latest chef at an establishment established before...
From bar to barber shop: Visit Hemingway haunts in Northern Michigan

From bar to barber shop: Visit Hemingway haunts in Northern Michigan

PETOSKEY, Mich. — “You can’t get away from yourself by moving from one place to another,” wrote Ernest Hemingway in “The Sun Also Rises.” For much of his early years, the novelist didn’t move much beyond Oak Park, where he was born, and Northern Michigan, where his family had a vacation cottage. Far from getting away from himself, his experiences there figure...
With water coasters, thrills meet splashes

With water coasters, thrills meet splashes

I love roller coasters for many reasons: the wind in my face, the thrilling plunges downhill and back up, the sharp turns, that feeling of weightlessness and the tingle in my stomach as I dive. But during a season that can feel like one long heat wave, one thing would make riding a coaster even better: a nice big splash.   The only problem is that usually you have to choose. You can take...
A newcomer to Stockholm dining is a vegetarian mecca

A newcomer to Stockholm dining is a vegetarian mecca

There are chefs who can fill seats based on reputation alone — lead actors whose legion admirers eagerly attend every opening. In Stockholm, that describes Mathias Dahlgren, a founder of the New Nordic Food Manifesto and a Bocuse d’Or winner who has earned a cumulative four Michelin stars at three restaurants to date.  His new restaurant, Rutabaga, which opened in February, has garnered...
Family travel: 5 mountain towns to consider

Family travel: 5 mountain towns to consider

Mountain towns in summer offer fresh air for hiking and fishing, music under the stars, great dining and active pursuits for all ages.  Here are five to consider:   1. Whitefish, Mont. Wild and scenic rivers, clear mountain lakes, and an endless supply of hiking and biking trails. You’ll find that and more in this charming ski town nestled next to Glacier National Park. Check...

A grown-up’s guide to Walt Disney World

Summer in Walt Disney World is not just for children, as scores of baby boomers roaming the parks in mouse ears can attest.  You can bar hop among theme hotels, like the Tambu Lounge at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort or the Victoria Falls Lounge at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge. You can dance to hits from the ‘80s through today at the adults-only Atlantic Dance Hall on Disney&rsquo...

Hitting the road? Take along these apps to spice up your summer trip

It’s July, which means it’s time to hit the road.  Which means it’s time to hit the apps that make hitting the road easier, and more of an adventure.   Today’s road warrior has an arsenal of tech tools at his or her disposal, a plethora of personal technologies. They range from the cutting-edge mobile app that takes you to local chefs’ hangouts, to a device...
Tours offering new reasons to linger in Milan

Tours offering new reasons to linger in Milan

Milan is known as Italy’s fashion and business capital, but as a leisure destination like Florence, Rome and Venice? Not so much — at least according to Maurizio Naro, the president of the Provincial Hotel Association of Milan. He said Milan “is typically thought of as a place for business, not vacation, and international tourists tended to not include a visit to the city as part...
Folk art market endures amid shifting US immigration policy

Folk art market endures amid shifting US immigration policy

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Organizers of the International Folk Art Market in Santa Fe say shifting U.S. policies on security and immigration have not hampered participation by artists from 53 countries, from Cuba to Jordan.  In its 14th year, the annual bazaar is expanding its mission to highlight innovation and high-fashion within folk art traditions, from flower-petal dyed scarves from India...
Charleston, West Virginia, is an escape from big city prices, crowds

Charleston, West Virginia, is an escape from big city prices, crowds

CHARLESTON, W.Va. - A city that has time for you is a win.  In Charleston, West Virginia, you can park your car all day for $3, catch free live music almost every night and be seated right away - sans reservations - at the city's best restaurant.   Servers and shopkeepers have the time to exceed expectations, often in delightful ways: The owner of Swiftwater Cafe designed me a custom...
Airlines try biometric identification for boarding and bags

Airlines try biometric identification for boarding and bags

Two U.S. air carriers, Delta Air Lines and JetBlue, recently began passenger trials in biometric identification, a technology that verifies a person’s identity through fingerprints, facial features or other physical characteristics.  In early June, JetBlue, teaming with U.S. Customs and Border Protection, introduced optional self-boarding on flights from Logan International Airport in Boston...
Profile of an American road trip: Where we go, what we eat, what we spend

Profile of an American road trip: Where we go, what we eat, what we spend

Nearly 75 percent of Americans will take a road trip this year, and California is considered the preferred destination. Alaska and Florida finished second and third, respectively.  Those are among the findings of the 2017 Road Trip Survey of more than 1,300 U.S. drivers. For the purposes of the study, a road trip was considered to be any vehicle-based vacation of at least 200 miles.  ...
CDC recommendations: Learn more about Zika before traveling

CDC recommendations: Learn more about Zika before traveling

The Zika infection in pregnant women can cause severe birth defects in their babies. So the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that all pregnant women avoid traveling to areas where there is an outbreak of Zika virus.  “The current recommendation is men should not get a woman pregnant for six months, after the man has traveled to a Zika area, and women should...
Sacred art, reunited with its religious

Sacred art, reunited with its religious

FLORENCE, Italy - Ever since patrician Englishmen made Florence a stop on the Grand Tour in the 17th century, the city, a Renaissance crucible of painting and sculpture, has been a destination for art worshipers.  And while some of the great milestones in art history remain in situ - to see Masaccio's groundbreaking experiment in perspective with the "Holy Trinity" fresco, you go to...

With record numbers at security checkpoints, TSA offers tips to avoid hassles

No knives. Bag the liquids. Stow the peanut butter in checked baggage or chuck it.  That's the word from the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), which is reminding passengers about what to do to avoid delays. With more travelers than ever moving through airport security, TSA officials are offering some basic tips to spare travelers headaches.   On Friday, the TSA announced...

The right way to pack for travel

Checked baggage fees, tight airline bins and long waits at the luggage carousel are just a few reasons it pays to pack light. If your flight is canceled or delayed, having your bag in hand can be the difference between getting on with your travels or being stuck at the airport. And who hasn’t brought multiple outfits and three extra pairs of shoes along only to spend most of your vacation in...

Did your great fare suddenly disappear? Blame 'dynamic pricing'

You probably know what Melanie Frazier felt like when she recently tried to book a flight from Portland, Maine, to Atlanta.  She found a $257 fare - not a bad deal - but by the time she got around to booking the ticket online a few hours later, the price had risen to $441. Undeterred, she set up a fare alert through Google, and a week later, sure enough, the fare plunged to $246.  ...

Travel dilemmas: Can you protect electronics in your checked bag?

It had already been a long trip, and I was only two days into it. But the laptop and camera in my backpack seemed to get heavier with each dash through the airport.  Why not just dump them into my checked bag, my version of the electronics ban in effect for travelers coming to the U.S. from 10 airports in the Middle East and North Africa?   Never mind e-separation anxiety. Conventional...
Why Judd Apatow loves Montreal (you’ll laugh)

Why Judd Apatow loves Montreal (you’ll laugh)

Montreal, which is celebrating its 375th birthday this year, is known for history, food, architecture and the hometown performance group Cirque du Soleil. But for filmmaker Judd Apatow, whose credits include “The 40-Year-Old Virgin” and “Bridesmaids,” the Canadian city is synonymous with comedy. He has planned a trip there this month to appear at the annual Just for Laughs...

Travel deals: Save $250 on 2018 tours to China, plus a sale on flights to Canada

This week's best travel bargains around the globe.  Land   - Book five nights and receive two free nights at Malliouhana, an Auberge Resort, on the Caribbean island of Anguilla. A seven-night stay in a garden-view deluxe room starts at $2,712, including taxes and service charges - a savings of $1,050. Rate also includes rentals for snorkeling, kayaking and stand-up paddleboarding, plus...
Changes afoot for travel to Cuba

Changes afoot for travel to Cuba

Going to Cuba when I did (late last year) and freely walking its streets, meeting its residents and hearing their stories already felt like a privilege. Now, even more so.  Since I explored the island’s off-the-beaten-path cities and wrote about it, circumstances have changed — at least in terms of the U.S. government’s attitude toward travel there.   President Donald...
Family travel: Five trails to the great outdoors

Family travel: Five trails to the great outdoors

Take to the trails with your family. Here are five ways to enjoy the great outdoors.  1. Avalanche Lake Trail, Glacier National Park, West Glacier, Mont.   Expect stunning scenery from start to finish when you head out on the Avalanche Lake Trail. Plan a half-day in which to enjoy the 4.6-mile trek through a scenic gorge, along a bubbling stream and through an inland Pacific rain forest...
Six ways hotels are targeting the millennial market (and benefiting us all)

Six ways hotels are targeting the millennial market (and benefiting us all)

Hotels, they are a'changin', as hoteliers develop properties that cater to the younger, tech-savvy generations.  New and older brands are making moves to do away with the beige, interact via apps, double as co-working and social spaces, and score shareable selfie love along the way. But don't call them "millennial hotels." While many of the perks and amenities are inspired by research...
Will Cuba’s wave of tourism lift the Caribbean region?

Will Cuba’s wave of tourism lift the Caribbean region?

You might think other Caribbean tourism destinations would be ready to flip their sandals as Cuba’s tourism numbers continue to climb. International visitors to Cuba last year rose by 13.9 percent to a record of just over 4 million, second only to the Dominican Republic (5.96 million). Meanwhile, international tourist arrivals in the Caribbean region as a whole increased 4.2 percent in 2016...
King Arthur slept here (maybe)

King Arthur slept here (maybe)

Go ahead, say their names: Avalon and Tintagel. Believe deeply enough, and they might emerge from the mouth as through an enchantment-induced vapor, as though borne on the breath of a dragon. (Especially after at least four people have corrected your pronunciation of Tintagel: Be gentle with that “g,” it’s tin-TAJ-l.) And, indeed, these two sites in the southwest of England are epic...
Can an American tourist in London keep calm and carry on after recent terrorist attacks?

Can an American tourist in London keep calm and carry on after recent terrorist attacks?

"Are you nervous?" a security guard asked me.  I was in London and the gentleman in the fluorescent safety vest had just inspected my bag and wanded my body from shoulders to ankles, front and back.   "Should I be nervous?" I responded.   Anyone beyond the picture frame might assume that we were discussing the current climate in London. I had arrived in...

Talk travel: A theory about canceled flights and other travel questions answered

The Washington Post's travel writers and editors recently discussed stories, questions, gripes and more. Here are edited excerpts:  Q: Do think issues with cancelled tickets/flights has to do with airlines trying to reorganize their flights so they aren't overbooked anymore? I have to wonder if the airlines are trying to protect their reputations after all the ruckus these past few months. Is...
Days with the manta rays: Where to learn to free dive

Days with the manta rays: Where to learn to free dive

A growing number of travelers want to master free diving, the practice of diving on a single breath, to explore the underwater world.  Resorts around the world are offering guests a chance to get beneath the surface without bulky scuba equipment through on-property certification courses and guided dives year-round. The increase in demand has also prompted the Professional Association of Diving...
First look at Royal Caribbean Symphony interior construction

First look at Royal Caribbean Symphony interior construction

Royal Caribbean Symphony of the Seas recently moved into the final phase of its construction when it was floated out into the water at the STX France shipyard. It floats, and now the cruise line is focused on the interior construction to get what will become the world’s largest cruise ship ready for its 2018 debut. “Well if you take a look at Symphony of the Seas in the yard, she looks...
Kimpton, a boutique hotel pioneer, sets its sights on Europe

Kimpton, a boutique hotel pioneer, sets its sights on Europe

For Mike DeFrino, the chief executive of Kimpton Hotels and Restaurants, opening a boutique hotel is a very careful process. “For each location, we think about how much people are willing to pay to whether there will be a need for parking,” he said. “We want properties that are embraced locally.”  Bill Kimpton, an investment banker-turned-hotelier, founded Kimpton Hotels...
Stars over Blachford Lake: Off the grid in the Northwest Territories

Stars over Blachford Lake: Off the grid in the Northwest Territories

YELLOWKNIFE, Canada — If for some unlikely reason you lose your way in Canada’s Northwest Territories and happen to stumble upon Blachford Lake Lodge, a 30-minute flight southeast of Yellowknife, “five-star luxury” won’t be your first reaction. Yet that’s how visitors who’ve drunk the Kool-Aid invariably describe this deliciously inviting hilltop oasis. &ldquo...
How I rebooted my beauty regimen in South Korea

How I rebooted my beauty regimen in South Korea

Checking in for a facial at the flagship store of the South Korean beauty brand Sulwahsoo, I am surprised to see that the intake form asks if I'm claustrophobic. I mentally note that I've never seen that particular question from a spa before, check "no" and then move on to more expected pre-facial questions, such as what kind of skin-care routine I use at home.  I'm not easily intimidated...
More than a port, San Juan offers vibrant dining, sightseeing

More than a port, San Juan offers vibrant dining, sightseeing

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico — On a sultry May evening, I set off on a walking tour of this city’s La Calle Loiza neighborhood. Once a seedy area that few ventured into, it is rapidly blossoming into a Caribbean cousin of Miami’s Wynwood Arts District, where colorful murals decorate the facades of once dingy industrial buildings. Tucked in between the tourist meccas of Isla Verde and Condado...
Travel Tips: Explore Southern Africa by safari

Travel Tips: Explore Southern Africa by safari

An African safari is a trip that should be on every traveler’s bucket list, according to Melissa Biggs Bradley, founder of the luxury travel company Indagare and a 15-time safari veteran.  “A safari taps into the primitive ways of humankind because you’re living in the wild and tracking animals the way hunters and gatherers once did,” she said. “It’s a transformative...

Bill that makes it unlawful to remove passengers from planes isn't strong enough

Here we go again.  Congress is trying to pass yet another Federal Aviation Administration reauthorization bill, a rare opportunity to help airline passengers by enacting meaningful consumer protections. It's fast-moving legislation that may be all but decided by the time you read this. But the drafts of both the House and Senate bills offer a flight plan for air travelers during the next six...
From Florida's Panhandle to Key West: The craft-distillery trail

From Florida's Panhandle to Key West: The craft-distillery trail

If not for the small sign and festively attired crowd out front, I'd worry that I've goofed up the address and wound up at a welding shop or plumbing supply depot.  We're welcomed inside by an amiable guy with a salt-and-pepper beard who introduces himself as Troy Roberts, Drum Circle Distilling's founder and head distiller. I soon realize that I'm hardly the first visitor to have such thoughts...
A stylish retreat in the heart of Prague

A stylish retreat in the heart of Prague

Check In  Hotel Boho, Senovazna 4, 420-234-622-600, hotelbohoprague.com   Rates   From 150 euros, about $170.   The Basics   A relatively recent arrival among Prague’s handful of high-end design hotels, Boho Hotel is a tasteful standout. The 57-room property, which opened in late 2015, offers timeless modern design inside an early 20th-century building...

How to ensure your vehicle is ready for a road trip

Nearly 75 percent of Americans plan to take a road trip at some point this year, with many of those travelers hitting the highway this summer. No matter the destination or the route you take to get there, a successful trip is contingent on having a dependable vehicle. With some help from a leading auto expert, we’ve singled out a few simple ways to ensure your car, truck or SUV is up to snuff...
Your credit card may provide travel insurance you didn’t know you had

Your credit card may provide travel insurance you didn’t know you had

I get this question all the time: “Do I need to buy travel insurance?” It’s not easy to answer, but one thing I always say: you may already have it and don’t know it. Your credit card may already provide it. If your son breaks his leg in a soccer match days before a family cruise vacation, if you forgot your phone on the plane, if your flight was delayed or canceled, or your...
A new camper reports back

A new camper reports back

The word “charger” kept flashing in my mind like a red emergency light. The campsite had no electrical hook-up so I didn’t need it, I kept telling myself.  I paced anxiously through my bedroom at home, looking to make sure I didn’t forget anything vital for our first camping adventure.   Also, I had promised my 7-year-old daughter I would stay away from Facebook...

North Korea tour options dwindle for Americans. But not by much.

When Otto Warmbier died on June 19 after a long detention in North Korea, Young Pioneer Tours, the company that arranged his trip there, announced it would no longer sell such excursions to U.S. citizens. But it hardly spelled the end of U.S. tourism in North Korea.  U.S. citizens undaunted by travel to a region hostile to them still have plenty of other options: At least four other companies...
Visiting Argentina gets less expensive

Visiting Argentina gets less expensive

Argentina, land of the tango, gauchos and good wine, is also emerging as the land of the good deal.  Foreign visitors who pay for their lodging with an international debit or credit card — not cash — now receive a direct and automatic refund of the country’s 21 percent value-added tax. The reimbursement applies to all accommodations, from hostels and midrange hotels to luxury...
Tricky politics means huge business for Russia's travel market

Tricky politics means huge business for Russia's travel market

Greg Tepper typically sends 1,500 travelers to Russia every year. Since he founded his company Exeter International in 1992, he's been one of the foremost leaders in the United States of luxury travel to Russia. And this has been his best year in a very long time-maybe ever.  "I haven't seen demand for Russia like this since 1989, which may have been the greatest time ever for Americans...

Dark side of the sun: The US gets a rare total-eclipse crossing

Michelle Nichols speaks with such passion and poetry about the moon passing in front of the sun that she can inspire someone with even the smallest sliver of astronomical knowledge (such as this travel writer) to begin planning a trip to see the total solar eclipse on Aug. 21.  "It looks like a hole in the sky. In the middle of the day, the sky goes dark and you can see stars and planets...
Tourism in Newark? 50 years after riots, city says it's time

Tourism in Newark? 50 years after riots, city says it's time

NEWARK, N.J. (AP) — Tourism in Newark? You might not think of it as a destination, but boosters say Newark is ready for visitors as part of a comeback.  A company called Have You Met Newark? has taken more than 2,000 visitors on walking tours and bar crawls. Tour company founder Emily Manz points out everything from Nasto's ice cream parlor, made famous in an episode of "The Sopranos...
An untamed island meets its match

An untamed island meets its match

As I stood on the splintered boat dock with John Anderson looking south across Mississippi Sound to Horn Island, his lion’s mane of hair blew straight back, as if we were already bumping across the water, underway for the island. But the Gulf of Mexico was especially choppy, and the boat I hired was heeding small-craft warnings. Horn lay eight miles offshore, a hyphen on the horizon’s...
Surviving the summer travel season

Surviving the summer travel season

It’s shaping up to be a record-breaking year for summer travel.  Airlines for America, an industry trade group, is expecting about 234 million passengers to travel worldwide on U.S. airlines between June and the end of August, the highest number ever, and up 4 percent over last summer. Indeed, Dallas Fort Worth International, one of the nation’s busiest airports, is predicting that...
10 awesome places in the world you can see for free

10 awesome places in the world you can see for free

You can pay a fortune to travel around the world. Or you can pay nothing at all. Here are 10 places you’ll never regret visiting that won’t cost you a dime.  THE BRITISH MUSEUM, LONDON   Even if you’re not big on museums, you need to go here to see the Egyptian mummies, the ancient Greek marbles and so many other treasures the Brits plundered from the around the world...

Save on European river cruises, tours of Cuba and more of the best travel deals

This week's best travel bargains around the globe.  Land   - Save 10 percent on Intrepid Travel's Hola Cuba people-to-people tour. The nine-day trip starts at $3,069 per person double and includes guesthouse accommodations; 22 meals; private transport; activities, such as a waterfall walk in Trinidad and a visit to the Che Guevara Mausoleum and Museum in Santa Clara; and taxes. Book...
Explore one of the most remote regions -- Washington's Olympic National Park

Explore one of the most remote regions -- Washington's Olympic National Park

As I sit gazing at a million stars against a pitch-black sky at the edge of a thousand-year-old forest, listening to the pounding waves of the North Pacific, a remarkable feeling of insignificance washes over me. Huddled under a heavy blanket against a howling wind on this cold April night, I experience a feeling of powerlessness that is strangely comforting.  The same thought occurred to me...

Talk travel: Getting to Cuba quickly and other travel questions answered

The Washington Post's travel writers and editors recently discussed stories, questions, gripes and more. Here are edited excerpts:  Q: Do you have any recommendations to squeeze in travel to Cuba in the next 90 days? Preferable an all inclusive; cruise with stops in at least one Cuban port or travel group package.   A: Check out International Expeditions, which arranges cruises and...
Good food in economy? Six airlines are making it happen

Good food in economy? Six airlines are making it happen

Is it really possible for economy passengers on long-haul flights to look forward to the in-flight food? Now, on some airlines, that answer may be a “yes.” While back-of-the-plane cuisine doesn’t exactly have a reputation for being appetizing, and amenities for economy flyers are increasingly few and far between, several carriers are taking the opposite approach by elevating their...
Where the Ping-Pong scene never sleeps

Where the Ping-Pong scene never sleeps

Most major cities have some sort of niche Ping-Pong scene, typically in a clean-cut setting akin to an athletic club. But Portland, Oregon, is a city that takes its leisure seriously. Case in point: Pips & Bounce, a bar in southeast Portland that places at least as much emphasis on nets and paddles as it does on gin and vermouth.  “There are a lot of bars with Ping-Pong,” said Mike...
Ritz-Carlton isn’t all about hotels anymore. Now it’s launching a cruise line

Ritz-Carlton isn’t all about hotels anymore. Now it’s launching a cruise line

Who says hotel companies can’t dabble in cruising, too? In a hospitality industry crossover, the Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company is launching a luxury cruising yacht line scheduled to hit the water in the fourth quarter of 2019, the company has announced. Ritz-Carlton will enter a crowded field of luxury cruise lines. In doing so, it follows a path similar to Disney when it founded Disney Cruise...

‘Late outdoors bloomer’ turns her travels, recreation into a business

BOISE, Idaho — Kristen Bor left college with bachelor’s and master’s degrees and a fellowship on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C.  Many would envy the path she was on. Bor wanted something different.   So she quit her job and set out to travel and start an outdoors blog. Three years later, she is living in a customized Mercedes Sprinter van based in Salt Lake City...