SoHo Cast Iron Historic District NYC

Meeting Manhattan: Behind the beautiful facades in SoHo

We covered a LOT of ground in our first day in New York City. We started in SoHo, then wandered through beautiful Washington Square Park before exploring the West Village. In the late afternoon, we walked through the Meatpacking District and made our way back uptown to Hell’s Kitchen via The High Line. After a brief siesta in the apartment, we headed back out that … Continue reading Meeting Manhattan: Behind the beautiful facades in SoHo

Brighton Bathing Boxes Melbourne

Brighton Bathing Boxes: Dendy Beach’s Rainbow Row

The rainbow row of Brighton Bathing Boxes is one of the most iconic sights in Melbourne. The brightly-coloured little beach houses are the calling card for Melbourne’s affluent bayside suburb of Brighton, and their likeness is plastered across postcards, prints and artwork all over the city. Our apartment came fully furnished, including a massive print of the Brighton Bathing Boxes hanging in my office. The … Continue reading Brighton Bathing Boxes: Dendy Beach’s Rainbow Row

Moat and Gold Dome of Invalides Paris

L’Hotel des Invalides: A Grand Tomb for the Little Emperor

A military museum is usually the last place you’d find me in any city, let alone in Paris. I was spending the morning with my Dad, whose passion for history is so infectious that he managed to make a place I’d usually skip interesting. My sister, Georgie, had just returned from her student exchange in Tours, a small town near the Loire Valley, so the … Continue reading L’Hotel des Invalides: A Grand Tomb for the Little Emperor

Hall of Mirrors at Versailles

Why visit Versailles? Exploring France’s last royal residence

Three million people visit the Chateau de Versailles every year. A successful visit will include an early start even in winter, patience in queues and battling the inevitable, year-round crowds. The zoo-like atmosphere inside the palace dampens the magic more than a little and it will take up one of your precious holiday days in Paris. So why bother with Versailles? Even if you’re not … Continue reading Why visit Versailles? Exploring France’s last royal residence

Archaeological crypt of Notre Dame: Roman ruins in Ile de Cite, Paris

With it’s grand boulevards, historic mansions and charming lack of skyscrapers, it can seem like Paris is stuck in the 19th century. The Archaeological Crypt of Notre Dame underneath Notre Dame Cathedral in Ile de City shows that it’s a city in a constant state of change. In the 1960s, during excavations for a car park outside Notre Dame, ancient Roman ruins were discovered 80 … Continue reading Archaeological crypt of Notre Dame: Roman ruins in Ile de Cite, Paris

Biting off more than we can chew in the Boboli Gardens

It had been a deliciously lazy day in Florence but by the late afternoon we felt that we should tick something else off our list. We were feeling fairly dusty, the aftermath of the night before which ended quite tellingly, at the most unlikely of places in such a foodie city – Florence’s golden arches. It was at the request of my friend, who works … Continue reading Biting off more than we can chew in the Boboli Gardens

The Glory of Opera Garnier, Paris

I’ve never seen anything quite like it. I thought the Palace of Versailles was grand, but Paris’ Opera Garnier blows it out of the water. Every inch is a tribute to opulence. Completed in 1875 by architect Charles Garnier, Opera Garnier is Europe’s largest opera houses. It is the setting for Gaston Leyroux’s Phantom of the Opera, which was inspired by the death of a construction … Continue reading The Glory of Opera Garnier, Paris