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(2022 - Winter Issue)


Hennessy, one of the world’s great luxury brands, invites you to its historic cellars in the Cognac region of Southwestern France. Experience first-hand the alchemy and craftsmanship that transforms this treasured liquid from grape to glass. The basic 25-euro tour includes a shuttle across the Charente River and a tasting of Hennessy V.S and V.S.O.P cognac. For the ultimate holiday gift consider the 200-euro visit. It’s a private tour that slips behind the scenes through the wrought-iron gates of the Founder’s Cellar, one of the estate’s oldest buildings, and home to Hennessy’s rarest eaux-de-vie. The bespoke private tour ends in a VIP lounge for a guided tasting of specially-selected cognacs, including Hennessy X.O and Paradis. Book online at least 48 hours in advance. hennessy.com

The Fort Myers area is recovering and rebuilding at a record pace after Category 4 storm Hurricane Ian hit Southwest Florida on Sept. 28. Sanibel Island Causeway has reopened, restoring access to residents and construction crews. Hotels have also reopened including the Marriott Sanibel Harbour in Fort Myers, the Westin Cape Coral Resort at Marina Village and the Hyatt Regency Coconut Point Resort and Spa in Bonita Springs. Seasonal events are back promising holiday cheer. As information changes rapidly, check with individual businesses. For details on accommodations and attractions currently open visit VisitFortMyers.com/open.

Why tramp around in the snow at home when you can be hiking in a New Zealand summer? The eight- to 14-day Ultimate South Island Adventure, offered until April by Active Adventures, promises an unforgettable journey. Explore Mount Cook National Park and Nelson Lakes National Park, walk through West Coast rainforests, go hiking atop Franz Josef Glacier, cycle the scenic Alps to Ocean Trail and cruise through Milford Sound to name a few highlights. End the day in some of the island’s most stunning settings while enjoying New Zealand’s legendary hospitality. By the way, trips fill up quickly. Activeadventures.com

London’s National Gallery is hosting a major exhibition celebrating Lucian Freud (1922–2011), one of Britain’s most well-known figurative painters and Sigmund Freud’s grandson. The more than 60 paintings, borrowed from museums and private collections around the world, trace the development of his style over 70 years from intimate studies of friends and family to paintings of powerful public figures including Queen Elizabeth II, large-scale canvasses and monumental nude portraits. Lucian Freud: New Perspectives runs until Jan. 22. nationalgallery.org.uk

Dorchester Collection hotels offer guests private guided walking tours following in the footsteps of legendary artists. This month at Hotel Eden in Rome, the luxury property has a fascinating trail called “Rebel and Rome,” which delves into the Italian artist Caravaggio’s rags-to-riches life and his dramatic paintings infused with light and shadow. Visit sites like former workshops where the world-renowned artist trained as well as the location that caused his exile from Rome. There will also be time to pause and enjoy the beauty of the Eternal City. Future walks include Rodin at Le Meurice in Paris and sculptor Barbara Hepworth at 45 Park Lane, London. dorchestercollection.com

Innovations made by international architects alongside global designers were recognized at the annual AZ awards which occurred this past summer. A jury of 10 world-renowned practitioners evaluated submissions from 43 countries. Canadian design projects fared particularly well among the 24 categories. Omar Gandhi Architect, deemed by many as “Toronto’s most wanted architect,” won for his design of OG House in Halifax, as well as the accessible promenade at Peggy’s Cove in Nova Scotia. The Bay Street Bridge, which connects a busy Toronto downtown corridor, has the futuristic lighting installation called Mycelium that was awarded. Another Toronto hub that garnered an AZ award is the under-construction Mirvish Village, which won in the “Urban Design Visions” category. awards.azuremagazine.com

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