THE IN-TRAY

The top five holiday destinations and what to pack

IF YOU’RE DIPPING A TOE INTO THE NORTHERN HEMISPHERE SUMMER, CHECK OUT OUR TRAVEL TIPS, HOTEL IDEAS AND BEAUTY NOTES TAILORED FOR FIVE BREATHTAKING DESTINATIONS.

Every year, as bone-chilling weather arrives in the southern hemisphere, you can also almost hear the mad scramble of sun-seekers scuttling to international airports around the country. Whatever your destination, you’ll need to curate your beauty kit accordingly. Our travel guide comes with places to stay, where to play, and how to slay—with your look.

LONDON

Stay: Taking shape in the former BBC Headquarters, London: White City House is certainly making the news. It’s part of the Soho House private members’ club empire, but its 45 handsome suites are open to non-members. Behold snappy public spaces, a tempting rooftop pool and a sprawling fitness club. West London, its location, is also one of the city’s buzziest new hoods.

Play: Revel in this warm London summer with outdoor events. In August, take in the Caribbean-themed Notting Hill Carnival, open-air viewings in iconic locations such as Hampton Court Palace, and the daisy chain of music festivals; Reading Festival unfolds August 24-26. Picasso 1932: Love, Fame, Tragedy is the first solo exhibition Tate Modern has ever mounted on the Spanish virtuoso. Or tour Buckingham Palace during its opening.

Slay: London requires an avant-garde approach: glittery shadow, saturated lipstick, or exaggerated liner a la Amy Winehouse. At his fashion show in February, Erdem’s models resembled latter-day flappers with finger-waves, reflective eyes and statement lips. It’s a look that works at both an outdoor festival or on the dancefloor of Fabric.

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Corfu

Stay: For many travellers, Greece is still the word. But if you’ve already ticked off Mykonos and Santorini, it’s time to consider Corfu. The Ionian idyll is a haven of Venetian architecture, pristine forests and lavish resorts. MarBella Nido Corfu arrived earlier this year, with 70 stylish rooms, a private beach and breathtaking views from every angle.

Play: Amble through Kerkyra’s old quarter, with its pastel-coloured architecture, stop by Byzantine museums, or go hiking to discover pebbly beaches and sandstone cliffs. In Corfu Town, shop for handmade leather sandals, wood-fired pottery and gold bangles.

Slay: How to take on the guise of a mighty Aphrodite? Few things look better juxtaposed against azure waters and pale sands than coral-hued lips, bronzed cheeks, and shimmering skin. Unleash the goddess within.

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LOS ANGELES

Stay: Far more than a mere stopover, LA has evolved into a cultural, shopping and gastronomic goliathan to rival New York. The most dynamic part of the West Coast city is its downtown precinct, which is undergoing a stunning metamorphosis from gritty to pretty. Take in the scene at Hotel Figuero, which was recently restored to its 1926 Spanish Colonial glory. We’re particularly fond of the blue fig-leaf wallpaper brightening some of the bathrooms.

Play: Book tickets online for The Broad, the temple to contemporary art from philanthropist Eli Broad. Breeze through Grand Central Market for dazzling food options, including breakfast rolls from Eggslut, grass-fed burgers from Belcampo Meat Co, and coffee from G&B. Saunter along East 3rd Street, which is dotted with stores, galleries and cafés brimming with artsy locals. Head to the The Ace rooftop, a hipster magnet, for twilight drinks and vistas over Broadway.

Slay: Unlike staying in glossy Beverly Hills or West Hollywood, downtown LA calls for a more pared-back look. Start with a yoga, Pilates or barre class, or perhaps an infrared sauna at HotBox, and follow with a green juice from Juice Crafters. In terms of your look, focus on luminous skin, healthy lashes and neutral lips.

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FLORENCE

Stay: Perched between the Uffizi Gallery and the Duomo, Hotel Savoy is perfectly positioned to explore the Tuscan capital. After a six-month closure, the hotel recently reopened with newly polished suites (think parquet floors, marble and mosaics), and a lobby decorated by Emilio Pucci Design, using the fashion brand’s trademark scarf colours.

Play: Immerse yourself in the Renaissance splendour of the city. Lines form early to view Michelangelo’s David at Galleria dell’Accademia, or view breathtaking works by Raphael, Titian and Rubens at the Pitti Palace. Survey the bustling food vendors inside the nineteenth-century Mercato Centrale, or sample iced treats from the city’s countless gelaterie.

Slay: Italian women are fastidiously groomed, so break out a few dolce vita moves. Full arches, voluminous lashes and blood-red lips echo Florentine style. Or explore a more experimental mode that reflects the Tuscan capital’s fashion bona fides. Matte lips, gleaming eyes and Botticelli-inspired tresses are all fantastico.

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PARIS

Stay: With canopied beds, glass fixtures and red marble, Hotel des Grands Boulevards in the 2nd arrondissement hints at its eighteenth-century origins. It overlays those elements with contemporary flourishes including a sleek French-Italian restaurant by chef Giovanni Passerini.

Play: Parisians tend to escape the city in August, so take the opportunity to explore the Paris Plages beaches along the Seine, attend the open-air cinema at Parc de la Villette or book an after-hours tour of The Louvre. Catch the end of the Margiela exhibition at the Museum of Decorative Arts, which showcases his revelatory work for Hermes.

Slay: By day, embrace effortless hair, no-makeup makeup and ballet flats as opposed to trainers; activewear is a no-no in the French capital. At night, steal cues from the Paris runways, where almost anything goes. The most recent couture shows featured electric blue and green eyes, gilded complexions and rockabilly-inspired quiffs.

Words George Epaminondas
August 2018

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