In the perennial competition between Madrid and Barcelona to be Spain’s most vibrant city, for the moment we give the edge to Madrid. The Spanish capital is currently bursting with energy, as seen in a raft of new restaurants, galleries and hotels.
The Ashmolean Museum owes its name to Elias Ashmole, who donated his “cabinet of curiosities” to Oxford University in 1677. Over the years, the collection expanded, but most of it remained hidden away in storage.
Peru is a wonderful country, but Lima is one of the world’s less appealing cities. Founded in 1535 by the Spanish conquistador Francisco Pizarro, it was once the richest metropolis in Latin America. Today, it is generally chaotic and sprawling.
Santa Fe is blessed with a wealth of museums and private galleries, but many of them are stacked full of spirit catchers and pastel landscapes.
A top priority of my recent stay was to visit The Modern Wing at The Art Institute of Chicago . The work of renowned Italian architect Renzo Piano, this new pavilion-like structure is topped with a “carpet” of 2,000 aluminum blades.
Poland is a country of unexpected charm, which is now attracting a growing number of American travelers. In the 1980s I saw the shipyards of Gdańsk on television, when Lech Walesa was freeing the country from its 40-year Soviet bear hug.