Feast of St. Barths
Don’t let the celebrities and itsy-bitsy bikinis mislead you. As befits the French island, the Caribbean’s St. Barths is a foodie’s paradise. This month it will launch its first food festival, Taste of St. Barth. The weeklong event, running Oct. 30-Nov. 5, is set to repeat annually. It will draw seven big-name guest chefs, including Jean-Georges Vongerichten, Swedish maverick Daniel Berlin, and Hideaki Matsuo, who is known for his three-Michelin-star Kashiwaya in Osaka, Japan. Events include cooking lessons, chef contests, special dinners and mixology tips. One of the sponsoring hotels, Hotel Le Toiny, will offer three- to five-night packages for two in a one-bedroom villa that include several festival meals, a rental car and daily breakfast; from $4,300 (800-680-0832, www.letoiny.com). Another, Hotel Guanahani & Spa, will offer three nights with nightly dinners featuring the festival menu, a rental car and more; from $2,900 per room (800-216-3774, www.leguanahani.com). Find more information about the festival at www.saintbarth-tourisme.com.
Combining an architectural landmark with bold programming, the new Canadian Museum for Human Rights looks to establish Winnipeg as a cultural capital. Albuquerque-based architect Antoine Predock designed the massive, 260,000-square-foot, glass-wrapped building that routes visitors from the relative darkness of ground level, where basic human rights are defined, up through a series of bridges over six levels designed to represent the path to illumination, through galleries that trace the history of human rights. Visitors can climb the final 23-story Tower of Hope for panoramic views of the city. Admission: $8-$15; free for children younger than 7. 877-877-6037, www.museumforhumanrights.ca.
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Doubling Down in Vegas
After decades of hotels that paid homage to foreign countries such as Egypt and Italy, Las Vegas’ newest high-rollers emulate two of America’s sexier locales. The SLS brand, which originated in Beverly Hills, recently spun off SLS Las Vegas, with 1,613 rooms in the place of the former Sahara Hotel & Casino. As at other SLS properties, French designer Philippe Starck handles the dramatic interiors, and chef Jose Andres operates a restaurant. L.A. nods include a 10,000-square-foot Fred Segal shop. Down the strip, the new Delano Las Vegas replaces The Hotel with a 1,117-suite tower adjacent to Mandalay Bay, a western companion to the original Delano in Miami’s South Beach. Its 13-room Bathhouse Spa adapts to the desert with treatments featuring cacti and wildflowers. SLS rooms from $109, 855-761-7757, www.slslasvegas.com; Delano rooms from $200, 877-632-5400, www.delanolasvegas.com.
The adage “It’s not where you go, it’s who you know” fits New York like a kidskin glove. Matching Manhattan’s greatest sights with some of its most interesting residents, the new Walks of New York offers small-group tours, limited to 12 guests each. Tackle Broadway with a former stage manager offering behind-the-curtain access. Tour the High Line park with a professional photographer, who can point out the best vantage points. See the Metropolitan Museum through the eyes of an engaging art historian, who offers art and the story of the Met itself. And eat at two of the restaurants run by famous chef Mario Batali, who designed the Greenwich Village culinary itinerary, and visit his favorite local food shops. Tours range from $35 to $64; 888-683-8671, www.walksofnewyork.com.
Galapagos by Land
While most international travelers still visit Ecuador’s Galapagos Islands by ship, landlubbers will have a novel option with the new Pikaia Lodge, which opened Oct. 1. The 14-room luxury resort on Santa Cruz Island, just outside of the archipelago’s national park, shares land with a giant tortoise reserve replacing a former cattle ranch. The sustainably built, carbon-neutral lodge features local teak wood furniture and bamboo floors in rooms with floor-to-ceiling windows and private terraces. From the upland location, it’s a short trip to a white sand beach, and the resort’s 100-foot yacht will provide day trips to nearby islands that are home to sea lion, iguana and bird colonies in Galapagos National Park. Three-night packages start at $3,230 per person, double occupancy. 011-593-4371-1670, www.pikaialodgegalapagos.com.