Archive for destinations

Halloween Countdown: Spend the Night in Dracula’s Castle

Posted in destinations, halloween with tags , , , , on October 22, 2016 by shewalkssoftly

Due to hand pain, I’m going to quote my source article to describe this awesome opportunity.

For its Halloween contest, Airbnb offers you to sleep with Dracula by opening the doors of a castle in Transylvania.

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Guests will enjoy a deep sleep, lying comfortably in their coffin, installed in a wet and dark crypt.

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Located in the misty forests of the Carpathian Mountains in Romania, this unusual hotel room will be available the night of October 31 only, and you have until October 26, 2016 to participate.

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Airbnb logo on the coffin pillow…nice touch.
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La Specola Anatomical Collection

Posted in anatomy, antiques, destinations, museums with tags , , , on January 17, 2016 by shewalkssoftly

La Specola Anatomical Collection is on my list of top destinations if I ever make it to Europe.

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La Specola is part of the Museum of Natural History in Florence and contains perhaps the largest (and best known) collection of antique anatomical models. It began as the personal collection of the Medici family, and opened in 1775 to the public.

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According to Atlas Obscura the museum “also houses some wonderful taxidermy, including now extinct specimens and a very questionable-looking hippopotamus.”

I obviously can’t hear the term “questionable-looking hippopotamus” without being deeply intrigued.

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Of particular note is the presence of anatomical Venuses…idealized female forms with their insides exposed. These medical models were a valued educational tool, but evoke all kinds of emotion with their brilliant, uncanny craftsmanship. Some look dead, some look as if they’ve been skinned alive. Others are semi-erotic.

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Have any of you visited La Specola?

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La Specola Anatomical Collection

Godzilla Hotel

Posted in destinations, japan, monsters with tags , , on March 4, 2015 by shewalkssoftly

My dear friend Lindsay linked me to a post about the forthcoming opening of a Godzila themed hotel in Japan.
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The 30-story hotel sits atop the Shinjuku’s Toho Cinema, and there is an “observation deck” if you want to get up close and personal with Godzilla.

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The larger than life Kaiju looms over the building and is visible from the rooms!
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The hotel contains a few Godzilla View Rooms, which have windows that looks out directly at the giant head. Would you like Godzilla to watch you sleep?
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Source
Official Website

The Museum of Alchemists and Magicians

Posted in alchemy, destinations, exhibits, museums with tags , , , on January 26, 2015 by shewalkssoftly

I’ve always wanted to visit Prague, and on my list of attractions in the area is The Museum of Alchemists and Magicians.

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Oh hey, little feline buddy! Cats and all, this is my kind of alchemy lab. Let’s take a tiny peek inside, shall we?
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According to the website, here, you can look under the lids of bowls of emperor Rudolf’s alchemists. At first you will immerse in the wisdom texts of the alchemists, alchemy and personalities associated with alchemy, whether the alchemists themselves, or unexpected examples as Charles IV or William Shakespeare.

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You are going to walk through a magical room of the Faust´s house and then, subtly initiated, you will climb the spiral of life up to the sky. By the „spiral of life“ we mean the spiral staircase bulit by Kelley in the 16th century, and almost in heaven, in the attic between the beams from the times of Rudolf II, you will find the authentic atmosphere of the laboratory of one of the most famous alchemists of Rudolphine times, the master Edward Kelley, who lived in this house.

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I have a sneaking suspicion that at least part of my house will look exactly like the picture below about 10 years from now. That’s the direction it’s heading. I’m not a hoarder (no really!)…I’m an aspiring alchemist.
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I will, however, stop short of emblazoning giant glyphs on my floor. Ceilings, of course, are fair game.
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There is also an alchemical lab PUB on the premises! Click to enlarge photo (Formulas on the walls! Glorious!).
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The Museum of Alchemists and Magicians

Cereal Killer Cafe

Posted in destinations, food, retro with tags , , on December 10, 2014 by shewalkssoftly

As terrible as I know it is for me, I have a major cereal addition. It’s basically the only thing I never get sick of. A new London restaurant, Cereal Killer Cafe offers a dazzling array of classic and rare cereals.

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Twin brothers Alan and Gary Keery have designed a truly amazing tribute to crunchy, boxed morsels worldwide, offering over 60 types of cereal and 30 types of regular and alternative milk (rejoice, ye lactose intolerant!). All milk is offered on the side, so diners can control the exact amount of crunch they desire.
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Rare and imported cereals (anyone remember URKEL-O’s? I don’t) are the same price as common ones, which is rather awesome.
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The walls are decorated with vintage memorabilia…
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And art made of…you guessed it: cereal.
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The cafe also features sweet treats and novelties in keeping with their theme.
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Keery brothers…please consider a NYC location!

If anyone across the pond stops by, please tell me your impressions of the place!

Cereal Killer Cafe

Sprookjesbos, The Fairytale Forest

Posted in anthropomorphic, destinations, dolls with tags , , on November 24, 2014 by shewalkssoftly

Before the Efteling theme park (the largest in the Netherlands) was opened around these works, ten delightfully unsettling fairytale scenes graced Sprookjesbos.

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Dummies based on the darkly nuanced illustrations of Dutch artist Anton Pieck populate fantasy tableaux straight out of European fables.

From the source:
The original set of tableaus contained scenes from such popular stories as Snow White and Sleeping Beauty as well as lesser known tales such as Mother Hulda’s Well and The Frog King. Some of the figures in the scenes were animated with early mechanical effects, and each scene had a voice-box or book that would tell the story associated with it.
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Since its inception the collection of scenes continued to grow, building moments from stories ranging from Little Red Riding Hood to The Indian Water Lillies. Each new scene maintained Pieck’s signature style, even as the technology evolved, and even as older fairytale scenes were updated and replaced. Today there are a total 28 scenes, each culled from the fairy tale greats such as Hans Christian Anderson and The Brothers Grimm. And just like the original stories, they continue to prove just a little creepy.
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I’d love to see a full photo collection of the pre-Efteling lanscapes.
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See the modern park here.

Vicuña Chocolate Factory

Posted in destinations, food with tags , on August 15, 2014 by shewalkssoftly

I have news of a very exciting business currently in the process of launching. My friend Neely is opening a truly spectacular and unique chocolate shop (if you can’t attend locally, there will be an online store as well)! Check out the Kickstarter…and prepare to drool.

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Located in Peterborough, New Hampshire, Vicuña Chocolate ethically sources the finest heirloom cocoa beans from Central and South America to handcraft chocolate bars. Once the cocoa beans arrive at Vicuña, all of the chocolate making happens onsite in the factory. Vicuña roasts, cracks, winnows, stone grinds, tempers, molds, and packages the chocolate for customers near and far. At the cafe, patrons will enjoy hot chocolate, coffee, cocoa husk tea, pastries, and — of course — the signature chocolate bars. Guests can learn more about the chocolate making process by visiting the in-house “chocolate museum” and by watching the factory at work.

ARE YOU SOLD YET?

Neely possesses unbelievable culinary prowess (she was a grand prize winner on the show Sweet Genius!), is passionate about her work…and happens to be one of the kindest, most radiant souls out there. This place is going to be AMAZING.

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I hope my fellow cocoaphiles out there will join in the creation!

Vicuña Chocolate Factory
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