Author: Lillian Africano

Discovering KOA: Iron Chef Food in a Manhattan setting

Share: One of the many things I love about New York City is the sense of discovery I feel whenever I “find” a street I haven’t traveled, a pocket park or a new hotel. While those places may have been seen and enjoyed by countless others before me, I always have a “Eureka” moment when I discover a really special restaurant. And that was how I felt when I had dinner with my daughter at KOA in the Flatiron district. I had been invited by the restaurant’s public relations representative to review KOA’s modern Chinese/Japanese fusion dishes and their...

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Red Rock Casino Resort & Spa: A World Apart from the Las Vegas Strip

Share: The Red Rock Casino Resort & Spa is just 10 miles west of the Las Vegas Strip, but it might as well be a world away. Yes, there is casino gambling at the resort, but it’s not in your face (or up your nostrils). Check-in at Red Rock is the same as it would be at any upscale resort; you don’t have to battle your way through slot machines and blackjack tables to get your room key. And that, for me, is the best way to visit a gambling destination. Even better, the resort is located on 70...

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TBar Steak and Lounge: A Steakhouse for Romantics

Share: Most of my favorite steakhouses look like…steakhouses. And while there’s nothing wrong with that look, there are times when one might wish to enjoy a perfectly cooked steak in an atmosphere that is…well, romantic. Softly lit at night, with dark wood furnishings and a well-dressed upscale clientele that matches the sophisticated space and the upscale East Side location, TBar Steak and Lounge is such a place. Executive  Chef Ben  Zwicker,  previously  of  the  Four  Seasons,  Aureole  and Petrossian, has created a menu that features both classic steakhouse fare and his unique takes on other classics. For example, Angel...

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Two Great Gifts for the Traveler

Share: Travel-size Luxury Toiletries When you’re staying at a top hotel or spa and find shampoos and other toiletries you love, do you take them and wish you could easily find the same luxurious products for purchase? Now you can. Gilchrist & Soames, the leading provider of cosmetic-grade toiletry collections for the luxury hotel market, has introduced four new collections–Gilchrist & Soames Royal, Shade, GUILD + PEPPER and Stem–that are also available for sale. These new collections, like the company’s other products, embrace cruelty-free development and manufacturing practices, ensuring that all products are never tested on animals, nor contain...

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Viking Star and Her Sisters: A Superstar Fleet in the Making

Share: Not content with dominating the world’s rivers with his ships, Viking founder Torstein Hagen has firmly established his brand on the planet’s oceans with the Viking Star and the five siblings due to arrive by the end of 2020. (The Viking Sea will be christened in May 2016, the Viking Sea in 2017.) In her debut season (Spring 2015), the Star lived up to her name as she was awarded the cruise industry’s highest accolades. She was named Best New Ocean Ship and received a 5-star rating by the editors of Cruise Critic; received the highest rating in...

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