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Category: History

Historically Inspired Modern Luxury Lamps

Lamps are a necessity that often intrigue me. When I see one that is interesting, I’ll frequently do a double take. When I saw the handcrafted iconic historically inspired table lamps from Pendulux, that combine functionality and modern luxury, I was really taken. An elegant tabletop or desk space is often a dream. More often than not, at least for me, the surface becomes a “function-only” zone. At one point, I had a glass table so I would be sure to clean my desk before leaving town. Now I have a beautiful desk in dire need of help. These...

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Celebrating St. Patrick

On March 17th, it seems as if the whole world is Irish, with parades, fireworks and other celebrations throughout North America, Europe, Asia, South America, Australia, the Caribbean and beyond. However, it is Ireland that throws the world’s most important party, a four-day festival this year, featuring carnival-style parades, concerts, visual arts and dance events, outdoor theater, exhibitions and even a treasure hunt. Yet though the day is known for revelry, merrymaking and drinking, it began as a solemn religious holiday marking the death of Ireland’s patron saint. Patrick, whose given name was Maewyn, was born in Wales about...

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USA Wins the 30th Bocuse d’Or

Thirty years ago in 1987, Paul Bocuse created what is considered to be the most prestigious cooking competition in the world. There are twenty-four countries that are fortunate to make it to participate in the grand finale of the Bocuse d’Or, which is at the heart of the Sirha trade exhibition. These young chefs are some of the most promising in the world and experiencing two days of intense competition. They had to first earn their qualifications via various continental events (Bocuse d’Or Europe, Bocuse d’Or Asia Pacific and Bocuse d’Or Latin America), individual qualifications, or attributed one of...

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Boston Tea Party: December 16, 2016

Historic 243rd Anniversary Boston is gearing up to celebrate the 243rd Boston Tea Party Anniversary and Annual Reenactment on December 16, with actual tea from London to be thrown into Boston Harbor!  This event only happens once a year. London’s East India Company, the same company from which the original tea came that was thrown into Boston Harbor during The Boston Tea Party in 1773, is shipping from London 220 pounds of expired loose tea to be again thrown into Boston Harbor. On December 16, 1773, more than 5,000 colonists met at Old South Meeting House to decide the...

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Christmas at the Newport Mansions—When the Gilded Age Comes to Life

Once a year, when it’s Christmas time at the Newport Mansions, America’s Gilded Age comes to life, as bright and vibrant as it was during a bygone era, when the country’s social history was being made by names like Vanderbilt and Astor. The epicenter of this age was Newport, Rhode Island, where oil and steel magnates and robber barons built their castles, using stellar architects like Stanford White and employing the finest craftsmen money could buy. That heritage, spanning more than 250 years of American architectural and social development, stands today in the 11 homes known as The Newport Mansions,...

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Macy’s Parade 2016: A Beloved Thanksgiving Tradition

On Thanksgiving Day, Thursday, November 24, 2016, in New York City, the 90th  anniversary Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade will be held, with millions of people nationwide watching LIVE streaming or LIVE broadcast in their homes—and perhaps tens of millions more others worldwide. This big and beloved parade will have more than 10 thousand participants. Back in the days when my three children were growing up, the Macy’s parade was a big part of our Thanksgiving tradition. We watched it on television, and when a willing grandparent—my father—volunteered as an escort, the kids had the real parade experience—watching it “in...

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Rome’s Hotel Baglioni: Fit for a Queen

Once upon a time an Italian queen moved into a beautiful 1892 stone building in the center of Rome. The century had just turned from 19th into 20th. While she waited six years for her own palace across the street from the building to be finished, Queen Margherita, mother of King Octavio III, so thoroughly enjoyed her stay in one of the first Grand Hotels of Europe that she allowed her hosts to put the royal imprimatur on its name. Thus the Hotel Baglioni, part of a group of high-end properties throughout Europe when it was completely restored in...

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Haunted Hotels

Travelzoo senior editor Gabe Saglie has put together a list of his favorite haunted destinations for thrill seekers this Halloween.  Travel to these destinations…if you dare. Hay-Adams Hotel – Washington, D.C. Before becoming the most famous hotel in our nation’s capital, The Hay-Adams’ real estate was home to the private estates of Secretary of State John Hay and his best friend, author Henry Adams. Adams’ wife committed suicide on the site in 1885 and when the houses were replaced by a hotel in 1927, her spirit became quite comfortable in the new lavish digs. Nearly a century later, housekeepers...

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Live Like a Sugar Baron at Houmas House

There are plantations — and then there is Louisiana’s Houmas House, a historic sugar plantation where history is served up with a dash of eccentricity and plenty of charm. It’s a place where Gone with the Wind is easily imagined, and where Scarlett O’Hara and her fiddle-dee-dee-ing would be right at home. Although Houmas House, outside of Darrow, La., is open to the public, it’s also the home of businessman Kevin Kelly, who bought the place in 2003, fulfilling a lifelong dream of owning an important Louisiana plantation. In residence with Kevin are assorted herons, swans, frogs (real and...

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Sleeping Like a Sultana: Tasodalar Hotel, Edirne

Having visited Turkey many times, but always heading east, I recently decided to go off the usual routes of Cappadocia and the beaches on the Mediterranean and explore the European part of the country. I made my base the city of Edirne, which is rich in history and natural beauty,  such as a rain forest , caves and countless vineyards, lined up like pearls on a string along the aptly named Wine Route of Thrace. The city is a treasure trove of historical sites and buildings, most prominent among them, the 16th century Selimiye Mosque with the highest minarets in...

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Boston Tea Party Anyone?

On December 16, 1773, more than 5,000 American colonists met at Old South Meeting House to decide the fate of three shiploads of tea docked in Boston Harbor. Emotions ran high as the colonists bitterly denounced the British troops who occupied the city, the taxes the Crown imposed on everything from household goods to window panes. Especially hated was the tax on tea, a daily staple for the people of Boston. And there they sat, three ships carrying tea in the harbor, waiting to be unloaded. In a gesture of protest, the colonists refused to unload the ships. Threats...

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Halloween Unmasked

Halloween is one of America’s beloved holidays. We buy decorations in July, we compete for the best costume, we gorge ourselves on candy and try to out-do each other for the scariest house décor. It is the second highest grossing holiday in the United States. We all know the traditions; children come out of the womb knowing how to trick-or-treat. But what is the origin of these national craze? Why do we still uphold these customs? How do other countries celebrate? History of Halloween This “spooktacular” holiday originated in Ireland as a Celtic festival called Samhain. The Celtic calendar started...

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