Top 5 Malta Musts

1- If you like your seafood fresh (and really, who doesn’t?) a side trip to the southern end of the main island lands you in Marsaxlokk, a sleepy little fishing village. Visitors delight in the bounty of colourful, bobbing fishing boats in the harbour.

Dabble Savvy: The fishing boats, called luzzu, sport a painted eye on the hull, protecting them from watery danger.

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Photography by Simon Burn

2- Valletta, Malta’s capital city has many charms. Spend a few days in the pedestrian town to see the sights and enjoy the beaches.

Dabble Savvy: The Upper Barracca Gardens are a bit of a climb (the elevator no longer works) unless you enter via Victoria Gate, then turn left onto St. Ursula Street, go the end of the street and you’ll see the entrance.

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Photography by Simon Burn

3- No trip to Malta is complete without a trek to the top of Mdina. This is the oldest part of the island and the 360 degree views are worth the climb.

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Photography by Simon Burn

4- When you’re ready for some pampering, set out for St. Julian’s, where the chic go to be seen. Picture St. Tropez without the hourdes. A short ferry ride from Valletta brings you there in style.

5- Sure, it’s a bumpy ride, but a Jeep safari in Gozo is a fiendishly fun way to see the island’s main sights. Bring a camera to capture the Salt Pans, Xewkija Rotunda and the megalithic Ġgantija Temples.

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Gozo Salt Pans – Photography by Simon Burn

 

GoldenEye

  • Furnishings, like the bamboo and wicker drumtables and stone coffee table are simple and organic in shape. Classic Panton chairs tuck under the dark wood chess tables.
  • Black frames on a white bead board wall display images of Bond author, Ian Fleming at GoldenEye.
  • The unassuming white-washed bungalow with cedar shingles is perched atop an oceanfront cliff that leads to a private beach.
  • Sustainable wood furniture connects the interior to nature.
  • The textured ceiling gives the whitewashed interior a more intimate scale.
  • As the author said himself, “Don’t on any account fool around too much with colours. Keep everything white inside.”
  • Fleming's original desk (the one at which he wrote 14 James Bond novels) still resides at GoldenEye.
  • The villa also features a private outdoor spa bathroom surrounded by tropical foliage, blooming trees and bamboo fences.

 PHOTOGRAPHY BY ANGELA AUCLAIR

Jamaica: Top Spots in Montego Bay

Montego Bay has more than a few temptations. Here are 6 reasons (beyond spectacular beaches, lovely people and great food!) to visit now.

1. Pamper yourself with a leisurely massage at the Ferntree Spa, the ultimate relaxation experience at Half Moon RockResort.

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The Ferntree Spa at Half Moon RockResort.
Photography by Angela Auclair

2. Don’t miss the sunset at Doctor’s Cave Beach. The long pier seems never-ending, just like the legendary sunset.

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The pier at Doctor’s Cave Beach.
Photography by Angela Auclair

3. As far as haunted mansions go, Rose Hall Great Hall is the most notorious and the most beautiful one in Jamaica. Annie Palmer (aka White Witch) is the local spectre. It’s said she murdered all her husbands here, one-by-one. If you’re not afraid, you’ll enjoy a tour of the tastefully decorated interiors.

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Rose Hall Great Hall
Photography by Angela Auclair

4. Immerse yourself in Jamaican culture and art at the Old Fort Craft and Heritage Park. Meet artisans and crafters and find something unique to love and bring home.

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Handmade crafts at Old Fort Craft and Heritage Park
Photography by Angela Auclair

5. Located at the centre of Montego Bay and amongst the cobblestone streets of Sam Sharpe Square are heritage structures dedicated to Jamaica’s national hero, Samuel Sharpe. Samuel spoke out against slavery and was eventually tried and hung after the rebellion to abolish slavery failed. His bravery lives on.

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Heritage sculptures at Sam Sharpe Square
Photography by Angela Auclair

6. Take a walk through history when you visit this authentic sugar plantation at Greenwood Great House. The home features most of the original furniture and some rare musical instruments.

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Greenwood Great House
Photography by Angela Auclair

3 Days in Savannah

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Day 1

MORNING Have a light breakfast at your hotel, you’ll want to save room for lunch.

MID-MORNING Make it a design day. Start at Forsyth Park and enjoy the majestic fountain before you stroll along Bull Street to West Jones Street for some shopping.

12 NOON Get in line early (10:30-11:00 am) because you won’t want to miss family style dining at Mrs. Wilkes Dining Room.

AFTERNOON After a large meal, take a walk through the Design District on Whitaker Street. Visit One Fish, Two Fish, Arcanum and No. Four Eleven.

LATE AFTERNOON Book a tour at Mercer House and enjoy the interiors (and the tiny garden) so deliciously described in Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil. Shop the Mercer Carriage Store for goodies to take back home.

EVENING Once you’ve walked off your lunch and gained an appetite again, have a delicious urban-style meal at Local 11 Ten.

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Day 2

MORNING Have a tasty breakfast at B. Matthew’s on East Bay Street.

MID-MORNING Continue along East Bay Street and shop the Factors Walk towards City Market.

12 NOON You must be hungry again? Stop for a cheesy slice at Vinnie Van Go-Go.

AFTERNOON Dedicate at least three hours to shopping on Broughton Street.

LATE AFTERNOON Coffee time. Make it a café au lait at The Paris Market & Brocante.

EVENING Head back towards East Bay Street for a lovely meal and great views at Vic’s On the River.

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Day 3

MID-MORNING If you’ve got time for a day trip you won’t want to miss Tybee Island.

12 NOON Enjoy some fresh seafood at the Crab Shack: “Where the elite eat and shop in their bare feet.”

AFTERNOON Lounge on the beach and take advantage of the Savannah sun.

EVENING Return to Savannah for a fabulous meal at the Olde Pink House. If you don’t see a ghost there, take a late night Ghost Walking Tour.

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Lazy Days of Summer

  • Looking to renovate their Kiawah Island vacation property, a Connecticut couple turns to designer Erin Glennon (RIGHT) to create a space that is vibrant, clutter free and suitable to rent to occasional guests.
  • In the foyer, a whitewashed Shaker style console with distressed finish handles hastily tossed keys and provides an ideal perch for sea glass lamps. Stacked orange boxes complement the sea green colour of the lamps and provide additional storage for smaller items such as flashlights or even beach-ready flip-flops.
  • LEFT: Sophisticated colour pairings and nautical details, like the navy and white valance on the window, combine to provide the master bedroom with the desired coastal style. The rustic bench at the foot of the bed and Moroccan area carpet add texture and comfort without being too formal. For the upholstered headboard, Erin opted for a practical Sunbrella fabric in a crisp white.
  • Undaunted by previously dark and dated interiors, Erin added painted white beadboard wainscotting to the living room, simultaneously enhancing the room’s natural sunlight and adding architectural interest.
  • White’s such a useful colour for providing a backdrop to the vibrant hues and patterns so well-suited to vacation living. “Now the living room reminds me of a Jack Johnson song—relaxing but not boring,” says Erin.
  • The biggest challenge may have been the dining area. It’s a pretty tight space and yet it needed a table large enough to seat 6 people. In addition, two of the three walls are sliding glass doors, which meant we had to sacrifice a serving buffet. We used the large scale print to anchor the space and create the room’s dramatic focal point.
  • “Don’t fuss. Keep it casual with a collection of mismatched vases.”
  • Aesthetically this room reflects a slightly more rustic interpretation of the Kiawah landscape through the textured banana leaf headboard, antlers and plaid woolen throw. The small portraits above each bedside table are by local artist, Alaina Michelle Ralph.
  • “A bed that sleeps more than one person should always have an end table on each side, no matter how small,” insists Erin.
  • The Kiawah Island, South Carolina property overlooks a lagoon with ocean views beyond. Though their vacation property is four states away, the owners say the setting is a perfect antidote to cooler New England temperatures back home.

Dabble Savvy: To create a cohesive colour story, lay all fabrics on a large table and consider the flow and harmony from room to room.

“I really like the idea of furniture blending into the walls to create an airier feeling in vacation homes,” says the designer.

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The wall colour, Benjamin Moore’s Natural Elements, reads as a light neutral but actually changes as the day goes on, becoming more greenish-blue. “This is one of my favorite wall colors,” says the designer. “I use it to create bedrooms that are, above all, restful.”

Dabble Savvy: A portrait adds a personal element to a room, especially when it’s an original piece rather than a print.

 

Surf’s Up

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Kathy Buckworth takes on another Dabble Dare. Follow her surfing adventures in Huntington Beach, California, or as it’s known locally, Surf City USA. Can Kathy conquer the nine-foot board and rise up in classic surfer pose?

Dabble Dare: Learn to Surf

Kathy practices her surfing technique and finds it’s as easy as 1-2-3 . . . on dry land. The ocean may have other ideas.

Step 1: Kathy learns to walk in a straight line with the nine-foot surfboard balanced on the top of her head (ABOVE).

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Step 2: From belly-down on the board, Kathy pushes up into a yoga-like position.

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Step 3: Kathy balances on folded knee, before the final pose.

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Step 4: Kathy strikes the classic surfer pose. Looks good on land. Can Kathy duplicate this once she hits the waves?

To read the full article about Kathy’s surfing adventure, check out Dabble Dare: Surf’s Up, Issue 3 July/Aug 2011.