The Siq : Petra, Jordan


If there is any ONE place that I recommend you MUST travel to in your lifetime, it is PETRA.
A while back I saw a picture of The Siq in Petra, Jordan opening into this ancient carved cliffside known as The Treasury, and I instantaneously said to myself I had to go. A year later I was staring up at a scene from Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade... Did you think I was kidding when I said I was basically becoming the new Indiana? (Petra was in the film which I didn't know at the time.) 

To get to The Treasury, you must first pass the Siq, an event in itself and one that I recommend walking on foot. The Siq, a dim and narrow gorge (approx. 600 ft high and only 10 ft wide at some points) winds its way through a mile of carved niches and ruins left by the Nabateans. This was the grand entrance to the old city of Petra and even today, horse chariots whiz by over the same cobblestone streets that are believed to have been in use over 2500 years ago.. Amazing!

Then all of a sudden, there's a crack in the gorge that reveals a sliver of the Treasury. The feeling you get once finally there is beyond description but I will compare it to being a lot like the very dramatic music used for the Romeo & Juliet soundtrack. No one knows for sure what the Treasury was ever used for – a tomb? a palace? a temple? The mystery remains as do the bullet holes (see pic below) as proof that throughout history it was thought to house real treasure though none was ever found. I still find it astonishing how entire buildings were carved so ornately BY HAND, into mountain sides. It's just unreal, you must see it for yourselves. 

Travel Tip: Get up at dawn and head over to the The Siq and The Treasury before the crowds and tour groups arrive. It's so worth it having the place all to yourself.

Destination Daydreaming


Aside from The 365 Project, I've just added an interesting new tab to my Facebook page called Destination Daydreaming. I'll be uploading photos and info from some of the most beautiful destinations in the world including amazing design hotels, hotspots, and ideas on where to go next... stuff you won't find here so make sure to join me on FB!


Design Hotels : Ferragamo's Il Borro


Salvatore Ferragamo left no stone unturned when restoring Il Borro, a Tuscan estate tucked in the  foothills of the Pratomagno mountains in the Valdarno region of Italy. Il Borro's deep medieval roots are evident, from the private countryside farmhouses to the Italian villas amid the vineyards. If you tire of your designer digs and infinity pool head over to the hotel's winery or the estate's medieval Italian village. And true to the Ferragamo design aesthetic, stylish simplicity and elegance blend seamlessly into this utterly gorgeous historical manor... Wouldn't you love to spend at least a weekend here?

Schiller's Liquor Bar NYC


Many of you may already know how much I loooove brunch so I cannot even begin to explain how delicious the french toast was at Schiller's! Located in the lower east side of Manhattan and part of the Keith McNally empire that includes Balthazar's, Odeon, and Pastis (among many others) this was a perfect weekend brunch spot. The design details were a cool retro-antique, the crowd was nicely mixed, and the food, well, the pics speak for themselves. Not a drop of liquor was ordered but indeed I left feeling drunk off deliciousness :-)

Schiller's Liquor Bar, 131 Rivington St., New York, NY 10002

Palmyra and Ancient Syria


I've always loved the look of old photos during the early age of discovery and the nature of archaeology. Unfortunately, I don't like getting dirty or being hexed with a death curse upon entering a pharaoh's tomb, otherwise this would've been my career of choice for sure. Here are a few shots from the ancient Greco-Roman city of Palmyra which was a crucial stop for travelers crossing the Syrian desert in antiquity. I felt a little like Indiana Jones and those travelers, following their same route as I made my way through Syria to Jordan. Digs and discoveries still continue to this day, isn't that so interesting? 

The Backstreets of Aleppo, Syria


Aleppo is made up of labyrinth-like backstreets and alleys that lead to some really intriguing finds. Remember when I posted about this city's fantastic Souk? Well, the best thing to do is just get lost, sounds strange, but here, discovery basically happens on its own. The architecture and designs tucked away in some of these alleys are so beautiful!! It was interesting to come across structures from so many different nationalities, each with its own alluring details, like this black and gold archway from an Armenian Christian church. The old palace that now houses the Museum of Popular Tradition (below) was to die-for. All those intricate doorways, windows, and decor...I'll show you some more of Syria's ancient cities in my next post...

The 365 Project


Happy New Year everyone!.. So I thought of this idea called The 365 Project where I capture a moment on camera for every day of 2012. I think it would be nice to remember each day of the year through a photo, considering that most of us can't remember what we did as recently as last Wednesday. Two days down so far..364 to go! (don't forget it's leap year! :-)


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