OK, so you don’t get to meet the man in person, but it’s still a great offer. The two Michelin-starred restaurant at Sketch in Mayfair is offering a meal deal that would put most eateries to shame: a three course Gourmet lunch in the Lecture


 

Room & Library and an exhibition ticket for Ai Weiwei at the Royal Academy of Arts for £49.

​It’s an ongoing deal for any of the major exhibitions at the Royal Academy. My father and I make an annual pilgrimage to the RA for the Summer Exhibition, which my dad, an artist, loves. I am not a huge fan of the Summer Exhibition but I am very fond of my father and enjoy our little ritual. I don’t enjoy the food, though: lunch at the Royal Academy is way too much like eating in a school canteen for me.

So when I heard about Sketch’s deal, I suggested it to my...

​Believe it or not, the entertainment capital of the world is increasingly being recognised for showcasing world-class art – whether on The Strip or the streets of Downtown, in secluded galleries or in the showiest of resorts. The longstanding Bellagio Gallery of Fine Art and the MGM resort are still undeniable anchors for traditional art in Las Vegas, but today the once edgy Arts district has the city’s highest concentration of galleries.

If you feel like a different kind of Las Vegas trip, you can enjoy street art and murals splashed all over Downtown or, for a staggering $100,000 a night, sleep with art by Damien Hirst at The Empathy Suite at Palms. Clark County Government Center and the Nevada Museum of Art both beautifully celebrate the natural beauty of the desert landscape, the defin...

'You are going to be amazed,' Juan Carlos my guide, exclaims as we set off on a tour of the largest of the Canary Islands. Juan tells me that almost half of Gran Canaria forms a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. Yet, if you tell most people you are going to the Canaries, a flicker of confusion, even sympathy passes across their face. They know it for its year-round sunshine and package holidays, but little else.

The Great Rest was established in the middle of the 19th Century when a group of English sailors discovered an island with Europe's best winters. Gran Canaria quickly became popular as a place of refuge, where visitors could convalesce, or simply relax. Brits flocked to the island for health tourism, on the recommendation of British doctors, and the tradition is still going strong today.

Mos...

'It's freezing!' everyone seems to be crying in the UK as if we have never seen winter before. I was in need of something, or some things, to get me through these dark days. Why don't we all embrace the season and the Danish art of 'hygge', or cosiness?

'It's freezing!' everyone seems to be crying in the UK as if we have never seen winter before. I was in need of something, or some things, to get me through these dark days. Why don't we all embrace the season and the Danish art of 'hygge', or cosiness?

I believe things should not just be functional, but also beautiful and pleasurable, and ideally have some kind of eco aspect. Otherwise it is 'just object collecting' as my father, an economist would say about present buying at Christmas. So, to get on this list, the items had to be delightful...

'You travelled by train?' Anthony, the friendly waiter at Bedruthan Hotel's Wild Café asks, with real interest. 'That means we give you a free bottle of wine. Would you like red or white?'

Anyone travelling to the hotel in Cornwall by any method other than car qualifies for this gift. Why don't more hotels offer incentives like this? The term 'eco hotel' rarely translates into something tangible for the visitor, let alone something they can actually contribute to and be part of.

I am delighted - at my present but also by the view and to be greeted with such apparently genuine friendliness. I then congratulate myself, and not for the first time, on my decision to take the train. Not having a car is not really a hardship here. There really is no need to drive either to get here or after arrivi...

The award-winning Thurlestone is something very special. Tucked away in a little corner of South Devon on a narrow winding road, it is an adventure to get there. I travelled down by train to Salcombe and got a cab from the station, which is something I would recommend, as you really don’t need a car when you are there.

With its own excellent restaurant, lovely little 16th-century English pub, deservedly popular kids club and 19-acres of exquisite grounds, along with a beautiful stretch of beach, high quality golf course on its doorstep, the Thurlestone really does have it all. I got the feeling that if I did manage to find something to complain about, that it would be dealt with immediately and with real attention. It is no surprise then to find out that a staggering two thirds of guests at...

It’s a 110 years ago since Beatrix Potter penned her tales, including the one about the most famous naughty rabbit in the world, and the stories are still as popular as ever with all generations. I took my not so naughty little boy on a very special pilgrimage to the Lake District to mark this important anniversary, introduce him to one of my favourite characters from my childhood and discover a very special hotel.

Emma Thompson’s book, The Further Tales of Peter Rabbit, based on the famous character created by Beatrix Potter, has been recently published.  And to mark it, the Lakeside Hotel and Spa has launched a special Beatrix Potter themed package.

​The package offers families the opportunity to visit some of the places that inspired Beatrix Potter to write her books, including Hill...

Wicked’ pronounced one teenage bystander, appropriately enough about my camper van from Wicked Campers. ‘Is that you?’ a middle age woman asked, rather flatteringly, pointing at the life-size version of Tank Girl on the side of the van. My toddler loves her and the vehicle, begging me daily to get in ‘Tank Girl’ simply to go to a car park.

​In the UK we tend to think of campervanning either as a dull pursuit of retirees or as something that only dirty backpackers do as a way of getting around big countries such as Australia. Wicked Campers (www.wickedcampers.co.uk) is unusual for a rental company in that it lets you take its vans anywhere in Europe, but I was happy to stay in this country, pottering around within a couple hour radius of London with my little one.

Our van would be a good choi...

Normally no fan of theme parks, Jane Egginton checks into the Legoland Resort and is surprised to find herself reluctant to check out.

Few grown-ups are fond of theme parks, but Legoland is a bit different, especially if you are considering amusement across the generations. Part of Lego’s magic is its perennial appeal – who hasn’t played with those legendary bricks at some time in their life? Even if you are not an AFOL (Adult Fan Of Lego), the chances are you will have some fond memories of this world famous brick. And Legoland in Windsor now has a hotel, which means adults can check in with their kids or grandchildren and take the whole thing at a leisurely pace.

I was as excited as my two year old when we checked into reception with his granny, feeling a tingle of excitement that we had m...

‘My grandfather was lucky; he got a bullet in the eye in 1941,’ declares Franck-Lin Dalle, owner of the 18th-century Château de Campuget in Costières de Nîmes, a little known wine region in the south of the Rhône Valley. ‘It meant he escaped the war and discovered this beautiful place where he worked until he retired in the early 1980s. My father carried it on and has only just retired. He bravely moved away, as he knew wisely that otherwise he would find it too difficult to let go.’

The chateau has always been Franck’s family home. He once tried working in a law firm in Paris but swapped its thick plush carpet for the land he knows so well, where he passes peacocks and tractors on the way to work. His sister Mathilde lives in the chateau while he resides in a small adjoining house in the g...

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