Ballooning Like a Parisian in Napa Valley

Napa Valley owes a lot to France. Following in the République’s grape-stomping steps, Napa rose to prominence as a world-class wine region on par with Bordeaux and Burgundy. A lesser known tie between the two, however, is hot-air ballooning, a Napa Valley must-do, which originated in Paris more than two centuries ago. What started as an experimental paper-and-silk affair has evolved into the tranquil nylon-and-rattan pursuit we know today.

The Other Virgin Island

It's something of a partisan issue. The British Virgin Islands pride themselves on not having "sold out" like the U.S. Virgin Islands. They like to keep it real, keep it pristine, keep hotels just a few stories high and cruise ships at a minimum. So when a new resort opened on the 230-acre Scrub Island in 2010, it was a hot topic. There are the enthusiastic entrepreneurs like Chef Davide Pugliese who helped craft Scrub Island Resort, Spa and Marina's inaugural menu or Captain Raymond Nibbs, wh

5 Things To Do In Seaside Park, NJ

Summer in New York City often means endless chatter about trips to the East End of Long Island and tooth-grinding preparation for an appearance in the Hamptons. But if your style is a bit more mid-century chill—when all a harried city-dweller needed was a tattered paperback, a low-slung beach chair and absolutely no one to impress—consider Seaside Park, NJ. Settled in 1874, this sleepy beach town along the Atlantic Ocean doesn't even fill one square mile on the map. And while it’s geographically

A French Market Takes Manhattan

Americans may remember "Freedom Fries" and "Freedom Onion Soup," but in a grand twist of irony, Le District, a 23,000 square foot paean to French cuisine, recently opened directly across from the Freedom Tower at One World Trade Center. This colorful new market alongside the Hudson River offers locals and visitors alike a special hybrid of American after-work wine bar, high-end Parisian market and Provencal dining experience. There are two restaurants (the invite-only chef's table L'Appart is s

6 Must-sees in Bucks County, Pennsylvania

Averting the crowded apple orchards and bumpy hay rides of autumn, I opted for a high-end weekend in Bucks County. This quaint corner of Pennsylvania is the very definition of the "country" to the proverbial "town," where New Yorkers, Philadelphians and others have come to escape their hectic workaday lives for over a century. After my own frenzied day in Manhattan, Friday night found me in Holicong, Pa., for a luxurious stay in the 1740 Manor House at the Inn at Barley Sheaf Farm.

Love Tea & Lokum in Istanbul

Istanbul's Spice Bazaar may be a global tourist trap, but isn't nearly as rage-inducing as the squawking group tours inside the Grand Bazaar. Here, a remnant of authenticity lives on in this 17th century building, created by commission for Sultana Turhan Hatice. Visually-arresting piles of spices and Turkish delight, and rows of pushy men, make for a wild afternoon of souvenir shopping and colorful conversation. Inside the Ucuzcular stall the sellers are friendly and happy to let you browse.