Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Vintage Ads for our Favorite Social Networks

What would ads for Facebook, Twitter and company look like if they were made in the sixties? Would they leave you with a warm and fuzzy feeling inside? Well, folks, I'll tell you after these messages...

Thursday, February 16, 2017

The Vertical Forest in Jiangsu, China

Welcome to the future of green urban planning. Italian architecture firm Stefano Boeri Architects has recently unveiled a new project for the Nanjing Green Towers, scheduled to be completed in 2018.The green buildings will have over 1,000 trees and approximately 2,500 shrubs from 23 local species. It's a breath of fresh air for overpoluted China.

The tallest of the two towers, Nanjing Green Tower, will soar 230 meters high and feature offices, a museum, a green architecture school, and a private rooftop club. The shorter tower, a 120 meter-high building, will include a Hyatt hotel and a rooftop swimming pool.

This project follows the original Vertical Forest (Bosco Verticale) in Milan, Italy and another one in Lausanne, Switzerland.

Monday, December 28, 2015

Designer Clocks Transform Old Vinyl Records into Artworks

Made in Italy from 12-inch vinyl records, these stylish wall clocks are literally art from former art. Used mainly by DJs and audiophiles, when old records are no longer needed, they usually end up in the trash. Recycling is always an option but I believe they deserve a chance to shine again.

Designed by Francesco Ioppolo, the vinyl clocks making up this chic collection could be a touch of elegance to the interior of every home, office, bar or restaurant.

Take a look at all of the designs.

Amy Winehouse

Jimi Hendrix

Jazz Music

Romantic Dinner



Friday, October 10, 2014

Drawing with paper | Yulia Brodskaya's Papergraphs

UK based Russian artist and illustrator Yulia Brodskaya makes beautiful paper compositions she calls papergraphs. She was able to create these vibrant 3D artworks by perfecting a simple technique of arranging and gluing together brightly colored strips of paper.

"Paper always held a special fascination for me. I've tried many different methods and techniques, until I found the way that has turned out to be 'the one' for me: now I draw with paper instead of on it".

Monday, June 2, 2014

Travel Guide | Italian Charm from Verona

Beautiful Verona, home of the ancient Arena is a city of art, culture and Italian hospitality. Because of its many historic and architectural marvels, the city has been named a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

The main tourist attraction and symbol of Verona is the Arena, a Roman amphitheater that could seat 25000 people, the third biggest one in Italy after the Colosseum and the arena in Capua. The games held here in ancient times attracted spectators from far beyond the city walls. The Arena hosts operas and concerts nowadays. Famous musicians and bands such as Laura Pausini, Alicia KeysMike Oldfield, Sting, Pearl Jam, Deep PurpleRadiohead, Peter Gabriel and Paul McCartney have performed here.

For a breathtaking panorama of Verona, climb to Castel San Pietro, overlooking the city from a hill across the Adige river. It's not a long walk from Piazza D'Erbe and the view is worth every step.

Panorama of Verona from Castel San Pietro

As in most Italian cities, there are several big piazzas in Verona. The biggest one, Piazza di Bra, is where the Arena is. Another big square is Piazza dei Signori, also known as Piazza Dante because of the poet's statue in its center. The most charming one is Piazza D'Erbe with its colorful bazaar and numerous small cafes and ristorantes that offer apperitivo.

The fountain at Piazza di Bra

Piazza D'Erbe

Piazza dei Signori and the statue of Dante Alighieri
Verona has several museums, the largest of which is Museo di Castelvecchio, a 14th century fortress, almost destroyed in World War II. It hosts a diverse collection of statues, frescoes, jewelry and paintings by Pisanello, Bellini, Tiepolo and Veronese. The bridge that connects Castelvecchio to the city is Ponte Scaligero, built in the 14th century and later destroyed together with Ponte Pietra by the Germans in the end of WWII. Both bridges were rebuilt and are now landmarks of Verona.

Ponte Scaligero

As in every Italian city, there are many churches here. Some notable ones are Verona's 12th century cathedral, the biggest church in the city - Basilica di Sant'Anastasia, Basilica di San Zeno Maggiore and Chiesa di San Lorenzo.

Santuario Madonna Di Lourdes

A magnet for tourists is an old 14th century house with a small balcony hidden in an alley in the historical center. Casa di Giulietta supposedly belonged to the Capuleti family. Never mind that Romeo and Juliet were fictional characters. There's also a statue of Shakespeare's tragic heroine in the courtyard.

Main attractions:

  • Arena di Verona
  • Castel San Pietro
  • Piazza di Bra
  • Piazza dei Signori
  • Piazza D'Erbe
  • Castelveccio
  • Ponte Scaligero and Ponte Pietra
  • Verona's Duomo
  • Basilica di Sant'Anastasia
  • Basilica di San Zeno Maggiore
  • Chiesa di San Lorenzo
  • Casa di Giulietta

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Travel Guide | Glamorous Lake Como

A place of rare natural beauty, Lake Como (Lago di Como) has been Europe's preferred aristocratic retreat since Roman times. Madonna, George Clooney and Sylvester Stallone are just a handful of stars who have villas here. In addition to the chance to spot a celebrity, glamorous Lago di Como shines with many cultural and historic landmarks in the charming little towns dramatically set around its shores.

The lake is famous for its magnificent villas, the majority of which were built centuries ago. Among the most beautiful ones is Villa Carlotta, where masterpieces of art and nature coexist in perfect harmony. Completed in the end of the 17th century for a wealthy Milanese family, the villa is currently a museum. Decorated with many sculptures, stairs and fountains, it is surrounded by a huge botanical garden, particularly beautiful in spring when the azaleas are in full bloom.

Villa Carlotta's Fountain at the main gate

Villa del Balbianello, is another famous villa and museum, known for its elaborate terraced gardens. Villa d'Este was built in the 16th century in Cernobbio and was home to many royalties until it became a luxury hotel attracting many celebrity guests.

Villa del Balbianello

Lake Como from Villa D'Este

Not just one but two famous villas can be found in Bellagio, the pearl of the lake. The neo-classical villa Melzi d'Eril, with its Japanese garden, and Villa Serbelloni, a five-star hotel-de-lux also with a garden open to the public.

Already famous as a holiday resort in Roman times, Bellagio is a charming little lake shore town with numerous ristorantes, small shops and cobblestone alleys.

Lake Como is quite big, with an area of more than 140 sq. km and has more than 20 picturesque towns. The most convenient way to see them all is the frequent and reliable ferry service. It might take a week to do it properly but if you only have a day or two try to visit at least Cernobbio, Lenno, Moltrasio, Tremezzo and Bellagio.

The pier at Cernobbio


The Alps, as seen from Bellagio


Saturday, May 24, 2014

Travel Guide | Milan, the Stylish Metropolis

For the avid tourist, Milano, as the Italians call it, may not have the same appeal as more history-rich Rome or Florence, but it compensates with style and glamour.

The city's list of landmarks is not long but it is quite impressive. A vision in pink Candoglia marble, Milan's iconic cathedral, Il Duomo, dominates the historical center, towering over the city like an ancient citadel. Beginning in 1386, the construction of this Gothic masterpiece took nearly 6 centuries. Canals had to be dug to the site to transport tons of stone. Most of the work was completed by 1805 when Napoleon Bonaparte was crowned King of Italy at the Duomo. The official year of completion is considered to be 1965 although there are stone blocks still to be carved into statues.
It's definitely worth climbing the stairs to the rooftop to walk among the forest of stone towers and see the intricate detail on the exterior of this amazing cathedral.

Fashionistas will feel at home in the world's preeminent fashion capital. If you happen to be in the city in late February/early March or late September/early October don't miss the Milan Fashion Week. All major Italian fashion labels: ValentinoGucciVersacePradaArmani and Dolce & Gabbana are headquartered in the city and have their flagship stores in the Quadrilatero d’Oro (The Golden Quad). You can also find them in Europe's oldest shopping mall, Galeria Vittorio Emanuele II.

A lot of stylish Italian men and women can be seen on the streets of Milan at any hour. "Life is an occasion you should dress way the hell up for", as they say here.

One of Milan's most charming neighborhoods, Brera, is in the heart of the city, north of Galeria Vittorio Emanuele II and the La Scala Opera House. Many great ristorantes can be found along Via Brera and Via Fiori Chiari.

An interesting place less visited by tourists is Canale Navigli. During the day, this is a quiet neighborhood that doesn't impress much but at night it comes alive with music, colors and scents form the numerous small restaurants and bistros around.

Milan's architectural pride comes not only from historic buildings but also from modern masterpieces such as the Vertical Forest (Bosco Verticale), two eco-friendly buildings with facades made up of living trees, recently completed in the upscale neighborhood of Isola.

A few day trips can be made from Millan, to Genoa, Torino and Verona but the most pleasant one by far is the trip to the beautiful aristocratic retreat Lago di Como (Lake Como).

Main attractions:
  • Il Duomo
  • Galeria Vitorrio Emanuele II
  • Santa Maria delle Grazie, the basilica with Leonardo da Vinci's famous fresco The Last Supper
  • Castello Sforzesco, an old Viscontean fortress and Sforza family castle, now home to several art collections and exhibitions
  • Parco Sempione and Arco della Pace
  • La Scala, the most prestigious opera house in the world
  • Brera, for lunch or aperitivo (the extended happy hour in Italy, from 17:00 to 19:00)
  • Canale Navigle (at night)
  • The archaeological museum and Villa Necchi Campiglio
  • San Siro stadium for a Sunday game during the season (if you are a soccer fan)
  • Bosco Verticale (The Vertical Forest) in Isola

Santa Maria delle Grazie

Castello Sforzesco

Parco Sempione

Arco della Pace