Posts about Sustainability

Aurora Borealis in Iceland

Iceland: Sleeping in a bubble

15.01.2022

When mystical veils of polar lights are wafting across northern skies in unknown shades of green, observers from near and far are eager to come and watch the stunning spectacle. A great many people have the Aurora Borealis on their bucket list of things to do at least once in a lifetime. Witnessing the awesome natural miracle when in Iceland can happen in the most comfortable of ways: by dreamily lying on one’s back underneath the transparent skin of an unconventional „hotel“ room in the shape of a bubble. Glamping under a canopy of stars means freedom and shelter at the same time.

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Reading time: about 2 minutes
The Empire State Building in New York City

The Empire State Building: High ambitions

6.01.2022

What’s feasible?

1929: „How high can you go so it won’t fall down?“ John Jakob Raskob (one of the executives representing the Empire State, Inc.) is said to have asked the architects of the prestigious new edifice, Shreve, Lamb & Harmon. The main objective being to devise the highest building not only of New York City, but of the entire world. Initially they had hoped that 80 daring storeys should suffice. Yet, there was a fierce my-skyscraper-is-higher-than-yours competition going on in NYC in the first third of the 20th century and construction of the rivalrous Chrysler building was already in full swing when Raskob’s project just got started. Walter Chrysler’s building did become the tallest one, albeit temporarily. In the end, he was outraced by just a few metres of the finest Art Deco architecture shining brightly at 350, Fifth Avenue.

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Reading time: about 3 minutes
A turtle in Galapagos.Photo: Finch-Bay Hotel.

Galápagos: Rare Fauna and a Leading Green Hotel

13.09.2021

They may not appear overly enthusiastic when it comes to appreciating what’s going on around them on their native Galápagos islands, whose name-givers they are: the weighty Giant Tortoises – eye-lids on half-mast – remain in the know by sheer age. With some of them having been around for nearly one-and-a-half centuries, they have posed as reliable long-term witnesses of the wondrous proceedings happening on the remote archipelago in the Pacific Ocean. 1,000 kilometers west off the South American coast and under the sovereignty of Ecuador, the islands are teeming with rare fauna ranging from cute to ugly to downright strange: the pre-historic looking Iguana’s serrated crest lends him a ferocious dragon-like air; the male Frigatebird makes a mighty fuss during the mating season, when he stages his macho parade in front of adored females and fortifies his efforts by inflating his Ferrari-red gular sac until it stresses at the seams; the Blue-footed Booby wraps its courtship into a wobbly dance performance. By awkwardly swaying from foot to foot Chaplin-style, he offers amused onlookers an endearing sight and has become the star of many a nature video. Preserving the archipelagos of Galápagos is a primary goal locally. One of the precursors in achieving it, is the Finch Bay Eco Hotel on the isle of Santa Cruz.

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Reading time: about 3 minutes
Feasting in the streets: Adelaide's Food and Wine Festivals are legendary.

South Australia: All-rounder Adelaide

25.08.2021

Where the living is easy, fish are jumping and the conferencing is green

The dynamic city of Adelaide, situated west of where the cotton is high on the Australian continent, seems to have struck it lucky in many respects. Blessed not only with a mild, mediterranean climate and the flattering reputation of being cultured and inspiring, its fortunate citizens also benefit from a value-for-money ratio that allows them to maintain a pleasant and easy-going existence in a safe and clean environment close to a deep-blue sea brimming with resources. Adelaide also throws the frequent mouth-watering feast or festival, lushly catering to the gourmet side of life, and is thus rightly considered South Australia’s undisputed capital for fine cuisine and a good drop of wine here and there. Renowned wine regions – such as the Barossa – are a mere stone’s throw from the city.

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Reading time: about 4 minutes
A lilliput hotel near Västeras in Sweden.

Snuggling up in Sweden: A semi-submarine Lilliput Hotel

21.08.2021

Who needs posh?! Would a minimalist wooden cabin – bobbing on Swedish waters – with an interior reduced to bare necessities not suffice as well? Hotell Utter Inn, a pocket-sized lodging solution near Västerås, was conceived by local artist Mikael Genberg and built in 2000. It not merely floats, but virtually represents an islet in its own right. The tiny upstairs-downstairs affair has no immediate neighbours intruding into whatever one might be up to and is always encircled by a refreshing breeze to help cool off a reeling mind. Privacy of a similar quality is rarely to be had this close to civilisation.

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Reading time: about 2 minutes