The Credor Eichi II is a three-hand time-only watch that you can safely tell friends and colleagues is a Seiko because it is. Well, Credor is the part of the Seiko Group that creates haute horlogerie timepieces and the Eichi II is a superlative example of what the brand does. The dial is hand-painted porcelain (no ordinary white dial this) and the case is platinum and both are as beautiful as they are invisible to the casual observer. Needless to say, the finish on the movement is nothing short of breathtaking but it is the use of Seiko’s proprietary Spring Drive that elevates this watch to another level. The glide of the seconds hand is pure poetry.
Multiple time zone watches can be the bane of watch designers everywhere. Unlike the chronograph, which has found a relatively stable user-interface and a comfortably homogenous display system, the multi-time zone watch exists in so many variations that one can never quite tell what it is, except on closer inspection. For example, believe it or not, there are countless people who have no clue how to use a mechanical worldtimer. The fault, arguably, lies not with the public but with the watchmakers. The Baume & Mercier Clifton GMT Power Reserve attempts to address this.
Revealed as a teaser for the full 2017 assortment ahead of the SIHH, this watch uses the real estate on its blue dial to good effect. It starts with having “GMT” on the dial at 12 o’clock, right below the 24-hour indicator, which might be too obvious for some but it certainly makes the watch easy to understand and use. At the same time, the 24-hour GMT display is admirably quirky, consisting of a single hand to track the time on a dual-arc subdial. One only needs a single hand for the GMT anyway and that double-track display makes optimal use of the allocated space. The lack of numerals here though might put some off, given that reading the time this way is not intuitive.
As far as proportions go, it is all smiles here. The GMT display matches up nicely with the power reserve arc at 6 o’clock. The date at 3 o’clock, with a rounded rectangular window framed by a sharp-edged rectangular white border, is a good effort at drawing attention to the aperture but again will likely divide opinions.
Chugging along beneath all this functional discourse on the dial is the automatic Soprod 9035 calibre with some custom finishes, including Cotes de Geneve on the rotor. The power reserve here is 42 hours, which is not too shabby given that this is an automatic. Frequent travellers who often find themselves on long-haul flights would do well to recall that the watch won’t wind itself if the wearer is motionless for long stretches.
At 43mm, this is by no means a particularly discreet watch, which makes the aforementioned dial layout quite vital. What looks best in a smaller watch often appears outlandish when blown up so it is no surprise that Baume & Mercier have opted for a watch that could be mistaken for a chronograph at a distance. The look of the chronograph is, after all, a proven proposition.
Movement Automatic Soprod 9035 with GMT,
Power Reserve 42-hour
Case 43mm stainless steel
Water Resistant Up to 50 meters
Strap Black alligator leather
The Chronofighter is one of Graham’s core collections and arguably the brand’s most emblematic, thanks to the unique “trigger” system that controls the chronographs’ start/stop functions. It’s been well received and Graham has, in response, created several variations on the theme. These range from elegant women’s watches to technical diving watches to vintage-styled pilot watches, each with its own adaptation to the trigger system’s design.
The latest timepiece to join the line-up has veered off in an entirely different direction this time, and entered the world of fashion. Enter the Chronofighter Target Denim. This new watch will appeal to the sartorially inclined with its form, which melds serious tool watch design elements with street fashion chic. Purpose-driven design is readily apparent in the bold lines and surfaces of the case, alongside the choice of technical materials: scratch-resistant ceramic for the bezel, and black carbon for the trigger. Meanwhile, the playful aspects of the watch are seen in the blue-tinted dial, which complements its eponymous denim strap.
As usual, Graham has put a heavy premium on the wearer’s ease of access to the watch’s functions. Reading the time is a cinch despite the choice of a smoked dial, which exposes the movement underneath it, as the white dial markings and bold hands create a high contrast with the background. The brand has also eschewed the 12-hour totaliser for the chronograph; in exchange for a shorter limit for the measurement of elapsed time, the 30-minute totaliser has been magnified to dominate the bottom half of the dial for better legibility. Measurement of intervals up to 30 minutes long aside, the chronograph can also be used with the telemeter scale – printed on the outer edge of the chapter ring – to measure the distance to an (audible) event based on the speed of sound.
Apart from this reference in blue, two other colourways of the Chronofighter Target Denim are available. One has a green-tinted dial paired with a khaki canvas strap, while the other has a grey-tinted dial and an anthracite canvas strap.
Movement: Self-winding Graham G1747 chronograph movement with 48-hour power reserve
Case: 47mm in steel and carbon; water resistant to 100m
Strap: Blue denim strap with steel ardillon buckle
Upon hearing the words frosted gold, as we have here with the Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Frosted Gold, one cannot help but recall the festive season. It almost sounds like some tasty treat, like the legendary Frosted Malted of old. Well the Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Frosted Gold is quite a delectable horological treat, a present to itself in a way to honor the 40th anniversary of the first lady’s model of the Royal Oak. The Royal Oak proper itself celebrated its 40th in 2012, which here in Singapore was a memorably grand affair at the old KTM train station at Tanjong Pagar. The women’s model got a suitably glitzy party at the international level but more on that another time.
Savvy watch collectors will think of a movement decoration technique used by the likes of Greubel Forsey and Kari Voutilainen upon reading the words frosted gold – superlative stuff that is best appreciated in person or via an extreme close-up. As it happens, this is related to the Royal Oak Frosted Gold because the gold in question indeed owes its frosted look to an age-old jewelry finishing style called the Florentine technique. According to Audemars Piguet, this technique derives from an ancient method of hammering gold, which we take to mean using a tiny hammer to bang out the wonderful little indentations seen here.
Bucci’s workshops use a diamond-tipped tool to create the tiny indentations, giving the Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Frosted Gold its luster. It took many months of collaborative work between the Audemars Piguet manufacture and the Bucci workshop to port this technique over from jewelry to watchmaking. For the manufacture, the key was how to integrate the new technique with the Royal Oak’s signature combination of brushed and polished surfaces. It must be said that the results speak for themselves. You look at the pictures and you just want to reach out and touch the watch, which is an unqualified win for this new model.
Audemars Piguet is taking this opportunity shine the spotlight once more on the original designer for this model, Jacqueline Dimier. While the Royal Oak was famously created by the late Gerald Genta, Dimier took on the challenge of adapting the design for the feminine version. A major name in design in her own right, she was the in-house head of design for Audemars Piguet until 1999. The brand is relishing the opportunity to talk up Dimier again during the 40th anniversary and pay tribute with the Royal Oak Frosted Gold.
As far as the innards are concerned, Audemars Piguet has gone with safety and stability, which will disappoint some aficionados. In particular, the decision to use the quartz calibre 2713 for the 33mm version has drawn some flak from Internet commentators. This is exacerbated by manufacture’s decision to use the solidly dependable automatic calibre 3120 for the 37mm version. Arguably, if women favor the larger mechanical version, there might be a strong enough draw for the manufacture to consider it for the 33mm as well, if it can find an automatic solution. The answer will reveal itself in time…
- Dimensions: 37mm and 33mm
- Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds, date; hours, minutes, date (33mm version)
- Movements: Automatic calibre 3120; quartz calibre 2713 (33mm version)
- Power Reserve: 60 hours (37mm version)
- Materials: Rose gold and white gold
- Water Resistance: 50 meters
- Strap: Rose gold and white gold bracelet
A dome-less mosque designed by a Bangladeshi woman architect and a Beirut institute by the late Zaha Hadid were among six projects awarded the Aga Khan Award for Architecture Sunday.
The prestigious prize was awarded at a ceremony in Al-Ain oasis city, in the United Arab Emirates, to the projects chosen from a list of 348 works.
They will share a prize of $1 million.
“Gone are the dome and the ever-prevalent minarets, the decorative panels of designed relief and calligraphy. In their place stand intricately structured brick walls that imbue the structure within a unique aura of spirituality,” said the jury describing Dhaka’s Bait ur Rouf mosque designed by Marina Tabassum.
As well as Hadid’s Issam Fares Institute at the American University of Beirut, the winning projects included Tehran’s Tabiat Pedestrian Bridge and Copenhagen’s Superkilen kilometre-long urban park.
They also included the Friendship Centre in Gaibandha, a training facility for the NGO Friendship that works with communities living in rural flatlands of northern Bangladesh.
Beijing’s Hutong Children’s Library and Art Centre was also among the winners.
Awarded every three years, the prize was established in 1977 and is given to “projects that set new standards of excellence in architecture, planning practices, historic preservation and landscape architecture”.
The awards were presented by UAE Prime Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum and the Aga Khan IV, the wealthy imam of Nizari Ismaili Shiites.
The Gumout GT4586 is a fire-breathing Frankenstein’s monster of a drift car, half Toyota GT86, half Ferrari 458 Italia. In its global debut at the trade-only SEMA show, Ryan Tuerck’s insane mod has grabbed the attention of the world with its audacity.
Even an event as car crazy as SEMA – dominated as it is by tuners, moders and hackers – can still manage to deliver an automotive surprise and usually it is from the most unlikely source.
This year’s show has already given the world a 220mph Toyota SUV, dubbed the Land Speed Cruiser and a 775hp Hellcat-powered Dodge Ram pickup that promises to perform as well as a Dodge Challenger. And that’s before we get on to builders like the Ringbrothers and their Cadillac ATS-V phenomenally disguised as a classic 1948 Cadillac Series 62 Coupe.
But so far, none of them have anything on Tuerck’s Gumout GT4586. Tuerck is a Formula Drift driver and decided to create the ultimate Frankenstein drift machine.
Starting off with the Toyota GT86, a great tuners’ car thanks to its coupe form, low center of gravity, boxer engine and rear wheel drive, he decided to perform some open heart surgery.
Dropping a bigger engine in a Japanese car or bolting on turbochargers is nothing new. But taking one of the greatest engines in recent history – the normally aspirated 5-liter 570hp V8 found in the middle of a Ferrari 458 Italia – and squeezing it into a tiny Toyota is something else entirely.
And the results, along with the engineering knowhow and automotive hacking required to marry engine with car, are remarkable, as his videos show.
Ferrari’s V8s are mid-mounted, meaning that in order to put the motor in the Toyota where the engine bay is up front, Tuerck has had to run the exhausts through and out of the car’s front bumper so when he accelerates or decelerates the car breathes fire.
What’s more, the engine’s headers and valve covers are so big that Tuerck has had to jettison the car’s hood altogether, but that just adds to its aggressive appeal. And as to how well the car performs, as a demo clip shows, it literally runs rings around a standard Ferrari.
There is a long and less than illustrious history of Japanese and Italian car companies collaborating, a trend that hit its nadir with the Alfa Romeo Arna which married the worst aspects of an Alfa Romeo with the worst elements of a Nissan. But this collaboration, if purists can get past the sacrilege of using a V8 supercar as an organ donor, is a marriage worth celebrating.
The Sydney Opera House will undergo a multi-million-dollar overhaul, with an emphasis on improving its acoustics, once described as worse than an aircraft hangar, officials said last week.
The Aus$247 million ($190 million) revamp is the biggest since Australia’s most recognizable building opened in 1973 and includes other upgrades to the main concert hall and the foyer, along with a new function center.
Describing the landmark as a “symbol of modern Australia”, New South Wales state deputy Premier Troy Grant said the renovations were necessary to help the Opera House – the country’s busiest performing arts center – meet demand.
The refurbishments in the concert hall will involve the installation of a new acoustic ceiling, specially designed acoustic reflectors, automated draping, and a 3D surround-sound system.
The second-largest performance space, the Joan Sutherland Theatre, is also being redeveloped.
There has long been criticism of the acoustics of the concert hall, which is located inside the largest roof sail of the Opera House.
US actor John Malkovich in 2014 said the acoustics were so hideous they “would do an airplane hangar a disservice”.
“It’s lovely to drive by on a motor boat and it has a very nice crew, and very capable, but the acoustics are hideous,” the American star told a local newspaper then.
In 1999, Sydney Symphony Orchestra chief conductor Edo de Waart threatened to boycott the venue during the 2000 Olympics, calling its acoustic reflectors “a joke”.
“The doughnuts (clear, circular reflectors above the platform) are a joke. They might as well be toilet seats. They do nothing whatsoever,” de Waart told the ABC then about his frustrations, which were shared by his predecessors.
“It’s very frustrating. You get no help from this hall. It actually takes away from the sound the orchestra makes.”
Danish architect Jorn Utzon began work on the harborside structure in 1957 but quit the project in 1966 during construction following a storm of controversy over budget blow-outs and his artistic vision.
Changes to the interior design after Utzon departed left the building – which was placed on the UNESCO World Heritage list in 2007 – with acoustics criticized as inadequate for international opera standards.
Sydney Symphony Orchestra’s managing director Rory Jeffes said his musicians were excited about the improvements, adding they would deliver the “true ambitions” of the original creators.
The concert hall revamp is expected to start in mid-2019 and last for 18 months.
Starwood Hotels & Resorts recently announced its debut in Chuzhou, a city in Anhui Province, China, with the opening of Sheraton Chuzhou Hotel.
The hotel features 348 contemporary rooms and suites, featuring all of the brand’s signature amenities and a wide range of on-property facilities.
Chuzhou is situated in the east of China in the Anhui Province and the site for the new hotel was selected to ensure that visitors, whether traveling for business or pleasure are close to both the central business district and to historic sites such as Zhu Yuanzhang’s imperial tomb.
“The opening of the first Sheraton hotel in Chuzhou underscores Starwood’s continued commitment to aggressively expanding its footprint in the region and builds on the Sheraton brand’s long legacy as a first-mover in markets across China and Asia Pacific,” said Vincent Ong, Senior Brand Director, Asia Pacific Brand Management, Starwood Hotels & Resorts.
As well as a fitness center, the hotel offers an indoor pool, spa and two restaurants.
Glenfiddich has released a new whisky dedicated to the United States.
Glenfiddich 14 Year Old is a bourbon barrel reserve that celebrates the American spirit and pays tribute to the American oak ex-bourbon barrels that are the backbone of the single malt Scotch whisky industry.
Matured for 14 years in ex-bourbon American oak casks, the single malt has been finished in deep charred new American oak barrels supplied by The Kelvin Cooperage in Louisville, Kentucky.
The whisky will be available exclusively in the US.
Glenfiddich 14 Year Old is certified Kosher and will be available nationally this fall at luxury whisky retail stores, priced at $49.99 for 750ml.
Grant Achatz has become the latest top chef to embark on a culinary world tour, with plans to take his triple Michelin-starred restaurant Alinea to the foodie elite in Madrid.
The move is scheduled to take place next January and will involve flying out his entire team to the Spanish capital for a temporary pop-up.
For now, details are sparse. Achatz will close Alinea in January 2016, and open a pop-up restaurant for five weeks.
While Achatz cooks in Madrid next year, the shuttered Alinea restaurant is set to undergo a major transformation.
In an interview with Fine Dining Lovers, Achatz dropped hints on his vision for the new Alinea, which includes everything from complementary scents, music, light projections as well as mobile dining, where guests move from one room to another to proceed to the next course.
“We don’t want to become a museum of ourselves […] The guiding philosophy of this restaurant since day one has been ‘keep it going.'”
More details on the Alinea pop-up in Madrid will be released October 13.
Walking along the turquoise beaches of Bora Bora in Tahiti has been the most popular travel fantasy shared on an app developed to help users curate their own travel bucket lists.
After looking at the most shared, liked and uploaded images on the BUCKiTDream app throughout the month of August and part of September, developers found that, more than snorkeling the Great Barrier Reef or embarking on an African safari, Bora Bora has been capturing travelers’ imagination over the last few months.
The platform is designed to allow users to share their travel fantasies and curate their bucket lists with fellow users, but is also used by merchants to send targeted deals and packages.
The app launched last year with the powerful endorsement of Sir Richard Branson and a special promotional package that included a five-day vacation at Branson’s exclusive Necker Island in the British Virgin Islands with the entrepreneurial titan himself.
BUCKiTDREAM’s list of top 10 travel fantasies:
1. Walk the beaches of Bora Bora, Tahiti
2. Experience Australia, Go snorkeling in the Great Barrier Reef
3. Summer Holiday in Santorini, Greece
4. Road trip across America (USA)
5. See The Northern Lights (Norway)
6. Visit the Eiffel Tower in Paris, France
7. Go on an African Safari
8. Tour the Coliseum in Rome, Italy
9. Visit the Great Wall of China
10. Vacation at the Bahamas
Following the opening of its flagship store in Piazza di Spagna, Chanel has recently opened a new store in Rome, Italy.
The new boutique is located on Via del Babuino and is inspired by a theme special to Gabrielle Chanel: the masculine-feminine.
A Roman courtyard has also been arranged behind the boutique, with walls in shades of orange surrounding a fountain and a hundred-year old wisteria. The pop up store will be open until the end of 2016.
Just a month after acquiring the food delivery business OrderUp, Groupon has unveiled Groupon To Go its new US delivery and takeout service.
Starting out in Chicago, where it has since March been pilot testing with 500 restaurants, Groupon says the service is ready to expand to other areas, with Boston and Austin next in line.
Groupon To Go stands out from the crowded market of on-demand food delivery services by promising a discount of up to 10% on every order.
Groupon is a global e-commerce marketplace, offering subscribers discounts on dining, travel and goods and services.
BlackBerry is hoping to keep pace with the tech market with the release of its latest mobile device that boasts up to 30 hours of battery life.
The new BlackBerry Passport Silver Edition includes a “best-in-class” battery life with up to 30 hours of mixed use; a large, high-resolution square screen; curved corners; touch-enabled keyboard; and reinforced stainless steel frame for extra strength and durability.
BlackBerry Blend will send messaging and content from the device to personal computers and tablets and is compatible with Mac, Windows, iOS and Android, powerful speakers and a quad microphone system.
Other specs include a QuadCore 2.2 GHZ Processor, 3GB RAM, 13 MP OIS rear camera and 32GB memory expandable up to 128 GB.
The device retails for $549 USD and is now available in North America. It will roll out across Europe in the coming weeks.
A new generation of New York skyscrapers, some taller than the Empire State building, are altering the world’s most famous skyline.
And it’s not just the masonry that’s soaring to new heights. The prices have also gone stratospheric: three apartments sold recently for more than $100 million a piece.
Half a dozen buildings are planned or under construction in Central Park south, affording views across the park. Others are concentrated around Madison Square Park, or still further south.
“There really is a new type in skyscraper history that is just beginning to appear,” said Carol Willis, historian, founder, director and curator of The Skyscraper Museum.
They “will proliferate in the next five to 10 years and really change the character of the Manhattan skyline,” she added.
The buildings are between 50 and 90 storeys high. Their architects are sometimes international celebrities. Those who buy are multi-millionaires from across the world who consider a “trophy apartment” in the sky an investment or chic pied a terre.
0ne57 at 157 West 57th Street, known as Billionaires Row just south of Central Park, is one of the prime examples.
Completed in 2014, it stands at 1,000 feet (306 meters) tall, has 75 storeys and 92 apartments in the clouds.
It was fleetingly the highest residential building in New York until it was dethroned by the nearly finished 432 Park, an ultra-thin cuboid of 104 apartments at 1,396 feet.
It is higher than the Empire State Building, minus its antenna — 1,250 feet without, 1,454 feet with.
Another is 217 West 57th Street projected to rise to 1,500 feet and 111 West 57th Street, due for completion in 2018, will be particularly slender at 1,428 feet, and at its widest, 60 feet (18.28 meters) by 80 feet (24.38 meters).
Several other projects have already been approved around Central Park, according to the Municipal Art Society of New York (MAS), the author of a report called the Accidental Skyline.
But it’s not as much the height, which has always defined New York, but the delicacy of the buildings that is striking.
This is explained by the cost of land and New York zoning regulations, which since 1961 have restricted the square feet of land on which property can be built, but not how high.
Developers can buy “air rights” from neighboring, smaller buildings, allowing them to build higher and afford their clients unrestricted views.
Panoramic views come with hefty price tags so air rights are increasingly expensive in a frenetic New York real estate market.
But these skinny towers, made possible by progress in technology and building materials, in particular on how to withstand strong winds, don’t make everyone happy.
The first ones to be built have already cast long shadows over Central Park, sports grounds, the zoo and a children’s carousel, according to MAS.
“We believe that public access to light, air and green space cannot be sacrified,” it said in the report, which has studied in minute detail the shadows expected to be cast.
“Protecting these qualities is critical to the economic health of New York City and the well being of New Yorkers,” it said.
MAS says nearly all the skyscrapers are built without proper public review, so there is no assessment of their impact.
The zoning regulations, dating back 50 years, are out of date, she says and calls for a re-look at urban planning.
According to Willis, these ultra-slender towers will remain unique to New York given their eye watering cost.
“Until the market in New York was able to achieve $3,000 per square foot for construction, you didn’t have any of those towers, because the high price of construction was not repaid in the high selling price,” she said.
Billionaire John Malone has paid $38 million for the Florida home of the late German toy maker Horst Brandstätter. The estate is located on Jupiter Island, a barrier island off Florida’s East Coast.
The property, which sits on more than 9 acres, includes a three-bedroom house measuring about 8,400 square feet, a guesthouse and a roughly 3,000-square-foot beach house with two bedrooms, an office and a kitchen.
With a pool and a boat dock, the property has frontage on both the Atlantic Ocean and the Intracoastal Waterway.
The late Mr. Brandstätter’s company, Brandstätter Group, makes Playmobil figures, one of the most recognizable toys for children.
Mr. Brandstätter lived primarily in Germany but wanted to spend his winters golfing, so he bought the Jupiter Island property in 1991 and built the current home. The square living room is built on a turntable so it can rotate 360 degrees at the touch of a button, providing views of the sunrise over the ocean and the sunset over the Intracoastal.
The estate also has a putting green and a par-3 hole, as well as a separate garage for a golf cart.
The latest campaign of the illustrious brand was shot in the new couture house of Yves Saint Laurent on Paris’s Left Bank.
Fresh from a three-year renovation process overseen by Saint Laurent creative director Hedi Slimane, the house follows 18th century French architecture and design.
Originally built in 1685 by architect Thomas Gobert, the house is called Hôtel de Sénecterre and it is located at 24 rue de l’Université.
The house has not shown a couture collection in over a decade, Vogue magazine notes.
Eyewear brand Revo has announced that U2 frontman Bono has designed a capsule collection for the brand that will launch in the fall.
Bono, who was diagnosed with glaucoma 20 years ago, is partnering with the brand on an initiative called “Buy Vision, Give Sight,” intended to improve access to eyecare in under-resourced communities.
As part of the partnership, Revo is to donate $10 from the sale of every pair of Revo sunglasses to the initiative, up to a total of $10 million.
The singer has reportedly been exclusively wearing Revo sunglasses on U2’s Innocence + Experience tour, and his capsule collection will include five styles and lenses in various colors.
It will be available at Revo.com, Sunglass Hut and other specialty, optical and sporting goods stores around the world.
Kendall Jenner unveiled her signature lipstick shade for Estée Lauder just last month, and now the model has shared pictures from what appears to be a new photo campaign with the cosmetics company.
The US beauty posted two photos to her Instagram page with the simple caption “w/ @esteelauder”. The first shows her lying facedown on a bed covered with blankets, face covered by her brunette tresses, wearing a cami top and lacy underwear. The second sees her taking a selfie with her figure silhouetted against a silk screen.
Kendall and Estée Lauder teamed up back in June on the limited edition lippy “Pure Color Envy Matte Sculpting Lipstick“. Described by the group as “Part poppy. Part orange crush. All matte. All Kendall.,” the high-impact color is only available online and comes in a signed case.
It is the latest high-profile collaboration for the reality TV star, who has been on the radar over the past few weeks for starring in the latest Balmain campaign with younger sister Kylie, as well as featuring in the new Fendi ad shot by Karl Lagerfeld himself.
Earlier this month she confirmed her position as catwalk queen when she closed the Chanel haute couture Autumn/Winter 2015/16 show as Lagerfeld’s “bride”, wearing a military-style cream suit.
To mark the reopening of the Cuban Embassy in Washington DC this week, Airbnb is footing the bill for US travelers.
Just three months after launching listings for Cuba, the short-term vacation rental site has created a network of about 2,000 listings.
And for travelers who booked prior to July 20 for travel between July 19 to 26, Airbnb says they’ll cover the costs by issuing reimbursements.
“To our guests who booked trips to #Cuba this week, good news: We’re celebrating the embassy re-opening and your stay is on us!” the company tweeted.
As part of the diplomatic rapprochement between the two countries, earlier this week the Cuban embassy raised the national flag and opened its doors in Washington DC for the first time in 54 years.
Not long after Barack Obama made his first overture to the Cuban government in December, the travel industry has been scrambling to take advantage of the opening of a new market and rising consumer interest.
In April, Airbnb developed a network of 1,000 listings, made up of “casas particulares,” private lodgings run by local micro-entrepreneurs.
About 40 percent of listings in Cuba at the time were centered in Havana. The balance of accommodations were located in Matanzas, Cienfuegos, and Santa Clara.
Most recently, Carnival Corporation announced plans to launch “fathom” and “social impact” cruises to the island from Miami beginning next spring.
Meanwhile earlier this month US carrier JetBlue became the first major commercial airline to fly from New York to Havana, when it shuttled American passengers from John F. Kennedy Airport to the Cuban capital.