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Simplethings Sandwich & Pie Shop, Los Angeles, California

By Conde Nast Traveler Friday, November 12 10:55 AM

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Feeling overwhelmed? The complexity of life getting you down? We have the answer: Pie. There are few things more comforting--perhaps it's the taste of simpler times, when your meals were home-cooked and you didn't have to pay rent. From next week, Angelenos can get back to basics at Simplethings, a quaint little shop selling pies and sandwiches that's sure to become a standout among L.A.'s innumerable girly cupcake and frozen yogurt joints.

This Third Street shop will offer five or six sweet and savory pies daily, as well as two or three specials, including executive chef Carrie Cusack's signature Missouri Mud Pie. And since they come in individual four-inch sizes, you can also take home a sampler six-pack. Now, that's a whole lot of comfort.

Photo: Simplethings

The Wellesbourne, Los Angeles

By Conde Nast Traveler Thursday, November 11 10:41 AM

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When the weather outside is frightful, there's nothing like a bar serving classic cocktails beside a roaring fire--someplace, in fact, like the newly opened Wellesbourne. We like it so much, we're even prepared to forget that--despite its 19th-century-manor appearance--it's in West Los Angeles rather than the English countryside.

The Wellesbourne has wooden booths with little desk lamps, walls lined with books or toile wallpaper, assorted comfy sofas, and a stone fireplace--all freshly aged for added atmosphere. Along with classic cocktails, it will soon serve traditional pub grub like Welsh rarebit and that classic Brit pudding-and-sausage combo, toad in the hole.

So what if snowflake sightings are rare in L.A.? This is the perfect place to toast the festive season with a Brandy Alexander.

Photo: Courtesy of Elizabeth Daniels

Jawbone's Jambox Wireless Speakers

By Conde Nast Traveler Wednesday, November 10 10:35 AM

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If you've ever sat beside a screaming baby on a long flight, you'll appreciate that just because something is small doesn't mean it's quiet. But that's not always a bad thing.

Consider the Jambox, Jawbone's new wireless speaker and speakerphone. It's a mere six inches long, under two inches high, and weighs 12 ounces, yet it blasts out 85 decibels of sound. You can sync it to a Bluetooth-enabled piece of gadgetry (like your phone, iPod, laptop, and iPad) to play music on the beach, get the full audio impact of a computer game in your hotel room, or organize a conference call. And it comes in four different colors and patterns, too: Black Diamond, Blue Wave, Red Dot, and Grey Hex.

Small, perfectly formed, and unlike a baby, it can be switched off on takeoff.

Photo: Jawbone

Chalet Chloe, Saas-Fee, Switzerland

By Conde Nast Traveler Tuesday, November 09 10:25 AM

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Stay at this funky new chalet in the Swiss Alps and you might not even bother putting on your snow boots.

Opening this coming season in the village of Saas-Fee (near the Hannig lift station, if you do decide to venture out), Chalet Chloe is a three-floor property with four double bedrooms and a bunk room for kids. This place has the wood paneling and kick-ass views we love about traditional Swiss chalets, but it's the cool lighting, rotating fireplace, and buttery leather sofas that will make it impossible to extract yourself, especially after a couple of mugs of Glühwein. The huge sundeck and sauna don't hurt, either.

Suddenly the great outdoors doesn't seem so great.

Photo: Joe Condron

Discovery Adventures' Classic Japan Tour

By Conde Nast Traveler Monday, November 08 04:41 PM

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Yes, Japan has the high-tech, neon-lit spectacle that is Tokyo, but seriously, people, don't you spend enough time in the fast lane? Why not slow down a little, have a cup of tea, and contemplate the wonders of classic Japan instead?

On Discovery Adventures' new nine-day tour, you can bathe in a hot spring at the foot of Mount Fuji, stroll around Kyoto's geisha districts, and get private access to a former teahouse to see traditional music and dance performances. A few days of this, and you might even switch off your cell.

And for adrenaline junkies who can't switch off, it's also possible to slot in some high-octane Tokyo time, too.

Classic Japan Tour starts March 26, 2011, from $4,399

Photo: Discovery Adventures

Prices and other information were accurate at press time, but are subject to change. Please confirm details with individual establishments before planning your trip.

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