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Beacher's Madhouse, Los Angeles

By Conde Nast Traveler Friday, April 08 03:55 PM

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Beacher's Madhouse, a 1920s-style cabaret in the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel, is the most over-the-top bar to open in Los Angeles in years (and this is not a city known for subtlety).

Let us show you to your seat--it's just past the sexy librarian, through a trick bookcase wall, and inside a giant golden birdcage. Order at the Midget Bar (we don't make the names, it's labeled that way in neon), where a little person will make you mini cocktails in mini glasses. Looking for table service? A waiter flying through the air on a pulley system delivers the drinks. And don't get us started on the madcap cast of contortionists, monkeys, and mini Lady Gagas onstage. Oh, and half-naked ladies, too. This is L.A., after all.

Photo: Courtesy of Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel

Museo Soumaya, Mexico City

By Conde Nast Traveler Thursday, April 07 03:57 PM

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Greedy, greedy Mexico City. Not content to merely inspire architectural envy with your Aztec ruins, you had to go and conquer modern times with the new home of Museo Soumaya, too.

A passion project of Carlos Slim, the world's wealthiest man, and son-in-law architect Fernando Romero, the surreal, 150-foot-high structure is pure design fantasy. Windowless, except for the skylights on the top floor, the organic shape (reminiscent of Frank Gehry's Guggenheim in Bilbao) is wrapped in hexagonal aluminum plates.

Inside, you'll find Slim's eclectic 66,000-piece collection of religious relics, pre-Columbian gold coins, Diego Rivera murals, and plenty of European masters, including the world's largest private reserve of Rodins. Want to ponder The Thinker? Commune with Eve? They're here. And unlike at the Aztec empire's temples, there's no sacrifice necessary for this pilgrimage: Admission is free.

Photo: Courtesy of Museo Soumaya

Miniot iPad Cover

By Conde Nast Traveler Wednesday, April 06 03:59 PM

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Sure, it's what's on the inside that counts. But when what's inside is a sleek iPad, we think it's only right that its cover be suitably cool as well. That's why we're crazy for this new all-wood iPad case by Miniot.

The ultimate marriage of form and function, this Dutch import is handmade from a single piece of oak, cherry, walnut, or padauk with thin grooves that allow it to fold back into a stand. So you can turn your iPad into a movie screen or an upright camera while you're on the road. See? More than just a pretty face to help capture your pretty face.

Photo: Courtesy of Miniot

Orient-Express Art of Travel, Europe

By Conde Nast Traveler Tuesday, April 05 04:01 PM

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Seeing a masterpiece is one thing, but living it is another. That's the idea behind a partnership between the National Gallery in London and Orient-Express, which has launched 13 new train journeys this spring that expose travelers to famous paintings and the regions that inspired them.

You might view Monet's soft-focus landscapes before chugging through the French countryside to the artist's home in Giverny. Or perhaps you'll get lost in the vibrant Venetian cityscapes of Canaletto before riding the rails down to those self-same canals and waterways. National Gallery experts travel with you on Orient-Express's gilded Art Deco train--a masterpiece in itself.

Photo: Courtesy of Orient-Express

The Oberoi, Gurgaon, India

By Conde Nast Traveler Monday, April 04 04:04 PM

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India has more ornate palaces than most countries have post offices. So it's high time the nation got a contemporary manor to suit its modern-day royalty: The newly opened Oberoi in Gurgaon, an area outside Delhi dubbed "The New Urban India," gives titans of multinational industry a princely place to lay their heads.

Starting at 620 square feet, the 202 guest rooms are among the largest of any city hotel in India. Everything about this property is outsize--the 10,000-square-foot vertical garden, the 36,000-square-foot pool that reflects it, the 50,000-square-foot shopping area. It's also home to the city's first 24/7 spa, so if you're jet-lagged, you can pop on down for an Ayurvedic massage at 3 am. After all, what royalty wants, royalty gets.

Tickets, Barcelona

By Conde Nast Traveler Friday, April 01 04:06 PM

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What do you do once you've revolutionized haute cuisine and your Michelin-lauded restaurant pulls in over a million reservation requests a year? If you're Ferran AdriÓ of El Bulli (closing this summer), you exit victorious, wizard those laurels into caviar droplets, and serve them up as tapas in Barcelona.

Newly opened Tickets, AdriÓ's second act, is like a buzzing avant-garde food court with a bright and Pop-y interior. Five bars handle different facets of the menu: La Presumida (oysters, seafood, charcuterie), La Estrella (the main area for drinks), El Garatge (grilling, pa amb tomÓquet), La Dolša (desserts), and Nostromo 180286 (cheese serums, crunchy ham powders, sparkling mayonnaise, and other items of molecular gastronomic trickery). A sixth small cubicle, in English "the Marx Brothers' Cabin," crams in drink swillers hoping to jump on a cancellation.

Therein lies the best innovation: online-only reservations. Unlike at El Bulli, with its lottery system, seats here open three months prior, so Tickets is accessible with some planning. July in Barcelona is lovely, by the way.

Photo: Courtesy of Sergi Vicente Puig

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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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