Travel Trends 2018: Exploring and Adventuring In New Ways

Travel Trends 2018: Exploring and Adventuring In New Ways

 

I’ve become quite a fanatical world traveler over the last couple of years and yet still so many places to go. Which is why I am so excited about next year – I will be checking off 5 destinations from my “No Regrets List” including:

  •  Antarctica  – doing the Nat Geo Expedition in January (paid the balance this week, so it’s real)
  • Nordic countries – selforganizing a 4-week sojourn to Stockholm, Copenhagen, Oslo, Helsinki in June/July

But there is always so much more to see and experience. Here are 3 travel trends to keep an eye on if you’ve been bitten by the travel bug as I have:

#1:  Top 100 weekend getaway destinations per weekenGO

WeekenGO is a great app to plan weekend jaunts to over 1000 cities around the world. They recently did a very comprehensive analysis of top destinations booked by millennials, families and boomers.

  • London is #1 destination worldwide, followed by Berlin
  • Nine of the top ten cities are in Europe. New York is the only exception (#7)
  • Germany accounts for three of the top ten: Berlin (2), Hamburg (4) and Munich (8)
  • Spain grabs two spots: Barcelona (9) and Madrid (10).
  • Vienna (3), Paris (5) and Amsterdam (6) also make the top 10.
  • The top destination for millennials is Berlin, with Vienna best for families and Zurich #1 for baby boomers.
  • Edinburgh made the top ten for millennials, families and baby boomers, but failed to make the overall top ten, while Prague ranked in the top five for families and baby boomers.

Good news for my Nordic sojourn, all my cities made it to the top 100: Stockholm (15), Copenhagen (#16), Oslo (25), Helsinki (26).

Read on below for top hotel trends and top destinations for Meetings and Conventions attendees.

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We are the F**king Iceberg: This is Why Casey Neistat is My Idol!

We are the F**king Iceberg: This is Why Casey Neistat is My Idol!

 

Got to see Casey Neistat (entrepreneur, vlogger, youtube star) interviewed at the NYPL last week on the subject of creativity and commerce. INSPIRING – especially for those of us who come from less than auspicious backgrounds and still manage to build businesses and make something of ourselves.

What I love about him is his passion, his realness and his daring. If you want to understand his appeal and why he has 8 million subscribers on YouTube, watch the “You Can’t” video (above). It is amazing and it’s gotten almost 7 million views.

And if you’re working in an industry that you believe is safe from disruption, wrap your brain around what he says starting at 3:19 on the video. Especially relevant the higher up you are on the corporate ladder. The Casey Neistats of the world are lurking, like icebergs, just below the surface – and they’re going to get you if you’re not paying attention!

I have one more video below that is worth watching. It’s about his unexpected upgrade to first on Emirates. He made the video and edited it while on the flight. It’s gotten over 46 million views. His videos, in total, have been watched over 2 billion times.

Why is he so popular? I would say it’s because he’s honest, funny, and questions authority figures in a way we all sometimes wish we could. He’s the everyman who cannot quite believe (yet) how far he has traveled.

I’ve also included info on his background that he discussed including how he’s gone from being a HS dropout to MIT fellow to multi-millionaire after selling his startup to CNN for $25 million.

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Betting on the AI Revolution in Business and Government

Betting on the AI Revolution in Business and Government

 

I’ve been reading Ray Dalio’s brilliant new book Principles. What a genius that man is. Not only smart and an absolute original but also quite an eccentric. His company, Bridgewater Associates, the most successful hedge fund in the world, has been an innovator in algorithmic decision-making since its inception. Data, AI and algorithms provide the company with the tools to make decisions unencumbered by emotion or swayed by internal politics (this is a huge deal for Ray Dalio, he talks about it frequently in the book).

But now, finally, AI is being touted as the technology of our age. As big a deal as electricity was 100 years ago.

  •  AI is a huge market. The global artificial intelligence market had an overall valuation of US$126 billion in 2015. The market is estimated to grow at a CAGR of 36.1% through 2024 when it is expected to reach an overall valuation of US$3,061 billion.
  • Fingers crossed, we’ll see AI replacing much of the government. Can you imagine how much more streamlined and efficient governing would be? No more gridlock, brinkmanship and general craziness when it comes to things that matter to all Americans: infrastructure, education, health care.

Read on below for more examples of how companies and industries are using AI for greater efficiency and competitive advantage. It’s a MUST READ.

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The Global Megacity Boom: Great Info from Axios

The Global Megacity Boom: Great Info from Axios

 

Absolutely fascinating piece in axios.com on how, over the last four decades, there’s been a tenfold increase in the number of people who live in megacities of 10 million or more people. It’s radically changing where we need to look for signals about trends, influences and business opportunities.

For example look at the major shifts over the last 40 years:

  •  In 1975, there were three metro areas with at least 10 million people — Tokyo, New York and Mexico City.
  • The 10 largest cities at that time included Paris (now 25th), Moscow (22nd) and Los Angeles (21st).
  • Now there are 31 megacities with at least 10 million people, and most of them are in the developing world.
  • The UN projects ten more will join the list by 2030, and all but one (Bogotá) will be in Africa or Asia.

Key Trends

  • Of the world’s 31 megacities, 6 are in China and 5 are in India. By 2030, both countries will have 7 megacities.
  • There will be 8 cities with ~25 million or more people by 2030 — we may soon need a new definition for what qualifies as a megacity.
  • Six of the world’s 10 largest cities are in Asia. Zero are in Europe.

Read on below for more on the world’s 10 largest metro areas starting with Tokyo. Extremely insightful and also includes interesting tidbits e.g. I didn’t realize that Tokyo’s restaurants have more Michelin stars than any other city.

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Cool Neighorhoods to Explore in 2018

Cool Neighorhoods to Explore in 2018

 

My friend Nick Belperio and I started our Weekends in America tradition back in 2015 when we hit up Detroit. The next year we visited Pittsburgh and stayed at the newly opened Ace Hotel in the East Liberty area (pic above).

This year Nick couldn’t join for any of the weekends but I prevailed and then some!  My “cool neighborhood” explorations this year included:

The reason I do these weekend jaunts is they get me out of my NYC bubble and I learn a lot about the country and its people.

It’s also a great way to see which trends (in food, design, hospitality, fashion, art) are bubbling up all around the nation, not just in NYC or LA.

What gets a city on my radar?

  • Hotel openings e.g. when the Ace opened in Pittsburgh I knew I had to get there ASAP; likewise the Freehand in Downtown LA. And when the Ramble Hotel with its Death & Co. outpost opens in Denver next year, I will be there!
  • Retail e.g. Magnolia Market and Silos got me to Waco. Warby Parker opening in Kansas City got me interested (but still haven’t been there)
  • Museums/Galleries/Street Art e.g. Hauser & Wirth in DTLA
  • Restaurants/Bars/Food Halls e.g. I was desperate to check out Bad Saint in DC (#1 Filipino restaurant in US with only 24 seats) but couldn’t get in. However, I did get to dine (and drink) at Espita Mezcaleria with its enormous selection of mezcals
  • BTW, I will be the first to admit that all of my favorites have an urban, Brooklyn-ish vibe to them but hey, that’s what I like – and what I believe is most influential! What I also look for is how this kind of cool aesthetic/lifestyle plays out in different cities and in different parts of the country.

With that as background, I was excited to see Lonely Planet’s list of  “10 Coolest Neighborhoods in America Right Now.” Their #1 spot is the East Liberty neighborhood in Pittsburgh which, of course, immediately validated the list for me since that’s where the Ace Hotel is located and I loved that part of town.

Read on below for the 5 spots from Lonely Planet’s list that most intrigue me for 2018.

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An Excellent Credit Score is the Ultimate in Sexy on Dating Sites

An Excellent Credit Score is the Ultimate in Sexy on Dating Sites

 

Check this out: Financial responsibility (69%) ranked ahead of sense of humor (67%), attractiveness (51%) and ambition (50%) when it comes to what’s most important in a potential mate.

  • A good credit score was associated with being responsible, trustworthy, and smart – and comes in 18 points ahead of cute.
  • Both sexes in the survey valued financial responsibility but, of course, there was a classic gender divide: 77% of females vs. 61% of men opted for fiscal responsibility.

The dating info came from a new survey by Discover Financial Services and Match Media Group, parent of Tinder and other dating sites.

Read on below for where an 810 score places you in the dating pool.

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Restaurant Norman at A/D/O in Brooklyn: My New Foodie Crush

Restaurant Norman at A/D/O in Brooklyn: My New Foodie Crush

 

Stumbled across Norman recently while checking out A/D/O – the creative workspace and start up accelerator funded by Mini/BMW in Greenpoint.

Had lunch there twice (amazing). And just got my reservation for their inaugural orange wine dinner series starting November 1.

Here are more details on the menu as well as background on Norman:

  • Norman is a contemporary restaurant, cafe, bar. It has a stellar in-house bakery.
  • Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner
  • Standouts on the menu include:
  • Buffalo milk yogurt (made in-house and absolutely sublime). It’s served with rhubarb preserves, sunflower seed granola and lemon verbena. Reminded me of the skyr yogurt panna cotta I had while in Iceland
  • Cured Salmon served on the most phenomenal Oland wheat bread bun (baked on-premise) and served with cream cheese and pickled beets
  • Slow Roasted Pork Sandwich with salted cabbage, pickled carrots, dijonnaise and again, served on their home-baked wheat bread bun (photo below)
  • The dinner menu is a bit more challenging but I’m intrigued to check it out.
  • The restaurant was conceptualized by Fredrik Berselius (owner/chef at Aska) and Claus Meyer (culinary entrepreneur, owner Agern and the Great Northern Food Hall in Grand Central Station, co-owner of Noma!)
  • Restaurant was designed in collaboration with nARCHITECTS and Christina Meyer Bengtsson (Claus Meyer’s wife)
  • Norman is centered around an open kitchen with a long marble bar, detailed tiling and soaring windows overlook Wythe and Norman Avenues.
  • Chef is Andrew Whitcomb (formerly of Colonie)

Read on below for two other new indulgences on my radar – an amazing new bakery (and instagram hot spot) and a “treats” shop within the new Kith Emporium. Both opened last week. Also more photos of Restaurant Norman at the end of the feed.

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Retail is Getting Interesting Again: Thanks to Designer Streetwear!

Retail is Getting Interesting Again: Thanks to Designer Streetwear!

 

Two major new openings last week, both entailed long lines, one required an online reservation to even stand in line! All take experiential retail to the next level.

Supreme, 152 Grand Street, Brooklyn

  • No two ways around it, amazing store with skatebowl (same as in LA and likewise reserved for friends and family of the brand).
  • We dropped by the day after the opening party but no luck in getting in – needed to make an online reservation. Lots of security – four cops keeping the limited crowd under control.
  • Must say I was peeved that several bouncers attempted to intimidate me not to take photos of the store exterior from the sidewalk. Total BS.
  • But we did peek in and saw the skatebowl and some of street art by Mark Gonzales and others.
  • It’s also cool that the only signage is the tiny logo on the door.

See more pics below as well as info on 4 more stores worth checking out.

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