Just the Trips: 5 Forays for Design Enthusiasts

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Does poly-cotton bedding make you perspire with anxiety? If coffee’s not French press, is it the Spanish Inquisition? These five Out Adventures are for the cognoscenti. If you swoon for slick design and a good story, pack your carmarker-designed luggage and see you in style.

THAILAND TEMPLES & BEACHES – NOV 2018, DEC 2018 (NYE) AND FEB 2019
A spectacle of Southeast Asia, Thailand architecture – past and present – slays in many ways. Open barely two years, the future is channeled through pixelation around MahaNakhon Tower in Bangkok. For a glimpse of the past, our tour visits the 1959 abode of American architect Jim Thompson. It’s his most impressive work; six traditional Thai houses married together. The complex was also home to Thompson’s sizeable collection of Southeast Asian art.

When our tour heads north to Chiang Rai, we visit the White Temple;  Wat Rong Khun. It’s already an opulent homage to Buddha – and it’s not even finished.

SENSATIONAL SLOVENIA – JULY 2018
This trip begins with two nights ‘roughing it’ in stylish Alpine huts. They’re cozy and spotless with crisp cotton linens. Glass walls overlook private wood-burning hot tubs. Even the personal outhouses impress: open your padlock and a tall glass of water closet awaits: more glass walls, waterfall showers and modern minimalism at its best. In an outhouse. In the  Alps.

Once we hit the capital, our Ljubljana hotel for the next few nights is extra slick. In fact, this hotel is a personal favourite of Rob, our company owner (it’s the beds). The location is perfect; the staff attentive; the toiletries masculine and decadent.

SCOTTISH HIGHLAND HIKES – AUGUST 2018
Mother Nature herself is one of the world’s best visionaries. To her we owe the Scottish Highlands. Gear up in some decent boots and get acquainted.

We’ll be treated to a private tour of the Glasgow School of Art. Housed among several buildings, it’s the nation’s penultimate art school.

Let’s not forget the most obvious good taste of all – flavour. On this tour you’ll revel in classic seafood, Scotch tastings, and fine cheese.

ICELAND PRIDE ADVENTURE – AUGUST 2018
For a primitive place called The Land of Fire and Ice – supposedly overrun with elves no less – Iceland is no sloucher about savvy design. Reykjavík’s holy Hallgrímskirkja is a brutal beauty inspired by the country’s basalt cliffs. Designed many years later, Harpa Concert Hall was also inspired by the landscape.

For a taste of Icelandic design you can bring back home, grab some Shorebird sculptures by Sigurjón Pálsson. An array can be tracked down, and they sure beat fridge magnets for souvenirs.

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Shorebird sculpture by Sigurjon Palsson

SRI LANKA SERENDIPITY – EARLY WINTER 2019
There are two things design fans love about this tour. First: the accommodations. From bathtubs in private courtyards, to a thoughtfully restored tea factory, to one of the oldest hotels east of the Suez Canal, rest in style all along the way.

The second is a storyline of two designer brothers. Geoffrey Bawa was the architect behind one of the first hotels we stay in. Nestled into a mountainside, it overlooks a reservoir and is the epitome of tropical modern (think Mies van der Rohe with monkeys). We’ll also visit his brother Bevis’ former home, Brief Gardens, which is peppered with homoerotic art. Things come full circle at our  Farewell Dinner, which is held in the former offices of Geoffrey’s firm. From the water feature at the front, to the weight of the dessert spoons, every detail is excruciatingly considered.

To learn more about any of these slick escapes check out our Gay Tour Calendar or email info@out-adventures.com 

 

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