Boston’s Mad Hatter

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Categories : Travel news

In this issue: Boston, Berlin, Venice, D.C., and Seattle...

Eat:In Boston, a hat trickMarie Galvin, a Boston hatmaker to the stars, has opened an amazing new studio/retail space -- Galvinized Headwear -- in the SoWa arts district. Galvin trained in Ireland to become a certified milliner, which, after consulting Webster's 11, we learned means someone who makes fancy hats. Her work has been seen on the heads of Taye Diggs and Claire Danes and in the film The Devil Wears Prada.

Eat: Fish with a twist in D.C.
Something's fishy in the Washington D.C. neighborhood of Georgetown, so we decided to get to the bottom of it. What we found was Hook, a 155-seat restaurant done up in Italian walnut, white leather and chrome, a kitchen powered by wind energy, and a thoroughly charming 28-year-old chef -- Barton Seaver -- with a passion for sustainable seafood. Try the blackfin tuna with creme fraîche, potato pur e and braised fennel. We're hooked. Dinner for two $100.

Drink: Simian shenanigans in New York
Some things will always be with us -- sunshine after the rain, Joan Rivers, and New York's Monkey Bar, in the Hotel Elys e. This playground of stars of yesteryear -- Marlon Brando, Joe DiMaggio, and, er, Joan Rivers -- reopened recently with restored primate-themed murals, a revamped cocktail list, and a spiffy pan-Asian restaurant. Go ape for a Banana Split cocktail ($12), a lethal combo of Meyer's rum, Frangelico, Cointreau, Sambuca, and banana pur e, topped with shaved chocolate.

Play: In Berlin, a fake beach
Willkommen to Berlin's happiest summer phenomenon -- the artificial outdoor beach in hip Kreuzberg. At Kiki Blofeld, on the river Spree, pool tables are shaded under palm trees, lights are strung in the branches, and verdant grassy knolls make ideal resting spots. Grab a piña colada and kick back to any of the live local and international bands playing this summer. Life is a cab-ahhhh-ret!!! Near Kopenicker Street on the bank of the Spree. Mon-Sun. Opens at 12 noon.

Stay: Get thee to a nunnery -- in Venice?
The hottest ticket in Venice right now is the former convent-cum-hotel Bauer Il Palladio Hotel Spa. You can't swing a nun's habit around the place without hitting beautiful Murano-glass lanterns or 16th-century brick walls. Set on the exclusive island of Giudecca, this is the fifth feather in the hat of hotelier Francesca Bortolotto Possati, who uses a solar powered boat to transport guests to and from the city's many islands. Bring big plastic -- double rooms start at $738.

See: High times in Seattle
It's a bird! It's a plane! No -- it's nine cars hanging in the lobby of the Seattle Art Museum, which just reopened a month ago after major renovation and expansion. Besides the foyer installation, by artist Cai Guo-Qiang, which includes rods of colored light shooting from each automobile, the museum has at least 200 new works on display, part of a recent buying spree that netted 1,000 new acquisitions. Among the new works on display are new Native American and African pieces in addition to works by Georgia O'Keeffe, Constantin Brancusi, and Mark Rothko.

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