Travel notes, reviews and useful tips

Yokohama Marine Tower

Yokohama Marine Tower

Sep 21, 2012

Where to go when you want to see night views overlooking Yokohama Bay in Japan? The obvious choice would be the 60+-storey Landmark Tower’s observation deck. But the admission fee is rather expensive there. If you’re pinching pennies like me then place to be is the Yokohama Marine Tower. It’s right at the end of Yamashita Park, offering a...

Shin-Tomei Expressway: Surugawan-Numazu Service Area

Shin-Tomei Expressway: Surugawan-Numazu Service Area

Apr 23, 2012

One of the nice things about road transportation in Japan is the presence of Service Areas (SA’s or rest stops) along expressways. Each SA houses restaurants or food courts, coffee shops, souvenir shops, outdoor food stalls, gasoline stations, and most importantly, plenty of clean restrooms. Some even have parks, dog walks, shower booths and beds for...

For Better or Worse: Avery Fisher Hall and The New York Phil

For Better or Worse: Avery Fisher Hall and The New York Phil

Nov 24, 2011

The issues surrounding Avery Fisher Hall, home of the New York Philharmonic, could make up a novel. Concert halls such as the Boston Symphony Hall (completed 1900), the Vienna Musikvereinssall (1870), and the Leipzig Gewandhaus (1885) are famous for their impeccable acoustics. The Avery Fisher Hall, completed in 1962, is not. The hall has gone through major...

On Highway Tunnels

On Highway Tunnels

Aug 24, 2011

Road tunnels might not qualify as interior design prospects. Their shape is basically a given, they don’t need furnishings apart from lighting fixtures, and adding decorative murals to their side walls will only distract the driver. We were watching an old episode of Top Gear (UK version) the other day and one of the presenters, who was driving on a...

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