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4 Reasons to Travel in May


Kitesurfoff a private island in the Philippines, be one of the first guests at one of the coolest members' clubs in Asia, and more. Here are four reasons to pack your bags this month.

Published on May 3, 2019

A breezy private island in the Philippines just became a kitesurfing magnet


Courtesy of amanpulo.


Spread across Pamalican Island, a seven-kilometer strip of white sand and emerald-green hinterland in Palawan, the Amanpulo isn’t just an idyllic spot for a far-flung vacation—it’s also a prime sea-sport locale. Celebrating its 25th anniversary, the beloved boutique hideaway this year launched its own Kite & Surf Centre on the island’s eastern side, which fronts the seasonal northeasterly winds known locally as Amihan. Blowing winds of 15 to 35 knots from mid-October through March, Amihan makes for ideal kitesurfing conditions for both beginners and pros alike. Guests can launch right from the beach with guidance by Amanpulo’s professional instructors, including Paula Rosales, ranked as one of the best female kitesurfers in Asia. Of course, in the record-every-moment age of Instagram, lessons can include video footage from the center’s waterproof stabilized cameras for the ultimate beachside brag. aman.com; contact amanpulores@aman.com for pricing and scheduling details. — ELOISE BASUKI

After 18 years in the making, a New Qatari Museum Combines Past and Present


The newly opened National Museum of Qatar, in Doha.

The desert rose, an intricate crystal formation found in Arabia, was the model for the petal-like design of Jean Nouvel’s National Museum of Qatar (qm.org.qa), which opened in late March in Doha, the capital. Nearly two decades in the making, the museum is made up of 11 galleries that trace the history of this small Persian Gulf country. The collection includes artifacts from ancient nomadic and fishing communities, an 1865 carpet embroidered with 1.5 million pearls, and work from contemporary Qatari artists. The centerpiece of the kilometer-long exhibition space is the restored century-old palace of Sheikh Abdullah bin Jassim al-Thani, an influential Qatari leader. — PETER TER ZIAN

The Best New Hotel in Scotland…Is a Boat


Fingal, a new ship-hotel in Leith.


Edinburgh’s seaport; Fingal’s Hyskeir Luxury Cabin.

The grit of Leith’s historic docks melted away as I ascended the red-carpeted gangplank into the floating haven of Fingal, a permanently moored ship-hotel that opened in January in Edinburgh’s port district. A meticulous makeover—courtesy of the team behind the nearby Royal Yacht Britannia, a former ship of the Queen that has been converted into an attraction—has done away with the relics of Fingal’s past as a lighthouse supply boat. It is now decked out in Art Deco style, with sycamore paneling and doors clad in soft sea-green leather. The 23 cabins, all named after Scottish lighthouses, are spacious and superbly crafted, with brass light fixtures, tartan throws, and headboards stitched with nautical contour maps of the country’s marine topography. The upperdeck bar serves breakfast, a lavish afternoon tea and a light dinner. And with some of the city’s best restaurants just steps away, you’ll hardly mind disembarking for fine dining elsewhere. fingal.co.uk; doubles from £300. — HARRIET O’BRIEN

All the Cool Kids Are Heading to North Mumbai


A dining room at the new Soho House Mumbai.


The 38-room Soho House Mumbai (sohohousemumbai.com; doubles from Rs12,700), the first foray into Asia by the members’ club and hotel brand, was a hit from the day it opened last fall. Guest rooms feature Rajasthani textiles (like recycled-sari lampshades so eye-catching I was tempted to take one home) and a cocktail set for mixing martinis. The brand signatures—cinema, rooftop pool, Italian restaurant—are all here, along with works by South Asian artists (look for the crystal NO IS OK sign by Raqs Media Collective). But the best part is the location. Soho House brings an opulence and exclusivity that had been lacking in North Mumbai, making it an ideal new base for exploring the area. And explore you should: the location is in Juhu Beach, an upscale residential neighborhood that is home to Bollywood, while neighboring Bandra is India’s answer to Brooklyn. Hit these spots in Bandra, then cab home and end your night at the hotel bar, where you can sip a tequila-based Picante de la Casa and rub shoulders with the city’s movers and shakers. — PRI SHEWAKRAMANI

1. KCROASTERS, in the bylanes of Bandra, is a cozy café with an earthy vibe and some of the best Indian-grown craft coffee in town. koinoniacoffeeroasters.com.

2. BHAANE sells colorful streetwear-inspired apparel and houses the sneaker store-within-astore VegNonVeg. bhaane.com.

3. IZUMI Stop by this 15-seat izakaya for pork tonkotsu ramen, seared salmon teriyaki rolls, and harusame salad. fb.com/izumibandra; mains from Rs621.

4. Go for lunch at PALI BHAVAN, a modern Indian restaurant where must-tries include a decadent pink-peppercorn prawn curry and paan kulfi, a frozen dessert. fb.com/palibhavan; mains Rs345–Rs1,380.

5. NICOBAR, the prolific home-décor and fashion boutique, has an outpost here, selling everything from forest-motif pillows and polka-dot dresses to gold statement pendants and bold traveltotes. nicobar.com.

6. At BASTIAN, a notable culinary newcomer, you can sample local ingredients in playfully remixed dishes from around the globe, such as bacon-and-cheese naan or spicy crab thermidor. fb.com/bastianmumbai; mains from Rs621.

 

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