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San Francisco: turning back the carbon clock

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Let’s hear it for New York: the city’s best live music venues

The city that brought you Lou Reed, Lady Gaga and Jay-Z has never been short of venues. Whether it’s blockbuster bands or hot new talent you're after, Edmund Vallance suggests eight of the best places to hear live music

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New York: The Benjamin

A resident sleep expert in the city that never sleeps? Michael Johnson catches up on some serious shut-eye at this innovative Manhattan hotel

USA: The Little Nell, Aspen

This five-star heavyweight in Aspen offers some serious chic on the peak. Sunshine Flint hits the slopes with the global elite

Germany: Sofitel Berlin Kurfurstendamm

On-trend, reliable and luxurious, this German outpost of the Sofitel brand ticks all the right boxes. So please don’t be put off by the fact it’s part of a chain, says Sophy Grimshaw

Five must-visit new museums and galleries in the USA

With rich histories, superb architecture and impressive art collections, get your cultural fix at these must-see new American museums

The world’s best villas

An abode in Death Valley, a converted kiln and a palatial property costing £18,000 a night... Issy D’Arcy Clark scours the globe for one-off wonders

What is the smell of Victoria Falls?

This was the question facing perfumer Tammy Frazer, hired to create an evocative fragrance that would capture a world wonder in a bottle. These are her notes from her scent-finding expedition

India: Hilton Shillim Estate Retreat and Spa

Set amidst the scenic landscape of the Western Ghats, and with one of the most extensive spas in Asia, this retreat takes the concept of rest and rejuvenation to a different level, writes Ruth Metzstein

UK: Ham Yard, London

It’s slap bang in the middle of Soho and moments from Mayfair, but with a private cinema, bowling alley and magical roof terrace, Lucy King finds this luxury big hitter hard to leave

Street photography in Durban

In a world of cellphone cameras and selfies, Durban’s tech-savvy portrait photographers make a living capturing those special moments for customers on the beachfront and city streets

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Spotlight On

Six New York food markets where you can lunch with locals

Indoor food halls may not be NYC’s claim to fame, but a renewed interest is changing the way locals eat. Want to browse all of the city’s buzz-worthy bites under one roof? These are your best bets, says local food writer Elspeth Velten

North Fork: Welcome to the Un-Hamptons

One of the historical holiday colonies of the American Northeast, The Hamptons is the super-exclusive province of millionaires and billionaires. While the smart set stay south, the bargain hunters and tastemakers head for the spectacular wetlands of Long Island’s North Fork. But how long can it retain its innocence? Mark Jones pays a visit

The freezing trail from Alaska to Vancouver

Seasoned independent traveller Simon Calder doesn't do cruises. But hold the light entertainment: the cruise from Alaska to Vancouver is a journey to the rugged, freezing, awe-inspiring edge of the world

Washington: beyond the West Wing

A kindred spirit of Harlem in NYC, Washington’s U Street was known as ‘Black Broadway’ in the 1950s. After a cycle of decline, regeneration and gentrification, Chris Leadbeater finds that the area never really lost its soul

Banks: my LA

The singer-songwriter sensation and LA local gives Britt Collins the inside track on where to shop, eat and see live music in Los Angeles

San Francisco: Maupin's real Tales of the City

He's been called the man who ‘invented San Francisco' but with his final Tales of the City book in the bag, has Armistead Maupin moved on? He talks to Eva Wiseman about fame, fans and visiting Russia

Seattle's best street food

To celebrate the Chowtzer Awards for the world's best fast, cheap and street-style food this weekend, we ask Seattle food blogger Naomi Bishop some quickfire questions about her favourite local mouthfuls

Five of Austin's best swimming holes

What could be better than visiting one of the USA's hippest and fastest-growing cities this summer? A range of cooling pools to jump into when the heat gets too much. Isabelle D'Arcy Clark picks some of the best spots to take a dip.