Tourists Are Swapping Their Japan Guide Books for Instagram

Tourism is booming in Japan, but a growing number of visitors are ditching their guidebooks for an app better known for celebrity snapshots and images of food: Instagram.

The social photo-sharing service is proving to be especially popular among those seeking destinations off the beaten track. Nagato, located on the southern tip of the main island of Honshu, saw more than 1 million visitors in 2017, a 36-fold increase in three years. After CNN profiled the town as one of “Japan’s 31 most beautiful places,” postings of the local shrine started to flood Instagram.

Continue @ Bloomberg

The Best Tokyo Travel Guide for Design Lovers

Whether you prefer the sliding doors and tatami-mat floors of traditionalism of Japanese kenchiku, the cement block minimalism of Tadao Ando, or the slick futurism of starchitect-designed fashion flagships, there’s no doubt about it: Tokyo is a design and architecture lover’s paradise. After all, this is a city that inspired Charlotte Perriand’s fresh approach to furniture design in the 1950s and many of Frank Lloyd Wright’s most revolutionary ideas about architecture. But in a city where meticulous design is, more often than not, a given (simply consider the toilets), selecting a list of destinations on their design merits alone can be daunting. Thankfully, we’ve assembled an agenda that balances old-world beauty, radical innovation, and just plain weird. But a word of advice: Don’t stick too close to any itinerary. The beauty of this endlessly dense city, is getting lost—whether within the countless stalls of Nakano Broadway, the anime-centric shopping mall beloved by artist Takashi Murakami, or the subterranean food halls embedded in Tokyo Station. The key is to alternate visual overload with moments of total zen.

Continue @ Architectural Digest

Lonely Planet names Asia’s best destinations for 2018

Often referred to as South Korea’s “second city,” coastal Busan has taken a giant step out of Seoul’s shadow.
Lonely Planet just named it the number one destination on its 2018 Best in Asia list.
Busan, about a 2.5-hour journey from Seoul, is the country’s second largest city and a popular summer destination famous for delicious seafood and picturesque beaches.

Continue @ CNN

Best of the Best: The Year’s Most Exciting New Art Venues

Giuseppe Penone Leaves of Light

Of the eagerly anticipated inaugurations of new exhibition spaces for art over the past year, three stood out, warranting inclusion in Robb Report’s “Best of the Best” issue based on their innovative design and the sheer quality of the works on view. Our picks: the Jean-Nouvel-designed Louvre Abu Dhabi, Axel Vervoordt’s Kaanal on the outskirts of Antwerp, and Hauser & Wirth’s new Asia outpost in the H Queens building in Central Hong Kong.

Read @ Robb Report

How Asia’s airports are changing the way we travel


It’s a fact of life for travelers. Airports can make the journey a stressful and frustrating experience.
Yet airports throughout Asia are making the once-dreaded terminal a destination in its own right thanks to cutting edge technologies and carefully crafted, ultra-modern spaces.

Read @ CNN

MAPS – Asia’s first animation theme park opens in Malaysia | blooloop

This would be so cool to visit!

The RM520 million ($120m/€105m) project from Sanderson-backed Animation Theme Park Sdn Bhd is billed as the first animation-centred theme park in Asia. Spread across a 21 hectare site in Bandar Meru Raya (Ipoh, Perak), it features more than 40 attractions in six themed zones. From BoboiBoy to The Smurfs, the park features both local and internationally-known characters.

Source: MAPS – Asia’s first animation theme park opens in Malaysia | blooloop