Enjoying Philadelphia

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We bet you didn’t know that Philadelphia was once the capital of the United States many years ago! It’s one of the most interesting and iconic cities in the USA, and well worth checking out if you ever get the chance to go. There are so many cities in the United States that offer different things to different people, and it largely depends on what you want out of the experience.

If you’re looking for a city full of loads of great culture, and plenty of great things to do, then Philly is definitely the place for you. This is a city you must explore whenever the opportunity presents itself, because it gives you a lot of scope for discovery – you will learn so much you never knew about the country as a result. Here are some of the things we absolutely insist you experience when you head to Philadelphia.

See the Liberty Bell

One of the most iconic symbols of American independence has got to be the stunning Liberty Bell. Philly is the home of the Liberty Bell, and you can’t visit the city without seeing that stunning sight. We recommend you organize a trip to see the bell when you first arrive – you can do a guided tour if you want to learn about the history of the bell, as well as why it is so important to this country. The Liberty Bell Center is the ideal place to go if you want to enjoy the full experience of seeing this cultural icon.

Philadelphia Museum of Art

Art and culture are hugely important things when you go traveling – you know we’re big on those. So, when you are in Philly, we recommend taking a trip to the stunning Philadelphia Museum of Art. The museum is among the top 10 most visited in the world, and this is most likely due to it being immortalized in the movie Rocky. You can head to the museum and mimic Rocky’s signature celebration at the top (we don’t expect you to run all the way up) before heading inside. The museum has some stunning exhibitions, and you could spend plenty of time enjoying some of the city’s most stunning artwork.

Have a cheesesteak

Food is another thing that makes Philadelphia so appealing, and perhaps the food most associated with the city is the Philly Cheesesteak. This mouthwatering classic is available throughout the city, and can be found in a variety of different establishments. But, the ones we would recommend the most would probably be Jim’s Steaks South St., and Dalessandro’s Steaks. Visit one of these local joints, and sample your very own Philly classic – it’s a true taste of Pennsylvania.

Philadelphia is a city so full of opportunity, adventure, and excitement, and the ideal place to catch some of the most iconic emblems of America. There is a wealth of great things to do here, and we think you should have no problems coming up with something engaging and fun to do. These are just a few of the key experiences you need to have if you’re serious about enjoying Philadelphia, and everything it has to offer.

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Why You Should Be Enjoying Champagne With Food

A bottle of champagne may pop every two seconds somewhere in the world, but if enduring assumptions about how and when it should be consumed are any indication, they are likely celebratory pours. In his new book Champagne: The Essential Guide to the Wines, Producers, and Terroir of the Iconic Region, author and ChampagneGuide.net founder Peter Liem writes that the result of marketing Champagne by brand rather than by region over the past century has brought the heritage product worldwide success but also “de-emphasized the concept of Champagne as a wine, marking it more as a beverage for celebrations or special events, or an aperitif–with ‘real’ wines reserved for the dinner table.”

Add to that the wine’s inextricable association with royalty and celebrity, a link dating as far back as 496 AD, when King Clovis converted to Christianity in Reims, and you have an image that’s difficult to bend. Think of the Emperor Napol?on, who is rumored to have been the first to saber a bottle while riding astride his horse.

“It’s always bothered me that Champagne is situated between Alsace and Burgundy, two regions where people come to talk about terroirs and great wines,” says Anne Malassagne, the fourth-generation co-owner of AR Lenoble Champagne, an independent and family-owned producer. “But when people come to Champagne, they ask about bubbles, luxury, and celebrities instead.” The emerging prominence of grower Champagnes–sparkling wines produced by the same estate that owns the vineyards–has sparked a movement that emphasizes viticulture and terroir in Champagne production. That’s a good start, but the discussion around it remains niche and largely confined to the wine industry, unlikely to reach the average Champagne consumer.

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Still, there’s room to shift the context for drinking it. Even Armand de Brignac, one of the industry’s priciest brands (acquired by Jay-Z in 2014), is focused on diversifying its audience beyond nightclubs and VIP settings. “It’s not about taking away the element of celebration but expanding perception beyond special occasions,” explains Bernadette Knight, the company’s CMO. One simple way to do that is by encouraging its Champagnes be served in a white-wine glass. “It’s easier to get the nose in the glass and allows drinkers to explore the notes and characters the way they would with a still wine,” adds Knight.

Actively engaging that shift in perception has led many producers to direct their attention toward experiences that highlight the pairing possibilities with a full meal, from low-key picnics to gastronomic tasting menus.

AR Lenoble recently inaugurated a professional tasting room and state-of-the-art kitchen in its Damery headquarters, where cooking ateliers (by appointment only) demonstrate firsthand that simple really is best (in other words, roasted chicken absolutely does go down better with a glass of AR Lenoble Brut Intense). Come spring, the producer will be offering Champenois lunches in a historic cabin that sits at the heart of its vines in Bisseuil.

Armand de Brignac paired with a menu by Michelin-starred chef Arnaud Lallement.Courtesy of Juillet Jerusalmi For Champagne Armand de Brignac

On the high end of the spectrum, Armand de Brignac has launched an exclusive pairing menu with triple-Michelin-starred chef Arnaud Lallement at L’Assiette Champenoise, his five-star Relais & Ch?teaux hotel near Reims–the only culinary experience in the world (500 euros per person) to offer each of the house’s five prestige cuv?es in one place.

The initiated know that Champagne is first and foremost a grand wine, but combining it with exceptional meals, both high and low, creates an association that has the power to take it beyond the hoary image of a rarefied party accessory for a broader base. Because the inherent sexiness of les grandes maisons has worn thin, says AR Lenoble’s Malassagne, and the discourse around Champagne, like everything we consume today, requires substance: “It’s not enticing anymore. People want to talk about wine, about values, and what is sincere.” Let’s raise a glass to that.

A version of this article appears in the Feb. 1, 2018 issue of Fortune with the headline “Champagne Beyond the Bubbles.” We’ve included affiliate links in this article. Click here to learn what those are.

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Enjoying Bermuda

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Bermuda is a British island territory sitting pretty in the North Atlantic Ocean. It’s a destination that has proven popular with beach bums over the years and continues to attract visitors from across the world. With a wonderful maritime history and the perfect blend of British and American culture, Bermuda is an island calling out to you across the ocean waves.

It’s the ultimate place to lounge on a stunning, serene beach, or to go for a round of golf on the amazing links. There is a rare combination of experiences open to you here, and that’s the great appeal of Bermuda as a nation. If you want to enjoy a slice of life exploring Bermuda, you need to make sure you check out these wonderful experiences.

Head to Horseshoe Bay Beach

Horseshoe Bay Beach is one of the most famous and photographed beaches in the world. This is a true gem, and one of the top tourist attractions in Bermuda. The crisp sand is soft and warm, and the water is refreshing – you may want to avoid it from September to May as it can get pretty cold. The beach is the perfect spot for a romantic stroll at any time of the year, and the pink sand is a cool and quirky feature. If you want to avoid crowds, try to get here as early as you possibly can.

Check out the Royal Naval Dockyard

Bermuda has made most of its commerce and tourism from being a port, crucial for trade with other nations. And the Royal Naval Dockyard is a stunning and culturally important part of the country, not to mention a break from the beaches. Also, importantly, the place used to be the base of the Royal Navy but is now a cruise-ship dock and popular tourist site. There are plenty of attractions here, and it’s important to check them out – not to mention the great restaurants where you can have a delicious local meal.

Crystal & Fantasy Caves

Imagine being one of the two boys who, in 1907, accidentally discovered these jaw-dropping caves! Filled with all manner of staggering crystal formations, the caves have become one of the principal attractions of Bermuda, and for good reason. The 55-foot deep lake is also a wonderful attraction in the deep of the caves, and this provides you with an experience unlike any you’ve ever had before. You can make your way through these magical caves using the purpose-built bridges, and enjoy an experience that is completely unique and special.

Dolphin Quest

When you come somewhere like Bermuda, you need to make sure you make the most of everything. So many of the attractions involve being in the water, but this is surely the most enjoyable? The dolphin activity and training center is located within the complex at the Royal Naval Dockyard. So you can combine two incredible experiences in one, and enjoy this wonderful dolphin center. Aside from watching the dolphins perform stunts, there is also the opportunity to feed them as well.

Bermuda has so much to enjoy if you are a curious traveler, especially one who loves the ocean and the natural world. You can’t come to somewhere like Bermuda, and not want to make the most of the stunning natural beauty around every corner. If you want an unforgettable vacation experience, we would definitely suggest booking a trip to Bermuda as soon as you can.

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Hoda Kotb Feels ‘Guilty’ About Enjoying the Sleep She Gets When Away from Daughter Haley Joy

Hoda Kotb is missing her 3-month-old daughter Haley Joy while she’s on the road — but admits there are some perks.

The Today host spent time in Nashville, Tennessee, this week for 2017 CMT Music Awards, taking her away from the baby girl she welcomed through adoption in February.

“We went away for one night when we were in Bermuda for a shoot there, so this is my second time away,” Kotb, 52, told E! News. “It is a little weird I have to say.”

Her cohost Kathie Lee Gifford was quick to remind her of the plus side: “But you do get a good night’s sleep!”

“You finally sleep, and it’s weird,” Kotb agreed. “I feel a little guilty saying that.”

“She is working on fumes and doing such an awesome job,” Gifford said. “I’m really proud of you, Hoda Woman — Hoda Mama now!”

While announcing the performance of the year category, Kotb raised a glass of red wine and said, “Here’s to my baby.”

Want all the latest pregnancy and birth announcements, plus celebrity mom blogs? Click here to get those and more in the PEOPLE Babies newsletter.

Kotb recently celebrated her four-year anniversary with her boyfriend Joel Schiffman, marking the occasion with a sweet photo of the two cuddling their daughter at the beach.

“Joel and I celebrated four years,” Hoda explained. “Life flies by. It’s so funny because you spend so much of your life wondering, ‘When is it going to happen?’ If ever. Sometimes in my life, I thought it was already happening — like the most that could ever happen was happening. I was happy and grateful, and then this happened.”

“It just reminded me that work is work, and life is life,” she added.

WATCH: Surprise! Hoda Kotb Reveals She’s Adopted Daughter Haley Joy: ‘She Is the Love of My Life’

Kotb moved in with financier Schiffman last fall — at which point she broached the idea of adopting together.

“I was afraid to even say it out loud, because then it felt so real,” Kotb told PEOPLE in March shortly after revealing her exciting adoption news.

“I said, “Think about it for a day or a week or whatever,’ ” she explained. “And he said, ‘I don’t need a day. Let’s get this journey going.’ At that point I blubbered like a baby. It was like the dam burst.”

Kotb worked with a licensed New York adoption agency and to simplify the process, she left Schiffman’s name off — though she insists “Haley will call him Dad.” Within a matter of months, she finalized the adoption of baby Haley, who was born on Valentine’s Day.


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