The Monocle Minute

The week ahead, opportunities and observations
Saturday 26 September 2015

Image: Piet Theisohn

Greek revival

Monocle was in Athens for a hotel conference earlier this week and noticed that there was no shortage of traffic in bars and cafés in Kolonaki and plenty of bearded men booking in for €30 shaves at better barbershops (we know this because our editor in chief was on the hunt for a whisker trim). While the world’s media has been busy showing a capital in crisis, Monocle has been spotting opportunity. So has Zeit Magazin, with a portfolio of Athenian creatives and entrepreneurs in its new international edition that asks, “Is Athens the new Berlin?” We’d say yes and with a much more agreeable climate. If you go, a few brands are worth checking out: Hommer for beard grooming products, Zeus + Dione for womenswear and Yannis Sergakis’s shop for delightful Athenian jewellery.

Image: Tina Hillier

Design capital

This week the great, the good and the curious of the design world have decamped to the UK capital for the London Design Festival. Spread across a bewildering array of venues from the Victoria and Albert Museum to Somerset House, the fair is an unwieldy and confusing beast. Our advice? This weekend, head to Tent London and Super Brands London at the Old Truman Brewery in east London. This exhibition ticks all the boxes. It’s conceived on a human scale, has a varied and exciting roster of talent (100% Norway, Ben Sutton ceramics and Design & Crafts Council of Ireland are highlights) and is close to good coffee shops when you’ve had your fill. Designing a manageable fair, it seems, remains a big ask.

Image: David Sundberg/Esto

Roll up, roll out!

New Yorkers riding the rails this weekend may end up somewhere they’ve never visited before. Hudson Yards is a gleaming new subway station that just opened. The bright interior is designed by Dattner Architects and includes an impressive mosaic dome. The station’s not just a good piece of design-minded investment: there’s a commitment to beauty that hasn’t been seen in US transportation for decades. And many New Yorkers think it’s about time: in the 26 years since the city opened its last subway station, London has cut the ribbon on eight and Paris on 11.

Toronto: a music city

Anyone who is heading to Israeli-Ethiopian singer Ester Rada’s show at Toronto’s Small World Music Festival this Sunday might think the city’s music scene has come of age. Toronto has always had homegrown musical talent but it’s only lately that it has really started to find its rhythm: there’s the bittersweet pop of Alvvays, pastoral folk from The Weather Station and superstar Drake. Canada’s largest city has also played host to increasingly headline-grabbing music festivals this summer, such as Field Trip, NXNE and Bestival’s first foray overseas from its home base in the UK. The city’s healthy ticket sales could make it an attractive choice for other global event brands looking to follow the crowd with a festival debut.

From Monocle 24

The Menu: Pisco in Peru

The global surge in the popularity of pisco is also visible in the drink’s home country of Peru. We take a trip for a sip to Lima.

From Monocle Films

Top five from the Culture Desk

Robert Bound puts the spotlight on five things from the field of culture that are worthy of an encore. Sit back for cool museums and steamy cinema experiences from around the world.

Loading...

/

15

15

Live

00:00 01:00