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The Royal Mail Hotel is changing
28.03.2017

Executive chef Robin Wickens has a stronger influence at the Royal Mail Hotel's upcoming restaurant, slated to open later this year.

Adventuring along America's north-west rivers
28.03.2017

The rivers of America's north-west running through Washington state and Oregon form the arteries of epic landscapes and bold discovery routes. Emma Sloley follows in the wake of Lewis and Clark.

The World's Best sommeliers are coming to Australia
28.03.2017

For the first time, the world's top international sommeliers will take part in the World's 50 Best Awards too.

Seven Italian dishes that shaped fine dining in the 2000s
28.03.2017

Italian food in the restaurants of Australia blossomed into maturity in the new millennium, as the work of these trailblazers shows – dazzling and diverse, a successful balance between adaptation and tradition.

Steam ovens: a guide
27.03.2017

Billed as the faster, cleaner way to cook, are these on-trend ovens all they’re cracked up to be? We take a close look at their rising popularity, USP versus the traditional convection cooker and how each type rates in terms of form, function, and above all, flavour in this buyer’s guide.

Our chocolate issue is out now
27.03.2017

Our April issue is out now. In his editor's letter, Pat Nourse walks you through what to expect.

Roast pork with Nelly Robinson
27.03.2017

Nelly Robinson of Sydney's nel. restaurant talks us through his favourite roasting joints, tips for crisp roast potatoes and why, when it comes to pork, slow and steady always wins the race.

Water carafes
24.03.2017

More than mere vessels, these pieces bring a cool breeze of style from the fridge to the table.

Flour and Stone Recipes

Baker extraordinaire Nadine Ingram of Sydney's Flour and Stone cooks up a sweet storm for Easter, including the much loved bakery's greatest hit.

Fast autumn dinners

Autumn weather signals the arrival of soups, broths, roasts and more hearty meals.

Roasted cauliflower salad with yoghurt dressing and almonds

The cauliflower is roasted until it starts to caramelise, which adds extra depth of flavour to this winning salad. Serve it warm or at room temperature.

1980s recipes

Australia saw some bold moves in the ’80s, and we’re not just talking hairstyles. Greater cultural references started peppering the menus of our restaurants, and home-grown ingredients won a new appreciation. The dining scene was coming of age and a new band of pioneers led the charge.

New cruises 2017

Cue the Champagne.

All Star Yum Cha

What happens the morning after the World’s 50 Best Restaurants awards? We treat the chefs to a world-beating yum cha session, as Dani Valent discovers.

Melbournes finest meet Worlds Best

Leading chefs descend on Melbourne in April for The World’s 50 Best Restaurants. We asked local hospitality folk who they’d abduct for the day and where they’d take them to show off their city. There may be coffee, there may be culture, but in the end it’s cocktails.

Savoury tarts

Will your next baking project be a flaky puff pastry with pumpkin, goat's curd and thyme, or a classic bacon and Stilton tart? As autumn settles in, we're ticking these off one by one.

Paloma Picasso's Marrakech

Paloma Picasso in Marrakech

Paloma Picasso in Marrakech

Jewellery designer Paloma Picasso fell so in love with "the landscape, the colours… the designs and the beautiful blue skies" of Marrakech that in 2006, she and her husband Dr Eric Thévenet decided to call it home. Today, the city plays a vital role in her work, with the olive groves around her house serving as inspiration for some of her designs for Tiffany & Co. We caught up with Ms Picasso to find out where she eats, shops and passes the time in the ochre city.

Describe a typical day in Marrakech for you.
The wonderful thing about our daily life here is it's hard to predict what's going to happen. There really is no such thing as a typical day. Every day is different: we swim, we cycle, we play tennis, good friends may pay a visit. The favourable weather helps keep options open.

What would you recommend every visitor to Marrakech must do?
Of course, one must experience the medina for its ancient charm and frenetic energy. Visit the ironmongers in the souk to experience traditional craftsmanship. The colourful mountains of spices and olives that line the souk are also very beautiful, not to mention the delicious dates, figs and numerous carts selling fresh orange juice. For centuries the souk has been the meeting place for Marrakechi - it's the magical spirit of Marrakech. Another fascinating place is the Majorelle Gardens (Rue Yves Saint Laurent), designed by French artist Jacques Majorelle. He came here in the early 1900s and was spellbound [by Marrakech]. His fascination with the city, and other places in Morocco, is reflected in the colourful landscapes he painted. [The gardens] were lovingly restored by Yves Saint Laurent and Pierre Bergé.

Where are your favourite places to eat?
Eric and I occasionally go into the medina for tea at La Terrasse des Épices or go to the Beldi Country Club on the road to the dam for a change of scenery.

How about special occasions - where do you celebrate?
We'd normally go to Riad Madani. This is owned by our dear friends and it's a smaller, more boutique hotel than some of the famous larger ones, but no less elegant or charming. Here, we have delicious food surrounded by beautiful décor and artefacts from around the world.

Where do you shop in the city?
The medina offers wonderful shopping experiences if one can avoid the tourist traps. Mustapha Blaoui (142-144 Bab Doukkala, Marrakech) is definitely a favourite of ours for décor and also just for the experience of being in what appears like Aladdin's Cave. In the Gueliz we rely on Scènes de Lin for luxurious special orders of linen and tabletops.

Are there places worth investigating in the countryside?
Absolutely. A daytrip to the quaint town of Ouirgane in the Atlas Mountains is a nice way to enjoy the countryside. Visiting the Atlas Mountains will also give you an opportunity to experience the Berber culture. Another idea would be to go to Essaouira on the coast. That's the fabulous thing about Marrakech - within a couple of hours' drive you can either be high in the mountains or down by the sea.

Where's the best place to stay?
The iconic La Mamounia remains a classic in the great tradition of old-world luxury hotels, and it's nicely located near the medina. There's also the elegant Royal Mansour Hotel.

In what way does the city influence you creatively?
My Zellige jewellery range was directly inspired by the geometric shapes and intricate patterns that can be found throughout Marrakech. One can find the patterns, for example, in the tiles adorning fountains or in the beaded tassels seen throughout the medina. I've used these lattices, patterns and shapes to design medallion and tassel pendants, bangles, rings and earrings. Another one of my collections, Villa Paloma, was also inspired in many ways by Marrakech and the Moroccan countryside, particularly by the lush flowers and vegetation, fountains, terraces and the golden light of a desert oasis. The garden is a gateway to nature. I wanted to create jewellery that captures the infinite beauty and diversity of the area's gardens.

What is the inspiration for the Olive Leaf collection?
The [Olive Leaf] collection is inspired by the olive branch as a symbol of peace, abundance and longevity. It captures elements from the olive groves surrounding my home in Morocco - a place of serenity - and also represents a link to my name. "Paloma" means dove in Spanish, and most people are familiar with the symbolic image of the dove carrying an olive branch as a peace offering. The jewellery I've created pays tribute to both the dove's noble mission and gardens as a refuge of peace and tranquility.


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