Edificio Metrópolis, Madrid, Spain
One of the most famous buildings in Madrid.
The Edificio Metrópolis is one of the most famous buildings in Madrid. The eye-catching structure, decorated with numerous sculptures, is especially beautiful at night, when it is spectacularly illuminated. The Edificio Metrópolis was constructed between 1907 and 1911 after a design by the French architects Jules and Raymond Février for the insurance company Unión y el Fenix Español. It was built at a prime corner site near the then planned Gran Via (Great Road). The architects used the typically French Beaux-Arts style in their design, with a lavish façade decorated with statues, pillars and ornaments. The statues resting on Corinthian twin columns are allegorical representations of Trade, Agriculture, Industry and Mining. Above these statues, the façade is decorated with festoons and small foliated windows. The building is crowned with a magnificent black dome, accentuated with gilded ornaments. The dome is topped by a statue of the winged goddess Victoria, designed by the Spanish sculptor Federico Coullaut-Valera Mendigutia. It replaced the original bronze statue of the mythological figures of Phoenix and Ganymedes, the symbol of Unión y el Fenix Español. When Metrópolis Seguros, a rival insurance company, purchased the building in 1972, the original owners decided to take the statue with them to their new headquarters. At the time the move was controversial, since the statue was a familiar icon in the skyline of Madrid. But after Metrópolis installed the current statue in 1975, it soon became just as familiar.
Casa de Campo, Madrid, Spain
Casa de Campo - lungs of Madrid
Sometimes called the ‘lungs of Madrid’, this 17 sq km stand of greenery stretches west of the Río Manzanares. There are prettier and more central parks in Madrid but such is its scope that there are plenty of reasons to visit. And visit the madrileños do, nearly half a million of them every weekend, celebrating the fact that the short-lived Republican government of the 1930s opened the park to the public (it was previously the exclusive domain of royalty). For city-bound madrileños with neither the time nor the inclination to go further afield, it has become the closest they get to nature, despite the fact that cyclists, walkers and picnickers overwhelm the byways and trails that criss-cross the park. There are tennis courts and a swimming pool, as well as the Zoo Aquarium de Madrid and the Parque de Atracciones . At Casa de Campo’s southern end, restaurants specialise in wedding receptions, ensuring plenty of bridal parties roam the grounds in search of an unoccupied patch of greenery where they can take photos. Also in the park, the Andalucian-style ranch known as Batán is used to house the bulls destined to do bloody battle in the Fiestas de San Isidro Labrador. Although it’s largely for the better, something has definitely been lost from the days before 2003 when unspoken intrigues surrounded the small artificial lake , where several lakeside terrazas and eateries were frequented by an odd combination of day trippers, working girls and clients. By night, prostitutes jockeyed for position while punters kept their places around the lakeside chiringuitos (open-air bars or kiosks) as though nothing out of the ordinary was happening. The traffic in the middle of the night here was akin to rush hour in the city centre. The police shut this scene down and, thankfully, there are no more louche traffic jams, at least on weekends. by lonelyplanet.com
Cathédrale Notre-Dame, Strasbourg, France
The world's tallest building from 1647 to 1874
Considered the world's tallest building from 1647 to 1874, and still the sixth tallest church today, this richly decorated gothic masterpiece of pink-tinted Vosges sandstone stands proud with its steeple reaching 142m (466ft) which is visible far across the plains of Alsace. Highlights include the intricate west facade with its three portals; the Eglise and Synagogue statues (the originals are located at the Musée de l'Oeuvre Notre-Dame); and the remarkable Renaissance Horloge Astronomique (Astronomical Clock), one of the world's largest clocks, which chimes at 1230 daily, as the Apostles parade before Jesus. The outstanding views of the city from the top platform are well worth the 330 arduous steps. by worldtravelguide.net
Strasbourg, capital of the region of Alsace
Set on the Franco-German border, the city of Strasbourg, capital of the region of Alsace, has seen its history and culture shaped by both countries throughout the centuries. The result is a city characterised by a medieval and village-like charm intertwined with a dynamic contemporary twist and international scene. The legacy of Alsace’s complex history sets it apart from the rest of France and has created a mix of Franco-German influences on the region’s architecture, identity and cultural scene, including language and food. Despite the hostilities that have mired its history, the region now thrives economically, socially and politically and benefits from strong collaborative ties with Germany. The Jardin des Deux Rives (Garden of Two Banks) and its bridge over the river Rhine opened in 2009 and is a strong testimony of this Franco-German friendship. Culturally, Strasbourg stands proud with its own Opera House, National Theatre (TNS), Conservatory of Music and various music and cinema festivals. In addition to official line-ups, frequent live music events are organised throughout the town. Academically, Strasbourg boasts one of the largest universities in France, with over 42,000 students, from European and international horizons, and many research institutes. Environmentally friendly, the city caters for cyclists and pedestrians alike and has a large network of public transport, including a tramline and a shared public bicycle scheme (Vél’hop). This comprehensive networks extends beyond the urban areas and Strasbourg is connected via the TGV (high speed train) to numerous national and European cities. The Grande Ile (Big Island), in the midst of the River Ill, forms the heart of the city, and is alive throughout the year, from the warm summer months when tourists and locals take to the terraces for some regional wines and beers to wintery December when numerous merchants sell mulled wines and handicrafts at Christmas markets dotting the area. Grande Ille is also a prime example of a fortified medieval town – relics of times past pepper the urban landscape and are worth keeping an eye open for. The Place Kléber (the main centre square), the Place Gutenberg – named after the 15th-century inventor of the printing press – and the Aubette (former military building turned leisure centre) cluster to form the city centre and are all within walking distance of each other. The area was granted UNESCO World Heritage status in 1988. Grandiosely prominent in the Vieille Ville (Old Town) is Strasbourg’s greatest landmark: the Cathédrale Notre-Dame, renowned for its pink sandstone facade, unique tower and gothic style. Around the cathedral, an impressive array of museums, cafés and restaurants accommodate tourists and locals alike. Stunningly picturesque, la Petite France (southwest of the Grande Ile) is Strasbourg's medieval quarter and one of the most touristic areas. With its bridges and canals, half-timbered houses and narrow streets, the neighbourhood’s village feel and charm contrast sharply with the modern and clean-cut lines of the European institutions. In the northeast of the city, the Council of Europe, European Court of Human Rights and the European Parliament line the horizon and re-affirm Strasbourg’s place and pivotal role as the capital of Europe and guardian of human rights. by worldtravelguide.net
New York Public Library, New York, United States
New York Public Library
The New York Public Library (NYPL) is a public library system in New York City. With nearly 53 million items, the New York Public Library is the second largest public library in the United States (and third largest in the world), behind only the Library of Congress. It is an independently managed, nonprofit corporation operating with both private and public financing. The library has branches in the boroughs of Manhattan, The Bronx and Staten Island and it has affiliations with academic and professional libraries in the metropolitan area of New York State. The City of New York's other two boroughs, Brooklyn and Queens, are served by the Brooklyn Public Library and the Queens Borough Public Library, respectively. The branch libraries are open to the general public and consist of research libraries and circulating libraries. The library originated in the 19th century, and its founding and roots are the amalgamation of grass-roots libraries, social libraries of bibliophiles and the wealthy, and from philanthropy of the wealthiest Americans of their age.
Lincoln Center, New York, United States
Lincoln Center (Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts) serves three primary roles: world’s leading presenter of superb artistic programming, national leader in arts and education and community relations, and manager of the Lincoln Center campus. In addition, LCPA led a $1.2 billion campus renovation, completed in October 2012.
Broadway, New York, United States
Broadway is famous as the pinnacle of the American theatre industry. This district is known for its abundance of theatres. Many of theatres have been in use for over 50 years! The Majestic Theatre is one of the largest Broadway theatres in New York City, with 1607 seats at its 245 West 44th Street location. Herbert J. Krapp designed the theatre in 1927 for Irwin Chanin, but was soon taken over by the present owners, the Shuberts, during the Great Depression. The interior of the theatre is a beautiful neo-classical design and has remained one of Broadway's premier musical houses. It currently hosts the longest running show on Broadway, ‘The Phantom of the Opera’. The Great White Way is the nickname given to the section of Broadway that runs through the theatre district. Nearly a mile of Broadway was illuminated in 1880 by Brush arc lamps, making it among the first electrically lighted streets in the United States. Other notable theatres in the area include The Belasco, The Imperial, The Palace, The Shubert, the Ambassador and the Winter Garden. The Winter Garden was the home of the musical ‘Cats’ for 18 years. One of the most influential people to the theatre district is George M. Cohan. Born in 1878, the multi-talented Cohan was an entertainer, playwright, composer, lyricist, actor, singer, dancer and producer. Known as 'the man who owned Broadway' in the decade before World War I, he is said to be the father of the American musical comedy. His statue resides right across the street from the Times Square Alliance Information Center. Broadway is a must see attraction for tourists and a local treasure for the native New Yorker. Whichever you are, be sure to make time to see this historic street, which runs through the entire island of Manhattan.
Маде́йра (порт. madeira — древесина) — автономный регион Португалии, расположенный на одноимённом архипелаге в северной части Атлантического океана, приблизительно в 1000 км к юго-западу от Португалии и в 500 км к западу от африканского побережья. Мадейра входит в ЕС в качестве особой отдалённой территории. Архипелаг состоит из двух населённых островов: Мадейра и Порту-Санту, и двух отдалённых групп мелких ненаселённых островов, служащих пристанищем морским птицам — острова Десерташ и острова Селваженш. Мадейра была открыта португальскими моряками примерно между 1418 и 1420 годами. Открытие острова, инициированное Генрихом Мореплавателем, считается одним из первых открытий века Великих географических открытий. Остров был дружески оккупирован Британией во время наполеоновских войн с 1807 года по 1814, когда он был возвращён во владение Португалии. Остров является популярным круглогодичным местом отдыха, отличающимся известным вином Мадера, цветами, новогодними празднованиями с замечательным фейерверком, самым большим в мире по версии Книги Гиннесса, ну и конечно же, не в последнюю очередь, благодаря исключительному климату (температуры в пределах от 16 °C до 25 °C). Порт острова в Фуншале имеет большое значение благодаря большому количеству заходящих коммерческих и пассажирских судов и тому, что является главной остановкой круизных маршрутов из Европы на Карибские острова.
Hitachi Seaside Park, Hitachi-Naka, Japan
Covering an area of 190 hectares, the park features blooming flowers around the year.The park has become known for its baby blue-eyes flowers, with the blooming of 4.5 million of the translucent-petaled blue flowers in the spring drawing tourists. In addition to the annual "Nemophila Harmony", the park features a million daffodils, 170 varieties of tulips, and many other flowers. The park includes cycling trails and a small amusement park with a Ferris wheel.
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