Travel news: Brazilian boutique hotels and fashion exhibitions in Paris

Plus stargazing parks in Canada, cheap New York flights, pet sunglasses and Open House news about Downing Street


Around 60 small and sexy Brazilian hotels have been collected for a new website,, with luxury retreats such as Ponta dos Ganchos near Florianopolis, and cheaper pousadas. All have been reviewed by the website editors (who say only 60% of those they visit make the grade) and can be booked online.

What’s new?

Stargazing parks
Several Dark Sky Reserves, which give great access to starry skies, are now being created each year. The world’s largest, newly designated last month, is Wood Buffalo national park in northern Alberta, Canada. It’s home to wood bison, whooping crane and the world’s longest beaver dam; and at night, visitors might spot bats, nighthawks and owls, and see the aurora borealis. In the same state, Jasper national park hosts the Jasper Dark Sky Festival from 25-27 October, with astronomer-led stargazing and talks by Professor Jaymie Matthews, and Wilfred Buck, a First Nations constellation storyteller.

Paris fashion
The Musée Galliera fashion museum in Paris reopens on 28 September, following an extensive renovation. The relaunch kicks off with an exhibition celebrating the career of designer Azzedine Alaïa, with more than 100 of his coveted garments on show, alongside the museum’s collections, which include clothes belonging to Louis XVII, and costumes worn by Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany’s.
10 avenue Pierre de Serbie, Alaïa exhibition: 28 September-26 January 2014, tickets from €4, under-14s free

Glamp watch

Website has added The Rambleshack in the Scottish Borders, in Coldingham village on the surfy east coast, which features white wooden pods sleeping two from £55 a night

Cheap date

STA Travel has cheap flight deals at the moment, including a return to New York from Heathrow between 1 October and mid-December for £397pp , or flights for students and young people to Bangkok between 10 September and 31 March for £375pp

Screen break

The Berwick Film and Media Arts festival takes place on 25-29 September, and will screen a new film, Dummy Jim. It is about a deaf Scotsman who cycled solo to the Arctic in 1951 … on a budget of £12. Director Matt Hulse was given a rare copy of the book about the trek, I Cycled into the Arctic Circle, which inspired his film.
Watch the trailer at

Travel Trash

For holidaying pets who don’t like getting the sun in their eyes, Doggles offer UV protection and a shatterproof lens. In these sunglasses for furry friends, pooches can stick their head out of the car window with abandon, sunbathe, or take to the slopes without fear of snow-blindness.
In pink, leopard print or sporty styles, from £15,

Where’s hot now?

• Austin, Texas 37C

• Verona, Italy 31C

• Athens, Greece 30C

• Pula, Croatia 28C

• Seville, Spain 27C

Architecture attractions

Open House London, the capital’s annual architecture event, takes place this month, once again highlighting the city’s greatest architectural achievements, with 700 buildings open to the public for one weekend only.

The biggest news at this year’s event, on 21-22 September, is the inclusion of 10 Downing Street, though entry is severely restricted and awarded through a ballot (as is usually the way in that house). The draw is open until 13 September: enter at Ballots are also operating for entry to the Shard, the London Eye and Gray’s Inn.

There will be more than 1,600 guided tours, many led by the visionaries behind London’s iconic buildings, including cutting-edge design and ornate period properties. Highlights include 44 Mount Park Road in Ealing, with its two-storey “magic box” atrium, and Chandos House, the Royal Society of Medicine’s listed Georgian HQ.

Regeneration is a key theme of this year’s event. Tours of the E20 East Village and Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park will offer an insight into the 2012 Olympic legacy. Extra events include a debate on 17 September at the Landscape Institute entitled Is London Building a Sterile City? Apply online at

Celebrated architect Lord Foster said: “Open House has drawn attention to the architectural gems London has to offer, from historic landmarks to private homes.”
• A printed guide to all Open House events is available from © 2013 Guardian News and Media Limited or its affiliated companies. All rights reserved. | Use of this content is subject to our Terms & Conditions | More Feeds

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