A 16th-Century Finca Gets the Richard Branson Treatment, and Other News

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A 16th-Century Finca Gets the Richard Branson Treatment

In the heart of the Tramuntana Mountains of Mallorca, Virgin Limited Edition’s Son Bunyola Hotel opens its doors, breathing new life into a 16th-century finca on a 1,300-acre estate teeming with almond and olive groves, vines, and citrus fruit trees. The property, a love letter to the Balearic Island from Richard Branson, renovated by local architect GRAS Reynés Arquitectos, seamlessly merges past and present, featuring a meticulously restored main building and several annexes, including the Tafona, where the historic olive press was located and now harbors two showcase suites. 

Local designer Rialto Living infused each of the 26 rooms and suites with a touch of Mallorcan charm, while the hotel’s two restaurants serve Mediterranean and tapas dishes under the guidance of executive chef Samuel G. Galdón. The hotel’s wellness program takes advantage of its natural surroundings, with outdoor yoga sessions, historical walks around the UNESCO World Heritage site, and a picturesque swimming pool overlooking the idyllic rock formations of the Foradada peninsula. —Nate Storey

Models rose through the trapdoors on the floor at Dior’s latest menswear runway show.

Dior showcased its Spring Summer 2024 menswear collection in a theatrical way. The show, titled “From New Look to New Wave,” featured a purpose-built gray box structure designed by Villa Eugénie, complete with gridded metal floor and tiered seating. Models rose individually from the floor through trap doors, creating a “mechanical garden” effect. The collection paid homage to Dior’s past while incorporating bright colors, embellishments, and floral-inspired hats. It also marked creative director Kim Jones’ five-year anniversary with the fashion house.

Allbirds unveils what it bills to be the first-ever carbon-neutral shoe to mixed reviews.

Allbirds has unveiled its newest creation, the M0.0nshot, which it claims to be the world’s first carbon-neutral shoe when it drops next spring. Known for its eco-friendly footwear, the company was aiming for the sneaker to help jumpstart a comeback, but so far the response has been underwhelming. Despite online commenters describing the shoe as strange and unattractive, Allbirds emphasizes that every aspect of the shoe serves a purpose in achieving its net-zero carbon rating, including a bioplastic badge that captures and stores methane.

“Sleeping Figure” by Matt Johnson. Image courtesy of Desert X

Matt Johnson’s giant sculpture of a sleeping figure heads to a new home in Marfa.

Marfa will soon be home to a new permanent outdoor sculpture, Sleeping Figure (2023) by Matt Johnson. Originally showcased at the Desert X in the Coachella Valley, the colossal artwork, made of decommissioned shipping containers, will be permanently installed on a five-acre site near Marfa starting in September. Resembling a recumbent body, the sculpture drew significant attention at its debut and will now become part of a sculpture park envisioned by curator Michael Phelan, who aims to uphold the legacy of Land Art.

Skims, Kim Kardashian’s shapewear brand, plans to open physical stores next year.

Skims, Kim Kardashian’s shapewear brand, plans to expand its retail presence by opening its first permanent stores in Los Angeles and New York next year. The brand, which has experienced significant growth and success, has expanded its product offerings beyond shapewear, delving into categories such as pajamas, swimwear, and soon, a men’s line. Skims anticipates strong sales growth and is considering international expansion, targeting global cities and eyeing an IPO on the horizon.

A group of climate activists protests recent charges against their colleagues at the Met.  

Earlier this week, activists gathered at the Metropolitan Museum of Art to protest charges against Joanna Smith and Tim Martin, members of the climate group Declare Emergency. The activists, representing Extinction Rebellion and Rise & Resist, demonstrated around an Edgar Degas sculpture, covering their mouths with tape displaying words related to climate issues. Smith and Martin face federal conspiracy charges after splattering paint on a Degas sculpture at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C. Activists argue the charges against them are excessively harsh and part of a strategy to intimidate climate activists.

Image courtesy Archaeological Park of Pompeii

Today’s attractive distractions:

Scooter, a sparsely hairy Chinese crested, is crowned the world’s ugliest dog.

One doctor’s ongoing quest toward penis enlargement seems to be backfiring.

Before it burned down, this bathhouse fostered New York City’s gay community.

In Pompeii, a newly unearthed fresco depicts pizza’s 2,000-year-old ancestor.

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