Sweet little things at DOKUMO

Are you still looking for something special for Christmas (or for yourself Smiley)?

Today, I visited the little fair DEKUMO. The name consists of the first letters of the words Design (design), Kunst (art), Mode (fashion) – and that’s exactly what you find there.

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DEKUMO is a temporary platform for artists and designers. Most of them have their studios in Stuttgart and many are still one-man enterprises and not huge brands. Thus, you’ll find things at DOKUMO you won’t find anywhere else.

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Looovely stuff! I could have spend a fortune… Smiley Only the fact, that some artists didn’t accept credit cards saved me…

At the end, we discovered the kids corner… and had lot’s of fun there, too Smiley mit geöffnetem Mund

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The DEKUMO is on until tomorrow, Sunday 8th of December. The fair is open until 8pm tonight and tomorrow from 10 am to 6 pm. Entrance fee: 8 Euro for adults, families pay 14 Euro

You find the DEKUMO close to Milaneo Shopping center, U-Bahn-station “Stadtbibliothek (Handwerkskammer)” at:

Kulturniederlassung SÜDWEST
Türlenstraße 2
70191 Stuttgart

 

More information:

DEKUMO 2014 (only in German)

Fluxus – The temporary concept mall

One should think Stuttgart is over satisfied with shopping malls after the Gerber and the Milaneo have opened their gates within the last weeks. However, yesterday evening, at the pre-opening of Fluxus – the temporary concept mall – I met hundreds of people who craved for another, alternative shopping experience.

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You won’t find any of the big, international brands here, but that’s part of the idea. Fluxus consists of 16 shops and Cafés owned by local retailers, designers, artists and, let’s face it, awesome people. Smiley So if you’re looking for something special or a vintage product (yep, there are second hand shops, too) or you need to find an extraordinary present, Fluxus is the place to visit.

It was very crowded at the pre-opening yesterday and due to the public holiday, you weren’t allowed to purchase anything (big bummer by the way – but good for my wallet Zwinkerndes Smiley), so I only got an idea of the different types of shops. Here are some impressions I would like to share with you guys:

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If you like retro fashion or second hand stuff, you will love “Mademoiselle YéYé”…

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… and OBSCÜR:

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One of the shops I will definitely check out again is “Temps”.

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If you’re looking for fun stuff and presents, check out “superjuju”…

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… “Design Kiosk”…

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…and – if the person you want to give the present to is under 15  – “StEYBE für Kinder”:

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And if you’re looking for something really special (for yourself or someone else), why not get a design clock by “Biegert & Funk”?!

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I LOVE those clocks! They have them in all sorts of languages – even Swabian and Swiss German!! Smiley mit geöffnetem Mund

It was a nice but veeery crowded pre-opening event and I am keen on coming back for some real shopping Smiley

More information about:

Fluxus (on facebook)

Mademoiselle YéYé

Obscür

superjuju

STEYBE für Kinder

Biegert & Funk

New shopping center in Stuttgart, No.II:  Milaneo

New shopping center in Stuttgart, No.II: Milaneo

After the opening of the Gerber two weeks ago, Stuttgart celebrated another shopping temple today: The Milaneo.  It is located behind the main station, right next to the public library.

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There was already a crowd of people waiting in front of the entrance when I walked past the shopping center in the morning.

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Of course I was quite curious so I had to visit the Milaneo during my lunch break. There were hundreds of people but it didn’t look that crowded at first sight cause the area is huge.

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But it was way to crowded to have a look into the shops so I just strolled through the center to get a first impression.

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Well, quite fancy. When it comes to the look of the shopping center, I like the shiny Milaneo more than the concrete-chic Gerber. And between the 200 shops there are of course some brands that are new to Stuttgart.

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And right, there’s Primark…

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I’m not a big fan of Primark after all I read on the news within the last weeks. But according to the crowd lining up in front of the shop, waiting to be allowed inside, I’m afraid not many people care that much…

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That brings me to the few people, that weren’t very impressed with the opening of another shopping center in Stuttgart…

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Yep, there were protests against the cheap shops at Milaneo as well.

It was quite an interesting lunch break, I can tell you that much guys. I have to come back in a few days, when things have calmed down a bit, and have a closer look at the shops.

Has anybody been shopping at Milaneo today? What are your favorite shops and which center do you like better, Milaneo or Gerber?  Let me know, I’m curious!

 

More information about:

Milaneo (only in German)

Stuttgart Market Hall celebrates 100. birthday!

Many people name the Market Hall (Markthalle) when you ask them about their most favorite places in Stuttgart. And it is indeed a special place: The art nouveau building with it’s lofty architecture offers a variety of international products and an atmosphere, that reminds you of an oriental bazar. And in January, the Market Hall had turned 100 years old! Reason enough for Moritz and me to pay it a birthday visit this weekend.

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38 stalls offer fresh fruits, vegetables, meat, fish, spices and much, much more on 3500 square meters. The smell and the colors make a visit very enjoyable.

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Mouthwatering, right?

From the gallery on the first floor you’ve got a nice view down to the bustling market…

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… and you find some shops and restaurants:

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If you’re not looking for fresh products but for some souvenirs, check out the stall from Hochland Kaffee. Their roasting facility is located in Stuttgart-Degerloch and the tradition of this company goes back to 1930. I like them not only because of the good quality of their coffee, but also because they offer some very fun, Stuttgart related products:

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Like these boxes with coffee named Stuttgarter Bohnenviertel”(“Stuttgart beans quarter”, which relates to a part of the city with this exact name in the west of Stuttgart), chocolate with bezels, noodles in the shape of bezels and much more. Or Wibele (traditional mini cookies from Stuttgart) and “wine to go”:

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One of my favorites is this set of four chocolates:

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It brings together the best of Stuttgart: The Fernsehturm (television tower), Wibele, Brezel and the Swabian accent (Schogglad, meaning chocolate). Fun! Smiley

Yep, the Markthalle is always worth a visit – and I always have to take at least a tiny piece of deliciousness home with me…

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More information about:

Markthalle Stuttgart (only in German)

Hochland Kaffee (only in German)

Brisbane in one day

A city! After we’ve spent the last two weeks mainly in small towns, we are finally back to a big city: Brisbane! We had one day to spend so what do you do as a decent tourist? Sightseeing and shopping, right! 🙂

We started with the sightseeing:

Our first stop: Brisbane City Hall.

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Quite nice, hum? What I liked about Brisbane was that you found old, historic buildings next to modern skyscrapers, like around Albert Street Uniting Church…

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… or St. Stephen’s Cathedral:

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That reminded me on our trip to Boston, one year ago.

Some more new buildings…

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… and historic ones (around Queens Park):

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When we had seen the city center, we went to the river.

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We followed the Brisbane River down to the Botanic Gardens and paid them a visit, too.

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That looks kind of spooky, right?:

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This guy looked at us with a slightly distrustful eye:

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We were finished with the Botanic Gardens after an hour or so. It was early afternoon and shopping time! 🙂

As a girl from Stuttgart, I liked that Brisbane’s main shopping street is called “Queen Street” – reminded me of our Königstrasse (King Street) back home 🙂

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But actually, our shopping experience was very disappointing. Maybe because all the shops have the spring/summer collection on display and we will come back to the beginning of winter in two weeks. The only thing I bought was this pair of shoes. However, I quite like it though 🙂

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I leave you guys with the view from the Sky Lounge of the Evolution Apartments, the hotel we stayed in.

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More information about:

Brisbane

Brisbane Botanic Gardens

Queen Street Mall

Evolution Apartments

From L.A. to Joshua Tree NP – hiking included!

It’s only the second day of our holiday but it feel’s like we’ve been on the road for a week already – in a positive sense! 🙂

After a very relaxed flight with Swiss Air from Stuttgart via Zürich to L.A. (OF COURSE they offer you chocolates when flying with Swiss 😉 ),

Swiss Air chocolate

we arrived in the US on thursday evening.

We picked up our rental car (a Volkswagen Jetta – what else would you expect from two Germans 😀 ) and stayed in a hotel close to the airport for the first night. The next day, we woke up in the middle of the night – bloody jet lag – and had to wait until 6:30 am to have breakfast. We left L.A. around 7:30 am and headed towards our first stop: the Desert Hill Premium Outlet! Well, why not start your holiday with an extended shopping experience, I ask you! 😀

Desert Hill Premium Outlet

When we arrived at 10 am, they had just opened the place so the Desert Outlet was… deserted. Which meant we had most of the shops all to ourselves for the first hour or so!

Deserted Desert Hill Premium Outlet

Three hours and the one or other Dollar later, we hit the road again and drove towards Twentynine Palms, close to Joshua Tree National Park. It was early afternoon when we arrived after a 1-hour drive and as we were keen to see something of the beauty of the NP, we decided to do our first hike: the trail to the 49 Palms Oasis.

This hike is 3 miles in total and leads you to an oasis in a valley. You have to climb up a hill at the beginning before descending towards the oasis.

Starting the trail towards the 49 Palms Oasis

Panorama view

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Another viewpoint

Still climbing

I don’t know whether it was the lack of sleep, the still very hot afternoon sun or me just being not very fit, but climbing up the first hill was really hard work. You can imagine how glad I was when we reached the top and were able to enjoy not only the view over the town of 29 Palms…

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but also to spot the 49 Palms Oasis for the first time:

49 Palms Oasis

Descending was very easy and we found the oasis nearly empty of other tourists.

Descending to the 49 Palms Oasis

We sat down in the shade and enjoyed the view.

View from the 49 Palms Oasis

Same view, slightly different perspective

After this little break, we felt refreshed and were ready for the way back. The sun was setting which meant a little drop of temperature plus beautiful light (which did not only make the plants stand out of their surrounding).

Red cactus

White cactus

The last mile flew by and we arrived at our car with the last rays of bright daylight.

Way back from 49 Palms Oasis

We were very happy with our choice of trail for the first hike this holiday.

This morning, we got up early again in order to avoid hiking in Joshua Tree NP at noon. As it was only 8 am when we entered the park, not many other tourists were around and we had the landscape and the street all to ourselves…

Lonely street

Beautiful landscape of Joshua Tree National Park

Click on picture to enlarge

Lonely Joshua Tree

And of course, it’s also easier to spot some wildlife, when not hundreds of other people have trampled along the same track before you…

Lizzard in Joshua Tree NP

Tiny snake in Joshua Tree NP

We decided to do the mountain climbing in the morning, when the sun has not too much power. So “Ryan Mountain” was our first destination.

Ryan Mountain Trail

The way up to the mountain top is 1.5 miles long. It was nice doing this hike in the morning as it was only 70 degrees (for all Europeans: DON’T WORRY!! I am talking Fahrenheit here! 70 degrees Fahrenheit are about 21 degrees Celsius 😉 ) and no other hikers were around on our way up… Hikers! I didn’t say runners, did I?!

Jogger on his way up to Ryan Mountain

I really hope that this guy is one of the Marines that are positioned on a training area next to 29 palms, and no regular businessman… Otherwise I would feel really deranged… 😉

The way up leads you along some beautiful rocks and offers great views.

Rocks along the Ryan Mountain Trail

Viewpoint

Another viewpoint

Climbing Ryan Mountain

But the most stunning views offers  – of course – the summit…

360 degree panorama from Ryan Mountain

Click on picture to enlarge

We took a little break, enjoyed the view and drank half of our water bottle.

Enjoying the view from Ryan Mountain

On our way back, we met a lot of other hikers so I can definitely recommend doing this trail in the morning.

As the day had just begun, we had enough time to do some more, slightly shorter trails.

Our next stop was the 0.4 miles “Cap Rock Nature Trail”.

Cap Rock Nature Trail

This is a really lovely, short path that leads you along some of these awesome, marble looking rocks that are lying around here everywhere (looks a bit like baby giants had played along with them and forgotten to clear them away after they were finished). This is an interpretative trail, so you’ll find signs explaining the flora and fauna along the track. Plus, there are also some benches where you can sit down and enjoy the stunning view of the desert.

Sitting on a bench in Joshua Tree NP

Our next stop was “Hidden Valley”. As the name points out, this valley was hidden from mankind for a long time because of a circle of rocks, that enclosed it. Due to these rocks and the number of green plants in the valley, this 1-mile loop is well worth doing.

Hidden Valley in Joshua Tree NP

Click on picture to enlarge

Inside Hidden Valley

Our last stop was “Skull Rock”. Guess where the name comes from, this time… 😉

Skull Rock

But the skull is not all that you can see in these rocks. Just let your phantasy and your imagination run wild! I for example spotted an igloo (with a palm tree in the front yard…)…

Igloo in Joshua Tree NP

… and a cute looking animal face:

Face of an animal in stone

There is also a little trail called “Skull Rock Trail” leaving from here. It’s a 1.7-mile loop that passes a campground at one point. It’s a bit sandy but quite nice to walk.

Skull Rock Trail

You only have to watch out for one passage: There is a very narrow part of the trail where you have to squeeze yourself through two rocks. So better avoid big backpacks! 😉

Narrow part of Skull Rock Trail

It was early afternoon when we came back to our hotel. We are staying in the “Best Western Gardens Hotel” in 29 Palms.

Best Western Gardens Hotel

We are quite happy with this place: The room has a good size…

Our room at Best Western Gardens Hotel in Twentynine Palms

… breakfast is included and it has a pool (!!!):

Pool at Best Western Gardens Hotel

What else can you ask for in the middle of the desert?? 😀

More Information about:

Desert Hill Premium Outlet

Joshua Tree National Park

Best Western Gardens Hotel

Driving down the “Kanc”

We have spent the last two days in the White Mountains. On the first day, we drove here from Rutland, Vermont…. OK, I have to admit, we mainly left Rutland because it got a bit creepy here:

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🙂

The last part of the way we drove on the Kancamagus Highway, also called “The Kanc” by insiders as we are now ;-).

It was a sunny October day and even though it is after peak, we had some nice foliage. We stopped several times on the way and did some easy hikes. At first, we walked a bit on the Pine Island Trail at the beginning of the Kanc.

Pine Island Trail in the White Mountains

Our second stop was at the Discovery Trail. The hike is very easy and offers several information panels along the way, explaining the flora and fauna.

Hiking the Discovery Trail at the Kanc

The colour of the trees was stunning and at one point we even had a nice view on the surrounding mountains:

View from the Discovery Trail

Apart from hiking trails, the Kanc has also several nice lookouts where you can stop for one or more pictures.

Lookout # 1

Lookout # 2

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It was while taking pictures from these lookouts when I really regretted not being here when the foliage is at its peak – the colours must be stunning. Well, a good reason to come back one day! 🙂

We stopped at two more attractions: The Rocky Gorge…

Rocky Gorge

… and at the Scenic Falls.

Scenic Falls at the Kanc

We left the Kancamagus Highway at early afternoon, determined to make it to one more picture stop before sunset. We drove another 45 minutes to Bretton Woods.

Mount Washington Hotel in front of Mount Washington

We got a nice shot of the historic Mount Washington Hotel, which became famous in 1944 when representatives of 44 countries created the Monetary Fund and the future World bank at this site, and Mount Washington in the background. We drove back 45 minutes and arrived at our accommodation, Junge’s Motel in North Conway, just before it got dark.

Junge's Motel in North Conway

When we woke up the next morning, it was raining cats and dogs. But hey, no problem when staying in North Conway: they have an outlet center up here (and no tax!!) so we had no problem at all spending this day in the White Mountains by spending some money 🙂

Outlet shopping in North Conway

More information about:

The Kanc

The White Mountains (on facebook)