by Jonathan Spira

The Apple iPod – first introduced in October 2001 – is the forefather of the Apple iPhone and a device that changed the Cupertino, California company’s trajectory from computer manufacturer to more personal devices and an entry into the music industry, where it revolutionized the sale of music.
Compared to the then-prevalent ways of listening to music, which included far more cumbersome MP3 players, not to mention CDs and CD players, …

Great Moments in Travel History – July 2022 Edition

by Jesse Sokolow

Named by the Roman Senate after the general Julius Caesar as it was the month of his birth, July is the seventh month of the calendar.  Prior to that time it was known as Quintillis, or the fifth month of the ten-month Roman calendar.
The month is also the start of the second half of the year and, in the Southern Hemisphere, July is the seasonal equivalent of January in the …

Monday is the Fourth of July Holiday in the U.S.: Here’s What’s Open and What’s Closed for This Year’s Observance

by Kurt Stolz

Monday is the Fourth of July, Independence Day in the United States. This year, many observances of the holiday will return to what resembles pre-pandemic era celebrations, although the pandemic continues to rage on.
Nonetheless, there will be a marked return to some degree of normalcy when compared to how the Fourth was celebrated in 2020.
Although only two-thirds of the country is fully vaccinated against the coronavirus, many of the annual …

Worldwide Chaos Greets Travelers at Airports Ahead of Major Travel Periods

by Anna Breuer

Across the globe, passengers were greeted at airports and by airlines with chaos and meltdowns. Post-lockdown staff shortages and passenger unrest are blighting what was once a tolerable, if not pleasant, experience on both sides of the Atlantic.
Indeed, just when travelers are returning in droves to the skies, they are finding that the skies suddenly can’t handle the increased demand.
The end of coronavirus test requirements and isolation periods should have …

Review: Schloß Elmau, The Bavarian Castle Hotel and Spa Hosting the G-7

by Jonathan Spira

It was only seven years ago that President Obama, German Chancellor Merkel, and other Group of Seven leaders gathered at a summit in the Bavarian Alps to discuss affairs of state that included sanctions against Russia.
While the roster of leaders may have changed, the topic of Russian sanctions remains on the agenda, and that country’s invasion of Ukraine will also be a topic of much conversation.
Nestled at the foot of …

Vienna Named the World’s Most Livable City

by Paul Riegler

Vienna regained the title of the world’s most livable city after losing the spot last year amidst coronavirus restrictions.
The City of Music had held the title in 2018 and 2019 in the annual list that is compiled by the Economist Intelligence Unit.
In 2021, it fell to 12th place as cafés, concert halls, museums, and restaurants remained closed.
Known for images of the Blue Danube, castles and cafés, sweets, and Strauß waltzes, …

Broadway Said ‘Masks Off’ But Not All Theaters or Stars Apparently Got the Memo – or Agree With the Change

by Kurt Stolz
Broadway Said ‘Masks Off’ But Not All Theaters or Stars Apparently Got the Memo – or Agree With the Change

The Broadway League may have announced earlier in June that all 41 Broadway theaters would drop mask mandates starting July 1 of this year but, as it turned out, the united front that the organization, which represents theater owners, claimed to have was not in fact fully united.
Unlike when the group announced, in the spring, that just some theaters would end the requirement at the end of May to present …

Broadway Theaters to End Face Mask Mandate at End of Month

by Anna Breuer

Broadway theaters will end a requirement for theater patrons to don face masks when attending performances, adopting what, without a hint of irony, it termed a “mask optional” policy.
The Broadway League, the group that represents theater owners, said that the policy would remain in force until at least July 31, 2022 and said that the group would continue to “monitor the science,” adding that, if necessary, the mask policy would …