Egypt upset by ignored obelisk gifted to Britain 200 years ago

Egypt upset by ignored obelisk gifted to Britain 200 years ago

The Economist has reported that Egyptian authorities are upset at Britain’s seeming indifference to a gift presented to the country 200 years ago.

It’s a giant 3500-year-old obelisk that sits unloved in an obscure section of the Embankment in London .

The Egyptian Antiquities Department now says that unless Britain shows greater appreciation and care of the monument, they should give it back.

Western powers, going right back to the Roman Empire, sought out and often plundered Egyptian obelisks. They can be found centre stage in a number of European capitals including Paris and Rome.

But the Egyptians say London’s Egyptian obelisk has been poorly maintained and ignored. Bomb damage in the Second World War wasn’t even repaired .

Check out our stories on Egypt’s spectacular obelisks in Empire Builders: Ancient Egyptians, Empire Builders: The Roman Empire and Tough Boats: Egypt Down the Nile.

Thomas Cole: The Course of the Empire

Thomas Cole: The Course of the Empire

British-American artist, Thomas Cole, was largely inspired by great British artists, Turner and Constable. And like many artists in the early 19th century, he took The Grand Tour of Italy and the Mediterranean to visit the great sites of the Ancient world, rediscovering the incredible ruins of Rome, Athens and beyond.

Cole had grown up in the midst of the Industrial Revolution in Northern England, witnessing the dramatic changes it inflicted on society. He would paint that story and it was a theme he revisited again in his new home on America’s East Coast where he emigrated with his family at the age of 17 in 1818.

The United States was in the throes of rapid industrialisation and change, and Cole – who was instrumental in the establishment of the Hudson River School – yearned for a natural world where bucolic landscapes lay undisturbed by progress

These themes, the influence of Turner and Constable and his wonder for the ancient world, would form the basis of Cole’s greatest work: The Course of Empire. Its five canvasses depict the foundation, growth, celebration, collapse and eventual ruin of a mythical empire. It’s a universal story repeated through the ages.

Browse The Course of Empire gallery below and check out our 10 part series, Empire Builders, which charts the growth, power and eventual collapse of 10 of the world’s great empires.

Desolation, 1836

Desolation, 1836

Destruction, 1836

Destruction, 1836

The Consummation of Empire, 1834

The Consummation of Empire, 1834

The Pastoral or Arcadian State, 1834

The Pastoral or Arcadian State, 1834

The Savage State, 1834

The Savage State, 1834

Watch the Empire Builders trailer!

The world’s first film made by an airline and an airport

The world’s first film made by an airline and an airport

Finnair and Helsinki Airport have been connecting East and West for 35 years via Helsinki. To celebrate this achievement, the two have released a short film, the first one of its kind – made by an airline and an airport. The short film East and West Side Story speaks of meaningful encounters that take place when people travel.

East and West Side Story follows a famous writer in need of personal privacy, while the whole world wants to have her in the limelight. The story plays on three continents, spacing from the US to Korea and ending in Finland. As the film’s title East and West Side Story suggests, the film has two directors:  Young-Wok Paik aka “Wookie” comes from Korea and Johan Storm from Sweden. The two directors both give their point of view on the same story, produced by B-Reel Films (Bergman: a Year in Life). The leading roles are played by Anne Bergstedt (Boardwalk Empire, Black Swan) and Jae Hoon (One Day Maybe).

The short film premiered last week in a special event at Helsinki Airport, where an aircraft hangar was turned into a movie theatre for one night. The guests were hosted by Renny Harlin, the established Hollywood filmmaker and one of the most sought-after directors in China.

Watch the film below!

Life cycle assessment vs comfort? Guests’ influence on sustainable hotel practices

Life cycle assessment vs comfort? Guests’ influence on sustainable hotel practices

“The guest is king” – a principle providing great comfort for hotel guests. Nevertheless, wishes and demands by guests can impact hotel practices strongly in some cases. The life cycle assessment, in particular, can suffer from guests’ longing for alleged comfort: coffee machines with aluminum capsules, daily towel exchange, and single-packaged hygiene products. Below, we find out from some partner Green Pearls® partner hotels how to deal with the challenge of keeping guests’ requests and the sustainable alignment balanced.

No benefits for the environment

In many hotels you can find various environmentally harmful practices. A common example is coffee machines with aluminum capsules. Aluminum is the most energy-intensive metal to be processed and the capsules produce heaps of waste – thus, they are anything but eco-friendly and energy-efficient. Exchanging towels and linens daily is gradually declining – even in hotels that are not explicitly sustainable. A good thing since laundry uses up many resources, and, besides, when the textiles consist of synthetic materials micro fibers detach while washing and pollute the oceans. Minibars such as small refrigerators are energy-wasting and small snack packs, single-wrapped soaps and disposable toothbrushes produce excessive trash. In addition, care products and cleaning detergents often contain liquid or micro plastics.

Handtuchwechsel © Green Pearls

Handtuchwechsel © Green Pearls

Alternate ways exist…

Current trends show that guests increasingly demand sustainable actions from hotels and also provide suggestions to the hotel to become (more) eco-friendly. Even though the Green Pearls® hotels are pioneers in terms of sustainability and environmental protection, dedicated guests can be found recurrently. Guests at the hotel SCHWARZWALD PANORAMA are asked to fill in questionnaires about eco-friendly improvements in the hotel. If these are feasible, the hotel does implement them. Due to the guest’s ideas, recycled toilet paper was introduced and plastic straws were banned, among other things.

© SCHWARZWALD PANORAMA

© SCHWARZWALD PANORAMA

Consistent for the climate

In the Hotel Speicher am Ziegelsee, guests repeatedly criticise the lack of coffee machines and minibars in the rooms. According to the guests, minibars, in particular, should not be missing at a 4-star hotel. However, the eco-hotel thinks differently: “You must remain consistent,” emphasises the managing director Christian Petersen the hotel’s persistence. The business hotel cannot be misled by guests’ complaints to protect its climate-neutral status. Instead of minibars, a 24-hour room service for drinks is available at the hotel Speicher am Ziegelsee. On the contrary, environmentally conscious vacationers praise and support the hotel’s consistent sustainable philosophy and climate-friendly projects.

Blick vom See auf das Hotel © Hotel Speicher am Ziegelsee

Blick vom See auf das Hotel © Hotel Speicher am Ziegelsee

Communication as a solution

Communication can prevent dissatisfied guests in many cases. The hotel SCHWARZWALD PANORAMA provides an example: Many environmentally conscious guests used the “Do Not Disturb” sign to signal that neither their room should be cleaned nor the towels be exchanged. Though a good idea, but the room service cleaned those rooms later that day, since the sign does not explicitly concern the room cleaning. Meanwhile, printed lavender bags for the doorknob make it easier to communicate: “No room cleaning today!” Moreover, the Creativhotel Luise applies multi-layered communication during the sustainable renovation to inform its guests and avoid complaints that way: banners outside, information boards in the hotel, gift boxes including letters and small presents as compensation.

Frisches Obst © Leitlhof

Frisches Obst © Leitlhof

Preventing complaints with sustainable services

In the eco-hotel Leitlhof in the Dolomites guests have not yet complained about sustainable initiatives or provided ideas for improvements. However, the hotel always communicates its environmentally conscious goals in person on site to prevent misunderstandings. In addition, all emails contain the note to avoid the printout to save paper. Furthermore, guests are also informed about alternative, sustainable services to prevent complaints: instead of a minibar, guests are offered tea and fresh fruits daily, and a shuttle service takes them to the city and the slopes.

Bach im Wald © SCHWARZWALD PANORAMA

Bach im Wald © SCHWARZWALD PANORAMA

Rethinking complaints

Before complaining about something, one might rethink if the demand is inevitable: a coffee machine in the room appears superfluous when it is available at the breakfast buffet. A plentifully covered buffet is a delight for the guest, though it produces lots of leftovers at the same time. If everyone is a bit more humble, it will be a big step for the wellbeing of our environment. The solution is to act more consciously, as recognised by Stephan Bode from the SCHWARZWALD PANORAMA: “We are not only aware of our role as a host, but we have understood that our company is the guest of our host the Earth. Therefore, I see myself less as managing director and owner, but rather interpret my role as guardian of the guest-house SCHWARZWALD PANORAMA.”

More Information

Green Pearls

Interested in learning more about cool, innovative or just downright quirky hotels around the world? From the bizarrely themed to the bizarrely constructed, Globe Guides Extreme Hotels brings you the world’s maddest collection of overnight stays on the planet.

British Explorers: The Mausoleum of Sir Richard Burton

British Explorers: The Mausoleum of Sir Richard Burton

The Mausoleum of Sir Richard and Lady Burton (pictured above) is a Grade II listed tent-shaped mausoleum of Carrara marble and Forest of Dean stone in the churchyard of St Mary Magdalen Roman Catholic Church Mortlake located in London.

burton-gravesiteSir Richard Burton, who died in 1890, was an explorer, geographer, translator, writer, soldier, orientalist, cartographer, ethnologist, spy, linguist, poet, fencer, and diplomat. He was famed for his travels and explorations in Asia, Africa and the Americas, as well as his extraordinary knowledge of languages and cultures. According to one count, he spoke 29 European, Asian and African languages.

Burton’s best-known achievements include a well-documented journey to Mecca in disguise, at a time when Europeans were forbidden access on pain of death; and a journey with John Hanning Speke as the first Europeans to visit the Great Lakes of Africa in search of the source of the Nile.

Do you love learning about famous explorers throughout history? Watch our mini series The Lost World of Joseph Banks.

 

Legal Cannabis in California

Legal Cannabis in California

Any visitor to Californian cities, such as Los Angeles, can’t help but notice the proliferation of shops selling cannabis legally to the public. In addition, a number of industries have sprung up to support this growth.

Here are ten questions answered about California’s legal cannabis boom.

1. Why has it happened?

California has always been known as being amongst the most socially progressive states in America, so its relaxed laws on cannabis come as little surprise. Indeed, cannabis has been decriminalised in California since 1975 before being legalised for medicinal purposes in 1996. Thus, there has been much precedent for cannabis’ complete legalisation in 2018. Due to these long-term relaxed laws, cannabis has been a major part of Californias cultural identity. Even prior to the complete legalisation of cannabis, the state has been generally accepting of recreational marijuana use. Thus, the legalisation of cannabis in California is a culmination of its cultural and legal history within the state in addition to the significant potential economic benefits. 

2. What is the extent of the boom in shops selling cannabis?

Prior to the official legalisation of cannabis at the beginning of 2018, cannabis was available for medicinal use through dispensaries. These are prevalent throughout the state. Since legalisation, however, there has been a considerable uptick in cannabis-associated businesses covering a number of different brands. Due to the robust infrastructure already in place from the medicinal marijuana industry, it has been very easy for recreational cannabis sellers to rise up quickly. There are currently 261 separate dispensaries in addition to many more medicinal dispensaries. The only state with more dispensaries is Oregon, where cannabis has been legal for a longer period of time. None of these dispensaries have permanent licenses yet, instead being endowed with temporary ones. In addition to dispensaries, a number of other businesses have emerged including delivery services such as Eaze and dispensary locator apps. A full-fledged, sophisticated industry has emerged surrounding the cannabis industry.

3. What do these shops sell? Are there different types of cannabis reflecting brands and strengths?

Cannabis products in California are divided into four major categories: Flowers, Concentrates, Edibles and Applications. Flowers refer to the marijuana plant itself – dried buds, which are by far the most popular form of cannabis consumption. There are hundreds of different varieties of strains, each slightly different from the other. Concentrates refer to a number of different products created through the extractions of trichome from marijuana plants. Trichomes are the small, shiny crystals found on mature plants. These are generally stronger than flowers and are made into a number of different products including wax and oils. These are most often consumed through the use of a vape pen, a more inconspicuous means of consumption. Edibles, as their name indicates, refer to food items incorporated with cannabis extractions. These often have more of a delayed effect than other means of consumption. Applications are a more medicinal means of consumption, containing high doses of CBD in the forms of patches used to alleviate physical pain or mental disorders such as anxiety. 

Cannabis is divided into two main forms – Sativa and Indica, with hybridised forms of the two also being available. Sativa strains are known for being more cerebral effects with a higher THC content whereas Indica strains are known for their more sedate effects and have a higher CBD content. 

4. Is the cannabis sold for medicinal purposes?

cannabis-in-california-by-pilot-productionsCannabis has a number of medicinal functions and has been legal in California for medicinal purposes in the state of California since 1996. There has been evidence to suggest that cannabis has beneficial effects in alleviating pain and nausea for those suffering from illnesses such as cancer, HIV/AIDS and even multiple sclerosis. Its use for mental disorders is more inconclusive such as PTSD, anxiety and depression. Cannabis can have adverse effects, including cognitive impairment and psychosis. However, these effects differ from person to person. Its medicinal purposes, while they doubtlessly exist, are not supported by overwhelming evidence due to laws over its legality restricting research. 

5. What are the legal issues?

As of the beginning of 2018, cannabis is legal for recreational use in the state of California. Despite this, there are still certain restrictions in place regarding its consumption and distribution. Users of cannabis must be over the age of 21, the same as alcohol. Furthermore, like alcohol, consumption is legally prohibited in public spaces and there is a penalty of a $100 fine for those who do this. Cannabis in excess of one ounce must be privately stored in ones residential property away from a public space. There is a limit of six plants at any one residence. Consumption of cannabis while driving is also illegal, as is possession within a school area. 

6. Is there a similar boom in the number of growers?

Cannabis plantations can be found throughout the entire state, although production is mainly in the region of Northern California nicknamed the Emerald Triangle. Prior to legalisation, a vast network of authorised growers were active, producing vast quantities of cannabis for medicinal consumption. Following legalisation, the law allowing adults to grow up to six plants within their own residence has been ratified. There are no limits to the amount those growing marijuana for medicinal purposes, although these laws are rumoured to change. There are over 68,000 cannabis cultivators in California, although fewer than 1% of these are licensed. Many growers have struggled to adapt to the new regulations of cannabis production. Despite the legalisation, a black market still remains intact. 

7. How is cannabis taxed? Is it a revenue earner for the government?

Since legalisation, a number of different taxes have been imposed upon the emerging cannabis industry. In the first quarter of 2018, the California State Government collected $60 million in tax from cannabis, well below expectations. The excise tax generated $32 million. Cultivation tax comprised $1.6 million while the sales tax comprised the remaining $27.3 million. Despite falling short of initial predictions, cannabis is projected to generate a considerable tax windfall for the Californian government in the coming years. Prices are increasing from an average of $54 per ounce to $65 per ounce. 

8. Is big business getting involved?

There are so far 6,000 licensed cannabis businesses operating within California. A wealth of start-ups have emerged in tech hotspots such as Silicon Valley and Los Angeles in addition to boutique businesses. Larger conglomerates, having sensed the industrys highly lucrative potential, have gotten involved. This development has left a number of smaller operations concerned, with there being government motions drawn up to protect small-level businesses from being put out of businesses. Despite this, given the ripe potential for the cannabis industry, it is only a matter of time before major companies become more intimately involved. With taxes driving up prices, wealthy companies may look to combat this by flooding the market and dominating supply and demand. This will drive small businesses out of work or alternatively consolidate them.

9. What other states and counties allow cannabis for sale? 

cannabis-in-california-by-pilot-productions-1Currently, cannabis is legal for recreational use in 9 US states – Alaska, California, Colorado, Maine, Massachussetts, Nevada, Oregon, Vermont and Washington as well as in the District of Columbia. With the exception of Vermont and the District of Columbia wherein the commercialisation of cannabis is prohibited, the laws are generally the same between these states. An additional 13 states have decriminalised recreational marijuana use. Furthermore, medicinal marijuana is legal in 31 states. Indeed, only in 3 states – Idaho, Kansas and South Dakota – is cannabis consumption entirely illegal. Despite this, cannabis use and possession is classified as illegal under federal law, which causes conflict and confusion over laws surrounding the drug throughout the country.

Outside of the United States, only three countries have legalised recreational cannabis use – Canada, Georgia and Uruguay. However, a wealth of countries around the world have decriminalised cannabis or have some form of medicinal marijuana laws. Portugal and Spain are well-known for their relaxed laws and the Netherlands is particularly well-known for its cannabis culture. While it is not legal all across the country, in certain areas such as the capital city Amsterdam, it is legal to consume cannabis within coffee shops. This style of cannabis culture differs from the more heavily-regulated one which exists in California and elsewhere in the United States.

10. Can anybody buy cannabis? What documents do you need to produce when purchasing?

Cannabis is available to purchase for those who are over the age of 21, producing a valid form of ID such as a passport or a drivers license. In regards to medicinal marijuana, customers must be over the age of 18. Since the legalisation as of the beginning of 2018, it is legal for non-citizens to buy and consume, although it remains federally illegal.

Interested in all things Californian and revolutionary? In our Metropolis – Los Angeles episode presenter Charlie Luxton learns that LA’s unique architectural legacy stemmed from a freedom afforded no-where else on earth. In many ways, this was a city where anything goes, and did. Here, revolutionary ideas were tried and tested with spectacular results.

Captain Cook continues to inspire travel habits

Captain Cook continues to inspire travel habits

As the 26th of August marked the 250th anniversary of Captain Cook’s maiden round the world voyage, take a look at some of the amazing destinations that were discovered on this epic journey.

Departing from Plymouth in 1778, Cook and his 100-strong crew embarked on the trip of a lifetime that would have even today’s jet-setters jealous.

Madeira, Portugal 

This tiny island off the coast of Portugal, rising out of the Atlantic’s waves, was the first stop of the Endeavour. The iconic harbour of the island’s capital, Funchal – with its dazzling firework displays and botanical gardens – will be sure to keep you entertained. The island is also famed for its wineries, its sports fans and the CR7 Museum is also a must see!

madeira-portugal

Rio De Janeiro, Brazil  

Cook used Rio De Janeiro as a supply stop, but travellers today will take in the sights of Copacabana Beach, Christ the Redeemer and shimmy to some Samba Music. Revellers will also marvel at the views from Sugarloaf Mountain or party the days and nights away in Rio’s carnival atmosphere. One thing’s for certain, Rio is a far cry from the days of Captain Cook.

rio-de-janeiro-brazil

Tierra Del Fuego, Argentina 

When Cook ventured ashore at Tierra Del Fuego, he described the locals as, “the most miserable group of people on the planet”. Tierra Del Fuego truly could be ‘The End of the World’. But nowadays, travellers are blown away by the staggering scenery offered at the gateway to Antarctica. The snowy mountains and glaciers are timeless or visit Ushuaia’s busy port and take a boat trip to Penguin Isle.

tierra-del-fuego

Tahiti, French Polynesia

Just the thought of Tahiti brings images of palm trees and sandy beaches. In fact, when it was time for Cook’s voyage to leave the island, two of his crew attempted to desert, due to falling for local women. The Polynesian hospitality and staggering natural scenery will make you fall in love with this little piece of paradise in the Pacific.

tahiti

New Zealand

When Cook first arrived on the coast of New Zealand, he was greeted by the Maori people and the Haka. Nowadays, the traditional war dance can be experienced by watching the world famous All Blacks rugby team. New Zealand is one of the world’s most popular tourist destinations, and it’s not hard to understand why. The ultra-modern city of Auckland, the beautiful 15,000-kilometres coastline, and of course, the scenery and landscape that made Lord of the Rings possible.

new-zealand

Australia

When Cook landed at Stingray, New Holland, as the land Down Under was known back in 1770, he can’t have known that just 250 years later, the area would be home to the Sydney Opera House, Sydney Harbour Bridge and some of the most amazing beaches on the planet.

sydney

Jakarta, Indonesia 

Indonesia’s capital was the port where the Cook’s ship, the Endeavour, received repairs after damaging itself on the Great Barrier Reef. Back then, it was part of the Dutch East Indies, but now, it could be one of the most multicultural spots on the planet. Javanese? Arabic? Malay? European? You name it, there is some part of the culture in Jakarta! Visit the old town for a taste of what Cook experienced when he sailed to this former Dutch Colony.

jakarta

Cape Town, South Africa

Cook’s final stop on his epic voyage, Cape Town, sits on the Cape of Good Hope. Dramatic cliffs, table top mountain and Robben Island – the prison that held Nelson Mandela for 25 years – are tourist hotspots for visiting holiday makers. Cape Town can truly be seen as one of Africa’s jewels, and no true around the world voyage can be completed without seeing this incredible city.

cape-town-bo-kaap-south-africa

More Information

Kiwi.com

To replicate Captain Cook’s journey, check out the Nomad feature on this travel website.

Love learning about famous explorers throughout history? Watch our mini series The Lost World of Joseph Banks.

The world’s most liveable cities in 2018

The world's most liveable cities in 2018

The Austrian capital, Vienna, has beaten Australia’s Melbourne to be named the world’s most liveable city in 2018.

It’s the first time a European city has topped the rankings of the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) annual survey.

The worldwide league table ranks 140 cities on a range of factors, including political and social stability, crime, education and access to healthcare.

In the survey, Manchester saw the biggest improvement of any European city, rising by 16 places to rank 35th.

Interestingly, Manchester’s rise puts it ahead of London in the rankings by 13 places, the widest gap between the two cities since the survey began two decades ago.

The ten most liveable cities in 2018:

1. Vienna, Austria

2. Melbourne, Australia

3. Osaka, Japan

4. Calgary, Canada

5. Sydney, Australia

6. Vancouver, Canada

7. Tokyo, Japan

8. Toronto, Canada

9. Copenhagen, Denmark

10. Adelaide, Australia

The ten least liveable cities 2018:

1. Damascus, Syria

2. Dhaka, Bangladesh

3. Lagos, Nigeria

4. Karachi, Pakistan

5. Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea

6. Harare, Zimbabwe

7. Tripoli, Libya

8. Douala, Cameroon

9. Algiers, Algeria

10. Dakar, Senegal

Inspired to travel (or move) to this incredible European city? Watch our Vienna City Guide below!

Finland now has a zero cabin! Meet Nolla: The cabin that was never there

Finland now has a zero cabin! Meet Nolla: The cabin that was never there

This summer, living with minimal emissions will be put to the test. Neste is building a prototype of a cabin that has a minimal environmental impact in terms of both carbon dioxide emissions and concrete impact on nature. The Nolla (= zero) cabin, designed by Finnish designer Robin Falck, is located just outside Helsinki city centre, on the Vallisaari island. The cabin has been built from sustainable materials and is designed for a simple lifestyle with minimal to no emissions, taking into account the surrounding nature in every respect.

5_nollaLocated on the idyllic island of Vallisaari in the Helsinki archipelago, the Nolla cabin encourages people to consider how modern solutions and innovations could enable sustainable cabin living. Vallisaari has been in a natural state for decades and is thus the perfect location for an urban cabin experience, located just a 20-minute boat ride away from the Helsinki market square.

The ecological and mobile Nolla cabin will be in Vallisaari until the end of September, demonstrating a lifestyle that generates minimal to no emissions.

Placing the compact and mobile cabin on its private lot does not require a construction permit and it has been designed to use building materials as effectively as possible. The cabin is the size of a small bedroom and can be assembled and transported without heavy machinery, leaving its environment nearly untouched. The Nolla cabin has been designed by Finnish designer Robin Falck, whose earlier design, Nido cabin, has been globally acknowledged.

7_nollaThe Nolla cabin introduces solutions, which enable minimising cabin life emissions remarkably. The energy supply of the cabin is entirely renewable; electricity is generated by solar panels, while the Wallas stove, reserved for cooking and heating, runs entirely on Neste MY Renewable Diesel, made 100% from waste and residue. The Aava Lines raft operating between Helsinki city centre and Vallisaari will also run on Neste MY Renewable diesel that can reduce greenhouse gas emissions by up to 90%.

“With the Nolla cabin, we want to offer visitors the possibility to experience modern cabin life in the realm of nature, with minimal emissions. An ecological lifestyle does not only require giving up unsustainable commodities, but also discovering modern, sustainable solutions that can be used instead. This has been an essential part of the design process”, says Falck.

“Finns are known for spending time at their beloved summer houses. We wanted to explore sustainable solutions that could enable cabin life with minimal emissions. Shared and circular economy, as well as new technologies and innovations have made it possible to enjoy our cabins without harming or burdening the environment. Some of the solutions that have been used at the Nolla cabin are perfectly adaptable at any cabin”, says Sirpa Tuomi, Marketing Director at Neste.

The Nolla cabin is executed in collaboration with Fortum, Wallas and Stockmann and is part of the Journey to Zero project by Neste, which explores new ideas and aims to steer the world towards a cleaner future with fewer emissions.

The #nolla cabin in a nutshell

1_nollaDesigner: Robin Falck

Dimensions: Height 4m, width 3.75m

Materials: Main material plywood, the floor has been coated with a non-toxic, water-soluble varnish

Energy supply: Fortum solar panels

Heating: Fortum solar panels, Wallas, Neste MY Renewable Diesel

Weight: 900 kg

Decor: Stockmann Sustainable Collection

More Information

The Nolla cabin by Neste

Hollyhock House: Frank Lloyd Wright in Los Angeles

Hollyhock House: Frank Lloyd Wright in Los Angeles

Hollyhock House in the East Hollywood, Los Angeles, built from 1919 to 1921, was one of Frank Lloyd Wright’s earliest commissions, and his second in California.

It was built for American oil heiress, Aline Barnsdall, who never actually lived in it. The building is now the centerpiece of the city’s Barnsdall Art Park.

It was donated to the City of Los Angeles in 1927. The city recently spent five million dollars restoring it.

As with many of Wright’s residences, it has an “introverted” exterior with small windows, and is not easy to decode from the outside. The house is arranged around a central courtyard with one side open to form a kind of theatrical stage and a complex system of split levels, steps and roof terraces around that courtyard. The design features exterior walls that are tilted back at 85 degrees (which gives it a “Mayan” appearance, sometimes referred to as the Mayan Revival style), leaded art glass in the windows, a grand fireplace with a large abstract bas-relief, and a moat.

The hollyhock plant common in the area is used as a central theme to the design. An interesting feature is the glass corners, an early Wright idea later used at Fallingwater.

Like many houses designed by Wright, it proved to be better as an aesthetic work than as a livable dwelling. Water tended to flow over the central lawn and into the living room, and the flat roof terraces were conceived without an understanding of Los Angeles’ rains. The cantilevered concrete also has not stood up well to the area’s earthquakes.

Interested in finding out more about LA’s archiecture? Watch our Metropolis Los Angeles episode.