Airport Dining Rooms So Fancy Business Class Is Excluded

With First Class travelers wanting to sleep and work on board, upscale meals are migrating to the terminal lounge.
June 21, 2017, 2:15 PM GMT+5:30 June 21, 2017, 9:18 PM GMT+5:30

“You’ve got to try the burger.”

That was the counsel of Kurt Stache, a veteran of airport dining and airline marketing, while briefing me on the various attributes of recent renovations his employer, American Airlines, has completed at New York’s JFK International Airport.

This particular “flagship” sirloin burger is one of the initial hits on the new menu American assembled for its first foray into restaurant-style dining at an airport lounge. The carrier opened its “Flagship First Dining” room in May in a space adjacent to its renovated lounge in Terminal 8.

The venue has the spartan sensibility one expects from some high-end eateries. The bar is up front and the tables in back, with a lovely chandelier dangling overhead. But the glass windows are rightfully allowed to dominate. The room is a sleek space overlooking the tarmac—aviation geeks will be pleased by the aircraft views.

So, anyway, I went with the burger.

It is a lovely thing to behold, not super-sized or excessively messy the way many renditions are engineered. It’s served atop a crisp tomato slice and a few shreds of arugula and then topped with a marmalade of red onion and bacon. This last bit adds a subtle sweetness to the thin layer of char that encloses juicy ground sirloin. There were French fries, I think, but I don’t really recall. The beef was so much more interesting. Cheddar cheese is a good option, but I chose to taste the burger on its own.

While the focus is on seasonal and local ingredients, it’s one of the very few items that will stay year-round, said Stache, senior vice president for marketing and loyalty at American Airlines Group Inc. I preceded the burger with samples of three appetizers: basil-infused “compressed” watermelon with a feta cheese garnish, tomato bisque with a miniature (2 inches square!) grilled cheese sandwich, and a chilled smoked duck breast. The Loch Duart salmon, a farmed variety from the northern reaches of Scotland, was fresh, tender, and poached superbly in olive oil and served atop a cauliflower risotto. Each entree is listed with a suggested wine pairing.

The dining room highlights American’s effort to maintain a distinction between first and business class, a different approach from many other airlines that have collapsed those into a single cabin. Nevertheless, the restaurant isn’t fussy or pretentious, nor did the wait staff appear to consider these menu selections precious heirlooms. Instead, these are carefully attended plates with high-quality ingredients—minus the stuffy.

After all, this is JFK.

The Flagship sirloin burger.
Photographer: Caitlin Ochs/Bloomberg

While the larger lounge accepts an array of American’s elite customers, access to the dining room is tightly controlled—only people traveling internationally or transcontinental with a first class ticket are allowed. Even those with the elite, Concierge Key frequent flyer status need one. This keeps the amenity highly exclusive—always a tantalizing allure for a certain jet set—and prevents the dining room from becoming overly crowded. Our waiter said he’d seen no more than 10-12 diners concurrently during the first three weeks of operation.

American put its first Flagship dining eatery at JFK, the airport where it has the most departures booked in first class, and will open two more by yearend at its hubs in Los Angeles and Miami. In 2018 the airline will expand this dining concept to Dallas-Fort Worth and London.

This focus on finer dining in the airport is one that premium long-haul airlines have offered for years, from Sydney to Singapore, Hong Kong to Dubai, London, and Paris. Yet a restaurant-style dining experience is relatively new to the U.S. aviation scene, where airlines have traditionally pinched pennies even for their wealthiest passengers.

United Continental Holdings Inc. opened its first “Polaris” business class lounge in December at its Chicago hub, with a la carte menu items supplementing the lounge’s buffet and designed by Chicago chef Art Smith. United plans five more of the lounges this year at its U.S. hubs, with Hong Kong, London, and Tokyo slated for 2018. United also offers a posh burger as an entree, from Chicago’s Blue Door Kitchen, served with an optional fried egg.

Since righting their financial fortunes following the bankruptcy years, U.S. airlines have invested heavily to spruce up their fleets and onboard amenities, particularly those targeting the big spenders who sit up front. Premium-cabin meals and wines have seen gradual upgrades while the carriers have also deployed upscale seats that transition into fully flat beds for improved sleep.

[Source”pcworld”]

North Texas lawmakers will introduce two bathroom bills in special session

The Texas bathroom bill has been arguably the most controversial bill introduced during Texas' 2017 Legislative Session, drawing reaction from protesters, politicians, business leaders and celebrities.  Keep going to see what you need to know about previous versions of the proposed law.  Photo: Sara D. Davis, Stringer / 2016 Getty Images

AUSTIN — After a brief respite, the bathroom wars are heating up again.

Rep. Ron Simmons, R-Carrollton, is expected to introduce two bills in the upcoming special session of the Texas Legislature that would regulate which public bathrooms transgender Texans, including schoolchildren, can use.

WHAT THEY SAID: GOP Board of Ed members sound off on special session

The first bill, which will closely resemble his bill that failed during the regular session, will be a broad attempt to prohibit cities, counties and public school districts from enforcing non-discrimination ordinances involving multi-occupancy restrooms or locker rooms.

It is expected to allow exceptions for people already protected under state and federal anti-discrimination laws, which do not include sexual orientation or gender identity.

Simmons’ bill would effectively invalidate local nondiscrimination ordinances that allow transgender people to use public restrooms that match their gender identity, as well as school district policies that make accommodations for transgender students.

The path for Texas to enact its version of a North Carolina-style bathroom bill is poised to get far tougher as the Republican-controlled state House closes in on a key midnight Thursday deadline to approve legislation.

Media: WochIt Media

That proposal, House Bill 2899, had 79 co-sponsors, all Republicans, before lawmakers left Austin in late May. A bill needs to win a simple majority, or 76 votes, on the House floor to pass.

BACKLASH: Paxton leads 35-state coalition over internet speed advertisements

A second proposal Simmons plans to introduce would apply only to public school districts.

Simmons’s intentions were first reported by The Dallas Morning News, and he did not respond to the Houston Chronicle’s request for comment.

This month, Gov. Greg Abbott announced a special session to begin July 18, calling lawmakers back to Austin for at least one month to tackle 20 items he said were not addressed to his satisfaction during the 140-day regular legislative session, which ended in May. Reauthorizing the Texas Medical Board and a handful of other agencies, which could close if lawmakers do not approve their continuation, topped Abbott’s list.

He also listed “privacy” as one of the topics, saying that “at a minimum” he wants a bill that applies to the use of bathrooms and locker rooms in public schools. In the regular session, Abbott praised Simmons’ bill

[Source”pcworld”]

Report: 94-hour workweek required at minimum wage to afford 2-bedroom apartment in Utah

Larry Darden poses for a portrait in his home at the Lowell Apartments in Salt Lake City on Wednesday, June 14, 2017. Darden, who has been in his current apartment for a year and a half, had issues previously with finding affordable housing and suffered from unsafe living conditions.

SALT LAKE CITY — Before Larry Darden moved out in early 2016, he “was afraid to go to sleep at night” in his downtown Salt Lake apartment.

Roaches infested the place. There were attempted break-ins. Darden never felt comfortable or secure.

“It was very, very unsafe at my last address,” Darden says.

Despite the deplorable conditions, Darden was hundreds of dollars per month short of being able to consistently afford his apartment.

But after his applications for a place elsewhere were met with repeated rejections due to his prior criminal record, Darden was given a lifeline. He was able to get in at the Lowell Apartments, a low-income affordable housing complex at 233 E. 700 South managed by the Utah Nonprofit Housing Corp.

“Once I moved from there into here, it was like moving into paradise,” Darden told the Deseret News while proudly giving a tour of his one-bedroom apartment.

Larry Darden looks on while in his home at the Lowell Apartments in Salt Lake City on Wednesday, June 14, 2017. Darden, who has been in his current apartment for a year and a half, had issues previously with finding affordable housing and suffered from unsafe living conditions. | Alex Goodlett, Deseret News

But even the Lowell Apartments took nearly a year to get Darden in — largely because of the overwhelming demand in Salt Lake City for affordable housing for low-income residents. Darden knows how fortunate he is.

“Here, it’s quiet, it’s respectful. There’s no problems, it’s a great place to lay your head in,” Darden said. “It’s very, very hard to find a place like this.”

The standard rent at the Lowell Apartments is a below-market rate of $575 per month — a few hundred dollars less than he was paying — and there is flexibility on top of that. Darden works as a residential assistant there to earn the remaining amount he cannot pay.

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Many other Utahns who could use affordable housing are not as lucky. Officials estimate the state has a shortage of 43,000 affordable units. For those who simply can’t get in, the mainstream housing market has their way with them.

And that market has not been kind to low-income Utahns.

According to new data published by the National Low Income Housing Coalition, a person or household earning minimum wage must work 76 hours per week in order to reasonably afford a one-bedroom apartment at the fair market rate in Utah.

By the same metric, affording a two-bedroom apartment in Utah would require working 94 hours per week at minimum wage, the organization reported.

At just 40 hours per week, the lowest wage that could afford a two-bedroom apartment in Utah is $17.02 per hour on average, states the report, published June 8 and titled “Out of Reach: The High Cost of Housing.”

That places Utah near the middle of the road in the United States, with the 25th lowest such required wage, the National Low Income Housing Coalition said. Minimum wage in Utah is $7.25.

The findings indicate that minimum-wage workers must choose between working exorbitant hours or spending a very high and exceptionally risky portion of their income on housing, the report authors believe.

“A severely (rent) cost-burdened household is often one unexpected bill away from losing their home,” housing coalition spokeswoman Lisa Marlow said in an email, citing a medical bill or a car repair as examples. “One emergency puts them behind in paying for their housing. Families in this situation are likely to experience greater stress (and) poorer health.”

There are 276,708 renter households in Utah, accounting for about 31 percent of all residences in the state. According to the report, at 40 hours of work each week, the household earning the average wage of a Utah renter — $13.26 per hour — could reasonably afford $689 per month in rent. The average fair market rate for a two-bedroom apartment in Utah is $885 per month; it’s $716 per month for a one-bedroom apartment.

The housing coalition based its findings on the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s calculation of fair market rent rates in every American county and metropolitan area. The fair market rate is considered “what a family moving today could expect to pay for a modest apartment or rental home in the area,” Marlow said.

Following the same methodology of the federal government, the organization defines housing as affordable when household members use less than 30 percent of their income to pay for it. Households above that threshold are considered significantly cost-burdened by housing, while those who pay for it with more than 50 percent of their income are considered severely cost-burdened.

A factor in homelessness

Unaffordable housing strongly increases the chances of a minimum-wage worker being evicted and potentially becoming homeless, according to Marlow.

“Homelessness is the direct result of the affordable rental housing shortage,” she said. “We have learned from a growing collection of studies that stable, affordable housing has positive outcomes regarding health, education and employment.”

Glenn Bailey, executive director of the Crossroads Urban Center, which runs a food pantry and thrift store serving needy populations, said a clear line can be drawn between a lack of affordable housing and homelessness.+

[Source”GSmerena”]

Designing Kitchens, Bathrooms and Bedrooms – Summer Holidays 2016

Design 1 - 110 Range

We like to think we finally had some breathing space last week, as Leicestershire got their head start on the summer holidays and most people like to take advantage of the pre-school-holiday prices. But in reality, we have lots of customers coming in this week and next to see the designs we have been working on in their absence, and we want to make sure that every design ticks as many boxes as possible. We have a few major designs going on at the moment, and we’ll give you an insight into the process behind three of them.

Mrs P

We designed and fitted Mrs P’s elaborate yet understated new bathroom for her last year, so we’ve been given another chance to impress with her huge kitchen.

Elongated but with cute alcoves and features, the open plan kitchen / diner / sitting area looking out onto a gorgeous garden is an exciting challenge for any designer. When we started meeting Mrs P about her kitchen, we discussed whether she would prefer modern or traditional, form or function, whether glazed or solid doors were preferable, and many, many other topics of conversation relating to Mrs P’s kitchen preferences. Fortunately for our creative side, Mrs P is open to all ideas, but particularly loved our Austin (real ash, painted shaker) door in our showroom.

So, to begin with, we used ArtiCAD to create three different designs which all utilised the adorable little alcove which you will see on the rendered image below. The first placed a lovely 110 Range cooker in the space with cupboards and spice racks either side for immediate access to anything Mrs P may need when cooking.

The second incorporated a bank of tall larder units framing Mrs P’s American Fridge Freezer, with a lift up top box above the fridge itself for maximum utilisation of space.

The third is completely different, turning the alcove into a cosy window seating area with incorporated under-seat bookshelves, allowing us to move the Range cooker to another wall where we can put a mantle over it, which is always a fabulous statement in any kitchen. So far, Mrs P has eliminated option 2, which means we can focus on other elements of the kitchen. It may sound strange, but we like to show our customers designs even if we do not think they will like the design in particular. It means that when you have finally chosen your design and had your new kitchen fitted, you’ll never have any doubts or wishes that we had designed it for you in a different way.

Before Mrs P left our showroom a couple of weeks ago, we discussed the idea of a beach-themed kitchen, making full use of our brand new Windsor Blue doors, complemented with Ivory or White Cotton wall units. We all got quite excited about designing this, and let us tell you, it looks fantastic. However, we can not show you the designs until Mrs P has seen them first – sorry! Keep checking our News page for updates and we might let you have a sneak peek!

 

[Source:- greenstone-kbb]

 

Your Bathroom at Christmas

A minimalistic bathroom means minimal cleaning.

Most people have guests stopping over for a few nights around the festive period. Whether you have an en-suite or a main bathroom, if you have been thinking of updating it for a while now, it is probably overdue an update before your guests arrive. Sometimes a good clean, a lick of paint and colour co-ordinated lotion and potion bottles can spruce up the whole room. Give it a go and see. However, if you have panels falling away from your bath, or the shower tray is broken, or your tiles are really, really dated, you know you need a new bathroom. Why not just get it done in time for Christmas?

A new bathroom with a fixed shower screen, a stone shower tray (which will not crack) and minimalistic, easy-clean sanitaryware will be almost heavenly to use around Christmas time; you can bathe the dog without worrying about scrubbing at mud stains for hours afterwards; the kids can splash as much water as they like without making your new Karndean floor slippery; and of course, at the end of a long day, you can have a relaxing soak in a lovely, new, clean bathroom.

 

 

 

[Source:- greenstone-kbb]

Your Kitchen at Christmas

A pantry is great for storing all that Christmas food.

You may be surprised to hear that around 75% of our customers during their kitchen design process will specifically mention Christmas as a reason for a certain feature, be it a bigger oven, more worktop space, or room for a large dining room table. It is only one day a year, but it is so important to us all that it is somewhere at the back of our minds when planning a kitchen, regardless of when exactly we are planning it.

If you’re starting to panic about oven space, worktop space, or room to sit everyone down for the biggest meal of the year, maybe it could be time to redesign your kitchen. We’re not saying you should plan your entire kitchen around Christmas, but it will definitely help if you redesign it with the big day in mind.

 

 

[Source:- greenstone-kbb]

Sofa with Delicate Curves – Valentim by DAM

valentim-sofa-dam-3

Valentim is a newest product of DAM, sofa that refers to the nostalgia of the serenades dedicated to a maiden at the balcony. Be in walnut or oak, the Valentim sofa is available in key colors to make sure you feel sheltered by exceptional fabrics in inspiring and relaxing colors. Let’s take a look at the four colors of the Fame fabric by Gabriel for the upholstery.

The color Baby Blue evokes the sky and reflects a sense of order and peace. The Shy Blue enhance the idea of freshness and wellness. The color Retro Pink is a reminiscent of the sunset, carrying us to a mystical atmosphere. The Elegant Gray is a serene and sophisticated color. Select the Valentim sofa according to your mood and attitude and blend with other colours into a pleasing combination.

 

 

[Source:- Interirozine]

Be inspired by Jonathan Adler’s iconic redesign of the Parker Palm Springs

Our first look inside designer Jonathan Adler’s first foray into public art is stylish, cool and absolutely fabulous. Along with the redesign of the Parker Palm Springs, Jonathan’s work spans myriad of categories, from pots to swanky sofas. In less than 20 years he’s opened nearly 30 stores.

The home decor expert refurbished the luxurious hotel with his signature flourishes and a vibrant and playful colour palette.

‘This hotel is a psychedelic passion project that has been part of my life for over a decade. When it came to refreshing the vibe I wanted The Parker to stay groovy but feel new.’

[Source:- IH]

Kitchen extensions: All the inspiration and advice you need

Colour code kitchen zones

Make large, open-plan spaces work by using colour to define different functions. Try white, handleless cabinetry for a practical, easy-to-maintain cooking and food preparation area. Introduce a contrast shade on a breakfast bar island to signpost the change of function, but keep the worktop white to indicate that this is a dual-function surface. For dining, go unfinished wood – in keeping with its proximity to the patio, this table and chairs could be mistaken for garden furniture. Unify the whole with timber flooring, a wooden sideboard and a row of wooden bar stools.

 

 

[Source:- IH]

Graham & Brown announces ‘Reflections’ as wallpaper of the year 2017

Fresh for the new year, Graham & Brown has unveiled Reflections as its wallpaper of the year. The contemporary design is a perfect fusion of geometric shapes, marbling and lustrous metallic shimmer – all identified as key trends for this season by the in-house design team.

Introducing the winning design, Paula Taylor, Colour & Trends Specialist says: ‘Our Wallpaper of the Year hones in on the striking simplicity of natural materials, complemented by subtle metallic embellishment and a trend-led colour palette for a contemporary graphic aesthetic that sits in any room of the home.’

More than just a name, we love how Reflections has an iridescent quality that will beautifully bounce light around a room. This thoughtful use of materials to masterfully work with light helps to balance the busy pattern, which can often make a space appear smaller making this perfect for even the smallest of rooms.

Reflections in Rose Gold, £40, Graham & Brown.

The print is also available in Copper and Silver colourways, both equally as beautiful with the same mix of marbling, concrete, wood grain and metallic effects.

The design is a bold move on from last year’s wallpaper of the year – Marbled Charcoal and Rose Gold. Let’s remind ourselves…

 
[Source:- IH]