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Travel like a modern-day maharaja in India

The latest openings and events from around the world.

India – Starting Oct. 22, the Royal Sojourn – an eight-day train ride aboard the luxurious Maharajas' Express – runs round-trip from Delhi to Agra in high style. Perks include the fine-dining cabins (pack your formal wear), 24-hour butler service and swank sleeping quarters equipped with LCD TVs and air conditioning. For intrepid travellers, however, the requisite champagne toast at the Taj Mahal is easily trumped by off-train excursions that include spotting ghariyal (a thin-snouted Indian crocodile) while cruising on the Chambal River and participating in an elephant polo match in Jaipur. Rates start from $6,760 (U.S.) a person. rirtl.com

Dress up and dine on the city by the bay

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San Francisco – Modelled after Paris's Dîner en Blanc, Le Dîner à San Francisco brings 2,500 revellers, dressed in their best all-white attire, to an unprecedented outdoor feast. Here's how it works: RSVP online for up to four friends. After a few days, you'll receive an official invitation with hints as to where your table will be laid (the location for the picnic is kept top secret until 24 hours before the main event on Oct. 14). It's up to you to bring your own chairs, place settings, tablecloths, food, drink and garbage bags for the clean-up afterward. Feeling lazy? For $175 (U.S.), local restaurant Le Garage legaragebistrosausalito.com can provide catered picnic baskets stocked with champagne, meats, cheeses and desserts for four people. ledinerasanfrancisco.info

A ryokan that's right for New York

New York – Tucked in the heart of Chelsea's art gallery district in what used to be a parking garage, the newly opened 56-room Hôtel Americano marks Grupo Habita's foray into the U.S. hotel scene. (The hotel developer is best known for developing two of Mexico City's stylish urban retreats, Hotel Habita and Condesa df). Paris-based interior designer Arnaud Montigny drew inspiration from his time in Tokyo to craft a New York-friendly ryokan (a traditional Japanese inn). Guest suites are minimalist, yet functional with wooden platform beds, all-white walls and iPads with an edited list of local restaurants and attractions. More novel features include denim bathrobes, room service that comes in a bento box and a terrace restaurant that serves Greek food in summer and Argentine in winter. hotel-americano.com

Discover the next big designer

London – Looking for the next big fashion label? Drop by College Shop, a temporary emporium near Soho's Carnaby Street, and peruse the collection of frocks, shoes, jewellery and more designed by the brightest young graduates from London College of Fashion. Their names may not sound familiar, but their creations are unique and reasonably priced from £20 to £400 ($31 to $624). Each piece is signed by the designer. If you can't find anything that fits, pick up a special-edition College Shop organic cotton canvas bag and illustrated postcards that make for great souvenirs. The store is open until Sept. 28. www.fashion.arts.ac.uk



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