Traveler’s Picks

by Caroline and Michael Ventura

Apr 2017

Michael and Caroline met in the winter of 2006. They have created photoshoots together, written for books together, made art together, and have built a home together. In 2015 they opened Calliope, a furnishing and home goods store in the NYC's West Village. They live above the shop with their dog, Darryl. 

If you could close your eyes and be somewhere else, where would you want to be?

Caroline: We just came back from a trip to the South African bush and I cannot stop thinking about it. I try to put myself there every night when I fall asleep.

Michael: A place where the desert meets the ocean.

The restaurant where you feel at home.

C: Estela in NYC. Our good friend owns it, and it's just a happy happy place every time we eat there.

M: There’s a little vegetarian Japanese place in San Francisco that I visit every time I’m there called Cha-Ya. It’s run by a bunch of older Japanese grandmas and every bite of food feels like it was made just for you.

A hotel room that makes you nostalgic.

C: We visited the Maldives together and I can still smell that green earthy smell and suntan lotion.

M: While driving across Morocco we laid over in a little port town called El Jadida and stayed at a riad that was tucked down an alley. We’ve long lost track of the name of the place but for the day and a half we spent there we felt like we were living in a bygone era of history.

A travel you could do over and over again without getting bored.

C: Rome. Always something beautiful around every corner.

M: Big Sur, California. The nature, the food, the people, it’s a special place that’ll never get old.

A dish that recently surprised you.

C: I recently reignited my love for basic mac & cheese.

Ml: I’m a sucker for raw bar and on a recent trip to London I had a plate of oysters from all around the English coastline that kinda blew my mind.

A holiday place from your childhood.

C: Palm Springs, CA. We would go every summer and each day was filled with sunshine and swimming and sunburns.

M: Bermuda. As a kid my parents would take us on a summer vacation every year and it was always somewhere beachy and warm. The pink sand, ladies in bikinis, dudes in shorts and high socks, and the virgin piña coladas were everything my 12 year old brain could handle.

If a kid asked you to take him/her on a trip, where would that be?

C: El Matador beach where I grew up and we could roll down the sand dunes and chase sea gulls and look at the starfish in the tide pools. It was my favourite place as a kid.

M: A hot air balloon ride around the world.

If you could choose a dream place to celebrate, what would that be?

C: Somewhere on a warm beach with my best friends. Mexico maybe?

M: Honestly, I’d want to spend it in my home, surrounded by the people I love.

A view you will never forget.

C: The view of Florence from San Miniato al Monte.

M: Sunsets every night in the African bush are like nature’s laser light show.

Your Meraviglia address that can’t be missing from our collection.

C: Pla de la Garsa, one of my favorite teeny tiny restaurants in Barcelona: Carrer dels Assaonadors, 13, 08003 Barcelona, Spain.

M: Café de L’Ambre in Ginza, Tokyo for probably one of the most unique coffee drinking experiences of your life.

A place you wish it was just round the corner.

C: Alex Eagle in London. Beautiful beautiful store.

M: Mont Bar in Barcelona. The food is perfect and the vibe is casual. One of my favourite spots to eat.


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