Celebrate Chinese New Year in Hong Kong, cosy up in Prague, and eat your way to health and fitness in Barcelona and Jakarta
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Emma Love, Acting Editor
Chinese New Year in Hong Kong means three weeks of celebrations. Having kicked off at the end of January, they last well into this month. From must-eat foods to handcrafted decorations and even a Rooster pop-up store (this is the Chinese zodiac Year of the Cockerel, after all), our Monthly Insider feature on this important cultural festival is full of ways to mark the occasion. At Mandarin Oriental, Hong Kong and The Excelsior, there are Chinese New Year packages on offer and specially devised menus in the restaurants to match.
Food is an important factor at all Mandarin Oriental properties - in fact, the Group holds 18 Michelin stars, spread across 12 restaurants - none more so than at Mandarin Oriental, Barcelona, where chef Carme Ruscalleda, holder of seven stars, oversees her two-Michelin-starred restaurant, Moments. This month, for a forthcoming piece on Destination MO, she has taken time out of the kitchen to write about her favourite places to eat in the Catalan capital.
You can also read about popular wines, as well as food pairings, in our interview with award-winning Head Sommelier David Biraud at Mandarin Oriental, Paris; and, in our second Monthly Insider for February, find out why winter is the perfect time to explore the capital of the Czech Republic, Prague (pictured above). Cosy grand cafés, lantern-lit medieval streets and fewer people at the key attractions are reasons that immediately spring to mind. Plus, of course, the frosty conditions outside are the perfect excuse to check in for a warming treatment in Mandarin Oriental, Prague's sanctuary of wellbeing, The Spa, housed in a former monastery chapel.
For more wellbeing tips, keep a lookout for our health feature on Jakarta (online later this month). It may be a heavily populated, buzzing metropolis, but there are still tranquil spots to be found. You just need to know where to look.