D.O.M. Hotel Roma
     

D.O.M. Hotel Roma

Rome, Italy

Nestled on a street that's been home to some of the area's most important people since the Renaissance, the D.O.M. Hotel Roma offers a bridge between the old and new — not to mention an excellent night's stay. The 24-room hotel boasts glimpses at some of the original elements of the 17-century convent which it now occupies, including exposed brick walls, wooden ceilings, and blocks of marble with ancient religious inscriptions. But it mixes those with sleek furnishings, a lounge, a bistro-style restaurant complete with three original Warhol silkscreens, and a rooftop terrace bar.

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Scholz Garten
     

Scholz Garten

Austin, Texas

It's certainly not the newest or trendiest spot in Austin to grab a beer, but it is one of the most dependable. Founded by a German immigrant in 1866, Scholz Garten is a true German-style biergarten, with a large outdoor area, a stage that's frequently home to outstanding local performers, a varied menu that includes everything from German favorites to BBQ, and a healthy selection of draft beers, including a number of authentic Bavarian options. Or, as the Texas legislature put it in 1966, "a gathering place for Texans of discernment, taste, culture, erudition, epitomizing the finest tradition of magnificent German heritage."

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Westward
     

Westward

Seattle, Washington

There's no denying the nautical theme at Westward, but when you're cranking out seafood this good, it doesn't matter what the inside of the restaurant looks like. In fact, you don't even have to enjoy the excellent fare — influenced by both Northwest and Mediterranean cuisine, with many items making a stop in the wood-burning oven — inside, thanks to a large deck, fire pit, and beach area. Oh, and the cocktails are pretty terrific, too, making this an ideal spot to park your boat — they have a 150 ft. dock — and step inside for an afternoon refreshment.

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Hotel SP34
     

Hotel SP34

Copenhagen, Denmark

Yes, we know — it sounds more like a type of sunscreen than it does a hotel. But one visit to Hotel SP34 will have you forgetting all that. Situated in the old Latin Quarter, this new 118-room hotel offers clean rooms with sleek, simple designs, free Wi-Fi, three bars/eateries, including both a tapas bar and a burger joint, REN Clean skincare products in every room, a rooftop terrace, conference facilities, a cinema, a daily wine hour, and accommodations ranging from standard rooms all the way up to the view-tastic Penthouse suite. As for the origins of the name? Take a close look at the address.

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The Squeaky Bean
     

The Squeaky Bean

Denver, Colorado

Themed menus are all well and good, but they don't matter if your drinks aren't great. Thankfully, that's not an issue at The Squeaky Bean. Located in LoHi, this stylish establishment serves up some of the best drinks in town — separated into cleverly-named categories like "Drunk Uncles", "American Graffiti", and "Dean Martin Variety Show" — as well as some fantastic food that covers everything from shrimp and grits at brunch to bacon wrapped in quail for dinner.

Photos: Kenn Wilson
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Baker Thermometer
     

Baker Thermometer

Baker, California

It's been a familiar face on the drive up I-15 from LA to Vegas since it was first switched on in 1992, but for the first time in years, the Baker Thermometer is ready to spring back into action. Standing 134 feet tall — in honor of the record temperature in Death Valley on July 10, 1913 — this landmark has just hit with a $150,000 restoration, allowing it to once again report the accurate temperature, which is good, since it's a real shame to have the World's Tallest Thermometer turned off.

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Bunk Sandwiches
     

Bunk Sandwiches

Portland, Oregon

It might have an unusual name, but it makes sense, as you won't be finding any normal ol' ham-and-cheese affairs at Bunk Sandwiches. Instead, they have a chalkboard menu of inventive, hand-held fare that changes daily, but includes such bread-bound delicacies as their pork-belly Cubano and a veggie option with marinated garbanzo bean salad, feta, arugula, and hot peppers. Every sandwich comes with kettle chips, and even better, you can add bacon to any sandwich. Mmmm, Bacon.

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Hidden Treasures
     

Hidden Treasures

Topanga, California

It doesn't matter if you're looking for vintage clothing, a costume, or just a cool old knick-knack — you're likely to find it at Hidden Treasures. Beyond the store's fantastic collection of clothes from the 1970s and earlier, there's also tons of generally cool stuff, all set in an amazing nautical/pirate-themed environment. If you're looking for bargain clothes, this might not be your place, but as the saying goes, you get what you pay for — and the goods at this shop are worth every penny.

Photos: Ari Abramczyk, Carolyn Devine
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Amanoi
     

Amanoi

Ninh Thuận, Vietnam

It only makes sense that a place named after the Sanskrit-derived word for "peace" would be peaceful — and Amanoi is most certainly that. The latest in the family of upscale Aman resorts, this stunning accommodation sits in Nui Chua National Park, on a white sand beach overlooking Vinh Hy Bay. As with its sister resorts, the design of the place blends clean, modern sensibilities with local influences, with features like large, comfy beds, soaking tubs, rainfall showers, a great restaurant, an infinity pool, and, of course, great views.

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Green Mill Cocktail Lounge
     

Green Mill Cocktail Lounge

Chicago, Illinois

Yes, it has live jazz. Yes, it serves up tasty cocktails. Yes, it has a statue of Ceres in the corner. But you're not heading to the Green Mill Cocktail Lounge for any of that. You're heading there because of its history. Opened in 1907, the Green Mill was a favorite hangout for Al Capone and his henchmen, thanks to its dark atmosphere, and, legend has it, a series of tunnels underneath the joint that gave them a way to slip out of the bar unnoticed should the Feds stop in. You can even sit in Capone's favorite booth — with views of both entrances — but, unfortunately, the tunnels are off limits.

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Ala Moana Fireworks
     

Ala Moana Fireworks

Honolulu, Hawaii

It really doesn't matter what you're doing — the beaches of Hawaii make a great backdrop for almost anything. So it only stands to reason that they'd be a great place to put on a fireworks show. Indeed, the Ala Moana Fireworks display is one of the best Independence Day spectacles around. Unlike most barge-based shows, the shells for this celebration are launched from the tip of Magic Island so as to not harm the offshore reefs, and can be seen from all over Waikiki and Honolulu, making it one of the most accessible shows around.

Photos: Kyle Nishioka
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Magnolia Smokestack
     

Magnolia Smokestack

San Francisco, California

The Magnolia Brewing Company has been going strong for over 15 years on Haight, but now it's expanding into food at Magnolia Smokestack. This unique new spot in Dogpatch combines a drinkery — complete with 12-15 taps of Magnolia's best, along with a full bar — with a killer BBQ joint run by Namu Gaji chef Dennis Lee. On the food side, you'll find two smokers and two grill pits serving up brisket, short ribs, chicken sausage, and more, with flavors influenced by barbecue destinations around the world. So go in, order up some food, grab a fresh beer, and find a seat. [via]

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