Chef Simone Falco has Classic Neapolitan Style on His Plate and in His Closet

first_imgSimone Falco was born in Naples on October 27, 1974, into a family of sportsman and entrepreneurs. When Simone grew older he become a rugby player and obtained a PhD from the University of Naples Federico II, one of the oldest Universities in Europe. Since he was very young, Simone has worked in the family company to learn the proper skills needed to run a successful restaurant business, leading into the launch and development of several new restaurant locations in Italy and abroad. Rossopomodoro in New York City’s West Village – an outpost location of the Rossopomodoro’s U.S. operations at Eataly New York (Flatiron & Financial District), Chicago, Boston, and San Paolo – has been carrying on the tradition ever since its opening in 2014.Falco, Chef & Owner of Rossopomodoro, has designed the restaurant’s menu to embody the brands manifesto and presents dishes that are simple, seasonal, straightforward, healthy and flavorful –and he goes way beyond just pizza & pasta. Simone’s personal passions include interests in health, wellness, and horseback riding. These passions inspired him to own a restaurant where he could eat several times a week and still feel as if he was eating at home. Simone would describe his personal style as classic Neapolitan.Jeans: When I wear jeans on the weekend, I also wear Balenciaga or Citizens of Humanity.Shirts: I either wear James Perse t-shirts or custom made button downs from Barba.Pants: I would describe the Brunello Cucinelli pants I wear old school meets new school.Suits: Neapolitan cut. The week day suits I wear are custom made suits from Napoli. I travel to Italy to get new suits fitted about every quarter. I like to have about 2-4 fresh suits a year.Shoes: I wear the Mister Casual shoes from Belgium Shoes about 320 days a year.Accessories: I wear Borsalino summer and winter hats. My favorite watches are Patek Phillippe. I also adore the cufflinks my wife gave me with my initials engraved on them.Outerwear: If it is very cold out I wear my Canada Goose. I also wear my trench coat from Barbour often.Favorite cologne: I wear both Ultraviolet Paco Rabanne and Extreme Tom Ford.Favorite app: My favorite app is NFL mobile. I am a big Giants fan.Favorite piece of technology: My outdoor speaker system. Next style/gear purchase: I have a few purchases on the horizon – I would love to start wearing pinned shirts, buy an Alfa Romeo Spider October 74 car (the month and date of my birthday) and another horse. Horseback riding is one of my favorite activities and passions. Iron Chef Morimoto Continues Building His Empire with Easy Cup Sake World Beard Champion Madison Rowley is Cutting His Beard to Fight Addiction The Burger Show’s Alvin Cailan Shares His Burger-Making Secrets Editors’ Recommendations NASCAR Driver Brad Keselowski on Crashing, Winning, and Creating a Legacy Surf Legend Laird Hamilton Has His Own Natural Supplement Brand last_img read more

Cynar is the Artichoke-Based Spirit You Need to Know About

first_img Easy 3-Ingredient Cocktails You Can Master Editors’ Recommendations Cynar—pronounced chee-nar (not sigh-nar, chai-nar, or any of the other ways that the friend that always wants to be better than you has previously assured you of)—is an Italian amaro that is made with, among other 13 total herbs and botanicals, artichokes. The name Cynar comes from the botanical name for the artichoke, Cynar scolymus, and, since its creation in the 1950s by Venetian Angelo Dalle Molle, the spirit has been held in varying levels of esteem the world over.While it is made with artichoke leaves, Cynar is not an artichoke-flavored spirit (sorry, spinach and artichoke dip loving people out there). The overall flavor is bittersweet, making it somewhat easier to sip compared to other digestifs out there.When it comes to ABV, Cynar is on the lower side—a mere 16.5%–but if you are looking for the same flavor with a little more backbone, Cynar also has a 70-proof version (named, fittingly, Cynar 70 Proof) for your consumption.Below, we’re pulled together some of the best ways to enjoy Cynar. We’re big fans of it here at The Manual, and we think you will be, too.Drink it StraightAs with many amari, Cynar is best consumed—at least according to the Italians who first made it—straight. Pour yourself an ounce or two, and sip it. Adding an ice cube can’t hurt, either. Another fun thing to try with your straight Cynar is to add a few drops (3-4 is all you need) of saline solution. Just as with cooking, the salt will bring out the other flavors present in the spirit.If you want to extend your Cynar, you can also think about adding club soda, tonic water, or even orange juice, as they do in certain parts of Europe.Drink it in CocktailsCynar, especially in the last decade or so, has really come to be defined by its versatility in cocktails.  Here, you’ll see two different types of cocktail that both work to highlight how the bitter flavors of the liqueur work well with a variety of other ingredients.Cynar Julep 1 ½ oz Cynar1 oz Apple Cider½ oz Cinnamon Syrup¾ oz Lemon JuiceGinger BeerMethod: Mix Cynar, cider, cinnamon syrup, and lemon juice in a cocktail shaker. Add ice and shake. Strain into a glass and top with ginger beer.Cheers! 6 Classic Gin Cocktail Recipes You Can’t Live Without 6 Essential Scotch Cocktails That You Need to Know 7 Fall Cocktail Recipes to Enjoy With Cooler Weather 5 Classic Whiskey Cocktails You Should Know How to Make 2 oz. Cynar1/2 oz. Simple Syrup1/2 oz. Fresh Lemon Juice1/2 oz. Fresh Grapefruit Juice2 Dashes Angostura Bitters2 oz. Soda Water12 Mint LeavesMethod: In a tall glass, add mint and all ingredients except soda water and bitters. Gently muddle, add ice, then soda and top with bitters.Carciofi Shandy(Created by Sofia Present, August Laura, NYC, pictured above)last_img read more

How Steven Grasse Went from Mad Man to Distiller and Never Looked Back

first_img“I hate advertising and I hate everyone in it,” Steven Grasse, 52, says. When asked about the early stages of his career, it felt as though he was reliving some intense trauma. As a former ad-man and current small-batch liquor proprietor, Grasse couldn’t wait to be his own boss. At 23, he founded his own agency, then Gyro Worldwide, now Quaker City Mercantile, sparking an earth-shaking, two decades of evidently unsatisfying, advertising magic.“Once you get the account, you start losing it right away,” he laments. “It’s like renovating an apartment you don’t own.”At the helm of his agency, he sought permanence, investing in nearly invisible companies and pulling new ones out of thin air. Whether he was transforming Puma into a worldwide brand or revitalizing New England’s historic beer darling, Narragansett, Grasse was a force to be reckoned with.“I was most appreciative of his passion for rejecting the status quo,” says Lindsay Prociw, Category Director of Mixable Spirits at William Grant & Sons. As the Director of Innovation, she worked tirelessly with Grasse to put Hendrick’s Gin on the map. “His long history and experience [with Hendrick’s], combined with his thirst for staying modern and relevant in his interests…has made him someone I often go to directly for [perspective].”William Grant & Sons, needing a new gin and rum to add to its roster, approached Grasse. His rock ‘n roll sensibilities led to the rise of the whimsical Hendrick’s Gin and Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum. Grasse would later churn out Art in the Age, an experimental spirits and lifestyle brand catering to adventurous professional and amateur mixologists alike.A history buff above all else, Grasse’s love of Transcendentalism and disdain for advertising pushed him all the way into the spirits world. He essentially purchased the town of Tamworth, New Hampshire, lured there by its pure waters and history-steeped streets (Thoreau frequently summered there), and established the Tamworth Distilling. Though initially meeting some pushback from the locals (many of whom were alive during Prohibition), the distillery and its sprawling grounds has drawn many millennials to the rural locale and employed a bevy of local farmers.Blue Lion Chicorée Liqueur Tamworth Distilling“People want to know where their food comes from,” Grasse says. “But then they go home and order everything on Amazon.” He goes on to liken major tech corporations to “modern-day robber barons.” Though Grasse tries to capture the magic of Transcendentalist idols found in nature rather than industrialization, his penchant for pushing the envelope remains steadfast.With products like Von Humboldt’s Turmeric Cordial and Art in the Age’s Black Trumpet Blueberry Cordial, Tamworth Distillery piques the curiosity of even the most habitual drinkers, but it doesn’t stop there. One of Grasse’s favorite liquors is an Art in the Age Beet Root Vodka which almost tastes like horse manure, so “you know it’s real.” Tamworth distillers are also playing with ideas for fermented goat’s milk which “smells like a dirty sock but tastes like perfume.” You know, your dream drink.Make no mistake, Tamworth is Grasse’s baby (an Arkansas satellite is still gestating). Utterly committed to his vision and supporting the town it resides in, Grasse is primarily interested in the happiness of the individual. Whether that’s just him, Tamworth residents, or fans of his niche alcohol, you can be sure of one thing:“It’s not for sale.”Berry Basil Gimlet2 oz Art in the Age Black Trumpet Blueberry1 oz gin½ oz fresh lime juice½ oz honeyFresh basil leavesMethod: Muddle honey, basil, and lime juice in cocktail shaker. Add ice, gin and AITA Black Trumpet Blueberry and shake. Strain into a chilled coupe glass, and garnish with a basil leaf. Editors’ Recommendations 11 Best Gins for a Refreshing Gin and Tonic The Best American Gin 6 Classic Gin Cocktail Recipes You Can’t Live Without The Best American Liqueur 9 Best Spirits For Spiked Apple Ciderlast_img read more

The Very Best of “The Mother City,” Cape Town, South Africa

first_imgThe glossy brochures for every travel destination promise “Something for everyone!” Yet, few deliver. Cape Town is a rare exception. As the oldest town in South Africa, the beloved “Mother City” is the hippest, most vibrant, most cosmopolitan urban center on the continent, book-ended by a dramatic, craggy mountain range to the south and the Atlantic Ocean to the north and west. Foodies, adventure-seekers, historians, culture-lovers, and hard-partiers — there’s something for every brand of traveler. Of the countless reasons to visit South Africa’s cultural capital, here are our favorites.Must-DoIt’s impossible to understate just how much South Africa in general and Cape Town, in particular, offer travelers. There’s a reason — many reasons, actually — that it’s among our top five favorite all-around destinations in the world. No matter what sort of traveler you fancy yourself, here’s what not to miss.For Thrill SeekersThe list of adventure experiences in and around Cape Town could fill an encyclopedia-sized tome. On the city’s outskirts, Signal Hill and Lion’s Head are home to some of the best paragliding opportunities in South Africa. Table Mountain, the city’s most famous natural icon, is a worthy round-trip by cable car or, for the more adventurous, via an ascent hike followed by abseiling 1,000 meters down on the world’s highest commercial abseiling adventure. The nearby beaches are an ideal spot to strap into sail-powered Blokarts which are capable of screaming across the sand at more than 60 miles per hour. If land-based adventures aren’t wild enough for you, Cape Town is among the world’s best destinations for caged shark diving. Cape Adventure Zone can hook you up with guided single- and multi-day treks just outside the city.For Nature LoversNot far from the city center, Boulders Beach is a tiny, protected cove with soft, sloped dunes dramatically dotted with massive granite boulders. The beautiful, turquoise water is pristine, but cold — making it a fine spot for beach-goers who aren’t that concerned with swimming. But, the “big get” is the beach’s large colony of endangered African penguins. Most visitors are surprised to learn that Africa is home to the notoriously cold weather creatures. But, thousands of the tuxedoed birds share the sand with plenty of wide-eyed human visitors. A series of wooden boardwalks wind through the boulders and the bird’s colony allowing for extremely close-up photo opportunities. For a quieter, more tourist-free alternative, head to Stony Point (en route to Hermanus). The beach there is a bit more rustic, but the larger penguin colonies more than make up for it.For Wine LoversThe numerous wine regions that dot South Africa’s countryside are set amid a perfect growing climate that makes for some of the best wine in the world. Grab a rental car and day trip around the peninsula. In particular, head south away from the city to the waterfront and Camps Bay to the beautiful gardens at Kirstenbosch. Along the way, pit-stop at the wineries along the Constantia Wine Route like Eagles Nest and Klein Constantia. The quaint seaside village of Kalk Bay is an ideal spot to break for lunch and stroll among its galleries and shops. The Winelands are another must-visit for vino lovers as the terroir in and around Stellenbosch makes for fantastic reds.Constantia Wine Route/FacebookFor HistoriansSouth Africa’s history is as diverse and fascinating as it is heartbreaking. For visitors to Cape Town, the most concise way to gain an appreciation for the country’s past is at Robben Island. Situated less than seven miles offshore in Table Bay, this notorious island prison once housed some of the country’s most notable prisoners including Walter Sisulu, Jacob Zuma (the country’s current president) and, of course, Nelson Mandela. A guided tour includes first-hand accounts from an ex-political prisoner who can provide keen insights into the harsh life of South Africans under the Apartheid regime.For FoodiesWithin just twenty years, Cape Town has become almost unrecognizable. The evolution from its dark and sordid past into an ultra-hip, cosmopolitan destination is due in some part to a thriving gourmet food and dining scene. The sheer number of new restaurants and diverse cuisines is dizzying. For comfort food done right, head to Constantia’s locally popular The Brasserie. Solid burgers, thin crust pizza, and a fantastic lamb shank & mash dish are all served amid a relaxed dining room with a whiff of rustic sophistication.Photo/The BrasserieIf it’s gourmet international fare you’re after, Mondiall Kitchen & Bar pulls inspiration from American, Italian, and French cuisines with daily specials that feature everything from Mexican to Japanese to South African. They pour a fantastic Paloma (el Jimador and grapefruit topped with soda), but the House Lassi (a non-alcoholic Indian refresher with live yogurt, cardamom, rose water, honey, and cinnamon) is worth a sample.For decidedly non-local fare, head to Addis in Cape. This Ethiopian eatery is as authentic North African as it gets, including communal eating and traditional entrees like homemade wot (stew) poured into large sourdough pancakes called injera.Ethiopian FoodWhat to SkipThe coast and beaches, like Camps Bay and the four Clifton beaches, around Cape Town are postcard-worthy. But, the important fact the tourism office neglects to convey to visitors is that the water is positively freezing year-round (there’s a reason all the sane beach-going Capetonians wear wetsuits, and the above-mentioned penguins find the water just delightful). Head instead to the Indian Ocean suburbs that line the False Bay coast where warm waters and the beautiful beaches at Muizenberg and Fish Hoek provide far better swimming opportunities (just beware of the “dinosaur-sized” sharks).Where to StayLike any world-class city, Cape Town has its fair share of chain hotels. But, it also boasts a solid collection of one-of-a-kind boutique and luxury alternatives. Situated along bustling Long Street, Grand Daddy Hotel offers some of the city’s most original lodging. While the interior floors feature lovely designer accommodations, it’s what’s on the hotel’s roof that’s most noteworthy. The Rooftop Trailer Park Experience is unlike any we’ve seen anywhere in the world. Guests take a vintage elevator to the hotel’s top floor and step into a purpose-built, rooftop trailer park. Seven pristinely restored Airstream trailers each feature a unique themed decor from the vineyard-inspired Winelands to Rooftop Safari to City Flights (adorned with the owner’s own aviation maps and inspired by their love of travel). All boast air-conditioning and a mini-fridge, plus an outdoor patio set and an actual USPS mailbox.The Silo Hotel Entrance/The SiloThe Silo hasn’t yet opened its doors. But, when it does in September, it will be among the most beautiful and uniquely designed hotels in Cape Town. Built on the top six floors of a once-abandoned, 90-year-old grain silo, the 28 rooms will feature stunning eclectic interiors with one-of-a-kind “pillowed” windows that billow gently outward like a glass and steel balloon. The rooftop will house a panoramic sundeck with a glass-sided pool and a gourmet restaurant. The silo’s reconstruction will also feature the brand new Zeitz MOCAA — Africa’s largest contemporary art museum. March: There’s no better month for event-lovers. The annual Cape Town Carnival brings the city’s own colorful, unique twist on traditional Carnival celebrations — all with a distinct focus on  African heritage, culture, and diversity (tickets on sale each December). The Cape Town International Jazz Festival is among the top five events of its kind worldwide. In early March 2018, the festival will celebrate its near-twentieth anniversary with more than 50 local and international acts.May: March through May signifies the start of the annual grape harvest, when tourists can often participate in the gathering, juicing, and of course tasting process for the year’s vino. May’s Constantia Food & Wine Festival is one of the area’s largest celebrations, featuring scores of local wine and gourmet food vendors. Pack Your Bags (When to Go)The main consideration for North American travelers is that Cape Town’s seasons are reversed: the summer months correlate to our winter, and vice-versa. So, June and July are the coldest and often wettest months of the year. That said, there really isn’t a bad time to visit weather-wise. All of South Africa enjoys fairly temperate year-round weather.Budget travelers should keep an eye toward the March-May and September-November time-frames. During these “shoulder seasons,” the tourist crowds thin out, the weather is more mild and predictable, and prices are substantially lower than in peak season.If it’s specific events you’re after, here are Cape Town’s most notable: Editors’ Recommendations 11 Under-the-Radar Cities in Canada Worth Exploring The Best Campgrounds Near Major U.S. Cities center_img On the Road with Mikah Meyer, the First Person to Visit Every National Park Site in One Trip Capetown Carnival 2017July Through September: After the winter solstice, whale watching season begins in the waters of the South Atlantic. Head to the charming fishing village of Hermanus (an easy day trip from the city) and witness southern right whales basking in the crystal clear waters of Walker Bay. The town boasts plenty of quaint restaurants, shops, and galleries as well, making it a worthwhile destination in its own right. The Hermanus Whale Festival in late September is a celebration of all things marine mammal with live music, art gallery installations, stand-up comedy shows, and a half-marathon.November: Cape Town might not top your list of “must-visit whisky destinations,” but it should. Every November, the annual Whisky Live Festival attracts more visitors than any similar event in the world. Over the course of three days, attendees can sample nearly 180 brands from Scotland, Ireland, Japan, Wales, and beyond.December: For 2017, the Ultra-Trail World Tour will make its debut in Cape Town. The rugged landscape surrounding the city makes for the perfect host for this brutally challenging landrace. Runners will travel between 35-100 kilometers (depending on their chosen track) across Lion’s Head, Signal Hill, Table Mountain, the Constantia Winelands, and Devil’s Peak. The terrain is unforgiving and the weather can range from sub-freezing to more than 90 degrees in the heat of the day. An Introduction to the Fine Sport of Bouldering If You Haven’t Visited the Kentucky Bourbon Trail, What Are You Waiting For? last_img read more

Air Ticket Arena Lets You Bid on Last-Minute Airline Seats

first_img The Opus OP15′ Is a Tricked-Out, Off-Road-Ready Travel Trailer Major Airline Admits to Monitoring Passengers Via Onboard Cameras Editors’ Recommendations Learn Guitar (and Don’t Give Up) With the Fender Play App Hotels are never fully occupied, “sold out” concerts are often full of vacant seats, and car rental lots are rarely empty. Thankfully for last-minute folks like us, there’s Hotwire, StubHub, and Priceline, respectively. However, until recently, no one had yet figured out how to unload unsold airline seats at the last minute. Enter Air Ticket Arena.The premise of U.K.-based Air Ticket Arena is simple: to provide last-minute fliers the option to bid on unsold air travel. Taking part in the site’s auction process is straightforward. Simply download the free mobile app (currently Android-only) and register for free. After initial verification, you’re ready to bid. Select your departure and destination cities, your travel dates, and the number of tickets you’d like. You can optionally select specific airlines you’d prefer to fly, if any. Lastly, you’ll confirm how much you’re willing to spend on each ticket (prices are in euros, so remember to convert to U.S. dollars if that applies to you).center_img Could You Handle a Marathon, 20-Hour Nonstop Flight? This Black Boathouse Is a Luxurious Retreat on a Small Island in Norway The only caveat is that you must bid within 14 days of your date of departure. The service also only works for trips which are 14 days or less in length. But who in the States is getting more than two weeks of vacation nowadays anyway?Approximately 48 hours before your flight’s scheduled departure, the airline will determine the number of unsold seats and the rock-bottom price they’re willing to accept for each. If your maximum bid meets their minimum sale price, you’re in. You’ll be automatically confirmed on that flight and receive an electronic ticket via email. Just keep in mind that you likely won’t be earning any frequent flier or status miles for any flights booked through Air Ticket Arena.Half-empty planes — or, in some cases, fully empty planes — are not uncommon, yet airlines are stubborn about not undercutting themselves. It seems like a matter of willful pride that they’ve been happy to fly with empty seats rather than auction them off to the highest bidder. Until now.Air Ticket Arena is available primarily through a free Android app and, secondarily, through a web-based interface. Be warned that the entire process feels a little “half-baked.” Nevertheless, we’re pretty stoked that mainstream airfare auctions are finally on the horizon.last_img read more

Education Ministry to Implement Policy for School-Aged Mothers

first_imgThe Ministry of Education is moving to implement a policy, to make it mandatory for schools to allow school-aged mothers to resume their education after childbirth.This was disclosed by Information Minister, Senator the Hon. Sandrea Falconer, at the weekly Jamaica House press briefing, held at the Office of the Prime Minister, on June 6.Miss Falconer informed that Cabinet has approved the policy for mandatory re-integration of all teenaged mothers into the formal school system, following the completion of an intermediary education programme.She said the policy is intended to allow the girls to continue their education after the birth of a child and not be barred from the school system.“The schools will now be advised that places temporarily vacated by a student during a period of pregnancy should be retained for the student’s return to school, following the completion of an approved transitional programme,” she informed.The education regulations provide that a girl who becomes pregnant shall leave the formal school system during the period of her pregnancy.Under those stipulations, the Minister of Education has the discretion to facilitate the re-entry of such girls into educational institutions.Senator Falconer noted that no policy framework existed before the exercise of this discretion.“Instead, schools have, at times, misinterpreted the provision to treat the girls as absent from the school permanently,” she said.The Minister said the new policy will provide the same flexibility to students wishing to attend a different school after they have had a child.Contact: Athaliah Reynolds-Bakerlast_img read more

Prime Minister Lauds Work of RuJohn Foundation

first_imgPrime Minister, the Most Hon. Portia Simpson Miller, has lauded the philanthropic work of the RuJohn Foundation, which targets the social upliftment of Jamaica’s youth.The Foundation was established 10 years ago in honour of Ruth and John Tulloch, the Jamaican grandparents of the Chief Executive Officer, Andrew Bachelor and President, Christina Bachelor. Its mission is to provide the necessary educational tools for rural and inner-city schools throughout Jamaica and select U.S. cities, and stresses the importance of hard work and perseverance through athleticsOver the years it has provided scholarships and staged athletic celebrity sports camp for students, especially in western Jamaica and now Kingston. Additionally, the Foundation has provided school supplies, athletic gear, computer equipment and funding for educational programmes.Mrs. Simpson Miller, who was addressing the Awards Banquet of the Foundation at the Knutsford Court Hotel on June 23, applauded the sincerity and steadfast commitment of the Foundation in staging the annual camps and ceremonies, which have been inspiring young people in and around Kingston and Montego Bay.“Any contribution to the youth of the country is a contribution to the development of the country; and any contribution to education is a contribution to the present and future of the country, Mrs. Simpson Miller said.She welcomed and thanked the many sports stars, actors and actresses who are participating in this year’s staging of the celebrity camps.The event saw some 25 students and schools being awarded scholarships, cash, computers, sporting equipment and school furniture valuing millions of dollars.The top prize of the evening was the Simpson Miller Award presented to Miltonia Thompson, who received $500,000 and a mini iPad. Other awardees included: Paul Jerome Jackson and Sheena Campbell who copped the Bachelor Award worth $300,000 each and mini iPads; and Oleaq Richards, Shadai Miller and Louisa Anna Taylor, who received scholarships worth $150,000 each and mini iPads.The award for outstanding leadership in and out of school was presented to Joel Nomdarkham of Kingston College, who received $320,000 and a plaque. The youngster was stunned by the cash award which was only revealed on the night, and expressed his appreciation.“It’s really an amazing feeling to be here (on stage). All my life I have been helping people and to know that I am blessed in such a way is truly amazing. I am most appreciative of this award,” he said.Five other students received the RuJohn Foundation award of $20,000 each and lap top computers to assist in their studies at college. They are: Decodia Miller, Herbert Morrison Technical; Javanni Waugh, Kingston College; Sherdeana Brooks and Devonie Bernard of Rusea’s High; and Lij tau Thompson of Manning’s High School.Kingston College received a donation of US$2,000, presented by Byron Bachelor, a Director of the Foundation who attended the school.Some 13 other schools received furniture, sporting equipment and other gifts which were presented by several sports and television celebrities who are part of this year’s camp. Among the schools benefitting are: Whitfield Town All Age; Bridgeport High; Rusea’s High; Calabar High; Manning’s High; Waterford High; Copper Basic School; Mt. Nebo School; Excelsior High; Runaway Bay Heart Academy; Herbert Morrison High; Hope Fellowship and Spanish Town High.Among those attending the evening’s ceremony were: Jamaica’s Ambassador to the US, Stephen Vascianne; television stars, Raven Symone, Lance Gross, Robert Ri’chard, Jussie Smollett, Lamorne Morris, and Iman Crosson; model, Camille McDonald; American football stars, Darius Butler and Leonard Weaver; NBA players, Andray Blatche and John Salmon; and dancer, Amanda Robinson, among many others.Contact: Andrea Brahamlast_img read more

Risk Mitigation Capacities of Four Communities Being Strengthened

first_imgThe disaster resilience and risk mitigation capacities of four communities are being boosted, under a project to be implemented by the Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management (ODPEM), at a cost of $6 million.The project, ‘Management of Slope Stability in Communities (MoSSaiC)’, primarily entails drain infrastructure improvement works, among other activities, aimed at reducing flooding, and improving slope stability to curtail the incidence of land slippage, and other occurrences resulting in dislocation for the residents.Approximately 20,000 residents will benefit from the undertaking in the targeted communities where the project will be undertaken as a pilot, beginning in the next few months. These are Harbour Heights, Melbrook Heights, and Bedward Gardens in St. Andrew; and Breastworks, in Portland.[RELATED: Bill to be Tabled to Boost Disaster Fund]Funded through the World Bank with financing from the Japan Social Development Fund (JSDF), the project is slated for execution over 12 months by the National Works Agency (NWA).A contract for the work was signed by ODPEM’s Acting Director General, Richard Thompson, and NWA Chief Executive Officer, E.G. Hunter, during a brief ceremony at ODPEM’s Haining Road offices, in Kingston, on June 25.Senior Director for Mitigation, Planning and Research at ODPEM, Kareema Aikens-Mitchell, informed that the communities are the first beneficiaries of the programme, and outlined the rationale for their selection.“We had a number of criteria that we used to evaluate the need. Because (the undertaking) is looking at improving landslide risk in certain communities…you had to have high density, and we can clearly see that in the communities that we are working with. There has to be some element of social vulnerability. Also, we had to be working with a particular slope gradient, where landslide risk is prominent,” she explained.Mrs. Aikens-Mitchell said the work will see the construction of main drains, intercept drains, and feeder drains, among other features.“At the end of the project, we hope to replicate the methodology across other communities in Jamaica,” she said.For his part, Environmental Engineer at the NWA, Dr. Mark Richards, indicated that the agency has commenced surveys in the project areas and will shortly be “going into the design phase” for the project plans being drafted.“We expect to be in the communities within a few months, so once the designs are complete and we get contractors on board, then actual work will start,” he assured.[RELATED: Labour Minister says All in Place for Active Hurricane Season]In his remarks, Mr. Thompson pointed to ODPEM’s “role and responsibility” in ensuring that “our communities are more resilient.”He underscored that “this community-based landslide risk reduction project is part of a bigger framework as it relates to building disaster-resilient communities.”Mr. Hunter said the NWA welcomed the opportunity to partner with ODPEM in executing the project. Noting that the agencies are “usually united” in national disaster recovery efforts, he pointed out that “it is good to see that we are now engaged in a mitigation effort.”He assured that the NWA is committed to “delivering this project on time, within budget, and in accordance with stipulated specifications.”Contact: Douglas McIntoshlast_img read more

Access to Information Act to be Amended

first_img The Director is encouraging persons to utilise their right to know, under the Act. A Cabinet submission highlighting reforms to the Access to Information Act, is to be presented to Parliament by the end of the third quarter of the financial year.Director of the Access to Information (ATI) Unit at the Office of the Prime Minister, Damion Cox, says the reforms are part of the recommendations made by a Joint Select Committee of Parliament which carried out a review of the Access to Information Act in 2011.Speaking at a recent Jamaica Information Service (JIS) ‘Think Tank’, at the agency’s head office in Kingston, Mr. Cox said amendments to the Act are being legislated, “to ensure that public authorities apply a public interest test in relation to more categories of exemptions.”A public interest test, he said, is the process whereby public authorities are expected to identify any relevant public interest.Explaining further how the exemptions work, Mr. Cox informed that a public interest test is only applied to two sections of the ATI Act. Section 19 of the Act stipulates that an exemption can be applied to government deliberative process, while section 21 mandates that the test be applied to documents dealing with any historical, archaeological, anthropological and natural resources, as well as national monuments.Similarly, he advised that the exemptions protect “things relating to personal privacy and national security, as well as commercially sensitive information of public and private entities.”Mr. Cox also added that the Act therefore, “seeks to balance the public interest in terms of those documents that can be readily released and those that an exemption can be applied to.”Meanwhile, the Director is encouraging persons to utilise their right to know, under the Act. He noted that everyone has a right to access government information, since the passage of the legislation.“The Act provides for proactive disclosure and we are looking to strengthen that. Where we are right now, in terms of routine disclosure, is a far way from where we were prior to this Act being introduced as part of the transparency and open governance framework,” Mr. Cox said.He added that the aim of the legislation and its implementation is to ensure that Jamaica is conforming to international standards.Mr. Cox also pointed out that the global move, in terms of open data, is far greater than just gaining access to information that is available.“It is how we can use the vast data that government collects to create applications that can provide citizens with good services,” he explained, while pointing out that this is what pertains in many other jurisdictions.The Act, which was passed in 2002, gives Jamaican citizens and individuals across the world the opportunity to access official government documents, while promoting freedom of information. Reforms are part of the recommendations made by a Joint Select Committee of Parliament. Story Highlights Reforms to the Access to Information Act, is to be presented to Parliament by the end of the third quarter of the financial year.last_img read more

Registration of Political Parties Begins Jan. 2, 2018

first_img In addition, the Prime Minister informed that amendments to the Act, which deal with campaign financing, will come into effect on March 1, 2018, and that the Campaign Finance Regulations, 2017 will also come into effect on that date. The Regulations, which falls under the Representation of the People Act, provides a framework for the registration and deregistration of political parties, and also facilitates a system whereby an accurate and up-to-date record can be kept on each political party. Registration of political parties will begin on January 2 next year, Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness, has announced.In a Statement to the House on Wednesday (December 6), the Prime Minister informed that the Electoral Commission of Jamaica (ECJ) is to formally start the registration process on this date, in keeping with the Political Parties Registration Regulations, 2017.The Regulations, which falls under the Representation of the People Act, provides a framework for the registration and deregistration of political parties, and also facilitates a system whereby an accurate and up-to-date record can be kept on each political party.In addition, the Prime Minister informed that amendments to the Act, which deal with campaign financing, will come into effect on March 1, 2018, and that the Campaign Finance Regulations, 2017 will also come into effect on that date.The Representation of the People Act provides for the registration, regulation, and funding of political parties.The legislation makes it mandatory for a political party to be registered if it is going to contest an election.It also deals with how individuals and organisations can contribute to political parties and candidates, and stipulations regarding the disclosure of the contributions as well as penalties for false and non-disclosures. Registration of political parties will begin on January 2 next year, Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness, has announced. Story Highlightslast_img read more

Jamaica Seeks to Increase Voice on Financial Matters in Caribbean

first_img The CFATF is an organisation of 25 States of the Caribbean Basin, Central and South America that have agreed to implement common countermeasures to address money laundering. Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Finance and the Public Service, Hon. Fayval Williams, says Jamaica is taking steps to increase its voice in the Caribbean on matters relating to the financial sector.In that regard, Mrs. Williams is to head a Jamaican delegation to the Caribbean Financial Action Task Force (CFATF) to accelerate the country’s representation to the body.The CFATF is an organisation of 25 States of the Caribbean Basin, Central and South America that have agreed to implement common countermeasures to address money laundering.Addressing the opening of the 7th Annual Anti-Money Laundering/Counter-Financing of Terrorism Conference, at The Jamaica Pegasus hotel in New Kingston on Tuesday (October 2), Mrs. Williams informed that Jamaica has sought and obtained a seat on the CFATF’s influential Steering Committee to increase its participation in the work of that body and, consequently, the wider Financial Action Task Force (FATF) global network.The FATF is an intergovernmental organisation based in France, which was established to combat money laundering and terrorism financing.“I will seek to advance certain issues that are of benefit to Jamaica, including de-risking issues, regulatory regimes for emerging technologies, and financial inclusion,” Mrs. Williams noted.In the meantime, the Minister said the Government is continuing its work to reform and strengthen Jamaica’s anti-money laundering/counter-financing of terrorism framework to comply with global standards.“Currently, new amendments are being proposed to the Proceeds of Crime Act, the Terrorism Prevention Act and the United Nations Security Council Resolution (Implementation) Act; as well as to the Microcredit Act. These amendments will address technical deficiencies outlined in the Mutual Evaluation Report of Jamaica carried out by the CFATF, and will complement enacted legislation and amendments,” Mrs. Williams said.She noted that it is critical that these laws be passed by next May, “to demonstrate to the FATF our commitment to meet the global standards”.Mrs. Williams praised the organisers of the conference for their consistency in “keeping the critical issue of (banking) compliance front and centre”.“Banking compliance both strengthens and protects Jamaica’s financial system whilst contributing to law-enforcement efforts in gathering the intelligence and evidence necessary to uncover economic crime,” she said.The two-day conference, which is being held under the theme ‘Compliance: Keeping Pace to Stay Ahead’, seeks to provide participants with sound institutional strategies to stay ahead of the game in the effort to protect clients, institutions and the country in general, against money laundering and terrorism financing.The annual event targets anti-money laundering/counter-financing of terrorism compliance practitioners from the deposit-taking and non-deposit-taking financial institutions; attorneys-at-law; front-line staff; internal and external auditors from the local and regional financial sectors; real estate practitioners; gaming industry personnel; accountants; law enforcement and regulators.The meeting is being hosted by the Jamaica Bankers Association (JBA) in collaboration with the Jamaica Institute of Financial Services (JIFS). In that regard, Mrs. Williams is to head a Jamaican delegation to the Caribbean Financial Action Task Force (CFATF) to accelerate the country’s representation to the body. Story Highlights Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Finance and the Public Service, Hon. Fayval Williams, says Jamaica is taking steps to increase its voice in the Caribbean on matters relating to the financial sector.last_img read more

Robert Morgan Appointed Government Senator and Parliamentary Secretary

first_imgRobert Nesta Morgan was sworn in as a Government Senator and Parliamentary Secretary this afternoon (May 9) at King’s House.Mr. Morgan, who was the Director of Communications and Public Affairs at the Office of the Prime Minister, will fill the seat in the Upper House left vacant following the resignation of the former Education, Youth and Information Minister, Ruel Reid in March.Governor General, His Excellency the Most Hon. Sir Patrick Allen, who conducted the brief swearing-in exercise, said that by accepting the Prime Minister’s invitation, Mr. Morgan has indicated his willingness to commit himself to serve Jamaica and the bicameral legislative process.Governor General, His Excellency The Most Hon. Sir Patrick Allen (right) presents newly appointed Government Senator and Parliamentary Secretary, Robert Nesta Morgan, with his Instrument of Appointment during a swearing-in ceremony held at King’s House on May 9.“Your contribution, as Parliamentary Secretary, will assist the Prime Minister in the realisation of the policy programmes and objectives of the Government,” the Governor-General said.In his response, Senator Morgan expressed appreciation to Prime Minister the Most Hon. Andrew Holness, for having confidence in him.“The Senate is not a simple appointment, it’s a very significant thing for someone to have confidence that you can sit in the Upper House and contribute to the legislative development of the country.As it relates to the Parliamentary Secretary post, the Prime Minister will determine my specific duties as it relates to that,” he said.The swearing-in ceremony was witnessed by President of the Senate, Tom Tavares-Finson; Leader of Government Business in the Senate and Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Senator the Hon. Kamina Johnson Smith; Government Senator, Matthew Samuda; and close family members of the new Senator.President of the Senate, Tom Tavares-Finson (left) congratulates newly appointed Government Senator and Parliamentary Secretary, Robert Nesta Morgan (second left) at a swearing-in ceremony held at King’s House on May 9. Sharing the moment are Leader of Government Business in the Senate and Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Senator the Hon. Kamina Johnson Smith (centre); and Government Senator, Matthew Samuda.last_img read more

Two-Year Contract Extension for FPSO Armada Perkasa

first_imgzoom Malaysia-based international offshore oilfield services provider, Bumi Armada Berhad announced that Afren Energy Resources Limited has extended its contracts with Armada Floating Solutions Limited and Bumi Armada (Singapore) Pte Ltd for the bareboat charter and the operations & maintenance respectively of the FPSO Armada Perkasa for another two years, with effect from 1 July 2014.The contracts extension for the Armada Perkasa, which has been operating offshore Nigeria in the Okoro-Setu field, is estimated at approximately RM 221 million in total.Mr Hassan Basma, Executive Director/Chief Executive Officer of Bumi Armada said, “Our Armada Perkasa, has been operating for Afren since 2008 with more than 98% uptime. These two-year  contract extensions by Afren are for the second and third optional extension years and underscore the quality of the asset and the operations and maintenance services provided by BAB Group.”The Armada Perkasa, which is 211.2 m long and weighs 58,557 deadweight tonnes, has a production capacity of 27,000 bbls/day of liquids and storage capacity for 360,000 barrels. To date, the FPSO has lifted over 32 million barrels of oil.The original contracts were first awarded in 2007, to take effect from 1 July 2008, for a fixed term of five years with five one-year extension options thereafter. The initial optional extension contract was extended in October 2012, for a one year period with effect from 1 July 2013.The contracts extensions are expected to contribute positively to Bumi Armada’s revenue and earnings from 2014 through to 2016.Bumi Armada, December 16, 2013last_img read more

New Contracts for TRIYARDS

first_imgzoom TRIYARDS Holdings Limited, an offshore vessel fabrication and engineering solutions provider to the oil and gas (O&G) industry, secured two new orders in vessel construction and outfitting for two cruise liners, demonstrating the group’s versatility in the Marine industry. The total contract value of the work for the company and its partners is approximately $7.5 million.For the first contract, the group will be building the hull and installation of piping, electrical and mechanical system and equipment in a new build vessel, the Aqua Mekong cruise vessel.The 63-metre (approximately 205 foot) long vessel will undergo a period of nine months construction. The mocked up part of her 5-star outfitting and furnishing of luxurious cabins will also be carried out in TRIYARDS.The second contract is with International Shipping Partners, one of the world’s largest passenger ship management companies with its headquarters in Miami, Florida, and is for the upgrading of accommodation for the ‘Silver Discoverer’.The 103-metre (approximately 334 foot) long vessel with a gross tonnage of 5,218GT will undergo a 12-week refurbishment prior to her service entry in the last leg of 1Q2014. With this new instalment, the upgraded facilities on the ‘Silver Discoverer’ include a new gym, beauty salon, and expedition cabins. TRIYARDS, January 9, 2014 My location Print  Close 此页面无法正确加载 Google 地图。您是否拥有此网站?确定last_img read more

Hyundai Mipo Adds Ten Product Carriers

first_imgzoom South Korea’s Hyundai Mipo Dockyard (HMD) has been awarded a $330.5 million contract to build ten product carriers for a Marshall Islands-based shipper.The deal, announced yesterday on the Korea Exchange, didn’t reveal many details on the vessel particulars and delivery dates. But one thing is for sure, steel cutting ceremony for the first vessel is scheduled to take place on May 7th 2014.Hyundai Mipo, founded in 1975, entered into the newbuilding market in 1996, and has since specialized in the construction of medium-sized vessels of the highest quality. The shipyard was ranked in the world as the leading yard in PC (Product Carrier) segment with the market share of 50%, delivers about 70 new vessels every year. World Maritime News Staff, April 9, 2014last_img

Image of the Day: Olympus All Set

first_imgzoom <a href=””><img class=”aligncenter size-full wp-image-143539″ src=”” alt=”Image of the Day” width=”644″ height=”400″ /></a>The image shows Platform Supply Vessel (PSV) Olympus decorated for her naming ceremony that took place on November 15th. It is the third in the series of Havyard’s 832 design and the eighth vessel to be delivered to Global Offshore Services. On Friday night, an Indian ceremony was held on board, where the Indians blessed this impressive ship in accordance with their customs, before godmother Sun Wen of China wished the vessel good luck in the traditional manner. It is tradition for Global Offshore to name their ships after mountains. This time, it was the turn of the Greek mountain Olympus, which at 2,919 metres is the tallest mountain in Greece.World Maritime News Staff; Image: Havyard Group ASlast_img read more

BW LPG in Clover

first_imgzoom Owner and operator of very large gas carriers (VLGC) BW LPG has enjoyed very favorable market conditions in 2014.The company has reaped the fruits of exceptionally high charter rates with its 2014 time charter equivalent income reaching  USD 539.2 million, 87% higher than 2013.2014 EBITDA for the year was USD 340 million in 2014, 150% higher than the USD 136.2 million achieved in 2013.BW LPG doubled its net profit in 2014 earning USD 255.7 million, up over 100% from USD 125.7 million from 2013.The company attributed improved profitability to the significant growth in export tonne miles, driving a sustained high charter rate environment and strong utilisation of the global LPG fleet.As a result, the company’s board has recommended total dividend payments of USD 1.91 for the full year 2014.“BW LPG has achieved excellent operational and financial outcomes in 2014, a year which has shown substantial growth and exceptional charter rates. Our leading VLGC position was enhanced by the acquisition of additional second-hand tonnage in 2013, enabling BW LPG to be the most important maritime contributor to exports of LPG from the United States. The recent acquisition of four VLGC newbuilding contracts on favorable terms highlights BW LPG’s ability to continue to grow its fleet cost-efficiently, for long-term value enhancement,” said the company’s CEO Nicholas Gleeson.BW LPG doubled its net profit in 2014 earning USD 255.7 millionWith respect to the market outlook, BW LPG anticipates continued growth in LPG transportation as a result of expanding LPG exports from shale gas and tight oil production in the United States.” Demand for LPG has been strong across the globe, with India, China and Indonesia the most significant growth markets, driving longer shipping distances. With this positive backdrop, BW LPG is benefiting from the significant fleet growth achieved in 2013 and from the addition of modern tonnage through an eight-vessel newbuilding program. The global VLGC fleet is growing rapidly in 2015 and 2016, which is likely to create a higher degree of market competitiveness in the future,” the shipowner said in its annual report.The company added that it has secured strong cash flow for 2015-18 through contracted employment with high quality counterparties.“A further 7 VLGC newbuildings are delivering into the fleet in 2015-16. This growth is supported by USD 400 million of new debt raised at competitive pricing of 1.7% over LIBOR. The company is thus well positioned to continue to deliver solid shareholder returns in the years to come,”Gleeson concluded.last_img read more

Libya Works on Restarting Exports from Oil Crescent Ports

first_imgAssessments were started on what needs to be done to lift force majeure and restart exports from oil crescent ports in Libya as soon as possible, according to Libya’s National Oil Corporation (NOC).“We welcome statements from the Libyan National Army allied with House of Representatives and the president of the HoR, Aguila Saleh, that the ports should be placed under NOC’s control,” said NOC chairman Mustafa Sanalla.He added that the production could be increased to 600,000 b/d within four weeks and to 950,000 b/d by the end of the year from the current production capacity of around 290,000 b/d.However, this is dependent on receiving essential funds from the budget and on the oil crescent ports and the closed pipelines in the southwest being opened and kept open, Sanalla said.According to Daily Mail, the country’s fourth oil port of Brega was seized by forces opposed to Libya’s unity government on Tuesday, after they took control of oil terminals at Ras Lanuf, Es Sidra and Zueitina a few days earlier.Although political space has opened in Libya and there is progress in the fight against terrorism, the political divisions underpinning the North African country’s conflict are deepening, a United Nations envoy warned.Drawing attention to the challenging security situation, further illustrated by the most recent violence in the country’s Oil Crescent area, the Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Libya, Martin Kobler, called for an immediate cessation of hostilities to prevent any damage to the country’s oil industry, its only source of income.“Libyan natural resources belong to all Libyans,” he said, adding that they “must be protected and exported legally under the authority of the Presidency Council (PC).”In August, NOC called on rival armed groups to avoid destroying the oil port of Zueitina and secure safe passage of vessels to the terminal.Under an agreement signed in July 2016, the Petroleum Facilities Guards (PFG) and the Government of National Accord (GNA) agreed to reopen the country’s three oil ports, Ras Lanuf, Zueitina, and Es Sidra, that PFG has been blockading due to a pay dispute.World Maritime News Stafflast_img read more

Hanjins Panamax Quartet Sold for USD 224 Mn

first_imgzoom Four of Hanjin Shipping’s 4,275 TEU containerships were sold to South Korean company Korea Marine Transport Co (KMTC) for a price of USD 22.4 million, according to data provided by VesselsValue.The 2008-built Panamaxes, which were sold through a bank sale, are the Hanjin Durban, Hanjin Norfolk, Hanjin Piraeus and Hanjin Rio de Janeiro.Featuring a length of 260 meters and a width of 32 meters, the vessels, built by South Korea’s Samsung Heavy Industries Co, fetched a price tag of USD 5.6 million each.VesselsValue data shows that each of the boxships has a market value of around USD 5.3 million.The sale comes only days after Dutch media reported that three 13,000 TEU Hanjin containerships were sold at an auction in Rotterdam for a total of USD 392 million.The 2012- and 2013- built Hanjin Europe, Hanjin Africa and Hanjin Harmony were reportedly sold on behalf of the German HSH Nordbank.Another Hanjin ship, the Hanjin Gold, is expected to be auctioned off by a Rotterdam court in January 2017.World Maritime News Stafflast_img read more

Eagle Bulk Upbeat on Market Recovery as It Slashes Loss

first_imgzoom Marshall Islands owner of dry bulkers Eagle Bulk has managed to cut its loss in the first quarter of 2017 having reported USD 11.1 million loss, bouncing back from a loss of USD 39.2 million posted in the same period last year.Adjusted EBITDA, which Eagle believes is one of the key metrics to measure operating performance, was USD 4.6 million for the first quarter of 2017, against USD -14.4 million a year ago.Net time and voyage charter revenues were USD 45.9 million also up when compared with last year’s USD 21.3 million. The increase in revenue was assigned to higher time charter rates in Q1 2017 as well as an increase in available days due to chartered in vessels.The company said that its fleet utilization increased from 98.4% to 99.3% due to better vessel performance and lower off hire days.“During the first quarter, Eagle finalized the acquisition of 9 Crown-63 Ultramax dry bulk sister vessels – a transaction that will significantly increase our operating scale and provide meaningful exposure to the Ultramax segment.  In total over the past year, we have acquired 11 modern Ultramax vessels as part of our fleet renewal and growth strategy which, in conjunction with the continued build-out of our active operator business model and charter-in fleet, is beginning to drive increased revenue. Importantly, these developments are occurring against the backdrop of continued improvement in the dry bulk market itself with respect to both trade demand and vessel supply fundamentals,” Gary Vogel, Eagle Bulk’s CEO, commented.“Looking ahead, we are increasingly optimistic concerning Eagle’s enviable positioning within the dry bulk market, as well as our ability to generate value for all stakeholders.”Since the beginning of the year the company took delivery of three vessels, the MV Singapore Eagle along with MV Mystic Eagle and the MV Southport Eagle, the first two of the nine vessels acquired from Greenship Bulk.At the end of the quarter, the company’s cash totaled USD 145.8 million, with total liquidity standing at USD 170.8 million.last_img read more