Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Monday, November 16, 2009

Stunning collection of Luxury Paradise Islands

Lofoten Islands, Norway
Roatan, Honduras
Luxury Paradise Island of Tahiti
Sveti Stefan, Montenegro
Petit St Vincent, Caribbean
San Blas Islands, Panama
Taprobane, Sri Lanka
Los Roques, Venezuela
North Island, Seychelles
Dhoni Mighili, Maldives
Aitutaki, South Pacific
Malapacao Island, The Philippines

Saturday, November 14, 2009

The Best Gardens In The World

Butchart Gardens, British

Monday, November 9, 2009

Salvation Mountain a man-made mountain

Financial Update :-

World markets track US higher after jobs report

Asian stock markets rose Monday as investors took a surprisingly weak U.S. jobs report as a sign that interest rates in the world's largest economy will stay low longer than expected. European shares opened higher.
Also buoying sentiment were bullish corporate earnings results and gold's climb above $1,108 an ounce.
Asia's gains followed Wall Street, where stock indexes climbed modestly Friday after the government said the U.S. unemployment rate surpassed 10 percent last month for the first time since 1983.
While clear evidence of America's economic woes, the climb in joblessness still gave investors reassurances the Federal Reserve will need to keep its bank lending rate at a record low range of zero to 0.25 percent for the time being. Low interest rates tend to slow demand for the dollar and support liquidity, which can in turn boost stocks.
"The economic sector is still weak, and we can expect no interest rate hike in the near term," said Linus Yip, strategist at First Shanghai Securities Ltd. in Hong Kong. "So all this is helping the U.S. market and the Hong Kong markets to remain firm."
Now that Asian investors have digested the U.S. labor market data, their focus will likely shift back to mainland China, Yip said. Several key economic indicators are due out this week, including retail sales, industrial output and the consumer price index.
During early trade in Europe, Britain's FTSE 100 added 0.9 percent, Germany's DAX was up 1.3 percent and France's CAC-40 gained 1.1 percent.
In Asia, Hong Kong's Hang Seng index rose 1.7 percent to 22,207.55, and Japan's Nikkei stock average edged up 0.2 percent to 9,823.90.
Benchmarks in mainland China, South Korea, Taiwan, Singapore, Australia and New Zealand also advanced.
Financial and insurance stocks were sharply higher in several markets.
Australia's AXA Pacific Holdings Ltd. soared more than 32 percent after the insurer rejected a $10 billion takeover bid from rival AMP Ltd. and French parent AXA SA. The rebuff raised investor hopes for a higher offer.
In Japan, Mitsui Sumitomo Insurance Group Holdings Inc. surged 8.6 percent after the nonlife insurer reported better-than-expected earnings results for the April-September half.
Earnings hopes bolstered Chinese issue as well, sending the Shanghai Composite Index up for a seventh straight session.
"The euphoria carried on, as investors were confident to see a profitable fourth quarter based on reports for the past three months," said Li Xianmin, an analyst for Pingan Securities in the southern city of Shenzhen.
Shares in companies linked to renewable energy rose ahead of U.S. President Barack Obama's visit to Beijing next week on hopes the two governments will discuss possible measures to promote the industries.
Chinese gold miners soared on higher gold prices. Shandong Gold Mining Co. soared 7.7 percent and Zijin Mining Group Co. added 3.3 percent.
Ongoing concerns about the strong yen pressured the Tokyo market, with the country's major exporters taking a hit. The dollar fell under the 90 yen line Friday, though recovered slightly in Monday trading.
Nissan Motor Co. lost 2.3 percent, while Panasonic Corp. fell 2 percent.
On Friday, the Dow Jones industrial average rose 17.46, or 0.2 percent, to 10,023.42. The Standard & Poor's 500 index closed up 2.67, or 0.3 percent, at 1,069.30.
U.S. futures pointed to a higher open on Wall Street Monday. Dow futures added 56 points, or 0.6 percent, to 10,034, and S&P futures rose 7.5 points, or 0.7 percent, to 1,073.70.
Oil prices shot higher in Asia as Hurricane Ida threatened oil installations in the Gulf of Mexico. Benchmark crude for December delivery was up 94 cents to $78.37; the contract fell $2.19 on Friday.
Gold prices continued their march higher, trading up $10, or about 0.9 percent, at $1,105.7. Prices hit a high of $1,108.8 during the session.
The dollar was trading at 90.08 yen from 89.97 yen late Friday. The euro stood at $1.4934 from $1.4885.

Friday, November 6, 2009

7 More Deserted Wonders of the Modern World

(7) Gunkanjima, Japan: Once known for having one of the highest population densities in the world (1.4 people per square meter) “Battleship Island” is now completely deserted. Known today as “Ghost Island,” this strange place stands out from other hundreds of abandoned Japanese islands for its massive concrete sea walls and omnipresent and ominous concrete architecture. Some people have snuck onto the island to take photographs and explore.
(6) Varosha, Cyprus: Photographing this city, fenced off by the Turkish military in 1974, is forbidden. These images show a rare glimpse inside of this eerie ghost town. The area was once home to thousands of Greek Cypriots who have been denied for decades the right to return to their homes. The photographer who took these images nearly lost his camera to a military patrol, and the slanted angles are a result of shooting from his side when he could.
(5) Verona, New Jersey: The Essex Mountain Sanatorium is an amazing example of a prevalent type of abandonment. Mental hospitals were largely abandoned in the United States during the 1960s and 1970s, being widely considered no better than prisons for the mentally ill. In the wake of this movement, many such building complexes were simply left to decay over time. Of course, breaking into these and taking photographs often yields interesting stories.
(4) Bangkok, Thailand: This former Russian Embassy, including the century-old Luang Sathorn Mansion, is remarkably preserved despite being long abandoned. Sound-proofed and metal-lined walls tell the story of what was once a Russian intelligence stronghold during the Cold War. Pieces of intelligence and communications equipment are strewn about, but much of the architecture and decor remain intact.
(3) Pyongyang, North Korea: Once slated to be the largest hotel structure in the world, the Ryugyung Hotel building remains incomplete, a towering but hollow concrete shell. At over 1,000 feet high, this building represents a political response to the South Korean company’s equivalent. It is unclear whether the structure will ever be finished. For now, it remains an empty giant on the skyline.
(2) Detroit, Michigan: The population of detroit has decreased by half over the past fifty years. Vast areas of land have been cleared in an effort to rid the city of its abandonments, but many structures still remain. Even landmark buildings of historical and architectural value have been demolished. People tend to think that all urban areas grow over time, but Detroit provides a striking counterexample.

(1) Centralia, Pennsylvania: Fourty years later, this abandoned town is still burning from below, due to a coal mine fire that never went out, bringing underworld metaphors to life. Carbon monoxide rose to dangerous levels (and sink holes opened up beneath unsuspecting residents) before many left the area for good. Today, a few people still live in or around Centralia, though smoke continues to curl up out of the ground and through gaping cracks in highways. Some try to comprehend it through fascinating videos of the town. Others just pass through, documenting their experience of this surreal place.

Honorable Mentions go out to three other reader-submitted recommendations: (1) Humberstone, Chile, is now a World Heritage Site. (2) Cook, Australia, is an abandoned outpost town in the Australian Outback. (3) Gary, Indiana, though not fully abandoned has some impressive deserted structures. Know of even more?

If you haven’t already, be sure to check out the Original 7 Deserted Wonders of the Postmodern World and feel free to add others below! Also be sure to see the Oldest Skyscrapers in the World. Also consider these Abandonments Resources if you are interested in exploring urban abandonments in your own area.


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