Fashion guru Tim Gunn is best known for his role as judge and mentor on Bravo's Project Runway and Tim Gunn's Guide to Style but his main job is Chief Creative Officer of Liz Claiborne, Inc. He shares his travel highlights and tips with USA TODAY.
Q: Where have you been recently that you liked or were surprised by?
A: Last fall, I was in Los Angeles for five weeks while we taped Project Runway season six. I had visited LA many times before, but those trips were always a mere day or two. My impression of the city was lukewarm: a sprawling megalopolis where people spend inordinate amounts of time trapped in idling vehicles. What's the appeal of that? So, I arrived in LA for my record-breaking stay with huge doses of apprehension. (But) I fell in love with Los Angeles! I found it to be a cultural treasure chest, with fabulous museums, architecture, and entertainment. And the weather was so sunny and sublime that I actually began to long for a cloud to pass by. Furthermore, I embraced the city as a pedestrian (!) and greatly respected the jaywalking enforcements, which I wish were in place in my dear home of New York, because it makes navigation so much safer and civilized. Finally, everyone should experience Ralph's, a fabulous food emporium that's unlike anything that we have here in New York. I shopped there every day. It was my therapy!
Q: What's the best place you've ever visited?
A: Hong Kong. It has all of the exoticism that one naturally associates with South Asia, yet its 150 years of British reign have left it with a Western flavor of infrastructure. That means that for the visitor it's a user-friendly environment. Central Hong Kong is great on foot: shopping, sightseeing, or just people-watching are all engaging. Travel to The Peak and you'll experience a view that beats Paris from the Eiffel Tower or New York from the Empire State Building. And if you go to the south side of the island, there are hiking and biking trails and gorgeous beaches. Shop for antiques on Hollywood Road and have a Pimm's Cup at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel. Be certain to cross the harbor to Kowloon and take in the city from there. And while in Kowloon, don't miss the bird and the jade markets, which are amazing. For me, Hong Kong is Manhattan on the Riviera.
Q: What's the most surprising/unexpected place you've ever visited?