Monocle’s first ever book, The Monocle Guide to Better Living looks at the different aspects of the quality of life and offers their insights on how and where to live better.
A wonderful collection of writing, reports and pictures of different places to live. A perfect read for the start of a new year, the book will surely inspire you to improve your life.
Here are my favorite snapshots and stories from the book:
Beirut made the books’ Cities to Call Home along with the obvious cities like Copenhagen and Tokyo which I find great. While I’ve lived all my life in cities, I always find myself living as far as I can from the center of it all. Living in the Middle East for more than five (5) years now, it’s easy to understand the charm of its cities and people. The book offers a lot of insights on how to make a better city such as making it more green by bringing in more trees, proper signange all over the city, ensuring proper work and life balance for its inhabitants and great views.
I’ve always been fascinated with Japan and its different cities. It’s still number one on my list of places I want to call home although I think I have to visit in order to decide which city fits me well.
I came across a UK company called The Wasabi Company in the book which grows fresh wasabi. Wasabi, also called Japanese horseradish, grows naturally along stream beds in mountain rivers in Japan. Its stem is grated and turned into your sushi and sashimi condiment. It is scarce and the wasabi condiment you’re used to seeing in Japanese fast food restaurants are often made with a horseradish mixed with mustard, starch and green colorant. Real wasabi is expensive. The location of The Wasabi Company farm is a secret.
Ripe is started working with local farms in the United Arab Emirates in 2011. It started when its founder, Becky Balderstone, realised that she couldn’t source seasonal, organic and local fresh produce in the UAE. Today, Ripe holds weekly Food & Craft markets in Abu Dhabi and Dubai and have its own shop in Dubai.
The book has so much more wonderful stories about different businesses and products which is really inspiring. The book includes 10 essays on what makes a great city, why craft is desirable, how to run your own hotel, and why culture is good for you.