The luxury voyage redefined, from remote retreats to spontaneous urban sprees

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August 24, 2014

Lane Coder x Larry Letters

A Fine Art-Inspired Trip to the Californian Outback

“I think there’s an inherent narrative that happens when taking pictures in Big Sur,” says American photographer Lane Coder of his recent collaboration with fellow image-maker, Larry Letters, in the remote Californian outback. “It’s a place stuck in time a little bit, you can still feel the presence of hippies past and present.” The pair, who found an affinity between their work while studying at the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, escaped the confines of the studio for the great outdoors in between commissions for Vogue Japan and The New Yorker. “I find beauty in the details as well as giving the ‘whole’ picture; I think it helps tell a more complete story,” says Coder, who snapped the two aerial shots from the plane during his return journey back to New York. While they managed to fit in an impromptu fashion shoot using the rugged landscape and giant redwoods as a backdrop, the trip was not without a touch of danger, says Letters: “Killer seagulls, a bit of debauchery, a couple of trips to the hospital, fine wine in Wine Country, alien-like jellyfish, and California’s gorgeous, chameleon-esque light.”

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Fabriken Furillen: Island Escapism

The Stunning Repurposed Architecture and Lunar Landscapes of Gotland’s Refined Resort

London-based photographer Peter Guenzel explores the sparse and calming atmosphere of former limestone refinery turned eco hotel, Fabriken Furillen. Stretching across 600 acres of an old quarry site on the island of Gotland off the southeastern coast of Sweden, the minimalist retreat is set amid the area’s untrammeled natural beauty featuring rocky coastline, wind-swept pines and glistening sea. After discovering the deserted factory in the 90s, founder Johan Hellström preserved its original infrastructure and recycled local materials such as concrete, limestone and hardwood to build the hotel's 17 rooms. “The interior perfectly matches the industrial character of the buildings and the colors of the surrounding area,” observes Guenzel, who has shot for the likes of AnOther, Arena Homme Plus and The Observer. “But it still felt warm and welcoming in a minimalist ‘Swedish’ way. Much of the industrial infrastructure is still in place but not restored—the jetty with the crane, for example, felt like it was slowly disintegrating.” For those seeking complete solitude, Hellström erected Wi-Fi-free hermit cabins alongside the hotel to provide total escapism in between visits to its idyllic bakery or restaurant. “The greatest part about it is the unknown,” says Hellström. “Even if you look at the building carefully, you can't see what's on the inside, and that's very thrilling.”

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Bonneville SpeedWeek

Photographer Simon Davidson Zooms in On the Desert Racing Action Across Utah’s Salt Flats

Simon Davidson’s latest photo series captures high-speed junkies from all over the world descending with their souped-up engines upon a sprawling 5-mile course in Utah’s 36,650 acre dry salt lake for the 64th annual Bonneville SpeedWeek. Over 512 entries combining high-tech engineering and vintage automobiles—including custom belly tankers, hot rods, motorcycles and streamliners—gathered to set land speed records and race at upwards of 400mph upon the uninhabited salt shell. “Over the last hundred years, there have been more land speed records set on Bonneville’s Salt Flats than anywhere else in the world,” says the photographer. “It could almost be said that Bonneville is the home of speed.” This year’s high-octane winner, a Speed Demon D Blown Fuel streamliner, smashed records by reaching 430mph in temperatures nearing 120 Fahrenheit. Utah’s famed speedway track dates back to the 30s when the then Salt Lake City mayor Ab Jenkins took on motoring journalist Sir Malcolm Campbell in the city’s first ever race. A 50s and 60s car aficionado himself, Davidson depicts the fervent mood of the contestants: “Those who keep coming back time and time again call it the 'Salt Fever'.”

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