Monocle #167, October 2023


Monocle’s bumper October issue gives you plenty of bang for your buck. Our new Retail Awards honour the shopkeepers bringing refined and original ideas to the world’s high streets and out autumn Style Directory will ensure that you look the part when you hit the town. Elsewhere, we meet Milan’s elegantly dressed older women, question the relevance of the UN and the mayor of Dallas tells us how the city is staying safe.

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At the front
All hands on deck/ The stories that fill these pages span everything from female freedom fighters in the Middle East to the retail gurus bringing back our love of in-person shopping. Monocle’s editor in chief, Andrew Tuck, introduces some of the fruits of his team’s labour.

The Opener

Monocle’s global bureaux keep their ears to the ground in a bevy of far-flung locales – and they’re there to keep you abreast of the latest developments. This month: planes, panels and playgrounds.
Show on the road/ You’ll find all human life on the Cairo to Alexandria desert highway, a route beloved of many Egyptians.
Ahead of his time/ From designing houses before he graduated to crafting elegant watches, the 90-year-old Pritzker Prize-winning architect has consistently pushed his practice forward.
Melting pot/ Polymath Edmund de Waal opens his studio to introduce us to his closest collaborators: his team.

The Agenda: Global briefings
October/ The stories you should be paying attention to – and the ones you might have missed.
Defence/ The US Navy’s new therapy dog, the benefits of claiming neutrality and the Indian diplomat with Hollywood appeal.
Pride and prejudice/ Naveena Kottoor on the rising tide of politicised homophobia in East Africa.
Business/ Balkan holiday woes, Finnish office pods and the heritage brand that is turning heads.
Culture/ Sequestering melodies in the High Arctic and onboard entertainment, New-Zealand style.
Design/ The practice revitalising a Taiwanese waterfront, an impressive new concrete bridge in Aarau and creative takeaways from Mallorca.

Global views: Long reads
The art of persuasion/ As war rages in Europe and tensions rise across the Asia-Pacific region, diplomacy’s long-established pillars are being tested. In the following, we speak to some of the world’s top diplomats to gauge where their profession is heading.
Sisters in arms/ Stateless Kurds have endured centuries of persecution across the Middle East. Now, Iran’s strict application of sharia law is driving Kurdish women to fight for their freedom.
Best in stores/ Who has that special touch when it comes to service, atmosphere and products? We pick the winning stores and shopkeepers around the world.
Fine print/ Gerhard Steidl has crafted a company in his exacting image – and now he’s expanding his one-street empire with an eye to the future.
Back on solid ground/ Art and music have been a driving force behind the cultural and literal recovery of the earthquake-struck Italian city that is reopening to the world.
Thinking big/ From a reappraisal of a pop artist sidelined for her feminist views to a new film challenging the norms of the western, this month’s cultural selection is full of work that will challenge and entertain.
Top of the class/ It’s not just what you learn; it’s also where you learn it. From a school that’s open to the elements to a curvaceous nursery, architecture can help to give children a head start in life. We visit three educational institutions with designs that pass with flying colours.
Natural Wonders/ As designers seek to lower environmental impact, new eco-friendly materials are coming into play. How do they stack up?
Style Directory/ The beginning of autumn is synonymous with a wardrobe refresh. To help you in the endeavour, we have scoured fashion runways and designers’ studios around the world, from Laguna Beach and Tokyo to Milan and Singapore, to find best-in-class products and the most promising new names to help you rethink your staples and statement pieces.
Northern lights/ How do you convince Norwegians raised to be suspicious of ‘luxury’ to embrace the joys of high-end fashion? We ask the experts.
In the hot seat/ Three very different fashion and lifestyle firms are finding that the physical world still matters, whether it’s the materials used for bedding, a shop that fosters community or the potential of lab-grown diamonds. We speak to their decision-makers about what’s on the horizon.
Close encounters/ Luxury fashion brand Mytheresa uses global get-togethers to charm its army of VIP customers.

Inventory & Expo: Where to go, buy and eat
Shore up/ High in the hills above Italy’s coastal resort is a farm and cookery school celebrating the real taste of Liguria.
In good taste/ We sample the three bars vying for your attention at a Parisian opening that’s become the talk of the town before hopping up to Helsinki for succulent seafood and down to Sydney for a delectable dining experience that comes with a view of ‘that’ bridge. Plus: an Italian take on the humble doughnut.
Inner space/ From a picture-perfect beach club on the Atlantic coast to a series of discreet holiday villas, a sense of intimacy is at the heart of three new Portuguese openings that have caught our eye.
Neutral beauty/ Inspired by its lush location at the heart of Japan’s capital, this calm and intimate oasis is turning over a new leaf in urban design and hospitality.
Eat, sleep, repeat/ Auberge Tokito is a relaxing retreat away from the city offering hot springs, spa treatments and, as the jewel in its crown, multiple Michelin-starred chefs.
Dream machines/ Our technology round-up features a handy battery pack and a compact flip phone.
Style for the ages/ Fashion is often seen as the preserve of the young. But in arguably the most fashionable city of them all, Milan, ladies of a certain vintage are proving that dressing well is less about standing out, or having the latest ‘in’ logo emblazoned on a T-shirt, and more about cultivating a personal style that relies on sumptuous fabrics, elegance learned through experience and just the right amount of embellishment to turn the daily consumption of espressos and proseccos into a living lesson in how to present oneself. These ‘sciure’ have even become a modern style phenomenon. So who are they? We hit Via Montenapoleone to find out.

Additional information

Weight 700 g
Dimensions 27 × 20 × 2.5 cm


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