Critics are voicing their doubts over the World’s 50 Best Restaurants list, revealing that publicists and lobbyists could be involved if a restaurant were willing to pay them a bonus for getting it on the list. Lovebirds bid goodbye to Paris’ iconic symbol of love and commitment after 45 tons of locks threatened to collapse the structure. And, Japan addresses its ageing population by welcoming a new citizen in the form of a radioactive giant lizard.
[JAPAN] If you can’t destroy it …
… then perhaps welcoming it into the family might help. Famous reptilian character Godzilla has recently been awarded honorary citizenship status in Japan, after having lived in the country for 61 years. The icon was also appointed as tourism ambassador for Tokyo’s Shinjuku ward, where Toho (the Japanese studio behind the 1954 original movie) is located. As seen on its official residency papers, Godzilla is now tasked with “promoting the entertainment of and watching over the Kabuki-cho neighborhood, ” as well as attracting visitors to the giant Godzilla head mounted atop Shinjuku TOHO Building. According to Shinjuku Mayor Kenichi Yoshizumi, “Godzilla is a character that is the pride of Japan.”
[France] No love locks
If you are one of nearly a million couples who have locked down your love on Paris’ Pont des Arts on the River Seine, we hope you took pictures before the bridge was taken apart. The City of Love is in the process to remove some 45 tons of padlocks on France’s first iron bridge, with the first grilles removed from early Monday morning. Many see this tradition as an eyesore, as well as a safety hazard. In what might be the only occasion in which locks do not guarantee safety, part of the bridge’s railing collapsed last June under the weight of Love. To deter lovebirds from affixing more locks, plastic panels will take the place of metal grilles on the bridge. It remains to be seen what officials would do with locks removed from the bridge. Meanwhile, you can lock away at these alternative locations.
[Spain] Should you take this list with a pinch of salt?
This year’s list of the World’s 50 Best Restaurants is out with No. 1 going to Spanish restaurant El Celler de Can Roca. The establishment reclaimed the top spot from previous winner Noma, in Copenhagen (now ranked No.3, and its “poorest” performance ever). Interestingly, the highly coveted spot has been alternating between these two restaurants in recent years, with El Cellar de Can Roca being No. 1 in 2013, and Noma clinching top position from 2010 to 2012, and 2014. However, this list is not without its criticism, with many chefs citing the awards as arbitrary and susceptible to corruption. Despite that, be prepared to join a long waiting list if you are looking to wine and dine in El Celler de Can Roca. What about starting somewhere closer to home? Singapore’s Restaurant Andre sits at No. 46 while No. 10 Gaggan is just a three-hour flight away in Bangkok.
Have you eaten at any of the 50 restaurants on the list? If so, do leave us a Comment below and tell us how you found your experience there.