Posts tagged with "Samantha Miduri"

Take These Three Bucket List Vacations Before You Die

Bucket lists are becoming a hot topic again, and with it comes the need for many to decide on their travel plans as soon as possible. Getting out and seeing the world is the best way to ensure you experience as much of this planet as possible before you have to leave it forever.

These are the top three vacation destinations that should be on your list when you’re planning it!

Kerry, Ireland

Although London is one of the top vacation spots globally, it’s time to leave England and enjoy some time in the gorgeous Irish countryside. Kerry, known as the Rose of Tralee, is one of the most beautiful areas on the planet. Endless rugged landscapes, and beautiful stretching water, make it feel like you’ve stepped into the garden of Eden.

This is an amazing space to allow yourself to feel like you’re getting in touch with nature, where deer and stag roam freely and endless tumbling waterfalls crash down onto the craggy rocks beneath them like works of art.  

If you want to take in as much beauty as possible, there’s a scenic drive called the Ring of Kerry, which you can take in just a day to explore picturesque coastlines and beautiful stretching land as far as you can see. This view deserves to be on everyone’s bucket lists, and the delicious food and friendly locals will ensure that you’ll want to add it back to your bucket list time and time again after you’ve left! 

Bali, Indonesia

Warm gorgeous clear waters, bright white sand, and perfect temperatures have made Bali a must-stop destination for years. This beautiful paradise is one of the most popular bucket list ideas for travelers.

You can enjoy beautiful endless beaches while you unwind from the world’s pressures. Friendly locals are excited to help you learn about their home, and the countless resorts ensure that you won’t be bored or wanting for anything while you’re here.

This is also an incredibly affordable option, giving you the chance to set aside the rest of your money for later and possibly sneak in another bucket list vacation!

Marrakesh, Morocco

Marrakesh is a gorgeous destination and one of the top vacation areas in the world because of how much it offers. From incredible historical sights and their deep cultural meaning to some of the best food on Earth: every step you take in Marrakesh will feel like you’re walking in paradise.  

This area has something for everyone, from shopping at the souks to enjoying golfing or hiking. If you want a bit of paradise in your life, you’ll find it in Marrakesh. Although this can be an expensive vacation for some, it’s worth it when you consider how much entertainment and beauty is possible from just one visit!

Seeing the World is the Best Bucket List Choice

Although there are some bucket list items people will argue over; the least controversial is travel. Traveling allows you to take in as much of the world as possible before you die, and honestly: who could ask for more?

How to choose the right shoes

Finding the right footwear can be very difficult. Even though you have likely been wearing shoes since you were a small child. Many people just plow on through shoes not caring too much whether they are right for their feet. 

The right footwear can keep your feet healthy, keep your body safe from injury and make your physical activity easier. It is so much easier to stay active when you have the right footwear that is appropriate to your feet, whether they be wide, slim, or sensitive. 

What should shoes do for you?

The right shoe should provide you with several services. It should cushion the feet nicely. The midsole is the main part of the shoe that is there to provide cushioning. They increase the amount of time that force takes to reach your body and allow it to adapt. However, this only works when your shoe supports your foot’s particular alignment when it touches the ground. 

Additionally, you should have a shoe that feels comfortable even on the first wear. It should fit well and not hold your feet too tightly. You should have at least 1-1.5cm at the end of the shoe and it should be wide enough to fit your feet. The key here is for it to feel snug and not tight

Considerations

Height Soles- Height soles is a shoe insert that can increase your height. You place it in the shoe instead of the original sole for a discreet height increase. The toe area of your shoes will remain flat, but the heel is a thick raised area. You can gain anywhere between 5-10cm to your height. 

Activities- what will you be using these shoes for? If they are being used for physical activities such as running, then this will impact the type of shoe you are shopping for. Shoes for running are usually more cushioned and wider so that your feet are more protected. Make sure you know what you are shopping for. 

Legs, feet, and joints- Your choice of footwear affect more than just your feet. If they are too tight, loose, and not supportive enough then you may be placing excessive stress on your feet, legs, ankles, and joints. This can lead to pain, bunions, shin splints, or postural issues. You need to make sure that you are wearing the right shoes for yourself. 

Shoe Supports

If you have ankle or feet problems, then you may need to make alterations to your shoes. This is okay to do. Shoes bought from the store aren’t guaranteed to suit everybody so altering them can help you. Fortunately, there are various shoe supports out there to consider. 

Heel cup- A heel cup can help alleviate pain beneath your heel. They are usually made of plastic, foam, or rubber and are made to provide extra support around the heel. This will help relieve pressure on any tenderness near or around your heel. 

Arch supports- Arch supports the treatment of pain in the foot and helps promote function in the lower legs. They are again made of foam or rubber and are worn inside your shoes. They are specially designed inserts that relieve pain in a certain area whilst also supporting the surrounding area. This can help alter foot alignment and function.

Metatarsal pad

A metatarsal pad is used to relieve pressure and pain from beneath the ball of the toes. A range of materials can be used for them, but they are usually made of foam so that the pad can affix to the insole near the most tender area. It can help to distribute the pressure that would be placed on the ball of the foot so that one area doesn’t suffer alone.  

One thing you should do is to talk to a healthcare professional about any problems with your feet. They will be able to diagnose what area is the problem and what the solution would be. This will help you decide on which footwear you need and can treat your symptoms before they get too bad. You can seek help from specialty shoe stores, podiatrists, and physiotherapists all of whom will have the knowledge you need. 

Finding the right footwear

Looking for shoes can be draining especially if when you purchase your new footwear, they make your feet uncomfortable and leave you in pain. You should take some time to research where your problems are coming from and to find which shoe suits your needs. This may mean getting rid of your one shoe for everything and getting multiple pairs for various occasions. 

 

illustration by Samantha Miduri for use by 360 Magazine

How to Wash White Shoes

By: Amanda Sanders

 Caring for white shoes requires special attention as dirt and stains are unavoidable and is easily visible on a white surface. Fortunately, there are many ways to bring a dirty pair of white shoes back to life and to its original color. Amanda Sanders, Celebrity Stylist, Fashion Consultant, and Lifestyle Expert at AmandaSanders.com, shares her top tips on how to best remove stains for different types of white shoes and get them to look good as new. 

  • Acknowledge that white shoes will eventually turn yellow. You can’t prevent sneakers from turning white to yellow because that naturally happens over time. However, there are ways to prevent debris from sticking which can add to the color change.
  • Be cautious about throwing shoes into the washing machine. I don’t recommend using the washing machine for shoes because it can warp and damage some of the shoes. When it comes to suede and leather white shoes, these materials can be completely damaged from the rinse cycle. Also, the heat from the washer can damage the glue that holds the soles together. It is better to air dry shoes by gathering newspapers, crinkling them, and inserting them into the shoe. Make sure to take out the laces and soles and let them sit overnight.
  • Use cleaning products that’s suited to the material of the shoe. To clean white leather, you can use a Mr. Clean sponge and neutral leather cream. Fun fact, leather sneakers can be air brushed white after a good professional cleaning! If you want to clean canvas and athletic shoes at home, dry brush it with a toothbrush to get rid of as much dirt and debris as you can. Then, mix warm water with a bit of laundry detergent like Arm & Hammer Odor Blasters and submerge the whole shoe in a bucket. Use the brush to scrub the mixture into stains, rinse off all residue, and air dry completely.
  • Opt for a laundry service for convenience. I love using a service like “Cobbler Concierge” as they will pick up and drop off your sneakers, looking new and fresh!

Myths About Traveling the World

Do you dream of the open road but find yourself held back by fear? Was that fear planted by many things you’ve heard over the years or impressions you’ve picked up here and there? There are many myths about travel that keep people from following their dreams, and below are just a few of them.

You Have to Be Rich

One of the most common misconceptions is that everyone who travels is rich. Not only is this untrue, but you are less likely to meet rich people while you’re traveling because they are saving money and working all the time. While it’s true that there’s a certain jet set lifestyle attainable only by the super-wealthy, most travelers are ordinary people. Many of them live and work abroad or work while they’re on the road.

Others have saved up for years while working very ordinary jobs, such as waiting tables. If you’ve got a professional job and other assets, such as a home, you’re already ahead of the game. You could even rent out your home while you’re on the road or tap into the equity in your home if you need to get more cash. To find out more about taking out a home equity loan and to learn about recent laws, you can review a guide about the process.

It’s Dangerous

Are there dangerous places in the world? Absolutely, and this includes countries where there is a great deal of political instability or very high crime. However, would it surprise you to learn that there are also countries that are considered much safer than the United States?

Paying attention to ways to stay safe is one of many expert traveling tips to think about. However, there are a lot of other factors to consider as well. Some countries are only dangerous in certain areas where tourists rarely venture. Of course, people aren’t the only danger. Bad weather, dangerous animals and other natural threats are out there too—but you probably have some of them at home as well. Do your research, be smart, and there’s no reason you can’t be as safe as you are in your hometown.

Language is a Barrier

It’s a false belief that everyone speaks English, but it’s also untrue that no one does. The big myth here though is that language is something that should keep you at home. Smart phone apps mean it’s easier than ever to make your way around without knowing any of the language, but it’s also very easy to learn a few basic, polite phrases in any language, which can take you a long way. You’d be surprised at how far you can get with this and gestures.

The key here is to practice travel etiquette and be respectful and not assume that everyone will be able to speak English. Even if you’ve just heard them do so with someone else, it’s polite to approach someone and ask if they speak English before launching into the rest of what you have to say. Preferably, you should ask this question in their language. Let go of your language-based fears and you’ll be surprised at the many ways you can connect with others.

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Travel illustration by Samantha Miduri for use by 360 Magazine

Top Hotels in Shanghai

By: Emily Bunn

As global travels begins to reopens, the world looks finally leave the confines of their homes. For those who are especially adventurous and looking to take a once-in-a-lifetime voyage, consider Shanghai. Shanghai has a wealth of tourist attractions – like the – as well as delicious cuisine, a lively culture, and beautiful views. For those looking to visit, after your long flight across the world, relax into the clean, cushioned beds and enjoy amazing amenities as these top boutique hotels in Shanghai. All of these hotels are centrally located, so travelers can enjoy all that the city has to offer right outside the lobby.

Amanyangyun Shanghai
Looking for some zen, peaceful relaxation, and rejuvenation? Consider staying at Amanyangyun. This boutique hotel is quaintly nestled on the city skirts of Shanghai. Guests can stay in authentic Antique Ming and Qing Dynasty villas in contemporary, luxury suites. Outside of the hotel, the a rescued forest of camphor trees and shimmering lake are the perfect locations for photographs, relaxing outdoors, and appreciating ecological conservation. Enjoy the view on the hotel’s open air, pool side relaxation terrace.

The hotel feature amenities including a spa, fine dining, a sauna, cold plunge pool, jacuzzi, 20-meter heated indoor swimming pool, a 28.5-meter heated outdoor swimming pool, a hair and beauty salon, treatment rooms, relaxation lounges, tea rooms, a pilates and yoga studio, and more!

For more information on this property, please visit their website HERE.

Mandarin Oriental Pudong Shanghai
If you’re looking for a five-star stay in a colorful, lively, and high-quality hotel, look no further than the Mandarin Oriental Pudong. This fine property is located on the serene banks of the Huangpu River, the heart of Pudong’s financial district. Guests get the best of both worlds, as they can easily explore the city, or chose to relax by the waterfront. If you venture outside your lavish suite, be sure to visit the hotel’s sunken bamboo garden.

Providing the utmost quality of service to their guests, the Mandarin Oriental Pudong offers delicious eats, calming spa treatments, a tea lounge, a salon, 25 meter indoor swimming pool, and a high-tech wellness center and exercise studio, among other amenities. If you’re looking to feel refreshed, check out the hotel’s many holistic beauty treatments and services.

For more information on this property, please visit their website HERE.

The Peninsula Shanghai

The Peninsula Shanghai stands out from other stays in Shanghai as the only luxury hotel in the city with a customized car fleet. The extent of the Peninsula’s luxuriousness doesn’t end there though – the hotel also boasts Michelin star-rated restaurants, the deluxe garden suite featuring views over the grounds of the former British Consulate, the Peninsula spa, a steam room, sauna, and a huge indoor, heated pool with an art-deco fireplace.

An exciting collaboration between the Peninsula and Sanrio’s Hello Kitty is again happening this year, now until August 31. With this exclusive stay option, guests can enjoy a limited-edition Hello Kitty and Pen Bear plush toy set and specialty themed amenities, including a bathrobe and slippers and more. Hello Kitty is partnering with the Peninsula’s mascot, The Peninsula Bear, to add an adorable touch to guests’ stays.

For more information on this property, please visit their website HERE.

Bellagio Shanghai
The Bellagio By MGM Shanghai balances celebrating traditional heritage with modern luxe. In the suites, guests can enjoy beautiful interior design, large windows to let in plenty of natural light, and breathtaking views of the Suzhou River. The hotel is also available to be booked for events, such as weddings, meetings, and entertaining.

Ameneties provides by the Bellagio Shanghai include a pool, spa, lounge, grand ballroom, and an atrium, which is equipped with state-of-the-art LEDs and an integrated audio system. The hotel also has three restaurants – LAGO (ran by award-wining Chef Julian Serrano, serving authentic Italian cuisine), Mansion on One (serving classic Cantonese delicacies and an authentic Peking Duck), and Café Bellagio (providing the classic American diner experience with modern sensibilities.)

For more information on this property, please visit their website HERE.

Bvlgari Hotel, Shanghai

Bvlgari Hotel, Shanghai is conveniently located between the bustling Shanghai city center and scenic riverbank views. This property is a part of the SUHE CREEK project, and features breathtaking views of the Bund and of Pudong’s dramatic skyline. However, the inside of the hotel – designed the renowned Italian architectural firm Antonio Citterio Patricia Viel – is just as breathtaking with its panoramic views, triple-height Ballroom ceilings, and stunning architectural details.

After exploring all of the sights and excites surrounding the hotel, guests are invited to enjoy the fine cuisine inside. Eateries on the property include Ristorante Niko Romito and Bar and the Bao Li Xuan restaurant. For further indulgence, unwind at the BVLGARI spa, fitness center, or workshop gymnasium.

For more information on this property, please visit their website HERE.

The Middle House
Stylish and sophisticated, The Middle House embraces all of the vibrancy of the surrounding city’s fine dining, art, and fashion scenes. Positioned both culturally and geographically in the heart of Shanghai, The Middle House is the ideal stay for those looking to truly experience where they are staying. Designed by Italian architect Piero Lissoni, the striking property exudes fashionable taste with its art collection, minimalist design, and atmospheric interior that ties in traditional Chinese decor elements.

A wide range of gastronomic experiences are available without even having to step out of the hotel. Enjoy continental cuisine at Cafe Gray Deluxe, Italian al fresco dining at Frasca, Cantonese, Sichuanese and Shanghainese cuisine at Sui Tang Li, or sneak away to the underground cocktail lounge at Sui Tang Shang. Afterwards, relax at the hotel’s pool, Mi Xun spa, gym, or yoga studio.

For more information on this property, please visit their website HERE.

Capella Shanghai, Jian Ye Li
Fashionably positioned at the intersection of Shanghainese courtyard living and Parisian design flair, Capella Shanghai, Jian Ye Li welcomes in guests to its luxurious urban sanctuary. The hotel boasts fine dining, with their three-Michelin star chef Pierre Gagnaire at Le Comptoir de Pierre Gagnaire. Other restaurants include la Terrace (offers many alcoholic beverages, with a focus on fine champagne), la Boulangerie (a french bakery), and le Bar (offers cocktails, with an emphasis on using seasonal ingredients.)

Those who stay at Capella are granted VIP treatment with from the property’s Capella Culturists, who provide specially-tailer, bespoke experiences for each individual stay. Culturists are historians, guardians, and native explorers of Shanghai, so they can provide the best recommendations for local restaurants, places, and people. Culturists will provide each guests with a full itinerary of activities and events hosted in the Living Room during their stay. They can even sign you up for an exploratory bike tour in the historical, surrounding area.

For more information on this property, please visit their website HERE.

The PuLi Hotel and Spa
An urban escape in downtown Shanghai, the PuLi Hotel knows how to create incredible guests experiences through their principals of “modern science” and “ancient healing.” Enjoy fine dining at the hotel’s Michelin starred restaurant, PHÉNIX eatery & bar, garden terrace restaurant, or bar.

Amenties at The PuLi include a 24-hour dedicated guest service specialist, in-room dining, concierge, laundry and valet services, and a Michelin-starred restaurant. Furthermore, the hotel’s Health Club is equipped with a state of the art gymnasium, micro bubble bath, sauna, steam room, pool, experiential showers, whirlpool, 25-metre heated infinity pool, and the UR SPA.

For more information on this property, please visit their website HERE.

The Sukhothai Shanghai
At The Sukhothai Shanghai, it is understood that hospitality is an art form. As such, the hotel prides itself on delivering a personality approach as according to each guests’ personal preference. Take a leisurely load off at the spa with a range of Southeast Asian-oriented body and facial treatments. If thats not your thing, visit the Cha House to observe colonial, baroque-style architecture.

Centrally located downtown, adjacent to two Grade-A office towers and a retail mall, guests are sure to stay entertained their whole trip. For travelers who prioritize business, the hotel’s Grand Shanghai Ballroom is available to be rented out for meetings, weddings and celebrations. The Sukhothai Shanghai knows how to expertly accommodate all of their guests, and as such, was awarded the 2021 Trip Advisor’s Traveler’s Choice Award.

For more information on this property, please visit their website HERE.

Park Hyatt Shanghai
One of the highest hotels in the world, located on floors 79 to 93 of the Shanghai World Financial Center (SWFC), the Park Hyatt Shanghai grants guests unbeatable, breathtaking city views. Positioned above the center of Shanghai’s Lujiazui business district, those who stay at the property are granted a scenic outlook over the city skyline and Huangpu River.

The property is comprised of 173 luxurious rooms, each of which are equipped with a work area, rain shower, and deep soaking tub. Also located within the property are several restaurants and the renowned Water’s Edge Spa. Upon arrival, guests will have access to amenities including free wifi, concierge service, a spa, room service, indoor infinity pool, laundry, meeting facilities, free parking, a fitness center, and more.

For more information on this property, please visit their website HERE.

illustration by Samantha Miduri for use by 360 Magazine

TikTok’s Explosive Growth

TikTok is world’s most popular mobile video app with 660 million downloads in 2020

Despite facing competition and privacy concerns, TikTok’s 2020 growth appears to have solidified. It has now emerged as the most popular mobile video platform for the last year.

Data acquired by Finbold indicates that TikTok was the most popular mobile video app in 2020 globally, with 660.12 million downloads. Singapore’s Likee trails TikTok, accounting for 270.3 million downloads, while SnackVideo ranks third with 233.57 million downloads.

Despite strong brand support and longevity, YouTube ranks fourth with 222.7 million downloads, while TikTok Lite ranks fifth with 141.89 million downloads.

Other mobile video apps with significant downloads include Moj (93.87 million downloads), Zili (84.11 million downloads), MX TakaTak (81.7 million downloads), Josh (78.13 million downloads), and Uvideo (74.95 million downloads).

Pandemic impacts TikTok’s growth 

TikTok’s growth was accelerated early last year and the report highlights some of the driving factors. According to the research report:

“The app experienced rapid growth in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, especially with the emerging lockdowns. During the lockdown, many people had to stay at home with apps like TikTok keeping people engaged leading to a snowballing effect.”

The app’s growth has also emerged from factors like the ability to offer users an alternative way of sharing content online by creating short videos with music, filters, and other captivating features.

TikTok’s growth has come amid increased challenges ranging from privacy concerns in the United States that saw the app almost get banned. Notably, the app was banned in India, losing a key market.

Furthermore, the app is still facing competition from established platforms like Facebook and Instagram.

Read the full story with statistics here

illustration by Samantha Miduri for use by 360 Magazine

Historic Underground Railroad Marker Unveiled in Niagara

The Niagara Falls Underground Railroad Heritage Commission (Commission) and the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation, and Historic Preservation (NYSOPRHP) proudly unveiled a Historic Marker designating the former site of the Cataract House at a press conference on Thursday morning at the park area across from Red Coach Inn, 2 Buffalo Ave, Niagara Falls, NY 14303.

The importance of the Cataract House as the center of Underground Railroad activism in Niagara Falls cannot be overestimated. The African American waiters who worked as Underground Railroad agents made this site one of the most important Underground Railroad nodes in the entire nation. Famous cases included a failed rescue attempt in 1847 and the successful escapes of Cecilia Jane Reynolds (1847), a woman named Martha (1853), and waiter Patrick Sneed (1853). John Morrison, head waiter at the Cataract House, often ferried people across the river himself.

The Cataract House burned down in 1945 and was demolished in 1946. The Historic Marker for the former location of the hotel has been funded by a grant from the William G. Pomeroy Foundation.

“This Historic Marker will now designate a location that was important not only to our local heritage, but our national history as well,” said Saladin Allah, Visitor Experience Specialist, and Community Liaison at the Niagara Falls Underground Railroad Heritage Center, operated by the Commission. “Outside of our community, people may not know much about Niagara Falls beyond the Falls themselves. This Marker will help others realize the vital role our region played in the Underground Railroad and the rich history of Niagara Falls’ Black community. We hope that our representation of this site will help us continue to learn from the past so we can work toward a more just, equitable future.”

Congressman Brian Higgins agreed that the Marker represents an important aspect of the history of our city and country.

“The Cataract House was a pivotal station along the Underground Railroad and its story is told beautifully and poignantly through the Niagara Falls Underground Railroad Heritage Center,” he said. “This Historic Marker further shares the story of the powerful network of ‘conductors’ here in Niagara Falls who bravely helped people escape slavery along the road to freedom.”

The event was attended by several community leaders and local political officials, including City of Niagara Falls Mayor Robert Restaino.

“The Cataract House is an important part of the history of our City,” Mayor Restaino said. “It continues to show the significant impact of Niagara Falls in our national story. We appreciate the work of the Commission and NYSOPRHP in designating this Historic Marker for the Cataract House.”

Speakers at the event included: 

  • Saladin Allah
    • Visitor Experience Specialist & Community Liaison at Niagara Falls Underground Railroad Heritage Center 
    • Descendant of freedom seeker Josiah Henson
  • Douglas J. Perrelli, Ph. D., RPA
    • Chair of NYS Board for Historic Preservation
    • President, New York Archaeological Council (NYAC)
    • Director, Archaeological Survey
    • Clinical Assistant Professor, Anthropology, University at Buffalo
  • Mark Mistretta, RLA
    • Western District Director, New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation
  • Assemblyman Angelo Morinello (R, C, I-Niagara Falls)
  • Robert M. Restaino, Mayor of Niagara Falls

Following the unveiling, visitors were invited to walk in the footsteps of freedom seekers from the hotel site to the brink of the Niagara River. For media files, visit here.

About the Niagara Falls Underground Railroad Heritage Commission

The Niagara Falls Underground Railroad Heritage Commission Center manages the Niagara Falls Underground Railroad Heritage Area, a part of the NYSOPRHP Heritage Area Program. The Commission also operates the Niagara Falls Underground Railroad Heritage Center, an award-winning experiential museum located inside the former 1863 U.S. Custom House attached to the Niagara Falls Amtrak Station. The Commission encourages and fosters the discovery, illumination, and celebration of the rich heritage of the Underground Railroad and the Abolitionist movement throughout the City of Niagara Falls and its environs. The center, which opened in May 2018 after 11 years of planning, is located inside the former 1863 U.S. Custom House attached to the Niagara Falls Amtrak station. The center sits adjacent to the location of the former International Suspension Bridge, a point of crossing for many freedom seekers including Harriet Tubman. 

The Heritage Center preserves the historic role of the people of Niagara Falls in facilitating freedom for the oppressed. The places and stories associated with this network of freedom seekers, free African Americans, and abolitionists evoke powerful themes in American history and celebrate the bravery of the men and women who risked their lives to achieve the most basic rights of liberty. Learn more here.

William G. Pomeroy Foundation

The William G. Pomeroy Foundation is committed to supporting the celebration and preservation of community history; and to raising awareness, supporting research, and improving the quality of care for patients and their families who are facing a blood cancer diagnosis.

illustration by Samantha Miduri for use by 360 Magazine

SolesbyMICHELIN Mizuno Wave Mujin 8 Contest

solesbyMICHELIN gives you the possibility to win an exclusive pair of the brand new Wave Mujin 8, the new trail running shoe born from the consolidated partnership between Mizuno and solesbyMICHELIN. How?

It is very simple: enter the website, register, and subscribe to the newsletter.

The winner will be drawn from all those who have subscribed to the newsletter during the contest period, as well as those who have already subscribed and will update their preferences during the contest period.

For more information, terms and conditions click here.

What are you waiting for? Run on the website and be the first one to win a pair of Mizuno Wave Mujin 8!

Mizuno Wave Mujin 8 is the perfect shoe to tackle any trail over long distances, even on the most difficult terrains. The MICHELIN sole, designed exclusively by JV International for solesbyMICHELIN, has a light and dynamic compound, representing an excellent mix of grip, technology, and lightness; the new tread design significantly improves traction and grip on all surfaces and helps prevent the accumulation of dirt on particularly muddy grounds thanks to a self-cleaning system of the blocks. The external part of the sole is purposely tough to increase durability, while the arched side knobs help in case of obstacles. The EVA layer positioned in the forefoot area helps absorb impacts while the heel area is reinforced to allow easier and more comfortable braking during descents.

illustration by Samantha Miduri for use by 360 Magazine

Introducing The Morgan Plus Four CX-T

Morgan unveils the Plus Four CX-T, a car with adventure at its core. A vehicle with the capability not yet witnessed on a Morgan sports car, it opens up the possibility of routes, landscapes, and destinations inaccessible by Morgan cars until now.

The Morgan Plus Four CX-T is inspired by Morgan’s well-documented history of competing in all-terrain endurance trials. As early as 1911, Morgan sports cars were competing and winning in trials competitions, and this spirit of adventure has been key to shaping the Morgan brand ever since. The more adventurous journeys that are frequently undertaken by Morgan customers all over the world have further fueled the desire for Morgan to imagine the Plus Four CX-T.

Following the launch of the Plus Four in 2020, Morgan partnered with Rally Raid UK, renowned creator of Dakar race cars, to jointly design and engineer the Plus Four CX-T. One of the aims of the project is to demonstrate the capability and durability of Morgan’s new CX-Generation platform, along with the Plus Four upon which the CX-T is based.

Just eight vehicles will be built, priced at £170,000 plus local taxes and supplied in full overland specification, with each customer having the opportunity to work alongside Morgan’s design team to specify their own CX-T. Every Plus Four CX-T is built at Morgan’s factory in Malvern, Worcestershire, before undergoing the final preparation and setup at Rally Raid UK’s own workshop facilities. Morgan’s design and engineering team have worked alongside Rally Raid UK throughout the program to define the concept, specification, technical attributes, and aesthetic of the model.

Technical details

The exterior of the Plus Four CX-T is designed to maximize luggage and equipment carrying capacity, and provide the occupant protection necessary for extreme environments. Simultaneously, Morgan has ensured that its visual design reflects this capability and purposefulness.

Most prominently, the rear panel of the vehicle has been replaced with an equipment rack, with unique side body panels designed to be reminiscent of the classic four-seater Morgan.
The rack houses two ruggedized and waterproof Pelican luggage cases, a Zarges aluminum tool/storage box, two Rotopax 11-liter containers, and two spare wheel/tire assemblies.

Additionally, for those who venture further off the beaten track, recovery equipment is mounted on the exterior of the car within easy reach when required. All exterior mounting systems for all storage and equipment have been painstakingly engineered to be tough and easy to access when needed.

The external protective exoskeleton can also be adapted to carry leisure equipment such as bikes and surfboards, to complement the lifestyle activities of the owner, while the removable side screens can be mounted onto the roof of the vehicle, allowing them to be carried unobtrusively in case of a change in weather conditions.

Rally Raid UK undertook a complete study of the standard Plus Four vehicle to determine the possibilities for the conversion. This study included durability assessments of the platform, drivetrain, and suspension systems.

The suspension has been designed to be expedition-ready: tough and fit for purpose. Durability, and a drive-over obstacle clearance of 230mm, have been achieved using modified Plus Six wishbones. These widen the track and allow for the extra arc of movement required to achieve the desired suspension performance. The wheel arch apertures have also been modified, allowing the suspension to compress deep into the wheel well, providing maximum traction and stability.

EXE-TC coil over assemblies with internal bump stops are used, these have been developed by EXE-TC specifically for the vehicle. These assemblies are born from off-road competition and are calibrated to provide the ideal balance of compliance and durability.

In addition to the main suspension hardware, the lower suspension arms contain bespoke bushes which further increase durability. The combined suspension package is optimized to undertake journeys never before attempted in a Morgan sports car while ensuring composure and comfort during any excursion into the backcountry.

A five-piece underbody protection system – comprising an engine guard, rear chassis guard, midsection shield, and rear undertray – helps to protect the chassis and important components from damage when driving in extreme conditions. The car is also fitted with a full bespoke exhaust system with a rear side exit that improves the departure angle and contributes to 230mm of ground clearance.

The Plus Four CX-T uses a BMW X-Drive electronic differential with bespoke software, calibrated and tested specifically for the application. Switches inside the cabin allow a choice of three modes to be selected depending upon the driving conditions; each mode varies the degree of differential lock that is applied. Selecting ‘Road’ mode fully opens the differential, while ‘All-Terrain’ mode applies approximately 45% lock to the rear differential, allowing some variation in torque distribution between the rear wheels. ‘All-Terrain – Extreme’ mode fully locks the rear differential, providing equal torque to both rear wheels. The two All-Terrain modes are designed to be used when tackling rough surfaces and low-traction conditions. The final drive ratio has also been shortened to account for the larger diameter tires and suit all-terrain usage.

Inside the cabin of the Plus, Four CX-T features have been added to improve occupant comfort and usability in remote environments. A RAM mount track is built into the dashboard to allow the secure fixing of a variety of devices such as phones or cameras. A flexible map light, pencil, and notebook holder have also been integrated, all designed to withstand operation in harsh driving environments.Cabin stowage has also been optimized with the addition of a removable map/document holder and insulated cool bag, both located in the passenger footwell. A custom-made first aid kit is mounted to the internal roll cage behind the seats. Just like the exterior equipment, every interior feature has been designed with accessibility and convenience in mind, whether this is for use in remote conditions or the leisure pursuits of the owner.

The cabin is enclosed within a composite hardtop which is unique to the Plus Four CX-T and has been intricately engineered to fit between the internal and external roll cages.The Morgan Plus Four CX-T is the second of two special projects being produced by Morgan in 2021, with the first being the Plus 8 GTR. The introduction of the Plus Four CX-T also coincides with the announcement of Model Year 22 updates to the Plus Four and Plus Six and helps to inform technical and aesthetic advancements for Morgan’s current and future range of vehicles. The Plus Four CX-T is on sale immediately, with all vehicles due to be built before the end of 2021.

Jonathan Wells, Head of Design, Morgan Motor Company, said: “The Morgan design team has been conceptualizing modern-day trialing vehicles for many years. Around 18 months ago, our investors and CEO, Steve Morris, were in the studio and remarked how incredible it would be to bring one of these drawings to life. The project was unrestrained and born entirely from a desire to create an exciting British adventure vehicle. The CX-T, like many recent Morgan vehicles, demonstrates the flexibility of the Morgan design. For me, it’s a complete package: historical integrity, legitimate capability, and a brand-new adventure-lead aesthetic.”

Mike Jones, Rally Raid UK, said: “Applying my experience of 13 Dakar Rallies, 60 Dakar vehicle builds and a lifetime of overland adventuring to an unconventional sports car such as a Morgan has been an interesting and rewarding project. Having the opportunity to design a car for such a prestigious marque has been a responsibility that I never imagined I would have. Rally Raid UK and Morgan have engaged with industry-leading suppliers to source the highest quality components, as well as designing a range of bespoke parts that will remain unique to the model. The Morgan Plus Four CX-T is a genuine overland adventure vehicle and I look forward to seeing the incredible destinations that owners will find themselves in.”

illustration by Samantha Miduri for use by 360 Magazine

Rick James Documentary Feature Premieres September 3rd

SHOWTIME® has released a trailer for BITCHIN’: THE SOUND AND FURY OF RICK JAMES, directed by Emmy®-nominee Sacha Jenkins (WU-TANG CLAN: OF MICS AND MEN, BURN, MOTHERF*CKER, BURN!). BITCHIN’ is an intimate yet propulsive look at Rick James, one of rock, funk, and R&B’s most legendary and often underappreciated figures. Featuring rare footage of James’ incredible live shows, never-before-seen home video, original interviews with legendary artists, collaborators, and friends, and a treasure trove of recorded interviews with James (who died in 2004), the documentary presents a full picture of James’ dramatic rise and fall, focusing in on the “Punk-Funk” music he left behind. The film, which screened at the Tribeca Festival® in June, will premiere on Friday, September 3 at 9 p.m. ET/PT. Click here to watch and share the trailer.

Best remembered as the creator of hits such as “Superfreak,” “Give It To Me Baby” and “Mary Jane,” James blazed new trails in American music and global culture in the ’70s and ’80s as a songwriter, performer, and producer, collaborating with luminaries such as Neil Young, Joni Mitchell, The Temptations, Smokey Robinson, Nile Rodgers, Eddie Murphy, Teena Marie, The Mary Jane Girls, and M.C. Hammer. BITCHIN’ presents a full and complete picture of James’ life as told by those who knew him. At the center of it all is the “Punk-Funk” that encompassed a unique swath of 20th-century music history from jazz to soul to R&B to rock and eventually, to hip-hop. Friday, August 6 marks the 17th anniversary of James’ death. 

BITCHIN’: THE SOUND AND FURY OF RICK JAMES is a Mass Appeal production for SHOWTIME, directed by Jenkins, produced by Steve Rivo, and written by Jenkins, Rivo, and Jason Pollard. The film is executive produced by Peter Bittenbender and Jenkins for Mass Appeal, and Douglas Banker and Ty James.

Showtime Networks Inc. (SNI), a wholly-owned subsidiary of ViacomCBS Inc., owns and operates the premium service SHOWTIME®, which features critically acclaimed original series, provocative documentaries, box-office hit films, comedy and music specials, and hard-hitting sports. SHOWTIME is available as a stand-alone streaming service across all major streaming devices and Showtime.com, as well as via cable, DBS, telco, and streaming video providers. SNI also operates the premium services THE MOVIE CHANNEL and FLIX®, as well as on-demand versions of all three brands. SNI markets and distributes sports and entertainment events for exhibition to subscribers on a pay-per-view basis through SHOWTIME PPV®. For more information, click here. 

About Mass Appeal

Mass Appeal is an entertainment company dedicated to telling stories from the perspective of those who shape and shift culture. Since 1996, we have documented the emerging movements that influence popular ideas. Today, Mass Appeal is the elevated voice of Hip Hop and its ever-expanding sphere of influence. Integrated offerings in content, music, and creative services stoke Mass Appeal’s ability to maximize the impact of our output. Our diverse school of thought separates us from friends and foes alike.