We travel as much as we can here at the BUILDblog. Give us a bit of free time and we’re gonzo. We enjoy doing our homework before a trip, we savor getting into the neighborhoods and local spots of the cities we visit, and we do our best to document it all and post thorough reviews to share. In a nutshell, we’re travel-geeks.
The last couple of years have seen a quantum leap in travel based technology. Key tools have allowed us to travel quicker, cheaper and more intelligently. We’ve realized that these tools are so important to how we explore the world that it’s worth a blog post. Today’s post covers 10 tools that we keep using time and time again. There must be hundreds more out there, and we’re always up for kicking the tires on new tools, so hit that comments button and share your favorite digital tools for the new age of travel.
The Foursquare tracking application makes it extremely easy to document your location and see where your friends are. It’s become our “memory” in terms of where we’ve been and the database provides an excellent reference later when we’re blogging about our travels. It also includes tips from people who have been there before. Add us on your account here and follow the BUILDblog and The Modern List as we track down cool new places around the globe.
We love the Tablet Hotels website because it filters down all the hotels out there and presents well designed, modern lodging with good atmospheres. The interface is clean and the photos do an excellent job of illustrating the vibe of each hotel. You can become a member of the site and keep a pulse on great deals (and the deals are truly great and exclusive to members), you can also use the site to document favorite spots and keep notes.
Jetsetter is a website that specializes in hotel stay sales and focuses on boutique hotels all over the world. The venues are so chic and sale prices so good that it can be worthwhile to lock in a good deal and arrange the trip around the hotel.
i-escape is a good reservation website that deals in boutique hotels for the design conscious.
Mrandmrssmith.com is another good reservation website that deals in boutique hotels for the design conscious (it’s always good to compare a few sites).
Every now and again we’re in foreign territory and we haven’t done our homework. Hunger hits or our thirst for an evening drinky sets in and we need a cool spot pronto. The AroundMe application comes to the rescue and provides a quick list of places in your immediate vicinity. Martini in hand – another crisis has been avoided.
Running around looking at architecture all the time means we also take a lot of photos of buildings and cities. When it’s too conspicuous or cumbersome to lug around the SLR camera, the iPhone camera is essential. Best Camera is a mini photo editor to give your photos that pop they might need; each filter is calibrated based on formulas from the rock stars at Chase Jarvis Studio. In addition to producing hot photos, the app makes a direct connection for posting to all your favorite networks like facebook and twitter.
The Pano application allows us to take up to 8 photos on our iPhones and then the software stitches them all together to produce one slick panoramic photo.
Google maps is an essential piece of technology on the go – it’s GPS in the palm of your hand with hot-links to hotels, restaurants and other venues.
The Modern List website is a guide to urban venues that we keep for ourselves and share with our friends. It’s intended for the design conscious interested in experiencing modern architecture, design, art, food and culture. It’s been designed for use on the iPhone and it’s constantly being updated with new hotspots.