Deutsche rejects Harvey Nicks bid

Tycoon to take Harvey Nicks private

Harvey Nichols, Edinburgh

Edinburgh's new Harvey Nichols comes with the obligatory modish top-floor restaurant. Slightly less than absolutely fabulous, finds Tracey MacLeod, and far too much headless chicken

Bites: The latest hip lunch spot? Why, it's your local department store

Harvey Nichols, House of Fraser, Peter Jones, Selfridges

Your highness, is that Gucci or Dior under your veil?

Saudi Arabia is strictly Islamic. Women must wear robes and veils. So why has Harvey Nichols opened a store there? To cater for very rich, fashion-conscious princesses, of course

Sales Guide: Troubled stores ask public: please shop generously

THE SEASONAL high street sales kicked off yesterday with retailers hoping that a surge of business in the run-up the millennium will make up for dismal pre-Christmas trading.

Eating Out: Buy now while excuse lasts

COMING right up: New Year's Eve with a vengeance. New Year's Eve on steroids. The one-and-only, long-awaited Millennium. If you haven't already done your buying for the big occasion, put down that turkey sandwich and read on.

Real homes: The five-stop shop for a perfect NYE

The Conran Shop

Fashion: You sexy thing

Beautiful evening pieces don't come cheap, so this week we've gone, um, a little over budget (well it is the Millennium!). First things first. This season is about making an impact, so forget about black - this is the perfect opportunity to glitz it up in delicate, embellished fabrics and sexy silver, gold and gun-metals.

Fashion: Party pieces

Make sure you're right on time for the party of the millennium by combining elements from the past with fashion statements of the moment. A handful of vintage sequins here, some glitter prints and tiger stripes there, and add ruffles, diamante and a corsage for the full glorious effect

The Weasel: Chocolate: sex education for grown-ups

In last week's issue of The New Yorker, an advert for a fancy new TV was headed "The male version of chocolate". A few pages on, another ad for ("sex education for grown-ups") showed a tasteful post-coital scene (a female foot in bed) accompanied by the quote, "That was better than chocolate". Crumbs! You'll understand why I hurtled pell- mell to the International Festival of Chocolate held in London last weekend.

Fashion: Industrial strength

Sheepskin, leather and pinstripe are helping to give utility wear a new
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Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
Minoan Crete and Santorini
Prices correct as of 17 April 2015
NHS struggling to monitor the safety and efficacy of its services outsourced to private providers

Who's monitoring the outsourced NHS services?

A report finds that private firms are not being properly assessed for their quality of care
Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

The Tory MP said he did not want to stand again unless his party's manifesto ruled out a third runway. But he's doing so. Watch this space
How do Greek voters feel about Syriza's backtracking on its anti-austerity pledge?

How do Greeks feel about Syriza?

Five voters from different backgrounds tell us what they expect from Syriza's charismatic leader Alexis Tsipras
From Iraq to Libya and Syria: The wars that come back to haunt us

The wars that come back to haunt us

David Cameron should not escape blame for his role in conflicts that are still raging, argues Patrick Cockburn
Sam Baker and Lauren Laverne: Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

A new website is trying to declutter the internet to help busy women. Holly Williams meets the founders
Heston Blumenthal to cook up a spice odyssey for British astronaut manning the International Space Station

UK's Major Tum to blast off on a spice odyssey

Nothing but the best for British astronaut as chef Heston Blumenthal cooks up his rations
John Harrison's 'longitude' clock sets new record - 300 years on

‘Longitude’ clock sets new record - 300 years on

Greenwich horologists celebrate as it keeps to within a second of real time over a 100-day test
Fears in the US of being outgunned in the vital propaganda wars by Russia, China - and even Isis - have prompted a rethink on overseas broadcasters

Let the propaganda wars begin - again

'Accurate, objective, comprehensive': that was Voice of America's creed, but now its masters want it to promote US policy, reports Rupert Cornwell
Why Japan's incredible long-distance runners will never win the London Marathon

Japan's incredible long-distance runners

Every year, Japanese long-distance runners post some of the world's fastest times – yet, come next weekend, not a single elite competitor from the country will be at the London Marathon
Why does Tom Drury remain the greatest writer you've never heard of?

Tom Drury: The quiet American

His debut was considered one of the finest novels of the past 50 years, and he is every bit the equal of his contemporaries, Jonathan Franzen, Dave Eggers and David Foster Wallace
You should judge a person by how they peel a potato

You should judge a person by how they peel a potato

Dave Hax's domestic tips are reminiscent of George Orwell's tea routine. The world might need revolution, but we like to sweat the small stuff, says DJ Taylor
Beige is back: The drab car colours of the 1970s are proving popular again

Beige to the future

Flares and flounce are back on catwalks but a revival in ’70s car paintjobs was a stack-heeled step too far – until now
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's dishes highlight the delicate essence of fresh cheeses

Bill Granger cooks with fresh cheeses

More delicate on the palate, milder, fresh cheeses can also be kinder to the waistline
Aston Villa vs Liverpool: 'This FA Cup run has been wonderful,' says veteran Shay Given

Shay Given: 'This FA Cup run has been wonderful'

The Villa keeper has been overlooked for a long time and has unhappy memories of the national stadium – but he is savouring his chance to play at Wembley
Timeless drama of Championship race in league of its own - Michael Calvin

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Timeless drama of Championship race in league of its own