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George Ortiz was one of the great contemporary collectors. He came to public attention in 1994, when the Royal Academy showed his breathtaking collection of antiquities. Not all were impressed: Lord Renfrew criticised the show, talking of “the large-scale looting which is the ultimate source of so much of what he is able to exhibit.” This stung, because Ortiz’s collecting was guided by the concept of André Malraux’s Musée Imaginaire, where objects could be viewed without the preconceptions that grouped them by country and period – contrary to the traditional practice of curators and art historians.

Freshen up: the 1920s townhouse has a new lease of life

Room Service: Lastarria, Santiago de Chile

Colonial chic in a buzzy barrio

He was the most reviled and misunderstood monarch in English history, but one of the last remaining mysteries of Richard III could soon be resolved with the help of modern science and a fragment of DNA

Is the body in the car park really Richard III? At last, the answer

...and it could prove that he really didn’t commit the greatest crime in royal history

Snow Dalek - Every feeling removed except for hating +0° weather

Apocalypse snow: snowmen of the moment, and more icy fun

Nothing invokes British silliness like a few days of snowy weather. Here we award the weekend's snowpeople a five-carrot ranking and defrost the best of the rest of the icy fun

In the zone: hidden away at Piccadilly Circus Tube station is a clock showing world times

London: Guide to the world in Zones One to Six

As the Underground marks its 150th birthday, Simon Calder reveals some Piccadilly secrets

Hello chaps, welcome to the club: Stores embrace the silent revolution in menswear

Menswear stores are bringing out the big guns in their battle with online retailers – and that means on-site barber shops and billiards tables

A good vintage: Edelweiss's weekend breakfast room

B&B and Beyond: Pension Edelweiss, Marseille

The upmarket retro decor in this Marseille guesthouse suits the city's personality perfectly, says Rhiannon Harries

On a roll: a decadent bath

A dream stay in the Inca heartland

Room Service: Palacio Nazarenas, Cusco

Andras Schiff, Wigmore Hall, ****/ Behzod Abduraimov, Queen Elizabeth Hall, *****

There’s no definitive way to play Beethoven’s piano sonatas: there’s an infinite number, as befits this New Testament of classical pianism. Daniel Barenboim’s way, in his Southbank cycle four years ago, may not have been flawless, but it was utterly beguiling.

Up in the air: the rooftop pool

Room service: Feel at home in buzzy Bangkok

Oriental Residence,  Thailand  By Mark Stratton

Grand designs: the Foyer Maeterlinck and spiral stairs

Baronial splendour for the 21st century

Room Service: Grand Hotel Reylof, Ghent

Mark Humphrey: Art in Life, Osborne Samuel Gallery, London

"This is my art," Mark Humphrey announces in a film that accompanies his new exhibition of fashion, furniture, sculpture, architecture, and interior design.

Observations: How to drive a Dalek

Barnaby Edwards is the closest you’ll ever get to meeting a Dalek. A principal operator since 2005, he’s the guy sitting inside the Dalek – bringing the Doctor’s most feared opponents to life.

David and Jackie Siegel at their home in Florida

A broken American dream recorded in full colour (lawsuit attached, of course)

David Siegel was living the American dream. A self-made billionaire, married to a former model 31 years his junior, he travelled in private jets and lunched on caviar. Evenings found him at Florida's society events, quaffing champagne with celebrities, sports stars, beauty queens.

Album: Makrokosmos Quartet, Round Midnight (HatArt)

Blending percussive pianos with melodic percussion, the Makrokosmos Quartet are perfectly placed to explore the interface of classical and jazz, as on this series of commissions exploring the influence of Thelonious Monk, the most inventive jazz composer of the last century.

Wayne Manor - a secluded three-story Jacobean mansion

How much would it cost to buy Batman's house?

Wayne Manor would be the estate agent's dream property to market, though the mortgage might be a bit hefty

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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
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War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn
Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

The shadow Home Secretary on fighting radical Islam, protecting children, and why anyone in Labour who's thinking beyond May must 'sort themselves out'
A bad week for the Greens: Leader Natalie Bennett's 'car crash' radio interview is followed by Brighton council's failure to set a budget due to infighting

It's not easy being Green

After a bad week in which its leader had a public meltdown and its only city council couldn't agree on a budget vote, what next for the alternative party? It's over to Caroline Lucas to find out
Gorillas nearly missed: BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter

Gorillas nearly missed

BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter
Downton Abbey effect sees impoverished Italian nobles inspired to open their doors to paying guests for up to €650 a night

The Downton Abbey effect

Impoverished Italian nobles are opening their doors to paying guests, inspired by the TV drama
China's wild panda numbers have increased by 17% since 2003, new census reveals

China's wild panda numbers on the up

New census reveals 17% since 2003
Barbara Woodward: Britain's first female ambassador to China intends to forge strong links with the growing economic superpower

Our woman in Beijing builds a new relationship

Britain's first female ambassador to China intends to forge strong links with growing economic power
Courage is rare. True humility is even rarer. But the only British soldier to be awarded the Victoria Cross in Afghanistan has both

Courage is rare. True humility is even rarer

Beware of imitations, but the words of the soldier awarded the Victoria Cross were the real thing, says DJ Taylor
Alexander McQueen: The catwalk was a stage for the designer's astonishing and troubling vision

Alexander McQueen's astonishing vision

Ahead of a major retrospective, Alexander Fury talks to the collaborators who helped create the late designer's notorious spectacle
New BBC series savours half a century of food in Britain, from Vesta curries to nouvelle cuisine

Dinner through the decades

A new BBC series challenged Brandon Robshaw and his family to eat their way from the 1950s to the 1990s
Philippa Perry interview: The psychotherapist on McDonald's, fancy specs and meeting Grayson Perry on an evening course

Philippa Perry interview

The psychotherapist on McDonald's, fancy specs and meeting Grayson Perry on an evening course
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Bill Granger's Indonesian stir-fry recipes

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The Last Word: For the good of the game: why on earth don’t we leave Fifa?

Michael Calvin's Last Word

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Scientists hail daily pill that protects against HIV infection

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