©Harry Mitchell

Ex-homeless teenager with room of her own

A bedsit in a London hostel run by the charity Centrepoint has given 17-year-old the space and stability to develop her talents

Nuytsia floribunda (Australian Christmas tree) survives by stealing water from its host plants
©David Steele/Alamy

Parasitic plants with a role to play

They can be pests, taking nutrients and damaging their hosts, but they can also be useful

Robin Lane Fox

From left: Niobe; Perle d’Azur; Durandii ©RBflora/Alamy, Robert Mabic/Gap Photos, Rosal
With so many to choose from, here is a guide to my top six and what to select for particular locations
Parkroyal on Pickering, a hotel in Singapore designed by WOHA Architects
©Patrick Bingham-Hall

The curse of ‘green fuzz’ on buildings

Is the trend among architects to cover their creations in foliage simply an attempt to hide their uninspiring designs?

©Tom St Aubyn Photography Ltd

Square living in London’s Ladbroke Grove

Homes in the area’s plush squares are highly sought after by families seeking easy access to private communal gardens

John Nash’s scagliola columns in the Music Room of Buckingham Palace
©Royal Collection

The art of scagliola: masters of mock rock

A workshop near Florence celebrates the Italian heritage of imitation marble and refines its use in contemporary design

Kennebunkport, Maine: fit for a president

It is already home to George HW Bush but the laid-back resort is keen to widen its appeal and become a year-round destination

Tony Smith at Quinta de Covela, his wine estate in the Douro Valley
©Antonio Pedrosa

Ex-journalist’s wine estate in Portugal

Tony Smith spent 20 years as a foreign correspondent before taking over an abandoned vineyard business in the Douro Valley

Bluebells in the New Forest
©Alamy/Joana Kruse

New Forest property: where to branch out

Prices in southern England’s national park are rising fast — but it is the lesser-known villages that are luring buyers

Dame Judith Hackitt in the conservatory of her home in south Oxfordshire
©Victoria Birkinshaw

Judith Hackitt, health and safety mythbuster

The former chair of Britain’s Health and Safety Executive on why young people’s education should include an element of danger

Escaldes-Engordany with, in the centre, the glass tower of the Caldea hot spring complex

Revival hopes for Andorra’s housing market

Prices for prime real estate have been stagnant since 2008 but new economic reforms have led to an increase in buyer interest