Short cuts

Aswan The Old Cataract, the grand hotel beside the Nile where Agatha Christie worked on several books, has reopened after a three-year refurbishment. Built by Thomas Cook in 1899, the hotel sits on a granite plateau overlooking Elephantine Island and has a guest book ranging from Tsar Nicholas II to Sir Winston Churchill and Lady Thatcher. The number of rooms has been cut from 275 to 138 and a spa has been added, inspired by French cuisine, with treatments categorised as starters, main dishes and desserts. Doubles from $280.

Holland Fed up with budget airlines’ charges, Irish engineer and frequent flyer John Power has come up with a novel solution: “wearable luggage”. He has set up a company, Jaktogo, to make coats full of pockets into which up to 10kg of luggage can be crammed. The coats can be worn while checking in or boarding, then folded and converted into ordinary bags. Jaktogo, based in the Dutch city of Breda, has been selling online since 2010, but now plans to expand into the UK, Ireland and the US, as well as broadening the range to include ponchos and dresses. A spokesman said airlines had so far turned a blind eye, though one carrier refused to carry an advert in its inflight magazine. Prices start from £51.

London The Frieze contemporary art fair ended last Sunday, but next weekend brings the rather different Freeze festival to the capital. Now in its fourth year, Freeze revolves around a 32m-high ramp built beside Battersea Power Station. Covered in 200 tonnes of artificial snow, the ramp is used for a series of freestyle ski and snowboard contests and the event also features shops, bars and music from bands including Groove Armada and The Streets. Tickets from £37.

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