From the wild plains of the Far West to bustling Broadway, from 5th Avenue to Mount Rushmore, from the ice rink at the Rockefeller Center to the parquet floor of the big NBA matches… In every field, from music and film to sport and food, the United States is an inspiration to the rest of the world, radiating with exuberant creativity and cultivating the art of entertainment like nobody else. Everything that makes up the richness of this giant, made up of the diversity of its communities, now epitomises the ultimate benchmark when it comes to style as well as habits.
Much more than the sum of its 50 states, the United States of America is both a very concrete reality and a myth, a huge allegory of an urban landscape of concrete and steel and an ode to nature at its most majestic. From the multisensory chaos of New York, to the sunny nonchalance of Los Angeles, via the architectural avant-garde of Chicago, this country is the land of a thousand faces, each one more surprising and fascinating than the last.
Cooking up inventive, subtle food, chefs understand this plurality and incorporate it into their dishes: Thomas Keller, in his two Michelin-starred restaurants in New York and California, Daniel Boulud, ambassador for French cuisine on the other side of the Atlantic at his 13 addresses, and Grant Achatz in Chicago.
It’s hard to find common ground between the rushing yuppie charging along Wall Street and the reclusive artist in Greenwich Village, the ambitious actress honing her skills on Hollywood Boulevard and the Texan cowboy looking forward to his next rodeo. Between the surfer on the beaches of Malibu, the experienced skier in Aspen, Colorado, the wise historian at the MOMA and the Las Vegas showgirl. Apart from the passionate love for the star-spangled banner that flutters outside every home.
Everything that has anything to do with the United States quickly turns into a cult treasure: Route 66, the mere mention of which gives bikers from around the world a real thrill; the magical greenery of Yosemite National Park; the beauty of the Appalachian Mountains or the deserts of Nevada or Arizona; John Ford’s beloved Monument Valley, or the steep streets of San Francisco, its Golden Gate Bridge and streetcars; the unbridled jazz nights in New Orleans, popular around the country, or the country rock of Nashville; the green baize of the tables on the Las Vegas Strip… Nowhere else on the planet inspires the traveller with such a thirst for escapism as this Leviathan between the Atlantic and the Pacific.