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Carefully curated by      Francois      &      Matt

Monday 24/11

09.00 – Start the week with a healthy breakfast and get an energy boost at O! Cafe. The perfect combination of ingredients is the secret of this place with a menu developed by a nutritionist and prepared only with the finest organic products.

12.00 – Next stop, A.Kasteyev State Museum of Arts  for the Art and Collectibles pre-auction exhibition, the seventh international bidding auction by BonArt. It feature works from Kazakh, Russian and western European schools of painting during the 19th and 20th centuries. A must-visit for all connoisseurs! At the exhibition one can enjoy works by the likes of: Ivan Aivazovsky, Ivan Shishkin, Richard Sommer, Nicholas Karazina, Janat Shardenov and other artists.

14.00 – Rest-up at and grab a bite to eat at Cafe de Paris. A French restaurant with cosy atmosphere and tasty food with French music and French wine.

Tuesday 25/11

10.00 – Green Bazaar – A definite must when in Almaty. If you can eat it or drink it then you can find it here! Homemade cheeses, camel milk, horse meat and the local famous apples, Apport. It has three levels, but you’ll find the bargains in the basement where the choice is the same, but the prices lower! Top tip: You may not notice the lower floor when entering so many ”beginners” buy products on the more expensive second floor. Upstairs you can find a simple local cafe where you can find – according to word on the street – the tastiest dishes in the city (… and possibly even a live act).

13.00 –  Italian restaurant Pomodoro, under the direction of chef Giorgio Palazzi. You can often meet him here, his warm charm loved by the patron who he seems to know all by name. Every week there is special dish not listed on the menu. Try the pasta with sea food and white wine sauce – delicious!

19.00 – PaperWallTheater present HeSheLIfe as a part of the International Theater Festival. This show from Kiev is full of music, emotions and brooding silence. The medium is paper, and many types of it: cartons, rolls of office paper, the list goes on.

Wednesday 26/11

10.00 – Bulcoffski Cafe. Fantastic views and a fantastic choice for breakfast. Minimalistic design gives the cafe a real edge. A great place to be alone to enjoy a cup of coffee and browse the latest magazines. They have their own talisman – a rabbit called Skisha – you will find him under the stairs.

12.00 – Art Space Gallery presents A Poly Painting. An exhibition by Saule Suleymenova, a contemporary artist from Kazakhstan. She always creates unique and memorable pieces, this time she uses plastic bags as a conduit for her art.

18.00 – Time for some real fresh air now, head to the mountains and the sport complex, Medeu. A treasure of the region where you can spend time all year round. Just 30 minutes away from the city with a direct bus link. During this season the best thing to do is ice skate. The rink has evening sessions which are more exciting during the week. Dance music and hot tea in a thermos will keep you warm. Skates available to rent and buy.

Thursday 27/11

09.00 – Want the air EVEN fresher? Okay then, it’s off to Chymbulak. Take it easy or quicken the pace with some skiing or snowboarding. Easy access by purpose-built cableway from Medeu to Chymbulak. Enjoy breakfast in the mountains, what could be better? Escape from the city and spend all day at this magical retreat. It gets pretty crowded during the weekend, so a week day is the best time if you want to relax. Hot croissant with aromatic coffee with deep breaths of mountain air and the sunshine on your cheeks at the cafe, Marrone Rosso – idyllic! Dress warm, it can get chilly up there!

19.00Compote Studio. After a long day in the mountains you can take a rest and go to cook something special at a practical cookery school. Today it’s traditional Korean cuisine with the co-founder of the studio, Oksana Kim-Flayosc. Don’t worry if you’re on your own, it’s a great place to meet people and make friends. Better to book ahead, these classes are in demand!

22.00 – 6/45 bar. Best cocktails in the city. Good music and a dynamic atmosphere attracts the ‘in crowd’. Try some shots, find a partner at the bar and take it from there! It all makes for a night to remember!

Friday 28/11

12.00 – Check out Booxikov Workshop Space’s art exhibition of young Kazakh artist, Saule Dyussenbina. In her artworks she shows women’s bodies covered with Kazakh national patterns. An unusual way to portray the modern rhythm of life where symbols and elements of ethnic iconography reflect our true roots.

Here you’ll also find the Mechanical Piano Shop/Gallery, for people looking for something a little more unique. Nurlan Turekhanov and Aigul Kuandykova, the couple which created this concept, are well known in Almaty. They have several design and fashion projects which is putting the city on trend. You can find some fantastic women’s fashion and some interior products and decoration here.

14.00 – Lunch at East to discover some modern pan-Asian cuisine. You’ll find an interesting fusion of Vietnamese, Japanese, Chinese and Thai dishes.

22.00 – Chukotka/Dacha. The weekend starts with Red Bull Music Academy Night. Hot spot for drinks, good music and dancing all night. From the opening, this bar became one of the most popular in Almaty. Professional bar staff always get your booze on time and the casual atmosphere allows you to mingle. Tonight showcases several talented DJs: Arenov (Kazakhstan) Olefonken (Norway) Lipelis (Russia) and Gladkiy (Kazakhstan).

Saturday 29/11

10.00 – Coffeedelia. After a “stormy night” you’d better have a good breakfast! One of the oldest cafes in the city is still full every weekend during the morning. It’s good tradition to meet friends for coffee and a catch up here.

20.00 – Dance Theater Sisters Gabbasovih. The premiere of People of Our City. If you want to understand what it is like to be an Almatinian through choreography and music then this is the show for you. The director shows his look on life with good humour, sarcasm and sincere love for the residents of the city, soundtracked by modern composers.

21.00 – Raketa bar. The creative director, Diana Bimakhimova, has fantastic taste in music, a lot of energy and many ideas about how to organise the best party in the city. Every weekend she has a special program for Raketa. Great DJs and creative people are the main cocktail of this bar!

Sunday 30/11

12.00 – Nedelka- Your last brunch in Almaty? There’s no better place. This new cafe has competitive prices, tasty food and a perfect location – that’s the secret of popularity. Panini with salmon and berry lemonade is a top tip!

14.00 – Take a walk to the park. For natural beauty, the park is second only to the mountains. There are many and they are all as green and as beautiful as the next. One of the most popular is the 28 Panfilov park. The name is in honour of 28 soldiers who lost their lives fighting the Nazis and died defending Moscow near a small village. You’ll find a giant memorial monument and eternal flame in their honour. Also in the park you can find amazing architectural work including a wooden cathedral designed by Zenkov. There is story that after the last big earthquake only this building was untouched. Every Almatinian has once been to the park to feed the pigeons – so don’t forget bread!



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