The strip after dark is packed with people enjoying the warm summer nights and, if you are looking for a good time, the clubs and restaurants have everything you could ever want.
Last night Luba and I first went to the legendary "The Bird Nest," which is about twenty minutes drive from the town and located in a small castle standing on the edge of the cliffs. The décor is mediaeval, but the gourmet menu is modern, Italian inspired and could compete with any top restaurant in Rome or Paris.
After, we went to the night club Matrix, at the Hotel Oreanda, the only 4 start hotel in Yalta and with a parking lot that makes you imagine you're outside the casino in Monte Carlo. For the best Ukrainian food in Yalta, go to the restaurant Hutorok, where you get gypsy songs with your food. Excellent place. For sushi lovers, there's Nobu, which is also part of Hotel Oreanda. In Yalta there are only pebble beaches, but for a photographer this is perfect: no sand in my gear :-)
The beach life is a story all on its own. The men are hunters, the women arrogant gazelles: the game is extremely entertaining and I could spend hours just watching. The men circle their young victims before going in for the kill, usually loaded with gold chains, wearing tiny tight Adidas bathing trunks, mirror sunglasses and, best of all: a fat cigar in their hand. It is usually not lit, but who cares when it looks cool. I could almost hear David Attenborough in the background explaining how the male of the species approaches their female partners and about the necessary body language to succeed and survive; strangely enough these overly tanned and often over the hill guys usually score. Do not ask me how :-)
OK, back to business. You will love today's model. Her name is Iris, a 23 year old redhead from the Crimea with a tall skinny body, glowing light skin and the classic beauty that could decorate any magazine cover and be found strolling on any catwalk. She chose to work as a stewardess for Ukrainian airlines in Simferopol, but luckily I managed to get hold of her and now her beauty will be spread with the wind. If you ever come to Yalta to enjoy some of the attractions described above, Iris might just be the one serving you on your flight to the Crimea.