August 31, 2012

Andaz Liverpool Street - The East End Design Hub

Lifestyle Hotel Andaz Liverpool Street champions digital media and food design with sustainable values for London Design Festival 2012; hosting a satellite installation of Keiichi Matsuda’s ‘Veuve Clicquot Prism’ and a ‘Scrap Lab’ project by Food Designer Linda Monique.

‘Prism Cabinet’ by Studio Swine and Keiichi Matsuda for Veuve Clicquot and Andaz Liverpool Street is a holographic representation and portal connection to the hotly ticketed Veuve Clicquot Prism installation at the V&A; city data streamed live and interpreted visually. With limited V&A tickets available, ‘Prism Cabinet’ provides the public with the opportunity to see one of the most anticipated installations for London Design Festival 2012.

Collaborating with Andaz Liverpool Street to showcase sustainability in large operational practices, Food Designer Linda Monique presents ‘Scrap Lab’ which will include a dinner series, installation ‘Eggcentric’ and a new style gift range made from by-products of everyday hotel life.
Monique will create the ‘Eggcentric’ installation, an artistic living composition of 1444 Andaz breakfast eggshells, representing one percent of the amount of eggs consumed at the Hotel each year. The eggshells will be filled with hotel coffee bean compost & sprouting herbs, featured on Ebony&Co wood and transformed into a scrambled breakfast foodscape.
A series of experiential, hands on ‘Scrap Lab’ dinners will be held on Wednesday 19th and Thursday 20th September with Monique collaborating with Andaz chefs to develop a sustainable feast trailing throughout the hotel. The four course menu paired with wine will be served at different spaces around the Hotel including a behind-the-scenes look at the kitchens and the Hotel’s infamous Masonic Temple. 

August 30, 2012

Home House private member's club

London's most exclusive private member's club on Portman Square, W1, will open House 19 this September 2012, marking the re-launch of the Club's acclaimed restaurant and bar, along with the appointment of new head chef Jeremy Brown and the launch of exciting new dining and snack menus.

House 19 links seamlessly with the rest of the renowned Club - entertaining spaces of House 20 and vibrant bars and rooms of House 21. The new design for House 19 by Martin Kemp will underline the celebrated Home House ethos of excellence and eccentricity.

House 19's restaurant is headed by acclaimed Executive Chef Jeremy Brown, who has previously worked in the prestigious Ritz Hotel, as well as renowned Michelin Star restaurants and hotels including within Marco Pierre White Group. The eagerly anticipated restaurant menu has been created by Jeremy Brown to offer members and their guests light, delicately flavoured dishes alongside rich and sumptuous ones and is crafted to offer diners a perfect culinary destination for any occasion. Traditional meats, such as breast of lamb, ham carved from the bone, pork belly and mutton, as well as seasonal dishes such as roasted game are presented with finesse and accompanied by fresh and enticing side dishes.

Number 19 Portman Square will continue to reference the enviable heritage of Home House and stay attuned to the modern tastes of the Club’s discerning members and guests. It will provide a unique space to dine, drink and socialise in opulent and relaxed surroundings.  Day or night; who knows what lies in store for visitors to this most unique and welcoming of environments.

The London Cigar Guide

London has always been synonymous with the finest cigars and in recent years there has been a growing demand for comfortable places for cigar smokers to relax and enjoy cigar with friends and colleagues. 

Since there is more cigar heritage and expertise in a few square miles in London than anywhere else in the world outside Havana, a City Cigar Guide App will be much appreciated by all the cigar lovers. The app will not only show Cigar Stores and smoking terraces/lounges, but will also include an audio guide, restaurants/pubs and other historic sites in London. It will be updated frequently and supported on Facebook and Twitter with up to date information on events to help visitors plan their trip to London. 
The City Cigar Guide App will be released by the Cities in Sound.

August 29, 2012

Ampersand Hotel launch

Drawing Rooms

We were lucky enough to attend the launch of The Ampersand Hotel last night and were amazed by the ambiance and the design of the hotel. Set in the heart of South Kensington (just a couple of steps from the tube station), it is on the doorstep of Hyde Park and Knightsbridge, with easy access to everything London has to offer.
The Ampersand's guest areas and bedrooms are all inspired by the surrounding world, which is represented with 5 themes: botany, music, geometry, ornithology and astronomy. From 20 foot staircase installation accented with goose feather wings to the bespoke upholstery featuring flowers and ferns. 
Superior Room inspired by music

Deluxe Suite inspired by botany

The overall design of the hotel is just stunning - we especially loved the Drawing Rooms and Apero. 
The Drawing Rooms boasts a beautiful patisserie lounge in which both hotel guests and local residents can relax in over-sized armchairs and enjoy striking interior which is inspired by the local cultural institutions of South Kensington. The colour scheme is grey with red and turquoise accents which comes across as very relaxing and classy. On the other hand, there is the Apero bar/restaurant, which revives the Italian tradition of the aperitivo hour, encourages sharing food and its setting reminds of a wine cellar in beautiful brown colours with blue accents. 


Overall, the Ampersand hotel is astonishingly beautiful and cosy at the same time. Its design and colours make it the perfect relaxation oasis in the heart of busy central London and we truly enjoyed our evening in the Ampersand and will return soon.

August 28, 2012

Grand Prix in Abu Dhabi

The Formula 1 Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi Grand Prix is taking place from the 2nd to the 4th November 2012 with berths in Yas Marina filling up quickly. 
The marina is offering members and day visitors alike the ultimate yachting and racing experience with very competitive berth fees. The Formula 1 berths entitle members and their crew to complimentary Yas Marina guest and crew passes, access to the nightly post-race concerts, car parking and transport including water taxis, club cars and shuttle buses. Yas Marina has a selection of excellent track view berths available and large screens located wihing the marina will broadcast the race live to ensure you don't miss the action. 

Beauty inspired afternoon tea in Hong Kong

The Hong Kong's luxury hotel The Upper House is hosting an exclusive afternoon tea at Cafe Gray Deluxe to celebrate the beauty brand Cle de Peau Beaute's 30th Anniversary. 

The afternoon tea is inspired by the brand's new limited edition of its signature nighttime cream - La Creme. Luxuriously packaged in a precious diamond-inspired case, the 3 colours - achieving blue, perfect yellow and enchanting pink – “express a promising radiance of joy that brings your whole face to life.”

limited edition La Creme

The afternoon tea is specially designed for the occasion including Rose and Strawberry Swiss roll, Elderflower Blueberry Macaroon, Lemon Quark Cheese Cake, Poached Shrimp Cucumber and Mango Roll, Blood Orange Finger Print Cookies. For wine lovers, the tea set is paired with a glass of Bonnaire Brut Rosé Champagne.

Guest will receive a premium gift voucher to redeem for Clé de Peau Beauté’s signature products including La Crème 3-night trial sample, Balancing Lotion 12ml and a 2-shade Extra Rich Lipstick trial kit in Autumn Winter shades value at HK$300. Guest will be also invited to visit Clé de Peau Beauté’s counter at Harvey Nichols in Pacific Place for a 30 minutes Autumn Winter Makeup Service, or an option to enjoy a La crème Luxurious Hand Massage Service.

Café Gray Deluxe Afternoon Tea is served from 3.30 – 5.30 pm daily. The restaurant located on the 49/F of The Upper House boasts a panoramic harbour view.

August 24, 2012

There is only one Bond

We have been posting a lot about James Bond, because this year it is the 50th anniversary of James Bond film franchise, which began in 1962 with the release of Dr.No, starring Sean Connery as 007. To celebrate this, Friday the 5th of October will mark the International Bond Day. 
Also to honour the 007, The Random House Group has announced the launch of new editions of the entire series of James Bond books, which will be available in paperback on September the 6th. The books will feature exclusive new introductions in the print editions and all 14 new editions have new cover artwork. Truly an exciting way to celebrate the brilliant work of Ian Fleming.

August 23, 2012

Luxury Travel Predictions

Select Collection was the first and remains the most successful luxury operator in Scandinavia. The couture brand is now established in London with a designer chic boutique in South Audley Street, Mayfair. 
We found the luxury travel trends, predicted by the CEO, owner and founder Leija Graf, very intriguing and decided to sum them up for you.

1. Holiday for your body
One of the hottest trends at the moment is investing in your body by going to spa resorts. 

2. Asian elegance in Europe
Hotel chains such as Mandarin Oriental and Shangri-La are becoming very popular in European metropoles such as Paris, London and Barcelona. Mostly its due to their attention to details, graceful lines and tasteful interior design, that they are becoming the next big thing in Europe.

3. One hotel one island
The peace and quiet of hotels situated on islands is what is driving this particular trend. Travelers enjoy the space and privacy of the islands and mostly the vas number of activities this enables them to do.

4. Return of the classics
Old fashioned lush and colourful luxury are becoming popular again, with hotels redecorating their interiors in Renaissance, Antique or Oriental styles. 

5. A suite not a seat
First class flyers are becoming more and more demanding. Any airline that does not offer a fully horizontal bed in Business class will fall behind. Top actors and leaders in this field are currently Ethiad Airways, Singapore Airlines, Emirates and BA. 

August 22, 2012

Learn authentic espionage techniques

Today, wealthy individuals can learn the skills of James Bond and become masters of espionage. Secret  Me is an invitation-only programme, created by former Special Forces agents and those who understand luxury. It consists of 3 phases operating globally with individuals needing to complete each one successfully before being offered the chance to progress to the next stage. 

Phase 1 aka The Camp: clients are flown by private jet or helicopter to a private stately home somewhere in the UK and over the next three days elite instructors work them through the skills needed to progress to phase two.

Phase 2 aka Mission Training: transports clients to an exotic overseas location where, over a five-day period, the skills they have learnt are developed to a higher level and tested through initial scenarios.

Phase 3 or The Mission: taking place a few months after Phase 2. Participants are likely to be whisked to a secret location, board a luxury vessel and during an intriguing week-long "spy scenario", they put their learnt skills to work.

Skills acquired from ex-Special Forces or Agencies instructors: competency to use combat pistols, on-foot and mobile surveillance, art of disguise, psychology behind kidnap and escapology, cyber skills, threat recognition and elimination. On top of these there are soft skills taught by leaders in their fields such as seduction and persuasion, art of drinks and poisons, poker and hustling, and style and appearance. 

Secret Me is a unique opportunity for you too, to become James Bond.

August 21, 2012

Vertu presents Signature Zirconium

Signature Zirconium

Vertu presents their new luxury phone Signature Zirconium, the latest edition to the Signature Collection. Vertu Signature Zirconium is one of the most highly crafted phones ever made - highly resistant to corrosion made from an extremely high performance material similar to Titanium, but harder and even more durable. What is more, Vertu introduced a new pillow ceramic, Silicon Nitride, known for its excellent resistance to shock and wear. Matt finish anthracite rubberised alligator skin beautifully encases the Signature Zirconium handset to enhance the overall look of the model. Zirconium can be found on many matt products from cars to sunglasses and Vertu has fully embraced this trend.

The ‘sea of sapphire’ matt anthracite coloured finish that makes up the screen of Signature takes more than two weeks to create in a 2000°C furnace. It is almost impossible to scratch and is so hard it can only be cut or scratched with a diamond.

Signature Zirconium back side
The superbly engineered battery cover release is operated by a D-ring. Extremely secure, yet easily released with your fingertips.  The ruby bearings slide on pure sapphire crystal surfaces that are aligned so that no part of the metal key touches the sapphire face of the phone. The result is no friction, no wear, and the world’s most satisfying click – a Signature trademark.

Hand-built in England, it is the first phone to be assembled by a single craftsman. This is a must have for any Vertu fan or simply for the lovers of true luxury.

Chivas launches 'Made for Gentlemen'

Chivas launched a 12 year old Chivas Regal called 'Made for Gentlemen' by Tim Little, British designer of iconic British Luxury shoes under the label Grenson. Tim Little designed a collectible tin features a slick deconstruvtion of the classic wardrobe staple - the hand crafted brogue. 

Tim Little explains, "Men today appreciate luxury that stands the test of time. For me, this
collaboration is about bringing together rich heritage and stories, experts in craftsmanship who make products special and memorable for men. I love the fact that the tin really stands out and the deconstructed elements of the iconic brogue, really enjoying a style revival at the moment, are instantly recognisable."

So if you are a true modern gentleman, this is perfect for you.

Polo like a Pro at Desert Palm

The ultra-chic boutique property Desert Palm resort in Dubai is now offering budding polo players and equestrians the chance to learn the game of polo on some of the finest pitches in the world.
Their polo lessons cater to all levels and no previous riding experience is necessary, which is the perfect opportunity to try the sport played by Royalty. For the more experienced riders, there is a chance to ride in a dully competitive shukka, a seven and a half minute period of play with other players. For those who would just want to try horse riding, Desert Palm offers all equestrian facilities - from dressage to hacks around the surrounding area. 

Guests can also enjoy world famous polo events at Desert Palm such as The Royal Salute UAE Nations Cup and the Cartier International Dubai Polo Challenge. On top of it all, Desert Palm also offers new Polo Suites set just metres from the polo fields. Other facilities of this stylish Arabic property are also LIME spa, a stunning infinity pool and award winning restaurants.

August 20, 2012

Unique New York experiences

If you are traveling to New York, Chatwal luxury collection hotel has something special in store for you. Their concierge team offers 5 unique packages to their clients, to see something beyond Times Square. These experiences range from a private carriage ride and a gourmet picnic in Central Park to jazz club hopping in a private car or visiting a local winemaker and a chocolatier in Brooklyn.

Chopard and new film Diana

Naomi Watts stars as Princess Diana

Chopard already has a rich history in the world of cinema and its icons of the silver screen. The Swiss luxury jeweller has played a leading role within the film industry as both official Partner to the Cannes Film Festival and creator of the Palme d'Or and Tropee Chopard. Chopard has also been the jeweller of many stars for their red carpet outings. 

Chopard's new project is the upcoming film "Diana", where Chopard is proud to be the exclusive jeweller and watch partner for the film and also to dress Naomi Watt"s character: Diana, Princess of Wales. 

New Rolls-Royce Phantom Aviation Coupe

Rolls-Royce introduced 35 new Coupe Aviation Collection models, which feature a suite of exclusive design concepts, color combinations and new materials. The inside of the car is done in wood and metal, which reminds us of a cockpit theme. Upper fascia is in metal, while the lower one in veneered in mahogany. The leather-lined glove compartment includes an embossed Charles Rolls quote: "The power of flight is as a fresh gift from the Creator, the greatest treasure yet given to man."

To round up the aviation theme, collection cars commemorate the S6B aircraft with transmission tunnel in anodized aluminium with exposed torx fixings and swage lines that mimic the oil cooling veins on the S6B fuselage side - same highlights are mimicked on collection car armrests.
All in all, another beautiful creation from the uber luxurious Rolls-Royce.