December 28, 2012

Grace Jones at Baroque London

Grace Jones in her element at Baroque

On Thursday 20th December, musical legend Grace Jones played a short and intimate set for friends and members at London's Baroque club. Grace Jones' intimate performance at Baroque attracted an international crowd including; Eve, Philip Treacy, The Noisettes and  Paloma Faith. Guests drank Belvedere Vodka and XB.

Taking the stage fashionably late Grace Jones lived up to her diva reputation giving an undeniable show stopping performance to the guests of Baroque. During her performance she also regaled everyone with her fond memories of the Playboy Mansion.

Grace wore a black velour corset and  sported a number of outrageous  Philip Treacy hats throughout her performance, wowing the crowd! Eve arrived with beau Max Copper wearing a black satin dress with a sequin jacket. The couple looked very happy as they sipped Belvedere Vodka cocktails and watched Grace wow the crowd.

Eve
Baroque is becoming one of London’s leading live performance spaces. Ending 2012 with a bang, Baroque hopes to continue to attract more high calibre acts through their doors in the New Year. 

December 27, 2012

New Year's Eve Cocktails

Ketel Crumble
We hope you have celebrated Christmas well and are hopefully planning your New Year's Eve celebrations. We thought some cocktail recipes could be very helpful this time of year, so we asked our friend Deano Moncrieffe (Ketel One Brand Ambassador) to share some of his fabulous creations with our readers.


Ketel Crumble

Ingredients:
37.5ml Ketel One Vodka
20ml Freshly Squeezed Lemon Juice
25ml Sugar Syrup
75ml Pressed Apple Juice
Dash of Vanilla Extract
Pinch of ground Cinnamon
Method: Shake all ingredients in a cocktail shaker filled with ice and strain into a goblet filled with cubed ice.
Garnish: apple slice and a sprinkle of ground cinnamon
Units: 1.5
Espresso Martini

Espresso Martini

Ingredients:
50ml Ketel One
37.5ml hot espresso coffee
12.5ml sugar syrup
7ml Grind coffee liqueur (or Kahlua coffee liqueur)
Garnish: with 3 coffee beans
Method: Shake all ingredients with ice and fine strain into chilled glass.
Units: 2.2
Glass: martini

Chocolate Chilli Mule

Chocolate Chilli Mule

Ingredients:
37.5ml Ketel One Vodka
10ml white chocolate liqueur or crème de cacao (white)
Ginger ale
Quarter of a very small red chilli (deseeded and chopped in small pieces)
Lime wedge
Method: Build in the order above into a high ball glass. After you have topped up with ginger ale squeeze a lime wedge and drop into glass, then sprinkle the small pieces of red chilli on the top. Gently stir and serve.
Glass: high ball
Units 1.8



December 24, 2012

Merry Christmas to all!

We want to wish all of our readers and supporters a very Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays. Give a little more love this Christmas and enjoy our favourite Christmas Advert from John Lewis!

December 20, 2012

Hartnett Holder & Co. at Limewood Hotel



“Fine dining and big plates are banned” declareth Robin Hutson when briefing Martin Brudnizki on the new dining space at Lime Wood.  Here in the New Forest, formality and stiffness are out, relaxed and informal are in, something for which Lime Wood is already widely recognised.  So who better than Martin to redesign the new dining space, Hartnett Holder & Co, which opens on Monday 11th February, 2013. 

Luke Holder, Lime Wood’s head chef, with Angela Hartnett and their team, will be creating ‘chefs’ home-cooked food, not chefs’ food cooked for restaurants.’ Hartnett Holder & Co is where guests will come to relax and unwind.  Martin’s design compliments the chefs’ ethos by introducing a range of patterned textured fabrics, including rough linens, mohair velvets and aged leathers.  Chairs and sofas will sit at a lower height allowing guests to sink back and enjoytheir laid back surroundings.

The restaurant will have a central bar, which will bring some of the drama out of the kitchen, so that guests can absorb the preparation theatre going on before their eyes.  Meats will hang from a wine gantry, while a meat slicer and coffee machine sit in pride of place on the bar, a gentle reminder of Hartnett and Holder’s Italian influences.

December 19, 2012

Chartwell Magazine meets Andrew Strauss

Last week Victoria Sheppard, editor of Chartwell Magazine, had the pleasure of meeting former England cricket team captain Andrew Strauss at Lord's Cricket Ground. Andrew discussed his retirement and recent luxury property investment in St. Lucia ( http://www.freedombaystlucia.com).
For the full interview please email us to reserve your complimentary copy Chartwell Magazine. victoria@chartwellmagazine.com  

For international luxury property please contact Michael Christian at Chartwell Estates 0207 409 0533.

December 18, 2012

Three-year reign at The Dorchester

Bruno Do Nascimento, Facundo Gallegos and Stefano Cossio
For three years running, the team of skilled and experienced bartenders at The Bar at The Dorchester have secured the winning title at the annual National Championship Cocktail Competition, supplying the nation's champion bartender - and subsequently the UK representative - at the Bartenders Guild Global Cocktail Competition, which follows shortly after.

Beginning with Stefano Cossio who went on to represent the UK in Singapore in 2010, to Bruno Do Nascimento who competed in Poland in 2011, and Facundo Gallegos, who has only recently returned from his trip to Beijing, where he represented the UK this October. 

All three have trained under Giuliano Morndin, the incredibly well-respected bar manager at The Dorchester. Such is the respect and camaradie of the team that the combined years they have all worked together exceeds 100 years.

December 17, 2012

DSTRKT's 1st Birthday with 50 Cent



US rapper 50 Cent celebrated DSTRKT nightclub's 1st birthday, sponsored by CIROC Ultra Premium Vodka, with an exclusive appearance on Saturday night. Mobbed by hundreds of fans, 50 had time to mention that he was fully focused on a movie career at the moment, whilst also spending a lot of time promoting boxing - which is a huge passion of his. Celebrating the night with a close group of friends, 50 looked relaxed, sipping Ciroc Ultra Premium Vodka cocktails, whilst club goers struggled to get a picture of the US superstar.

December 13, 2012

Stone House - Luxury Villa in Portugal

click on the image to enlarge
Beautiful views of the coast of Portugal and stone features are the highlights of this wonderful property on sale. For more information of to request a brochure contact Chartwell Estates at: michael@chartwellestates.co.uk or call +44 (0)20 7409 0533.

December 12, 2012

Lime Wood Wins the Employer of the Year


At the House of Commons on Thursday 6th December Lime Wood Hotel was awarded Employer of the Year at the Hospitality Guild Apprenticeship Awards and Head Chef Luke Holder shortlisted as Mentor of the Year.  The Awards were opened by Minister for Skills, Matthew Hancock, who said, “since the Guild’s foundation they have been a passionate advocate for apprenticeships, bringing the industry together.” 

Luke Holder and his team have nurtured apprentices throughout 2012.  They arrive with a blank piece of paper after which the team then shows them what they want and how they want it, guiding and nurturing these fledgling chefs every step of the way.  Dan Humphries, an apprentice who hadn’t even touched a fish before arriving in Lime Wood’s kitchens, says, “Luke Holder is full of knowledge and really shows those on the scheme the very best way to do something.” 

Throughout the scheme apprentices get a real awareness of what it takes to be a good chef.  Lime Wood will be welcoming Angela Hartnett in February 2013 when the hotel’s new restaurant, Hartnett Holder & Co, will open.  

December 11, 2012

Johnnie Walker House Beijing


December 7th 2012, Beijing, China JOHNNIE WALKER, the world’s number one Blended Scotch Whisky is proud to announce the grand opening of ‘Johnnie Walker House Beijing’, the world’s largest embassy for luxury Scotch Whisky outside of Scotland.
Following the success of the first Johnnie Walker House in Shanghai last year and continuing the brand’s mantra of ‘Keep Walking’, the Johnnie Walker House Beijing is located at the prestigious Ch’ien Men and creates a highly contemporary space, rich in authentic whisky story-telling for the discerning consumer along with the opportunity to participate in the art of blending.
As the global Scotch whisky industry leader with nearly two centuries of whisky craftsmanship, Johnnie Walker House Beijing provides an unprecedented exclusive luxury whisky experience for consumers.




Visitors are immediately immersed in the JOHNNIE WALKER culture and can select and buy rare whisky as well as participate in the personalised blending sessions. By invitation only VIP patrons are given the opportunity to meet personally with John Walker and Son’s master blender, the soul of JOHNNIE WALKER whisky, to create bespoke blends according to their individual flavour preferences. 
For true exclusivity, 200 by-invitation memberships will be available for members to access exclusive lifestyle experiences as well as private sections of the House such as the Odyssey Lounge and Striding Man Bar. 

Excellence in blending is considered an art form amongst whisky connoisseurs. At Johnnie Walker House Beijing blending goes beyond the glass. The Distillery Bar, open to the public, nearly 10,000 copper pipes have been used to simulate a working distillery.  In selective areas of the House, guests are encouraged to create their own whiskey-inspired art, with the chance of being displayed as part of temporary exhibition.

December 10, 2012

Lake House - Luxury Villa in Portugal

click on the image to enlarge
This stunning property in Portugal is now on the market. For more information or to request a brochure, contact Chartwell Estates: michael@chartwellestates.co.uk or call +44 (0)20 7409 0533.

December 7, 2012

Academy Awards Menu by Wolfgang Puck



Located in Dorchester Collection’s latest London property, celebrated chef Wolfgang Puck’s CUT at 45 Park Lane will be offering diners the chance to celebrate the 85th Academy Awards in true Hollywood style. A special menu will be created by Puck, who has famously cooked for screen icons after the Academy Awards for the previous 18 years. 

The Awards Season menu will be available for private parties in both the Penthouse Suite,  Media Room and restaurant, CUT at 45 Park Lane, on Friday 22, Saturday 23 and Sunday 24 February 2013.  Menu price and dishes will be revealed early in 2013 – customers can expect previous award season tributes such as Smoked Salmon on Oscar® Flatbread with Caviar and Crème Fraiche, and new dishes from the 2013 menu, the 19th year Puck cooks for the stars.   

Alt-J and Nick Grimshaw at Baroque

Alt-J

On Thursday 6th December, super-exclusive Mayfair venue Baroque played host to yet another award winning music act; this time in the shape of British super group Alt-J. Supported by Radio 1 DJ Nick Grimshaw, who span the decks on the night. A host of other big names descended on Old Park Lane, including Natt Weller, an appearance from John Malkovich, über-cool band The Hurts and British model Suki Waterhouse who sported a red bow in her hair and looked enamoured with a mystery fella throughout the evening.
Gerry Calabrese and Nick Grimshaw
Having only been open since early October, Baroque has already welcomed top musical talent from across the globe through its doors, including The Kills, James Blake, Mark Ronson, Delilah and Marina and The Diamonds. Last night Alt-J followed in their footsteps and did not disappoint, reeling off a number of their popular hits, from award winning album 'An Awesome Wave'. The crowd cheered with delight as Tesselate, Fitzpleasure and Matilda were played. As one of their first performances since recently winning the Mercury Prize, the band said how excited they were to play at the venue.

L'Atelier de Courvoisier and the £95,000 bottle

by Sophie Mutevelian
Courvoisier is delighted to announce the launch of L'Atelier de Courvoisier - an explorative insight into its renowned aging cellar in Cognac. L'Atelier will celebrate the alchemy of this prestigious cognac: the meticulous craftsmanship of their master blender Patrice Pinet in bringing together regional grapes, copper pot stills, new oak barrels and intricate techniques to create this most precious liquid. This one-of-a-kind experience will take place in the exclusive Tasting Room in the Wine Shop on the lower ground floor of Harrods, London from Wednesday 5 to Sunday 9 December.
our tasting experience began...
Each day between 12 and 4 p.m., brand ambassador Rebecca Asseline will be conducting tastings of Courvoisier's celebrated XO directly from the barrel and explaining the magic behind the brand. On Saturday 8 December, L'Atelier will play host to a one-off special evening, where guests will embark upon an immersive and educational journey through Courvoisier's rich heritage and alchemy, which we were lucky enough to try out. Starting with a bespoke cognac cocktail designed by Nathan Merriman (from The Ivy), followed by a tasting of Courvoisier XO and a rich food pairing. The tasting and educational experience ends with a chance to taste the limited edition Courvoisier Succession J.S., which was presented in a beautifully handcrafted wooden replica of Napoleon's War Chest and was only produced in 2,500 bottles. 

To finish our tasting experience with a bang, Rebecca Asseline unveiled the world's oldest bottle of Courvoisier cognac, bottled in 1789 (the year of French Revolution) and is exclusively on sale at Harrods for £95,000. Previously it was sold to Bay van der Bunt, who bought it from Sotheby's, and has kept it in his cellar up until now.

December 6, 2012

Chivas and 'Real Friends'


On the evening of the 29th of November, Chivas Whisky held an evening of ‘Real Friends’ at the Bremont Boutique in South Audley Street. With Chivas cocktails flowing Neil Laughton and Jon Beswick gave an inspiring talk on their expedition to the South Pole and the bond forged on this trip.

Throughout the evening guests were treated to delicious canapés courtesy of Adam Byatt’s Trinity Restaurant team, who kept everyone fed and watered (whiskied) with a choice of cocktails; the Little Green Apple, Chivas Peach and Mint Green Tea, and Chivas Ginger and Pineapple.

The icy temperatures outside were nothing a Chivas couldn’t fix but also enhanced the ordeal that Neil and Jon had been through on their journey to the pole. Despite battling the Arctic temperatures and weather conditions that could have proved fatal, they succeeded in playing the first ever game of cricket at the South Pole, United Kingdom vs. ROW (the UK one by two wickets!)

After an evening filled with laughter, whisky and tales of friendship guests left feeling motivated and in awe of the ambitious feats that Neil and Jon accomplish through their drive, determination and friendship.

Jumeirah Living Christmas Tree

Mark Humphrey with his girlfriend, Astrid Gray (GM of Grosvenor House Apartments) and Camilla Kerslake

To celebrate its first Christmas, new luxury hotel concept Grosvenor House Apartments gave a unique take on turning on the lights; ‘Christmas at Home’.

Grosvenor House Apartments by Jumeirah Living also unveiled what is undoubtedly London’s most innovative Christmas tree – Ice-circles, a sculpture created by leading artist designer Mark Humphrey exclusively for the luxury accommodation on Park Lane, London. The 3m tall work of art gave guests a modern and contemporary twist on a quintessential British Christmas; Ice-circles is fashioned from a series of perfectly-formed perspex circles which run from base to apex. A beautiful green light source emanates from the centre of the ‘tree’ giving a sense of traditional green foliage.

Crossover singer Camilla Kerslake, the first signing to Gary Barlow’s new record label, showed she’s got the X-Mas Factor with a special seasonal performance for residents and esteemed guests. 

Festive entertainment was also provided by The New London Children’s Choir and the Grosvenor Chapel, to usher Christmas in to the grand seven-storey vaulted Atrium that lies at the heart of the ‘hotel residence’. 

December 5, 2012

Women's Day with the Dorchester Collection



Behind every great wine list is an even greater woman. At least that is the case for three of Dorchester Collection’s properties: 45 Park Lane, Le Meurice, and Hotel Principe di Savoia, whose head sommeliers are Vanessa Cinti, Estelle Touzet and Alessandra Veronesi respectively. Not only do these leading ladies provide expert wine advice but their charm and passion for all things oenological, bring an added dimension to every dining experience at their hotels.

To celebrate women behind the grape, Dorchester Collection is delighted to announce that, for International Women’s Day 2013, these three sommeliers will join together to embark on a wine road trip where they will host three successive wine events in London, Paris and Milan commencing the celebrations on a fitting  #WineWednesday:
-        Wednesday, 6 March, London
-        Thursday, 7 March, Paris
-        Friday, 8 March, Milan (International Womens Day)


These events will toast female achievements in wine, and no doubt inspire lively discussions on female wine makers, next generation wine families, the female palate and simply being a woman in the sommelier world. The sommeliers will compare Old World and New World wines with two wine selections from American, French and Italian wines.


Female guests staying at the hotels during this time in respective cities will also receive a 10% discount on selected spa treatments and complimentary glass of champagne at lunch. An event not to be missed and to be penciled in in every 2013 planner. 

Mahiki Coconut Christmas Party

Nick Grismshaw turned on the Mahiki Christmas Lights

On Tuesday 4th December, celeb favourite Mahiki hosted its annual Christmas Party, with the added celebration of Mahiki Coconut Rum (now available at Tesco and Sainsburys) There was guest attendance from some well known faces, and Mahiki regulars Mollie King, Alexandra Burke, Oliver Cheshire, Isaac Ferry and Diana Vickers also joined in the party.

Sheltering from the cold in Mayfair's very own tiki paradise, guests flocked to Mahiki to celebrate the annual Christmas Party. With the Mahiki Coconut Rum in full flow, celebrating its launch in stores nationwide, guests were welcomed by some friendly tiki warriors at the door, as they descended into the tropical warmth and out of the bitter London wind. With everyone suitably comfy, and sipping on drinks out of pineapples and coconuts, Nick Grimshaw had the honour of turning on the Mahiki Christmas lights, to much fanfare and the flash of camera bulbs. With food provided by Tom Parker Bowles, guests were presented with a delectable feast with a festive twist. 

*Oliver Cheshire, without his beau Pixie Lott, had just come from the Zara party which he absolutely loved, however had to forgo a big night as he had an important Christmas dinner to attend the next day!

*Nick Grimshaw, fresh from turning on the Mahiki Christmas lights, exclaimed how excited he was for Christmas, and how he has become "strangely used" to waking up at 4am each morning for his radio breakfast show, so a late night doesn’t phase him at all.

December 4, 2012

$1 Million-Dollar ArtBike


Created by Jack Armstrong in collaboration with Fisher, this CosmicStar Cruiser ARTBike is the world's most expensive ARTBike. It took 6 months to transform the SOLE bike into this stunning and functional piece of art. 

Bugatti Veyron Grand Sport Venet


This Bugatti Veyron Grand Sport is uniquely painted by French artist Bernar Venet, who is based in New York. The "fastest artwork ever" will be displayed from December 6 - 9 at Art Basel festival in Miami Beach. What is truly special about the art displayed in this Bugatti Veyron are the mathematical and scientific formulae used by Bugatti engineers in developing the Veyron across its front fascia and over its flanks. Definitely a collectors item.


Blaken Deepsea Rolex by Andre Borchers


Blaken is the official customizer for Rolex watches, and they have created an amazing new piece, by customizing the Deepsea model. With the typical deep black finish, Andre Borchers designed a contrasting comic style dial, which creates a rough yet stylish street-art look.
Only 7 of these watches are available worldwide and each comes in a Blaken Outdoorbox with custom engraving, nato watchstrap, warranty card, as well as a Limited Edition certificate.

December 3, 2012

Five Hundred at the Saxon



The Saxon has turned the heads of foodies across the globe with the recent launch of its brand new and highly exclusive fine dining restaurant; Five Hundred.

The restaurant is undoubtedly Johannesburg’s “it” place to visit and be seen, and with Chef David Higgs’ culinary genius the driving force in the kitchen – visitors to South Africa’s sleepless city are definitely in for a treat when visiting the Saxon. 
Five Hundred, complementing the Saxon’s variety of individually inspired venues privatized for guests’ exclusive use and pleasure, is a stylish and graceful restaurant complete with private entrance and 90 degree window views over the Saxon’s beautifully crafted gardens and the Johannesburg cityscape.

Having introduced a whole new culinary culture to the hotel, Executive Chef David Higgs has injected huge amounts of energy and a 20/20 vision for the hotel’s cuisine and as such has raised its profile to among the best in the world.
   
Diners are guaranteed the finest cuisine, wines and ambience at this exclusive evening restaurant that accommodates a maximum of only 30 guests.  For an extraordinary gastronomic experience, book a Chef’s Table for 8 people which allows for a personalised menu choice, interaction with Chef - and all the trimmings!

Guerlain Spa at The Caledonian



Following a significant programme of investment, the recently re-branded The Caledonian, A Waldorf Astoria Hotel in Edinburgh is pleased to announce the final stage of its upgrade, as the UK’s first Guerlain Spa, will start welcoming guests on the 1st January 2013. 

Beginning with a systematic analysis and precise skin diagnosis, each treatment will be individually tailored using signature Guerlain touches. A journey of tranquillity will begin as guests are encouraged to relax and enjoy a gently soothing, fragrant foot bath designed to envelop the senses; a ritual that will allow even the most time pressed guests to unwind before their choice of treatment.

The treatment menu at the Guerlain spa will reflect luxury, emotion and refinement with a collection of indulgent treatments created using Guerlain products and respecting the origins of the signature massage, dating back to when the brand opened its first ‘Institut de Beauté’ in Paris in 1939. 

Alongside the exquisite treatments offered at the Guerlain Spa, guests wishing to simply relax will have the opportunity to take a dip in the swimming pool or unwind in the spa’s sauna, steam room or jacuzzi. 

The Guerlain Spa at The Caledonian, A Waldorf Astoria Hotel will be a gem in the heart of the city and an intimate sanctuary for guests and locals alike to experience true luxury and absolute pampering.