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Rolls-Royce’s £350,000 new Phantom

Rolls-Royce has revealed its most technically advanced Phantom ever. The flagship model, which costs £350,000, boasts a state-of-the-art design to whisk the world’s wealthiest around in near silence and luxury.

The Phantom flagship limousine was launched at a VIP party in London. It is the eighth in a bespoke line stretching back 92 years. The brand markets the new Phantom as ‘the most silent motor car in the world’ and the quietest Rolls-Royce ever made. It has a powerful 6.75 litre twin-turbo V12 engine, but top speed is electronically restricted to 155mph. Thanks to its sports car acceleration, getting from 0-62mph can be achieved in just 5.3 seconds.

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This spectacular piece of automotive art paves the way for a future all-electric Rolls-Royce as the brand prepares for Government moves to ban the sale of new ‘conventional’ petrol and diesel vehicles from 2040.

Connoisseurs and collectors of fine art will be pleased to know there is plenty of space inside the limousine to display some of their own specially commissioned artworks, set behind a long stretch of protective glass on the dashboard. This essentially doubles the luxury limousine as an art gallery on wheels.

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Another feature worth mentioning is the largest Starlight ‘headliner’ ever seen in a Rolls-Royce, comprising pinpricks of light in the roof. They are surrounded by high gloss and exquisitely tactile’ wood panelling in the door interiors, centre consoles, dashboard and picnic tables. The armrests draw inspiration from the classic J-Class yacht.

A sweep of wood panelling can be found across the back of the front seats and is influenced by the famous Eames Lounge Chair of 1956 which is part of the New York Museum of Modern Art’s permanent display.

Phantom customers have a choice of seats: including the more intimate lounge seat, individual seats with an occasional armrest, or fixed centre console, plus the newly introduced ‘sleeping seat’.

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Flying Car 4.0 from AeroMobil Revealed

Flying cars have long been the stuff of sci fi movies and wild dreams, but for wealthy buyers – they will soon be a fascinating reality. AeroMobil, based in Central Europe, has a team of 40 engineers and designers from eight countries who have made real strides in the sector. The team recently presented their version 4.0 of its vehicle at the International Paris Air Show, at Le Bourget Airport.

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The AeroMobil concept is designed to work in today’s infrastructure and present drivers slash pilots with an alternative to avoid congestions and heavy ground traffic.  On the road, the vehicle can travel up to 100 mph for more than 400 miles. In the air, it can fly nonstop for almost 500 miles and cruising at speeds up to 160 mph. The vehicle can comfortably seat two passengers, and can transform from drive mode into flight mode in less than three minutes, according to a spokesman for the company. One minor inconvenience is that the AeroMobil needs a runway to take off and land, and operators will have to be certified pilots to operate it.

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The exterior is made from carbon composites, to increase strength and minimize weight. When airborne, the vehicle is designed to be stable and easy to manoeuvre, the company says. The cockpit is fashioned from a high-strength monocoque structure for safety, and in an emergency, the pilot can deploy a ballistic parachute. This is done to ensure the entire vehicle can be brought safely to the ground.

The ground-breaking vehicles are scheduled for delivery by 2020, with the company taking pre-orders now. Estimated cost for the cutting-edge model is about $1.4 million to $1.8 million.

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Heesen’s Hybrid Superyacht Home

Project Nova, the 163-foot Heesen hybrid yacht has just completed five days of extensive sea trials in the North Sea. Aptly named Hope, the yacht is on its way to owners in the Mediterranean.

Home is the first Heesen hybrid. It has a strong Omega-designed exterior, which boasts an almost hawk-like, vertical bow that serves as the entry for a long, lean profile. Other features worth mentioning include Home’s hybrid electric-diesel propulsion mated to Heesen’s advanced hull shape.

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Heesen has made a name for itself with its Fast Displacement Hull Form (FDHF), which is designed by Van Oossanen Naval Architects. It was first used on the 213-foot Galactica Star as well as three other steel-hulled Heesens since.

Home is powered by twin 804 hp MTU 12V 2000 M61 engines. Although small for a yacht this size, they are able to produce impressive top end of 16.3 knots during its sea trials. Top speed increased to 18.5 knots when the MTUs were supplemented with the yacht’s two 170 hp DC electric engines.

At a cruising speed of 16 knots the yacht only consumes about 71 gallons per hour. At 12 knots, fuel consumption drops to 26 gph. When it only uses the electric motors Home achieves the respectable speed of 10 knots at 12 gph.

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The yacht is defined by its modern aesthetics, inside and out, which are as impressive as its technological breakthroughs. Its striking exterior was created by Frank Laupman of Omega Architects. Vertical bows and high bulwarks complement the open bow to the floor-to-ceiling windows amidships, and the fixed swim platform at the stern. The interior has a sophisticated linear design in a two-tone palette. Bright colours are combined with abundant natural light for a warm, relaxed feel across the cabin. Home will make its public debut at the Monaco Yacht Show in September.

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Special Edition – The Patek Philippe Reference 5531R World Time Minute Repeater

Swiss master watchmaker Patek Philippe held its ‘The Art Of Watches Grand Exhibition’ in New York. The Maison marked the momentous occasion with the launch of very special, limited edition timepieces. The Patek Philippe Ref. 5531R World Time Minute Repeater New York 2017 Special Edition watch stood out with its unique design and amazing new grand complication that melodiously chimes the time for any location in the world. This one-of-a-kind minute repeater introduces significant changes to Patek Philippe’s traditional watchmaking process.

For the first time in the watchmaking world, Patek Philippe Ref. 5531 World Time Minute Repeater brings the rare combination of minute repeater and world time complications together in a single case. The functional mechanical connection between the repeater and the world time complication allows it to chime the local time anywhere in the world.

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The new model comes in two versions, each in a limited series of just five pieces. Retailing price for the all-new grand complication watch is $561,341.

The biggest difference between a traditional repeater and the reference 5531R is that the new model doesn’t have the hour snail isn’t indexed once per hour by the minute snail; instead it’s driven continuously by the time zone wheel of the world time mechanism. This allows it to accurately reflect local rather than home time.

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Another interesting alteration to the traditional mechanism, is an additional system that ensures that at the end of each hour, the watch will chime the time that the hands show at the end of the strike. The unique design means that instead of hearing five hour strikes, three quarter strikes, and 14 minute strikes as would be the case in a normal repeater, the wearer will instead hear only six hour strikes, which end exactly as the hands reach 6:00.

The watch boasts extra safety features– for example when the strike is activated, the world time mechanism is blocked to prevent any damage that might occur if the owner attempts to adjust the world time mechanism during chiming.

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$75 Million Estate in Lake Tahoe

Lake Tahoe has long been a top destination for billionaires looking for a gated real estate havens in the United States. Now, one lucky buyer can snap the ultimate lakefront property for the staggering sum of $75 million. Marketed as the most expensive estate in Lake Tahoe, the grand property is listed by Chase International, Crystal Pointe.

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It is perched on the cliffs of Lake Tahoe’s north shore and sits on 525 feet of valuable lakefront land. The property covers a total of 5.14 acres (on two parcels). It comprises the main residence, guesthouse, caretaker’s apartment and beach house with 16,232 square feet of living space. There are eight spacious bedrooms, ten full and one-half bathrooms and 13 fireplaces. Stone, wood and plush furnishings create a warm, modern and welcoming ambiance – ideal for a family home.

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The home even includes two dramatic outdoor glass funiculars and two elevators, which reveal sweeping views over the lake. A ten-seat movie theatre, and a 1,687-bottle wine cellar are just two of the amenities that can be used to entertain guests. The entry pavilion sits at the end of the private driveway where one of the glass funiculars is located next to the oversized four car garage.  The current owner of the lavish property is Stuart Yount, CEO of Fortifiber.

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Clearly, a lot of quality craftsmanship and detail have gone into this spectacular custom home to set it apart from other lakefront estates. Construction of this scale, combined with coveted lakefront amenities of a large plot of land are a rare combination in modern estate.

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This Lake Tahoe property is well worth its high price. It sets a new standard amongst the next generation of lakefront estates with its original and innovative design and amenities. It is ideal for 21st century living that blends seamlessly with the magnificent surroundings.

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Limited Edition Summer Bourbons

Al Young is a legendary name in Kentucky bourbon circles. A part of Four Roses since 1967, he has brought back the brand to life. It is now one of the most popular and critically acclaimed bourbons in the world. Young himself is a member of the Kentucky Distillers’ Association Kentucky Bourbon Hall of Fame.

Commemorating Young’s 50th anniversary with Four Roses, he and Master Distiller Brent Elliott released a special bourbon. The Al Young 50th Anniversary Small Batch Bourbon will retail for $150. This is not the first limited edition single barrel and small batch offering from Four Roses in the last decade.  But it is amongst the most anticipated releases of the year for bourbon fans and collectors. The special bourbon comes in a bottle, which replicates the bottle and label design from 1967. Inside is a blend of four different recipes aged 13-23 years. Sweet, slightly tart notes of dried apples and cherries open the taste buds before the oak makes its presence felt midpalate. The finish is long and dry, with soft butterscotch and burnt caramel complementing the woody spice. Light vanilla and toffee notes are added to the fore, but even at cask strength (54.46% alcohol by volume), it’s easy to drink neat.

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Another noteworthy offering comes from Maker’s Mark – one of the best-selling whiskeys in the world.  The Bill Samuels Jr. Private Select (priced at $80) was created by the brand’s legendary chairman emeritus. Samuels’ creation was finished in a barrel composed of a variety of seasonal staves to give the bourbon unique qualities in both taste and texture. While the flavor profile remains similar to Maker’s 46, Samuels’ Private Select boasts slightly more robust notes of vanilla, toffee and pepper, with a finish that lingers just a wee bit longer.

The Bill Samuels Jr. Private Select

A quarter century after its launch, Knob Creek marks its silver anniversary with Knob Creek 25th Anniversary Limited Edition Bourbon (priced at $130). This is a single-barrel bottling that’s the first Knob Creek to be released at cask strength. The high-octane blast is reminiscent of Booker’s Bourbon, with familiar brown sugar and toffee notes of Knob Creek emerge clearly. The finish is long and dry, full of oak, tobacco, and leather.

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New luxurious Belmond Andean Explorer sleeper train

Wealthy travellers are able to experience the Peruvian Andes like never before aboard Belmond’s luxurious sleeper train. The ultimate travel adventure allows you to explore the harsh but lush terrain of Peru in comfort and luxury – usually reserved for 5-star hotels in the world’s top cities. Now, all of these services are taken to one of the world’s highest train routes aboard South America’s first luxury sleeper train.

Belmond Andean Explorer is a luxury train with the capacity of up to 48 passengers. It passes through Peru in peerless style. Travellers can select from one- and two-night itineraries journey between Cusco, Puno and Arequipa and take in natural wonders such as Lake Titicaca and Colca Canyon en-route.

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Time abroad can be spent in an inviting, indulgent ambiance with superb accommodation and a range of amenities. Guests can enjoy refined Andean cuisine throughout the unforgettable journey. Fresh, colourful and seasonal dishes will be made from locally sourced ingredients and served in the two elegant dining carriages. Top chefs from Belmond Hotel Monasterio, Cusco will be in charge of designing the menus.

There are additional observation, lounge and spa cars for much-needed relaxation spots. Modern comfort and traditional flourishes are combined to create an ambiance of luxury and elegance. The interior is connected to the location to make this a holistic journey of discovery. This journey will begin with the train’s immediate surroundings.

Andean Explorer sleeper train

A luxurious Piano Bar Car sets the musical tone as guests enjoy a selection of exquisite cocktails to the sensational passing scenery as a backdrop.

The Observation Car is the ultimate spot take in the picturesque Andean landscape and breathe in the crisp air from the open deck.

The Llama carriage houses the Boutique with original gifts and handcrafted items from each of the train’s destinations. It’s open from 11am until 7pm daily.

Adjacent to the Boutique is a library with a bespoke selection of literature to immerse guests in the fascinating history, culture and natural wonders of Peru.

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Numarine’s 32XP Explorer Yacht

Numarine has just launched its new 32XP Explorer Yacht with a go-anywhere steel hull. It boasts ample space for owners and guests that extends beyond the standard for other yachts in its 105-foot class. The 32XP yacht offers 3,550 square feet of living/social space, with 515 square feet designated for the saloon alone. The owner’s stateroom comprises 430 square feet, and the four guest staterooms total nearly 1,000. Floor-to-ceiling windows and functional distribution of layout create an abundance of light and space. The 32XP is perfect for crossing long distances with its 3,000-mile range in a spacious, homey environment.

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The hull was designed by Umberto Tagliavini with efficiency in mind, and is capable of a top speed of 14 knots, via twin 2,100 hp Caterpillar engines. It cruises at 12 knots. The superstructure is unusually contemporary for an explorer yacht. It boasts serrated curves in the superstructure areas over the windows and a jaunty hardtop on the top deck. Other striking features include the ship’s bridge, aft deck for storage. The open bow area gives it a more traditional explorer design.

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The flybridge is a typical party platform, with sofas, a dining table for 12, and a full wet bar. The owner’s cabin sits on the deck below and includes a walk-in closet, bathroom, and—a superior feature—exclusive access to the aft deck. There is a second master suite on the main deck, with a large bedroom and separate his-and-her bathrooms and a shared rain-forest shower. A professional galley (with four full-size fridges, freezers, and cooking equipment for long voyages) connects via a pantry to the open-plan saloon. In addition, there are two VIP and two double cabins along with crew quarters for five via a separate entrance.

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In partnership with Silent Line, Numarine was able to reduce noise and vibration on the 32XP. This allowed the Turkish shipyard to surpass RINA’s “Comfort Class” standards in the 50-meter (165-foot) class.

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Stunning 4,000-acre estate with TEN cottages, an organic farm and a stone circle

A spectacular Highland estate with its own stone circle, organic farm and nearly 4,000 acres of land has gone on the market for £10.9 million.

The Bolfracks Estate, near Aberfeldy, Perthshire, has been owned by the same family for almost a century. It is now being sold by third-generation owners Athel and Annie Price.

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The estate consists of a principal Gothic nine-bedroom house, Bolfracks House, which was erected in the 17th century and enlarged in the 19th century, and 10 additional houses and cottages.

The house was built by the Earl of Breadalbane in the traditional Gothic style and exhibits a number of striking architectural features, which include a panelled reception hall. Polished oak floors, open fireplaces with decorative surrounds and a window seat in the drawing room are just a few of the majestic original elements that have been preserved.

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The Croftmoraig stone circle is located within the grounds of the estate. It is one of the most intact groups of standing stones in Scotland, dating back to the third and second millennia. The stones had religious connections and are now a popular tourist attraction.

Bolfracks Estate also has a run-of-river hydro-electricity scheme. The grounds allow for the practice of a wide range of traditional field sports. It also has an organic cattle and lamb farm.

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An ornamental garden is currently accessible to the public between spring and autumn. It was established at Bolfracks in the mid-18th century. Significantly developed by the owner, Annie Price, it is among the most extensive and diverse gardens in Highland Scotland. It includes a striking collection of rhododendrons, azaleas, acers, old fashioned roses and an array of herbaceous perennials.

Highland Perthshire is among the most attractive and sought after parts of the Scotland as it offers ample spaces and a diverse selection of lots.

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This 1956 Aston Martin DBR1 becomes the most expensive British car to be auctioned

Described as ‘the most important Aston Martin ever produced’, the 1956 DBR1 is likely to become the most expensive British car ever when it goes under the hammer at RM Sotheby’s flagship Monterey sale. The auction is scheduled for August 18 and 19 during the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance motoring week in the US.

The 1956 racer, which is chassis number one of just five made, is said to attract bids of over £15 million ($20 million) from wealthy connoisseurs. This is closer to the £17 million ($21.7 million) mark of the previously sold 1955 Jaguar D-Type that sold at the same auction last year and currently holds the record for the priciest motor sale at an auction in Britain.

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The car is described as Aston’s ‘equivalent to the Ferrari 250 GTO and the similarities between the two are undeniable. Both vehicles are built to dominate on the track with the DBR1 making its debut at the iconic 24 Hours of Le Mans race in 1956.

Preserved in pristine condition, the svelte frame of the legendary model hides a 3.0-litre straight-six engine packing around 250bhp. In 1959, that was enough to shame all the competition at the Nurburgring 1,000 KM race.

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This is the first time a DBR1 has ever been made available to the public, so there is already a long line of potential buyers who are eager to own this historical piece. The fact it is chassis number 1 makes this model the most enticing for fans of classic British cars.

RM Sotheby’s describes it as being “immaculately presented down to every last detail, and the most correct of all five examples built, making it the most significant group of Astons to ever come to auction.”

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The legendary model was retired after the Nürburgring victory in 1959 and has since been in the ownership of the Honourable John Dawnay, future Viscount Downe and Aston Martin Owner’s Club president as well as been part of a number of major collections.