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Iconic Jewelry Designs for Every Collector

Exceptional jewelry designs never go out of style, and some get more valuable with age. This is particularly true with those iconic creations that started new trends in the high-end jewelry industry or were owned by nobility and royalty and passed down as family heirlooms from one generation to the next. Some jewelry pieces are not only stylish, and timeless, but also investment-worthy.

The Verdura’s Maltese Cross Cuff came to light in the 1930s, when Duke Fulco di Verdura pioneered a new concept in precious jewelry with his bold and colorful, Byzantine-inspired Maltese cross brooches. The aristocratic designer gave them to the famous fashion editor Diana Vreeland. However, his true success came when he took a pair of slightly mismatched Maltese cross brooches with multicolored gems and placed them on two large, white enamel cuffs. He then gave these cuffs to his friend and muse Coco Chanel, who incorporated them into her signature style. 

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The Maltese Cross Cuffs remain Verdura’s most significant creation and part of Coco Chanel’s signature style. They come in many design variations and are frequently worn by celebrities and today’s style icons, including Sofia Coppola, Naomi Watts, and Sarah Jessica Parker. There are subtler everyday styles as well as glamorous diamond-encrusted models—that are recreated in limited numbers today.

The Maltese cross has come to represent differing degrees of boldness, and for the brand’s 75th anniversary 2 years ago, they went back to the original Byzantine inspiration—the 6th-century mosaic of Empress Theodora—for the motif. Available in several combinations of gold and precious materials – the Chrome tourmaline, amethyst, diamond and gold version sells for $49,500 while the darker Black jade, black and white diamonds, pearl and gold will set you back $56,500. The Maltese Cross Midas Bracelet retails for $52,000 and the Iconic Maltese Cross motif in amethyst, peridot, pearl, diamond and 18k hammered yellow gold, hinged costs $58,500.

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The Rosetti Explorer Yacht

Rosetti Superyachts’ new 279-foot expedition yacht combines luxury-yacht accommodations with a proven offshore-supply-vessel design and the results are spectacular. The Italian shipyard has built more than 100 offshore commercial vessels since 1925, and is well known for its bespoke designs. Working with renowned designer Tommaso Spadolini has produced a range of explorer and bespoke superyachts from 157 to 280 feet. These custom yachts have a distinctive Italian look as well as notable technical advantages that few other shipyards can’t offer. 

The first 279-foot concept is a powerful hybrid expedition/support vessel designed to carry a flotilla of boats and toys, as well as a month’s worth of fuel and supplies, turning it essentially into a home-on-water. Its yacht-caliber accommodations for the owners and guests make maritime adventures as comfortable as can be even in the worst of weather conditions. 

The new Rosetti will have a dedicated helicopter landing area for quicker access and fast getaways. It will be powered by MAN diesel engines fitted with an innovative Azipod propulsion system that was developed by Rolls-Royce. This results in a strong top speed and exceptional fuel performance. All of these specifications have been designed with the growing trend for explorer yachts fueled by adventurers in mind. With wealthy clients pushing the boundaries of exploration, the need for vessels that can live up to their cruising needs has created a new market niche.  From the fjords of Norway or Antarctica, remote waters are now just a sail away.

Rosetti has announced only about a dozen custom yachts to be built over the next five years, focusing on three different styles. Buyers will be able to choose between support vessels, explorer yachts, and traditional superyachts, each with a custom design. They will rely on the same types of propulsion, and general delivery times will be around 12 months.”

Owners will also have the choice of working with their own designers or using the Spadolini designs that are being developed. Prices will be available upon discussion of specifications and design requests for each individual vessel.

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Valkyrie AMR Pro Aston Martin’s Hypercar

The new racer from Aston Martin will be even more powerful and faster than the 1,000 hp road car. Aston Martin Valkyrie promises to achieve 250 mph, courtesy of its creator—Formula One race car designer Adrian Newey. Newey is the chief technology officer for Red Bull Advanced Technologies, and envisioned the Valkyrie as a true road car.

It will be powered by a V-12 that generates at least 1,000 hp. Constructed mostly of carbon fibre, the car’s total weight will be just over 2,200 pounds (1,000 kilograms). This gives it a 1:1 power-to-metric-weight ratio. A stunning aerodynamic design will enable the Valkyrie to generate 4,000 pounds of downforce. With those projected performance specs, it’s hard to imagine how the car will fit within street-legal constraints.

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Currently, Aston Martin Valkyrie AMR Pro, the track-only version that Newey developed comes along with the road-going Valkyrie. The AMR Pro’s 6.5-liter Cosworth V-12 will generate even more horsepower and more torque than the Valkyrie’s engine, although official specs are yet to be confirmed. The company promises a top speed close to 250 mph for the AMR Pro with lap times that rival those of a contemporary Formula One or LMP1 machine.

The more noticeable visual difference between the designs of the two Valkyries are the AMR Pro’s larger front and rear wing elements. They will enable the car to generate even more downforce than the road car does. The absence of a heater and infotainment screens will make the race car even lighter. The AMR Pro will come with instructions and owners will be able to participate in a driver-development program that includes time in a racing simulator and on-track lessons for a realistic experience.

Aston Martin has announced a limited number of only 150 examples of the road car and only 25 of the race car. Prices have not been revealed (although estimates are $2.3 million for the Valkyrie and $2.5 million for the AMR Pro). Deliveries of the road car and race car are expected to begin in 2019 and 2020, respectively.

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A selection of exquisite wines for the holidays

A mere four weeks before the holiday season is the perfect time to invest in some limited-edition, high-quality wines. Wealthy investors understand the unlimited opportunities of fine wine with eager connoisseurs willing to spend as much as $3,000 as an average price tag for a bottle of Pétrus, one of Bordeaux’s greatest reds. And these four suggestions from some of the best wine houses in the world are a safe bet this season:

Thierry Allemand, Cornas, Rhône, France

Thierry Allemand has farmed his rocky, terraced vineyards in Cornas for decades, which has earned him fame as one of the world’s Syrah masters and a loyal following from sommeliers and collectors alike. His upcoming retirement is expected to push his wines toward record prices. Their 2014 Thierry Allemand “Chaillot” Cornas retails for $150.

Maison Pierre Overnoy, Arbois-Pupillin, Jura, France

Pierre Overnoy’s protégé Emmanuel Houillon has continued his legacy with wines that are high in price but also unmatched in quality and taste. The wine house’s signature method for production excludes the use of sulphur dioxide (the almost universally used preservative. Presently, a bottle of their fine Arbois Pupillin Chardonnay can be bought for $160.

Henri Bonneau, Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Rhône, France

Henri Bonneau was one of the great traditionalist winemakers of the southern Rhône, and the bottles that have remained after his death at Châteauneuf-du-Pape’s have skyrocketed in value. They are currently only available through private auctions with prices going as high as $645 for a bottle.

Arnaud Ente, Meursault, Burgundy, France

Arnaud Ente is one of Burgundy’s most respected—and most meticulous—winemakers. Intense and keenly focused, his white Burgundies are the apotheosis of Chardonnay. The signature combination of quality and a limited annual production has already seen prices skyrocket with bottles starting at £568.00.

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Peat-Driven Whisky from Laphroaig

Age and oak have brilliantly enriched the deep nuances of a beloved classic Islay single malt. As Laphroaig is celebrating its 202nd birthday this year, the venerable Islay distillery is re-inventing tradition. The team, led by distillery manager John Campbell, has been experimenting tirelessly with aging its distinctively peaty whisky. In addition to PX sherry hogsheads and virgin American oak, they have turned to triple maturation and quarter-size casks, and managed to produce a range of 11 core whiskies, along with a few limited-edition expressions. And they are a taste to behold.

Now, whiskey will no longer be judged on the sole basis of how long it has spent in the barrel. With the exception of Laphroaig’s flagship 10-year-old bottling and a hard-to-find 25 year old, the new range is entirely NAS (no age statement). This is an indicator that at least some of the blend is younger than the other whiskies included. With more and more NAS single malts being released—many of which still fall under the category of high-quality whiskies. But a significant age is something that is hard to replicate.

The newly released Laphroaig 27 Year Old is priced at $750 per bottle. It was matured in a combination of refill hogsheads, ex-bourbon casks, and refill quarter casks—and bottled at a tame 83.4 proof. The result is a rich, deep, multi-layered flavour that stands out from the vast majority of younger malts. Time tends to soften a peated whisky but the flavour remains unaltered. The smoke and peat are still present, along with a classic undernote and salty-sea-air finish. But it’s achieved a gentler and rounder texture than a typical Laphroaig, with sweet honey and hints of citrus costarring in the production.

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Miami’s New $20,000-Per-Night Penthouse

Lavish Sunny Isles Beach is one of Miami’s most luxurious and sought-after neighborhoods, offering white sandy beaches, world-renowned restaurants, and panoramic views of the Atlantic Ocean. Recently, a frenzy of modern residential towers and opulent hotel accommodations have been redefining its skyline. Ahead of other developments is Acqualina Resort & Spa, known for its sold-out Mansions at Acqualina, its Karl Lagerfeld–designed Estates at Acqualina, and, its brand new 7,725-square-foot hotel Penthouse 46.

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Located on the 46th floor of Acqualina’s 51-story resort tower, the bespoke penthouse is built around its 360-degree ocean and Intercoastal views. It boasts a modern and superbly elegant décor throughout that effortlessly channels the tranquillity of the sea below. The spacious oceanfront terrace is fitted with plush lounge furniture, a saltwater swimming pool, a living wall, a TV, a summer kitchen, and a dining table for a party of eight.

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The spectacular views follow guests inside with floor-to-ceiling windows and a simple color palette of neutrals and dark grays. A strong Miami vibe can be seen in the interior with playful touches in every room. A 10-person wooden dining table rests atop a coral pony-hair rug. The bar is fitted with a striking agate countertop backlit with LED bulbs, and the extravagant entrance sprawls off a private foyer and sparkles with a silver-leaf ceiling.

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The price of Miami’s newest accommodation starts at $20,000 per night and is well worth every cent. The five-bedroom suite includes a poolside cabana guest house for a truly VIP experience. It is one suite that outshines all others in comfort, style and exclusivity.

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Ferrari’s new £3MILLION FXX-K Evo hypercar

Ferrari debuted the extreme FXX-K Evoluzione track-only hypercar – the most expensive model on the market for the whooping £3million. This far exceeds the price tag of Bugatti – the current title holder of the world’s most expensive car.

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Named FXX-K Evo, the new model is based on the £1million road-legal LaFerrari – and is the ultimate Top Trumps model. It is just as powerful as Ferrari’s current Formula One car. Its 6.3-litre V12 engine uses the same petrol-electric Kinetic Energy Recovery System – also known as KERS – that F1 machines have been fitted with in recent years.

The combination of two power sources generates a staggering 1,036bhp. Coupled with the new extreme looks, the FXX-K Evo is a real head-turner. Its sharpened and flared piece of bodywork boasts a win-profile rear spoiler, two side wings and a central fin to produce incredible levels of pin-it-to-the-road grip.

Evo hypercar

In addition to updated aerodynamics, a whopping 640kg of downforce at a speed of 124mph is generated. In its current configuration, the FXX-K Evo is deemed far too extreme to be fitted with number plates, restricting owners to only using it in competition events or driving days at race circuits.
What’s even more, Ferrari hand-picks the owners of the FXX range, and the new model will initially be offered only to existing FXX-K customers who want to upgrade from their current 1,000bhp-hypercar.

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£3million may seem a bit extreme for a car that can’t even be driven off the track, but millionaires and billionaires are already showing interest in upgrading on the non-Evoluzione model – of which around 40 were made – or choose one of the handful of all-new models that will be built to Evo specification. Owners will be able to work in tandem with Ferrari’s design team to customize the interior for a truly unique driving experience.

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Exclusive Look Inside the Azimut Grande 35 Metri

Achille Salvagni has taken the interior design aboard Azimut’s Grande 35 Metri yacht to a new level of sophistication. The result is a yin-yang ambiance, focused on using the yacht’s large volumes to maximize social spaces. In addition to the largest flybridge in its class the line of luxury yachts is known for, now a generous beach club and a 330-squarefoot gathering area are fitted on the foredeck. Righini also gave the 35 Metri an aggressive profile defined by angles and straight edges. It not only carries Azimut’s traditional DNA, but pushes the design forward to a new level.

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The Achille Salvagni interior is abundant in interior spaces, translating the very square, vertical look into a smoother, softer environment.
In addition to custom furniture, cabinets, and lamps, the walls, ceilings, and other décor have been completely reshaped. In the saloon, a circular sofa sits on a circular rug. The overhead lights are fitted into the ceilings, almost like natural appendages. Bronze elements and mahogany blend organically into the interior.

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The unorthodox design is a sharp swerve away from Azimut’s signature design, but has received warm welcome as the yacht’s new look. The new identity for this yacht has already sold a dozen models. It is soft and elegant in all the best unconventional ways. Natural light streams through the full-height windows in the saloon to its best effect, allowing it to highlight the few dark wood panels on the walls. Salvagni’s signature touch is also evident everywhere in his own signature chairs, lamps, and cabinets. His custom design has paid off handsomely for what is essentially a semi-custom yacht.

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That simple bespoke design carries across the interior to the owner’s suite and en-suite bathroom. The most striking feature on the Azimut 35 Metri is the curving, three-floor staircase with backlit onyx steps. A staircase on a yacht of this size is a rare sight.
The Azimut Grande 35 Metri will make its U.S. debut at the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show.

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Singapore’s $80 Million Penthouse

Vertical cities are the new rave in the world of the ultra-rich as they have everything in one place – from fine-dining restaurants to movie theaters to offices and luxurious SPAs. Now, Singapore is joining the craze with its new Tanjong Pagar Centre. The architectural marvel of glass and steel is Singapore’s tallest building at roughly 950 feet and plays host to 3 Wallich Street. Lucky buyers can snap a super penthouse that is both the largest nonland residence and the highest point in Singapore. But it doesn’t come cheap.

Singapore Penthouse

The modern triplex consists of 21,100 square feet and sits on the 62nd through 64th floors. It is equipped with five bedrooms, six full baths, and three half-baths. Natural light floods the penthouse, streaming from floor-to-ceiling windows that make up nearly every wall. The residence boasts some unique services offered from expert architects and designers who can tailor the space to the owner’s exact tastes and specifications. Marble floors and high-end appliances are just some of the luxurious additions that make the property into a real estate haven.

Singapore Penthouse

A large terrace reveals sweeping views over the city and there is an outdoor pool and Jacuzzi. Other amenities include a private elevator, state-of-the-art security systems, a fitness centre, an entertainment space, and a private wine cellar. GuocoLand’s concierge team is on-call 24/7 if owners want to book a private jet or charter a yacht for a weekend jaunt on the water.

Singapore Penthouse

The exclusive property is listed through Sotheby’s International Realty. Priced at $80 million, the penthouse includes access to the services and restaurants at the Sofitel Singapore City Centre, which is also positioned within the vertical city.

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BMW debuts a One-of-a-Kind Car Inspired by Yacht Maker Nautor’s Swan

Saint Tropez’s Voiles de Saint-Tropez, one of the last major international regattas of the season, is in full swing and thousands of yachting enthusiast got a sneak peek of the one-off BMW crafted from the powerful M760 Li. Sporting bright chrome work, “the Swan” sparkles in Damask Red, a metallic version of a well-aged Bordeaux.

BMW Swan

The car is the result of the collaboration between BMW’s Individual bespoke division and Nautor’s Swan, one of the world’s most prestigious yacht makers. Its release marks the 25th anniversary of BMW Individual, which was spawned after fashion designer Karl Lagerfeld asked BMW to put a fax machine in his car, and requested an interior trim to match the lining of his briefcase. This marked the beginning of a long line of customized vehicles for hundreds of wealthy customers.

BMW Swan

The M760Li’s silky V12 helps the vehicle sail away like a luxury yacht. In terms of performance, the model resembles the V8-powered Alpina B7 (also built from the newest BMW 7 Series), but there is something stately and unmistakably elegant about cruising with 610 hp and 12 cylinders under the hood.

BMW Swan

The interior of the Swan boasts Criollo Brown merino leather, a colour BMW had sent from its U.S. factory in Spartanburg, S.C. (where it’s offered as an option on X5 and X6 SUVs). Attention to detail goes far beyond with even the B-pillars wrapped in leather. Braided leather piping is woven by hand at a rate of one meter per hour. The most noticeable nautical touch is the oak slatted floor mats from the same wood found inside Nautor’s Swan’s yachts. The swan logo is embroidered on the front headrests and plush leather pillows on the rear seats.

BMW customers can customize any model starting with the 3 Series and up. There are 25 different colours of leather, numerous fabrics, 120 paints (including a wide range of matte colours), and any other special requests. Trims can also be customized.