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Old Napa Vintages Worth the Trip

Two of Napa Valley’s favourite boutique wineries—Far Niente and Nickel & Nickel—are now allowing visitors to book relaxed, private tastings that introduce them to samplings of exclusive cellared bottles going back a decade.

Far Niente has created a much more personal experience with this service, where guests can relax in the expansive gardens and enjoy the Private Cave Collection Tasting ($100 per person) with four aged selections of the estate’s Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay, as well as current releases. The winery offers a Private Estate Tasting ($75 per person) with four different wines from the Far Niente group.

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At Nickel & Nickel, tasters can gather on the wraparound porch, in the wine cellar of the historic John C. Sullenger House, or in the restored 19th-century Gleason Barn. The vineyard’s Private Terroir Tasting ($125 per person) presents a north-to-south sampling of eight single-vineyard Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignons, which includes limited-production bottlings only available at the winery.

Wine tasting at Nickel & Nickel have long been favoured by connoisseurs of fine wine as they introduce the senses to a palette of acquired tastes and textures.

The Private Single Vineyard Classic Tasting ($75) comprises four single-vineyard Napa Valley Cabernets and demonstrates how dramatically wine can be affected by minute variations in location.

All of the private tastings last an hour and the wineries will waive one tasting fee for a six-bottle purchase or wine club signup. This is a unique opportunity to marvel the Far Niente 125-year-old stone estate building, sitting under cork oak trees planted by the original owner in the late 1800s.

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Botswana’s Chic New Safari Lodge

Natural Selection is offering a fresh take on luxury adventure with the debut of its first lodge, Sable Alley. Situated in northern Botswana’s Khwai Private Reserve, the private lodge opened in May and is as stunning as it is sustainable. The compound consists of 12 elevated tents overlooking a hippo-filled lagoon in one of the region’s most pristine wildlife hot spots.

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Sophisticated in design and ambience, Sable Alley is an earthly oasis in the midst of nearly a half-million-acre reserve composed of floodplains, rivers, lagoons, and savannas. Each of the spacious tents boasts its own private terrace; a private swimming pool and lounge offer further relaxation with a view. For guests with an adventurous streak, there is a treetop sky bed high above a watering hole to experience falling asleep to the sounds of elephants, buffalo, and big cats below.

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Sable Alley’s biggest advantage is its game-drive experience. The lodge offers a unique opportunity to explore the region’s diverse landscapes—and its stunning wildlife, including leopards, lions, cheetahs, wild dogs, and the resident sable antelope. Birding is also on the menu of activities to do, especially while on foot, drifting along in a mokoro or on a sunset boat cruise.

Safari Lodge

Guests will have the opportunity for even more intimate wildlife interactions as soon as the lodge’s series of hides are completed. They will form a line of shrouded cottages located near watering holes that offer ultra-close-up viewings. Exciting night rives are also offered to guests for a chance to encounter nocturnal creatures such as leopards, spikey porcupines and fearless honey badgers.

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All tents have been designed and decorated with comfort and style in mind. Elevated onto raised decks, the luxurious tents offer an uninterrupted view of the lagoon. Each comes with en suite bathrooms, private verandas and private, indoor & outdoor showers.

Floyd Mayweather Jr in Las Vegas for a fight described by Sugar Ray Leonard as 'about history'

Floyd Mayweather’s masterpiece of a house

Floyd Mayweather is known as an extravagant man who doesn’t settle for anything else than spectacular. His 22,000-square-foot five-bedroom, seven-bath custom-built mansion in Las Vegas redefines the standard for wealth and luxury.

Floyd Mayweather

With ceilings high over 24 feet high, wood panelling and tone fireplaces – the house is adorned with crystal chandeliers, red silk and textured glass. The house sits on a golf course, giving its owner quick access to the manicured fields for a game.

Floyd Mayweather

When it comes to technology, the mansion has quite a few features to enjoy. The kitchen, for example, has touch-screen video game consoles on the kitchen counter. An outside area provides plenty of space for lounging with a sofa, decking and a sun-drenched swimming pool. A custom-built sauna and massage area ensure that Floyd and his guests can get treated to relaxing SPA procedures any time they please.

Floyd Mayweather

One of the most impressive scenes is in the garage of the mansion, where countless cars valued at over $15 million are neatly tucked away. Floyd Mayweather owns over 16 Rolls Royce and has purchased over 100 cars from a single dealership. Other of his gems include Ferraris, three Bugattis, a Lamborghini, and a McLaren.

Floyd Mayweather

The custom-built 600-square-foot walk-in closet holds his personal jewellery collection and designer clothes that he can’t possibly wear in his lifetime. A collection of diamond-encrusted gold watches from Piquet, Hublot, Chopard and more seat neatly in drawers and are polished to perfection by the numerous staff.

Floyd Mayweather

Purchased for about $9 million, the house has been further customized and now has a wine cellar loaded with Moët & Chandon and Cristal champagne. There is even a glass cabinet to display his most valuable possessions – his boxing belts.

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Vintage Watches – The Omega Edition

Wealthy connoisseurs have always had a thing for vintage Omega watches, which are a status symbol in the horological world.

As the iconic watch brand celebrates its 60th anniversary and the reissue of the Railmaster, Omega’s vintage pieces are seeing further increases in value and interest. Three vintage Omegas have now been reissued in varying forms: the Railmaster, the “Big Blue” and the Speedmaster.

The Omega Seamaster 120 Big Blue is Omega’s latest iteration of the chunky diver chronograph from 1972. The Big Blue was one of the first chronographs capable of handling a 120M dive. It has a crystal and dial appear effectively mint, with faint and even aging present on its indices and hands. Its 100 mesh bracelet is not original to the piece, but that shouldn’t impact its sale price significantly given its condition.

Omega Seamaster 120 Big Blue

The Omega Railmaster was launched the same year as the Speedmaster, but never garnered nearly as much attention as its moon-bound brother. Similar to the Rolex Milgauss, the Railmaster was specifically designed for railway employs, although it quickly gained popularity with engineers and scientists whose daily tasks involved significant exposure to magnetic fields. The vintage charm of this piece is clearly visible with its 38mm width and pristine condition.

Omega Railmaster

The 1969 Omega Speedmaster Professional is easier to find in antique houses than the previous two models, but earlier references like the pre-moon 145.012 are a real gem. The same reference worn on the surface of the moon by Buzz Aldrin himself has gained somewhat of a cult symbol. The model, complete with a flat-link bracelet, is a solid example of the ultimate icon from Omega.

1969 Omega Speedmaster Professional

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Stellar Jewelry in Time for the Eclipse

August’s eclipse is an event – much anticipated and celebrated in the wealthy circles. What better way to shine than with these exquisite offerings by some of the best jewelry designers in the world? These cosmically inspired designs are a symphony of stars, crescent moons, and planets recreated thanks to sparkling gems and gold.

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A $6,800 offering comes from renowned designer David Yurman in the form of the Supernova necklace. The beaming 18-karat-gold Supernova ear climbers (priced at $7,800) complete the collection and offer a fiery modern design for the cosmopolitan woman.

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Bibi van der Velden comes with a delightfully fresh and perfectly mismatched star and crescent moon earrings. The Galaxy Planet drop earrings are priced at $9,750 and are adorned with a pair of green-gray Tahitian pearls orbited by a ring of 18-karat rose gold. The Dutch designer’s Big Galaxy opal ring from the same collection captures planets, stars, and bejeweled orbit routes and can be purchased for the sum of $17,110.

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Frozen mid-swirl, Mindi Mond has found a new way of presenting the classic combination of sparkling diamond and platinum in a set of earrings with otherworldly galactic energy. The delicate Art Deco–inspired filigree setting hold more than 12 carats of white rose-cut and old mine-cut diamonds. Naturally, such perfection doesn’t come cheap at $36,960 for the luxurious set.

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Even renowned Maison Chanel is not indifferent to the stargazing trend. The brand debuted its Nuit de Diamants 18-karat white-gold ring. It centers on a crisp diamond star that seems to have spun around the wearer’s finger with a trail of black-spinel stardust in its wake. Price for this spectacular piece is available upon request.

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Russia’s Most Expensive Diamond

Dynasty – potentially the most expensive diamond manufactured in the history of Russia – is about to go on sale. It is hard to say how much the keenest buyer will have to shed to own this flawless piece, but the starting price is announced at the staggering $10 million.

Russian miner Alrosa announced the November auction of its rare collection of polished diamonds produced domestically, including the giant 51.38-carat gem. The large, traditional round-cut diamond, has a 2.5 cm (1 inch) diameter, making it equal in size to the visible part of a human eye. This makes it the first of such size and quality in the history of Russian jewelry.

The Dynasty Collection took a year and a half for Alrosa’s specialists to create. It consists of five polished diamonds from a 179-carat Romanovs rough diamond, extracted at one of the company’s mines in Russia’s far eastern Yakutia region in 2015.

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The collection pays homage to the Tsar Peter the Great, who built the city of St Petersburg, and the Romanov dynasty, which ruled Russia for 300 years. The name was chosen in line with Alrosa’s intention to revive the traditions and memory of renowned Russian jewelers famous for their craftsmanship and filigree since Russia’s first cutting and polishing factory founded by Peter I (the Great) early in the 18th century.

Alrosa and Anglo American’s De Beers unit auction for the first time auctioned polished stones this year, produce about half of the world’s rough diamonds.

Dynasty is the collection’s main 51.38-carat diamond with a 57-facet traditional round brilliant cut with triple excellent cut, D color and VVS1 clarity. No other diamond manufactured in Russia has come close to this size and quality and is expected to attract a lot of interest from potential buyers.

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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.

Knob Creek

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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.

Andean Explorer sleeper train

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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The Corum Golden Bridge Rectangle Watch

Corum‘s iconic Golden Bridge watch debuted in 1980 in its original barrel-shaped case. Last year, the Swiss watchmaker introduced a redesigned version in a more traditional round case. At this year’s Baselworld fair, Corum revealed another variation of its signature Golden Bridge, in a new, Art Deco-influenced rectangular case.

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The Corum Golden Bridge Rectangle, like its round-cased predecessor has been designed by Dino Modolo. It boasts an eye-catching baguette-shaped, linear-oriented, manual-winding movement, Caliber CO113. The movement is designed to be visible in the center of the open dial with a high level of engraving and finishes on its 18k gold bridges and plate. It is surrounded on both sides by 18k gold elements that represent six Roman numerals whose curved shapes and rivets resemble the intricate architecture of a bridge. The movement’s timekeeping functions are on full display. The spring barrel at 6 o’clock feeds energy to the escapement at 12 o’clock. Caliber CO113 has a frequency of 28,800 vph (4 Hz) and a power reserve of 40 hours.

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The curved rectangular case sports a grooved winding crown at the bottom – a hallmark feature of Corum’s Bridges collection. Both are made of 5N 18k rose gold and measure 29.5 mm by 42.2 mm. The baton-shaped hour and minute hands are rhodium-plated and faceted. Both the front and back of the watch are covered with nonreflective sapphire crystals. The watch is water-resistant to 30 meters. The strap is made of brown alligator leather with a triple-folding clasp made of rose gold. The price for the new Corum Golden Bridge Rectangle is $36,900.

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A New Jewelry Collection from Rihanna and Chopard

The famous pop singer and fashion icon Rihanna teamed with Caroline Scheufele – Chopard’s co-president and creative director – to produce a collection of jewels under the title “Rihanna ♥ Chopard.” It will comprise high jewelry pieces and a collection of limited edition jewels made with18к“Fairmined” gold, cabochon rubies, orange and yellow sapphires, tsavorites and 14 carats of turquoise beads.

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Official unveiling of the collection was in May 2017 to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the Festival de Cannes red carpet. Also, it celebrated Chopard’s 20th year as the official partner of the Cannes Film Festival. The pieces represent one-of-a-kind floral inspired multi-colored chandelier earrings and marquise-cut diamond solitaire ring. They were first worn by Rihanna at the recently held Grammy Awards, and the cover of Harper’s Bazaar. The jewels are inspired by the singer’s island roots—the lush gardens of Barbados and the bright colors of Carnival.

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The second collection is the limited edition Rihanna ♥ Chopard Joaillerie Collection. It is characterized by minimalist geometry and sharp, clean lines. Based on Chopard’s classic Ice Cube shape, it mixes in a touch of what the luxury brand describes as “a synergy of urban modernism and pure design.” The nine-piece collection starts at $1,460 is available for purchase at the brand’s boutiques worldwide. Only 2,000 editions per design will be produced and they can be pre-ordered.

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Rihanna stated about the Chopard Brand, “I have always been in love with Chopard’s exquisite jewelery, so to actually design collections with them is something I still can’t believe,” she says. “It was a really incredible process and I learned so much! I can’t wait for everyone to see it.”

Pieces in the already released collection are characterized by bold colors and beautiful floral designs that feature certified fair mined gold, green beryls, aquamarines, topaz, and diamonds. There is also an automatic watch in 18-karat white gold that is set with more than 30 carats of diamonds.