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TOYOTA FV2 CONCEPT

TOYOTA FV2 CONCEPT

The entire auto industry is changing rapidly and there are a lot of outstanding futuristic concepts that are still waiting for the final production. Toyota’s FV2 concept has made its European debut at the 2014 Geneva Motor Show. FV2 is designed to capture the spirit of Toyota’s fun-to-drive philosophy.

The FV2 – which stands for “Fun Vehicle 2″ has a “mood-based” mirrored exterior that constantly moves and shifts colours and patterns. By incorporating technology from the Toyota Heart Project, a research programme that enhances communication between humans and artificial intelligence, the FV2 has been designed to connect to the driver emotionally. “A car must appeal to our emotions. If it’s not fun, it’s not a car,” Toyota president Akio said.

This fantastic futuristic car accumulated driving history to suggest destinations and driving skill information to assist the user.

The Toytoa FV2 is operated by the driving shifting his or her body to intuitively move the vehicle forward and back, left and right. The driver stands while in the vehicle, and shifts his weight to steer. Actually it’s like riding a horse. The FV2 comes with three wheels, and no steering wheel. And once inside, the driver operate the car without lifting a finger — relying on speech-controlled directions instead.

It’s hard to imagine something like this on the street, but it would be definitely more than fun to drive this extremely unusual car.

HONDA NM4 VULTUS

HONDA NM4 VULTUS

Honda has announced a new motorcycle – the limited edition NM4. It combines Japanese manga styling with existing Honda underpinnings.

“The NM4 Vultus exists because of a passion from deep within our company. We wanted to create something special, not just in the two-wheeled world, but truly unique in the whole world – a machine that engages a human soul like no other ” , says Mr Keita Mikura, NM4 Vultus Project Leader, Honda Motor Company.

Honda’s 2015 NM4 is powered by the NC700X’s 670cc liquid-cooled parallel-twin engine.
The bike also features a digital LCD dash with a gear position indicator, full LED lighting, plus a wide 200mm rear tire and an instrument display that can be illuminated in 25 different colors and the NM4’s mega comfortable seat is a super-low (25.6 inches). The rear pillion seat flips upright when not in use, locking to provide the rider with a secure backrest and almost fighter pilot riding position. Its angle can be adjusted through 3 positions and it slides back/forward 25mm through four settings, to fine-tune cockpit comfort.

There are also three modes of operation:
– MT mode gives full manual control, allowing the rider to shift with the handlebar trigger control buttons.
– Automatic D mode is ideal for city and highway riding, and achieves optimum fuel efficiency.
– Automatic S mode is sportier and the ECU lets the engine rev a little higher before shifting up, giving greater performance.

Honda has announced that it will begin selling a production version called the NM4, priced at $10,999. Only one paint option will be available – matt black.

NIRVANA YACHT

Nirvana yacht

Designed by Sam Sorgiovanni, the 88.5m Nirvana yacht was built in 2012 by Oceanco, one of the world’s finest yacht builders. This spectacular yacht has won Boat International Media’s prestigious award for Best Exterior Design & Styling and features everything a billionaire could possibly need.

Each floor of this six deck yacht is connected by a main stairwell and a six-person glass lift that is entwined with a spectacular woven stainless steel sculpture. The silver engraved elevator leads guests up to the owner’s deck which can be made totally private. The owner’s stateroom features a private sunbathing area with Jacuzzi forward, salon with terraces over the sea and a covered dining area aft. Exterior stairs on the aft deck lead to the bridge deck and the enormous and superbly equipped gym and spa.

Taking the lift four decks down to the lower deck brings guests to the 3D cinema and twin tender garages with 2 x 11 metre tenders, skiboat and 10 jet ski/waverunners. The guest cabins are located on the main deck and feature floor to ceiling windows and as well as the full beam VIP stateroom.

Interior layout sleeps up to 12 guests in 6 staterooms, including a master suite, 1 VIP stateroom, and 4 double cabins. Nirvana is also capable of carrying up to 27 crew onboard to ensure a relaxed luxury yacht experience. In the main saloon a sumptuous lounge and conversational area is separated from the stylish dining room by two large vivariums filled with water dragons, bearded lizards, turtles, a chameleon and exotic frogs.

Nirvana is powered by twin 3,600kW MTU 20V 4000M73L engines giving a top speed of 20 knots and a transpacific range. One of the most luxurious floating mansions on the planet has gone on the auction block with an estimated price of $306 million.

NANOFLOWCELL QUANT E-SPORTLIMOUSINE

2015 NanoFlowcell Quant e-Sportlimousine

The four-seater with full-length gull-wing doors is an intelligent vehicle concept. The Nanoflowcell Quant e-Sportlimousine is powered by salt water. Actually, it’s powered by a flow battery that uses a special formula of ionic charge-carrying salt water as its storage medium.

This unusual car is not unusual only because of the gull-wing doors, but primarily because of the flow cell. Quant e-Sportlimousine has a completely different way to store energy. There are tanks of negatively and positively charged electrolyte solutions in the vehicle. The liquids get pumped through a cell stack to produce electricity, which in turn powers the car’s four electric motors. So, four electric motors, one per wheel, draw their power from a nanoFLOWCELL energy storage system which works on the proven principles of the redox flow cell. Nanoflowcell says the flow technology operates with 80 percent internal efficiency.

Its wooden operating controls are also very specific and unusual. Never seen before in automobile control elements, the new sensorFLOW technology provides a extra fascinating visual effect. Once the Quant e-Sportlimousine is activated, the control elements become visible through the natural wood! “The wood surfaces are so thin that a light touch of the finger on the Sensorflow icons triggers the appropriate action,” says La Vecchia. “This innovation allows us use a sustainable material like wood to give you a direct connection to the digital control systems.”

The Quant e-Sportlimousine utilizes four electric motors, that give out a combined maximum output of 680kW (925PS or 912hp) and a normal operating output of 480 kW (653PS or 644hp).

2019 CORVETTE ZR1 – THE FASTEST PRODUCTION CORVETTE EVER BUILT

The Corvette has been an iconic car brand for decades, and Chevrolet has taken the mark to a whole new level. The 2019 Corvette ZR1 is a supercar with the highest performance engine, fastest track record and the most advanced technology in Chevrolet’s production history setting a new benchmark. With elegant looks and futuristic aerodynamics, the ZR1’s LT5 6.2L V-8 engine is capable of delivering 52% more displacement than its predecessor, the Z06’s LT4. The new and more efficient intercooled supercharger system is Chevrolet’s first dual-fuel-injection system utilising a primary direct injection and a supplemental port injection. This helps the LT5 achieve its incredibly high performance.

2019 Corvette ZR1 interior

The interior is entirely focused on the driver with a cockpit including Napa leather-trimmed competition sports seats, which are well vented and heated. There is also a carbon fibre-rimmed steering wheel that adds unmistakable style. Additional features include a Performance Data Recorder, and a top of the range Bose premium audio system.

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The 2019 Corvette has a newly designed front fascia which channels air to boost the propulsion-system. There will be a choice of exteriors like Sebring Orange Tint-coat, which comes with matching orange brake callipers. The signature orange seat belts, interior stitching and bronze aluminium interior trim, set the Corvette apart from its competitors.

The supercar can reach an incredible top speed of 210mph, with options for a seven-speed manual gearbox, or eight-speed paddle-shift racing style automatic transmission. The 2019 Corvette ZR1 exceeds expectations with its newly designed exterior, high-performance engine and interior refinement. It carries on the traditions of the Corvette mark and takes them into the future with this new creation of beauty. With its classic, yet modern design the Corvette ZR1 deserves to stand alongside its illustrious predecessors.

TIFFANY & CO LAUNCHES FIRST ENGAGEMENT RING COLLECTION IN 10 YEARS

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Tiffany & Co has surprised everyone with the first new engagement ring in more than a decade. The iconic American jewellery brand has always been at the forefront of exclusive and luxury jewellery, and the new collection is set to join the legendary Tiffany & Co. The rings feature exquisitely cut diamonds perfectly contoured to maximise their intrinsic brilliance. The contemporary and innovative design is typical of Tiffany and adds a distinctive touch.

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The most prominent engagement ring of the collection must surely be the Tiffany Setting, with its truly unique and unmistakable six-prong setting which has become a universal symbol of love. The Tiffany True enhances this legacy even further providing a novel and new representation of love as we see it today. Its beautiful geometric lines, and its ultra-fine and hand-crafted details combine to make this ring a modern day masterpiece.

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Tiffany was, of course, responsible for the original Tiffany Setting, created in 1886, which has since come to signify the ultimate in love and commitment. The brand new Tiffany True collection is the supreme expression of modern romance, and its unique setting and expertly cut diamond is an engagement ring to die for!it has some neat and subtle touches like its minimal architecture construction and discreet markings on its side. The design, which has become a Tiffany hallmark, allows the diamond to shine through to its brightest and most beautiful. The sizeable diamond is held in place by delicate prongs that blend flawlessly into the very fabric of the diamond, serving to make it look even more brilliant and stunningly pure than it is. The ring comes in 18 carat yellow gold with a yellow diamond, or in platinum with a white diamond.  Both are equally stunning and hit stores in fall 2019 in the USA and worldwide. The Tiffany True joins the elite in lavish style and truly deserves its legendary status.

TREE OF LOVE CLARIDGE’S 2018 CHRISTMAS TREE BY DIANE VON FURSTENBERG

Christmas Tree by Diane von Furstenberg

Claridge’s Hotel in London has become a fine purveyor of Christmas with the annual Christmas Tree creation gracing the hotel. This year, the wonderfully gorgeous tree was designed by Diane von Furstenberg, following up last year’s tree that was a marvellous Karl Lagerfeld creation. The Mayfair landmark draws visitors from far and wide, to witness an original and marvellous Christmas tree that is different each year. The 2018 tree captures the wonder and joy of Christmas and has been crafted with intricate details and the artistic flair of the famous fashion designer and frequent guest at Claridge’s.

Claridges christmas tree

The 2018 tree signifies Diane’s intense passion and firm belief in the power of love. With a touch of nature and astrological influences, the tree is a personal statement from the artist to the world. The Christmas Tree stands six metres high and blue tones shine out creating a wintry appearance. Incredibly, the tree has no less than 8,000 hand-painted decorations representing silver leaves, tiny glass spheres and 150 hand-blown beautiful glass hearts. There are also six hand-made, silver-leafed animals. The owl, which represents knowledge and wisdom. There is a horse signifying strength. A dove symbolises peace and a mouse curiosity. The deer represents gentleness and the peacock beauty. They are all originally crafted by hand with intricate detail.

Diane worked closely on the Tree of Love with her long-time friends and collaborators. They include the artistic set designer Stefan Beckman, and the talented artist and illustrator Konstantin Kakanias. Astrologer Shelley von Strunckel added the final touches. They all rose admirably to the challenge and honour of designing a masterpiece that will long be remembered in Claridge’s annual Christmas Tree showcase, with a rare beauty and majestic concoction. The tree winds up to the heavens from its roots and is derived from the universe, encapsulating values such as peace, love, harmony, in-depth knowledge, the truth, freedom, wisdom and enlightenment.

AMERICA’S NEW MOST EXPENSIVE “BILLIONAIRE” MANSION LISTS FOR $250 MILLION

A new over-the-top development is on the market from developer Bruce Makowsky the likes of which have been seen in the high end of the Los Angeles real estate market. The Luxury home builder and handbag tycoon is previously been known to have sold a property for $70m in 2015, and has now listed a new home for the spectacular price of $250 million.

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The 38,000-square-foot property, located in the wealthy enclave of Bel Air, is known as the most expensive home ever listed for sale in the U.S. It consists of 21 bathrooms and three whole gourmet kitchens along with two spacious master suites and 10 additional guest suites. The property also includes a 17,000 square-foot entertainment deck, 6 bars, a bowling alley lounge, 2 wine-champagne cellars, a private fitness center, home theatre, and a glass tile infinity swimming pool.

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Bel Air’s new estate for the ultra-affluent comes completely furnished. A unique twist is added by the fact that aside from the high-end furniture, this includes a collection of 12 super rare, vintage cars in the “auto gallery,” estimated at $30 million as well as 100 art installations, including a larger-than-life Leica camera.

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The price also includes a service team of 7 full-time staff members (including a chef, chauffeur, and masseuse), paid-for for two years and the helicopter featured in the 1980s TV show Airwolf.

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With sweeping 270-degree view of the L.A. skyline, ocean, and mountains, the home is expected to attract the interest of about 3,000 buyers, who are able to afford the wildly over-the-top home.

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NEW YORK’S NEW $19,000-PER-NIGHT SUITE

$19,000 is the price to pay to spend a night in New York City’s trendiest, most luxuries new suite in Manhattan. Unveiled last fall at the legendary Peninsula New York, the Fifth Avenue haven is more similar to a grand apartment than hotel accommodation. Guests are treated to sweeping views of the New York skyline while enjoying a total of 2,500 square feet at their disposal on the 17th-floor of the central skyscraper. A sprawling living room and elegant dining room are available for entertaining in addition to a gourmet kitchen, an impressive collection of commissioned art.

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Furnished to a high standard of modern austerity and comfort, the apartment boasts polished wood, floor-to-ceiling windows that let natural light flood in, marble details and plush furnishings for a laid-back, business-style ambiance. The Fifth Avenue residence manages to remain both crisp and elegant. There’s a separate room for work and play, an oversize tub in the master bedroom, a private study and a powder room.

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One of the focal points of the apartment is the kitchen – stocked with Gaggenau appliances and a 50-bottle wine refrigerator. Commissioned works of art tie the entire place together and include an impressive hand-painted mural by the Hong Kong artist David Qian as well as a custom-made headboard of embossed leather by Londoner Helen Amy Murray in the bedroom.

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The strategic location of the real estate jewel gives immediate proximity to all delights of Manhattan’s famous shopping avenue. The Museum of Modern Art, its Alexander Calder and Ellsworth Kelly masterpieces alongside the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Sculpture Garden are all within walking distance.

An even more striking feature is the proprietary tablet technology that allows guests to control everything from lighting to temperature, as well as communicate 24/7 with a team of highly-skilled hotel concierges—this is just a small fraction of the benefits that the Fifth Avenue Suite offers for its exclusive guests at the price of $19,000 a night.

A ONE-OF-A-KIND MIAMI BEACH HOME

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Florida has always attracted wealthy buyers with its splendid real estate offers and the latest high-concept residence to hit the market is a testament to how much the finer things in life are valued down there. The state-of-the-art mansion located at 6480 Allison Road in Miami Beach is an architectural masterpiece that will set its new owner back around $20 million. Designed and completed in 2016, the 11,270-square-foot waterfront wonder is an urban haven of outdoor and indoor style, bliss and lavish comfort.

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Characterized by open spaces and rectangular shapes, the one-of-a-kind mansion exhibits a natural theme with floor-to-ceiling windows that offer sweeping views of the ocean and smooth transition to outdoor patios. Giant sliding doors and dark Ipe wood make the home warm and inviting.

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The two-story residence comprises seven bedrooms, nine bathrooms, and two powder rooms. There are direct views of the water from almost every room and the 2,400-square-foot master suite boasts his-and-her walk-in closets and master bathrooms, a shoe and handbag closet, and a vanity. The second story also has a smaller master suite and additional bedrooms and bathrooms. Enormous glass windows reveal views towards the waterway.

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The Italian–style kitchen with white oak cabinets made by Dolce Vita and top-of-the-line appliances is a dream-come-true for any culinary enthusiast. A plush cinema room delivers a supreme movie-going experience, and a refrigerated wine display safeguards rare vintages. There is also a three-car garage with plenty of room for SUVs and sport cars.

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The lush backyard is situated on 110 feet of water frontage, and is beautifully landscaped with Florida’s world-famous palm trees. A 55-foot infinity pool with floating blocks suspended over it lead the way to an outdoor cabana and summer kitchen with a covered pavilion.

FOUR SINGLE MALTS FROM SCOTLAND

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Whiskey experts have always wanted to bottle the essence of Scotland – the inspiration behind the launch from Golden Decanters. The new collection consists of cask-strength whiskies that epitomize the sublime combination of age and beauty. Each of the four major distilling regions of Scotland is represented in one of the single malt whiskeys. The Highlands – with a 19-year-old Ben Nevis, which is a vibrant blend of wood, spice, and fruit. The Lowlands – with a 22-year-old Auchentoshan, which is deep, rich, and surprisingly full-bodied. Islay is represented by a 26-year-old Bowmore, which is a deceptively sweet single malt with a dry, elegant smokiness midpalate. And Speyside’s offers a 34-year-old Glenlivet that highlights the brand’s delicate sweetness without any overly woody notes—a surprise considering its age.

Each of the four bottles is delicately etched by Glencairn Crystal with a scene of Scotland’s finest pursuits —golf, hunting, fishing, and Highland cattle. The design itself is replicated on the handcrafted American oak boxes in which the bottles are housed. 180 numbered sets were created, of which more than 40 have already been sold since the launch in October. The four whiskies are sold as a set, for about $9,161. Golden Decanters has already announced a second release, with more to come, including a possible U.S. exclusive.

A pleasant pastime for wealthy buyers would be the guided distillery tours that the company offers to its customers who make their way to Scotland. An even more immersive experience is available over the course of two weeks to take in all of Scotland’s castles, fine restaurants, and distilleries. The Golden Decanters whiskies are included in the excursion package, the price of which is available on request.

RONIN MOTOR WORKS RELEASES THE LAST OF ITS “ART BIKE” MOTORCYCLES

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When a firearms-accessories company ventured into the world of limited-release motorcycles nearly 8 years ago, no one could have foreseen that Denver-based Ronin Motor Works would produce one of the most extreme emblems of open road travel. In 2010, Magpul Industries debuted the Ronin concept – their one-off bike that began life as a Buell 1125R. The name is inspired from the Japanese word for a samurai who has lost his master, and alludes to Harley-Davidson’s emblematic discontinuation of the Buell brand in 2009.

The concept generated enough interest in the luxury world of high-end motor toys to begin production. The initial set of 47 bikes came in seven sets – each with a different colour or design scheme, and released over the past 3 years. The final set, dubbed the “art bikes,” boasts one-of-a-kind designs from Denver-based artists. Surprisingly, the acid-etching patterns of Jason Thielke work well with the industrial design of the powerful bike and would certainly appeal to wealthy buyers with a penchant for renegade adventure. Price for the Ronin #5 is available on request but its predecessor retailed for $38,000.

Apart from the unique designs, the bike sports the same custom monoshock linkage suspension system and front-mounted radiator to help cool down the Rotax-designed motor. Stacked low and high beam headlights complete the sleek frame of the body with: system controls, gauges, seating, LED taillight, and even a radio-frequency identification (RFID) enabled key for push-button starting.

ROLLS-ROYCE INTRODUCES THE BLACK BADGE SERIES

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Rolls-Roys has taken the automotive world by storm with not one, but two new additions to the Black Badge series and they’re beyond classy. Ghost and Wrath are designed for “people who are elusive and defiant, the risk takers and disrupters, who break the rules and laugh in the face of convention.” Basically, the company is courting rich renegades with a grittier, more brooding take on its recognizable style.

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The new models will undoubtedly appeal to young, wealthy business moguls, who go by their own rules with cars that are “just as uncompromising and unapologetic in their choice of living and lifestyle as their predecessors.”

Technically and aesthetically, the ‘Black Badge’ is darker, more assertive, more confident and powerful, and more demanding than the standard Rolls-Royce silhouette. Black Badge leaves a powerful presence on the luxury landscape, marking a transformative moment for the great brand.

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The unique appeal of the Black Badge series come, in part, from the black hood ornament along with lightweight, carbon fiber wheels and “the deepest, darkest and most intense black ever seen on a production car surface.

The Ghost Black Badge is powered by a 6.6-liter V12, now making 603 hp and 620 lb-ft of torque. The eight-speed automatic adds a sense of urgency and delivers a soft ride. The Wraith benefits from 51 extra pound-feet of twist and a total of 623 hp. It gets changed transmission programming to offer a quicker feel.

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Both models are priced in the $300,000+ range, which means darkness sure doesn’t come cheap, but that’s fine.

LEXUS DEBUTS A STUNNING AND SPEEDY 42-FOOT SPORT YACHT

Lexus yacht

The designers behind the Lexus brand debuted the new Lexus Sport Yacht, a 42-foot one-off concept, engineered by the Toyota Marine Department, and built by Marquis Yachts of Pulaski. Promoting the ‘Lexus lifestyle’, the new boat is in a class of its own when it comes to performance capabilities, dimensions and design.

With a twin V-8 gasoline engines capable of producing a total of 950 hp and for a top speed of 49 mp, the complexity of the yacht is truly staggering. A “turbo-boost” option is available at the helm and can add 1,000 rpm over the rev limiter for a boost of speed. The hull is made entirely of carbon-fiber reinforced plastic, which has managed to decrease its weight by about 2,200 pounds. A 7-inch-diagonal touchscreen in the center of the steering wheel gives the captain complete control of all navigation and entertainment systems.

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Inspired by the LFA supercar, the concept yacht boasts a similar aggressive forefoot and a sleek exterior. With no walkways from the stern to the bow, to keep the flowing profile –designers have opted instead for a panel at the forward end of the saloon and a set of steps that lead to a hatch on the foredeck. The hatch has sufficient space for a deckhand to aid in anchoring and mooring the yacht. The seats lining the sides of the cockpit can comfortably fit up to eight passengers. Their form is functional and shaped like waves, allowing guests to face each other or turn and face forward.

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The cabinetry, panelling, and upholstery were manufactured in Italy and shipped to Wisconsin, where the interior was assembled. The interior exhibits a strong lounge-feeling with hand-painted glass panels on the walls, a curvy-striped etched-glass floor, and a long, off-white-leather couch that can seat eight.

THE MOST EXPENSIVE AMERICAN WHISKEY

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In 2013 when Michter’s released its Celebration Sour Mash whiskey at $4,000 per bottle, it was an exquisite experience to obtain one of the 273 bottles available. Now, there is an even pricier whiskey that spirit connoisseurs can appreciate. The second batch of the palatable liquid is the 2016 Michter’s Celebration Sour Mash. Put together by Willie Pratt before he retired, the new blend retails at $5,000 for a bottle—a bit pricier than its predecessor. There are only 256 bottles released worldwide, making it a rare treat.As Joseph Magliocco, Michter’s president, puts it – this is far more than another whiskey for the luxury market. “With Celebration,” he says, “we wanted to make an American whiskey that’s as good as anything being made anywhere else in the world. And I think we’ve succeeded.” For this reason an entirely new blend of six different Kentucky straight bourbons and ryes, aged from 10 to almost 33 years, was created. It was then bottled at cask strength, 58.4 percent alcohol by volume. The result has the texture of bourbon, with rich caramel, vanilla, and honey notes, but evolves like a rye, dry and spicy, with lots of oak on the long, dry finish. Michter’s trademark big, powerful flavor profile is also there, but the combination of the whiskeys in the blend make it resonate even deeper on the palate, with greater complexity.The Most Expensive American Whiskey02

The packaging of the new blend is similar to the 2013 Celebration. An elegant red wood-and-leather box contains the bottle; the 18-karat gold on both the stopper and the label was applied in France. There is a drawer beneath the bottle with a wax-sealed envelope with a letter signed by Willie Pratt for a personal touch.

PORSCHE WASHING MACHINE – CHINA’S LUXURY PRODUCT OF THE YEAR

Panasonic ALPHA Washing Machine

Yes, you read that right. A washing machine called Porsche! China is notable for unusual luxury products for the rich and while these tend to take many forms for affluent Chinese to flaunt their wealth, the latest craze is a luxury Porsche washing machine. The Panasonic Alpha Series washing machines are designed by Porsche’s Studio F.A. and have become the latest status symbol in China. Priced at US$2,700, there is no shortage of takers and Panasonic can hardly keep up with demand!

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The Porsche washing machines are just as stylish as the name suggests. Designed rather like a sports car than a home appliance, their uniqueness and beauty have captured the imagination of well-off Chinese, and the luxury washing machine is flying off shelves.

The Porsche designed Panasonic Alpha Series Washing Machine has a sporty look with a mat stainless steel body fully in keeping with the minimalistic approach adopted by the designers at Studio F.A. Porsche. The control buttons are cleverly incorporated into a TFT digital display screen that mimics a sports car’s instrument cluster. There is a useful rotary knob with an on/off button set to its left, and a flushed filling receptacle arranged to the right. The washing machine can be operated by remote control with WiFi, where the detergent can be loaded and temperature set. A text message is sent to remind users that the washing load is ready. The machine sports additional useful features and the design prevents mould from build up without having to keep the washer’s door wide open, allowing for better ventilation.

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The Panasonic Alpha Series Porsche Washing Machine by Studio F.A. is the latest and most unlikely exclusive luxury product of the year in China. Whether the thirst for zany luxury products such as this Porsche washing machine will catch on in Europe or elsewhere is anyone’s guess.

ROSEWOOD LUANG PRABANG’S NEW LUXURY RESORT IN CHINA PLUS ANCIENT WONDERS IN LAOS – $1,200 A NIGHT

Rosewood luxury resort in China

Rosewood Luang in China is Prabang’s newest luxury resort and promises a stay like no other. The ancient wonders of Laos are close at hand serving up a cultural bonanza and insight into the rich culture surrounding the area. The Laotian mountains, the stunning Mekong sunset and the eighth wonders of the world combined with the exquisite luxury creating Southeast Asia’s most desirable destination for those into culture, breathtaking landscapes and relaxation. Laos’s former royal capital was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1995, and it’s not hard to tell why. The quaint and picturesque town is snuggly nestled at the base of the forested mountains that tower over the town and Mekong River.

The luxury resort was created and designed by the renowned American architect Bill Bensley, whose signature style is based on taking a concept and stretching it beyond imagination. His vision was of an early 20th-century Laotian hill station, which is the basis of this innovative resort.

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The Luang Prabang started operations just a few months ago. The Rosewood luxury retreat resort features 23 villas, spacious suites and even tents. All the accommodation options have splendid mountain views and are furnished and decorated individually and uniquely. The resort is a short ten-minute drive from the old village centre and offers easy access to all the beautiful and inspiring destinations dotted around the area.

The resort has been tastefully designed to celebrate the rich culture of the Luang Prabang province and showcase the diversity of the tribes, travellers and explorers who passed through the area leaving their mark. Frenchman Auguste Pavie was such an explorer. In the late 1800s, he actually managed to become the governor of Luang Prabang. The resort celebrates the adventurous travels of many other explorers of note who used the Mekong river in the 1860s.

The resort’s hilltop tents are a throwback to a bygone era. The six tents measure 75 square metres each, and each one is dedicated to one of the tribes that used to live on the location. The tents have an ornate décor, with distinctive ethnic textiles and original antiques. In fact, all the rooms have artifacts and ornaments that tell their own stories and have their own history.

PIPER-HEIDSIECK BEJEWELLED CHAMPAGNE BOTTLES – US$152,000

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Good champagne has always been expensive, but rarely have we seen a bottle with a US$152,000 price tag. Piper-Heidsieck has just launched an extremely rare edition. The prestige cuvée Rare champagne is adorned with hundreds of tiny diamonds meticulously fixed on by hand. The bottle was exclusively designed by French jeweller Mellerio, and it contains vintage champagne from 1997. The champagne is aptly called Rare Le Secret High Jewellery. The bespoke bottles constitute the real value, although the champagne inside is one of the finest.

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Each individual bottle is fastened with a piece of jewellery and features a closure crafted from 24-carat gold. The limited edition champagne bottle has white and yellow gold bands wrapped around the neck. The bottle features gold ribbons that are set with over 500 tiny diamonds. Besides, there is a larger one-carat diamond, a ruby, and an emerald or a sapphire centerpiece. A total of 10 bottles were produced, and they include diamond and sapphire editions for sale in the USA and UK, a diamond version for France, and the other destinations have not yet been disclosed.

The champagne has a hint of sandalwood and yellow fruit, which provides a beautiful blend and wonderful taste. The whole package is housed within a mirrored presentation box. The Piper-Heidsieck bejewelled champagne bottles retail at US$152,000, with the UK versions going on sale at Harrods for £115,000. The value of such fine champagne presented in a diamond encrusted bottle will surely rise due to its limited run and prestigious champagne house Piper-Heidsieck. A collectible and a work of art, it would be a shame to drink the champagne leaving the priceless bottle of Rare Le Secret High Jewellery empty, now wouldn’t it?

PALAZZO VERSACE DUBAI

Palazzo Versace Dubai

The opening of Dubai’s long awaited Palazzo Versace hotel and resort is getting closer and closer. The world’s second Palazzo Versace Residences and Hotel offer the complete Versace lifestyle reflecting innovative design, high quality and sophisticated styling.

Palazzo Versace is set in the heart of the Culture Village, on the edge of the Dubai Creek. Only a few minutes drive from Dubai International Airport, the commercial district of Sheikh Zayed Road and the golden sandy beaches of Jumeirah, the Palazzo Versace is Dubai’s most prestigious waterside address. The fashion branded hotel expresses the vision and creativity of Gianni Versace.
The waterfront hotel of pure glamour features 215 luxury hotel suites furnished with an exclusive line of products from the Versace Home Collection, 169 condominiums and communal spaces, as well as the 80-storey D1 tower, which is adjacent to the Palazzo Versace Dubai. The hotel stimulates with fabulous restaurants, a water salon around a stunning lagoon-style pool, a sensual world class day spa, Versace boutique, sculptured artworks throughout hotel public spaces and gardens.

Rising on the shores of Dubai Creek, the D1 tower is stunning 80 storey residential skyscraper with exclusive residents facilities including skyrise lounge, private cinema, indoor pool, gymnasium and concierge services. Manufactured by a specialist, world-recognised German company, and designed to resemble traditional Emirati fishing nets, the D1 tower looks absolutely gorgeous.

The lavish condominiums consist of two wings, Ala Destra and Ala Sinistra, offer 169 luxury condominiums ranging from one to six bedrooms with access to the hotel’s services. Condominium features timber parquetry flooring throughout bedrooms, stone mosaic tilling throughout living areas, kitchen and bathrooms, multi-zoned air conditioning, front door intercom with video screen and much more.

LOUIS MOINET QATAR TOURBILLON

Louis Moinet Qatar Tourbillon

My favorite watchmaker surprised me once again. Louis Moinet presents its new Qatar Tourbillon, which includes two fragments of the only meteorite ever found in Qatar! All of Louis Moinet’s timepieces are either exclusive limited editions or unique pieces that include stones coming from the universe.

The meteorite used in the watch is called Qatar 001. It originated from the asteroid belt situated between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter and it ended up in Jariyan al Batnah, in Qatar.
Qatar 001 is the only meteorite found in the whole country and it was discovered on May 10th of 2010 by Luc Labenne. “It is a chondrite type H5, very rich in metal and showing visible chondrules – distinctive round grains”, says Luc.

The manual winding movement is housed in 47 mm 18k white gold case composed of no less than 59 parts and water resistant down to 30 meters. The power reserve of 72 hours can be seen thanks to the open-worked spring at 12 o’clock. At 6 o’clock the tourbillon makes one turn in 60 seconds.

The dial features a hand-engraved dark blue applique around its periphery, which depicts the sand dunes and two white gold Qatari bent swords, while the backdrop is made from one of the oldest known fossils on earth (three billion year old) Red Stromatolite rock. It occupies the central portion of the dial. This interesting detail makes the Qatar Tourbillon even more unique because the Red Stromatolite is one of the Earth’s most ancient fossils.

The Qatar Tourbillon is mounted on a hand-sewn Louisiana alligator strap secured with a folding buckle made of white gold and black titanium and it is available in an exclusive limited edition of 12 pieces.

40-FOOT WIDE UPPER EAST SIDE MANSION $114,077,000

40-foot wide Upper East Side mansion $114,077,000

Manhattan townhouse was built in 1883 and completely renovated in 2005. Every aspect of the 40-foot-wide home has been restored and embellished for modern and luxury living. Renovated by Vincent and Teresa Viola, the wide mansion on the Upper East Side exudes the ultimate in sophistication and grandeur and definitely it is aimed at the mega-rich clients.

The 19-room mansion comes in at around 20,000 square feet and features onyx-clad bathrooms, an indoor swimming pool and sauna, multiple fireplaces, a game room, a 2,000-square-foot roof dec, a movie theater, multiple fireplaces, an elevator, radiant heat flooring throughout, and high-tech control of everything from heating to sound and security.

The onyx-sheathed elevator services all six floors and there is also the roof terrace. This extremely luxurious palace offers 7 bedrooms, 6 full baths and 3 powder rooms which has been gutted and tastefully redone by the current owners.

For the complete pleasure and relaxation, the amazing mansion also includes the theater with a 12 foot screen and balcony, game room, bar, fitness room, sauna and a 23 x 12 foot swimming pool. Expensively and extravagantly fitted by Miz Viola, a ballroom sized formal living room with intricately patterned inlaid walnut floors, a monumental Brazilian travertine fireplace mantel, and a small, south-facing semi-circular balcony terrace.

Once-in-a-lifetime residential opportunity!

RIVA AQUARAMA WITH THE HEART OF LAMBORGHINI

Riva Aquarama with the heart of Lamborghini

If I mention Lamborghini, what will be your first association? Maybe an extraordinary luxury car? In most cases yes, but this time we will go from the land into the water and continue our story about the Lamborghini.

Ferruccio Lamborghini’s Riva Aquarama speedboat powered by two Lamborghini engines, has emerged after an extensive three year restoration. The majority of Riva Aquarama were powered by low-revving – though extremely powerful and reliable – American V-8 engines.

Forty-five years after it was commissioned by Ferruccio himself, it’s back on the water, complete with not one, but two classic Lamborghini V12s. Specially adapted for use in a boat, each 4.0-liter V-12 produces 350-horsepower, propelling the Aquarama to 48 knots (55 landlubber’s miles per hour). This made it not only the fastest Aquarama ever built, but an Aquarama with the heart of a Lamborghini.

„It was complete, but decades in the salty environment was not very good for the wood and it needed quite a lot of work,“ says Sandro Zani, the owner of Dutch Riva. „We replaced the bottom and partially the sides and deck, but we kept all the original framework, the seats are still the original seats, all the hardware, instruments, that was all kept and restored.“

Ferruccio Lamborghini died in 1993, and the boat has now passed into the hands of a private collector. In the Ferruccio Lamborghini Museum in Italy, one of the two original engines from the Riva can still be seen.

EC155-B1 – EUROCOPTER EC 155 DAUPHIN

EC155-B1 - Eurocopter EC 155 DAUPHIN

Formed in 1992 from the merger of German DaimlerChrysler Aerospace AG (DASA) and the helicopter divisions of French Aérospatiale, the Eurocopter Group is a global helicopter manufacturing and support company. The efficient EC155 B1 represents beauty and functionality combined.

Developed by Eurocopter from the Dauphin family for civil aviation use, the Eurocopter EC155 is a long-range medium-lift passenger transport helicopter. It is Eurocopter’s top-end 5-ton twin-engine helicopter. Depending on the customer configuration EC155 can cary up to 13 passengers along with 1 or 2 crew. EC155 B1 offers very latest technologies innovations such as the 5 blade Spheriflex main rotor and an outstanding autopilot to provide the highest safety and comfort. State-of-the-art glass cockpit and avionics considerably reduce the pilot’s workload.

The tail rotor has 10 blades irregularly spaced around the hub. These improvements have substantially reduced the external noise, which is now 4.5 dB below the current standards of the International Civil Aviation Organization. Today Eurocopter has established itself as the standard for VIP helicopters.

The EC155 B1 is equipped with two Turbomeca Arriel 2C2 turbine engines, which offers significant power and delivers a long range as well as the fastest cruising speed in its class. Interior includes soft leather club seats, adjustable reading lights, power sources for laptops, cabin air-conditioning as well as air outlets for each passenger.

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