FrontRunners: Secrets of the Rose

    In 1477, Austrian archduke Maximilian I (not yet head of the Holy Roman Empire) presented Mary of Burgundy with the first recorded diamond engagement ring. Such rings remained uncommon until 1948, when the N.W. Ayer & Son ad agency coined the slogan “A Diamond Is Forever” for South Africa’s De Beers (www.debeers.com). Now, of course, almost every engagement or wedding involves the purchase of a diamond—a tradition that De Beers is reinforcing with its new Secrets of the Rose collection, a line of 27 pendants, earrings, necklaces, watches, and other pieces in various combinations of platinum, diamonds, and white and rose gold. The collection’s highlight, the Secret Kiss of the Rose ring ($1.2 million), features a 10-carat white diamond overlaying a smaller, 0.8-carat pink one that calls to mind a nestled rose. Both are surrounded by 2.5 carats of white pavé diamonds set in platinum... Those purchasing an engagement ring also may wish to consider Hollandia sleep systems (www.hollandiaus.com). The beds, which range in price from $10,000 to $50,000, are available at the company’s first American showroom, in Philadelphia. Among other amenities, the beds feature massage and sound systems and a specially cushioned area in the shoulder zone. The latex mattresses have both a winter side, which is soft and enveloping, and a summer side, which is firmer and cooler.

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