2006 Private Preview

Overview

The Top 20 For the Coming Year

From This Issue

Furnishings: Source of Profusion

By the numbers, Gregorius/Pineo has outdone itself: The maker of furniture re-creations based on 15th-to-18th-century European and Asian antiques has introduced 40 designs and 25 finishes with its 2005 collection, when in a typical year it adds just five new pieces. But instead of representing a break from tradition, Gregorius/Pineo’s prolific year draws heavily from […]

Open House

Seated in a plump leather chair in the third-floor lounge of Casa Casuarina, his elaborately decorated Miami Beach mansion, Peter Loftin does not look the part of someone who excels at hosting exclusive parties. The 47-year-old millionaire, who earned his fortune in the telecommunications industry, sports disheveled blond-white hair and wears a red Casa Casuarina […]

2006 Private Preview: Elara Fusion Mediator Movie

Media servers—computer-based devices that play DVDs, tune in TV programs, serve as personal video recorders, and store MP3 music, among other functions—promise unprecedented entertainment options and convenience. Yet the same problems that plague computers also afflict media servers. Setting up the devices usually requires prodigious patience and considerable technical competence, and few media servers are […]

Travel: The Far West

Lloyd Nakano typically wears a suit for his job as managing director of the Hotel Seiyo Ginza in Tokyo. But on this morning in late May, as he does several times a month, the slim, energetic gentleman dons jeans for a visit, with a few hotel guests in tow, to the sprawling, bustling Tsukiji fish […]

2006 Private View: St Andrews Grand

The six-story, red-brick edifice of the former Grand Hotel looms over the final green of the Old Course at St Andrews, at the intersection of Golf Place and Scores Street in the Auld Grey Toon. For more than a century, the building’s distinctive Victorian cupola has provided a target point for golfers on the course’s […]

2006 Private Preview: Mandarin Oriental Tokyo

Viewing Tokyo from within the Mandarin Oriental Tokyo, scheduled to open in December atop the 39-story Nihonbashi Mitsui Tower in the Nihonbashi district, will provide an exhilarating experience. But as you savor the sights of the 844-square-mile metropolis sprawling beneath the hotel’s 179 rooms, its three showcase restaurants, or its two-story spa, a question might […]

2006 Private Preview: Poseidon Undersea Resort

Spend a night in the resort that Bruce Jones hopes to construct, and the tropical fish and shadowy sharks surrounding your king-size bed will not be in your dreams; they will be swimming in the Caribbean waters outside the windows of your suite. If it is ever built, the Poseidon Undersea Resort in the Bahamas […]

2006 Private Preview: Acqualina

By design, Acqualina, the Rosewood resort scheduled to open in February 2006 in Sunny Isles, Fla., will be all wet. The resort’s name represents a fancifully loose translation of the Italian word for “water’s edge,” and with several fountains, three pools, and 400 feet of Atlantic Ocean coastline, the property will offer an abundance of […]

2006 Private Preview: Amanyara

When Amanyara opens on Providenciales this December, it will become Singapore-based Amanresorts’ only property in the Caribbean region. But the contemporary Asian–style resort—consisting of 40 spacious guest pavilions crowning a rocky headland at the tip of the Northwest Point nature reserve—hardly will be alone in the once-quiet Turks and Caicos.   Thanks to its unspoiled […]

Sea Changing in The South Pacific

When the shark appears, we are snorkeling in the Beqa Lagoon, south of the main island of Viti Levu and north of Royal Davui, one of the smaller links in Fiji’s chain of more than 300 isles. The latter, home to the recently opened Royal Davui private island resort, seems worlds away, as does our […]

Upping the Ante

Former university of Texas coach Darrell Royal, echoing the sentiments of the 1st-century Roman philosopher Seneca, once observed, “Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity.” He was referring to football, of course, but his words also could apply to the Venetian hotel in Las Vegas, which nearly two years ago began constructing its five […]

Journeys: A Whale of a Time

Stare long enough at the dark waters of Iceberg Alley off the northern coast of Newfoundland, and the swells and whitecaps begin to look like whales. On this late-June morning, as I sit in a kayak, bobbing like flotsam in the North Atlantic, these apparitions will have to suffice, for the real whales, dozens of […]

Journeys: Harboring A Cold-Blooded Killer

Before the murderer showed up, L’Anse au Pigeon was a peaceful and prosperous place on the shores of an inlet of Quirpon Island, home to a handful of fishermen and their families. But in 1929, life in the village was upended, according to Earl Pilgrim’s book Curse of the Red Cross Ring (Flanker Press, 2002), […]

From the Editor: Hollywood and the Gilded Age

Private preview. World premiere. Though this issue concerns itself with debuts of another sort, these phrases nevertheless strike the imagination like a stage light, conjuring in the mind’s eye such cinematic temples as Sid Grauman’s Chinese and Egyptian theaters, their sculpted facades, crisscrossed by cobwebs of kliegs, presiding over long red carpets that convey a […]

Robb Design Portfolio: Surreality Check

Unable to locate the original Plexiglas chess pieces that artist Isamu Noguchi made in 1944 for this chess table (left), Larry List, guest curator of The Imagery of Chess Revisited—which runs from October 21 through March 5, 2006, at the Noguchi Museum in Long Island City, N.Y.—spent nine months fashioning a replica set for the […]

FrontRunners: New York Tea Party

Yumcha (212.524.6800, http://www.yumchanyc.com) barista Joseph Mahek initially was uncertain of what to expect from Jin R, the Chinese chef and tea expert who flew in from Beijing to teach Mahek how to serve the tea list that she had created for the new Greenwich Village restaurant. “I was intimidated at first,” he recalls, “but she […]

FrontRunners: Cottage Industry

The five new guest cottages at the Bowmore Distillery (+44.1.496.810.671, http://www.bowmorescotch.com) bring a much-overdue amenity to the home of Scotch. Said to be Scotland’s first public accommodations located at a distillery, the cottages ($70 to $445 per night) include living rooms, kitchens, and from one to six bedrooms. Bowmore is one of seven single-malt distilleries […]

FrontRunner: Shark Week

San Francisco–based Shark Diver (888.405.3268, http://www.sharkdivers.com) has been dropping clients into Great White–infested waters off the Mexican coast for more than five years. This summer, the tour provider and outfitter acquired the M/Y Kayana, a 120-foot Vosper Thornycraft vessel designed by the late Jon Bannenberg, to transport thrill-seekers to the murky marine environment in comfort […]

FrontRunner: Select Smoke

  Alec Bradley Medalist Enthusiasts who pride themselves on their ability to identify cigars’ birthplaces by taste alone will be stumped by the new Alec Bradley Medalist. The Medalist, the latest release from the Dania, Fla.–based Alec Bradley Cigar Co., incorporates five tobaccos of disparate lineages: a wrapper from Costa Rica, a binder from Connecticut, […]

FrontRunner: From the Robb Cellar

  Kuleto Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon 2002Pat Kuleto is among those rare creative individuals who do not make things—they make worlds. This inventive energy one usually finds in novelists, painters, or composers, whose numinous chore it is to place plain words upon a page, strokes of pigment on a cloth, or simple notes of sound […]

Collectibles: Full Nelson

The Battle of Trafalgar was British Admiral Horatio Nelson’s finest hour, and it was one of his final hours. The fight, which occurred near Spain’s Cape Trafalgar on October 21, 1805, pitted the French and Spanish navies against a British fleet of 27 vessels. Largely because of Nelson’s tactics, the British triumphed, sinking or capturing […]

Dining: Vive Las Vegas

In his paris restaurant, Guy Savoy serves his steamed turbot on a bed of baby spinach topped with a poached egg. The whitefish’s delicate taste mixes so divinely with the salad that you are inclined to chew slowly, hoping to prolong the turbot’s presence on your plate. Just as the last bite disappears, however, the […]

Wine: The Bordeaux of Bel Air

Tom Jones knows how to keep a secret. As the CEO of Northrop Corp. from 1952 to 1990, he was the steward of innumerable secrets of the State variety, including the B-2 Spirit bomber. Though Jones is retired now, the affinity for discretion that he cultivated during his career persists, at least at his Bel […]

Spirits: Modern Love

When Melkon Khosrovian introduced his fiancée, Litty Mathew, to his Armenian relatives, she balked at joining in one of the family’s long-standing traditions. Armenian dinner gatherings, like those of other Eastern European cultures, invariably include vodka—not wine—to complement the courses. “There were many dinners with family and friends, and, of course, there was a lot […]

Smoke: Pyramids in the Alps

Every great day of skiing ends on an elegiac note, when the lifts have closed, the light is waning, and it is time to pull off your boots. Cigar smokers visiting Courchevel, however, can find solace in the promise of an après-ski evening at the Hotel Byblos Des Neiges’ cigar lounge. Here, Antoine Chevanne, the […]

Art: Vane Glories

Appearing suitably alarmed and clad curiously in a fur bikini, Raquel Welch is trapped in the talons of the pterodactyl that leans against a wall in Anthony Holand’s Martha’s Vineyard, Mass., workshop. The 15-inch-tall pale green plastic model depicting a scene from the 1966 film One Million Years B.C. will be Holand’s muse while he […]

2006 Private Preview: Partagas Limited Reserve Decadas

Many smokers consider the Partagas 150 one of the greatest cigars ever created, and perhaps the first from the Dominican Republic that could rival or surpass the finest smokes from Havana. Collectors began hoarding the cigars, which were produced in a limited run in 1995 to celebrate Partagas’ 150th anniversary, almost immediately upon their release, […]

FrontRunners: Going With The Grain

Putting is psychological, believes Jim Chiasson, founder of Greenwood Golf (802.864.7117, http://www.greenwoodgolf.com) of Burlington, Vt., so why not use a club that makes you feel good? The machining-industry veteran’s company, which he launched in 2003, aims to improve a golfer’s disposition—and his or her scores—with its line of custom putters made from natural woods.   […]

Golf: Plowing through Paradise

Based on appearances, few locations would seem to offer a more fertile environment for golf than the Riviera Maya, a lush, 81-mile-long stretch of jungle and beach running south from Cancún in the Mexican state of Quintana Roo. And yet according to P.B. Dye, designer and builder of the new Playa Paraiso golf course at […]

2006 Private Preview: Cancún Golf

The fleet of construction cranes along the Riviera Maya coastline indicates the sea change in store for Cancún. Traditionally the terrain of spring-breakers and package-deal tourists, this city on Mexico’s Yucatán Peninsula has shifted its focus toward five-star resorts and boutique hotels—and the people who would occupy them. “We are trying to bring a more […]

Ice Capades

It is cold—bitterly cold, wickedly cold—in St. Moritz, Switzerland, in the final week of January, with temperatures climbing no higher than the single digits. A detailed ice sculpture of a wristwatch, outside the F.P. Journe boutique across from the Badrutt’s Palace hotel, remains intact for five days. Fur coats suddenly seem practical. Locals who overhear […]

FrontRunner: Watch For Sail

The recreational sailors and fishermen who frequent San Francisco’s Golden Gate Yacht Club must have been surprised to learn that a $160,000 commemorative tourbillon from Girard-Perregaux (www.girard-perregaux.com, 877.846.3447) would bear their club’s burgee. The modest gray structure on the bay became conspicuous when high-tech mogul Larry Ellison made it the base for his 2006 America’s […]

Watches: Future Shock

The recent spate of high-tech-looking complicated watches would have seemed incomplete without a contribution from Jorg Hysek, watchmaking’s foremost evangelist of modernist design. Hysek, who works with a team of designers, has been eschewing convention for more than 30 years, periodically releasing advanced and sometimes assertively futuristic designs under his own Jorg Hysek marque or […]

Pens: Portrait in Exclusivity

Customization has long been in Montegrappa’s repertoire, but Italy’s oldest penmaker has redrawn the parameters of personalization with its new Portrait collection. Each $19,500 Portrait pen begins as a blank canvas. The 18-karat pink or white gold barrel is etched with a neutral diamond pattern that frames a prominent oval area left open for an […]

Wardrobe: Sure Footing

When Michael Toschi worked for Reebok in the early 1990s, he helped create progressive sneaker technology such as built-in air pumps and a trampoline heel system that balanced and cushioned the foot as one walked. Later, as cofounder of the Ariat equestrian boot brand, Toschi designed for the boots’ arches a fork-shaped carbon-fiber shank that […]

Rotary Club

Upon releasing its J12 tourbillon this year, Chanel unwittingly (and perhaps unfairly) became the industry poster child for the commodification of the tourbillon. Some horological connoisseurs shook their heads with dismay: a tourbillon from a fashion brand? More than 100 companies now produce tourbillon watches, a figure unimaginable just a few years ago, and one […]

2006 Private Preview: Zenith Grande Class Traveller Répétition Minutes

“This watch,” asserts Zenith president Thierry Nataf, “shows our quality and capability to the world.” It is a familiar refrain for a Swiss watch company executive, but in the case of the Grande Class Traveller Répétition Minutes, a remarkable timepiece supports the declaration. Unlike traditional grand complications, the Zenith mixes modern features—such as alarm, multi–time […]

2006 Private Preview: F.P. Journe Sonnerie Souveraine

Watchmaker F.P. Journe expects his forthcoming grande sonnerie timepiece to be so coveted that he will engrave both the case and the movement with its owner’s name. In doing so, Journe intends to limit the pieces’ appeal in the auction market and thus discourage anyone from acquiring one for purely speculative purposes. The model will […]

2006 Private Preview: Ballantyne

Ever since Gucci and Burberry recaptured and then eclipsed their former glories, countless other fashion brands have attempted comebacks. Next spring, the Scottish cashmere firm Ballantyne will seek to join the ranks of the rejuvenated. The label, founded in 1921, gained prominence during the 1950s and ’60s with its brightly colored hand-knit intarsia sweaters, but […]

Run of the Mines

When a new cache of rare peach-colored imperial topaz is unearthed in the hinterlands of Brazil, the miners often set aside the best stones for Hans Stern. Although he has grown frail with age, the reserved 83-year-old patriarch of Brazil’s H. Stern jewelry house continues to wield unparalleled clout, and customarily has first pick of […]

Style: Racing Form

Simone Schedoni has firsthand experience with the fanaticism that Ferraris can engender. In his family’s Schedoni leather-goods factory in Modena, Italy (which is also home to the prancing-horse marque), a piece of stained, sueded pigskin is framed under glass and on display. The leather was removed from the driver’s seat of the Ferrari that Michael […]

FrontRunners: In A Class Of Its Own

The R in the name of the new R-Class from Mercedes-Benz (www.mbusa.com) could stand for riddle. After all, what do you call a vehicle that is 4 inches longer than a Cadillac Escalade, is equipped with full-time 4-wheel drive, seats six, handles better than an E-Class sedan, and—with a front end that appears to be scowling—looks […]

FrontRunners: Extended Legacy

Cadillac (www.cadillac.com) has gained new adherents through its recent forays into the performance-car and SUV arenas, but large, comfortable, and conservative sedans such as the DeVille long have been a mainstay of its product line. For the 2006 model year, Cadillac has modified the DeVille just enough to rename it the DTS. Restrained and formal […]

FrontRunners: Reborn Roadster

The 2006 Mazda MX-5 (www.mazdausa.com) features a redesigned body and a more commodious cockpit than its predecessor’s, but the final form leaves little question as to the car’s pedigree. Every aspect of the much-loved Miata has been improved upon, from the simple folding top to the compact 2-liter engine, which now develops 178 hp. A […]

Autos: It’s Alive

Another monster has come to life in the quiet German town of Ingolstadt, but unlike Mary Shelley’s creature, this one, Audi’s 2007 RS4, is ferocious by design. However, the RS4, which will have a base price of about $75,000 when it arrives next summer in North America, also was built from multiple sources: The body […]

2006 Private Preview: Ferrari FXX

Ferrari always has sought to pull owner passions closer to the company’s heart, which is its racing heritage. In the 1930s, Enzo himself sold Alfa Romeos from his Scuderia Ferrari stable, then tuned, transported, and maintained them for private entries. More recently, Ferrari has sponsored the Euro-American F360 Challenge for gentlemen sports car racers. It […]

2006 Private Preview: Porsche Cayman S

When the new Porsche Cayman S arrives in showrooms in the spring of 2006, it may look familiar; it will share front fenders, hood, doors, headlights, and taillights with the Boxster convertible. But while the two may have some physical similarities, as any two family members would, they will not be mistaken for twins. Most […]

2006 Private Preview: Lamborghini Gallardo SE

It takes just four seconds—the amount of time a Ferrari F430 requires to reach 60 mph—to understand why Lamborghini created a special edition of the Gallardo. In the spirit of Ferruccio Lamborghini’s eternal rivalry with Ferrari, the Gallardo SE uses shorter ratios on five of its six gears to shave two-tenths of a second from […]

Wheels: All-Wheel, All Right

Driving the 2006 Porsche 911 Carrera 4S Cabriolet is not an experience that will make you hold on to your hat, at least not literally. Surging through a narrow, curvy stretch of autobahn on the outskirts of Cologne at 140 mph with the top down and both hands clamped on the steering wheel, I have […]

Aircraft: Lighting It Up

Light sport aircraft are arriving on the market en masse, as one model after another earns certification from the Federal Aviation Administration, which created the category last year. By midsummer, a dozen new LSAs were available for purchase, and another half dozen should debut by year’s end.   The LSA class includes two subcategories: E-LSAs […]

2006 Private Preview: Aerion Supersonic Business Jet

A new supersonic era may be dawning for business flyers. Aerion Corp. of Reno, Nev., says that it expects to begin developing by next year a sleek supersonic business jet that could cruise at Mach 1.6 and zip from New York to Paris in about four hours—more than three hours faster than a Gulfstream V. […]

2006 Private Preview: Christensen 157

Christensen Shipyards has filled a niche in American yacht building since 2000 by launching a series of customized composite yachts that issue forth from a single, expandable mold at its Vancouver, Wash., facility. Christensen begins each of its 150-foot-range yachts on speculation, looks for a buyer, and then finishes the interior to suit the owner’s […]

2006 Private Preview: Palmer Johnson 150

When it was introduced in the late 1960s, the raised-pilothouse design for semidisplacement yachts was a welcome alternative to flush-deck and bridge-deck family cruisers, and by the end of the 1970s, it dominated the profile of yachts measuring 70 to 130 feet. However, more than a quarter century passed without anyone updating the design, until […]

Wings & Water: Castles in the Sky

When Phil Condit resigned from his position as CEO of the Boeing Co. amid a defense-contracting scandal at the end of 2003, he not only relinquished his job, he also gave up the home away from home—built for him by the company—that transported him on his travels. His executive perk, a Boeing Business Jet with […]

FrontRunner: Scripps’ Second Act

After purchasing the former Scripps family mansion on San Diego’s Bankers Hill, entrepreneur Gordon Hattersley III commenced a renovation that would be respectful of the historic home yet appropriate for its intended use. “We didn’t want to make this place like a museum,” says Hattersley of the Britt Scripps Inn (888.881.1991, http://www.brittscrippsinn.com), his new nine-room […]

2006 Private Preview: SeaFair’s Grand Luxe

After selling the Palm Beach, Fla., art and antiques fair that they cocreated in 1997 (now called Palm Beach! America’s International Fine Art & Antique Fair), David and Lee Ann Lester found themselves adrift at sea for 15 months. Actually, the couple was relaxing aboard Fortunata, their 94-foot Ferretti Custom Line motor yacht, and the […]

2006 Private Preview: Eric Ripert’s Blue

Eric Ripert used to be the culinary equivalent of the most desirable bachelor. Suitors, aka investors, wooed him for years, hoping to convince Ripert to open a follow-up to Le Bernardin, the Midtown Manhattan seafood stronghold that he has presided over since 1994. Ripert’s allure derives in part from his being one of only five […]

2006 Private Preview: Sotheby’s Diamonds

Sotheby’s soon will utilize its extensive experience with important diamonds in a forum other than auctions. The 261-year-old auction house is partnering with Steinmetz Diamond Group, a premier source for top-quality stones, to form Sotheby’s Diamonds. Through this enterprise, an extraordinary cache of rare stones will be available whenever the mood strikes to add to […]

Leisure: A Sommelier of One’s Own

The silver flatware and Meissen china are arrayed on a gleaming dining table festooned with more blossoms than a Brazilian rain forest. The host’s favorite chef has, perhaps with some difficulty, been retained. The menu’s five courses (after negotiations rivaling those at Malta) have been precisely selected not only to complement and contrast each other’s […]

FrontRunners: Oenophiles’ Oasis

Wine-tasting dinners have become de rigueur at resort-based restaurants, but the new Les Grands Vins de France menu at Mary Elaine’s, the acclaimed French eatery at Scottsdale’s Phoenician hotel (800.888.8234, http://www.thephoenician.com), deserves a classification of its own. Offered through spring 2006, the restaurant’s six-course tasting menu features some of the world’s most prized bottlings. Poured […]