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Ferrari is engaged in some dark alchemy these days. How else could the 430 Scuderia be both quicker and more drivable than the car on which it is based, the F430?
Most Porsches, even the steroid-enhanced 911 GT2, display an air of Teutonic reserve—not sterility, but a certain degree of rationality.
Oh, to be among the fortunate 500, those quick-witted souls (fewer than one-fifth of whom are Americans) sharp enough to acquire one of Alfa Romeo’s 8C Competizione coupes.
Huge and heavy, and about as green as offshore drilling, the $341,000 Bentley Brooklands (www.bentleymotors.com)
Mercedes-Benz’s new and mighty 6.3-liter V-8, built by performance division AMG, has slipped fully into the company’s product mainstream, seemingly powering everything Mercedes has to offer, from
Finally, a Jaguar that embraces the purity of its past and just might rekindle devotion to a brand following a decade of confusion and disappointments.
At the Lexus LX 570 assembly plant in Yoshiwara, Japan, master craftsmen oversee final fitting and balance procedures.
The leather-trimmed cabin of the Acura MDX (www.acura.com) is a beautiful place to be, even more so when the world outs
When Gone in Sixty Seconds—a splashy remake of a low-budget 1974 gear-grinder flick of the same name—premiered in 2000, the film reanimated one of Hollywood’s great movie cars: an overach
Among business-class conveyances, the old-fashioned van is hardly the stuff of CEO daydreams. It is more likely to evoke queasy experiences in airport parking shuttles and sightseeing tour buses.
Each TLC Icon originates as the bare chassis of a 1958–1983-era Toyota FJ40 Land Cruiser, a Japanese SUV with legendary off-roadworthiness.
To imply that the stock twin-turbo V-12 engines in the current Mercedes-Benz CL65, S65, and SL65 AMG performance models are sufficiently powered would be like saying Johann Sebastian Bach was just
Ducati first tantalized the faithful in 1964 with the Apollo prototype, a virtual Holy Grail for Ducatisti due to its 4-cylinder desmodromic powerplant.
There is a constant battle of sensibilities when creating a custom motorcycle.
It may be something of an understatement when Kawasaki describes its all-new sport-touring machine, the Concours 14, as a "Transcontinental Supersport." Able to reach near-hypersonic speeds, thank
Like the Ducati Desmosedici RR, the Suzuki B-King debuted as a prototype long before it became a production motorcycle; it originated as the Boost-King concept bike at the prestigious Tokyo Motor
A street-only adventure motorcycle, the $11,000 Triumph Tiger 1050 is an intoxicating blend of tourer and street fighter.
When Tom Ford returned to fashion last year after a three-year hiatus, he did so in a way that was completely unexpected to those who had followed his 14-year career at Gucci.
If soft, natural shoulders, unusually high-notched lapels, and suppressed waists do not make suits and sport coats from Cesare Attolini (
In 1999, watchmakers Robert Greubel and Stephen Forsey left Renaud et Papi with the vision of a new wristwatch tourbillon mechanism that would diminish the effects of gravity on accuracy.
Since its launch, Breguet’s open-works La Tradition model has stood as a paean to the original mechanical style of Abraham-Louis Breguet—from its frosted finish to revisited constructions such as
In 2005, Parisian jewelry house Van Cleef & Arpels presented its Midsummer Night’s Dream high-jewelry collection depicting impish fairies rendered in sparkling gems.
Cristina Wendt-Thévenaz, CEO of Delaneau in Geneva, brings a feminine perspective to Swiss mechanical watchmaking, an otherwise male-dominated field.
When, in 2005, jeweler Viren Bhagat acquired an exceptional 17th-??century, 70-?carat carved emerald, he envisioned the Mughal-era jewel as the centerpiece of an emerald-bead necklace.
Known for his collection of rarefied estate jewelry, Lee Siegelson of Siegelson (212.?832.?2666, www.siegelson.com) is not c
Pen maker Montblanc was founded in Hamburg, Germany, in 1906, the same year that jeweler Van Cleef & Arpels opened in Paris’ Place Vendôme.
Every detail of the Caran d’Ache 1010 (718.482.7500, www.carandache?.com)—from the tiny screw at the top of the clip to th
From the guest rooms at the Ritz-Carlton, Moscow, visitors can gaze across Red Square to the Kremlin, the city’s iconic onion domes, and other architectural remnants of this nation’s turbulent pas
Visitors arrive at the Peninsula Tokyo (+81.3.6270.2888, www.peninsula.com) in green Rolls-Royce Phantoms, the Hong
Robb Report first covered the Mandarin Oriental Riviera Maya in an October 2004 story that previewed the property’s "fall 2005" grand opening.
The Carlton Hotel (+41.81.836. 70.00, www.carlton-stmoritz.ch), a nearly century-old institution in St.
A former gravel quarry near Tacoma, Wash., is not the first place one would expect to find the world’s top new golf course.
Canadian designer Doug Carrick took both the high road and the low road when building the Carrick at Cameron House (+44.1389.755.565,
In 2007, exclusive resorts opened 75 new residences for its members, who now have access to more than 350 homes in 35 locations.
Since its august 2006 merger with DreamCatcher Retreats and its acquisition of Leading Residences of the World four months later, Quintess has grown from 280 members and 49 homes to more than 425
At this time last year, Solstice confirmed plans to add two new homes to its eight-property portfolio.
The golf course at Los Cabos’ 520-acre El Dorado Golf & Beach Club is a tough act to follow.
Nestled on the eastern shore of Lake Keowee in the Blue Ridge Mountains of South Carolina is the Cliffs at Keowee Springs (866.435.5127,
One can say little about Château Cheval Blanc that has not been said already by someone, somewhere, sometime.
By the time I returned from two weeks in Argentina in March of this year, I had become firmly convinced that this country on the east side of the Andes is currently the best place on the planet fo
The estate that would become Villa Russiz was Italy’s most forward-looking when it was built in 1869 by French count Théodore de La Tour.
For a champagne lover, witnessing the birth of a new tête de cuvée elicits an excitement on par with that which an astronomer experiences upon discovering a new comet.
The legendary Dom Pérignon thought he was drinking stars when he first tasted sparkling wine, and Champagne lovers have echoed his joy with each new release of Moët & Chandon’s prestige cuvée.
If intelligence is the unique ability to recognize in seeming randomness meaningful patterns not readily apparent to others—relationships, connections between objects and ideas—then Bill Harlan is
Art, as much as agriculture, furnished the inspiration for Amuse Bouche, a Pomerol-style wine from Napa Valley produced by legendary winemaker Heidi Barrett, formerly of Screaming Eagle.
"The japanese sense of style is the accumulation of long and seriously beautiful aesthetic thought," writes Truman Capote in his brief essay "Style: and the Japanese." "Although . . .
Fine winemaking in Washington State began in earnest with Chateau Ste. Michelle, which owns the oldest vineyards in the Columbia Valley, now a significant wine destination.
The protestant Delamain family fled the Huguenot persecution in 17th-century France and began an illustrious career of public service in the British Isles, chiefly in Ireland, under the protection
Absolut vodka has become a modern classic, thanks not only to its famous and relentlessly inventive ad campaign but also to its smooth, clean, all-natural flavors.
If young spirits entrepreneur John Cooper has his finger on the pulse of the liqueur category, it’s because he has it in his genes.
This year’s best of the best cigar-tasting event took place at the Shave of Beverly Hills, a modern echo of the elegant tonsorial parlors of Old Bond Street.
Although zino cigars are typically made in Honduras, the Platinum Scepter Series is handcrafted by Davidoff master blender Hendrik Kelner in his Tabadom factory in the Dominican Republic.
From certain tables in Le Jules Verne, if you are seated facing the right direction and the weather is clear, you can spot the Arc de Triomphe, the Louvre, Les Invalides (with Napoléon’s tomb),
Mathias Dahlgren (+46.8.679.35.84, www.mdghs.com), which opened in May 2007 in Stockholm’s Grand Hotel, is in fact two restauran
An all-in-one tabletop system’s sound might be relatively feeble, but its simplicity can be preferable to the complexity of separate audio components.
Although the ipod has made music more accessible than ever, the inexpensive audio systems it has spawned have earned no accolades.
When German cabinetmaker Poggenpohl entered the U.S. market more than 30 years ago, Americans did not immediately embrace its contemporary European kitchen designs.
Although custom cabinetry for kitchens, libraries, and living rooms is still the primary business of the family-owned Thomas Riley Artisans’ Guild, growing demand for quality closets prompted the
The secret behind German appliance brand Miele’s Honeycomb Care "super large capacity" washer and dryer is a pair of patented stainless-steel drums, each resembling a bee’s honeycomb.
"There’s nothing I hate more than a gorgeous country home with a beautiful yard that someone has ruined with plastic furniture," says renowned designer Philippe Starck.
When the time came to select a name for his company’s newest and most luxurious bedding collection, Paul Hooker, president and owner of Sferra, a 116-?year-old Italian linen company, forwent the t
Few consider paint a luxury, but Aura, Benjamin Moore’s new line of high-performance interior paint, may change a few minds—and turn a few heads.
Ferrari drivers have long enjoyed the craftsmanship and comfort of Poltrona Frau, the Tolentino, Italy–based company whose supple leather lines the interiors of the iconic Italian automobiles.
Long known for its opulent and contemporary twists on the ancient art of mosaics, Bisazza is now expanding its product line beyond kitchens and bathrooms.
Maya Romanoff created his first custom mural in 2003, when architect David Rockwell asked him to make a glass-beaded geisha on the walls of New York’s Geisha restaurant.
Peter Finer is a different sort of gun nut.
Furniture usually plays only a supporting role at Senger Bamberg Kunsthandel (+49.951.54030, www.senger-bamberg.de); it
One of the details that distinguishes the 184-foot sailing yacht Selene is fairly invisible—intentionally so.
The Royal Huisman Meteor (+31.?527.24.3131, www.royalhuisman?.com), a 169-foot gaff schooner, features classic design in
The proprietors of the 125-foot Hakvoort Perle Bleue (+31.299.651403, www.hakvoort.com) previously owned the 148-foot Hakvoor
The 171-foot Deniki is the first yacht in the new 171 Limited Editions series from Holland’s Amels yard.
The 141-foot, $33 million Emerald Star is hull number one in the CRN 43-Meter Series (+39.71.
The 164-foot Trinity motor yacht Mine Games is making a splash in more ways than one in the Mediterranean this summer. As the yacht impresses viewers along the Côte d’Azur, its captain, J.D.
Go-anywhere, do-anything, expedition-style motor yachts are available for charter, but few cruise beyond the Mediterranean and Caribbean seas.
With its shiny silver hull and space-age helm chair, the Riva 63' Vertigo is a sleek creature indeed.
When boatbuilders use the term semicustom, they generally refer to a choice of interior decor options and possibly some predetermined layouts.
The Swiss-made Pilatus PC-12 turboprop is made to tackle hard work in the world’s more remote places.
The "S" in the name of the new Acclaim from Mooney Airplane refers to the craft’s most distinguishing attribute: speed.
Embraer’s Phenom 100 is often called a very light jet. But if this classification is correct, then the company has produced the most spacious VLJ yet.
The XLS jet, Cessna’s best-selling model, has received an impressive update.
The Hawker 4000 is Hawker Beechcraft’s biggest, fastest jet yet.
The Dassault Falcon 7X (201.?440.6700, www.dassaultfalcon.com) flies faster, farther, and higher than any of Dassault’s
In the past 24 years, Richard Santulli has built the world’s second-largest airline, after American—and it consists entirely of private jets.
Beauty. A recent dinner party at a private home in the Los Angeles suburb of Brentwood brought me to a mildly disturbing observation on this subject.
Senior editor Sheila Gibson Stoodley, who was in charge of this year’s dining and antiques sections, has been an integral part of the Best of the Best issue for more than a decade and has seen it
The 223-foot motor yacht Kismet, from the Lürssen Yachts shipyard in Germany, holds far more than the standard main salon and guest-cabin layout: Her spaces include a disco, a steam room, a massag
If removing the roof of a car increases your daily vitamin D intake, it usually does so at the cost of performance.
When Sean Connery tore up a few European switchbacks in a DB5 in 1964’s Goldfinger, the Aston Martin brand became synonymous with style.
Vincent Girardin’s $2.8 million, 67,000-square-foot winemaking facility in Meursault, completed just six years ago, is one of the most contemporary in Burgundy.
Since 1911, when Kansas farmer Clyde Cessna built a wood-and-fabric airplane and flew it from the Mississippi River to the Rockies—an aviation first—the company that he founded has built some of t
In a cavernous, dimly lit room in an office building in Weymouth, Mass., dozens of people stare at a map projected on a bare wall.
Kenny Dichter estimates that he and his partner, Jesse Itzler, were kicked out of Richard Santulli’s office five or six times before the NetJets CEO agreed to let them sell hourly access to his fl
The British monarch who ruled the largest empire in history would no doubt be pleased by the new $522 million ocean liner that the fabled Cunard Line recently christened after her.