Best of the Best 2008: Decor: Paint: Benjamin Moore

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. “In our own factory, we formulated a special, patent-pending acrylic latex to make a durable product that could last indefinitely,” explains Carl Minchew, director of color technology for Benjamin Moore. The […]

Best of the Best 2008: Decor: Appliances: Miele

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. According to Miele, these drums reduce snagging, and consequently extend the life of fabrics by a factor of four. The washing machine, introduced last year, contains eco-friendly microprocessors […]

Best of the Best 2008: Decor: Tile: Bisazza

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. The Italian company is opening showrooms in the United States and Europe to better demonstrate its signature wallpaperlike application in nontraditional settings, such as the dining room or study. “There […]

Best of the Best 2008: Decor: Indoor Furniture: Poltrona Frau

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. In recent years, Poltrona Frau has gained the attention of a wider clientele by opening more than 80 stores and collaborating with some of the most internationally recognized […]

Private Golf: The Front 10: Off the Green

FIRST IN FLIGHT Mountain Air Country Club (800.247.7791, www­ in North Carolina’s Blue Ridge Mountains is known for white-water rafting, snow sports, and its 2,875-foot private airstrip. “Unlike a commercial airport, we rarely have more than 25 or 30 planes at any one time,” says president and CEO Randy Banks. “Members probably get more disturbed […]

Best of the Best 2007: Kitchen: Gaggenau

Gaggenau Some of Gaggenau’s most recent innovations came in response to feedback from chefs and kitchen designers. Their recommendations prompted the 300-year-old German company to produce its best-selling ED 220 Combination Steam and Convection Oven and this year’s Lift Oven. The button-operated Lift Oven frees up space in the kitchen by attaching to a wall […]

Best of the Best 2007: Kitchen

Fu-Tung Cheng, owner of Cheng Design (510.849.3272, in Berkeley, Calif., initially had no plans to enter the appliance business; he did not expect to sell his restaurant-grade, kitchen-island ventilation hoods individually. Originally, they were only components of the kitchens that he designed. “We didn’t promote the hoods,” says Cheng, who also is a tai […]