The New 800-Horsepower American Roadster

Overview

First-ever test drive of Iconic Motors' $600,000 GTR. Plus, 25 top releases from Burgundy, Carroll Shelby's GT500KR Mustang, Parmigiani's Maritime watch collection. Also, water safaris: crusing the Peruvian Amazon in high style.

From This Issue

Contributors: Thrill Machines

As he researched this month’s cover story on the Iconic GTR (“American Ideal,” page 74), automotive writer Ezra Dyer encountered a few bumps in the road. The 800 hp concept car, which recalls classic roadsters of the 1950s and ’60s, had been damaged during transport while making the rounds on the car-show circuit. Subsequently it […]

From the Editors: Remembering Mr. Mondavi

The word icon is often used but seldom is it meaningful. Few people transcend the particulars of their individual identities to embody something much greater than themselves. In the course of my career, I have met my share of prominent and impressive personages. But I have met only one genuine icon. My first meeting with […]

Romanesque Revival

Long known as a summer retreat, the South of France has provided an ideal setting for some of Europe’s most prominent individuals to indulge their wildest fantasies. Ernesta Stern, for example, was a rather unusual member of an influential European banking family. In the late 19th century she built this home—with Romanesque, Gothic, and Byzantine […]

Journeys: Cruise Control

The turquoise flashes of a blue morpho’s wings appear like a beacon as the butterfly darts and weaves in front of our skiff on the narrow, black-water Yanallpa River in northeastern Peru. Microscopic scales on the top of the insect’s wings, which can span as much as 8 inches, reflect an iridescent blue light, while […]

The Best of Burgundy

Each November, an extraordinary event takes place in the town of Beaune, France. This event—an auction—has deep roots in the region; it benefits the Hospices de Beaune, a charitable foundation established in 1443 by Chancellor Nicolas Rolin of Burgundy to maintain the Hôtel-Dieu, a magnificent 15th-century hospital complete with Gothic spires and a colorfully tiled […]

Bird Nests: Top Choppers

There are many excellent helicopters that operate successfully from the decks of yachts. Yet there are a select few models that experts recommend over all others, in part because the companies that make them have long histories of working with ship builders in both commercial and military environments, and because the models are easy to […]

Bird Nests

Like most aviation consultants, James Wakeford tells lots of stories about things that have gone wrong. He recalls a certain yacht crew that never properly flushed the onboard helicopter’s engines of corrosive salt water during three months at sea, something they should have been doing daily: “We had to tell the captain that they had […]

Home: Going to the Mattresses

Two years ago, Hästens, the Swedish bedding company known for blue-checkered mattresses filled with horsehair, successfully introduced Vividus, the world’s first $50,000 mattress. Since then, bed makers have been tossing and turning over ways to justify their own similarly high-priced sleep systems. Two of the most extravagant examples are Magniflex’s $75,000 Platinum mattress, launched this […]

Antiques: Spin Doctor

Jalal Aro places a wax cylinder onto one of the record players in his Paris shop and invites his guest to listen. The music, a violin solo, sounds clear—surprisingly so, considering that the cylinder was made in 1912 and that the player is a circa-1918 model designed by Thomas Edison. “If the cylinder is perfect […]

Collectibles: Passing the Torch

Craig Perlow, a collector and dealer of Olympic memorabilia, stores his entire collection in his two-bedroom townhouse in Norcross, Ga., a suburb of Atlanta. His sellable inventory is in the basement, while his pins and badges are in boxes and jewelry cases. Important documents, including a handwritten letter from Pierre de Coubertin, the principal founder […]

Sport: High-Wire Action

Our group of a dozen hikers huddles in a circle, shoulders hunched, hands clutching our backpack straps. Loose pebbles scatter on the ground around our feet, and Gore-Tex jackets flatten as the blades of our helicopter accelerate. At our guide Bernard’s signal, we rush into the chopper, which ascends quickly toward a W-shaped mountain formation […]

Travel: Flight of Fancy

Shortly after takeoff, on a demonstration flight for travel agents and a handful of writers, the passenger cabin filled with a customary sound of first-class travel: the voices of flight attendants proffering hors d’oeuvres and cocktails as they moved through the aisle. This was about the time when normally I would open a book, switch […]

Golf: Kidd’s Club

David McLay Kidd waves his hand toward the beach just beyond the dunes that border the 16th hole at Scotland’s Machrihanish Dunes. “When I was a child we would come down here in the summer, and I would run on that beach and hide in those dunes,” says Kidd, a golf course architect whose portfolio […]

Wardrobe: Three Easy Pieces

When d’Avenza relaunched its illustrious label this year after more than a decade’s absence from U.S. stores, the upscale Italian suitmaker did so with just three jacket styles: the British Warm, the Forte, and the Easy Chic. Given that d’Avenza was among the most successful Italian clothiers in the 1960s and ’70s, the company chose […]

Spirits: Back in Black

In the game of high-priced whiskies, as in that of high-stakes poker, four of a kind always beats three. Bowmore trumps an earlier winning hand with this summer’s introduction of the long-anticipated Black Bowmore 42-year-old single-malt Scotch whisky, from a rare batch that also yielded the trio that sold for $18,000 at the first spirits […]

Boating: Mahogany Dreams

At the Crosby Yacht Yard on Cape Cod, Mass., berthed not far from John F. Kennedy’s wooden sloop, Victura, lies a Windsor Craft 36, an expertly crafted mahogany yacht with a classic Down East hull shape. The joinery throughout the boat is virtually flawless, with curves that arc through the cabin and gaps between the […]

Autos: Royal Treatment

Forty years ago, former racecar driver Carroll Shelby caught wind that General Motors was just weeks away from unveiling a King of the Road edition of the Chevrolet Corvette. “The brochures were already printed,” recalls Shelby, whose Cobra competed with the Corvette both on the track and in dealer showrooms. “I immediately called my attorney […]

American Ideal

The American automotive landscape is littered with the broken dreams of aspiring carmakers. As the joke goes, the best way to make a small fortune in the car industry is to start with a large one. Even among those entrepreneurs who survive step one—building a prototype that stimulates consumer interest—few ever make a successful transition […]

Watches: Maritime Marriage

Within minutes of meeting at the Cannes International Boat Show in September 2006, executives from Swiss watch manufacturer Parmigiani Fleurier and Italian yacht builder Pershing felt an affinity that quickly bloomed into a partnership. Dressed in shorts and a T-shirt, Pershing’s president, Tilli Antonelli, surprised Jean-Marc Jacot, Parmigiani’s CEO, with his casual demeanor. “He was […]