Ultimate Villa Vacations


Private travel issue: Bali, Miami, Greece, St. Barts, Napa Valley & more. Plus, Africa by private jet, Audi's new R8 V-12 diesel and Britain's watchmaking boom.

From This Issue

Wardrobe: Uncompromising Color

Domenico Vacca is a colorful individual: When he opened his signature store next door to Cipriani in Manhattan in May 2002, he aimed to offer American men the opportunity to own the same handmade, form-fitting suits and fluorescent-colored sportswear that have defined Italian style for decades. Unlike other U.S. retailers, who dilute the Italian idiom […]

Contributors: Time Travel

Those who follow the watch world closely may have noticed the reemergence of several of the British masters, among them Dent and Arnold & Son. In “Excellence Revisited” (page 78), American conceptual artist and art critic Jonathon Keats explores the renaissance of long-moribund British watchmaking brands and the horological traditions that made them great. “There’s […]

From the Editors: Worldly Retreats

Tyrants and tycoons must also have their hideaways. Those who run the world, after all, must occasionally have their vacations from it. As this month’s cover story (“Ultimate Villa Vacations,” page 89) reminds us, a villa in the country furnishes the ideal means by which those in public life may live, if only briefly, within […]

Aviation: Bella Copters

For very practical reasons, aircraft interiors are made of light, durable materials that happen to be rather dull and utilitarian. As part of an ongoing collaboration with Aero Toy Store (ATS), an aviation company based in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., legendary Italian design firm Pininfarina rejects the practical in favor of something much more fun. In […]

Boating: Water Rocket

During family gatherings at his hilltop vacation home on the Caribbean island of Saint Martin, Stew Leonard, a 78-year-old Connecticut businessman, likes to take his guests boating. With four children and 13 grandchildren who, with assorted spouses, form a tribe of 23, Leonard needs a yacht to accommodate everyone. But large yachts have one drawback: […]

Autos: The Diesel Initiative

In recent years, no marque has won more Le Mans–series endurance races than Audi. The company also has successfully translated those weekend wins into sales with a production version of its Le Mans racecar. The R8 made the press swoon—it is Robb Report’s current Car of the Year and has received numerous other accolades—and demand […]

Golf: Hide and Sleek

Considering all his outward reverence for tradition and history, today’s golfer has few practical throwback options on the course. Yes, he can walk 18 holes, hire a caddie, wear a Hogan cap, or even attach kilties to his shoes. But rare is the gentleman who would forsake his Pro V1 for a Haskell or his […]

Travel: Liquid Assets

For his love of water, not wine, Diogo Vaz Guedes, founder of the Aquapura hotel group, selected Portugal’s Douro River Valley as the location for his firm’s first resort. Vaz Guedes believes water is essential for relaxation, and he plans to build hotels in settings where a river, lake, or ocean defines the vacation experience. […]

Wine: A Landmark Krug

The city of Reims has a heart of stone: its cathedral. This imposing structure for centuries received the ascending French kings, whose heads, by tradition, were crowned beneath its vast vaults. Today, of course, the retinues that pass under its rose windows are of the touristic rather than the royal kind, but the life’s blood […]

Dining: Altered Plates

More than just the menu is seasonal at Park Avenue Summer; the entire restaurant changes with the calendar. Since opening the Midtown Manhattan establishment a year ago, co-owner Michael Stillman has closed it for two days every three months and altered everything he and a crew of about 20 workers could: the menu; the servers’ […]

Jewelry: Pearl Visions

Last December, at Sotheby’s Magnificent Jewels sale in New York, the auctioneer’s gavel came down on an astonishing bid of $82,000 for a pair of earrings made of baroque keshi pearls and diamonds, whose estimated value had been $18,000 to $22,000. Nothing about the relatively classic earrings, created by a little-known designer named Donna Vock, […]

Art: Far East Meets Upper East Side

Ultimately, the ceramics simply became too big. For more than 30 years, Joan Mirviss’ nine-room, pre–World War II apartment in Midtown Manhattan had served both as her home and as the Joan B Mirviss gallery of Japanese art. But last year she concluded that her business, specifically her inventory of contemporary ceramics, had outgrown the […]

Home: Taking It Outside

Bobby Dekeyser’s career in professional soccer ended in 1990 when, during a heated match, someone kicked him in the face—hard—with a cleated shoe. From his hospital bed, the injured goalie for Germany’s Bayern Munich team began sketching designs that would lay the groundwork for a new career as the founder of Dedon, one of the […]

Excellence Revisited

Britannia ruled the waves thanks to the finely jeweled bearings of the marine chronometer. This groundbreaking instrument, which London clockmaker John Harrison perfected in 1764 after 30 years of experimentation, allowed navigators to calculate accurately their longitudinal positions at sea. At that time, no other mechanism could guide navigation with such accuracy, and no nation […]

Ultimate Villa Vacations: Room and Boards

Four friends travel from Los Angeles to Bali, Indonesia, for a 10-day surfing trip. Providers. Air travel by New World Jet Corp. (201.288.8400, http://www.jetaviation.com) and Air Bali (www.airbali.com); villa developed by Elite Havens Group (+62.361.731.074, http://www.elitehavensbali.com) and available through BHM Villas (+62.361.730.668, http://www.bhmvillas.com). Getting There. A limousine sent by New ?World Jet Corp., the U.S. […]

Ultimate Villa Vacations: Taste of Napa

Three couples travel from New York City to St. Helena, Calif., for a weeklong culinary vacation in wine country. Providers. Air travel by Bombardier Flexjet (972.720.2725, http://www.flexjet.com); villa available through BeautifulPlaces (707.996.0266, http://www.beautiful-places.com). Getting There. A stretch limo sent by Bom­bardier Flexjet—a fractional and flight-card provider with a fleet of Bombardier business jets—carries the travelers […]

Ultimate Villa Vacations: One for the Generations

An extended family—two grandparents, three couples, and four young children—travels from Chicago to Corfu, Greece, their base for a two-week yachting trip in the Greek islands. Providers. Air travel by Sentient Flight Group (781.763.0380, http://www.sentientflight.com); yacht charter by Camper & Nicholsons International (954.524.4250, http://www.cnconnect.com); villa available through Five Star Greece Ltd. (+44.20.8422.4885, http://www.fivestargreece.com). Getting There. […]

Ultimate Villa Vacations: Powder Rooms

Two families—four adults and three children—plus a nanny travel from Boston to Deer Valley, Utah, for a ski vacation. Providers. Air travel by XOJet (650.594.6300, http://www.xojet.com); villa available through Luxury Retreats (514.393.8844, http://www.luxuryretreats.com). Getting There. A stretch limo sent by XOJet—a private-aviation firm that combines a fractional-type business model with a charter operation—takes the families […]

Ultimate Villa Vacations: Caribbean Combo

A family of four from Greenwich, Conn., travels to the French West Indies island of St. Barts for a two-week vacation on land and at sea. Providers. Air travel by Marquis Jet (212.499.3790, http://www.marquisjet.com); yacht charter by Burgess Yachts (+44.20.7766.4300, http://www.burgessyachts.com); villa available through Wimco (401.849.8012, http://www.wimco.com). Getting There. “For this trip, we suggest the […]

Ultimate Villa Vacations: Wild Kingdom

Two families—four adults and five children—travel from Washington, D.C., to Costa Rica for a two-week eco-adventure and yachting retreat. Providers. Air travel by CitationShares (203.861.9667, http://www.citationshares.com); ?yacht charter by Edmiston & Co. (+44.20.7495.5151, http://www.edmistoncompany.com); villa available through LaCure Villas (416.968.2374, http://www.lacurevillas.com). Getting There. A stretch limo sent by flight-card provider CitationShares takes the families to […]

Lofty Advice

Aviation consultants are a fairly new breed. Bill Quinn, a consultant based in Portsmouth, N.H., remembers that just a generation ago, people rarely used them. “Back then, a consultant was someone who was unemployed,” he observes wryly. “When a CEO decided to buy an airplane, he hired a pilot and said, ?‘Go buy an airplane!’ […]

Wheels: Ballroom Blitzkrieg

Mercedes-Benz never snoozes. When not adding to a seemingly endless and ever-morphing inventory of braw and often brutally powerful motorcars, it concentrates its energy on nipping and tucking the collection from the prior year. This summer, the highly successful CL and the sensual CLS, with barely a frown line or age wrinkle between them, will […]

Leisure: Ashes to Ashtons

The only way to get from Nicaragua’s capital of Managua to the town of Estelí, the production center of the country’s cigar industry, is to drive northward along the twisting, two-lane CA-1, the Central American stretch of the Pan-American Highway. Since the road was repaved following Hurricane Mitch, which ravaged the region in 1998, the […]

Sport of Kings: Making the Rounds in Morocco

Golf first came to Morocco in 1914, when Sultan Abdelaziz, who had ruled the country from 1894 to 1908, commissioned a pair of British golf architects, Henry Cotton and Frank Pennink, to design an 18-hole course at the foot of the Rif Mountains in Tangier. Neither designer saw the course completed, though, as Morocco was […]

Ultimate Villa Vacations: Showtime

A couple travels from Houston to Miami for a weeklong shopping and yachting trip during the annual Art Basel Miami Beach show in December. Providers. Air travel by Flight Options (877.?703.2348, http://www.flightoptions.com); yacht charter by Fraser Yachts Worldwide (954.463.0600, http://www.fraser?yachts.com); villa available through Villazzo (305.777.0146, www??.villazzo.com). Getting There. A sedan sent by private-aviation firm Flight […]

Journey to the Center of the Earth

Each time the king pauses for a breath, the man next to him says “jhoom” in a voice that could make Barry White sound like a soprano. The king’s own tones are soft and thoughtful, punctuated by gestures from his hands, both of which are adorned with enormous rings depicting two crocodiles that share the […]

Journeys: Sport of Kings

However strange and exotic the setting may be to Westerners, Morocco holds few if any untoward surprises for most golfers. The rules and customs—written and unwritten—follow the American paradigm. And though it is always best to make arrangements in advance, club managers will go out of their way to accommodate visit­ing Americans who drop in […]