A new social phenomenon is rising on the Lower East Side and more and more people want to be a part of it – Magnises, a kind of social club for the aspiring entrepreneurial class. Of course, there is a catch. Not just ‘anyone’ can join. Using the infamous black American Express Card as an inspiration and model, Magnises transfers the same approach to attract aspirational 20-somethings who want the cachet of the real thing, but can’t afford it.
The original idea behind Magnises is to provide millennials with a more accessible (but still costly) version of the invite-only American Express Centurion card—or the “black card”—that carries a five-thousand-dollar initiation fee, twenty-five hundred dollars in annual dues, and a reported quarter-million-dollar annual spending limit. And in a way it is working as the alternative has become “the hot new way to spend money among NYC’s young elite”.
Technically, it is not so much a credit card, but rather a payment method since is simply takes the credit or debit card the member already uses and activates it to the metal Magnises card through the data on the magnetic strip. At the time of its launch the service was only intended for and aimed at New Yorkers, trying to make the most of life in the city. However, the start-up does plan to venture into other cities in the near future.
With an annual fee of $250, the card achieves its goal of being more attainable for 21-to-29 year olds. The perks of the card are constantly increasing with Magnises currently having 50 memberships with the end goal of enhancing the members’ social life in general. There is a wide variety of services to choose from – from private trainers in big gyms like David Barton to exclusive treatment in restaurants like La Esquina, Arlington Club, Omar’s, bars and nightclubs.
The clubhouse on Greenwich Avenue in the West Village serves as a home base for members, and provides a secluded and convenient place for discussions, casual conversations and meetings.
Displaying feminine watchmaking in its finest, the exceptional Panthère timepieces explore the beauty and power of the feline figure through mesmerizing diamond and enamel spot patterns. A true representation of independence and the untameable feminine spirit, no other timepieces even come close to reflecting a woman’s mysterious nature and gracious physique so well as evidenced by the stand-out Panthère Divine de Cartier piece – perfectly executed in in 18ct white gold, diamonds and enamel.
The large model Tortue exhibits an exquisite mosaic panther crafted onto an 18ct rose-gold dial, merging jewellery and timepiece into one sublime creation. This model is produced in a limited edition of 30 individually numbered pieces and boasts a manual winding movement. Another striking model is the damascened Rotonde de Cartier, which displays a more ferocious feline design complemented with a brown alligator strap and fashioned from 18ct white and 22ct yellow gold.
All models in the exhibition are adorned with playful and elegant animal figures, which give them a rather unusual, albeit eye-catching, allure. The sumptuous timepieces are generously embellished with diamonds, 18k yellow and white gold, black onyx and mother-of-pearl. A custom-designed, self-winding 9603 MC calibre mechanism helps recreate the elegant and ever-so-gracious movement of the panther on the dial with the animal “prowling” around the dial.
A coffee-table book for £120 details Cartier’s fascination with recreating Nature’s finest through precious stones and materials. 300 colour illustrations display the maison’s most striking creations.
When every corner of the world is an available option and money is no issue, there are quite a few places that are worth visiting. Private tropical retreats, wild safaris, lush condominium or ocean exploration – you name it, it’s all just a charter flight away.
The Hamptons’ Billionaire Lane
A convenient drive-away from New York, the Hamptons has long been favoured amongst the rich as a quick getaway from the bustling city. There is something very appealing about a second holiday home surrounded by other lush estates in a never-ending demonstration of wealth and stature.
Beautiful coastal line and ancient structures give this place an irresistible allure that draws billionaires from all over the world. The unique combination of modern luxury and well-preserved history and nature makes it ideal for people who can afford it.
The notoriously private islands may scare away the general public with stories of unexplained disappearances and strange occurrences, but for the rich – this is just an added benefit to the tropical flora and beautiful scenery.
Cottar’s 1920s Camp
Cottar’s 1920s Camp’s is as good as any safari experience can get. The exclusive resort in Kenya boasts open-plan cottages that let man and nature live as one and achieve pure harmony. Spectacular sights and top-notch service make this an unforgettable experience.
The small private island boasts a number of attractions, such as a drive-in movie theatre, an arcade, a laser tag arena, and a pirate’s treasure hunt with an actual treasure. Of course, it will send guests back $20,000, but given the retreat’s exclusivity – it is something definitely worth it.
Its untamed, derelict beauty has inspired many folk tales and movies, so it’s not surprising that so many billionaires flock to rural Ireland in search of pristine tranquillity and relaxation. Remote harbour villages add a certain poetic charm to the trip with poet David Wythe being your personal guide, if you can afford it.
Superyachts have long been favoured by the rich for the privacy they provide and this one exceeds all expectations. The ultimate in relaxation and privacy as it travels the open ocean; it comes with a 3D-theater, a stage and dance floor. Summer charter rates start at €900,000 per week.
Starting at £720 a night, The Lanesborough is an opulent recreation of the regal glamour of 18th-century Regency London. Overlooking the quiet and pristine Hyde Park Corner, it is truly no ordinary hotel in terms of ambiance, luxury and provided services to its distinct guests.
The hotel in itself comprises of 93 guest rooms and suits with the Royal Suit alone consisting of seven bedrooms, seven bathrooms, two living rooms and a dining room – all superbly furnished to an unparalleled standard of luxury and elegance. It is unmatched in privacy and comfort, but it comes at £31,200 a night.
Paintings by Sir Joshua Reynolds grace the limestone corridor and the staff is ever-present without being intruding on the guests’ privacy and quality time. Apart from its exquisite standard of accommodation, the hotel is famous for possessing the most prominent 18th-century painting collection in the world outside any gallery.
Built as a private house by Viscount Lanesborough in 1719, in present day the hotel embodies a world of wealth and wonder with a décor that will surely satisfy the most discriminating of tastes. Recently undergoing a 18-month refurbishment, the classic allure of the antiquities and furnishings has been beautifully preserved and enhanced. Embroiderers, stencillers, trompe l’oeil experts and specialists in working with 23¼ carat gold leaf came together to reimagine the decadent beauty of the building and spared no effort in ensuring every element is of the highest quality.
Every guest has three staff persons to guarantee service is impeccable. The rooms come with a set of two plasma TVs and two tablets that control the light, temperature, the curtains and call the staff. Apart from that, all other furnishings are lovely anitique-y with giant canopied beds, marble bathrooms, huge chandelier, chintz sofa and lacquered chairs.
The restaurant is Michelin-quality and there is a £65 Royal breakfast adorned with pieces of edible gold leaves.
The luxurious hotel chain Four Seasons has announced plans to open a new location in the exotic destination of Seoul. The new 5-star paradise will be located in the heart of the faraway county, in the bustling city of Gwanghwamun. The brand new building will combine clean, modern aesthetic with traditional Korean motifs for a unique experience in style and comfort.
Contemporary in design, the architecture of the new location will captivate with a blend of Asian motifs and modern luxury, and will feature 317 superbly furnished rooms with spectacular views of the surrounding scenery. Accent in every room will be the brand’s customizable bed, which is available with a plush, signature, or firm mattress topper. In addition to the lavish design guests will be treated to an array of services that offer complete relaxation and unparalleled comfort – soothing Korean SPA procedures with sauna and massage, an executive club lounge, indoor golf facilities, indoor swimming pools, state-of-the-art gym and exquisite restaurants that serves local and international delicacies.
All rooms are equipped with Wi-Fi, large flat-screen TVs, and can even be fitted with a Playstation or Xbox upon request. The seven restaurants and bars cover a wide array of cuisines – Italian, Japanese, Korean and more.
The indoor golf experience boasts simulators with realistic 3-D renditions of some of the world’s best-known courses for superb entertainment. State-of-the-art Korean SPA provides comfort and relaxation through traditional massage techniques and an authentic Korean sauna.
The timing of the opening of the new Four Seasons can’t be better with the upcoming 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang expected to attract around 2 million tourists to the neighbouring city. Gwanghwamun provides plenty of amenities as well as a bustling nightlife for those who wish to experience the vibe of Korean culture in its true form.
To make the experience even more special, guests can opt for the private jet service offered by the brand that will make the journey every bit as enjoyable as it should be.
Continuing last week’s post World’s most expensive beverages – part 1, we are going to explore the world of sublime and ultra-expensive drinks that the real of rich people has to offer. Most of these spirits are limited editions and very hard to obtain, which makes them all the more valuable as a liquor’s quality is not dependent only on its taste and texture, but rather attainability.
Dalmore 62 – $215,000
With only 12 bottles having been produces, this exclusive liquor is truly a treat for the super-rich. Of course, the basis for the whiskey’s staggering price is its rarity, albeit the taste and quality of texture are still pretty impressive. Rightfully called “pure liquid gold”, the liquor is poured in a hand-blown crystal decanter with the iconic, 12-pointed platinum stag head. What’s even more – Dalmore is a “fantastic investment” since its value has risen tenfold to £100,000 from the time it was first released in 2002.
Diva Vodka – $1,000,000
A fantastic experiment in creativity has produced this bold and one-of-a-kind vodka – triple filtered, through ice, Nordic birch charcoal, and finally through sand containing precious gems. And coming in contact with precious stones skyrockets the value of a beverage always. The bottle that holds the unique spirit is equally fascinating and decorated with real Swarovski crystals. It’s truly the world’s most extravagant and glamorous vodka with unique taste and qualities – the result of a meticulous distilling process.
Henri IV Dudognon Heritage Cognac Grande Champagne – $2,000,000
Cognac fit for nobility – this is the most fitting description for Henri IV Dudognon Heritage Cognac Grande Champagne. Aged for 100 years, the liquor comes in a bottle that has been dipped in 24-carat gold and sterling platinum and embellished with 6,500 diamonds.
Tequila Ley .925 – $3,500,000 (featured picture above)
The unique production process employs specific distilling techniques that make this tequila into a true nectar of the gods. Produced by the same company behind Henri IV Dudognon Heritage Cognac Grande Champagne, it comes in its own fabulous bottle decorated with diamonds.
Alcohol is a delight that marks the heyday of material splendour and, if the proper refined tastes and production techniques are used, can turn into a real treat for the senses. Naturally, the landscape of the modern alcohol industry has undergone some changes and a few beverages tower above the rest with quality, unparalleled texture and taste – a true indulgence reserved for the ultra-wealthy.
Vieille Bon Secours Ale – $1,200
The 10-yearold Belgian beer is produced by la Brasserie Caulier in a family-owned and operated brewery that safeguards religiously its traditions in ale-making. The hefty price tag is for 12 litres of the savoury beer that’s been aged for 10 years to accomplish that anise and toffee favour. The alcohol percentage is 8%, which is pretty strong for ale.
The Winston Cocktail – $14,000
A single cocktail so spectacular it combines some of the world’s most exclusive and expensive blends of liquor for sublime taste and texture – Cognac Croizet 1858 Cuvee Leonie, Grand Marnier Quintessence, Chartreuse Viellissement Exceptionellement Prolongé, and a hint of Angostura Bitters. It is elegant, refined and subtly delicious – a true drink for executives.
Legacy by Angostura – $25,000
The rum mixture is so special mainly for its political significance – it was crafted specifically to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Trinidad and Tobago’s independence. Each rum comes in a case and crystal decanter, designed specifically by Asprey’s of London to complement the rich and delicate mixture of several rums all aged for at least 17 years.
Château d’Yquem – $130,000
With a history of over 300 years in wine production, the wine producer in the Bordeaux region of France has developed certain techniques that take wine-making one step beyond the stuff that dreams are made of. This incredibly rare vintage is often described as ‘drinking liquified crème brûlée’.
The latest addition to the LV range – the Tambour Heures du Monde watch – is a must-have accessory for the avid traveller or businessman. The timepiece transcends 24 time zones and comes with an aggressive, sophisticated and elegant design that will appeal to the contemporary gentleman.
Its unique asymmetrical face is wrapped in a steel case and an anti-reflective sapphire glass casing. The satin-finished grey dial features an off-centre subdial decorated with a map of the globe. Additionally, there abbreviations of the names of 24 cities corresponding to different time zones, which are subtle but legible in white and yellow. Day and night are differentiated in white and grey respectively and an aperture positioned to the right of the watch’s date window points to the current hour in the tracked time zone.
A convenient feature allows for a second time zone to be set via a pusher on the watch’s steel case. There is also a small corrector that allows for compensation of daylight-saving adjustments. The $9,450-watch boasts a clean, refined and masculine design with an observable rotor engraved with the iconic LV logo.
The alligator strap complements the severe but sophisticated layout of the case. Subtle yellow stitching adds a note of whimsy and edge to the rigid design. In terms of mechanics – the infamous LV 101 Automatic calibre has been incorporated for unparalleled precision. The watch exhibits a 40-hour power reserve as well as 50m water resistance, bringing together quality, convenience and luxury.
The GMT function of the Tambour Heures du Monde watch emphasises the origin of the brand as a travel-trunk manufacturer. It is an exceptional timepiece that encompasses the necessities of a watch of its calibre as well as contemporary elegance and refined class – a true statement accessory for the modern man.
The DB10 was debuted by Aston Martin as the new car built exclusively for the upcoming Spectre film of the James on franchise. This marks the continuation of a 50-yearlong partnership that has seen the famous luxurious automobile brand produce some of its most emblematic vehicles.
Production will be strictly limited to 10 cars and all will be constructed at the Aston Martin’s Gaydon headquarters. Specifications of the vehicle are kept secret, but the design builds on top of previous Aston Martin models and exhibits the same sleek curves and minimalism of architecture and engineering.
It is yet to be revealed what gadgets the luxurious ride will possess, but given that it will be none other than James Bond’s car, it will surely have to live up to the reputation of the fierce, elegant and dashing assassin.
Marek Reichman – Aston Martin Chief Creative Officer – will closely cooperate with the film’s director, Sam Mendes, to ensure the car is every bit the ideal statement vehicle for Britain’s most famous spy. Bond’s use of the brand began with the movie Goldfinger and has, since then, flourished into a decade-long creative partnership with the DB10 being the ultimate proof.
Sharp, faster and more aggressive – the design of the DB10 is in unison with the brand’s continuous innovation and development of its visionary models. Sophisticated and confident, it incorporates some of Aston Martin’s most bespoke characteristics, such as top performance, driving experience and unprecedented ferocity.
Due for release in the upcoming November, the introduction of the DB10 is one of the most anticipated events of 2015, and expected to generate a lot of buzz in the coming months. Its sublime, sinister aesthetic complements the darker undertone of the last few movies of the Bond franchise and is expected to enhance the premise of the new movie.