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sur la terre foreword

» foreword

01

>>> The time has come, once again, to saunter through Doha’s premiere showcase of style. Much to the delight of the elegant elite, the annual Watch & Jewellery Exhibition has descended upon Doha. Although this is the latest in a series of yearly events, the 2009 exhibition is of a notably higher carat. Never before have Qatar’s connoisseurs been so close to earthbound constellations, spreading as they do in a mosaic of masterfully crafted watches and jewels. In order to provide a roadmap to our preferred ports of call, Sur la Terre has painstakingly previewed the “glitterati” at the 2009 show. To see who we chose, and why, flip over to “Our Choice.” In another effort to make your exhibition experience exemplary, we have also held audience with the superstars of this year’s spectacle. Check out our tell-all tête-àtêtes with Rasha Alayan from Veleno and the horological heavyweight, Richard Mille. In the “World of Pearl,” we share everything you have always wanted to know about the former livelihood of the region, and explore why the spherical superstar has spread into a global phenomenon. For more global fare, roll over to “Rock Stars,” and read about the crème de la crème of diamonds and gems. Ever wanted to see a crystal encrusted vacuum cleaner? How about a diamond studded skull? In “Gilding the Lilly Pad,” we investigate the stranger side of style, and show you how luxury has invaded everyday life. The new year promises a world of discovery, and Sur la Terre is there to lead you through its most luxurious uncharted territories. Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the first stop on our journey, The 2009 Watch and Jewellery Exhibition: Qatar’s cavalcade of class! Steve Paugh

Sur La Terre – Doha

COVER IMAGE

General Manager: Jocquine Chami

Les Goutes Ganaches

Editor: Steve Paugh

collection by Schreiner Fine Jewellery.

Art Direction & Design: Roula Ayoub, Rena Chehayber, Lara Nakhlé, Lamis Nashef

Necklace in Red Gold.

Printed by: Raidy Printing Group

Villaggio Mall & Royal Plaza

Regional Managing Editor: James McCarthy

from the exclusive “Neo Haute Joaillerie”

PR, Sales & Marketing Director: Julia Toon

Handmade Tahitian South Sea Pearl and Diamonds

Editorial Contributors: Leen Qablawi, Désirée Mitterrand, Margaret Kemp

Exclusively at Ali Bin Ali Watches and Jewellery

Published by: Firefly Communications

Doha , Qatar

P.O. Box 11596, Doha-Qatar. Tel: +974 4340360 Fax: +974 4340359


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sur la terre content

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content

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sur la terre a world of pearl

sur la terre a world of pearl

A World of Pearl

17

>>> Prized over miles and throughout ages for their unmistakable magnificence and unquestionable rarity, pearls have been hunted, freed from the ocean’s abyss and fashioned into nearly every ornament the mind can imagine. It is impossible to resist the understated chic in a pearl earring or the beaded brilliance of the classic pearl necklace. From bedazzling bracelets to even more extravagant fair like the elegant trappings of royalty, the pearl has penetrated every part of a life worth living. They have even been harvested for their healing abilities, often seen as a rare cure-all in traditional medicine. Crushed into powder, they are added as an ingredient to make paint glimmer and into luxury cosmetics to make skin shimmer. Their lustrous essence has been celebrated in the expert strokes of artistic masters and their intrigue storied in the great tomes of literary history. The pearl is loved, hungered for and deeply cherished, but its mysterious nature is, for some, still clouded like the opacity of its glassy skin.

07 brand history

Welcome to the audacious universe of Farwaz Gruosi, founder of the de GRISOGONO brand

16 a world of pearl

Their beauty built a reputation for the region that lives on today. Dive with us into the wonderful world of pearls

22 on the red carpet

For something that appears so deceptively simple, the humble pearl is a thing of astounding complexity and absolute beauty. Its kaleidoscope of soft hues and cloudy swirls bely its true existence as one of the most intricate and sought-after precious materials on the planet. Sur la Terre explores this unique love affair as we take you on a tour through a world of pearl.

Sprinkled in stardust, the celebrities flash their wares at the Golden Globe Awards 2009

29 spotlight 22

sur la terre on the red carpet

sur la terre on the red carpet

23

Maestro of the minute, Richard Mille, talks passionately about his revolutionary Planetarium timepiece

33 our choice

Our guide to the latest in luxury to hit the show floor

< Kate Winslet - Chopard Jewels >

Red Carpet Regalia

The Golden Globes have once again come and gone, and with them the showcase of glitz and glamour that only Tinseltown can provide. Thanks, evidently, to the financial crisis, this year’s event was markedly more understated. But, even though most stars decided to take a more subtle approach, arriving in more sophistication than spectacle, they still shone in their own indomitable style. Of course, they did have just a little help from some well-placed jewels. Roll out the red carpet, put up the velvet ropes and set your camera’s flash to blinding, because Sur la Terre is ushering in the Red Carpet Regalia.

< Eva Longoria - Vendura Earrings >

41 brand history

With 254 years of horological excellence behind it, Vacheron Constantin is a brand with time on its hands

48 spotlight < Elizabeth Banks - Lorraine Schwartz and Fred Leighton jewels >

< Penelope Cruz - Chopard Jewels >

A unique new gem among Qatar’s jewellery elite, Rasha Alayan, explains all things Veleno


sur la terre content

42

sur la terre brand history

05

sur la terre brand history

43

It re-launches its jewellery line, publishes a magazine (Heure), creates large-size wristwatches, supplies chronometers… and when Italy bans trade in gold, Vacheron Constantin immediately manufactures bodies and bracelets from steel. In 1955, Vacheron Constantin’s dynamic spirit, centuries-old know-how and constant quest for excellence produce a genuine technological masterpiece. Two centuries after its foundation, the manufacturer succeeds in creating one of the thinnest watches in the world, measuring just 1.64 millimeters. Ten years later, the company ends its partnership with JaegerLeCoultre and faces the quartz revolution alone. Once again, thanks to its creativity and enthusiasm, the company creates an exceptional jewelled watch for a mysterious private customer who demands that his name never be disclosed and that the watch be the only one of its kind. This watch, named Kallista, was sculpted in a massive one-kilo gold ingot and its bracelet and body were embellished with 118 emerald-cut diamonds weighing a total of 130 carats. < Tour de L’Ile watch >

>>> It is in 1755, at the heart of the St. Gervais district in Geneva, that Jean-Marc Vacheron, like any respectable master watchmaker, hires his first apprentice. This event is hugely important in the history of watchmaking because the apprenticeship contract bears the oldest known mention of the first Vacheron Constantin watchmaker. Fifteen years later, the first complication watches leave this workshop, followed shortly by guilloche (pattern engraved) dials.

53 special lifestyle

Shimmering seas, sparkling jewellery and ultra cool watches. This is super yacht chic at its finest

60 accessories

From Chanel to Dior with a sprinkling of Boucheron and Bulgari, these sweet stones are the glistening cherry on top of luxury’s lavish cake

68 all that glitters

A brief glimpse into the world of the oddly excessive

During the first half of the 19th century, the grandson of Jean-Marc Vacheron, Jacques Barthélémy, takes over the family business and creates watches with a reputation for excellence such that he is able to export them to France and Italy. In 1819, he joins forces with François Constantin. The second half of the 19th century is marked by technological advancement thanks to Georges-Auguste Leschot, an engineer who revolutionises watchmaking techniques by adapting the pantograph in a way that allows certain watch components to be mass produced. This fundamental change catapulted Vacheron Constantin to the forefront of the emerging industrial age. The end of the century sees the appearance of the “Maltese Cross” symbol in the company’s logo. The motif is inspired by a component of the movement fixed to the winding stem that limits the degree of winding required.

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< Patrimony Contemporaine self-winding with the caliber 2450 >

< The 1972 watch >

In 1906, the first Vacheron Constantin boutique opens in Geneva on the Rue des Moulins, Quai de l’Ile. All of the brand’s watchmaking masterpieces are displayed on its ground floor. Among these is a veritable specialty of Vacheron Constantin: ladies enamel, gold and diamond brooch watches. If, very quickly, the First World War brings about a sharp slowdown in business, Switzerland’s neutral status enables the country’s watchmakers and jewellers to receive orders from abroad that they alone are able to fulfill. Russians, Scandinavians and Americans thus turn to Vacheron Constantin, which, while adapting to these new requests, continues to innovate by creating original mechanisms and assemblies for its watches. Technique and aesthetics are key words for the watchmaker. Between the two wars, Vacheron Constantin creates one of the most complex pocket watches the company has ever sold for King Farouk of Egypt. In 1938, strengthened by its achievements and eager to have an even wider range of resources available for its creations, the company agrees to enter into partnership with the powerful watchmaker Jaeger-LeCoultre. One year later, the Second World War breaks out and numerous foreign workers employed by Vacheron Constantin are called into action. However, the brand once again successfully adapts to the difficult circumstances.

< Ladies pendant brooch watch >

< Overseas Ladies >

< The Kallista watch >

sur la terre our choice

Girard-Perregaux A Cat’s Eye and Three Gold Bridges

72 rock stars

sur la terre our choice

Girard-Perregaux is taking wristwatch aficionados on a fairy tale stroll through time. Its Cat’s Eye line has been popular since its inception in 2004, inspiring in its slinking contours and oval shapes the soft purr of luxury. The latest model shows off a black mother-of-pearl face, affording a deep look into the cloudy dreamscape of knowing feline eyes, while the diamond ringed face elicits the cheeky curiosity of a cheshire grin. The new Tourbillon provides a clear view into its inner workings, dramatically punctuated by the new development of three gold bridges. These bridges ensure flawless technique by securing the watch’s complex movement. Both the Cat’s Eye and the Tourbillon are fine examples of Girard-Perregaux’s well-known horological brilliance and innovative design.

An audience with the top five Celebrity Stones in the world today

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Montblanc Diamonds and Melodies Montblanc is perhaps best known for their original product line: beautifully designed, luxury writing instruments. However, the brand has since diversified and is now regarded as one of the most exclusive producers of exceptional jewellery. Some of their newest collections offer a multifaceted jaunt through stone and song. The Mélodies Précieuses, Première Rencontre, Nuits d’été, Hymne à l’amour and A Petits Pas collections are each inspired by the passion of the romantic interlude. Each piece immortalises the fiery brilliance of love, not in verse, but in crystalline ballads composed of precious gems. The Montblanc Diamonds, on the other hand, capture the glamorous spirit of the red carpet, rolling out the shine in handpicked priceless stones and expertly crafted settings. Every piece shimmers with the light of love and the luxury of exclusivity.

74 iced out

It is now super cool to be square... even round, sculpted or housing rare flora. Folks, raise your glasses to the designer ice cube

76 chapters

60

sur la terre accessories

sur la terre accessories

61

Literary gems for jewellery lovers

77 tunes

Musical gold from artists past and present

78 silver screen

Jewel encrusted classics from the silver screen

79 online

Pearls of wisdom from the world wide web

Sweet Stones Production: Julie Cerf Photography: Ian Abela @ Visionairs In Art www.ianabela.com Model: Polina Askeri @ Karin Make-up: Sandra Jeannin @ Powder & Shine Hair: Audrey Lamber Studio: Pin-up

Watch “Chocolat” yellow gold CHANEL Ring in yellow gold with diamonds, citrine, amethyst, pink garnet CHRISTIAN DIOR Ring “camélia aquatique” in yellow gold and citrine CHANEL Ring “Mademoiselle” in yellow gold CHANEL


MAGAZINE-final 1.indd 6

1/31/09 2:11:34 PM


sur la terre brand history

07

de GRISOGONO

or the audacious universe of Fawaz Gruosi the conquering spirit Text: Désirée Mitterrand Photography: All rights reserved

Since 1993, the de GRISOGONO brand, under the impetus of its founder Fawaz Gruosi, has never ceased to amaze with its jewellery and watchmaking designs as imaginative as they are audacious. From Black Diamonds to Icy Diamonds via the “Browny Brown Gold”, the Otturatore watch and the Meccanico dG, de GRISOGONO has vaunted its inventiveness and a perfectly-controlled expertise.


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sur la terre brand history

< “Instrumentino Small” watch in pink gold: bezel, bracelet and dial set with white diamonds >

< THE OTTURATORE whose bidirectional dial turns by simply pushing on one of the two mechanical buttons >

>>> Fawaz Gruosi acquired his taste for fine things at a young age and Florence, the city that nurtured his childhood, no doubt played a major part in this. Seven years professional experience from the age of 18 with a renowned jeweller in the Florentine city, then as representative in Saudi Arabia for the Alierza family (official Harry Winston agent) and finally time spent with Gianni Bulgari in his establishment reinforced his desire to display, and incidentally sell, the beautiful and the exclusive. Backed by two associates, Fawaz Gruosi founded de GRISOGONO in 1993 - from the maiden name of the mother of one of his partners - and launched himself with no marketing strategy into the sale of works of art and jewels as precious as they were unique. People soon started talking about the extraordinary designs displayed in the shop in Geneva’s Rue du Rhône and three years later, when Fawaz Gruosi separated

from his two associates, de GRISOGONO was grabbing attention and thus even imposing his style. In 1996 - happy chance for the more rational among us or fabulous destiny for the others - Fawaz Gruosi stopped short in front of a photograph of a 190- carat black diamond christened “Black Orlov”. Fascinated by this enigmatic stone, the jeweller decided to make it his emblem and also devoted a collection to it. A real first in the world of haute joaillerie, for the stone, also called carbonado, is hardly ever used as it is both rare and extremely fragile. Success was not just unexpected but immense and three years later the black diamond price per carat rocketed on the precious stone market. The entire jet set was now sporting these dark gems - de GRISOGONO was on its way and nothing could hold it back.

< THE MECCANICO DG with its double time display, both analogue and digital. Version in pink gold and rubber >


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sur la terre brand history

< “APPLE” RING in white and pink gold, set with 12.30 carats of rubies, 1.15 carats of white diamonds, 0.10 carats of emeralds and two brown diamonds, 0.05 carats > < “MELAGRANA” COLLECTION, de GRISOGONO ring in pink gold set with brown diamonds, pink tourmalines, amethysts, peridots, blue topazes and orange garnets >

< RING IN WHITE GOLD, set with 14.26 carats of “Icy Diamonds”, 0.52 carats of white diamonds and a white pearl from the South’s Seas >

< RING IN WHITE GOLD set with 238 emeralds of 2.08 carats, 347 white diamonds of 8.52 carats, 140 rubies of 1.13 carats and one tourmaline pariba of 76.66 carats >

Always ahead of the trends, even getting a certain pleasure out of swimming against the tide to create a fashion, in 2000 Fawaz Gruosi launched a collection of jewels set with diamonds with high fluorescence and classed as white. These milky, almost opaque stones with an enchanting beauty were christened “Icy Diamonds” and quickly became another emblematic collection for the brand. At the same, boosted by the success encountered within the jewellery sector, Fawaz Gruosi decided to take his first steps into the world of watchmaking and at Baselworld presented a collection soberly entitled Instrumento No. Uno. In 2002, the Chopard group became a shareholder in the company and one year later, having given birth to two more watches called the watch strikes before shutting again. Not content with the

instant success of this original design limited to fifty copies, de GRISOGONO invented a new golden tint with caramel glints called “Browny Brown Gold” (using the principle of Physical Vaporisation and Deposition) and opened his own jewellery workshop outside Geneva at Plan-les-Ouates. The following year saw the appearance of four new watches, the Instrumento Grande Open Date, Uno Grande Date, FG One and the Be Eight. In 2007, Fawaz Gruosi bought out the Chopard shareholding in GRIInstrumentino and Instrumento Doppio. Timepieces called the Instrumento Doppio Tre and Instrumento Tondo followed, as well as a line of jewellery that married shagreen leather and precious stones. This original idea proved an immediate success, winning over a demanding clientele constantly seeking exceptional pieces.

“Eva Herzigova, Naomi Campbell, Sophie Marceau, Salma Hayek, Charlize Theron, Demi Moore, Adriana Karembeu, Penelope Cruz - they have all worn, wear or will wear Fawaz Gruosi’s designs. “


sur la terre brand history

< RING “PEAR” SHAPED SET with 8.49 carats of “Icy Diamonds” and 2.17 carats of white diamonds >

< EARRINGS IN WHITE GOLD, set with 5.78 carats of white diamonds, 7.27 carats of black diamonds, and a white pearl and a grey pearl >

< JEWELLERY PENDANT WATCH in white gold. White gold chain. 934 white diamonds: 31.48 cts. Quartz movement. Hours, minutes Domed sapphire crystal. Push on crystal to set time. Water-resistant to 30 meters >

Watch collections followed one after the other, but with little similarity between them: in 2005, Fawaz Gruosi created the Occhio Ripetizione Minuti, a complication with a 12-section diaphragm revealing the movement when SOGONO and thus became the sole proprietor. To mark this new independence, he designed a ring based on natural ruby of 45.39 carats christened VirginScarlet and two timepieces, the Instrumento Novantatre and the Piccolina. The year that Fawaz Gruosi celebrated the fifteenth anniversary of his company was also the occasion to present a world first at Baselworld: the Meccanico dG, a digital watch with dual analogue and mechanical display. This latest truly technical innovation is just like its designer - audacious and imaginative. Thus in barely eight years the brand has

managed to make its mark and incur respect in the demanding world of watchmaking. Using tradition as a basis to go far beyond it, the brand is forever combining research and innovation in the image of the Meccanico dG, the patented world first from de GRISOGONO, without forgetting the Otturatore watch, another new product presented at Baselworld in 2008. Seventeen watch collections have been created between 2000 and 2007, all orchestrated by the Plan-les-Ouates workshop. This 850 sq. metre space spread over three floors has a six-person research and development unit. Although the timepiece movements are not created in house, each model is assembled at the facility, with an annual production capacity of around 4000 units. This is set to increase, however, with the company projecting a rise in production to around 8000 watches by 2011.

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12

sur la terre brand history

The watchmaking and jewellery currently account for 50% each of the company’s activities. De GRISOGONO has had to adapt its structures in the face of its dazzling rise; it has expanded its production sites and hired new employees, increasing from two at its creation to 180 at the end of 2007. It is planned to build a new manufacture this year to support this boom and a distribution network with five wholly owned subsidiaries in France, Italy, Great Britain, United States and Japan has been set up to meet demand. De GRISOGONO has fifteen stand alone outlets worldwide, the most recent additions being Tokyo and Saint-Barthelemy, and in a bid to maintain brand exclusivity, the company has decreed that there will never be more than 25 of these stores. However, the brand does have a further 180 points of sale throughout the world, and it is expected that this network will grow to around 300 exclusive agents by 2011. The brand’s renown seems to be intrinsically linked to the personality of its founder. Entrepreneurial, imaginative and determined, Fawas Gruosi hosts stunning evenings where celebrities from all over the world rub shoulders. In winter, Gstaad dances to the clicking of de GISOGONO necklaces, in the summer Porto Cervo sets the stage for the enigmatic founder’s celebrations, Cannes Film Festival provides a stage

for de GISOGONO’s springtime glamour evenings while Los Angeles shimmers with Gruosi’s creations at Oscar time. Eva Herzigova, Naomi Campbell, Sophie Marceau, Salma Hayek, Charlize Theron, Demi Moore, Adriana Karembeu, Penelope Cruz - they have all worn, wear or will wear Fawaz Gruosi’s designs. And if the women succumb to the irresistible appeal of these jewels, the men also rush to these evenings. Actors, fashion designers, singers, designers are all at the party, helping arouse the media infatuation with them and transforming every launch into a true happening.


sur la terre brand history mode

However, creativity and glamour in watch making and haute joaillerie are no longer enough for Fawaz Guosi. He is not a man content to rest on his laurels and has recently made his first foray into the world of handbags, launching a new line of products designed for women who are looking for something a little more special. The collection owes everything to the Gruosiâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s over-active imagination and extreme requirements. Work, energy and audacity, it appears, is the mantra of a man who will undoubtedly continue to surprise and enthrall aesthetes and clients the world over.

< BR INSTRUMENT Grand Minuteur >

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sur la terre a world of pearl

A World of Pearl

For something that appears so deceptively simple, the humble pearl is a thing of astounding complexity and absolute beauty. Its kaleidoscope of soft hues and cloudy swirls bely its true existence as one of the most intricate and sought-after precious materials on the planet. Sur la Terre explores this unique love affair as we take you on a tour through a world of pearl.


sur la terre a world of pearl

>>> Prized over miles and throughout ages for their unmistakable magnificence and unquestionable rarity, pearls have been hunted, freed from the oceanâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s abyss and fashioned into nearly every ornament the mind can imagine. It is impossible to resist the understated chic in a pearl earring or the beaded brilliance of the classic pearl necklace. From bedazzling bracelets to even more extravagant fair like the elegant trappings of royalty, the pearl has penetrated every part of a life worth living. They have even been harvested for their healing abilities, often seen as a rare cure-all in traditional medicine. Crushed into powder, they are added as an ingredient to make paint glimmer and into luxury cosmetics to make skin shimmer. Their lustrous essence has been celebrated in the expert strokes of artistic masters and their intrigue storied in the great tomes of literary history. The pearl is loved, hungered for and deeply cherished, but its mysterious nature is, for some, still clouded like the opacity of its glassy skin.

17


18

sur la terre a world of pearl

The pearl is, in truth, a chance splash of colour on the canvas of nature. When a tiny particle slips unnoticed inside the shell of an oyster, it is met with a very enviable fate, for it is completely covered in a thick coating of nacre, more commonly known as mother-of-pearl. This glamorous gloss affords the pearl its distinctive, dreamlike colouring, and it is the layering process that gives it its spherical shape. Thanks to the inventiveness of human nature, the development of pearls has been pried from the unrelenting grip of mother nature. Pearl farms have been set up to mimic the natural growth of pearls by injecting a particle into an oyster to initiate the pearling process. While these pearls are still beautiful, they are nowhere near as treasured as the rarer natural variety. Before they were farmed, however, pearls were hunted, and it was in this way that the wealth of many nations was born and for many years maintained.


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sur la terre amode world of pearl

Pearl diving is one of the oldest means of income in the Gulf, particularly in Qatar. In fact, before the life-changing discovery of oil in the 1930â&#x20AC;&#x2122;s and the subsequent unearthing of natural gas, the pearl was basically the only source of substantial profit in the State. Shirking the dangers of the deep, Qatari divers would grasp weighted objects like stones and, with tools held fast between gritted teeth, would bravely plunge to the ocean floor in search of fortune. These intrepid divers fought off hallucination, sickness, water pressure and oceanic monsters to chase and establish a heritage that still remains in the hearts of nationals today. The remnants of the pearl industry are all but gone in Qatar, but the importance of that history still hangs in the air. It echoes through its streets and resonates within its structures, most notably in Dohaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s manmade island, aptly named The Pearl. Having come predominantly from the Gulf region, the pearl remains a symbol of Qatarâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s past, and one that will be carried well into the future. Be it white, black, cultivated or natural, this small orb of opulence has captured within its own globe the fascination of the entire world.


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sur la terre on the red carpet

Red Carpet Regalia

The Golden Globes have once again come and gone, and with them the showcase of glitz and glamour that only Tinseltown can provide. Thanks, evidently, to the financial crisis, this yearâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s event was markedly more understated. But, even though most stars decided to take a more subtle approach, arriving in more sophistication than spectacle, they still shone in their own indomitable style. Of course, they did have just a little help from some well-placed jewels. Roll out the red carpet, put up the velvet ropes and set your cameraâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s flash to blinding, because Sur la Terre is ushering in the Red Carpet Regalia.

< Eva Longoria - Vendura Earrings >

Photography: All rights reserved


sur la terre on the red carpet

< Kate Winslet - Chopard Jewels >

< Elizabeth Banks - Lorraine Schwartz and Fred Leighton jewels >

< Penelope Cruz - Chopard Jewels >

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sur la terre on the red carpet

< Renee Zellweger - Vendura Maltese cross cuffs >

< Miley Cyrus - Neil Lane chandelier earrings / gold cuff bracelet >

< Jennifer Carpenter - Neil Lane Necklace >

< Kate Beckinsdale - Fred Leighton Chandelier Earrings >


sur la terre on the red carpet

< Sandra Bullock - Amrapali gold/turquoise earrings & Bochic snake bracelet >

< Debra Messing - Fred Leighton Jewels >

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sur la terre on the red carpet

< Demi Moore Closeup - Cartier (assorted) >

< Demi Moore - Cartier (assorted) >


sur la terre on the red carpet

< Drew Barrymore - Lorraine Schwartz >

< Eva Mendes - Van Cleef & Arpels necklace >

27


Sustainability inspires our every step

Development means taking clear, thoughtful actions towards investing in a brighter tomorrow â&#x20AC;&#x201D; for our customers, communities, staff, shareholders and the world around us. As a future-focused property investment company and developer, we are deeply engaged in ensuring every step we make is connected to our unwavering commitment to people and nature.

Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s simple, We stay connected

Find out more by visiting www.sabban-pi.com

Connects to Life


sur la terre spotlight

29

The Idea Mille

Richard Mille is one of the foremost watchmakers of the modern age. Infused with his love of power, torque and technique, each of his brandâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s watches are impeccable, from the style right down to the substance. His new project, The Planetarium, has been a 14-year labour of love and is the most revolutionary horological creation for an age. Sur la Terre recently had the unique opportunity to sit down with him to talk about this new project, as well as his motivations, inspirations and future plans. Ladies and gents, we give you the sovereign of the second, the maestro of the minute, the one, the only Richard Mille.

< Richard Mille >


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sur la terre spotlight

< Planetarium Tellurium >

For those who are unfamiliar with Richard Mille, please tell us a little something about the brand. What is your philosophy? What are your influences? Who is your target consumer? I would say my philosophy is based on three pillars. The first is the best of technique and innovation. We push technique beyond the limit because we know we can. Other brands use 21st century tools to do 19th century watches, but I wanted to do something more modern, while still maintaining some classic techniques. I admit that it is hard for a mechanical watch to function like a digital, but we are constantly working to enhance our creations. We have effectively reduced friction as well as boosting performance with innovate new techniques. We use technical creativity to make our watches more efficient, but we also want it to enhance their artistic dimension. The second pillar is the best of architecture. I love to work within three dimensions. All the parts of my watches, from the case to the dials to the inner mechanism, everything works together to enhance its value. I think high luxury should be utilised, and hate the thought of a watch that you put in a safe. I want my clients to wear my watches, so I like to mix extremes of performance and development with maximum sophistication. At the same time, I want to make watches easy to live with, easy to wind, easy to read and with easy functions. I love that mixture! Many clients have said that our watches are like a Formula 1 race car that you can wear to the office every day. They are beautiful and refined, but they are also very ergonomic, fitting well on the wrist.

In essence, they are a good companion for life. The third pillar is the best of watch culture. To me, it is very important that every part, every angle of the watch, is rendered and finished by hand. Everybody in the luxury business is working with a marketing approach; that is to say, they are looking at price and competition, and then they produce something. I have done exactly the opposite. I don’t initially integrate any possible public price. Until the moment they are released, I don’t know the cost. That way, I am not locked by marketing parameters, and I can focus on perfection. If I have to use more expensive materials, so be it! I don’t mind because I refuse to compromise. After you go through all of the marketing channels, you have what I call a ‘politically correct’ project without any soul and without any magic. For me, luxury must remain magical. I’m not interested in volume. The cost is a result of my artistic and technical choices, not the opposite. It is an effect, not a cause. I do not compromise, so I feel very free. That’s very refreshing. How did you keep this mentality of freedom through art within a very productoriented field? I listen to myself, first and foremost. If you ask advice of many different people, you have many different opinions. When I first started, I hoped someone would

appreciate the artistry, the architecture, and not necessarily the price. What I didn’t realise was that there would be thousands of people with this idea. I was sure that the world of luxury had exploded ten years ago, but things have changed since then. People have brand knowledge now, they know the difference between brands. The luxury culture is now very sharp. Ten years ago, the social status was dictated by the brand. Now, people are more discerning, they don’t try to justify themselves based on what they wear. Now, they buy something based on personal pleasure. We are able to give that to them. We return pleasure to the excesses of the luxury world.


sur la terre spotlight

And people also have preferences within that luxury world. They have a preference for when they go out, when they go for parties, when they go to formal events. How do you keep up with all of these individual preferences? Are there any particular challenges from a design perspective? As I said before, I like to focus on technique; not just for the sake of technique, but to use it to establish a certain artistic dimension. For example, this year, for the 150th anniversary of Parisian Jewellery house, Boucheron (The Richard Mille RM 018 ‘Hommage a Boucheron’), I created a limited edition watch with an innovative feature: all of the wheels in the piece are made from semi-precious or precious stones. This was a huge technical challenge. Each piece is made from something unusual, perhaps diamond or onyx or malachite. It’s not especially technical so much, but it is artistic and there are many unique challenges and methods that go into creating something with that kind of design. Another example is the pocket watch that I came out with recently. Everybody said that this style of timepiece was dead, but to me it was just a ‘sleeping beauty,’ it just needed a kiss to awaken it. For me, there is nothing more elegant than a pocket watch. It is a very dandy yet macho style. It can go with jeans or three-piece suits, so it is also very versatile. It is a lifestyle, and I like to include a lifestyle dimension in my watches. I don’t do complex watches just for the pleasure of it. This is what keeps the brand special. Why did you initially decide to come to the Middle East, and specifically Qatar? What is the importance of being in the region? The Middle East has this image of being a place that accepts watches only if they are covered in diamonds or what is called ‘bling-bling,’ but this is changing. The consumers’ habits are changing. With more people traveling, there is greater exposure to other ideas. Consumers see different designs elsewhere either while traveling, or in magazines like Sur la Terre, and they have a better understanding of modern luxury culture. These days, consumers are getting more sophisticated, and often know much more than the salesmen in the boutiques. So the culture has spread, especially here. It’s just like the extra-light watches I produce. In the watch industry, there is something called ‘perceived value,’ which incorporates the idea that what is heavier is more expensive and more elegant. One day, I designed a very light, sporty watch, but the marketing managers didn’t like it because it didn’t fit into this idea of perceived value. So I did what I always do,

< RM 007 Set Decor Sun White Diamonds and Saphires >

< Planetarium Tellurium >

< RM 018 Hommage a Boucheron >

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sur la terre spotlight

< RM 020 >

I took the challenge and made it even lighter! I made the the lightest watch in existence. It only weighed 29 grams! It took me three years to find the proper materials and method to produce it, and the price ended up being inversely proportional to the weight. To appreciate this piece, you have to have a certain level of understanding outside of convention. The King of Spain, who is a big collector of timepieces, has this watch, and when he accidentally broke it, he wanted another one immediately. He said that it had become like a second skin to him, that’s how much he loved it. So this notion of comfort and a new idea of luxury is being appreciated by more and more clients, especially here in The Gulf, and it is that smart buyer to whom we are trying to appeal. Who are some of your other high profile buyers? Is there a certain world from which your clientele hails? Is there a certain mindset of a Richard Mille watch wearer? Well, other than the King of Spain, they are mostly prominent businessmen. There are a few people in show business who are my clients, but it must be understood that this is not a “show business” watch. It is the new idea of an unassuming cool; it is not ostentatious, but it is definitely luxurious. This is our idea of extreme luxury. There is a heart and a soul to our watches. It is more sophisticated than your average luxury timepiece. Tell us about your newest and arguably most ambitious project: The Planetarium. It

< RM 016 Red Gold >

is a very different timepiece blending the history of horology with the modern world of motorsport. What gave you the specific idea to bring back this type of timekeeping piece? Did you twist the two worlds of history and car racing together? Yes, definitely. My watches are a mixture of different cultures: car, aircraft, space, boat, and architecture. It is a unique mix I admit, but I don’t like to be a prisoner of anything. I know what I like, and I make what I like. My only limit is technique. The Planetarium is a very interesting concept. Only about a hundred pieces were made from the 16th to the 19th century. They are very complex machines. My Planetarium, on the other hand, is very simple. It is the most complete planetarium ever made, and it is also the easiest to manipulate. It contains a perpetual calendar, the time, the zodiac sign and the exact placement of the planets. You can go back to the date of your birth and see the exact position of the planets on that day with a simple toggle of the controls. What I also love is the picture of culture in modernity. It is something very charming, historically speaking, but the angles are so modern and contemporary. The tolerance is breathtaking and the level of error is very low, even though it is handmade. It has taken 14 years to design and create The Planetarium, but it took that long to ensure its precision. That attention to detail has paid off, and it has been called the Mona Lisa of the watch world. There has been no piece like it before, and I am sure there will not be another like it

again. It’s unbelievable and unique; extremely complex, yet very easy. It is sharp, cutting edge, made from modern materials like titanium, but it maintains its romanticism. The magic is when you meet all these parameters to make something extraordinary, aesthetic and fantastic. We have done that here. We have taken classic intricacy and turned it into modern simplicity. You must hear this all the time, but, of all the watches you have designed and created, do you have a favourite? It may be cliche, but my favorite watch is the next one. The trend in the watch business is to produce one new model every five years, but that is not enough for me. Next year, I am coming out with eight new models, so it is almost impossible to choose a favourite! However, it does mean that there is a lot of work for our production and design departments! But I can’t stop, because each is a technical test. It is a welcome challenge and I have fun every time I design and manufacture a watch. When you have no break and no limit of budget, you are free to do what you like. There may be a limited production, but each one will be unique. Each of them represents a new era in watch history. Each one is significant. I eliminate limits, and at the end of the day, my clients are grateful for that creativity, just as I am grateful to all of them for taking a chance on me. People say that this brand has led to a new era in watchmaking, but it would have been nothing without my clients.


sur la terre our choice

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Our Choice in Our guide to the latest or lo f ow sh e luxury to hit th

Dior Homme’s Midas Touch This year, Dior Homme will present its very first masculine watch, the Chiffre Rouge 103. Looking as though it was wrested from the gilded grip of King Midas himself, the 103 is completely coated in classic yellow gold. To add a flicker of brilliance to its virile sheen, the watch face is crystalised with sapphire and offset by the glint of diamonds. But this watch has more than just a pretty face, as behind its golden facade is a sinuous musculature of technology. Based on the design by Swiss manufacturer, Zenith, the “Irreductible” movement grounds its elegance in practicality, making this the perfect accessory for a man of discerning taste and class.


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sur la terre our choice

Girard-Perregaux A Cat’s Eye and Three Gold Bridges

Girard-Perregaux is taking wristwatch aficionados on a fairy tale stroll through time. Its Cat’s Eye line has been popular since its inception in 2004, inspiring in its slinking contours and oval shapes the soft purr of luxury. The latest model shows off a black mother-of-pearl face, affording a deep look into the cloudy dreamscape of knowing feline eyes, while the diamond ringed face elicits the cheeky curiosity of a cheshire grin. The new Tourbillon provides a clear view into its inner workings, dramatically punctuated by the new development of three gold bridges. These bridges ensure flawless technique by securing the watch’s complex movement. Both the Cat’s Eye and the Tourbillon are fine examples of Girard-Perregaux’s well-known horological brilliance and innovative design.


sur la terre our choice

Montblanc Diamonds and Melodies Montblanc is perhaps best known for their original product line: beautifully designed, luxury writing instruments. However, the brand has since diversified and is now regarded as one of the most exclusive producers of exceptional jewellery. Some of their newest collections offer a multifaceted jaunt through stone and song. The Mélodies Précieuses, Première Rencontre, Nuits d’été, Hymne à l’amour and A Petits Pas collections are each inspired by the passion of the romantic interlude. Each piece immortalises the fiery brilliance of love, not in verse, but in crystalline ballads composed of precious gems. The Montblanc Diamonds, on the other hand, capture the glamorous spirit of the red carpet, rolling out the shine in handpicked priceless stones and expertly crafted settings. Every piece shimmers with the light of love and the luxury of exclusivity.

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sur la terre our choice

Jaeger-LeCoultre 175 Years of Time Mastery Jaeger-LeCoultre is celebrating 175 years of expert watchmaking this year with four exceptionally-made timepieces. Every offering comes from Jaeger-LeCoultreâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s highly regarded Master line, each made from the finest materials and glinting in 18-carats of elegant yet understated pink gold. Each piece commemorates a special moment of manufacturing advancement in the history of timekeeping. The Master Minute Repeater, with its gong made from a secret crystal, celebrates the innovation of sound, while the Master Eight Days Perpetual SQ represents the intricacy of technical watchmaking. The Master Grand Tourbillon is a lightweight spectacle of modern luxury and inventiveness. Finally, at 1.85 mm, the Master Ultra Thin stands out as the thinnest timepiece in the world today. All four watches come together as an impressive showcase of progress and the most modern developments in the movement of time.


sur la terre our choice

Modern Home Traditional Flare Modern Home is making a strong presence at this yearâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s exhibition with a fantastic array of watches from legendary brands. Favre Leuba and Vulcain. But it wonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t just be timepieces at the show, as one of the most historic jewellery houses will be on hand to shine. FabergĂŠ needs no introduction, for its name is already etched in the minds of decadence lovers the world over. The legendary Russian Imperial jeweller has been a mainstay in the luxury community since it first created its now famous bejewelled eggs for the royal family in 1885. Its further expansion into elegant design launched its name into the style stratosphere, particularly after creating the crown jewels of the Russian Tsar. This legacy of excellence continues in the offerings of today, as the heredity of the Tsar line still shines within the pristine golds and glinting jewels of its modern watch and jewellery collections.

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sur la terre our choice

Damas’s Jewelled Jungle of Time

Damas, one of the world’s leading jewellers, has lifted the veil on one of its most diverse collections to date. The list of brand names present in this elite assemblage of horology is like a call to arms of luxury. The harmonious complexity of Jacquet Droz expresses itself through its new Hommage Paris 1785 limited edition series. Golddipped and bejewelled with 178 diamonds, sapphires and other twinkling stones, the Hommage Paris is a fine supplement to its noless-breathtaking Hommage Geneve 1784 line. Perrelet continues this stroll through sumptuousness with its award-winning Diamond Flower. The bouquet is a stunning union of pedal-soft beauty and rock-solid design. Mother Nature’s flowery prints can also be seen in Sarcar’s celebratory collection for its 60th anniversary, which not only offers gold and diamond flora, but also features fauna, both real and mythic, frozen in ultimate luxury. The best in sports timekeeping is also available, with Parmigiani’s new, hand-finished Kalpagraph Chronograph and Pequignet’s Moorea Swan Ladies Quartz Timepiece, which is strong yet subtle. To round it all off is the technique, elegance and refinement of Varotti. With all of this choice, it’s clear that Damas truly does have all the time in the world.


sur la terre our choice

King Cartier

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Famously declared “The Jeweller of Kings, The King of Jewellers,” Cartier has not only appeared on red carpets, but also in the throne rooms of royalty. In fact, their Inde Mystérieuse celebrates the near 100 year bond between Cartier and the Indian aristocracy. It is easy to see a rich Indian culture in the collection; maharajas peek out from behind the facets in expertly cut stones and grin under diamond chandelier necklaces. The patterns in the collection are deeply inspired from classic Indian symbols and styles, like that of the bengal tiger, simultaneously exhibiting the contours of a rich history and the dangling sleekness of a feminine style. Emeralds, rubies, sapphires and diamonds all glow in a rich ember of colour, set magnificently in a web of platinum and gold. Along with the other offerings from Cartier, the unique skill and tradition in the Inde Mystérieuse collection is a must see at this year’s Doha showcase.


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sur la terre our choice

The Pomellato Symphony Pomellato has been a guiding light in jewellery design for the past 40 years, and they persist in being a pure creative force to this day. Led by the visionary genius of CEO Francesco Minoli, the company continues to reinvent itself to make its appeal broader and much more stylistically encompassing. Its new lines reflect this commitment to excellence. Employing brown diamonds, rich golds and burnished silver, the Tango collection is a slow drift through the darker corners of design. The Sabbia line is a romantic stroll through light, with heart-shaped clusters of precious metal and light stones bedazzling the air with white and pink. All others are a symphony of beauty: Sirene, a melody in amber; Luna, a canto of sky blue and moonstone and Harem, a soft jazz number in smoky quartz. All combine to make the most arresting Pomellato collection yet.


sur la terre brand history

Vacheron Constantin

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< Patrimony Contemporaine Retrograde Day and Date >

The meaning of excellence In 2005, Vacheron Constantin celebrated its 250th anniversary, a landmark for the world’s oldest, continuously operating watch manufacturer. This world-renowned, constantly evolving house blends ancestral know-how with an insatiable desire for innovation, producing exceptional watchmaking creations. Its journey has been both exceptional and noteworthy…

Text: Désirée Mitterrand Photography: All rights reserved


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sur la terre brand history

< Tour de L’Ile watch >

>>> It is in 1755, at the heart of the St. Gervais district in Geneva, that Jean-Marc Vacheron, like any respectable master watchmaker, hires his first apprentice. This event is hugely important in the history of watchmaking because the apprenticeship contract bears the oldest known mention of the first Vacheron Constantin watchmaker. Fifteen years later, the first complication watches leave this workshop, followed shortly by guilloche (pattern engraved) dials. During the first half of the 19th century, the grandson of Jean-Marc Vacheron, Jacques Barthélémy, takes over the family business and creates watches with a reputation for excellence such that he is able to export them to France and Italy. In 1819, he joins forces with François Constantin. The second half of the 19th century is marked by technological advancement thanks to Georges-Auguste Leschot, an engineer who revolutionises watchmaking techniques by adapting the pantograph in a way that allows certain watch components to be mass produced. This fundamental change catapulted Vacheron Constantin to the forefront of the emerging industrial age. The end of the century sees the appearance of the “Maltese Cross” symbol in the company’s logo. The motif is inspired by a component of the movement fixed to the winding stem that limits the degree of winding required.

< Patrimony Contemporaine self-winding with the caliber 2450 >

In 1906, the first Vacheron Constantin boutique opens in Geneva on the Rue des Moulins, Quai de l’Ile. All of the brand’s watchmaking masterpieces are displayed on its ground floor. Among these is a veritable specialty of Vacheron Constantin: ladies enamel, gold and diamond brooch watches. If, very quickly, the First World War brings about a sharp slowdown in business, Switzerland’s neutral status enables the country’s watchmakers and jewellers to receive orders from abroad that they alone are able to fulfill. Russians, Scandinavians and Americans thus turn to Vacheron Constantin, which, while adapting to these new requests, continues to innovate by creating original mechanisms and assemblies for its watches. Technique and aesthetics are key words for the watchmaker. Between the two wars, Vacheron Constantin creates one of the most complex pocket watches the company has ever sold for King Farouk of Egypt. In 1938, strengthened by its achievements and eager to have an even wider range of resources available for its creations, the company agrees to enter into partnership with the powerful watchmaker Jaeger-LeCoultre. One year later, the Second World War breaks out and numerous foreign workers employed by Vacheron Constantin are called into action. However, the brand once again successfully adapts to the difficult circumstances.


sur la terre brand history

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It re-launches its jewellery line, publishes a magazine (Heure), creates large-size wristwatches, supplies chronometersâ&#x20AC;Ś and when Italy bans trade in gold, Vacheron Constantin immediately manufactures bodies and bracelets from steel. In 1955, Vacheron Constantinâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s dynamic spirit, centuries-old know-how and constant quest for excellence produce a genuine technological masterpiece. Two centuries after its foundation, the manufacturer succeeds in creating one of the thinnest watches in the world, measuring just 1.64 millimeters. Ten years later, the company ends its partnership with JaegerLeCoultre and faces the quartz revolution alone. Once again, thanks to its creativity and enthusiasm, the company creates an exceptional jewelled watch for a mysterious private customer who demands that his name never be disclosed and that the watch be the only one of its kind. This watch, named Kallista, was sculpted in a massive one-kilo gold ingot and its bracelet and body were embellished with 118 emerald-cut diamonds weighing a total of 130 carats. < The 1972 watch >

< Ladies pendant brooch watch >

< Overseas Ladies >

< The Kallista watch >


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sur la terre brand history

The 1970s are marked by the dramatic fall in sales due to the first oil crisis. This difficult period weakens Vacheron Constantin until Saudi Prince Sheikh Ahmed Zaki Yamani purchases a stake in the company in 1982. In 1988, he buys 5,000 shares and adds them to the 3,500 that he already owns, giving him 85% of the company’s capital. The end of the 20th century serves as a showcase for several exceptional creations. In 1995, Vacheron Constantin produces a limited series of 50 watches called Mercator. Created to commemorate the 400th anniversary of the death of the eponymous mathematician and geographer, the timepieces display his hemispheric maps on the enamel dial. A pair of hands in the form of a compass and an automatic movement are the finishing touches of this technical and aesthetic masterpiece. One year later, Vacheron Constantin joins the Richemont group. The arrival of the year 2000 is celebrated with the creation of a luxury watch collection baptized “Malte”. This collection perfectly embodies the spirit of the company: timeless lines and spectacular technical innovations.

< Métiers d’Art Les Masques collection >

In recent years, Vacheron Constantin has concentrated on creations which are very contemporary but still inspired by the vast heritage of the company. The “Egérie” collection is an unqualified example of this: dedicated to women, its wristwatches have a polished or diamond encrusted crystal accentuating a guilloche dial, in mother-ofpearl or diamond-paved, housed in a body embellished with diamonds.

For men there is the “Grande Classique”. Sober and elegant, this exceptional, highone quality watch, entirely designed in the company’s workshops, provides extraordinary accuracy for a mechanical movement. Far from resting on its laurels and remaining resolutely focused on the future, Vacheron Constantin opened its new headquarters and factory in Plan-les-Ouates at the heart of the canton of Geneva in 2004.

< Mercator >

< Egérie collection >


sur la terre brand history

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< Secret clock L’Esprit des Cabinotiers >

Designed by Bernard Tschumi, the building brilliantly combines concrete and glass, volume and light, durability and dynamism. This space brings together under one roof the company’s administration, production and customer services, while the Quai de l’Ile building in Geneva has the boutique on the ground floor and, upstairs, the heritage centre with its interactive exhibitions. Just one year later, to mark the 250th anniversary of the brand, the company launched a commemorative collection of five incredible timepieces. These include four limited edition wristwatches (“Jubilé 1755”, “Métiers d’Art”, “St Gervais”, “Tour de L’Ile”), all with distinctive features relating to this anniversary. The “Tour de L’Ile”, for example, is the most complicated small series wristwatch ever created. Or “L’Esprit des Cabinotiers”, an extraordinary clock whose pinkgold sphere rests on a lapis lazuli, onyx and pink-gold base. < Malte Tonneau Openworked Tourbillon >


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sur la terre brand history

< Wall watch in the form of a stylized Maltese cross >

Comprising eight petals, the globe can only be opened by a mechanism known solely by its owner. This is a unique piece that required the combined efforts of the best craftsmen. Today Vacheron Constantin tirelessly continues its quest for perfection, producing fewer than 20,000 pieces a year - greatly complicated pieces, pieces of art, classical pieces, fine jewelry pieces, etc. for both men and women. Production is purposely limited in order to achieve an exceptional degree of precision. Constantly in pursuit of technical innovations while striving to express its artistic foundations, the brand creates outstanding models for genuine enthusiasts and collectors. The “Métiers d’Art Les Masques” collection, created last year, symbolises the spirit that embodies the company. Not only does

the collection bring to the fore the work of the engraver through genuine tribal masks loaned by the Barbier Mueller museum that have each been reproduced in miniature on the dial of a watch, it also exploits technology because the movement allows the time to be read without any hands. Vacheron Constantin has succeeded not only in highlighting its heritage, but also in marrying aesthetics and a world-class technique to produce extraordinary creations. A spirit of openness and a desire for excellence, combined with unfailing enthusiasm, have consistently enhanced the reputation of the company. Vacheron Constantin, which celebrated its quarter millennium two years ago, remains everfaithful to its motto: “Do better if possible, which is always possible”.


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sur la terre spotlight

with Rasha Alayan of Veleno You may never have heard of Veleno before, but trust us when we say that its name will no doubt be on the lips of Qatar jewellery junkies for many years to come. To discover why the intriguingly named Veleno is such a unique experience, Sur La Terre sat down with the woman behind the store, Rasha Alayan.


sur la terre spotlight

We know that Veleno is a relatively new jewellery house, and one that is building a strong buzz for its unique style. For those not familiar with the name, could you tell us something about the brand? What is your history? What are some of the items our readers might find in Veleno at Royal Paza? I have always had a passion for jewellery and accessories that women of all ages use on a daily basis to complement their outfits, as well as the events they attend. During my travels, I always used to keep my eyes open to unique designs and ideas from all around the world. I was interested in everything from jewellery, handbags, decorative objects and all kinds of artwork. I decided to implement my passion by opening Veleno Boutique to enable me to work with all those interesting designers that I met during my travels and to display their unique jewellery, handbags and other fine wares. The range of jewellery that is now on display in Veleno includes rings, bracelets, earrings, pendants, cufflinks and very unique objects from Gavang and handmade handbags from Beavaldes.

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sur la terre spotlight

In the world of fine jewellery, there are many big names, especially here in Qatar. For those used to other established jewellery houses, can you tell us what exactly makes Veleno unique? What makes it special? The organic design of jewellery displayed in Veleno is based on shapes from nature, transformed into beautifully made jewellery. This is what gives these items its uniqueness and special touch. The great advantage of wearing jewellery from Veleno is that their shapes were designed in a way that ensures they will never go out of fashion. Their organic shapes are timeless, and will attract the attention from young teens to older mature women. As most of the jewellery in Veleno has no precious stones or diamonds, it makes them affordable to everyone who would like to wear something eye catching and beautiful without having to pay a fortune. Is it important for Veleno to establish itself here in Qatar? Why did you choose Qatar as the site for your flagship store? Do you have any plans to expand within the region? My objective is to open a couple of Veleno Boutiques in various markets, but of course it was my priority to open the first in Qatar. I have lived here for the last 10 years and have had the pleasure of knowing and socializing with many Qatari ladies. It was clear that the Qatari woman has a very high level of taste and standard, and enjoys having something

unique. Mainly for this reason, I knew it would be the best test for Veleno to open the first boutique in Qatar. From here, we can learn from the customer’s feedback about Veleno and its products in order to improve and perfect its concept and the range of products that Veleno will represent. The success of Veleno in Qatar would definitely mean that Veleno will succeed in other markets. You are based in the Royal Plaza shopping center in Doha, which houses many big name luxury brands. Can you tell us something about the actual store space? What feelings or emotions are you trying to stir with the layout that has been chosen? How will people feel when they come to the store and why is that important? Veleno Boutique is 76sqm in size, it has been designed in a way to make sure that the products stand out and speak to the viewer as soon as she/he steps into Veleno. The complete floor and walls of Veleno are of slate stone with a very rough finishing. A small corner breaks this roughness with walls covered in colorful panels and draped in soft textiles. The Ivy leaf print that covers the walls represents the name of the store, Veleno, which means “poison” in Italian. The whole idea behind covering the walls with rough slate stone is to show the viewer the natural beauty of the jewellery being created, particularly in its origin of shape, which is at the same time rough and strong.


sur la terre spotlight

What collections are on display or for sale within Veleno? Are they all produced in-house or are you working with big name designers? Are there any particular collections that we should look out for when setting foot into the shop? Currently what is on sale in Veleno is Gavang jewellery from Thailand and Beavaldes handbags from the Philippines. Within the next 6 months, a new brand will be added from Paris, but I prefer to keep the name of that brand a surprise until we display them in Veleno. Until now, all jewelry displayed in Veleno is Sterling Silver, which is plated in either yellow or pink gold, or black rhodium. The new range will include 18k solid gold jewellery to satisfy the taste of customers who are true gold connoisseurs. As the idea of Veleno started from me discovering beautiful things during my travels, I will assure you that there will always be new additions to the line of products in the store. I am confident that there will always be new things out there for me to discover and share with our customers.

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1/31/09 2:21:49 PM


sur la terre special lifestyle

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A Sea of Time! What defines a superyacht? Longer, wider and more expensive tends to be the rule, and there’s no credit crunch in the world of luxury yachting. In the 60’s, a 25-meter boat was considered a yacht. Today a 50-meter vessel is more or less looked upon as a “little boat” says Bernard D’Alessandri, General Secretary of Monaco Yacht Club.

Text: Margaret Kemp Photography: All rights reserved


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sur la terre special lifestyle

< MALTESE FALCON . 88 m. Perini Navi. Yildiz Gemi Shipyard, Tuzia,Istanbul, Turkey. Built under the supervision of the English company Insensys and Dutch company Gerard Dijkstra & Partners >

>>> Consider Feadship Van Lent’s (now part of LVMH) 160 meter vessel, “Secret”. With four helipads (two more than Paul Allen’s Octopus!) and all the latest toys, it costs owner Roman Abramovich $3,250 a night to dock at, say, Porto Cervo, Sardinia. Add to that the $1,300 in tips and the $100,000 fuel bill (she takes 56,000 litres) and the good ship Secret is hot to trot. Mr Abramovich is about to launch L’Eclipse, the world’s largest mega/ giga-yacht at 167 meters. It has built in defence systems against pirates and terrorists and boasts a yellow submarine that can dive to 52 meters. The billionaire’s invoice will be in the region of $390 million, which he will be delighted to pay when shipbuilders Blohm & Voss say it’s ready. Hand in hand with chic yacht owners and their guests comes designer clothes and gorgeous jewellery. When vintage champagne and haute cuisine is being served they must look the part. Fawaz Gruosi, founder of de GRISOGONO says: “When a woman wears my jewellery on a boat it can look more elegant than in any other place.” The ‘King of Diamonds’, Laurence Graff, agrees: “Women love wearing diamonds and yachts are the perfect setting for our exquisite pieces of jewellery.” It is not only women whose look gets noticed on deck. The men are considered only as chic as their wrist-wear, whether it is Blancpain’s Fifty Fathoms, Breguet’s Aeronavale or a limited edition timepiece from Adler, Leon Hatot or Avakian.

< RICHARD MILLE 015 Navi Cup Timepiece >


sur la terre special lifestyle

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< RIVA 115 Athena >

< AQUANAUT LUCE small size “Pure White” Patek Philippe > < RIVA 115 Athena >

Certain timepieces become synonymous with the sea, and Richard Mille’s revolutionary new wave ideas are no exception. Among his creations is the RM 015 which draws its inspiration closely from Perini Navi’s $100 million clipper, the luxury sailing yacht, Maltese Falcon. “The decks, hull shape, windlass, pulleys, screws and various marine details of Maltese Falcon are reflected in numerous structures of the RM 015 watch,” explains Mille. “In the shape of the hands and parts of the movement such as the tourbillon and central bridges, as well as the tourbillion cage itself.”

The Aquanaut collection by Patek Philippe comes in three sizes, Large, Medium and Small, so there’s one for each member of the family. This sleek steel sports watch has a water resistant composite material strap, a first for Patek. Who wouldn’t want to take Harry Winston’s Ocean Diver, from the Ocean Riva 115 Athena Collection, on board. For the ladies, the first woman’s watch with Zalium setting, the Lady Z, is inspired by the mythical goddess Luna. Many of the above are on the wrists of visitors to The Monaco Yacht Show (MYS), which is held each September at Port Hercule.


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sur la terre special lifestyle

< WALLYPOWER 118’. Rodriquez Intermarine. Edmiston & Company >

< WALLYPOWER 118’. Rodriquez Intermarine. Edmiston & Company >

The event is both an exciting showcase of international yachting and a reference for the best. Luc Petavino, CEO of MYS says: “The number of yachts under construction today is four times that of ten years ago, supply cannot keep up with demand as the number of high net-worth individuals increases by thousands each year and their fortunes grow by tens, if not hundreds, of millions of euros.

“Two figures sum up the state and potential of this market: 2,000 and 200,000. The former is the number of superyachts, costing €36 million ($46.7 million) and over, at present sailing the high seas. The latter is the number of people able to buy themselves superyachts!” So, with Petavino’s words in your ears, you have a wish list, but where to begin? A stunning choice to make a grand entrance at any port is the 50-

< LADY Z, Zalium serti. Harry Winston >


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meter Mangusta 165. It is priced round $26 million and International entrepreneur Jamie Packer has one, so you would be in good company. Created by Rodriguez Group, it is the world’s largest open yacht and made its debut at the Cannes Boat Show in 2008, towering over everything in the harbour. Rodriguez Group hopes to deliver two Mangustas by 2010. They’re not saying to whom, but, if you can’t get on the waiting list, the Leopard 36m may be worth considering. It’s a semi-custom fibreglass twin-diesel vessel, offering exhilarating performance for a price tag of round $12.1 million. At Cannes Festival de la Plaisance (September 2008) the refined lines of Ferretti and Mochi Craft yachts created the backdrop to an A-list soiree and runway show entitled “Italian Excellence”, held in collaboration with La Perla and Bulgari. Ferretti (founded by Norberto Ferretti in 1968) today have a unique portfolio of nine of the most exclusive brands in the nautical world. Ferretti, Pershing, Itama, Bertram, Riva, Apreamare, Mochi Craft, CRN and Custom Line. For chartering, constructing, buying or selling, Edmiston & Company, founded in 1996, is the star name in the luxury yachting world. “We serve an international client base through an extensive network of offices including Monaco, London, New York, Mexico City, Golfe Juan, Antibes, Dubai and Athens,” says company President Jamie Edmiston. Working only with the finest yachts, shipyards and designers Edmiston’s in-depth knowledge of the yachting industry ensures that its clients are in the most competitive and advantageous position when it comes to every element of yachting. < OCEAN DIVER. Harry Winston >

< PRINCESS MARIANA 114’8’’, Royal Denship. Edmiston & Company >

Legendary vessels such as TV, Wally Power, Be Cool, Scherazade are for sale or charter. The stylish six-deck Princess Mariana, with her recent $15.6 million re-fit is ready for charter ($850,000 a week). When the helicopter leaves, the helipad becomes a golf driving range with a giant screen that offers a selection of well known courses from which to virtually tee-off.


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With a price range between $1.75 and $2.75 million, a Fleming Yacht is an exciting acquisition. Built in Tung Hwa yard in Southern Taiwan, the vessels are marketed exclusively through California based Fleming. The company’s offices are situated at New Port Beach where the annual “Fall Big Boat Show” is a highlight of the boating calender. Tony Fleming, a former boat builder and passionate yachtsman, explains that the personal touch is important when creating perfection. “I’m hands-on and get involved in the design and construction of every boat, I like it that way,” he says.

< PERSHING 80>

< PERSHING 80>

These days a life at sea is a lot to do with “Green Attitude” and “Carbon Neutrality”. Paolo Vitelli, President of Azimut-Benetti Group, says Azimut was the first yacht company in the world to adopt an infusion system in the construction process that lays the fibreglass in a vacuum to allow better absorption and disposal of emissions. “We should be asking questions about the reality of our commitment to sustainable development and to protecting the environment,” urges Vitelli. “Crews the world over are very close to nature and should be concerned with the environmental impact on a daily basis.”

The Port Adriano project in Mallorca, Spain, is designed by by Philippe Starck, with the deepest respect for the natural environment and sea floor. From May 2010, 82 new moorings will enable the Port to receive 20 and 60-meter yachts. Big enough for Starck’s latest design, “Sigma”, which is a futuristic concept that resembles a submarine. Many renowned architects and interior designers are turning their hands to yachts. The likes of Christian Liagre, Gae Aulenti, Giorgetto Giugiaro, Jean-Michel Wilmotte and Alberto Pinto have all dipped thier toes in the water,

< TYPE XX AÉRONAVALE f ly-back chronograph in steel. Breguet >


sur la terre special lifestyle

so to speak. Sir Norman Foster’s cutting edge design for Manoc Yacht Club resembles a yacht. The 800 members (200 on the waiting list) expect to move in at the end of 2011. Foster’s latest project is the Yacht Plus 40 Signature Series. A new concept in shared ownership presented at Monaco Yacht Show 2008. Foster has left his mark before, in 1993, with Izanami, a 190-foot yacht, still admired today. “It’s a very stimulating initiative for me,” explains the architect. “My designs must naturally be flexible in order to satisfy the various requirements of the shipyards, it’s a great challenge.”

< Graff yacht collection jewels >

< PERSHING 115 >

The International Ventura Group, based in Spain and the UK, cannot confirm the rumours that pop superstar, Robbie Williams, has recently acquired an Athena 115, the most expensive Riva in the company’s range and is calling it “MY RW”. Ventura, main dealers for Riva, Pershing, Ferretti, Mochi and Custom Line, have many celebrity clients, “but we like to be discreet with names,” explains General Manager, Michael Newton-Woof. “The Athena has that Riva Magic, it can sleep 24 and has a crew of eight,” he adds. “We are very proud of all our brands and have a bespoke service to fit the right yacht with the right customer. “If their taste is

< PERSHING 115 >

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Maserati, for instance, then I would suggest a Pershing 80 (approximately priced around $5.6 million) designed by Fulvio de Simone, which made its’ debut in Palma, Mallorica in July 2008.” With the yacht’s next generation profile and contemporary interior furniture by Poltron Frau, the Pershing 80 is destined to become a classic of it’s kind. He quips: “It is no wonder they named the brand after a missile!” Dubai Boat Show 3-7 Mar 09 www.dubaiboatshow.com


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sur la terre accessories

Sweet Stones Production: Julie Cerf Photography: Ian Abela @ Visionairs In Art www.ianabela.com Model: Polina Askeri @ Karin Make-up: Sandra Jeannin @ Powder & Shine Hair: Audrey Lamber Studio: Pin-up


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Watch “Chocolat” yellow gold CHANEL Ring in yellow gold with diamonds, citrine, amethyst, pink garnet CHRISTIAN DIOR Ring “camélia aquatique” in yellow gold and citrine CHANEL Ring “Mademoiselle” in yellow gold CHANEL


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Rings BOUCHERON; DIOR Necklace BULGARI Earrings VAN CLEEF & ARPELS


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Long necklace “Alhambra” in yellow gold and coral VAN CLEEF & ARPELS


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sur la terre accessories

Earrings â&#x20AC;&#x153;Cerisesâ&#x20AC;? in yellow gold, diamonds and coral DIOR


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Rings “Exquises Confidences” in yellow gold BOUCHERON


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Brooch “Lady bird” CARTIER


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Bracelet with white and yellow diamonds HARRY WINSTON


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sur la terre all that glitters

Gilding the Lilly Pad Finding Luxury in the Most Unexpected Places

Stop. Don’t listen to the so-called “experts” who say we’re heading for some “global financial meltdown.” For these speculative spoilsports, Sur La Terre has one thing to say: Pish-Posh! Despite the worldwide collapse of nearly every conceivable market, sweet Mother Luxury has found a way to slip through the current economic squeeze and dip her glossy fingertips into even the most ordinary areas of life. Do you “need” these luxurious items? Probably not. Are they ridiculously excessive? Clearly! But, despite their admitted uniqueness, they remind us that in the face of everything, there is no escaping extravagance; no denying decadence. Ludicrous luxury lovers, this one’s for you. Welcome to the gilded lilly pad.

>>> We begin this case study of how luxury has permeated the banal by first exploring the digital world. Quite frankly, technology is abuzz with luxury, and like many things within the world of glamour, it’s not necessarily the inside that counts. Take, for example, the humble, yet now ubiquitous, MP3 player. Just when you thought it was safe to hit the streets with your sparkly new Nano, in swaggers Russian-Canadian billionaire Alex Shnaider to up the ante. Not wishing to settle for the everyday mobile music experience, the owner of the Midlands Formula 1 team commissioned the good people at TrekStor to craft a unique version of their i.Beat Organix MP3 player.

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The fact that it contains all of the typical features of a modern music device may have something to do with its $20,000 price tag, but we’re betting it has more to do with all of those precious stones and metals. Encased in 18 carats of gold, this Organix model is also hand-set by German Jewelers Wenthe with 63 diamonds and a decorative chain showing off an aquamarine gem. Its heart may not beat with unsurpassed technology, but it does pound with overwhelming luxury. That’s something we can appreciate. To learn more about the specs of this spectacle, head over to www.trekstor.de/en/

1/31/09 2:44:52 PM


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Some people may scoff at the idea that luxury and cleanliness can go hand in hand, but those naysayers are now going to have to suck back their protests thanks to a new era in household appliances. The regular model of Electrolux’s Ergorapido model has already won many awards for its cleaning prowess, including both the Red Dot Design Award and the IF Design Award in 2008, but now it has a whole new reason to show off. Thanks to Swarovski and prominent Polish fashion designer Łukasz Jemioł, the Ergorapido has gone from amazingly helpful to absolutely fabulous. Elegantly decorated with 3,730 specially-chosen Swarovski crystals from the popular Elements collection, this thing is anything but humble. No longer is vacuuming the house a laborious task. In fact, with the Ergorapido Crystal, cleaning your carpet is really more like sauntering down the red carpet. Feel free to don your favorite evening attire, be it elegant gown or top hat and tails, and wave to a pretend audience of gawking paparazzi as you maneuver vacuum’s answer to the Bentley all around your abode. Check out everything that the new Electrolux has to offer at www.electrolux.com

The MP3 player is not the only digital device to be gilded to the gills; there is also the equally ubiquitous mobile phone. There are new cellular technologies popping up seemingly everyday, and just as many physical enhancements to go with them. However, very few have been taken to the excessive extreme as the Diamond Crypto Smartphone designed by Peter Aloisson. Built with the Moscow elite in mind, it boasts exclusive encryption technology that allegedly prevents such scandalous activities as kidnapping, racketeering and blackmail, not to mention keeping out the prying eyes of pesky “corrupted state officials.” For us, however, it’s the price tag of the diamond model that truly arrests attention. This phone costs 1.3 million dollars. Decked out as it is in a shell of platinum with hints of 18 carat white and pink gold, and showing off 50 diamonds, including 10 of the rare blue variety, this is really no surprise. To learn how you too can safely dial in style, check out the designer’s personal website at www.aloisson.com


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While we’re on the subject of techno-luxury, let’s not forget to mention something for the high-tech homebodies. For those of us who are obsessed with expense, but are more couch potato than mover-and-shaker, you can now count your lucky stars ... literally. The star field frame around the Yalos LCD TV is more than just a cosmic effect, as it makes this 40 inch, high definition television the most expensive of its kind in the world. The little points of light are not just window dressing, but actually 160 diamonds,

with a minimum net weight of 20 carats, all painstakingly placed on a white gold-plated panel. This gives the often touted television term “crystal clear clarity” a whole new meaning. The cool design and precious materials pushes this model to the limits of both practicality and price, presented at the IFA electronics fair as costing $130,000. With the new Yalos Diamond, you’ll be changing more than just the channel, you’ll be changing your very lifestyle. Click over to www.yalos.it to see what the Diamond has to offer.


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While technology is one of the foremost areas to be transformed by the grandeur of glitz, it is by no means the only realm touched by glamour. Art has always intersected with the road of luxury, but even the exorbitant ways of the past pale in comparison to the extravagance of modernity. From the very beginning of his career, Damien Hirst was as prominent as he was unconventional. Even His Royal Highness Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani was impressed enough to buy a seminal work of Hirst’s entitled Lullaby Spring, which garnered the artist’s first auction record for the most expensive work of art by a living artist. His most recent work, entitled For the Love of God, is dripping in equal parts morbidity and opulence. The $28 million it took to produce the piece includes a human skull, over which is cast a platinum skin before finally being encrusted in 8,601 absolutely flawless diamonds. The weight of the gems comes to 1,106.18 carats and includes the centrepiece of a large, pear-shaped pink diamond. Now that’s what we call art! The end result is not only deeply stirring, but also jaw-dropping, as its final price of sale was over $100 million. This price re-established Hirst’s record for pulling down the biggest price of any living artist. Its final resting place is in the White Cube gallery in London, where its real teeth shimmer in a glinting grotesque grin.

Still not impressed? Well don’t worry, because a lavish lifestyle is not restricted within the confines of the inedible. In fact, the culinary world has never been off limits to luxury, but in today’s society, casual diners have a new gold standard for which to aspire. Known for its affluent clientele and fashionable fare, New York’s Serendipity restaurant officially surpassed itself in an effort to make its 50th anniversary celebration truly golden. It is called The Grand Opulence Sundae, and it is the crown jewel of ice cream culture. The Grand Opulence is formed by taking five scoops of the purest vanilla bean ice cream from Tahiti and Madagascar, and then covering it with 23 carats of edible gold. If that wasn’t enough, it is then showered in a drizzle of exceptional sauces, sprinkled with nuggets of rare Chuao chocolate and further garnished with candied Parisian fruits, expensive truffles, gold dragets, Marzipan cherries, and Italian Amedei Porceleana. Wait, we’re not finished. Sitting like a tiara on this queen of confectionaries is a tiny bowl filled with Grande Passion Caviar, bathing in a small pool of passion fruit liquor. The decadent dessert is served with a Ron Ben-Israel sugar flower, gilded of course, and eaten out of a Baccarat Harcourt crystal goblet with an 18 carat gold spoon. Those wishing to literally consume excellence can purchase this delicacy for a bill of $1,000, which is really a small price to pay for a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to feast on fabulousness.

Even in these trying times, excess is far from dead. It has instead become ubiquitous, permeating the comforts of daily life. Those consumers still craving the finer things need look no further than the everyday objects around them or in the aesthetic offerings of modern art. From the

televisions we watch to the food we eat, luxury can be found anywhere. So sit back and relax, pause your thousand dollar MP3 player, answer your million dollar phone and dive into your golden chocolate sundae. Thankfully, luxury has indeed survived, and it is everywhere.


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sur la terre modestars rock

< THE WITTLESBACH DIAMOND, a 35.56 carat stone hold by Christie’s since 1694 >

ROCK STARS Photography: All rights reserved

Some of the most popular names in luxury today do not belong to hollywood starlets, members of royal families or famous musicians. No, these names belong instead to a much more exclusive group: the precious diamonds and gemstones that have been born in utter brilliance and cut by human hands to sheer shimmering perfection. Sur la Terre would like to introduce you to the top five Celebrity Stones in the world today. Ladies and gentlemen, meet the ROCK Stars!

The Mogul Emerald Carved in 1695, the Mogul (or Mughal) Emerald is dubbed such because it is the only known carved stone of its kind from the Mughal period. Weighing an impressive 217.80 carats, the magnificent emerald was cut under the reign of Emperor Aurangzeb, last of the great Mughal leaders that ruled over India. The intricate Arabic inscription on the face of the stone is a Shi’a Deccani prayer, while etched on the back is a set of poppy flowers, a typical decorative design at that time. The stone was auctioned at Christie’s of London for $2.2 million, and eventually came to find a home in the brand new Museum of Islamic Art right here in Doha.


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The Tiffany Yellow Possibly excluding Audrey Hepburn, there is no other image so closely tied to the famous Tiffany’s name. The Tiffany Yellow was found around 1877 and has since become the shimmering figurehead of the luxurious jewellery house. In fact, many believe that the 128.54 carat stone was what made the name famous in the first place, particularly after a visit by Chinese Viceroy Li Hung-Chang, who requested to see the gem after hearing about it, thus propelling it into mass fascination. Now mounted in an iconic golden bird setting by Jean Schlumberger, it is without a doubt one of the finest and most recognisable gems in the world today.

The Hope The Hope diamond is the largest dark blue diamond in the world, and it is unquestionably the planet’s most famous of its kind. The 45.52 carat, steel blue diamond is known mostly for its mystery, its intrigue and of course, its curse! Believed to be the former eye of an Indian idol from a temple on the Coleroon river, it was found by French merchant, Jean Baptiste Tavernier and passed down through his (admittedly unlucky) family before being recut into the shape we know today. Most of the curse has been proven utter poppycock, but the fact that some of the most unfortunate people in history have worn it (including Marie Antoinette) is an interesting thing to ponder whilst staring into its flawless depths.

The Star of India The legendary Star of India is the sapphire’s answer to the Hope Diamond, but without the messy business of a curse. Found in Sri Lanka about 300 years ago, the 563.36 carat star sapphire is believed to be over 2 billion years old. Its age, along with its distinctive shape and cosmic center star are enough to make this stone one in a million, which is probably what led to its next bout with infamy. On October 29, 1964, the Star was stolen along with other well-known stones by now-famous thief, Jack “Murph the Surf” Murphy in a daring burglary that led to his arrest. Luckily, the star was later recovered and once again shines brightly in New York City.

The American Golden Topaz Like seemingly all things from the Americas, the American Golden Topaz is big. Really big. Tipping the scales at 22,892.50 carats (4.5785 kg), it is the largest yellow topaz in the world. Originally from Brazil, the rough stone took Leon Agee two whole years to cut into its present 172-faceted shape. It can now be viewed in all of its gigantic glory at the National History Museum in Washington D.C.


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sur la terre iced out

Iced Out Ice. It used to be such a simple thing, free from the grasp of pop culture. But when it

was subsumed into “blingo,” it became something different. Remember when “ice cube” just described a small block of

frozen water? The same thing happened with Ice T. Let’s not even go into Vanilla Ice. But ice has come back into fashion, this time under its own steam. So, grab a cold one and read on about how the classic cold convenience is cooling out the luxury world. Get ready to get Iced Out. Text: Leen Qablawi Photography: All rights reserved


sur la terre iced out

>>> If bottled water exquisitely handcrafted with Swarovski Crystals and winners of global diamond Pentawards were not enough, then the H2O elitist in you will be pleased to know we are still running. We’re not just talking about the next frontier for bottled water. We have coasted onto something more stubborn, more pompous. Sailing down the temperature strait (and perhaps up the derisory one), we have anchored in a fresh and exclusive vogue of ice-chichism. Ice who? Well, is ice-snobbery any better a label? In an effort to avoid any name-calling, generic ice is a thing of the past – something like shaggy UGG boots. Celebrities from Kelly Clarkson to Ms. Whoopi Goldberg are clasping onto a la mode designer water bottles. With ‘endorsement’ written all over, why should an ice cube still be just an ice cube? It boils down to a metamorphosis - and beyond just a physical one. Ice has come out with a rebranding of itself, ditching its drink side-kick status to expose a more autonomous and selfesteemed persona of its own. Marketed as a

food and contemplated as an art, ice is becoming an increasingly important component of your drink. With its budding grandiose comes a selfproclaimed birthright to recognition, demanded from mixologists and homemakers alike. It was an oafish time we lived in, what with kettle-filled-waffle ice trays, and stuffy freezer-tang swigs. As our liquids became more refined, and our bills more multiple, it was only a natural progression for ice to grow in prominence and standing. Out went the tawdry moulds and in came the Gucci ice sculpture; a $90 plastic tray with G-shaped holes, quenchable with a spell of ozoned, ultra-violeted, micro-filtered water. And with methods like double-freezing (once at low temperature, then again at lower, and upside down to avoid air bubbles), it became possible to home-make a luscious taste of the Arctic. But for the less than keen aficionadas of DIY, Diamond Ice and other proud leading lights in the bottled water industry are offering one-way ice cube trays filled directly at source. Kind of like packaged ice, but promising more swank.

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The architect of the perfect one-inch cube, each cube a seamless replica of clarity and solidity, is the pioneering Kold Draft. More than just a pretty face, this ice-maker produces cubes with a greater surface area for faster drink cooling and slower melting (and dilution); the square ice of choice to complete a strong drink. Yet it is in the ice connoisseur’s playground where the true vitality of the ice revolution continues to burn. Aspiring bartenders and mixologists make sure to harmonise ice and drink. Visual appeasement aside, a perfect match dilutes the strong, tempers the sour and tames the sweet. The crushed variety works brilliantly in juleps and swizzles – and beautiful if had within 10-12 minutes. Chiseled ice is another story; a dexterous chipper can snazzy your drink with a diamond in the rough. Japan’s cocktail gurus have created the B-flat ice ball; round and smooth, sometimes encapsulating flora for that extra panache. Some Voss with your Hoshizaki cube? Perhaps we’re not quite so engulfed, but this new-found ice obsession is testament to the existence of a dynamic and progressive luxury culture; one that is revamping established products and pushing them to new limits. The future of ice, as an art or a food or dare we relegate it to a mere ice cube, is, like its peers in the orb of luxury, uncertain. But what you can safely bet your money on is a growing optimism, if not downright expectation, in the urban realm to appreciate and distinguish between the different ice forms. Excessive? Maybe. Or perhaps not so hard to swallow, when for each drink, there is now that flawless form and composition of fine crystal, proud to drop in as an elegant equal.


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sur la terre chapters mode

My Love Affair with Jewelry

Gems in Myth, Legend and Lore

Girl with a Pearl Earring

While many Hollywood starlets often tend to drape themselves in fine jewellery, there are not many examples where that affinity becomes an outright obsession. Elizabeth Taylor is the exception. The classic movie star has lived a life of luxury, obtaining many things throughout her long and celebrated career, including a litany of awards, a platoon of husbands and an almost immeasurable amount of fine jewellery. In 2002, she immortalised her expansive collection in her autobiographical tome, My Love Affair with Jewelry. This scripture of splendor paves her entire career, from budding star to cinematic icon, in a roadway of diamonds and gold. Taylor has accumulated a personal stash that includes 33 carat Krupp Diamond ring and the 69.42 carat Taylor-Burton Diamond. Readers will not only be dazzled by the hundreds of stunning photographs showcasing these pieces, but also by the words of Taylor herself, whose beaming grin shines through the print itself. It is immediately evident that this is her life, her obsession and her true passion. As she herself has said about the book, I’m here to take care of [my collection] and to love it, for we are only temporary custodians of beauty.”

Do you often fall off your horse whilst going for a nice ride through the desert? If so, wear turquoise for protection. Did you cut yourself while handling your brand new diamond ring? Forget the band-aid and reach for a ruby, which is known to have healing powers. Gems may be mostly appreciated for their inherent beauty and expense, but there are some societies, both ancient and modern, who prize them not for their appearance, but their supernatural properties. In his book, Gems in Myth, Legend and Lore, Bruce G. Knuth explores the magical world of gemstones by studying the power each one has, where it comes from and how the ability was discovered. In his search, Knuth has unearthed many stones in traditional stories and literature, and has formed one of the most comprehensive lists of amulets, talismans and other powerful ornaments in the world. The book has received much acclaim for its in-depth exploration and was even shortlisted for the prestigious Benjamin Franklin Award in 2000. We highly suggest you pick up a copy and discover for yourself whether that amber necklace might be hiding a secret within its golden depths. Who knows, you could be the proud owner of your very own crystalized fairy!

Originally a painting by Johannes Vermeer, The Girl with a Pearl Earring is one of the most captivating works to grace the world of art. Originally, this intrigue was based on the girl’s beguiling look to the viewer. This mystery was the motivation for Tracy Chevalier, who penned a book under the same title as the painting. It instantly became a best seller after its release in 1999. The historical novel tells the story of Griet, the poor teenage girl seen in the painting. The young Griet is forced to take a job after her already poor family suffers further setback when her father suffers an accident and can no longer work. Her parents find her a job as a maid at the Vermeer house, where, thanks to a collection of very different characters, including Vermeer himself, she learns much about the value of life, the price of love, the validity of art and of course, the importance of fine jewels. The book was made popular by further exposure when it was adapted into an immensely popular Hollywood movie starring Scarlett Johansson and Colin Firth, which also won many awards. The title has found further prominence in 2008 in a London stage play.

by Elizabeth Taylor

by Bruce G. Knuth

by Tracy Chevalier


sur la terre tunes mode

Diamonds and Pearls Perfectly Clear Prince & The New Power Generation

Jewel

Let’s be honest, Prince is pure class. Not only can the man write, sing and perform nearly every musical instrument you can think of, he is also addicted to luxury. Despite his somewhat “revealing” choices in personal attire, Prince has always been known as a fashion icon who knows his stuff when it comes to elegance. Just look at the title of his now classic 1991 album: Diamonds and Pearls. In the piles of garbage produced in the early 90’s, this was a rare gem. As is no surprise with Prince, this is a premium example of how divergent musical styles can and should be mixed. Soul, pop and rock are all seamlessly married together, with some funk rubbed in for good measure. With timelessly singable tracks like Cream, Insatiable and of course, Diamonds and Pearls, the uniquely mixed album jumped to top spots in all the charts and reaffirmed Prince’s presence as a heavy-hitter in the music world. Every music lover should own at least one Prince album, and this, his thirteenth offering, may be a good place for newbies to start. So go throw on something purple, strap on that diamond and pearl choker you’re hiding, and dive headlong into a world of mellow tones and rhythmic beats that only Prince can provide.

Okay, we admit this one is a bit of a stretch; but we’d be remiss if we didn’t mention an album from a person actually named Jewel. Her latest album, Perfectly Clear, not only goes perfectly with her name, but is quite a departure from her earlier works. Her first and debatably most famous album, Pieces of You, was more of a coffeehouse folk crossover with pop than anything else. Since then, she’s dabbled between the two styles with varying degrees of success. However, with Perfectly Clear, she goes all out and all country. Albeit under mixed reviews, the album has received decent recognition from old fans and country music lovers alike, and even hit the top of the U.S. Billboard Top Country Albums list. That’s not bad for a first outing. Despite what you may think of the genre, Jewel’s voice is a rapture in melody and she can croon with the best of them, particularly in the hit singles Stronger Woman and I do. If you’re interested in seeing Jewel shine in a completely different light, this is the one to check out, at least until her next album, tentatively titled Jewel’s Lullaby Album, comes out sometime this year.

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Home Before Dark Neil Diamond

In a world where seemingly anyone can land a golden record, Neil Diamond is the true alchemist of music. With a voice that’s as slick, as smooth and as cool as his name, the silvertongued singer has melted hearts for over 30 years. With classic songs, like Sweet Caroline, I am...I said, Hello Again and Girl You’ll be a Woman Soon, Mr. Diamond has established himself as a crown jewel in the treasure chest of music. However, even though these hits are now synonymous with excellence, Neil has never tasted top honours from the music charts; that is, until now. His 2008 album, Home Before Dark, effectively polished the shine of Diamond, this time sending the golden boy of Brooklyn to number one in both the charts for the first time in his career. Thanks also to legendary producer Rick Rubin, who previously worked to reinvigorate the careers of such icons as Johnny Cash, Home Before Dark has received rave reviews from just about every major critic and is now a modern classic. It also means that, at age 67, Diamond is the oldest man in history to hold a number one spot on the charts. Take THAT, Bob Dylan! Just like the precious gem of his namesake, this Diamond doesn’t fade with age.


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Diamonds Are Forever

The Dark Crystal

Romancing the Stone

It’s just bad form to have a movie section in our Watch and Jewellery edition and NOT mention a Bond film. For this article, we have decided to go with something older and with a bit more flash. The title doesn’t hurt either. Diamonds Are Forever stars Sean Connery in the role of Britain’s martini-sipping, kiss-stealing super spy as he travels throughout America to foil the nefarious schemes of Ernst Stavro Blofeld and his heinous henchmen. What schemes you ask? Why, capturing world domination by building a diamond-powered laser canon atop a space-bound satellite, of course! In the end, Bond does manage to thwart Blofeld’s evil plot by employing quick thinking, Brit wit, and, dare we say it, a moon buggy. Despite its humorous tone, the film was a financial success, raking in a gross of $116 million worldwide. Plus, it taught us all that can also be used as a viable source for crystal-clean energy, particularly when powering world-shattering death rays. The soundtrack for the film also did well, and the title track by Shirley Bassey is still used as a melodic hint by women everywhere to remind men that their birthdays or anniversaries are coming up. Thanks, Shirley.

Jim Henson is mostly known for his puppetry work for television series like Sesame Street , Fraggle Rock and The Muppet Show. However, perhaps his finest work is the fantasy epic, The Dark Crystal. Released way back in 1982, the film tells the story of Thra, a peaceful world ruled by a race called the urSkeks. Disaster strikes when their al-powerful Crystal of Truth cracks and becomes tainted, transforming into the Dark Crystal. The fracture also causes the urSkeks to split into two races: the gentle urRu and the tyrannical Skeksis. It is up to Jen, a peaceful, elf-like creature known as a Gelfling, to realise his destiny and save the world by reuniting the crystal shard with the gem from which it was broken. This will reunite the Skeksis and urRu, and restore his broken world to harmony. The film was the first to be fully live-action without showing any humans onscreen. The puppeteering methods were groundbreaking and are still breathtaking. It had decent success at the box office, but would have done better if it hadn’t been for that thunder-stealing E.T., which was released the same year. A sequel to the movie is set for release in 2011.

Romancing the Stone is one of the cheesiest, most outrageous movies to ever come out of the 1980’s. Because of this, it’s also one of the best. With super-talent Robert Zemeckis at the helm, this cinematic gem was destined for greatness, and it didn’t disappoint. Like any great movie of that decade, the plot is simple. Joan Wilder (Kathleen Turner), a famous romance writer, receives a mysterious package from her dead brother-in-law, which turns out to be a ransom for her sister who has been kidnapped in Columbia. En route to delivering the package, she is kidnapped by the stereotypical and ridiculously-named villain, Zolo. She is then miraculously saved by career anti-hero, Jack T. Colton (Michael Douglas). The ransom is actually a treasure map leading to the legendary emerald known as El Corazon (The Heart). After many hair-raising chases and back and forth double-crossing, this classic film ends the only way it can: in a knock-down, dragout fight between Michael Douglas and an alligator. Beautiful. Although it was expected to be a huge flop, Romancing the Stone made $114 million at the box office, making this fine flick a true diamond in the rough.


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Jewellery Online

Beware of the Doghouse

The Watchery

As the name implies, www.jewelry.com is all about the stones. Bling-crazy browsers can scour the extensive search engine by type, stone, metal, price and promotional details to find the perfect accessory for their lives. Not only that, the truly obsessed can check out everything the world of jewellery has to offer, including a gallery of celebrities and their favourite pieces, a section devoted to the very latest in fashion news and an area that explores the historical and modern renown of famous jewels. The site is regularly updated, so it has the freshest news and reviews; plus it’s easy to navigate, so even the most technologically inept treasure hunter can comfortably have a poke around. Many of the top brands and distributors are listed, and even if you’re not looking for anything in particular, it’s great to just have a look around. Possibility, as they say, is priceless. For jewellery aficionados, this is the perfect place to buy, learn or simply stare in wonderment at everything that glitters in the world.

While you’re poring through the collection over at Jewelry.com, be sure to check out the Editor’s Picks section, which currently showcases an interesting little website that grabbed our attention. www.bewareofthedoghouse.com is admittedly oddly-named, and seemingly has nothing to do with either watch or jewellery. However, this tasty dish of a site has been set up by famous jewellery retailer JC Penny as a highly educational (and hilarious) learning tool to teach guys how to do right by their women, and avoid being tossed into exile for bad gift-giving decisions. The informative movie that has been posted on the page is very well done, and web surfers can either add or view current inmates of the doghouse. Luckily, it also tells repentant gentlemen how to escape their life of shameful imprisonment and reestablish a relationship of mutual understanding and respect. How, you ask? Through fine diamonds of course! Luckily, the folks at JCPenny have included helpful links about where to go, what to shop for and how much to pay. Now, even the most hapless boyfriend or husband can make amends for their poor choices. SPOILER: jewellery is always a better gift than a mop or a moustache waxer.

Launched in 2002, www.thewatchery.com is the best place on the internet to research and purchase luxury timepieces. There are so many options on the site that it’s almost dizzying. You can search by brand, collection, specific features, materials, colour, shapes, styles and gender. It is one of the most customisable sites we’ve come across, and lets you choose elements like style, width, length and even percentage of discount within the smallest of degrees. The choice is literally endless, and it’s very easy to get lost in trying to view every available option. Luckily, the pictures are large, clear and very easy to judge from when it comes down to making that final decision. The deals on the site are more than most people would be able to imagine and authenticity is always guaranteed. The payment types are safe, diverse and the company is fully supported by most online shopping institutions, all of which gives buyers that little extra bit of consumer confidence. TheWatchery.com is consistently given top honours by evaluation sites for its ease, security and breadth, and it’s easy to see why. After getting lost in other similar yet lesser sites, we echo the company’s tag line that, “it’s about time.”


GENÈVE >

SUR LA TERRE MAGAZINE > GENÈVE SUR LA TERRE > NUMÉRO ONZE > AUTOMNE 2004 > TRIMESTRIEL > 10 CHF € 7 > ÉDITION GENÈVE

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