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Design by Matteo Thun

Based on the rectangular base evolve the washbasin variants, handrinse basin to furniture washbasin, offering a generous storage area and comfortable inner basin depth. Simplicity also rules in the bathroom furniture area. The trick is in the mix between open and closed areas: In this way, everything works airily and transparently. The refined 2/3 division of the wall unit is also continued with the vanity units.

DURASTYLE


February 2018 FASHION

Fashion Clippings p. 18 Beauty Clippings p. 20 Interview: Cindy Chao p. 22 Interview: Dima Rashid p. 26 Feature: Fashion Jewellery Trends p. 30 Photoshoot: Hitchcock Heroine p. 32 Interview: N By Natalie p. 38 Feature: BAZIC p. 40

LIFESTYLE

Feature: Epic Train Journeys p. 44 Person of FLAIR: Shiva Safai p. 48 Interview: Asser Yassin p. 50 Home: Haven in the Alps p. 54 Hotspot: Ai Restaurant p. 62 Happenings: Be My Valentine p. 64

REGULARS Editor’s Note p. 7 Happenings p. 10 FLAIR Loves p. 14

On the Cover Shiva Safai Photographer: Ben Miller MUA: Lyndsay Zavitz Hair Stylist: Eduardo


EDITOR’S NOTE

Celebrating Love

I

n the spirit of love, we bring you our first issue of the year and our annual Valentine’s edition. We kick off our love celebrations with our cover star, the lovely Shiva Safai. In an exclusive interview we talk to Shiva about her reality star fame, lifestyle, and how it feels to be part of the famous Hadid family clan.

It wouldn’t be the season of love without ogling over precious pieces of jewels. So for this issue we got up close with two jewelry designers extraordinaire: First up is renowned designer Cindy Chao who recently released her spectacular Art Jewel collection. Next is local and international favorite Dima Rashid who we spoke to following the unveiling of her Dreams of Gold collection. In the age of fast paced travel and instant gratification, airline travel has taken center stage. However, there is something incredibly romantic about leisurely train travel and travelling for the sake of the journey and not the destination. In “Epic Train Journeys”, Kate Dannies invites us to experience plush trains that evoke the glamor and luxury of a bygone era. Have a lovely month, Hind El Ramly editor@flair-magazine.com

MY PICKS FOR THE ISSUE

Hitchcock Heroine p. 32

N by Natalie p. 38

Gstaad Home p. 54

Valentine Happenings p. 64

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February EDITOR IN CHIEF

Ahmed I Hassan

MANAGING DIRECTOR

Hind El Ramly

EDITORIAL UK Editor Daniela Bonetto Editorial Consultant Kate Dannies Staff Writer Sarah Guirguis Staff Writer Nour Ibrahim Staff Writer Mohamed Taky Contributor Amy N Pugsley ART DIRECTOR & VIDEO EDITOR

Tony Atia

PR & SOCIAL MEDIA MANAGER

Bashayer Alridi

BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT MANAGER

Ismaeel Khoudeir

ADVERTISING & SALES MANAGER

Omneya El Awamry PHOTOGRAPHER

Hassan Ibrahim

FINANCIAL OPERATIONS MANAGER

Maged Azoz

OFFICE COORDINATOR

Christena Samir

DISTRIBUTION Distribution Officer Farid Sayed Distribution Officer Ahmed Ibrahim PRINTING |

Tel.

(+2)

INTERNATIONAL PRINTING HOUSE

CONTACTS Adress: Apt. 1, 11 Bahey el Din St., Off Giza St., Giza, Egypt 0235720632 Mob. (+2) 01000493100/200/300 Fax. (+2) 0235720632 INQUIRIES

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FLAIR TEAM

DANIELA BONETTO A psychology graduate who probably needed a therapist herself, Daniela decided that her form of expression was writing. Curiosity, tenacity and just enough vanity has brought her to desire ‘all things beautiful’ which she extends to in her lifestyle blog, “theinkedition.com” Excited about the world, her greatest pleasure is traveling and discovering new things.

BASHAYER ALRIDI An advertising and public relations graduate, Bashayer is incredibly passionate about movies. The social media enthusiast also has a knack for photography and is a makeup addict!

TONY ATIA NOUR IBRAHIM Student. Loves Star Wars, Harry Potter, and Comic books. Bakes for unhealthy amount of time.

“Don’t just make an eye catching design; create ideas to change minds.” With a passion for drawing and art, Tony started to design graphics at the age of 15. He loves the guitar ,the violin and the cello as well as reading and playing sports.

KATE DANNIES Kate is a writer an editor with a penchant for luxury, history, and politics, which she has found to surprisingly compatible. An adopted Cairene for six years, Kate currently lives in exile in Washington DC. 

OMNEYA SARAH GUIRGUIS EL AWAMRY For as long as she can remember, Sarah has had a passion for creative writing. Being on the lookout for inspiration anywhere she goes, she also has a knack for photography. She lives by the quote, “What is done in love is done well,” and believes that everyone’s potential is endless and worth being explored.

Our new Advertising & Sales Director has worked many years in the field of PR and communications. She believes that hard work and passion will lead you to success.

AMY N PUGSLEY Amy is the latest contributor to join the magazine. She is a Persian-Canadian international development specialist and an educator living in Cairo.

MAGED AZOZ Incredibly dedicated to his work, Maged’s passion is unmeasurable! Flair Magazine truly is his baby.

CHRISTENA SAMIR

Our new office coordinator studied information systems and computer programming. A self proclaimed shopaholic, Christena loves to travel and experience new things.

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HAPPENINGS

Trip Back in Time with Ahmad Tea Celebrating their authentic collection of tea flavours, the award winning Ahmad Tea hosted a colonial themed tea tasting party at Villa Belle Époque in Maadi. With ushers dressed in colonial themed outfits and an overall sophisticated atmosphere, the invitees relived the comfort and elegance of a bygone era while enjoying unforgettable moments with the unique tastes offered by Ahmad Tea. Representatives from Ahmad Tea’s Head Office in the UK, including Amir Bagheri, Head of Strategic Marketing, and Dominic Marriott, Tea Taster, welcomed the invitees with the perfect cups of tea, showcasing the heritage and exclusive quality of their products. The guests got to immerse themselves in the world of Ahmad Tea; hearing the Ahmad Tea story which began 30 years ago in Hampshire in England, while discovering what makes the quality of its tea so exquisite.

Brazilian Kitchen Party at Aqua e Luce Aqua e Luce Restaurant at Heliopolis & Towers Hotel had the pleasure of inviting the city’s key media figures along with Egyptian actors and actresses for an authentic Brazilian experience. Chef Eduardo was pleased to confidently satisfy the guests’ Brazilian food lust. The restaurant is known for its most authentic flavors and tastes of Brazil. The Gourmet salad, sushi and cheese bar are not the only intriguing part of the experience, you get to try 11 different juicy meat cuts; Tenderloin, filet mignon, top sirloin , short ribs, Alcatra, Picanha, Fraldinha, lamb, Brazilian sausages and so much more! Not only meat, you get to enjoy our special BBQ chicken, shrimps and salmon.

Mareotis Launch Event in Alex West Hosted at the heart of West Alexandria, Barons Court Sports & Leisure officially launched the latest phase of Alex West project “Mareotis”, in a night of dazzling glitz and glam at Alexandria’s largest convention center, Alexandrina Hall, located inside the project. Superstars Carole Samaha and Abu ignited the celebration, with more than 1,000 people in attendance.Guests were welcomed by Chairman of Barons Court, Alaa El-Din Salem, CEO, Hisham Akram and representatives of Alex West partners; Dalia Amer, General Manager of Radisson Blu Hotel in Alexandria, Ibrahim Hamami, Chairman of Hamami for Educational Services and Wellington School, and Sobhi Batterjee, Chairman of the Saudi German Hospitals Group.

Introducing City Edge Developments During a gala dinner held at the Nile Ritz-Carlton, H.E. Dr. Moustafa Madbouly, Minister of Housing, Utilities, and Urban Development, attended the launch of the newly established City Edge Developments that revealed the company’s unique and distinctive vision in penetrating the real estate market. City Edge Developments, a partnership between the New Urban Communities Authority (NUCA) with 60%, the Housing and Development Bank with 38%, and the Holding Company for Investment & Development with 2%, is investing a total of 1.3 billion EGP in the development of premium housing and mixed used projects. Through providing the best in class standards, the company’s vision is to ultimately be the national brand for premium real estate developments in Egypt.


Taste of India at Conrad’s Solana In collaboration with Conrad Makkah’s Indian Executive Chef Shadab Labroo and in partnership with the Indian Embassy, Conrad Cairo prepared a splendid Friday brunch with an Indian taste featuring a selection of Indian flavours at Conrad Cairo’s Solana Restaurant. Guests had the opportunity to taste typical Indian favourites featuring Achari Panneer Salad, Mulligatawny soup, Tandoori Chicken, Amritsari fish battered in Indian flavours.These were only some of the delicious brunch buffet items, which will also feature a selection of four international cuisines from Conrad Cairo’s four signature restaurants, all in one buffet: Oriental from Jayda Nile Ter-race, Modern Lebanese cuisine from Oak Grill, a flavorful Asian experience from Kamala, and Mediterranean fare from Solana.

Hilton Recognizes General Manager Soha El Torgoman Hilton, a leading global hospitality company, recently awarded Soha El Torgoman, Cluster General Manager for Ramses Hilton and Hilton Cairo World Trade Center Residences, with the MEA President’s Award at the 2017 Annual EMEA GM Awards. Hilton’s annual internal awards ceremony celebrates the achievements of dedicated team members in Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA). El Torgoman received the award for her notable leadership, commitment to Hilton’s culture of superior customer service, and her efforts to continue driving a positive trend in Egypt.

Majid Al Futtaim’s Shopping Malls in Egypt Celebrate a Successful Year Majid Al Futtaim, the leading shopping mall, communities, retail and leisure pioneer across the Middle East, Africa and Asia, recently hosted its Retailers’ Award Ceremony event for tenants and partners in Egypt in an early end of year celebration. The event was attended by Majid Al Futtaim management in Egypt. During the celebration, Majid Al Futtaim management announced the achievements of a fruitful 2017, with the opening of its flagship; Mall of Egypt, being the highlight of the year. In 2018, the company is targeting more key retailers to join the impressive list of tenants across fashion, entertainment and dinning sections.

Mo Salah Named Brand Ambassador for Vodafone Egypt Vodafone Egypt took its customers by surprise and announced through its Facebook page its partnership with the number 1 Egyptian player and BBC African Footballer of the Year for 2017, Mohamed Salah, to become the star of Vodafone’s Ad campaigns and its brand ambassador in 2018; which comes in line with Vodafone’s new brand strategy that encourages optimism, trust and hope. Nihal Zaki, Consumer Business Unit Director at Vodafone Egypt, commenting on the announcement “Vodafone partnered with Mohamed Salah, because of his optimistic vision towards the future” reflecting the company’s new brand strategy “The Future Is Exciting, Ready?” which focuses on steering the future towards a new phase that aims to empower Egyptian youth and customers, through services and products; making them partners throughout the journey towards a better future.

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OPPO releases F5 Red Edition and F5 Youth OPPO the selfie expert and leader launched the F5 series late 2017 – a phone that features A.I. Beauty recognition Technology for natural selfies with 6” Fullscreen display for an immersive visual experience. Since its release, the F5 managed to be the talk of the town, due to its A.I. technology, performance, and more importantly, its price and sleek design. With OPPO’s constant efforts to over exceed their customer’s expectations, they released the limited edition F5 6GB Red Edition and the F5 Youth; granting their young customers who loves fashion a wide range of new attractive colors which are Red, Black and Gold. The limited edition F5 6GB introduced the new “Red” color to the F5 series, while the F5 Youth will be released in the colors Black and Gold. To celebrate the launch of the F5 Red Edition, OPPO hosted a launch event at SASS restaurant on Monday, 22nd of January.

Yassin Harraz Verissage at Semiramis InterContinental As part of the Semiramis InterContinental Cairo hotel’s commitment to promoting the arts as well as Egyptian culture and heritage, the Semiramis InterContinental Cairo in collaboration with Picasso East art gallery, hosted a vernissage displaying the artworks of renowned Egyptian artist, Yassin Harraz. The exhibition featured paintings depicting serene depictions of the Egyptian countryside and was inaugurated by Massimo Bernardi, Executive Assistant Manager in Charge of Food & Beverage, Mohamed Amin, Director of Sales & Marketing, Semiramis InterContinental Cairo, Reda Ibrahim, owner of Picasso East gallery as well as the artist himself.

New General Manager at Sonesta HotelCairo Sonesta Middle East Hotels and Resorts Management, LLC has announced the appointment of Erik Huyer as General Manager of Sonesta Hotel, Towers & Casino Cairo. An Australian national of Dutch heritage, Erik began his career in hospitality with Hilton in Australia as the chain’s first management trainee and later spent 10 years working at hotels in Sydney and Melbourne before moving to Auckland, New Zealand. After several years in Asia and Australia working for both global hotel chains and independent properties, Erik moved to the Middle East in hotel leadership roles in Bahrain, Egypt, and Saudi Arabia. Erik brings to Sonesta a wealth of diverse international experience, specifically throughout Asia/Pacific and the Middle East and with many outstanding hotel management companies, including: Hilton, Regent, Intercontinental, and Rosewood.

Steigenbereger El Tahrir’s Talented Chefs The WorldChefs National Association in cooperation with the Egyptian Chefs Association, had announced the winners of the prestigious “Global Chef Hans Bueschkens Young Chef Challenge – Africa & Middle East” , three of which are Steigenberger El Tahrir Chefs. Chef “Mahmoud Korany” who won the WorldChefs-young chef-Challenge for Africa and Middle East , Chef “Mohamed Hosny” who scored a bronze medal and 3rd place in the Senior Chef of the Year 2017, and lastly Chef “Nora El Sayed” who also scored a bronze medal and 3rd place in the Female Chef of the Year 2017. All chefs trained under the expertise guidance of Chef Hossam Soliman and Chef Mohamed El Saadawy and scored amazing results. The cooking competition was part of an extensive competition program took place at the annual HACE hotel trade fair in Cairo, hosted at CICC “Cairo International Convention Center”, and concluded with a glamorous Gala Dinner to celebrate the 20th Anniversary of the Egyptian Chefs Association.


Wadi Food Hosts Egypt’s Annual Olive Harvest Festival Wadi Food, the leading Egyptian agribusiness company, celebrated Egypt’s annual Olive Harvest Festival under the slogan “From our Trees to your Table”, which refers to Wadi Food’s ownership of the entire process from cultivating the best olive trees all the way to the production and distribution of the finest Egyptian olive oils. The festive celebration was held at Wadi Food’s Farms located at km 54 on the Cairo-Alex Desert Road and attended by senior and executive management of Wadi Group, Wadi Food’s Mother Company, in addition to a number of top figures, media, foodies, clients and other invitees. During the festival, guests participated in a fun competition to handpick olives, followed by a tour at Wadi Food olive oil facility, to experience firsthand the modern way of olive cold press from the earliest harvest.

Xiaomi Hosts Mi Community Football Tournament in Egypt Global technology leader Xiaomi announced that the final of the Mi Community Football Tournament, an event organized by Mi Community Egypt for Egyptian Mi Fans, has come to an end successfully recently in Cairo. The Mi Community is a live forum created by Xiaomi who truly believes that innovation should be made available for everyone and values fans’ feedback very seriously. The Mi Community Egypt was officially established last August. Since then, an average of three online activities and one offline event are organized monthly for Mi Fans, including the first Mi Fan Meetup in Cairo when Xiaomi officially entered the Egyptian market earlier last year.

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles’ Annual Conference On the occasion of its Annual Press Conference, FCA Egypt shed light on its most significant achievements and results during 2017, as well as its ambitious plans for 2018. This year’s conference is of special importance as it comes after encountering the most difficult/challenging year throughout the automotive history in the Egyptian market. After welcoming the guests, Mr. Francesco Monaco, Chief Executive Officer of FCA Egypt, expressed his satisfaction of the company’s results in 2017, in general. Despite the challenges faced by the Egyptian automotive market which led to a decline in the demand on cars by 30%, according to AMIC’s annual report, the company succeeded to achieve its targeted profits for the year through a set of strategies that contributed in achieving those goals. In less than one year after its launch, Tipo was ranked among the top ten best-selling vehicles in its segment, according to AMIC’s annual report.

Tatweer Misr Hosts Gala Dinner to Celebrate Partnership with Liverpool FC In a night to remember where guests indulged in an exquisite festive atmosphere, Tatweer Misr, the Egyptian real estate developer, celebrated celebrate its 3-year partnership with the Premier League’s Liverpool FC at a lavish Gala Dinner at Semiramis Intercontinental Hotel. The spectacular night hosted a line-up of the society’s elite, public figures, and celebrities, including Mostafa Fahmy, Egyptian football legends Hazem Imam and Khalid Bibo and the prominent businessman, Naguib Sawiris. Liverpool legend and Ambassador, Robbie Fowler, attended the event alongside Olly Dale, the club’s Commercial Director. The celebration commenced with a welcome note from Dr. Ahmed Shalaby, the Managing Director of Tatweer Misr. Shalaby emphasized the importance of this unique partnership, aiming to support Tatweer Misr’s international sales campaigns in Europe, kicking off in the United Kingdom this spring. Man of the hour, Abu delighted the crowd with a performance of his most recent hits, followed by the one and only Amr Diab who treated everyone to an array of his gems. The event was concluded by a draw where winners received original Liverpool first team jerseys.

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FLAIR #LOVES By Daniela Bonetto

A GOOD KNOT Who doesn’t love a good weave? Continuing the exploration into the construction of cloth, Super Texture dives deep into the weave, the knits and the knots, adding colour and extra texture to the Soft and Boucle ranges. Burgeoning adventures begin in print, in embroidery and in the hand tufting and looping of wool with young emerging talent to produce new families: ABSTRACT, PAINT & GEO. (Abstract cushion, £100, tomdixon.net)

JANUARY BLUES It’s cold, damp and grey and after the excitement of the month gone past it’s hard to focus on the task at hand. A holiday beckons. But before those tootsies can hit the sand it’s time to pack. Don’t dread the cramming the “oh you never know if I’ll need this 10th pair of jeans” into the suitcase because Briggs & Riley’s stylish Sympatico collection benefits from their Expansion-Compression Technology, allowing users up to 25% more packing space for their winter sun trips away. Problem resolved, now where to? [From £139 from johnlewis.com]

BLOOMING GOOD IDEA Bloomboom lamp by François-Marie Gérard & Irma Birka: born in the creative laboratories of a stylist and a designer, in the mood for a playful fusion of fashion and design.... by wishing to create an imaginary garden for the home. The lamps are manufactured and assembled by hand by the designers themselves - the flower leaves are hand-carved so that each lamp is unique. [from 440 Euros, bloomboom.fr)


{ DELAKTIG } Tom Dixon gets into bed with the biggest furniture company in the world to create a durable, transformable platform for living - DELAKTIG. Without a shadow of a doubt the bed is the most important item in any home, hospital, prison. So what if a bed could work harder - become other things? Change function when you move home or grow up? Together with IKEA, Tom decided to create a super - durable aluminium frame that could be constantly updated or upgraded as your life and needs evolve. At its most basic, DELAKTIG is a single bed - rapidly transformable into a chaise lounge or a three-seat sofa by adding additional components. {HACK Furry Cover, from £10,000, HACK BOOM Light, £285. The frame is sold separately tomdixon.net}

[SIMPLY A BIJOUX] Some people wear them on their fingers, some around their necks but the bijoux that is hot right now is that taking centre stage in one’s bathroom. Enter apaiser & Kelly Hoppen with the fabulous Bijoux Collection. [Bijoux Bath, £3,482, apaiser. com/BijouxCollection]

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Fashion

P. 32 Hitchcock Heroine/ Not So “BAZIC” / Luxe Legacy 19


FASHION CLIPPINGS By Nour Ibrahim

Scrunchie Come Back The 80s renaissance is already booming in 2018, and that brings us scrunchy fever. Brands such as Maison Cleo, Urban Outfitters and Balenciaga are all participating in the sale of the large hair tie. Going beautifully with the healthy hair movement of the new year, this protective, soft and colorful item is set to be a fan favorite this year.

Bershka Rocks On With the nostalgia trend on the rise, Bershka is entering the world of vintage band tees with its capsule collection. Celebrating the iconic artists of the 70s, 80s and 90s, the t-shirts make sure to include all variation of music and artists- all with a beloved rugged design. Featuring bands such as ACDC, The Rolling Stones and The Backstreet Boys as well as solo artist David Bowie, the brand is not lacking in their taste of musical icons. Any fan of oldies music is sure to go crazy over this line, and probably re-rock out to these idols albums that will forever be timeless.

Anna’s Wardrobe Ever wonder what celebrities do with their endless amount of designer clothing? Well auction it off of course! At least that’s what Italian fashionista and fashion editor Anna Dello Russo is doing. Kicking off the beginning of Milan fashion week this February, Russo is auctioning off many of her designer accessories and clothes. All proceeds from this auction are going to the Swarovski Foundation which supports students at the prestigious Central Saint Martins fashion school. This charitable act will allow many to access her countless items collected from major designers such as Giorgio Armani, Dolce and Gabbana, Versace and others. An act to benefit both fashion lovers and students in need.


Stella McCartney Splash into Men’s Swimwear Always an advocate on eco-friendly wear, Stella McCartney is now launching a summer collection for men. The collection includes bathing trunks and shirts as well as towels and even a poncho. Not only are all these items made with a blend of organic cotton and recycled nylon, but also include a variety of colors and patterns that show that the brand- though new to menswear, knows what it’s doing. Colors such as green, blue and lavender are included in the collection as well as a series of Hawaiian style prints. Fashionable and refreshing, this line is taking a dive in the right direction.

Louis Vuitton Cruises Japan French house Louis Vuitton has released their latest cruise collection inspired by ancient Japanese culture. Combining eccentric style with futuristic undertones allowed for the release of a collection that beautifully played on the ideas of power and dominance. The creator of the collection Nicolas Ghesquière combined the signature ancient elements of the angular shoulder pads and linings with a modern twist, creating a series of sharp looking tuxes and gowns. Clean cut and empowering, the collection pays homage to ancient Japanese culture.

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BEAUTY CLIPPINGS By Nour Ibrahim

Jelly Masks Facial masks were the most satisfying trend of 2017. Whether that came in the form of clay, bubble, charcoal or even glitter masks, they were trending, and they were keeping our skin refreshed and clear. This year, however, a whole new world of masks is trending the shelves: The Jelly Mask. Smooth, refreshing and ultra hydrating, these masks are set to be the ultimate facial solution in 2018.

Sia x MAC Sia is known for two things: her beautiful music and her mysterious and unique style. Now you can wear the Sia lip, and she has teamed up with Mac to create her signature red lipstick at 17$ a pop. All proceeds will go to those affected by HIV/AIDs. A lovely lipstick for a charitable cause, who wouldn’t want to participate?

#Basketcase Eyeliner Any Green Day fan knows two things, ‘Basket Case’ is the most angsty song in the world, and lead singer Billy Joe Armstrong is obsessed with liner. That’s why him and tattoo artist and makeup brand owner Kat Von D have teamed up to make the most grunge worthy eyeliner yet, rightfully named after the iconic song. #Basketcase Eyeliner is not only cruelty free, but it happens to be vegan as well. If you are going to buy eyeliner from anyone, let it be from those who have ample experience with the product; rock stars know what they’re doing!


Too Faced’s Life’s a Festival While the unicorn train is slowly riding away, make up brand Too Faced is looking to make the most out of the fading trend. For all the unicorn rainbow lovers out there, this line is for you. Too Faced’s ‘Life’s A Festive’ line looks exactly how it sounds like. Teaming up with Rae Lynn, fellow unicorn lover, the brand celebrates the brightly colored trend with a series of pastel unicorn highlights, a beautiful eyeshadow pallet and brightly colored lip gloss. Whimsical and colorful, this line is the perfect combination of all things unicorn.

Black Magic Makeup Goth and grunge lovers are going to obsess over this new trend of makeup. Contrasting the bright and colorful unicorn trend of 2017, you have the release of the totally gothic, and practical, black makeup trend. Practical black makeup? Hear me out. These make ups may seem gloomy on the outside, but on the inside, they provide you with your most natural tone you will ever find. These color-changing makeups change their color based on the temperature of your skin, allowing you to access your most natural makeup look yet. This Black Magic trend is being celebrated by major makeup brands such as Ulta Beauty, Estee Lauder and Sephora, and goes perfectly with the “going natural” trend of 2018.

L’Oréal Natural Hair Dye Back again with the all-natural trend, L’Oréal has created a new line of all-natural plant based hair dye, completely environmentally friendly and vegan titled Botanea. Having such a large market, this is truly a step in the right direction for the world of beauty. Chemicals can be damaging to the hair when dying it, which is why this natural approach is truly a big move on L’Oréal’s part. A beautiful addition the world’s ever growing desire for the natural and healthy over the artificial.

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INTERVIEW

Luxe Legacy CINDY CHAO The Art Jewel Wearing and collecting fine jewellery is one of the most timeless ways to mark life’s milestones in one’s wardrobe. Cindy Chao, the mastermind of her eponymous fine jewellery brand, understands the special role that jewellery plays in a fashionista’s life, creating stunningly unique pieces full of that special timeless sparkle that we all need in our collections. We sat down with the designer to learn more about the story behind her work. By Kate Dannies


Rose Ring

Red Diamond Ribbon Ring

Rose Earrings

How has the field of jewellery design changed since you started your brand?

The landscape of jewellery design and demographic of collectors have both changed in the last 15 years. When I first started, there was not a lot of people who understood my definition of “art jewels”, especially in Asia. In the past 15 years, the world has changed so quickly and people are getting new information at their fingertips by the second. With everything else being fast and automated, collectors nowadays treasure craftsmanship that takes time to refine and memorable experiences that could be savoured. In addition to big jewellery houses with century-old history, globally there are more and more independent creators challenging the limit of jewellery design. Among these individual creators we see a large number of them emerging with an Asian heritage. By bringing their unique insights and tastes to their works, they enrich the landscape of the industry which is traditionally dominated by European brands. My style, for example, integrates the eastern architectural and sculptural training I have inherited from my family in combination with the western jewellery craftsmanship dating back to 300 years ago. It has proved to be cross-cultural and can be appreciated by a wide range of individuals. I am sure that in the decades to come, we will see even more styles in jewellery flourishing, constantly adding diversity to the field.

How has your style changed and what were your major influences over the years?

My creation style does reflect change of my personality and my life experience. When I established my brand in 2004, I was only 29 years old. Every day I was facing only the same challenge: how would my brand and my work be recognized? Eager to show my ideas and prove my potential to the world, I used to make my design as sophisticated as possible. As I gained more life experience and especially when I started to work in collaboration with European craftsmen who have very different background from mine, I gradually learnt to adjust my interpersonal communication style and to manage my emotions. Several collectors who have been collecting and supporting my works since the early days have told me that the contours of my jewellery are now much smoother and softer than they were at the beginning of my career. In recent years, my style has turned towards essentialism as inspired by Michelangelo, who described himself as freeing the soul of the marble. “I saw the angel in

the marble and carved until I set him free.” Instead of making complicated designs, I now have more conversation with myself and spend much more time contemplating on how to reduce the unnecessary when I wax-sculpt to create an Art Jewel. Interestingly, this creative mindset of preserving the true essence helps to render my creations more impactful.

Where, when, and how do you get the inspiration for your designs?

I believe that inspiration is an accumulation of one’s life experience, sensibility and passion. As an artist and a global traveller, I believe that art is something powerful that can break down the barriers of religion, race, nationality, age, culture, etc. The energies I invest in my artworks can be said to originate from my accumulation of travel and cultural experiences.So instead of finding inspiration purposely, I let inspiration come to me at however tiny moment in my life. The ocean’s mesmerising blue and green colours that greeted my eyes in a snorkeling expedition in Phuket (this experience inspired my Aquatic collection!); the splendid cliffs at sunset I witnessed in an olive yard in Majorca; the magnificently pure white snow in Gstaad… These experiences fulfill my mind, and like chemical reactions they motivate my design when the moment comes. The inspiration of my Rose Collection, for example, comes from the Giardino delle Rose ‘Garden of Roses’, which I stepped into on my way to Michelangelo Square for the Statue of David during one of my trips in Florence. Although I had been to the city a number of times to let myself marvel at the ancient sages’ statues around, it was my very first time to explore the garden. The garden, located in the middle of the hill, was planted with over 350 rose species cultivated from the 19th century, each growing in a charming posture. In the sunshine they form a floral symphony, which led to the creation of the Rose Collection that translate my impression and imagination of that enchanting garden.

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Conch Pearl Rose Earrings

How would you like those who wear your pieces to feel in them?

Jewellery is unique in that it combines the best of two worlds: gemstones, the most precious gift from the Nature that has been existed on the planet for millions of years, and craftsmanship, human genius that is the crystallisation of masters’ intelligence and skills. Both can be passed down from generation and generation, with deep emotional meanings endowed that thereby become timeless. In this regard, I need to take my design seriously as my creations will still be worn or be admired for tens and hundreds of years. All my Art Jewels encapsulate my creativity and they are the embodiments of some of the world’s most refined craftsmanship. Furthermore, they convey the mood I have gone through during the creative process. While I find it fundamental for those who wear my jewellery to realise that every piece of is unique and is produced with the highest standard, I also hope they can further feel my emotions in the works and make the jewellery piece part of their legacies as well. As an artist, this is the way I connect and resonate with my collectors. I am a firm believer that when you find a piece of jewellery that is “you”, you would immediately brighten up like a star. So my collectors feel at ease and confident when they wear my jewels as if my creations constituted an extension of themselves, and even a complement to their personality to reflect who they are and how they are.

Four Seasons Maple Earrings Winter Leaves Brooches

What is your personal jewellery style and some of your favourite classic pieces?

Dragonfly Brooch Conch Pearl Ruby

It may be surprising to most but in fact I don’t wear jewellery in my daily life. Creating art jewels according to my artistic fantasy is my passion, but I am highly conscious of the fact that I am creating for someone else’s enjoyment: for collectors’ wedding anniversary, for a mother’s love to her daughter, etc. These sensations and intimate experiences connect me as a creator with the collectors, and imprint indelible marks in our lives.

What are you excited about for 2018?

The year 2018 will be an intensive one for CINDY CHAO The Art Jewel as we are planning a series of events around the globe. One highlight will be the unveiling of a brand new collection at Masterpiece London in June and later in Paris during the Haute Couture Week in July. What I can reveal for the moment is that the new pieces are inspired by one of my trips last summer. It’s a glimpse of the world through my eyes. I cannot wait to hear what people think of these new works! Stay tuned!


YOU BR I NG THE LOV E ... W E H AV E THE “ VALEN - DI NE”

16 SARAY EL GEZIRA ST., PO BOX 33 ZAMALEK, CAIRO 11211, EGYPT. T: 00. 202.27.28.3000 CAIROMARRIOTTHOTEL.COM ARABIC.MARRIOTT.COM

Delicious temptation will lure lovers this Valentine’s with the promise of a night of starry-eyed affection. If the exotic appeals, Torii teases with a Japanese twist to a dream evening with lobster and tenderloin. In the beguiling Saraya Gallery and captivating Ristorante Tuscany, candlelit tables and roses set the scene for romance and exquisite cuisine ... the perfect match. Delight in the amuse-bouche, seafood platter with caviar dressing, consommé, fish or steak. But save room for our signature pistachio chocolate dacquoise ... because on Valentine’s night everyone should share love, devotion and wonderful food.


INTERVIEW

Signature Dima Falahy Earrings in Blue Topaz and 18kt gold.

Ruby Tassel Earrings in diamonds all-around and 18kt gold.

Dima’s

Dreams of Gold 18kt gold Ball Earrings

Dima Kirdan Necklace inspired by Egyptian iconic jewellery, in 18kt gold.

Limited Edition Blue Topaz Ring in diamonds and 18kt gold

Dima Signature Coin Choker in 18kt hammered gold.

Dima Cocktail Earrings in Ruby, Chrysophrase and Lapis, in diamonds and 18kt gold.


When Dima Rashid founded her own label in 2002, her fun and flirtatious designs crafted from 18kt gold fused with precious and semi-precious were an instant hit. Her colorful and mesmerizing jewels not only became coveted by Egypt’s fashionistas, but they also graced the bodies of international celebrities and world leaders. She was one of the first to embrace designs with the now trendy and ubiquitous layered jewels look. Over the years many have tried to imitate her designs. Yet, her unique and signature look remains unmistakably her own. As she releases her latest alluring collection Dreams of Gold, we speak to the one and only Dima Rashid… Where do you draw your inspiration?

My inspiration always starts off with my stones which I collect annually through my travels. My love for stones is a passion that I inherited from my father at a very young age who used to collect rare stones and antiques. Naturally, each design is created around the individuality and the asymmetry of my stones. That’s why each piece is one-of-a-kind and it would be very rare to find two of the same design.

Take us through your design process…

Before starting a new collection, together with my team, we research global design trends and forecasted pantones of the season. Then we start looking into how we can creatively combine these trends with our design philosophy which revolves around asymmetry, unique combinations of timeless precious and semi-precious stones, and our signature 18kt gold. 


Throughout your career, what achievement are you most proud of?


I always say it; seeing others wearing my designs and appreciate my work.

Local and international celebrities alike love your pieces. What do you think draws them to your jewelry?


I would say how fun and individual the pieces are. It’s a great thing to enjoy your jewelry and use it to express who you are.

What is the most challenging aspect in being a jewelry designer?

Every phase has its challenges but it’s important to look at challenges as opportunities in disguise to push your envelope further. This year we’re placing a lot of focus on our research and design development. Staying ahead in terms of design trends while also maintaining our identity is something we always consider with each creation. Finding the right stones that suit our said design philosophy is also as equally challenging. We’re very selective with our stones which we collect on an annual basis. Limited Edition Cocktail Rings featuring diamonds, Ruby, Blue and Green Topaz , in 18kt gold.

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How do you manage to keep your success and stay competitive?


Constant research, keeping an open eye to what’s new in the market whether in design or branding trends and staying in the loop when it comes to the design industry in general. Traveling frequently helps me and my teams stay exposed and up to date.

What is your favorite pieces from “Dreams of Gold”?


The Mix & Match Earrings in diamonds, Lapis, and Chrysophrase. It’s very expressive of our design identity which revolves around unique and raw stone combinations, asymmetry, and always fun to wear.


What is your take on the boom of emerging jewelry brands in the Egyptian fashion scene?

The industry has been growing very fast in the past couple of years where there has been a boom in up and coming jewelry designers. I think a combination of a rise in entrepreneurship and increased globalization caused by the recent surge in social media have both helped provide a platform for designers and made it so much easier for them to gain reach exposure whether in their home country or internationally. However, it’s important for upcoming designers to note that what will really differentiate them and make their brand sustainable takes far more than what just social media can offer. It’s important throughout the way to develop your unique identity and stay true to it, constantly research your target markets and personally connect with your clients. 


Limited Edition Dima Cocktail Earrings in Ruby, diamonds, Lapis and Chrysophrase.


FEATURE

Fashion Jewellery Trends Beyond the Classics By Kate Dannies

Classic jewellery holds a special place in our heart and all of us have those timeless pieces that we return to again and again and will treasure forever. However, it is always a good idea to step out of our comfort zone and jazz up our wardrobe with new trends and ideas, including with our jewellery. From barefoot sandals to broaches and harness jewellery, we bring you our best ideas for how to think outside the box with your jewellery collections and add some pizzazz to your look in 2018.

Ear Jacket We love ear jackets because they give us the ability to experiment with earrings without the pain and hassle of getting extra piercings. This trends offers a fun way to add a little extra bling in the earring department subtly or less subtly, as you please.

Nose Chain This is a very daring look inspired by South Asian jewellery traditions. Done right, we think it can be pulled off successfully and add a great deal of personal style to a simple outfit or evening gown. The key is simplicity and choosing colors that suit your complexion.

Barefoot Sandals A gorgeous look that adds so much style on beach days. We are also fans of belly-neck chains, but these barefoot sandals are a fashion forward alternative for the new season. Just don’t lose them in the sea!


Armlet Broach This classic is coming back with a vengeance and we love the update on the ubiquitous cuff featuring more delicate layered chains and simple lines. Perfect for the beach or to add some style to the usual formal wear look.

Not your grandmother’s broach; or maybe it is? We love the new update on this classic granny look with bold colors and patterns that make a simple outfit pop. This is especially fun on items like jackets and dresses to add personality to more basic items.

Hand Harness A more wearable take on the genre of “harness jewellery” which we are loving this season. The hand harness is perfect for the beach, or really any occasion depending on the boldness of the option you choose.

Multi-Finger Ring

Leg Chain

This is a subtle but very chic trend that we really love for any occasion, especially since rings are a place that we tend to stick to traditional styles much of the time. We love this look for daytime or evening.

Another new look we adore that is perfect for the beach to add some bling to your bikini and sandals routine. The simpler the better with this look; opt for delicate options as opposed to heavy chains to keep the effect subtle.

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PHOTO SHOOT

Model: Anastasiya Mikhaylyuta Photography: Alina GolubStyle & Nadina Smirnova MUA: Lyubov Rassolova Set Design: U.P.P., Marina Alymova Producer: Olga Ivanova Coat - MARIE DE MARIE Dress - DIOR Jewelry - MAGIA DI GAMMA


HITCHCOCK

HEROINE

Suit - ESTER ABNER Jewelry - DIOR

Arguably one of the renowned directors, British filmmaker Alfred Hitchcock often dressed his film heroines who were typically blonde in very specific attire. The Hitchcock heroine always exuded elegance (no matter how dire her situation was) by donning classic pieces in solid colors as she appeared in the director’s iconic horror and thrillers. Years later, his film muses continue to inspire us in fashion and beyond.

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Fur Coat - ALICE STREE Dress - CHAPURIN Scarf - DMITRY DEMIN


Fur Coat - ALICE STREE Dress - CHAPURIN Scarf - DMITRY DEMIN

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Blouse - CHAPURIN Skirt - SAINT LAURENT Jewelry - H&M


Suit - MONO STUDIO

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FEATURE

N By Natalie Effortless Elegance N by Natalie is one of Egypt’s newest fashion brands. However, Natalie (the designer behind her namesake label), is not a newcomer to the business. The Italian who took residence in Egypt decades ago has a background in fashion and also works as a stylist. With her latest brand, Natalie is producing effortlessly elegant shirts, blouses, and tops while overseeing her designs every step of the way.

How does your Italian roots influence your design?

Being Italian and being able to learn from the best is a great advantage and the lesson I learned is that simplicity is a key to elegance and style.

What inspired you to start your own brand?

For me it was almost a necessity- to go back to something I love. There is nothing more rewarding than creating something and finding out that people actually like it. Plus, despite the multitude of brands available today in Egypt, local and international, sometimes its really difficult to find the right top for an outing or the perfect white shirt that stands out. My aspiration is to fill that gap.

How would you describe the design aesthetic of N by Natalie?

Simple with a twist, elegant, reflecting the current trends and suitable for all ages.

How do you monitor the quality of your pieces?

Personally! I am involved in every stage of my production- creating the model, choosing the right material, supervising the production process according to very strict criteria for the finishing and the general outlook of the product. My models are very limited in quantity so the quality is my most important concern.

What do you consider the most while creating a new piece?

Being different from the main stream, being simple and elegant ,choosing the right material and, last but not least, creating models that are wearable by everybody- young and not so young.


How would you describe your latest collection? What are your favorite pieces from it?

I would say effortlessly elegant. Each model is simple yet with a special detail that makes it unique and gives you an elegant touch without too much effort. My two favorite pieces are the lace backless top and the taffeta blouse with organza sleeves. I also like the leather top with side tulle ruffles – its fun.

What has been the most challenging aspect of running your brand so far? Finding the material I need. In the 80s when I started all kind of materials were available in Egypt. Nowadays this is not the case. Sometimes you have to work with what’s available, even if it is not what you are looking for, to keep the costs down without compromising the quality. It is quite challenging but I always try to find the best available substitute taking in consideration the quality of the fabric and the amount of natural fibers in it.

What are your future plans and ambitions for the brand? Photography: Karim Medhat Styling: Farrah’s Studio MUA: Yomon Mallah

N by Natalie is a young brand. My first priority is to get it established firmly on the Egyptian market. In the mean time, through the Internet, maybe we can find a place on the global fashion scene.

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FEATURE

Not So “BAZIC” Effortless Fashion By Sarah Guirguis

Project + Production | @maisonpyramide Art Direction | @styledbyfarahelsayed Styling | @aliadessouki @farahseif_ Fashion Coordinator | @hannashannon_ Photography | @bysarahlasheen MUA | @bydanakhedr Models | @lailaaezzat


They may be called BAZIC, but the story behind the brand is anything but. Never fully satisfied with her options when she went shopping in Egypt, Nada Mansour, 23, found the inspiration to fill that gap by embarking on her own fashion journey. Even with hardly any fashion experience except with the sportswear brand, Bel Balady, that same year, she launched her clothing brand, BAZIC, in December 2016. For anyone who is into new trends minus the extra factor or the frills, BAZIC is the perfect brand for you. Mansour is one of those designers who believe simple is elegant, and unfailingly, lives up to that concept with her effortless designs. She sees her brand as more than just product but rather a lifestyle for her customers to embrace and adopt. The BAZIC pieces mainly come in a palette of solid and neutral colors, which further torques up their practicality and relevance to everyday style. To get an even closer look at her vision for simplicity, when we asked her about her design process, Mansour said, “I start with researching all the high end brands, like Balenciaga and Dior, to check the upcoming trends and I use the concept on different items. For example, if they use oversized outfits, I can have an oversized dress and so on.” Her aspiration for the brand is to reach the caliber of “the Egyptian version of Zara”. As for celebrities she would love to collaborate with in the future, she mentioned Amina Khalil, Jamila Awad and Shereen Reda.

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Lifestyle

P. 54

Shiva Safai/ Asser’s Many Roles/ Haven in the Alps / Aï Restaurant 45


FEATURE

Making Tracks Epic Train Journeys It is hard to imagine an experience that evokes more old world luxury than high class, long distance train travel. We are happy to report that this tradition is alive and well across the world, with plush trains offering jetsetters the enviable chance to see the world--from Australia to Peru and everything in between--from a fully appointed sleeper car. We rounded up some of the most epic train journeys across the world pairing spectacular scenery with luxury service in the journey of a lifetime on the rails. By Kate Dannies

Indian Pacific Luxury Sleeper The Indian Pacific is an elegantly luxurious train with comfortable interiors. The modern suites with their wooden surroundings contrast to the fantastic retro-Edwardian dÊcor of the dining car, all complete with panoramic windows for perfect observation. Whether the final destination is west to Perth or east to Sydney, there are many opportunities to leave the train and experience some of the region’s highlights, creating memories on one of the longest train journeys in the world. What a wonderful way to cross a vast continent in such luxury, enjoying meals whilst viewing the incredible landscapes. Train travel seems a particularly suited choice for Australia, with its breathtaking scenery and wide-open spaces.


Belmond Hiram Bingham In less than four hours, this elegant train completes the spectacular journey between the city of Cuzco and Machu Picchu, the sacred Inca city in the Andes mountains. The train is managed by Belmond, one of the world’s most luxurious hotel brands, and is named after the US explorer who claimed to have discovered Machu Picchu in 1911. Hosting up to 84 guests, the train’s carriages include two dining wagon, a bar wagon, and an open view scenery wagon to soak in the views. Decorated in the style of 1920s Pullman carriages, each train car has been furnished in polished wood and brass with large comfortable armchairs. A perfect way to transition slowly up to altitude and bond with your fellow travelers over the sites along the way, this train is our preferred way to see the unforgettable heritage sites of Peru.

The Blue Train Orient Express aside, The Blue Train is the world’s best known luxury service, gliding opulently since 1923 between Pretoria and Cape Town on its 994-mile, 27-hour journey showing off South Africa’s stunning scenery. Wood-panelled berths, cigars and champagne set the scene on this legendary sleeper, giving one the chance to see the breadth of South Africa from a picture window. Highly recommended.

Palace on Wheels It is not the only luxury train in the Indian subcontinent, but perhaps the most famous. The Palace on Wheels is the most relaxing way to see the sights or Rajasthan while avoiding the heat and crowds of tourist India. Though advertised as “in the style of the Maharajahs”, the 14 carriages are, fortunately, modern with private showers. There is a nod to the past is that each has its own “khidmatagar” – or personal steward. The seven-night journey out of Delhi is possibly the nicest way of lapping up India’s top heritage sites, including the Taj Mahal, without getting too down and dirty. We love the opulence of the interiors, the elegant service, and the chance to see India from the best possible vantage point.

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Eastern & Oriental Express There’s always a thrill of expectation in the air at Bangkok’s Hua Lamphong station as this grand 19-coach sleeping car express – with its polished brass and green and cream paintwork – prepares to depart south through Malaysia to Singapore as it has done for the past two decades. Reminiscent of colonial days gone by, guests enjoy spacious and modern coaches, with full en suite facilities. Ultimate delight is the veranda of the carriage at the rear; nothing beats the view at sunset.

The Rocky Mountaineer A thrilling two-day journey by private train over four different routes through the Rockies, over the old Canadian Pacific line to Vancouver, which created the modern nation of Canada in 1885. Here are glacier-fed lakes, carpets of green forest, rushing rivers and an abundance of wildlife. Fans of old North American trains can book a “Gold Leaf” ticket to ride and dine in traditional-style Dome Cars. Wildlife sightings and cosy evenings are part and parcel of this memorable journey into the American wilderness.

Venice-Simplon Orient Express Grande dame of luxury trains, simply the most glamorous, luxurious and thrilling service on the planet. Here in magnificent Twenties art-deco carriages is world-class service, the finest haute cuisine freshly cooked on board, gorgeous alpine scenery, and, for the romantically-inclined, a piano bar for the evenings. You will find no Wi-Fi, showers or private bathrooms on board. But who cares when you are travelling on the original – and the best.


PERSON OF FLAIR

Second Wives Club’s

Shiva Safai

You might be familiar with the beautiful Shiva Safai as the fiancé of real estate mogul Mohamed Hadid and as a star on E!’s hit series Second Wives Club. Apart from being one of the members of the infamous Hadid clan, Safai is so much more. Born in Iran and raised in Norway, Shiva moved to Los Angeles at the age of 19 and for a decade she ran her own successful business checking criminal backgrounds. As a self-made businesswoman, Shiva travelled the world cultivating her passion for exquisite fashion and décor in places like Paris, Greece, and Egypt. Her passion grew into a burgeoning lifestyle brand and amassing nearly 600K followers on Instagram on the way. We get up close and personal with Shiva and chat with her about her lifestyle, beauty, and charitable causes.

Photographer: Ben Miller MUA: Lyndsay Zavitz Hair Stylist: Eduardo


How would you describe your style? How does your international background influence it?

I am very much into the timeless elegant look. I like clean lines and invest in classic pieces that I can keep in my closet for years to come and it would never go out of style. I am definitely connected and influenced by all three (Iran, Norway, US). My parents were very good at making sure I knew where I came, from my roots and my culture. Growing up in Norway has definitely also shaped who I am today. And my new home USA is where I feel at peace.

What are the biggest challenges that you have faced in your career so far?

It’s very important to cancel all the negative outside noise and focus on what’s real and what your goal and passion in life is. Because haters will always hate and they want to criticize and want to see you fail.

Reality TV can be exhausting. How do you stay sane amidst the drama?

It’s really important to keep a balance and make sure you don’t bring back the drama into your home when the cameras are off. You want to be able to disconnect and keep the drama out of your private life.

You are heavily involved in the Iranian charity, Mahak, why is it important to you to be involved in charitable endeavors in Iran?

I love being involved or to help in any way that I can when it comes to charities involving children. And the fact that Mahak charity is in Iran was very dear and close to my heart as it’s where I am from. But it doesn’t matter where in the world it is children everywhere need help and deserve safety and being healthy so I will always be involved in various charities and organizations.

What do you wish to accomplish in the future?

I definitely want to leave behind a name, a mark on this world where I can look back and be proud of my accomplishments in life. I want my family and friends to be proud as well. I want to build a brand where it represents me in the most organic way possible.

Top 5 beauty products you can’t live without?

Tell us something most people don’t know about Mohamed Hadid…

Favorite cities?

SPF sunblock every day, Nuxe lip balm, Anastasia eyebrow pencil, Shani Darden retinol cream, and Hydrocortisone cream if I get any blemishes.

He was in the 1992 winter Olympic for speed skiing.

Paris and Los Angeles.

You are part of a famous family. How would you describe your relationship with Hadid’s extended family?

I learned to thread my own eyebrows.

Just like any other modern/blended family. I am very blessed and grateful that we have a wonderful relationship built on respect and love.

Hidden talent?

Fashion or beauty idols?

I have always loved Jackie O and Grace Kelly they are to me the epitome of timeless class, beauty and fashion icon.

Favorite inspirational quote?

“Don’t call it a dream, call it a plan”.

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INTERVIEW

Asser’s Many Roles The name Asser Yassin needs little introduction. After all, the actor has cemented his position as one of Egypt’s leading heartthrobs. With his popularity steadily rising over the years, Asser’s acting roles kept evolving-and so did his views on the business. A trained engineer who became an actor, Asser’s latest role sees him behind the camera directing one of Egypt’s most successful bands, Wust El-Balad. We spoke to him about his career shift, his toughest roles and living in the “now”… By Sarah Guirguis

How did the collaboration with Wust El-Balad come about?

They have been friends of mine for a very long time. I’m a fan of Wust El-Balad in general. I love their music and I love their lyrics, and I had produced a song for Abu before in 2016, which they liked, so they told me, “Pick one from our album, and please, it would be a pleasure if you directed it.” I picked El Ekhtelaf El Mo2talef because I loved it, and I went on and I produced it, as well. I said, “I’m going to produce it, direct it and create everything in it, and actually work in it as an actor, too.” Projects like this turn into great memories for me later on. You never know where Wust El-Balad will be in ten year or where I’ll be in ten years. But projects like this provide something to look back at in the future.

What was the concept behind the clip?

El Ekhtelaf El Mo2talef is basically about how different we are and how similar we are in these differences. It’s about contradiction. For me personally, it’s about equalization between things. I believe in the balance of white and black, day and night, strong and weak, and I think humans should attain to be having the similar balance of that. You can’t just be strong without being weak. You cannot be as generous without being a bit in control. You have to have a balance of everything in life, so that you come to your own element, which is presence, and you reach that state of knowing your purpose. To me, that was the clip. That was the inspiration behind doing this. On a more basic level, the clip represents life and death. There’s revenge and empathy. We don’t know why the guy killed the whole band, but the band is avenging their death by sending a spirit that he falls for and she betrays him by poisoning him with a cup of coffee. It’s a very romantic way for the band to avenge their death!

How was your experience in directing it?

It was great. It was a long, 23-hour experience! It was also new for me to act and direct at the same time. I would fix the shot and then get in it. With a proper team, proper assistants and very good production, it was really good. It takes a good team to do that.

Photo by Remon El Markiz. Styling by Pacinthe Badran


When did you first realize you were interested in acting?

When I was in university. I went to the American University in Cairo and I studied mechanical engineering. By mere coincidence, a friend of mine who knows my love for acting and cinema, in general, so he told me, “Someone left his role in the play. Why don’t you step in?” So I tried and I loved it. I went for it, and before graduating, I decided this is what I want to become actually – an actor. I don’t want to go on with engineering. I loved it but I wanted to become an artist.

myself. I told my father, by the end of this year, if I’m not supporting myself from acting, I’m not going to pursue it anymore. So for a year, I didn’t pursue any engineering jobs and was instead on the hunt for any acting experiences, even small ones in theater, short films, or any small role that I could get. I gave it my all, to be honest, and this why I’m here today. I was very worried at the time, but today, I’m really happy where I am. You’ll never find someone who is successful at something that he didn’t give his all in.

What has been the greatest challenge How did you calculate the risk of that has faced you throughout your starting a career in something totally career so far? My biggest challenge was to love my different from your major? I always tell this to anyone who wants to shift careers or to try something new, that I was raised with an engineering approach because my father is an engineer. We have a specific way with thinking and problem solving. If we want to achieve something, we study it and then go for it. I went to a million interviews and actually getting accepted in a lot of them. Mind you, I didn’t have the cash. After I graduated, I said I wouldn’t take any money from my parents, so I started taking some small gigs on the side, like management and organizational jobs, just to sustain

work. I had reached a phase in my career, where I was just doing it because I was doing it. It’s really hard to enjoy what you’re doing sometimes, given that it becomes your career. When your hobby becomes your job, it’s really hard to maintain this love. It becomes about the money and position and so on. Thankfully, I restored my love for my work no matter what. Another goal is to maintain this passion for arts in general, as well.

Photo by Remon El Markiz. Styling by Pacinthe Badran

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How do you select your roles? Are there certain types of roles that you prefer to others? My focus is usually on the film or the project itself. If I decide that it has the potential to make a difference, or be very entertaining or comic, then I get on board. For example, 30 Days, a show I acted in last year, had an impact on me personally. It was about someone getting punished everyday without knowing why, and the punishment was really ugly and intense. He started losing a lot of things everyday for thirty days until he knew the truth, but he became psychologically ill. It made think that if I meet anyone new, I have no idea what kind of baggage they are carrying, so I shouldn’t judge anyone. I have zero expectations from anyone. So, you learn things from your projects and people learn, too. At least, smart people do! I’m a believer in the concept that whatever I aspire for, it comes to me and vice versa. Sometimes, there are projects that I really want to be a part of but when they come, I don’t want them anymore. Some projects I’m not enthusiastic about also turn into something that I grow to love, so I can’t tell you that I know exactly what I’m looking for. For example, I was supposed to do Turab El Mass two years ago and it got postponed. I had refused a role in a series with a good wage for this role in the

film and it got postponed, so I was getting disappointed until I told myself, “This is what you believe in and what you always talk about. You don’t know what’s good for you and what’s bad for you.” It turns out that it was the ideal option for me because when it was time to film it, I was much more artistically mature. With seven drafts in between, the film had become something entirely different, even better than what we were going to work with in the first place. I personally benefitted while filming it and was transformed as a human being. I learned to just give in to whatever comes with the flow.

Which was the toughest role to play? Why? The role I’m doing now, which is Taha El Zahar. Another one was a drug addict, which was very intense. After shooting, I actually became really numb because it had affected me deeply. I missed the environment and even the room my character lived in. It also depends on the amount of details incorporated within the character. For my role as El Zahar, I have my own perfume, my own walk, and even a specific weight. I lost around six or seven kilos for this role. I stopped working out for months in advance. I played drums for a year and a half for just one day worth of shooting. It was intense.

Who are the local and international actors you look up to?

International I would definitely say Daniel Louis, Christian Bale. As for local, I would say, Mahmoud Abdel Aziz, Ahmed Zaki, Mahmoud Hemeida and Mahmoud Morsi. We have great talents here in Egypt.

What are your ambitions or goals that you aspire to? I want to do as much as I can by producing art and having a positive influence. For a while, I used to think about building a legacy and leaving something for people to remember me by. Now, I just think about the present. It’s about what I can do now. I don’t care anymore about legacy because I won’t be there to watch how people remember me after I die. At first, my achievement was linked with becoming content, which is wrong. I should be content all the time, not only when I achieve something. Achievements simply came along the way as I kept moving forward. I like to stay active, acting, producing, and writing… If I’m not content, I wouldn’t be able to do them well or enjoy them, so I just chose to be content. Achievements, prizes and wages will come anyway.


HOME

Haven Alps in the

By Daniela Bonetto Photography by Francis Amiand Interior design by Humbert & Poyet


What defines Humbert & Poyet is their low-key luxury architecture. The two architects, Emil Humbert and Christophe Poyet, joined forces to form Humbert & Poyet. These design and fashion enthusiasts decided to pool their skills to provide a full range of services from construction to interior design. They both studied in Paris, the former as a state-qualified architect (Paris-Belleville National School of Architecture graduate) and the latter as a CFAI interior designer (Académie Charpentier graduate). It all began in 2007 when Emil Humbert, from Paris, opened his architecture firm and Christophe Poyet, from Monaco, had just graduated. Humbert & Poyet was founded a year after they first met: “It was natural, I instantly knew we’d work together,” says Emil Humbert.

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Their projects focus on elegant and meticulous designs to create timeless spaces using premium materials such as stone, wood and bronze. Naturally, the most important thing is to reflect the client’s personality and respect the soul of the site. With that in mind they designed a sumptuously splendid 650 m² private chalet in the Swiss Alps. Gstaad. The chalet located in Gstaad emanates style, comfort and elegance. The flooring in the living room is dark brown tinted oak and works seamlessly with the rest of the furniture. The duo has added accents of colour but nothing too bold to deter the eyes away from the flow of the room. The fireplace was designed by Humbert & Poyet in blue limestone of Hainaut, bush-hammered finish, larch board and is a beautiful statement piece.


The dining room is very much a collaboration with the client to create the perfect entertaining space with just enough dramatic touches.

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The bedrooms continue with the dark brown tinted oak which is the perfect backdrop to the airy rooms. In the room containing the bespoke bunk bed a fun midnight cashmere tartan fabric from Loro Piana was used for the walls.


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The kitchen is a chef’s delight with Hainaut blue stone floor with a dark, softened finish. The centre piece is the La Cornue cooker in a matte and polished brass finish. The extractor fan above is bespoke by the designers and is hammered brass.


In the bathroom, the duo decided to use Nero Marquinia marble mosaic and Carrara + black tinted oak parquet flooring. The walls are cladded in moulded Nero Marquinia marble with a softened finish which is perfectly juxtaposed with all the brilliance of the snow outside.

humbertpoyet.com

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HOT ADDRESS

Aï RESTAURANT V I E N N A By Daniela Bonetto


Located in the heart of the city’s first district, in the historical yet fashionable Golden Quarter of Vienna, resides Gatserelia Design’s Ai restaurant; the innovative Asian restaurant that is set to bring a stylish and edgy new vibe to Vienna’s urban dining scene. Gatserelia Design’s Ai (Japanese for love) 130-cover restaurant is set over two floors and includes additional bar seating. Ai Restaurant incorporates a robata grill, sushi bar and cocktail lounge opened for lunch, dinner, and drinks. Corporate executive chef Samuel Wilkes has worked together with head chef Sören Herzig (formally of Juan Amador’s 2 Star Michelin restaurant) to create signature dishes such as Baltic sea cod with red yuzo kosho and Asian slaw, and Alpine beef tenderloin with soy butter and truffle potato. Presiding over the sushi bar is Japanese chef Tun San who has spent nearly two decades perfecting his craft in the Chiba Region of Japan. The cocktail collection is equally as impressive, with Isabella Lombardo, one of Vienna’s top mixologists, presenting a selection of creations inspired by Japanese pop art. Surrounded by a wellheeled clientele, at Ai one can enjoy not only refined cuisine, but also can enjoy this perfect location, ambience, service and a stunning aesthetic. Ai is his first in Vienna and is a testament to his love of embracing the old by introducing the new. Gatserelia Design has achieved a sense of dynamism through the use of powerful lines and contemporary features, whilst also keeping the opulent, sophisticated feel that distinguishes this neighbourhood from others. “We always take the risk of making a statement, knowing that some people may love the place at first glance while others may need to adapt,” says Gregory, “We did the same with Play in Dubai, and I recall doing so in the nineties with Boa, in Toronto. Whilst everyone was envisioning minimalistic interiors, I decided to create a completely baroque-style Boa café. It is, in fact, what jumpstarted my career at the time.”

The absence of perfect geometry in the existing site allowed Gatserelia Design to embrace uniqueness and present true originality to the Viennese. Set in an already deconstructed space, the design of this space does not dictate a specific structure but rather embraces the existing by featuring geometrical and sculptured elements, alongside a warm palette of materials. Besides the sculptural staircase and glass-enclosed elevator that animate the movement from the robata grill to the sushi bar, the lighting and ceiling are key features. Round suspensions on the ground floor are designed to soften the sharp edges of its surroundings. On the top floor, Gatserelia Design used a dynamic copper grid to conceal the ceiling’s technical components whilst also playing with light and lines, transforming by the end of the night the ambiance of a restaurant into that of a happening lounge – a nod to Vienna’s future. Awash with elegance and warmth through the choice of materials and colour palette, Gatserelia Design chose Badoglio imperial marble which lays noble on the floor and walls; copper is omnipresent in the panels and lighting features, creating warm reflections of clinking glasses and chattering silhouettes; leather is meticulously stitched to the bar and walls and the American walnut has been used on the tables. A bouquet of unexpected shades of grey, blue, yellow and orange, all work in combination on the upholstered furniture, leaving the entire space noticeably absent of any kind of white - a homogeneous contradiction in the Golden Quarter of Vienna. airestaurant.co

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HAPPENINGS

Be My Valentine

Endless Love SEMIRAMIS INTERCONTINENTAL Celebrate this international day of love with your loved ones and choose amidst an array of options at the Semiramis. For an exclusive fun-filled night of romance head to Teeba Ballroom and listen to Cairo’s premier crooner Ahmed Harfoush. Their signature resto-bar and lounge, India along the Nile, brings you an unmatched romantic experience in a contemporary and modern setting. Indulge in an exquisite a la carte dinner and dance along to our resident DJs tunes. Serenaded by the trio band, go to The Grill’s fabulous Valentine’s Gala dinner on February 14th and relish in a five-course dinner. At Birdcage, the tranquil waters, serene settings & creative Thai chefs bring out a special ambiance this Valentine’s Day. Chef Narong’s irresistible à la carte menus are undoubtedly spectacular and will surely tantalize your taste buds.

Revolving Night GRAND NILE TOWER Grand Nile Tower invites you to the most spectacular and highest restaurant Egypt at the Revolving Restaurant, where you can enjoy a memorable candle lit dinner while the music melodies will make it an exceptional romantic night. This entire exquisite experience with an astonishing 360-degree panorama of the Nile and city of Cairo makes the Revolving Restaurant Cairo’s one of the most romantic meeting places.

Day of Romance CONRAD CAIRO Celebrate the day of romance and love at Conrad Cairo where Cupid is preparing special festivities at your favourite venues. A unique opportunity to celebrate the special day the Chinese way as this year both Valentine and the lunar Chinese New Year celebrations fall within the same week. The Kamala Restaurant is hosting five Chefs from far-away China who have prepared a multiple course Chinese set menu with specialities from China’s various provinces. The set-menu includes a complimentary glass of local sparkling wine or a sparkling mocktail accompanied by Ghada on the Pan-Pipes. will offer an authentic modern Lebanese set menu while enjoying tunes by guitarist Sherif. OAK’s stylish atmosphere creates the perfect night for couples while they sip on a complementary glass of local sparkling wine or a sparkling mocktail.


A Passionate Affair JW MARRIOTT CAIRO Rekindle the flames of your love and party with passion with your partner at the lavish ambiance of the JW Marriott Cairo. This February 14, their culinary professionals will curate engaging 4-course set dinner menus, served at Cucina, JW’s Steakhouse, Plateau and Lemongrass. Savor a Valentine’s dinner buffet at Mirage Café. La Patisserie is featuring heart shaped tarts to add to the delicious drama of the day!

Seaside Serenity KEMPINSKI SOMA BAY Seize the season of love and treat your loved one to a romantic hideaway in a haven by the dazzling and sunny Red Sea shores. Pamper your beloved in every possible way with a series of surprises starting with a bed of roses adornment upon arrival and a savory strawberry cake. During your stay, spoil your special someone with a breakfast served in your room and one romantic aroma bath specially tailored for utmost relaxation and soothing. Create a memory that will last for a lifetime with a private dinner by the beach. Relish a savory romantic dinner presenting a truly seductive menu.

A Unique Celebration LE MERIDIEN CAIRO AIRPORT Not a fan of Valentine’s Day? Escape all the romance this valentine as Live Sports Bar is celebrating with all the single ladies! Gather your friends and party the night away with live performance of Hisham Tiba. The party’s motto? No hearts. No hugs. No flowers. However if you are a fan of the season of love, Evoo is the place to be. Spark romance and savor the moment this valentine and pamper your significant other with a romantic buffet dinner.

Magnifique Romance SOFITEL CAIRO NILE EL GEZIRAH Enjoy magical moments during Valentine’s Day at Sofitel El Gezirah. Share special time together…savor intimate dinners…take sunset strolls and moonlight walks in the Promenade. Delight in the luminous glow at Le Duplex bar & Manipuri Indian restaurant, explore the Moroccan delights at La Palmeraie or relax near the soothing Jacuzzi with an hour massage for two at SO SPA. Discover the Magnifique Valentines packages at Le Deck or Casa Mia Italian restaurant and experience Sofitel’s perfect setting for romantic memories that will last forever.

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Fairytale Valentine THE NILE RITZ-CARLTON Give your Valentine’s dinner a vintage and elegant twist by finding inspiration in the fabulous 40s at Vivo; the Italian gastronomic restaurant. Couples will dine and dance 1940s style, in black and white. Couples can relive the magic of nostalgic music as they listen to the voice of love; Frank Sinatra all night long. At Nox, DJ Sam will be spinning the best soul and Motown love songs inspired by the 80s. The night will be filled with young vibes, nostalgic music, dancing, bar bites, hot cocktails, and a surprise performance. Overlooking the most romantic view of the Nile River and Cairo skyline, an exclusive rooftop dinner is also an option. The private dining rooftop venue has been transformed into a breathtaking romantic wonderland. Couples can treat themselves to exclusive access to the terrace space, with only 10 tables. 10 couples will get the chance to experience Valentine’s like nobody else.

Celebrate Your Valentine RENAISSANCE CAIRO Spoil your loved one on Valentine’s Day at Cairo’s hidden gem Renaissance Cairo Mirage City Hotel. Indulge your better half in a charming ambiance with a scrumptious dinner buffet at Citron, or Chinoix, their Chinese restaurant with its inspired set menu complemented with live entertainment. Don’t forget to surprise your partner by gifting them one of the delicious Valentine’s Day cakes from En Passant.

Say “I Love you” SONESTA HOTEL CAIRO Come & spend a memorable night with your valentine at La Gondola with a charming candle-lit dinner, and experience an unforgettable valentine occasion, while enjoying a selection of gourmet Italian choices in a truly romantic atmosphere with our house band playing your favorite tunes. If you want it Lebanese style, their Chef invites you to taste his Lebanese creations at Baalbak. Enjoy a special valentine dinner, an exciting ambiance with live entertainment & Belly dancer. To heat the night up and add some beats to it, Sindbad discotheque is having a special night on Valentine’s Day, with special music, special Menu and Special Décor. For a full pampering gift, spoil your better half at Sonesta Cairo by booking the Valentine’s day package that includes one night accommodation in a double room with breakfast a superb relaxing massage treatment and a delightful romantic dinner at the Italian restaurant “La Gondola”.


Restaurant & CafĂŠ


Month of Love ROYAL MAXIM PALACE KEMPINSKI Because one day isn’t enough to express all the love you have for your beloved ones, Royal Maxim Palace Kempinski will be celebrating a full month of love instead! Head to one of their four flagship restaurants for signature date nights. Because couples who eat together, stay together! For Valentine’s Day, you could head to the Romanov for the tantalizing “From Russia with Love” menu

Romantic Gift SHERATON CAIRO Get the romantic getaway you need in the heart of the city at Sheraton Cairo hotel with THE valentine’s package for couples that includes a BB room, romantic dinner at Giannini’s and a Gift Box! What is a valentine’s day without a memorable romantic dinner? At Giannini’s couples can enjoy a romantic dinner of a five course set menu, two glasses of sparkling wine and as well as a gift box.

Ideal Getaway SHERATON MONTAZAH Looking for the ideal getaway to spoil your partner on Valentine’s Day? The Sheraton Montazah Hotel Alexandria is the perfect destination for couples looking for romantic Valentine’s holiday. Create romance to remember without leaving the room if you’re in a brightly decorated surrounding overlooking the Mediterranean and the lush Montazah parks. Enjoy the sauna and massage treats and live night entertainment. Indulge in the Valentine’s gala party and dinner at the Caesar Bar where romance begins with the love songs of their trio band, Alexandrian Singer “Samir Elal” and the belly dancing. The chefs shall be also there to prepare a tempting superb menu and a freshly delicious heart shaped Valentine cake for you and your sweetheart at La Mamma Restaurant.


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FLAIR 2-1018  
FLAIR 2-1018  
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