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Worldwide investment opportunities, best luxury brands and services, business, new ideas and trends

Elegant Toughing it in Texas / Panerai Classic Yachts Challenge / Objects of desire: Jewels & Timepieces / Desirable Dubrovnik / Polo in one session / The Mille Miglia


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ilife contents

summer 2012 international investment luxury entrepreneur business



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breaking america: We find out how Personal Asset Lender, borro is making waves across the pond and why the US is their growth market

the business of art: Nik Kalsi gives some simple pointers to potential investors in the growing sphere of Contemporary Art summer wines: Giles Smith Walker guides us through a selection of gems for summery afternoons and heavenly garden parties

Q&A. One minute entrepreneur: Tycoon Rahul Nanda describes his humble beginnings and his plan to build the number one brand in the global security industry and a $10 billion security group by 2020 International life wealth network presents...: An exclusive snapshot of Swiss Artist Dante Rubli’s London exhibition fashion’s a breeze: Fashion flies the flag with beautiful people, setting, clothes and accessories on board the Christina O MIlle Miglia: The ultimate race in a country that can rightly claim the greatest passion for the motorcar. The home of Ferrari, Lamborghini and Maserati. Yves de Contades races for International Life best of london: International Life rounds up their pick of key cultural events and the best the capital has to offer this summer tech/gadgets: Rocket belts, brainwave headsets and Lalique crystal speakers. The future is here and it’s all luxury.. Watches & Jewellery gallery: Cool French retro watches. Individual, handmade jewellery pieces, just for you Small gift gallery: A wonderful selection of ‘must have’ gifts

below: Art investment is no gamble, ask The Card Players by Paul Cézanne middle: Bolney Winery in the South Downs bottom: Vincent Poole’s unique artworks


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london PROPERTY: Beauchamp Estates property supremo Gary Hersham explains why as far as the global wealthy are concerned, London is the Capital of the World international property: International Life discovers Dubrovnik, now one of the most desirable destinations on the Adriatic and runs the rule over the impressive Sun Gardens resort travel: International Life visits San Antonio to see why it attracts 26 million visitors a year and finds a vibrant modern city and enjoys the serenity of Picosa Ranch Yacht: The Formula One of Sailing. International Life’s Yves de Contades went down to Cowes to sail in the 2011 Extreme Sailing Series™ travel: Joanna Malek revels in the diversity and energy of Istanbul and recommends the luxury and cultural delights of the Aegean resort of Bodrum travel: Spain’s infamous Costa del Sol had a reputation for beaches and popular tourism until now. Levanah Reyes-Wainwright reveals the plush side of Spain Psychology: Cecilia d’Felice examines our very modern anxieties and needless attachments to money and celebrity and implores us to re-evaluate our adherence and unquestioning responses to the media machine Film: Martin Guttridge-Hewitt writes his celluloid homage to Vienna and finds romance on every corner in one of Europe’s most picturesque cities Film: Bernd Talasch’s pictures reveal a man that’s prepared to wait and wait some more to catch his subject in thought, relaxed, natural, even playful a million miles away from the glib, red carpet stare DINING: Iqbal Wahhab writes in praise of Heston and his attempt to put the emphasis back on food. He also ventures into the Cotswold countryside in search of a decent return on his culinary scouting mission Polo: How much can you learn in a day? Well with first class instructors (equine and human), rather a lot actually, as we’re up and running in no time food & Drink: Levanah Reyes-Wainwright interviews Eric Lanlard AKA Cake Boy, master patissier and twice winner of the prestigious Continental Patissier of the Year futurology: Ian Stewart discusses the relevance and impact of mathematics on contemporary life from Cancer research to marshalling the derivatives market BEAUTY: Levanah Reyes-Wainwright goes in search of the most luxurious treatments, to capture the feeling of a modern day Cleopatra


Haute Joaillerie ColleCtion exclusively available at Chopard Boutiques

masthead International Life Wealth Network media platforms: quarterly magazine / events / website / e-newsletter / social media / video / e-commerce

Summer 2012


hat a fantastic time to be resident or visiting London in summer 2012. There’s the Queen’s Jubilee celebrations complete with a 700 boat flotilla, followed by the national institution of Wimbledon, for the global tennis audience. Then there’s the distraction of Euro 2012 and although not in London, it will have the nation reaching for their flags to wave on England in Ukraine and Poland (joint hosts - it’s all partnerships these days!) Let’s not forget what’s billed as ‘the greatest show on earth’ - the Olympic games. However, amongst these world beating, once-in-a-lifetime events, is the opportunity to engage with the best of London, with an esteemed list of glorious restaurants, cafes, galleries, museums, shops and parks throwing open their doors with initiative and invention and showing the world why this City is so unique.

Publishers Managing Director: Yves de Contades Managing Director: Peter Doherty

Art Investment specialist, Nik Kalsi travelled to Abu Dhabi and Dubai in search of the latest enfant terribles of the Art world and returned with some key pointers on investing in this often misunderstood sector.

Roast Restaurant supremo, Iqbal Wahhab OBE proves his pen is mightier than any butter knife as he waxes lyrical on his visit to the Cotswolds and applauds Mr Blumenthal for putting food first in his latest venture.

Wine Investment specialist, Giles Smith Walker, reveals who really invented sparkling wine (and it wasn’t the French), then draws up his own hit list of summer delights for your showpiece garden party.

Levanah Reyes tells us why culinary maestro Eric Lanyard takes the biscuit... the cake and any other pastry on the menu and made them the guiltiest indulgence in London.

City Girl and world traveller Joanna Malek is Istanbul’s latest cheerleader. Joanna makes a compelling case for an exotic long weekend, then urges us to look at Bodrum as a prime holiday destination.

Dr Cecilia d’Felice, Psychologist and author of ‘21 Days to a New You’ tells us why we should dispense with the notion that success can only be measured by dollars and celebrity and re-evaluate our approach to life if we want to find happiness.

Editorial team Editorial Director: Peter Doherty Editor-in-Chief: Yves de Contades Martin Guttridge-Hewitt Advertising Sales: 020 7558 8690 m 07957 246 845 m 07939 285 296 Editorial Specialists Business: Maisha Frost Art Investment: Nik Kalsi Wine Investment: Giles Smith Walker London/Travel: Kris Griffiths Luxury Brands: Peter Doherty Travel/Yachts/Tech: Yves de Contades Film: Martin Guttridge-Hewitt Fashion/travel: Joanna Malek Food & Drink/Travel: Iqbal Wahhab OBE Food & Drink/Scent: Levanah Reyes-Wainwright Psychology: Dr Cecilia d’Felice Arts/Travel/India: Priyadarshini Kohli Beauty: Geraldine Shaker Cars: Rob Scorah Cars: Timothy Stevens Fashion Photography: Yves de Contades Fashion Stylist: Sara Darling Hair & Make-up: Jennie Lam Front cover credits: Models: Tony Helskens @ MandP Models Natalie Maury @ Lenis Tony - Grey double breasted suit: Paul Costelloe White shirt: Boss. Pocket square: Boss Belt: Paul Smith. Purple loafers: Oliver Sweeney Natalie - Dress: Agatha Hambi. Necklaces x 2: Hugo Boss Clutch bag: Kzeniya. Shoes: Chloe

To subscribe or purchase the magazine visit: International Life is published quarterly by International Life Magazine Ltd., 35 Morland House, Marsham St, London SW1P 4JH. Registered Company No: 06532821. Telephone: 020 7558 8690. Nothing in this magazine may be reproduced in whole or in part without the written permission of the publishers. Transparencies and other material submitted for publication are sent at the owner’s risk and, while every care is taken, neither International Life Magazine Ltd, nor their agents accept any liability for loss or damage. Although International Life Magazine Ltd has endeavoured to ensure that all information inside the magazine is correct, prices and details may be subject to change. Opinions expressed are those of the contributors. Always seek independent advice before making any investment which is at your own risk. For back issues: email for details.


Best of London International Life delve through the many delights to be had in London this summer. From stunning Olympic themed artwork and spa treatments to off-the-track heritage and history - not to mention magical costume displays and a fascinating selection of urban adventures from the East End locations featuring Banksy artwork to lifting a gold bar at the Bank of England

Graham Dean New Work 2012: Fitter, Quicker, Longer Fitter, Quicker, Longer is the powerful new exhibition from Graham Dean, one of Britain’s leading contemporary artists. Covering a cross-section of Olympic and Paralympic sports, from the grace and streamlined beauty of the diver to the more brutal - but no less sensual images of weight lifters and wrestlers, these are works which will leave a lifetime’s legacy.

collectable. His work is internationally acclaimed and examples can be seen in museums and galleries such as the Guggenheim N.Y and V&A in London. David Gill has exhibited Bonetti’s work for over 20 years and was attracted by the sculptural quality of the pieces. The new collection includes a ‘Cabinet Organ’, the ‘Strata Cabinet’ and ‘Abyss Table’, all of which are sold exclusively through the gallery. Later this year the new David Gill Gallery will present a major collection of work by Fredrikson Stallard during the London Design Festival (14-23 September 2012). Further exhibitions planned for later this year will feature new works by Gaetano Pesce and Barnaby Barford. David Gill Gallery 2-4 King Street (corner of Duke St) St James’s, London SW1 02031956555

The Gold Medal of Spa treatments The Spa at Brown’s Hotel has devised a series of treatments based around different Olympic sports to help guests unwind after a gym session or tiring day. The Summer ‘sault’ (£110 for 90 mins) a full body treatment, relieves tension with an invigorating Dead Sea salt scrub, a smoothing coffee blossom body cream and express pedicure. The Brown’s Relaxathon (£190 for 90 mins) - a must for all athletes - includes an assessment from renowned SP&Co Gym ( using a Functional Movement Screen to create a personal fitness plan, followed by a Brown’s Fusion massage to reduce stress and muscle fatigue. Finally, ‘Backstroke’ (£70 for 45 mins) soothes and invigorates tired back muscles, with a Carita back cleanse and scrub and a massage using essential oils.

The exhibition runs from the 17th July 12th August at London’s Waterhouse & Dodd, 26 Cork Street, W1

New work by Mattia Bonetti The newly opened David Gill Gallery in King Street, St James’s will be showing new work by Mattia Bonetti from 8 June to 27 August. Bonetti’s remarkable pieces are derived from fine art, fashion and architecture; they are contemporary, daring, beautifully executed and highly

above left: Graham Dean conveys the streamlined beauty of the diver - part of his summer exhibition above middle: Get in shape for the Olympics with a choice of specially designed treatments at Brown’s above: Eat your heart out Gaudi. The surreal, magical and highly collectible work of Mattia Bonetti


best of london

exclusives. Look out for the impressive Bottleshop with 16 planned to open in the Middle East and a further 11 planned for the UK. Models Own Bottleshop, Westfield London, Shepherds Bush

Summer with a swing

Browse a unique collection at the world’s most famous costume house Angels the Costumiers is the oldest and longest-established costume house in the world, and has provided apparel for 33 Best Costume Oscar-winning films including Titanic, Shakespeare in Love and Star Wars. Normally only accessible to film and television industry professionals, Angels is throwing open its doors for a select number of dates, which will allow the public to tour its cavernous warehouse filled with a staggering 6 million items and eight miles of rails! Places are limited and must be booked in advance. Angels, 1 Garrick Road, London 20th July, 26th July, 2nd August, 24th August, 7th September, 21st September

English hotel, The Goring are coming together to launch a luxurious ‘London via the World’ bathing menu to celebrate the city’s eccentric, vibrant character. Guests staying in the hotel between 15 July and 15 September 2012 will be able to choose the ultimate pampering experience from one of the five countries that make up Molton Brown’s new Global Heroes MMXII collection of body washes. The experience includes the services of a Goring Bath Butler who will draw a wonderfully scented bubblebath, and prepare the perfect cocktail, inspired by the ingredients and destinations of the bath collection. Guests will be invited to choose from one of 5 experiences, each priced at £20.12. The Goring Beeston Place, London SW1 T 020 7396 9000

Highly Polished

Choose from a truly luxurious bathing menu This summer, London connoisseurs Molton Brown and the quintessentially


Always innovating, always exciting, Models Own launch a unique new shopping experience with the opening of the first Bottleshop. Taking the shopping experience literally and to a new level, Models Own do things differently. “We’re asking people to actually shop in the world’s largest bottle of nail polish!” says Mark Rodol, CEO. Selling an extensive range of trend-setting colour cosmetics, in an amazing spectrum of shades and in store

Urban Golf is an indoor golf operator with three stunning London locations offering a virtual golf experience in state-of-the-art simulators where groups or individuals can play a round on the world’s top golf courses. Each of the three London venues - in Soho, Kensington and Smithfield - has its own unique design and fashionable surroundings. It’s a fantastic place to eat, drink and play golf in a relaxed atmosphere making it an ideal spot to visit during the Olympic Games. Urban Golf Kensington Urban Golf Soho Urban Golf Smithfield T 0207 248 8600

Urban adventures Street art, gold bars and haunted houses - take an Urban Adventure. Get a unique insight into the capital in just a few hours, by going off the beaten track to see hidden gems as well as classic landmarks on a London Urban Adventure. See the streets where Banksy made his name on the ‘East End Uncovered’ tour, lift a gold bar in the Bank of England on the ‘City Streets Explorer’, or cruise past England’s most haunted building aboard a classic English bicycle on the guided ‘Cycle to Hampton Court’. Tours depart daily, locations and prices vary. Advance booking essential, visit:

Ever felt you’re not being told the whole story? Black Plaques London iPhone/iPad app memorialises stories you don’t find proudly mounted on a wall - the embarrassing, macabre, mysterious and peculiar, told with a healthy dose of irreverent humour. There’s a Black Plaque on St Paul’s

best of london

Cathedral recounting murder by red hot needle up the nose, one on Big Ben on how putrid sewer gas was pumped up it and one in Covent Garden telling of home-made sheep gut condoms. The app can be read like a book or used when out and about and costs just £2.99.

Switched on collage artwork Vincent Poole is a London based artist who produces stunning 3D backlit collages, somewhere between graphic design and fine art. His work is highly regarded and has been acquired by numerous international corporate, public and private collections. Each piece is painstakingly put together like an intricate jigsaw puzzle and represents the fast moving environment in the different London postcodes. In addition to the coloured background backlit collages, Vincent can also produce coloured duraclear collages and diasec prints. His main works can sell for anything between £15,000 and £45,000, while his range of prints retail for around £1,500 to £3,800. For further information or to visit his studios, please contact Vincent Poole at Studio Eleven, Octavia House 235-241 Union Street, London SE1 T +44 (0) 7833171065

left page, bottom: London bathing experience left page, top: The Bottleshop by Models Own above and right: The greatest walk-in wardrobe in the world at Angels Costumiers top left: The illuminated work of Vincent Poole top right: Black Plaque’s amusing London bottom right: Swing in the City at Urban Golf middle: Capital Urban Adventures



“Best Breakfast In London” - the Good food GuIde and the tImes

“roast has a menu to make BrItIsh cookInG cooL and an envIronment to make It sexy” - London eatInG

A Day in the life of Roast... 7am Breakfast, and the day Begins... As the traders of Borough Market start to appear one by one, the first breakfast dishes start to roll out of the kitchen heading for the early birds eager to devour the best brekkie in town... Aromas of smoky bacon, crusty toast and fresh teas fill the air, as the restaurant quickly begins to fill. A sense of excitement begins to grow - The ‘Full Borough’ has been served no doubt – a celebration of the Great British Breakfast, with all the usual components, with a couple of special treats – Ramsay of Carluke Black pudding and Roast’s very own special recipe sausages!

12pm the lunch rush... One hundred and fifty diners are about to arrive, hungry and awaiting a feast of the most wholesome, fresh and seasonal produce our shores have to offer. Canny concoctions such as hot scotch duck eggs with pea shoots and piccalilli fill the starter list. As cries of ‘pound a punnet’ echo from the market below, guests wash down a glass of the exclusive Roast Bacchus white wine, whilst enjoying flavours such as cold poached organic salmon or our house favourite – slow roast pork belly, crispy crackling and Bramley apple sauce.

6pm dinner overlooking st paul’s cathedral... The restaurant is alive, atmosphere buzzing as dinner gets underway. Soft jazz piano can be heard from the bar, among the pouring of fancy drinks and ‘Bloody Tasty Mary’s’ for the after work sharpener. Melt in the mouth ox tongue can be seen amongst the tables, a staple of British cuisine, while others take on the 14oz Shorthorn rib eye steak. The restaurant is in its prime, people eating, drinking, smiling whilst enjoying the special sense of occasion.

iPhone and iPad users: download the free Roast app!

ROAST: The Floral Hall, Borough Market, Stoney Street, London SE1 1TL T: 0845 034 7300 | |

11pm service ends... As Borough Market winds to a close, the last of the restaurant guests slowly depart. Life in the restaurant is still not over...clean up and prep for tomorrow. Just another day in the busy life of Roast...

E Events

U Ci Universal


B R Behavioural


En L In P Bu S D Co Entrepreneur








Le W M I Br O Ps F Ma Ex Leader










Sp C G Di A Cu H Sk Specialist




International Life’s Business section discovers a British company making waves across the pond. Personal Asset lender borro tell us how they’re breaking America.





T Transaction

The buzzword for 2012 just has to be ‘portfolio diversification’ as many investors seek to look outside the rather narrow basket they placed their prized ‘eggs’ in. Nik Kalsi (Art) and Giles Smith-Walker (Wine) give some strong pointers to assist with forays into their respective sectors. Tycoon Rahul Nanda talks about his own business journey from humble beginnings in Bombay to building an empire in the Security industry and his $10 billion target. Fresh from conquering London with a dazzling exhibition of his Iconic car series, (beautifully crafted in gold), Dante Rubli is fast becoming a collector’s dream. The queue starts here.


Le Leader

Loan Rangers What’s your business strategy in these uncertain times? ‘To expand of course’ says Personal Asset Lender, borro - not in emerging markets but in the world’s biggest economy. International Life takes up the story...


ou’ve literally had to exist on another planet in the last couple of years to have been unaware of the crisis in the Eurozone, but amongst the media noise the more observant would have noticed that the US economy, to paraphrase a certain Mr Gump, has not been a ‘box of chocolates’ either. A steady flow of horror stories originating Stateside, almost carried over on a mist of gloom, have included rising unemployment and home repossessions, not to mention a trade deficit of $214,667,805,803 (17/5/12). So is this the sort of region you’d want to expand your business? Well the answer is yes, if you have something that addresses a need in the market, like short-term financing, crucial for new business

business owners. It seems US businesses and indeed individuals are suffering the same fate as their asset rich European cousins, a distinct lack of liquidity. borro addresses that need by offering loans against highvalue personal assets such as luxury cars, antiques, fine art and jewellery, for the highest possible values, as determined by expert appraisers, think Sotheby’s, Christie’s and Bonhams. Another big attraction is there are no credit checks and cash is available within 24 hours. borro will lend from $1,000 to $1,000,000 depending on the asset. There are a number of reasons small business owners request loans ranging from cash flow, refinancing, taking advantage of business opportunities, purchasing stock, property refinancing

customers. They’ve understood that the key challenge in any new market is to identify what needs to be done differently, how it needs to be done and to implement this quickly. Every market has its nuances so adapting their business model to the ‘American way’ has been key to their success. America seems their natural home. Think about it, they’re immediate solution providers, they give short-term loan agreements against assets, and ensure quick turnaround and ready cash. And they’ve made themselves accessible, with a HQ in mid-town Manhattan and proximity to 2.5 million small business owners and sole proprietorships in the greater New York metropolitan area alone. Couple this with an online facility and you would bet that the rest

By the end of this year we expect to be lending the same amount month-on-month in the U.S. as we are lending the UK right now growth. It’s also a part of the world that believes in consumerism. Americans love to consume. Flying the flag for British business is borro, the rising star in personal asset lending that has made considerable headway in the UK, navigating its choppy market conditions. In fact, within two months of its US launch the good ship borro was already making its own waves in the emerging category of personal asset lending. In one month it had surpassed the $1 million dollar mark in loans to individuals and small


or just paying tax bills. Additionally individuals who use borro’s services may do so for planning holidays, paying unexpected bills or meeting school fees. As a UK company entering the U.S. market, borro found one of the initial challenges was gaining trust with both clients and strategic partners; from financial advisers, accountants and wealth managers to tax advisers. That meant borro adapting their model in line with US business practice. It involved them putting in procedures like advancing all paperwork to their

of America won’t be far behind. Paul Aitken, borro’s CEO, is understandably bullish about the future and forecasts ‘By the end of this year we expect to be lending the same amount month-on-month in the U.S. as we are lending the UK right now.’ In a sector blighted by small print and unscrupulous practice borro have addressed any concern about transparency by detailing how assets are stored and vaulted and by putting rates on the table from the outset. They’re also quick to point out that there is no

risk to customer’s credit history and loans can be redeemed at any time without penalty. Their reputation has been further enhanced by winning the prestigious Gold Award at the 2012 International Stevie Awards for Sales & Customer Service. As a growing UK business, borro’s

performance has indicated they are certainly on the right course and their CEO is not a man to tread water, promising ‘a number of new product ideas… in the coming months.’ We keenly anticipate the next instalment.


A Art

The art of the Portfolio Nik Kalsi shares his thoughts on contemporary art as an alternative asset class and gives some pointers on The Art of Portfolio Diversification


Over the past seven years, the Qatari royal family has spent an estimated £1bn on western art


rt is about life, the art market is about money proclaimed the art world’s biggest seller, Mr Damien Hirst. Modern Art is now viewed as a creditable alternative to mainstream asset classes. According to the Mei Moses All Art Index; the art market returned an impressive 11% gain in 2011, outperforming both the S&P 500 and FTSE for a second consecutive year. The Mei Moses has beaten the S&P 500 in six of the last 10 years, with an average annual return of 8 per cent compared with 2.7 per cent for the benchmark US index. In the last couple of years, auction houses around the world have reported record sales as investors have shown more knowledge and interest in contemporary art, particularly in the Middle East. Last year the Middle East was ranked the world’s biggest buyer of modern art by the Art Newspaper. Over the past seven years, the Qatari royal family has spent an estimated £1bn on western art. Recent acquisitions are believed to include Mark Rothko’s White Center (Yellow, Pink and Lavender on Rose), bought for £45.9m in 2007, Damien Hirst’s pill cabinet Lullaby Spring, bought for £9.7m in the same year, and the last privately held version of Paul Cézanne’s The Card Players, bought in

2011 for £157m, a record price. Art has always been acknowledged to possess features that make it a particularly attractive alternative asset class, amongst seasoned investors. Following the financial crisis in 2008, alternative tangible assets such as art, precious metals, gemstones and fine wines have also begun to attract the attention of mainstream investors especially as a way to diversify portfolios against the negative effects of volatile equity markets and risk of high inflation. If you’re thinking about making an art investment, 2012 is a good time. Here is my advice on how to diversify an investment portfolio with art: Know the factors driving art values. Establishing the value and potential value of art can be as difficult as spotting the next Damien Hirst. But the factors which can influence prices for artist’s work are easier to identify. These include: the popularity and reputation of an artist, the views of art critics and previous buyers, especially if they are celebrities or high profile investors. Go for aesthetic pleasure. Art is a long-term commitment. Buy what you would like to see on your walls. While sometimes you can manage to sell artwork that is in demand instantly, on the flipside it can usually take months to resell a less sought after piece. Buy the best you can afford. It might appear attractive to buy unknown artists before their paintings rocket in value but the odds of success and often quality


of the art make it a high risk strategy. Owning the best art by established or emerging artists has the most potential for appreciation over time.

top left: Kate Moss by Banksy top right: Girl with hair ribbon by Roy Litchenstein above left: Gassin by Jeremy Barlow middle right: Flag Painting by Kamrooz Aram bottom right: as above so below by Nik Nejad other page: Zirconyl Chloride by Damien Hirst

Finally look after your Investment. In the long term, attrition is one of the basic reasons why art increases in value. If you look after your art investment,

it will reciprocate by offering you more rewards than you ever possibly imagined. Nik Kalsi:

W Wine

English Fizz the original Sparkler? With the Queen’s Jubilee and London Olympics this summer, all eyes are on the UK. Wine expert Giles Smith Walker selects the perfect summer accompaniment with which to enjoy the festivities


nvestment and climate change over the last decade have contributed to the dramatic increase in the quality of English vineyards putting English fizz on a par with sparkling wines from all over the world. So my verdict is home grown fizz all the way! It is worth noting that those enticing, seductive fine bubbles you see in Champagne were first created not by the good Benedictine monk of Epernay, Dom Pérignon, (who is usually credited with the discovery of Champagne) but by an Englishman called Dr. Christopher Merrett who presented a paper to the Royal Society in 1662 stating that “our wine coopers of recent times use vast quantities of sugar and molasses to all sorts of wine to make them brisk and sparkling”. This science of the sparkles was discovered 6 years before Dom Pérignon and 30 years before the French claimed the addition of sugar was seen as the key to the secondary fermentation which produces the bubbles. The combination of Sussex having a similar chalk escarpment from across the Channel in Champagne and a classic growing climate has contributed to a huge rise and popularity in English Sparkling wines. It shouldn’t go unnoticed that a French Champagne house produced an English Sparkling Wine and that other French houses are now working in collaboration with winemakers in vineyards all over Sussex,


so there must be something. In addition there’s been numerous blind tastings ‘Champagne versus English Fizz’, with the English coming off best, so there are no doubts about quality, it’s just that we need more people snapping it up. There are the established names of Nyetimber, Camel Valley (Cornwall) and Ridgeview and other exciting new ventures, one being Bluebell Vineyard Estates, down in East Sussex. Their first vintage was in 2007, then followed by the 2008 and now the recent release of the 2009. They use the classic Champagne variety triumvirate of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier and also make a little sparkling with Seyval Blanc by employing the

méthod traditionelle. Iain McLean of Bluebell Vineyards Estates is keen to point out that ‘we are not trying to promote our wines like a Champagne but we are producing a unique Sparkling Wine from England’. The 2009 Hindleap Rosé is elegant and gentle, evoking a lush summer with wild strawberry and creamy red berries. The 2009 Hindleap Classic cuvée is floral, with citrus fruits and a tingle of sherbet on the finish and very refreshing. However my personal favourite is the 2009 Hindleap Blanc des Blancs, a 100% Chardonnay which has a good body with strong flavours of fresh citrus fruits and a gentle creamy texture that lingers on the palate. This wine has


great potential for the future so I have tucked a few cases away! So when deciding what to serve (and you’re keen to impress friends and family with the best of British) you will not go far wrong serving up the original Sparkling Fizz. The experts concur and The Bluebell Vineyards Estates have now added to their esteemed collection of national and international awards. Their Hindleap Brut Rosé and Blanc de Blancs both received Silver Medal Awards and the Classic Cuvée and Seyval Blanc got Bronze Medals at the International Wine & Spirits Challenge (IWC).

Prices as follows: 2009 Hindleap Rose Brut, Bluebell Vineyards Estates - £25.99 2009 Hindleap Classic Cuvée, Bluebell Vineyards Estates - £24.99 2008 Hindleap Blanc de Blancs, Bluebell Vineyards Estates - £27.50   There is a minimum order of 12 bottles  (6 bottles per case). Giles Smith Walker: Wine Consultant The Independent Vintner Order Giles’ summer selections from:

Bluebell Vineyards Estates

This science of the sparkles was discovered 6 years before Dom Pérignon and 30 years before the French claimed the addition of sugar was seen as the key to the secondary fermentation which produces the bubbles


En Entrepreneur


minute entrepreneur

Topsgrup founder, Rahul Nanda is acknowledged as the pioneer of the burgeoning security industry in India and has repeated this success in the UK and around the world. He talks to Peter Doherty about his personal philosophy and approach to business What was it that made you succeed in the UK? If you’re successful in Mumbai, which is full of obstacles and bureaucracy and a million other things, you can succeed anywhere. On reflection, it made the UK venture seem easy in comparison. I think you’re somebody who understands personal branding. You’re in the Security business and you’ve maintained a strong physical presence? You are your own brand. I started off at 21 years-old, £10 a month, no car, no handout from my father. I made it a point to look after myself mentally and physically. It’s noticeable that many entrepreneurs who’ve made it on their own have a strong sense of who they are and what they represent. You’re in the Sunday Times Rich List. Has this affected you in any way? Creating wealth is not as difficult as maintaining wealth. Yes I’m in the Sunday Times Rich List, but your objectives have to be clear. You do business in the same way you always do. Status will not affect my decisionmaking. I appreciate my position, but I still believe in the ‘art of saving money’, just because I have it, it doesn’t mean I throw it away - that may include things like flying ‘economy’. You’ve gone from the restaurant business to the Security business. Not an obvious synergy. What made you take the plunge into the Security field? I’m strong on Advertising and PR. I’m a creative thinker. I was always interested in Martial Arts. Security was in its nascent stage in India. It seemed a natural fit for someone like me.


You have a reputation for being pretty sharp. What has informed your approach to business? You may find this strange but I attribute this to the fact that I was a big video gamer. I was always pushing to go to the next level. I was always looking for new solutions; how to get round and think through the game. And of course there’s my education, training, friends, life experiences too! Starting a business is for me all about increasing profits, not me pulling big salary hikes. It’s all about small sacrifices along the way for a better future. There’s a fine line between paying wages, maintaining quality, growing and running operations. Our priorities are employees wages. We value our assets. It’s a people business. An entrepreneur cannot be selfish and self serving. Security is a high risk business, particularly looking after public figures. If anything goes wrong you’re in the media glare. How does that affect you? Yes it’s a high risk business. I couldn’t sleep during the final of the Indian Premier League with 100,000 people in the stadium. We were so conscious of the implications of something going wrong. Our employees are trained in behavioural management. How to spot suspicious activity, it’s all about planning and thinking ahead. We have a business in Mumbai called Topsline, like 999 here. We have 100 fire engines and 100 ambulances, now when 26/11 (terrorist strikes) happened in Mumbai, my men were there before the Police. In Mumbai, the Police will arrive in an hour - too late for an emergency

service. We reach a place, on average, in 6 minutes. We’ve actually saved 17,000 lives so far. I heard you were mentoring some of your employees kids in India. Do you think it’s important for business to give back in some way? Yes we do mentor employees’ kids. We’ve also adopted 24 children from employees who have died. We train, educate, sponsor and when they come of age, even employ them if they wish. We adopted 100 girls in a village in Rajasthan and do the same with a project called Parenting Program. We have a trust for educating all the children who were victims of the terrorist shootings in Mumbai. There were 100 children whose parents died in those attacks and we’ve done the same for them. It’s vitally important to give back. We’re always asked how much we give. I don’t want an OBE or public recognition. My aim is simple, to do business, look after my employees and be a good family man. You acquired 51% in the UK Security business, The Shield Guarding Company. How is that different than just doing a Joint Venture? I’ve made mistakes. I came here 12 years ago with a concept which was successful in India but didn’t work here. I had to close it in 6 months. We soon realised the only way to approach an international venture like this was to acquire companies. It worked for us. We acquired Shield and two more companies in India. It wasn’t a case of trial and error. We were the ‘father’. We owned the company. We took responsibility.


If you look at intrinsic cultures, Americans are very aggressive. Indians see things in shades of grey and are more flexible. British are more black and white. It’s ‘yes’ or ‘no’.

I’ve tried international JVs and it’s not worked out. JV partners have come to India with an agenda to impose their corporate philosophy without understanding the Indian market. The two companies in India we acquired worked like a dream because the understanding was already there through our shared culture. We just acquire and that’s it. With Shield in the UK there were generational differences at first. Now we have a dynamic team driven to build a bright future. When you acquire a foreign company, first and foremost, you acquire a culture and its people.

How different is the work culture here in the UK? If you look at intrinsic cultures, Americans are very aggressive. Indians see things in shades of grey and are more flexible. British are more black and white. It’s ‘yes’ or ‘no’. If you’re supplying a service you can’t say ‘it can’t be done’. I would say in response ‘make it happen’. That said, the younger generation are different and are more willing to embrace the ‘can-do’ attitude. What’s your five year plan? We have reached the £200 million enterprise valuation mark. My aim is to take our enterprise value to the

£1 billion mark and then rethink, re-strategise, re-energise to take the business to a different level. We are currently focusing our energies on India and the UK but within the next five years as the economies improve, we will start re-looking at the Americas and other parts of Asia for entry. In the future, I am also interested in investing in start-ups with great ideas, whether it’s an entertainment company or social networking platform. Alas…I’m still replying to emails at 2am and 4am in the morning, and right now I have 93,000 employees to worry about!


E Events

International Life Wealth Network & The Gold & Silver Club present

Dante in London With a highly select group of invitees in attendance renowned Swiss Artist, Dante Rubli unveiled two magnificent 1:4 gold sculptures from his Iconic Car series.


ante Rubli added to his international following by wowing an assembled audience with his stunning interpretations of the Aston Martin DB5 and Mercedes Benz 300SL at an exclusive evening hosted at a sublime Nash terrace property overlooking London’s Regent’s Park. The venue, 10 Cornwall Terrace is an exquisite private residence with beautifully appointed interiors and layout - the perfect backdrop for Dante’s flamboyant creations.

above: Dante’s gold interpretation of the Mercedes 300SL and right hand page (top): Dante’s Aston Martin DB5


Peter Doherty and Yves de Contades from International Life Wealth Network and Nik Kalsi from The Gold & Silver Club hosted an evening which captivated a wealthy cosmopolitan audience of collectors and investors. Dante’s International Sales Director, John Franklin was compelled to give three different presentations, such was the demand for the Dante story. John described the artist’s growing international following as, ‘a global assortment of collectors, from wealthy individuals, investors and hedge funds


Dante Rubli added to his international following by wowing an assembled audience with his stunning interpretations of the Aston Martin DB5 and Mercedes Benz 300SL to Royal Households’. He also indicated that there’s plans afoot for the première of Dante’s latest addition to his iconic car series later in the year at an exclusive location. Check for further details. With special thanks to Sponsors: Property: 10 Cornwall Terrace, London NW1 Enquiries: Champagne:Vranken Pommery Chocolatier: Jeff de Bruges


GET A LOAN FROM WHAT YOU ALREADY OWN. Avoid the hassles of a bank loan. At borro, we offer fast approval on loans against your assets including fine art, antiques, watches, jewellery, prestige and classic cars with no credit checks. We also offer a referral programme. Visit borro: Chancery house, 53-64 Chancery Lane, London, WC2A 1QU 9am to 7pm – Monday to Friday No appointment necessary Call: 0800 242 5156 - Visit our website:


top: Swiss Artist Dante relaxes after the event middle: The venue: stunning Nash architecture of Regent’s Park bottom: International Life’s Managing Directors, Peter Doherty, right and Yves de Contades, left with Artist Dante.



TALK Photography: Yves de contades Yacht: Christina O








Shot 1: Tony - Shirt and Jacket: Billionaire Couture. Pocket Square: Boss Sunglasses: Tom Ford Natalie - Pink dress: Nina Naustdal Necklace: Veritas Shoes: Charkviani Bag: Aigner Shot 2: Natalie - Leather dress w/tassles: Fyodor Golan Gold clutch: Kzeniya Shot 3: Tony - Green blazer: Brooks Brothers. Pocket square: Boss Stripy sweater: Peter Werth Watch: Quinting Manufacture D’Horlogerie Sunglasses (just seen): Ksubi Shot 4: Tony - Cream knitted sweater: Muriee. Stripey jacket: Paul Costelloe Burgundy trousers: Orschel Read Brown loafers: Gant Natalie - Dress: Winter Kate Necklace: Arianna Cerrito Sunglasses: Chanel. Shoes: Charkviani Shot 5: Tony - Grey double breasted suit: Paul Costelloe White shirt: Boss Pocket square: Boss Belt: Paul Smith Purple loafers: Oliver Sweeney Natalie - Dress: Agatha Hambi Necklaces x 2: Hugo Boss Clutch bag: Kzeniya Shoes: Chloe Shot 6: Natalie - Pink dress: Herve Leger. Green shoes: Ash Sunglasses: House of Harlow Diamond necklace: Bentley and Skinner Turquoise necklace: Veritas Tony - Suit: Pal Zileri Shirt: Hugo Boss. Belt: Boss Shoes: Herring. Cufflinks: Veritas Shot 7: Tony - White blazer: Brooks Brothers. Shirt: Private White VC Trousers: Baartman and Seigel Shoes: Oliver Sweeney Watch: Quinting Manufacture D’Horlogerie Natalie - Skirt & matching top: Arianna Cerrito Necklace: Arianna Cerrito Shoes: Tamaris Hat: Philip Wright Ring: Bentley and Skinner Watch: Folli Follie Shot 8: Natalie - Hat: Philip Wright Choker: Bentley and Skinner Dress: Felice

Yacht Shoot: International Life Summer 2012 Title: If only Yachts could talk Photographer: Yves De Contades Stylist: Sara Darling Make up and Hair: Jennie Lam using Mac Nails: Jutheanne Cruz using Opi Photography Assistant: Adam Hodgson


Stylist Assistant: Emily Smeaton Models: Tony Helskens @ MandP Models Natalie Maury @ Lenis International Life would like to thank David Jeanjean at The Christina O. Charter per day is £65,000. Charter enquiries: stocks: Quinting Manufacture D’Horlogerie Arriano Cerrito Veritas jewellery Philip Wright Hats For all other stockists please visit:

As unique as you The iconic Persia handbag in a Siamese horn back crocodile with burl walnut detailing and gold plated hardware. Each purchase comes with personalised detailing crafted by the designer himself, making it a truly intimate gift. Part of the Quentin Mackay Couture Editions service



Gary Hersham, Partner at Beauchamp Estates, tells us why London is the world’s premier international city and the first choice for the global wealthy, who seek to call it ‘home’.

Capital of the

right: Rutland Gardens A hidden gem in the heart of Knightsbridge located within its own private road with a gate house staffed 24 hours, this newly constructed four bedroom house is set behind a traditional period façade whilst boasting state of the art technology inside. £14,950,000



The demand for prime and superprime residential property here in the capital remains unabated with only the shortage of stock in the London market continuing to be a problem.


he first quarter of 2012 has continued to go from strength to strength in terms of both central London sales and the number of new applicants registering. The demand for prime and superprime residential property here in the capital remains unabated with only the shortage of stock in the London market continuing to be a problem. At this time of year in particular, purchasers tend to want a garden, or use of a garden square, terrace , or arguably even better a direct view and access to a park. One of the most charming of the London parks is Regents’ Park with its many facilities such as an open air theatre, lake and tennis courts represents one of the finest Royal parks in London. Interest in the finest London properties is coming from the four corners of the globe but in particular the ex-USSR countries, India, Italy, the Middle-East, the Far-East, as well as France. We feel that there will be even more interest from Italian purchasers who are probably the biggest savers in Europe - and the French now Monsieur Hollande has succeeded in his bid for the Presidency. China is emerging as a contender in the London market and will shortly be followed, no doubt, by the wealthy from Brazil as that country continues to expands its own economic profile. There is competition for the finest houses and flats in the very best locations from the international market. Interest tends to be localised with those from the ex-USSR and the Middle East preferring Belgravia, Knightsbridge, Mayfair, and Regent’s Park. The home market is also buoyant and to a large extent despite >>



>> the increase in stamp duty they have not been deterred. It is no surprise to us that demand for the top end of the London market continues to flourish. Not only does this key financial centre have a particularly convenient time zone, but we have retained our currency and therefore have a degree of economic autonomy. For now the mavericks of Europe are benefiting. Â The convenience of London in


relation to other international cities, the cultural aspects and the enormous improvements in the service industry - in particular hotels, restaurants and prime shopping coupled with the potential capital growth in the market is continuing to lure prime purchasers from around the world. Despite Paris and New York regaining some momentum these markets tend not to be fuelled by the international purchaser in the same way as London. According

to Citi Private Banks The Wealth Report, property accounts for 35% of HNW investment portfolios second to investing in their own businesses. Â London is almost unilaterally considered both in terms of a business environment and in terms of a place to live, as the best city in the world. This is because of its cosmopolitan nature, its innate safety and the fact that it is the most important commercial centre worldwide. All nationalities feel


comfortable here and are at ease with whoever their ‘neighbours’ might be. In other words it is a city willing to welcome all and sundry irrespective of creed or culture. In conclusion, signs in the first quarter of 2012 have been very positive with a good flow of high net worth applicants registering and we fully expect that trend to continue throughout the summer and beyond with both international money and

some home market money being invested in the prime central London market. These properties will be used as homes, London bases and indeed safe haven investments in a somewhat turbulent world. We have no crystal ball to predict the future but our experience, intuition and sales to date are indicating that 2012 is set to be a wonderful year for the prime central London market.

The Buckingham Suite, 26 Belgrave Square. An elegant four bedroom ground and garden apartment situated in this most sought after Belgravia address. Guide Price: £12,950,000


international property


Dubrovnik International Life finds the beauty and serenity of Dubrovnik beguiling and examines the potential for property investment and the luxury of a holiday home in the bargain

you can enjoy a wonderful lifestyle here and it has something one is born with, good looks. It’s beautiful Dubrovnik Sun Gardens One bedroom residence prices range from ¤170,000 for a ground floor residence with a garden view up to ¤335,000 for a larger one bedroom residence with premium panoramic views of the Adriatic. Two bedroom residences range from ¤310,000 for a garden

view residence up to ¤555,000 for larger two bedroom residences with premium panoramic sea views.

buyers of residences at Dubrovnik Sun Gardens. T +385 (0) 20 361 650

Dubrovnik Sun Gardens is pleased to announce a new mortgage offering available on the purchase of all residences at the 5 star resort. Erste Bank is offering up to 80% LTV and a fixed interest rate of 3.3% for the first five years of the 15 year term. The terms are exclusive to

Dubrovnik Sun Gardens was recently awarded the OPP Overseas Property Award of excellence as Best Developer Southern Europe 2011. Old Town Tour guide:

international property


ecently a couple of investors pulled me to one side and confessed a dirty secret. With more than a little anguish they regaled me with stories of how they compromised their International Property portfolios by opting to include ‘exciting new ski destinations in Bulgaria’ some years back. Bulgaria was a gamble and the obvious clues were hastily overlooked; infrastructure, sustainability, economic stability, service levels and the track record of the guys running the show. So with these forlorn tales lingering in the memory I took time out to visit Dubrovnik, described as the pearl of Croatia’s Dalmation Coast. Croatia itself is beyond the growing pains experienced by most of Eastern Europe. In fact the former Yugoslavia was communist-lite and in that dark era, the Croatians had more in common with Italian culture than Russian, much to the dismay of Moscow. Dubrovnik in particular, enjoyed a long trading relationship with the Venetians and the stunning Old Town is testament to its

strategic importance, rich history and political alliances. No, it doesn’t possess the service levels of the Swiss or the organisation of the Germans quite yet, but you can enjoy a wonderful lifestyle here and it has something one is born with, good looks. It’s beautiful. My primary objective was to evaluate Dubrovnik Sun Gardens, a 5 star resort, uniquely located on the coastline near the village of Orasac and within a short journey of the charming UNESCO city of Old Town Dubrovnik. The resort is one of the very few in Croatia which offers both hotel facilities as well as an opportunity for residence ownership. On inspection it’s hard not to be impressed. Expectations up, I went in search of my western European luxuries, 5 star accommodation, great food, service, spa, leisure… you know the list. It’s rare to find a place that gives you everything you desire, but Dubrovnik Sun Gardens breaks a leg trying. For a start there’s spectacular views from every vantage point. The Mediterranean style resort village has generously proportioned, contemporary apartments and beautifully realised landscaping and outside space with an extensive beachfront and a wide range of watersport activities. It has one of the best spas (OCCO Spa & Wellness Centre) in the Adriatic. My restored spine will testify to that. You’ll find thirteen bars and restaurants carefully positioned throughout the resort. The food, a selection of local and international cuisine hits the mark. There are three freshwater pools and an extensive sports club that has a gym, squash court, outdoor tennis courts and five-a-side football pitch. And if you

have to attend to business, pop into the 201 room contemporary Radisson Blu hotel where you’ll find conference and business spaces in abundance. If I have one gripe there is no sandy beach, but a boat arrives every half hour to ferry residents to a nearby private beach on Elafiti Islands in minutes. There are also plans for further development to extend the resort along the coastline, that said, the focus is on selling its 207 residences. When I’ve described this to investors they’ve chastised me for not telling them earlier, but it’s not your conventional portfolio addition. First of all, it’s there to be enjoyed and potential investors should look at this as a beautiful holiday home in a 5 star resort for 2-4 weeks a year and pocket around 4%* rental return for the other 48 weeks. And did I mention it’s a freehold purchase? Residence owners are at liberty to sign a management agreement which offers the chance for the resort operator to rent the apartment to their clients. It’s an ideal on-the-ground managed solution if you have no time to take care of practical matters, from bureacracy, to cleaning, maintenance and gardening and future renovations etc, added to that it’s the only resort of this calibre and quality around the entire coast of Dalmatia. Reassuringly, the resort operator is British company iO Adria Limited. They run a very hands on operation and Commercial Director Julian Houchin maintains a very visible on-site presence and talks enthusiastically of their long term commitment to the resort. If you’re considering extending your portfolio and want something solid and established that you can enjoy and will give you returns, this should be on your list. Importantly, try before you buy and arrange a visit with the assistance of the sales team and sample the Dubrovnik experience first-hand.


Toughing it in

at the Luxury Picosa Ranch



International Life flew over to San Antonio to see why it attracts 26 million visitors a year, Yeehaa! San Antonio is a vibrant modern city that fuses the old West, Mexico and modern American hospitality.

right: Expert Ranch hand Felipe at Picosa


orget everything you think you know, this is one modern, art strewn, historically rich, musical, foodfest of a city. I started my trip off with a stay at the luxury Picosa Ranch, just half an hours drive from San Antonio. The welcome there is real Southern hospitality at its best, warm and fun. The ranch used to be owned by “Big John” Connally, governor of Texas and best friend of JFK and his wife Jacqui. In fact they were in the front of the car when JFK was


shot and John took the first bullet in the shoulder. Visitors to the ranch included President and Mrs. Nixon, President Johnson, Nelson and Happy Rockefeller, President Ford, Princess Margaret, Princess Alexandra and more, Airforce One even used the private airstrip. The ranch was purchased by the Kowalski’s in the mid 1990’s and is managed by Connally’s grandson Bubbah Ammann, who epitomises charm, efficiency and takes immense pride in making sure his guests have the best possible time.


Chef David there makes the best steak I have ever had, bar none. It was the largest, softest and most succulent T-bone that has ever melted on my tongue. Start the morning with a dip in the smoking pool with the hot steam flowing out over the meadows behind the house and admire the beautiful sunrise over the infinite horizon. Then take advantage of the sumptuous breakfast on offer. On day one I took a Solaris out on an exotic Safari expertly guided by Bubbah. The Picosa Ranch covers 2500 acres, has 300 sunny days a year and is home to an extraordinary range of wildlife. There are 250 different exotic animals such as Texas cattle, Zebras, Oryx, Addax, Waterbuck and more. They even have their own rodeo compound with beautiful horses which I rode in the afternoon, followed by fly cast fishing in the lake and then shooting skeet as the sun went down. The next morning we were off for a little light training on a Smith and Wesson M&P 15-22, which is a light semi automatic rifle with an impressive firing rate and accurate enough to keep knocking those Prairie Dogs for six.

The evening was spent at Stephan Pyles’ Sustenio restaurant at the new Éilan Hotel Resort in the Texas Hill Country serving modern Southwestern cuisine. The executive chef David Gilbert took me through a personal tasting that was out of this world, mixing Peruvian Ceviches with Heston Blumenthal style desserts. This is world class food from two chefs who combine passion and technique to create their own original mouth watering dishes. The next morning I switched to to the Hotel Contessa on the Riverwalk in downtown San Antonio which has a wonderful rooftop pool with a great view of San Antonio and a large comfortable bar restaurant overlooking the Riverwalk, one of San Antonio’s most famous beauty spots. The Riverwalk is a lovely canal that snakes through Downtown with two levels of bars, restaurants and shops and is very lively in the evening, keep an eye out for the Arneson River Theatre which holds some spectacular outdoor entertainment. I joined up with a friend from San Antonio and we walked along the river to a bar that does perfect Margaritas, the speciality of the region, and soaked

up the atmosphere with couples, families and barges meandering up and down. After a brisk walk to get over the drinks I tried a massage at the 4 star Mokara Spa, just a short amble from the Contessa. Brandy immediately spotted the knotted muscles from my early onset of middle age neurosis jogging and administered a wonderful relaxing and deep tissue sports massage that galvanised me into further visits of the shops and sites. If you want an authentic cowboy hat go to Paris Hatters (inaptly named) millinery emporium on Broadway Street. They have made bespoke cowboy hats for some of the most famous cowboys ever. My personal favourite being the Outlaw Josey Wales Stetson. For high end luxury cowboy boots, if that is not a contradiction in terms, try Lucchese (pronounced Lou Casey). Both list many celebrity clients. You cannot miss the Alamo, as it is surprisingly located right in the centre of town; one of the 5 old Catholic missions established by the Spanish and the site of the heroic last stand of Jim Bowie in the Battle of the Alamo in 1836, defending the outpost against the much larger >>



>> Mexican army led by Santa Anna. The Menger Bar where Teddy Roosevelt recruited his Rough Riders is just opposite and worth a quick drink for the history. San Antonio is holding up well against the global recession and there are many developments springing up which draw very large funding. Much of this is due to its strong policy of land development which attracts large companies and this means that business is booming. San Antonio is home to five Fortune 500 companies and also enjoys large investment from wealthy Mexican families who have settled there.


Do visit the Mi Tierra Cafe y Panaderia for breakfast before shopping in the Market Square, the largest Mexican market in the States, it is the home and essence of Mariachi kitsch. Another little gem known to the locals is Gini Garcia’s glass blowing studio where you can sit and watch the relaxed artists whilst they listen to Mariachi music and blow glass with amazing skill. More widely known is the celebrated McNay on North New Braunfels, the first modern art museum in Texas showing 19th through to 21st century European and American paintings, sculptures, and photographs.

Lastly, San Antonio has a thriving live music scene, and I would recommend the atmospheric Olmos Pharmacy, a real American pharmacy turned jazz bar with fantastic live music and open mic. Ask Jed to make you a Guinness milkshake, it tastes a lot better than it sounds. Howling at the Moon on the Riverwalk has musicians duke it out with great skill on two Grand Pianos, guitars and drums. It’s like a musical version of lap dancing, the musicians take music request slips accompanied by cash whilst keeping up a running banter with the audience.


We Recommend Picosa Ranch, 30 minutes south of San Antonio; (830) 393-9262; To get more details about San Antonio and it’s events and festivals: Sustenio Restaurant: opposite page, top left: Pool area at Picosa Ranch opposite page, far left: Bubbah at Picosa Ranch

Contessa Hotel:

opposite page, middle: Tierra San Antonio

opposite page, right: Deer roam at Picosa Ranch

top: Downtown. San Antonio

above left: Picoas Ranch. Main House above: River Walk. San Antonio left: Scene of one of the historic Mexican battles, The Alamo



2011 Extreme Sailing Series ™

The Formula One

of Sailing International Life’s Yves de Contades went down to Cowes to sail in the 2011 Extreme Sailing Series™ with Cowes’ own Olympian, Leigh McMillan, skipper of The Wave Muscat and his crew: Kyle Langford, Nick Hutton and Khamis Al Anbouri.

T below: Oman Sail Extreme Catarmaran


he Extreme 40’s catamarans were designed by Olympian sailor Yves Laday as large super fast boats that can reach and surpass speeds of 40 Mph in winds of 30 Mph. All the boats in the competition are exactly the same which means that the race is won on sailing skills alone, if only that were true for some other racing competitions. The day before I arrived, one boat, the Aberdeen Asset Management,

capsized and required support boats to right it. Near misses, capsizing and full on crashes at high speed are fairly common fare as the boats compete in a very small area in front of the stadium for maximum viewing pleasure and there are numerous pleasure boats crisscrossing the water during the race. It’s like having a Sunday parade of small family cars pootling about the circuit track during a Formula One event, amazing there are not more pile ups. >>


They are however incredible polite when they bark orders which is so quintessentially English “would you mind moving over there, very quickly, sorry for shouting�



>> There are over 40 races each lasting approximately 15 minutes up and down wind and the boats spins around various marker buoys at high speed changing tack in mere seconds. Did I mention that much of this takes place within yards of the shore so that the boats are turning just before the rocks. This is exciting adrenalin packed fun. I join Leigh for the 3rd race on board the Wave Muscat, he came third in the last one but is still in the running if he does well in the next two as he was ahead yesterday by 8 points. The points

are based on the number of boats, 12 boats so first place gets 12 points, second gets 11 and so on. I am the 5th man, which means you get to join these incredible athletes and share first hand in the wave fuelled excitement. A friendly warning, do be prepared to be shouted at as the wind makes communication difficult and time is of the essence when a poor turn could result in the hulls sinking into the water and a great deal of speed lost. They are however incredible polite when they bark orders which is so quintessentially

English “would you mind moving over there, very quickly, sorry for shouting�, as you spring into action bouncing over the net a few feet from the water, spurred on by the fear of slowing them down. The race is co sponsored by Volvo UK, Aberdeen Asset Management and Oman Air and fields numerous Olympians, AC campaigns, World circumnavigators and World Championship winners. This is like being allowed to play at Wimbledon against Roger Federer or play in the England Football team during the finals,


if we ever reached them. The crew move about the trampoline like lightning and every nerve is singing as you concentrate on the wind, the other boats inches away, the angle of the craft as it rises up 45 degrees on one hull and the all important next turn coming up. Leigh and his crew hit each turn perfectly, catching the wind as they gibe and maintaining the speed on each turn of the course. We are nose to nose with Aberdeen Asset Management and they just pip us at the post. Second place is

still 11 points and Leigh does well in the next two races and wins the overall first place. Oman Air are jubilant as they are passionate sailors (they had two crews in the event, Oman Air and The Wave Muscat) and have won this leg of the series with one of their own (Khamis Al Anbouri) on crew with Leigh who starting his sailing career in Cowes, so a home and away win. For more information and a chance to sail in this unique race go here:

The Extreme Sailing Series™ is in Cardiff from the 30th August to the 2nd September 2012 The Extreme Sailing Series™ races in The Muscat (Oman), Qingdao (China), Istanbul (Turkey), Porto (Portugal), Cardiff (UK), Trapani (Italy), Nice (France), and, finally, Brazil, starting in February until December 2012. Follow Extreme Sailing Series™ on extremesailingseries Facebook: extremesailingseries YouTube:



Turkish Delights

Magical mini-breaks & Royal Spa relaxation

below: 360 Istanbul, Suadaclub

Joanna Malek describes her magical Istanbul mini-break as unadulterated luxury only to find the subsequent sojourn to Bodrum, a truly heavenly experience.


“It’s like a mini-Agrabbah” I breathed in, looking out of the tall bay windows of our penthouse suite. Coloured blocks of pale yellows, oranges, pinks and reds piled up above one another, in a city that seemed so built up, yet so uncrowded. We’d walked down a questionably winding cobbled road that seemed to descend away from the better looking streets we’d spotted in the Taksim area. The recently opened Rixos Taksim, hexagonally roofed, stood nestled at the bottom of the road, and promised to offer the same private, seamless, luxury stay as its well-known sister hotel in the nearby Pera area.


We hadn’t been told to prepare ourselves for the most privileged stay imaginable in Turkey - the Rixos Taksim gives you a fresh take on simple, unadulterated, elegance and a new lease on the term ‘city break.’ Our four day bubble of relaxed basking in comfort, and soaking up culture, was definitely ‘a break’. The Layali restaurant gives you the most outstanding flavours of Lebanese cuisine, the SPA centre offers treatments which combine the tailored massages, and body care rituals of the western and eastern cultures which Istanbul’s character combines so seamlessly. The

indoor pool, more adequately sized to represent a river, the state of the art fitness centre with inbuilt speech systems, that make it impossible to resent the treadmill, 24/7 concierge services and a stunning roof-top view (which took us a while to find, sneaking through tens of emergency doors) make the hotel an abyss of understated luxury. The personal relation each member of the hotel management adopts with each guest actually made me wonder if we were the only guests, despite the fact that the hotel enjoyed full occupancy during our stay.


Sight-Seeing Topkapi Palace: Home and Harem of the Sultans. The Blue Mosque: Not as overtly “Blue” as you’d expect - Turkey, and Islam’s most beautiful, intricate Mosque is a must visit, for silenced stupor at the ornateness of this early 17th Century hub of worship. The Aya Sofia: The Hagia Sofia repivoted Western Architecture. It was built in 537 AD by Emperor Justinian who succeeded in his intent to make it the greatest church in history. However its status as the world’s greatest piece of architecture attracted invasion by Mehmet the Conqueror and after almost 1000 years as a Church it was proclaimed a Mosque. 400 years later it was finally recognised as a worldhistorical monument and proclaimed a museum and heritage point by Ataturk. It’s simply awe-inspiring and beautiful. above and below left: 360 Restaurant, lounge and club, Istanbul

The Basillica Cistern: Also known as the “Sunken Palace” and made famous by the Bond movie From Russia with Love where 007 rows through a forest of marble columns. That adrenaline packed scene was shot in this underground cistern built by Justinian as a water store for the Great Palace in 532 AD. The Prince’s Islands: If you like tranquillity and culture try the charming 9 islands scattered about 20 kms Southeast of the city in the Sea of Marmara which make for a beautiful scenic escape. The Buyukada Island is a stunning setting as you approach by ferry, lined with sumptuous gingerbread villas that invite you to climb the slopes and hills leading up to the famous bulbous twin cupolas of the Splendid Otel. The view is breath-taking. Getting in with the Locals: Women, be prepared to fall subject to cheesy charm such as “excuse me you dropped something.” Don’t stop and look for your lost object as your admirer will shortly let you know - its “my heart”.>>



>> Regardless of your attractions however, do not be surprised if stopping and speaking to a local in a Spice Souk or a silversmith in the Grand Bazaar in Sultanahmet, earns you an invitation to dine with their family that evening. Walking the streets of the Sultanahmet area, friendly chats with the cab drivers or passing pedestrians, imbues one with a certain warmth derived from the charm of Istanbul. The Egyptian Spice Market had us exploring the intricate smells, tastes and textures of the 101 spices to be found in this alluring setting. Fleeing the flirtations of the Spice Marketeers had us stumble upon Istanbul’s greatest invisible find, The Grand Bazaar. And grand it was. Often I roll my eyes at the Sex in the City type narrative that occurs in my head. Rarely does this narrative ever actually manifest and occur in real life. Our visit to the Grand Bazaar was one of those occasions. The boys were certain it was their moral obligation to accompany and protect us from the stalls owners - and - worst of all, ourselves, and our credit limits. They gave up after an hour of trailing, and told us they’d meet us back at the hotel. Another hour and one of the girls buckled and called it a wrap for the day. Myself and my colleague Roshan, were still going strong. Two further hours later, climbing slopes of cobbled roads, past winding, packed paths of shop after shop, there we were: stilettos slipping between cobbles, as we dragged the suitcases we’d bought in the Bazaar behind us. It was a truly Carrie Bradshaw moment, but why don’t they show the reality of the post purchase uphill struggle in the movies?

Truly the most relaxing, deepfocused, unearthly massages you will experience, take place at the Rixos Royal Spa

Hot Spots for a spectacular City view

Reina Club. Istanbul’s most glamourous, super-flash club, as you dance your evening away on the banks of the Bosphorus. Yes, technically, you can avoid traffic, by arriving at the club by boat! Spanning two large floors which stretch out on the Bosphorus, the club is Istanbul’s most beamed and a must-visit for one, if not several of your nights. Visit Lucca Club to expand your horizon further across the Bosphorus, as well as up Istanbul’s social ladder. A restaurant by day, club by night and heart of Bebek’s bar and club scene at all times, follow the yellow brick road of Porsches to find this magnet for Istanbul’s high society.

360 Restaurant, Lounge and Club. Cutting edge, diversified live entertainment, spectacular 360° views, an out stretched terrace overlooking Istanbul and a highly creative menu of culinary delights. The award-winning penthouse turns into Club360 on weekends, with international DJs, impressive acrobats and live dancers. Its sister venue: 360 Istanbul East recently opened on the Asian side of the city, with matching jaw-dropping views, adding the swanky twist of a roof-top pool amongst outdoor terraces. Contact: for premium


offer reservations exclusively for International Life readers. Sunset Bar and Grill. Find Sunset in the impressive Ulus neighbourhood, set upon a hilltop with yet even further breathtaking views of the city. Aweinspiring scenery, exquisite service, possibly the most extensive international wine list, cigar selections, and the finest cuisine - a mélange of Japanese and culturally-influenced Turkish menus live music, made Sunset, our top pick in the city. Contact: Caner Tekin at info@, quoting International Life, for a superb table booking.

Bodrum I felt so relaxed. Why then, were we boarding a 6am flight to the ‘relax and unwind’ leg of our trip to Bodrum? Istanbul had meant to resemble the mad rush that most city-breaks do and impressing over and beyond, left a tall order for Bodrum to out-do its more high profile sister city. Bodrum, taking a cut of the Black Sea, might make you weary if you’re used to the beaches of the Mediterranean. Staying at the Rixos however, ensures a healthy slice of your own private beach, whichever way you turn. Almost it’s own island, the resort manages to neighbour zones of privacy and tranquility, with those of activity and entertainment, within the effort of a short stroll without one disturbing the flow of another. Now, may I recommend a trip to heaven, (minus the inconvenient aspect of the end of life), to visit the Royal Spa at The Rixos. A Turkish hammam, gently bathes, buffs, exfoliates and renews you so much so - you’ll be offering those around you their reflection on your polished, perfect skin. I had thought perhaps that Turkey would not have mixed male and female hammams. This was clarified in a few short frames of events. The masseur assigned to my hammam and massage, had kept


bizarrely saying ‘your friend, your friend.’ I nodded with wide smiles: ‘yes, yes, my friends have had one too. I’m very sure they liked it very much.’ He smiled patiently knowing that it was I who didn’t understand him, not viceversa. Leading me through the Grand Doors of the hammam, he opened them to reveal my male colleague lying down on the tall marble slabs, with an empty space (presumably, that which was to be mine), adjacent to him. My squeals of urgency, to prevent the awkward hammam-story mockery which would follow us back to the workplace and his head jerking up in alarm from his place on the marble slab as he heard my squeals, signalled to the masseur that I now understood: the hammams in Turkey are definitely communal. Truly the most relaxing, deepfocused, unearthly massages you will experience, take place at the Rixos Royal Spa. Couple this with

accommodation from ‘standard rooms’, which more accurately resemble luxury suites, to villas with your very own private pools to cool off in. There’s also panoramic views of the Rixos Island and Aegean Sea and discreetly tucked away in each villa’s garden, your living area and in-room sauna! (Yes, in-room), you simply won’t want to leave your villa as you succumb to this gorgeous hideaway. The Rixos Island extends a lavish choice of restaurants, Saturday Night Dinner Galas on the Private Pavilion which stretches out in a huge white marble setting onto the seashore, nightclubs, live entertainment, an amphitheatre and within the main hall, a nightly cinema screening. To explore the surrounding areas and nightlife of Bodrum outside of the resort and Bodrum’s port and marina - you will need to be brave to cast off the anchor that ties you to this luxurious, alluring and wonderful resort.

For unflawed, attentive, and completely seamless guest-relations from start to end of your stay be sure to contact: • Selen Partal at the Rixos Bodrum • Bora Tunali at the Rixos Taksim Istanbul contact details below Both will be happy to offer you the luxury level of service and accommodation that we experienced so fully throughout our stays. International Life readers will receive special rates and complimentary room upgrades, when quoting: International Life Magazine. For more information and exclusive offers for International Life readers, contact: 360 Restaurant, Lounge and Club Contact: for premium offer reservations exclusively for International Life readers. Sunset Bar and Grill Contact: Caner Tekin at info@, quoting International Life, for a superb table booking.

opposite page and this picture: The Rixos, pool and relaxation area with panoramic views of the Rixos Island and the Aegean Sea



Say Hola

to Luxury!

Spain’s infamous Costa del Sol is known for its sunny days, fabulous beaches and great tourist arena, but it has never been known as luxurious… until now. Levanah Reyes-Wainwright invites us to discover the plush side of Spain


pain’s Costa del Sol is a home away from home for me. Until recently many family holidays were spent seeing beautiful landscapes all the way from Malaga down to my father’s home, Gibraltar. I grew up tasting the delights of Spanish food and experiencing the warmth of the people, along with discovering the rich cultural heritage. Now I’m discovering the luxurious side. The place to stay: Finca Cortesin is a spectacular independent hotel, world championship golf course and out-ofthis-world spa destination set in the rolling hills of southern Spain between Marbella and Sotogrande (Junior Suites

from €430 per night, fincacortesin. com). The attention to detail such as the 18th century floor tiles from a monastery, and the colourful wall mosaics allow the hotel to seamlessly combine the modern and traditional effortlessly. Antique doors all salvaged from European castles open into each of the individually designed 67 rooms. Lofty celings, white walls and endless flower lined courtyards make the hotel very spacious and bright. Al fresco terrace dining next to 1000 year old olive trees and the two emerald lagoon like outdoor pools mean there are countless opportunities for secluded relaxation. The signature restaurant

cation style only



With seven treatment rooms, sauna, Turkish bath, marine salt water indoor pool and boasting the only snow cave in Spain, Finca’s Spa is the epitome of indulgent relaxing. If you are looking for the Holy Grail of Full Body Massages then this is the place to find it

Schilo provides a show-stopping fusion of Arabic-Japanese cuisine. Head chef Schilo Van Coevorden is definitely cooking at Michelin star levels with my exquisite highlights including the lobster cappuccino, daikon salad with ginger dressing and the chocolate olive tree for dessert. A long lazy breakfast should be savoured at the other restaurant El Jardin, because of the wonderful truffle and Manchego omelette and muesli with yogurt foam. Both restaurants deliver a luxurious but unpretentious dining experience. With seven treatment rooms, sauna, Turkish bath, marine salt water indoor pool and boasting the only snow cave in Spain, Finca’s Spa is the epitome of indulgent relaxing. If you are looking for the Holy Grail of full body massages then this is the place to find it. Whilst staying here I’ve never

been more relaxed in my entire life. The hospitality and service I received was impeccable. Forget everywhere else you’ve been before, Finca will spoil you for life. Things to do: If you are looking for something to do on a rainy day, visit the “Escuela De Arte Ecuestre Costa Del Sol” one of the biggest and renowned equestrian centres in Spain, offering some of the finest equestrian facilities in Europe. Built in perfect harmony with the environment, the Escuela Equestrian Centre (escuela-ecuestre. com) is a British Horse Society (BHS) approved riding establishment as well as officially recognised by the Andalusian Federation of Horse Riding (FAH) and awarded with the highest ranking, 4 stirrups. Having learnt to ride when I was younger I was nervous about being

able to do it again, but I needn’t have worried. The horse riding instructors here are second to none, with quality and true instructions being the ethos behind the teaching. If food and culture are more your thing, then embark upon the “Gardens & Gastronomy” tour of Andalucía near Malaga. The Olive Grove (+44 (0) 1637 881942, presents this exciting new cultural and culinary package which pairs tours of some of Andalucía’s oldest, most impressive and important gardens with gastronomic explorations to highlight the culinary influences of Andalucía’s three historic cultures. The knowledgeable hosts will also present recommendations for restaurants in each of the garden tour cities, with tips on speciality dishes representing the city and their origins. >>


>> Where to Eat: When I want to know the best places to eat on the Costa I call upon - the fastest growing holiday rental specialist in Spain with over 6,100 properties. They recommended Valparaiso’s ( due to its fresh seafood and meat such as veal and ostrich in pink pepper sauce. Unusually for a Spanish restaurant they have a good range of vegetarian options including their ‘Fantasy Salad’ consisting of Chicory, Palm Hearts, Avocado, Nuts and Apples served with Roquefort Dressing. If you are looking to dine Michelin star style then you need to visit Skina ( They will provide you with an evening full of flavor by melding together modern Mediterranean cuisine with traditional Andalusian influences. The menu includes delicious dishes such as Spinach rice with Malaga white prawns and the Heston worthy Orange cream with carrot ice cream for dessert. right: Riding School at “Escuela De Arte Ecuestre Costa Del Sol” one of the biggest and renowned equestrian centres in Spain middle: Andalusian influences at Skina Restaurant top: Finca jamon previous page: poolside at the spectacular Finca Cortesin hotel



Quinting 2012: Mystery Booster! W

hat if 2012 was actually the start of a new world, where dreams come true? The luxury brand Quinting, the first and only watch manufacturer in the world to create 100% transparent watches, has always believed in realising the historical dream of the invisible watch. After many years of financial and creative investment they have realised their dream. Since 2000,

the release date of its first mysterious chronographs, Quinting’s ingenuity has become well established. Overcoming multiple challenges, each one crazier than the last. Today, Quinting Manufacture presents astonishing new collections produced by an all new team of designers and creatives. Following the Art Collection and its famous Moonlight collection (360 unique pieces showing the real moon phases in space for the first time), Quinting exclusively presents three new collections for 2012. The new Gold Art Collection which differentiates itself by replacing enamel with gold motifs.

above: Q2STDC26M14 Steel case, polished round bezel with 120 diamonds (0,588 cts), white dial. Quinting 2 movement - 3 hands. Leather strap. middle top: Q2STRP25M3 Steel case, polished round bezel. Quinting 2 movement - 3 hands. Black dial, Arabic figures. Leather strap. bottom: Q2STRP24M8 Steel case, polished round bezel. Quinting 2 movement - 3 hands. Light Blue dial, Arabic figures. Leather strap. far right top: Q5BSL55M1 5 movement - 43mm Hour & Minute Hands. 7 Sapphire Discs with anti-reflective coating. Black PVD Coated Case with Leather Strap. Black dial, bezel and discs with diamonds 1.437 ct. far right bottom: Q2STRP51M16 Steel case, polished round bezel. Quinting 2 movement 3 hands. Dial with 108 diamonds (0.534 cts) 12 rubies (0.0618 cts). Leather strap.

The twelve new Zodiac models which set crimped diamonds directly on the sapphire representing the constellations. Finally the new Hypnose collection that expands the limits of the kinetic watchmakers art. This fascinating and attractive range replaces some sapphire with polished stainless steel discs. The Hypnose watches include two revolving discs moving with each second, in opposite directions, creating stunning and entrancing motifs in constant evolution. The perpetual cycle and the hypnotic movement enhance these exceptional watches with a dynamic, modern and evolutionary design.



Anxious Times Psychologist, Cecilia d’Felice believes we’ve lost touch with our humanity and it’s anxiety that is driving our decision making and offers some pointers as to how we can reconnect with ourselves and live without fear


n epidemic of anxiety floods its way across the advanced capitalist nations of the world. This is no trick of the mind to be routinely absolved with a sympathetic pat on the back, or a dose of cognitive behavioural therapy. The pressures are very real. If ever there was time for a polemic, it is now, so here is mine. As the BRIC empires expand their horizons exponentially, their focus gazes ever West. China owns America we are told; it is unlikely they will feel the need to stop there. We often fear what we do not understand and when have we ever really understood the survivors of that bleak genocide ironically known as the Cultural Revolution? No wonder we fear our Eastern cousins, with their ability to endure the toughest conditions and the worst human rights in the

Well no, not really. India is not the only advancing power that can stake a claim in that domain. Let’s not even start about global warming, the revolting toxic wastelands we are creating, the destruction of the very life source of the planet, all for the obese consumption of hamburgers. Then there are the oil and water wars of the future haunting our nightmares. Moving from the global arena to our own domestic front our working lives have become the equivalent of technoslavery. We sit for hours, flickering screens our seeming ally, but whose vibrations - in the absence of grounding ourselves through a balanced life style of exercise, freshly prepared, highly nutritious foods, relaxation and time for personal creativity and face to face relationships - soar us into stress, unable

Now is the time to throw away the notion that success can only be measured in dollars and celebrity Cecilia d’Felice industrialised world. We feel soft and feeble in comparison and with good cause; will we too become slaves to the pathologically ideological machine that is China? We wonder what we have to offer. America’s unregulated banking system episodically bringing us to our knees through outrageous greed and searing incompetence. Yet their hegemony remains unchallenged and we continue to tremble in their thrall, ever undulating in a miserable sado-masochistic waltz; like a bad marriage, we can’t live with them and we can’t live without them. Ugh. We soothe ourselves in the belief that knowledge is power and don’t we have ownership of Information Technology? Isn’t that going to save us?


to sleep, bizarrely addicted to stimulants in an already over stimulated world. Our gender roles bring further confusion. Women are supposed to work full time, raise a family, clean a house, cook from scratch and look permanently 25. And what of men? What indeed has become of men? Who are they supposed to be now, as they survey the crumbling ruins of the false promises that no government could ever keep and yet, incredulously, keep on coming. Are they instrumental breadwinner or disenfranchised househusband? Outpaced, outsmarted and out manoeuvred, it is hardly a surprise that screen technologies have become their mistress. Left to survive on a desert island, how


many of us now know how to set a fire, build a shelter, grow food, divine water and understand the rhythms of nature? Surely, learning to grow and prepare your own food should be a basic educational requirement. We teach our children to do more, be more and have more. We do not teach them to look after their bodies, relax their minds, open their hearts and learn skills that can help them cope with this technologically inspired age and beyond: Skills of communication, conflict resolution, skilful emotional expression and most importantly how to love and respect themselves, so that they can love and respect others. Advertising should be banned for children. No argument. It’s just plain wrong. It isn’t particularly right for adults either, feeding the terror machine of low self-esteem and manipulating it into downright depression as we contemplate the dissonant sea of ‘not good enough, not have enough’ that it remorselessly spawns. So it is no wonder that we live in fear. We have lost touch with the basic skills of life that advanced our species to this current level of evolution and we are fast in danger of becoming victims of our own success. With America pipping the UK in the most psychologically disturbed nations of the world contest, surely it is time we woke up to reality and made some choices that will prevent us heading into an almighty disaster. There is so much that we could be doing differently. So much we could be offering our young people so that they can recreate the world in balance and harmony. Now is the time to throw away the notion that success can only be measured in dollars and celebrity.

Learning to value ourselves, have healthy self-esteem, knowing that we are good and strong people who can survive, whatever, would be a good start. A society that recognises the need for compassion, awareness, fundamental life skills, joy and harmony is a society that will be able to negotiate a successful future without fear. Ten commandments for the 21st Century could look

something like this. Add your own. We need all the help we can get. I will love unconditionally by not trying to control or manipulate others, but grant them the emotional and physical freedom that I myself desire. I will prioritise my health and wellbeing, for without my health I cannot act with power in the world. I will in turn, prioritise the health and wellbeing of those who require support. A healthy society is a caring society. I will learn skilful ways of resolving conflict and stress, so that I do not endanger my psychological health or the psychological health of others. I will serve my community and not expect it to serve me. I will treat advertising as an amusing sideshow aimed to distract me from the real issues of my life. But that’s ok, because I am smarter than they are. I will vote with my feet, always. I will give up my addiction to rolling news, understanding that it keeps me in a state of fear from which I am easily manipulated by media, government and finance, undermining the sense of power I have in my world, the one I can genuinely influence. I will accept that I cannot have it all and be happy with what I have. I will live knowing that I do not inherit the earth but that my grandchildren will and in turn will theirs. I will stop being afraid and do something. Dr Cecilia d’Felice Author of 21 Days to a New You, (Orion) Join me at DrCeciliadFelice



The film lover’s guide to ...


A capital that is both picturesque and photogenic. International Life’s Martin Guttridge Hewitt finds romance on every corner in one of Europe’s grandest cities. below: Vienna Volksoper


It’s just before 8.45PM and the window inside the lavatory cubicle is locked, properly. If you listen hard enough the sound of riotous laughter is still audible from inside the main theatre space, but tonight’s performance of Der Fledermaus is irrelevant, albeit enjoyable. Really all that matters is that I can’t prise open the building’s most famous unofficial exit, climb down onto the street below, avoid a sniper’s bullet and locate my pre-defined safe house. Suffice to say though, with no military training to speak of, other than a recent day


paintballing, it’s probably good things aren’t going to plan. Admitting defeat (and relief) I make my way back to the foyer bar in time for the seemingly obligatory intermission fizz, which tastes better than the mouth full of wood-chippings that could have resulted from breaking a way out of the toilet at the understated but still impressive Volksoper. Roughly translated as People’s Opera, it’s the less splendid of Vienna’s two main opera houses, though that’s not saying too much. Across town the State Opera is

widely considered the finest example of its kind in the world. Dripping with pomp and prestige it’s a huge structure that should be seen by any visitor (and can’t be missed, what with its location as a focal point on the main thoroughfare of Karntner Ring, opposite the worldfamous Sacher Hotel). Obviously then most other addresses would look less striking in contrast. Nevertheless, the building we’re in is still wonderfully evocative, dominating a corner of traditional-looking Währinger Straße, and having played host to performances since 1898.


the State Opera is widely considered the finest example of its kind in the world. Dripping with pomp and prestige 89 years later and scouts for The Living Daylights, Timothy Dalton’s first appearance as Bond, chose this as a location replacement for a Bratislava symphony hall. Here the super spy had to prevent a KGB assassin from targeting a Soviet defector escaping via the bathroom. The musical home to beautiful blonde Maryam d’Abo (see also- Dorian Gray), it’s not hard to see why it fit the production criteria. People’s Opera is a logical name, given there’s a non-bourgeoisie, functional but grand, old European feel about the red velvet clad interior and perfect white exterior, complete with balcony terrace. Indeed, it’s a far cry from another key location featured in the same film (though after the on-screen action relocates to Austria), Schonbrunn Palace. Easily Vienna’s most iconic royal home, it’s worth a visit just to explore the expansive, wonderfully maintained gardens. Of course the cinematic history of Austria’s stunning capital goes far beyond one of the ‘lesser Bonds’. Evading militant communists by turning cello into sledge is entertaining, but Richard Linklater also used the city as an iconic backdrop for his classic love story, Beyond Sunrise. It’s not surprising Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy fell in love as a result of the sights, sounds and smells of this town, as there’s something tangibly Romantic around almost every corner, and any visitor will surely find themselves equally beguiled by their surrounds. When those two passing ships first meet on a train from Budapest they arrive at Vienna’s Sudbahnhof train station, from which their day of passion and sight seeing begins. This once bustling transport hub is no more as a brand new central terminus approaches completion, but walking five minutes from the building-site carcass offers a myriad of unique photo musts. The Palais Schoenburg is close by, on Rainergasse, and deserves to be seen by more people than the lucky couples who book to get married in the radiantly

polished address. Even more impressive is the world famous Belvedere Palace, also in the immediate area. It’s now used for highclass events, includes an internationally recognised art gallery, and comes with pristine grounds boasting copious fountains linking the two elegant buildings together. Meanwhile, for the more adventurous, St Elizabeth church, which dissects Argentinierstraße, is less easy to find, but equally worth the effort and also in the vicinity. There is a beautifully maintained Roman Catholic structure resting in a peaceful square, handily from here you could keep walking towards the first district, for 20 minutes or so, and pass by the stunning St Charles’ Church, an imposing structure on Karlsplatz at Resselpark. This public space sees open air screenings in the summer too, providing one of the greatest locations to watch a movie in Europe. All of which is before we’ve even mentioned Carol Reed’s timeless and universally acclaimed The Third Manfar and away the most vivid depiction of Vienna on celluloid, forming the filmic highlight of any trip. Set in the immediate post-World War II years, the film’s image of spooky, darkened passageways, hidey-holes and political unease is difficult to forget, but of course the reality is far different these days. That devastated urban picture and ‘no-man’s-land’ atmosphere has been replaced with a vibrant, metropolitan and noticeably laidback Western ethos befitting 60 years of democratic peace. That said, stroll down any number of downtown side streets or alleyways and discover the kind of shadowy aesthetics befitting the Oscar-winning feature. These are places wherein the night creates eerie silhouettes and movements caught in the corner of an eye are never seen again. Don’t worry too much though, the central districts are perfectly safe and no doubt any sight problems experienced late in the evening will result from the fine Austrian wine (or excellent beer) that has been consumed

at any one of the innumerable worldclass bars and restaurants. The relatively recent history of Vienna could be quite different though, as the city came close to becoming ‘another Berlin’ when districts were divided into Allied or Soviet governance. Such a complex period is particularly difficult to grasp for Britons, but a trip to The Third Man Museum, within easy reach of the Naschmarkt (at Pressgasse 25), sheds some light on that situation. Most of the items in this privately owned and continually expanding collection are simply artefacts from the movie, and that’s nothing to complain about. But perhaps what’s most fascinating of all, more than the beautifully restored film projector or sewer grate on show to prove it’s impossible to fit your fingers through the iron struts, is the collection of letters, identity cards, visas, and similar documents dated from 1945 onwards; first hand explanations of time, place, and era. Of the film’s many props the Wiener Riesenrad is the most recognisedthat’s the huge Ferris wheel used for the final showdown (located in Prater park). Rising to look out over the Danube’s tributaries and one of the continent’s most impressive city scenes, it’s a lovingly restored antique, and an essential ride for anyone, not just cinephiles (who will no doubt relish The Third Man Tour, which includes a trip through the network of sewers and tunnels that run under the town’s surface). So whilst it’s not featured in as many films as Paris, London or New York, scratching beneath the surface to explore the ancient avenues of Vienna throws up all manner of examples that prove this landlocked city not only has an island like individualism, but is one of the most photogenic on the planet. And not just from the summit of our final destination. Because inspiration for images is in abundance here, meaning all you need to do is pay a visit in order to add a few new stories of your own.



In the


So how does photographer Bernd Talasch choreograph his shots so well without the co-operation of his subject? Well he has patience in abundance and is good at waiting... then he captures them ‘in the moment’, guard down, when most celebrity snappers are angling for the PR portrait on the red carpet.

Prints available to purchase from



opposite page: The porcelain beauty of Scarlett Johansson at the première of Avengers, Leicester Square, London. Jan 2012 top: A sartorially ornate Kristen Stewart’ enjoys 360˚ attention at the première of Snow White and the Huntsman, Leicester Square, London. Jan 2012 bottom: ‘I am the greatest’. Will Smith in jovial ‘Ali mode’ as he indulges the crowd. Première of Men in Black 3, Leicester Square, London. Jan 2012


Lalique Aerosystem One iPod Docking station Stunning hand blown/cut crystal, made in collaboration with Jean-Michel Jarre

RRP: £10,000

gadget RCX3 with GPS RCX3 GPS training computer. Aimed at runners, cyclists and fitness enthusiasts this stylish training computer provides cutting edge heart rate functions along with Polar’s Smart Coaching features to take the guesswork out of training sessions. RRP £259.50

The Kobo Vox Colour eReader Parent Tested and Parent Approved The Kobo Vox Colour eReader is Perfect for Busy Families. Available at WHSmith. RRP: £149.99

The Factor 001 bicycle has been designed from the ground up as an integrated, cohesive device, it also records multi-channel ergonometric data for the ultimate athlete in you. RRP: £20,000



Meridian M6 loudspeakers designed, engineered and assembled by hand in Britain, the M6 offers the best quality music in a contemporary and innovative design that fits easily into any home environment. RRP: £4,500 per pair


World’s Largest Plasma TV from Panasonic Panasonic’s recently launched enormous 152” plasma screen, valued at £500,000, offers an unrivalled viewing experience. Price on application from UK stockists; PSCo at

Tecnologia Aeroespacial Mexicana’s Rocket-Belts A custom-made flying rocket belt with hands-on training for 10 flights, maintenance and 24/7 expert support. RRP: £155,000 NeuroSky brainwave headset NeuroSky make the worlds first brainwave headset. Use it to influence movies as you watch or interact with over a hundred mobile apps. Compatible with Apple iOS products, including iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad and Android phones and tablets. Hysterical video with brainwave influenced cat’s ears here: RRP: £78 from


Necklace from Firouzeh’s ‘Rainforest’ collection. The 18 carat gold nuggets are hand crafted to represent the shape and silhouette of the Brazil Nut seeds, key to the importance to the ecosystem. £12,000

Veritas Pavé Cross Pendant £95

Lip LCD Watch VERSA Gold £130

Lip Mach2000/ Light Moon £149

Veritas Coffee Bean Pendant £125

Veritas Nine to Five Cufflinks £54 presents an exquisite and original selection of timepieces, jewellery & accessories


Régnier Semplicita R1315 Men’s Golden Stainless Steel And Black Ceramic Strap Date Watch £310

Veritas Acorn Pendant Gold £105

Lip Watch Big TV Steel £225

Lip Watch Fridge Gold Black / Black Nubuc £178

Veritas Ammonite Cufflinks Purple £54


watches & jewellery

above: Modica Orbis Ring This distinctive sculptural Sterling silver dress ring with sleek curves is a real statement piece. £225


left: Régnier Variya R1274 Men’s Chronograph. Brown Leather Strap Watch 2040232. £560

right: Régnier Dilys R1348 Men’s Chronograph Watch. 2050422 with Stainless Steel Strap. £525

middle: Régnier Semplicita R1320. Ladies Black Stainless Steel Diamonds Bezel Strap Watch 2080212. £475

below: Arianna Cerrito ‘Jewelwear’ -Cutting edge sculptural bonding of luxury dresses with hand-crafted jewel pieces. Worn together or independently of each other. See p.35

Now you can buy direct from London’s top chocolatier visit

London’s Jeff de Bruges is now online offering you a mouth watering choice of fine chocolate with intense flavours. Choose from a sparkling array of beautifully gift wrapped offerings.

Also available in the UK at: N A T U R E L L E M E N T


13 South Molton Street Mayfair London W1K 5QW

Opening times: Mon-Sat 10am-7pm Sun 12pm-6pm

T 020 7409 0213

Nearest tube: Bond Street Delivery: Worldwide

gift gallery opposite page, top left: Polo lessons. You will be on a polo pony for a full hour with a private instructor. In the lesson you will be coached on how to work with your pony in walk, trot and canter and learn the basic polo swing techniques: £120 Group Lessons: 1 hr sharing with 3-5 people. £105

above: Dennis the Menace. Limited edition, handmade screen print on cotton Somerset textured paper by Comic Art. £185 right: Olive Oyl: Kiss. Limited edition, handmade screen print on cotton Somerset textured paper by Comic Art. £280 presents a cool selection of gifts and experiences from some of the most original and inventive designer makers in the UK Obe-lits® contain an inbuilt energy efficient light source. Light can shine out through the translucent rings that in turn illuminate the space around. £7,000

Philip Wright Striped straw cloth vintage inspired saucer hat with curled pheasant tails (a one-off) £225

Spotty Hardwood Lamp 3-in-1. They are shaped to allow them to stand as up lights, rest on their sides as angled spot lamps or to be suspended as pendant lamps. £220

Philip Wright Black and White Hat £225

right: Magnificent Gentleman’s Dressing case, bound in finest Dauphin calf, lined in sumpteous suede. £3,975

right: Elect. Fine Art Photograph by Dennis Hopper, signed on back. Printed by Robert Mann £4,440 below: Brian Jones of the Rolling Stones. Photographed and signed by Dennis Hopper. Printed by Robert Mann. £4,440

above: Subbuteo® “stadium” with reversible table/poker top, complete with teams & chips/cards, bound in Dauphin calf. £7,850




hat do the three most talked-about restaurants in Europe - The Fat Duck, Noma and El Bulli (RIP) - all have in common? Apart from the fact that you can’t book a table for the life of you (Noma currently has an average of 1400 people on its waiting list every day), none of them make money. They’re all rather proud of that. But then one day their accountant tells the chefs who created them that they can’t pay their bills so in the case of El Bulli, they finally wake up and smell the deconstructed three ways coffee and close up shop or in Heston Blumenthal’s case, you find a day job that pays to sustain the passion project. I met him once - in Delhi of all places. What a lovely guy. Most chefs are - more than their joint image would have you believe. So the Mandarin Oriental in Knightsbridge had the bright idea of revamping its image by hiring two of the world’s best chefs. Daniel Boulud, New York’s answer to Gordon Ramsay, occupies the basement and Heston has the first floor space that used to be home to Foliage. Previously the room was special because of its views over Hyde Park but Heston has changed that and now it is special for its views over the kitchen. If you want to see the park, well you go to the park. The bar remains famous for its views over the second largest number of hookers in London outside of the Intercontinental rooftop bar. The menu is not as crazy as The Fat Duck and instead goes back through British culinary history and revives dishes that were in their time considered classics. Start with the Meat Fruit - rich, unctuous chicken liver parfait with an orange coating so that it resembles


Review Dinner by Heston A haven for food lovers. Iqbal Wahhab lauds Heston Blumenthal for his culinary vision for the first floor of the Mandarin Oriental and his emphasis on substance over style.

The bar remains famous for its views over the second largest number of hookers in London outside of the Intercontinental rooftop bar a mandarin (geddit?) Other starters include a savoury porridge, consisting of roast cod, beetroot, garlic, parsley and fennel which had more flavours going on than you get the time to enjoy. Celebrated main courses include cod cooked in cider with chard and mussels - simple, elegant and distinctive. A daily special featured a fillet of beef slowly cooked for 49 hours in a process called sous vide which basically acts like a warm bath. If that dish is on the day you visit, you must try it. It’s so soft it’s almost like a mousse. Desserts here are not to be skipped. Tipsy cake is a roasted pineapple and

the modest sounding Chocolate Bar is a glossy brick of the most intense flavour. You will also need to leave room for something off the ice cream trolley which comes to your table and cranks custard with liquid nitrogen. You want to love it because you love watching it being made. Dinner by Heston attracts a varied clientele, tourists and ladies up from the country during the day and suited gents in the evening. Unlike say Novikov, it’s relatively easy to get a table. That tells you something about the London diner they won’t come to Heston’s on a regular basis because it’s all about the food.


Review The Bull at Burford Iqbal Wahhab finds the culinary bar set not too high in the picturesque Cotswolds and despite its shortcomings, believes The Bull at Burford is ‘as good as it gets’ in this part of the country

The Bull has something of the air of Fawlty steak and ale pies. They took French Towers except here... Manuel inpresentation and technique and applied is French rather than Spanish it to foreign cuisines and so a Thai style


o, which village is the twee-est of the twees? Well that has to be Burford, in the Cotswolds. Imagine you’re on Kensington Church Street and you’re immediately transported to the high street of Burford with its expensive little shops selling trinkets you will wish you’d never bought and where the average age of a resident seems to be 75. I was down for the weekend visiting a friend who has moved there after decades of fornicating frolics in Chelsea and was curious to see what might have allured him. The answer to that was pretty obvious when I visited his house with immaculate garden on the river. But where do you go for fun? How do you choose a restaurant when they all appear to be the same country pub type with pricey rooms above, all with two or three rosettes? Escaping from my friend Jonathan for a while (he talks a lot) I call some friends who live in the nearby Forest of

Dean for lunch and ask them to choose the location. Their choice, it transpires, is regularly ranked as Burford’s finest. Slap in the middle of aforementioned high street, The Bull has something of the air of Fawlty Towers except here the Manuel is French rather than Spanish. Ask him to fetch you a drink, he virtually bows in obeisance - only never to be seen again. The menu is very very fancy and is reflected by the fact that the pretty and ornate dining room was very very empty. They say the easiest person to sell to is a salesman and that’s certainly true of me. The wine list starts not with “bin ends” but with a “Vintage Wine Sale”. How they must have laughed that night that some bloke from the smoke had finally got suckered by that one. The menu screams “Please can I have a Michelin star?” with fancy ingredients and stuff done three ways. To be fair to them, they were trying harder than their neighbours who all seemed to specialise

fish cake didn’t have that usual chewy texture but had a more pleasant lightness of touch and look. The chef clearly has a love of black pudding as it features widely on different dishes and made for an interesting (jury remains out on whether that means good) take on Moussaka, Moroccan tagine and even a puree. Things took a decidedly local turn at the end with a plate of excellent local cheeses. Everyone’s terribly polite in this part of the world so I didn’t start waving napkins when I couldn’t get service, not that it would have made any difference as here there was no-one to wave them at. It appears to be run by the Frenchman and his daughter and I wouldn’t be surprised if he’s the chef too. If you’re visiting this part of The Cotswolds (and you should, it’s really beautiful) then visiting The Bull is probably as good as it gets, apart from the curry house down the road, more about which in the next edition of International Life.


The Mille Miglia

Those two words are so onomatopoeic, four consonants which evoke the greatest car race in the world, this majestic thousand mile rally around Italy. The quintessential race in a country that can rightly claim the greatest passion for the motorcar. The home of the “red” car, Ferrari, Lamborghini and Maserati. Yves de Contades raced for International Life

A Mille Miglia might be an outburst of folly, a sporting madness, but it is always glorious and heroic Jacky Ickx


he Mille Miglia starts in Brescia in the north of Italy, descends down the east coast to Rome over two days, and then ends with a single day dash from Rome back up to Brescia on the west coast. It is a magnificent cortege of the greatest racing cars and classic road cars ever built. To participate, the cars must have either been in the original Mille Miglia, or a car of sporting history listed in


Palmares Winner’s Lists of international significance. This is about as exclusive as it gets even before the costs of the race and the cars come into it. I went to race two Bentley “Blowers” (1929 & 1930) and the 1954 Bentley R Type Continental with Bentley Motors Ltd, now German owned but whose directors are demonstrably passionate about maintaining the quality and history of this iconic English brand.


James Bond drove a 1930’s “Blower” Bentley in Casino Royale, Live and Let Die and Moonraker. The Bentley “Blower” gets its name from the supercharger mounted at the front of the radiator. Only four team cars were developed for racing thanks to the persistent efforts of Bentley Boy Sir Henry ‘Tim’ Birkin who convinced Woolf Barnato, then owner of Bentley, they could win Le Mans by doing so. This year’s Bentley Boys were: Rolf Frech and Andrew Day, Richard Charlesworth

bullion they stole in the movie. A pre race dinner is hosted that evening by Karl Scheufele, President of Chopard Jewellers, who are the main sponsor of the event. They even produce a coveted special edition “Mille Miglia” watch which is given to each entrant, though only one per car, making it tricky deciding who keeps it between the two drivers. Stone, paper, scissors anyone? During the pre prandial drinks and to my great delight I was introduced to my childhood hero, Jacky Ickx, the

and Ian Adcock, and of course StéphanieRose Lefèvre in the R Type. On the first day the cars are registered in a big warehouse in Brescia resulting in the grandest cornucopia of classic and high end super-cars in one place ever. It is a race aficionado’s dream, you just do not know where to look next. I could not help thinking of a twist on the film “The Italian Job”, only this time they steal the cars themselves, a much bigger haul than the

legendary racing driver who could not have been more charming or debonair. This former Belgian racing driver achieved 25 podium finishes in F1 and six wins in the 24 hours of Le Mans. It is our own Stirling Moss that holds the race record at 10 h 07’ 48” in 1955, an average speed of 100 mph, which is simply incredible when you take the mountain roads into consideration. Stirling Moss’ navigator

was the journalist Denis Jenkinson who concocted a brilliant navigation instrument not unlike a loo roll in a metal box, with all the turns and directions marked down, more practical in an open car than the Tulip maps used now. On day one I drove in the Bentley “Blower” with Andrew Day, president of the Bentley Drivers club, a thoroughly English gent and great company, >>




>> to Piazza Paulo VI, where our cars were to be parked for the initial media frenzy. We had lunch in the sunshine and watched the entire population of Brescia roll by admiring the marvels cruising all over town. The greatest classic sports cars of all time are gathered for this race, supported by their modern road equivalents. The Bentley “Birkin Blower” next to the Bentley GT V8, the Bugatti Veyron next to the Buggati 35T, the Ferrari Enzo next to a Ferrari 250 GT, the Mercedes-Benz 300 SL Gullwing next to the Mercedes SLR McLaren, Aston Martin, Porsche, Fiat etc. The crowds were intense with thousands of people jostling to film, photograph or touch

country is electrifying and young kids and old timers alike are waving flags and indicating the route to the drivers. Our support cars were the 1954 Bentley R Type Continental, the new Bentley Continental GTC W12 and the new Bentley Continental GT V8. The new Continental bodies are based on the R type which has the most beautiful lines. We nicknamed it “Bella” as that was the most frequent outburst from the crowds as we appeared in the car. Though “Oooh La La Bentley”, “Que Bella” and “Bellissima” were frequent contenders. The route on the second day runs from Ferrara to Rome via the Republic of San Marino along stunning, winding

additional Ferrari support rally. Siena is turned into heaven on earth for any car enthusiast when, for one long lunchtime, it hosts a plethora of classic cars and super cars revving through its narrow streets to grand acclamation. Sadly all good things come to an end, I may even have shed a tear on parting from the Bentley R Type Continental, which along with the Bentley “Blowers” I would recommend to anyone as a sound financial investment. One of the original team “Blowers” is coming up for auction at the Goodwood Festival of Speed with a starting price of $12 million and change. The Mille Miglia is a unique life

the motors. It was a feat of skill just to get the “Blower” through the multitude which had to be gently nudged aside as the car crawled along the narrow streets towards the square. The race itself starts at around 7pm and takes in a tour of the town before roaring off towards Ferrara, the first day’s finish line. There are control time stops in every town along the way and these are used at the end to select the final winner. The passion, support and enthusiasm from the Italians is unsurpassed, the entire route is lined with families, shouting and cheering as each car roars past. Each new motor is greeted with a fervour that is normally only seen in teenagers at a pop concert, the atmosphere throughout the whole

mountain roads. The R Type whilst heavy and a manual performs like a dream and even gave the V8 following us a run for its money. The day culminated with the convoy of cars speeding into Rome headlights blazing as night fell, towards the Olympic stadium, where the after parties were being held in front of the worlds media. Each car drives up onto the famous ramp to be interviewed for television as it arrives around midnight. The third and last day is the most competitive as the cars compete to be the first back to Brescia whilst passing all the control points at precisely the right times. The stopping point in Siena is glorious as hundreds of Ferraris turn out to follow the route as part of an

experience that for sheer excitement, history, legendary racing drivers and superbly engineered cars is unparalleled in the world. Not to mention the delectable food, dazzling scenery and sympathetic people. Go for the weekend to soak up the unbelievable atmosphere or take part, if you like racing this has to be in the top ten of things to do before you die. Mille Miglia 2013 or bust. I’ll leave the last words to the legend Jacky Ickx: “It is the quintessence of an adventure as full as that of Marco Polo or of Magellan, it is also a contribution to man’s conquest of the impossible. A Mille Miglia might be an outburst of folly, a sporting madness, but it is always glorious and heroic.”



HOW to...

Play Polo in one easy lesson

International Life’s induction to the noble game was easier than imagined and in one simple, exhilarating lesson we quickly found ourselves in the thick of the action

Sylvester Stallone summed it up when he said: “Playing polo is like trying to play golf during an earthquake”

Cool Hooves Polo Hurlingham Park



lifford Odet said that sex was the poor man’s polo, now I’m not sure how he played it or how much he liked horses, but I decided to see for myself and actively participate in a few chukkers. Being London based I sprang for the Hurlingham club where a very enthusiastic company aptly named Cool Hooves were going to give me my first lesson on a very rainy spring day. The Hurlingham club is a great venue as it became the headquarters for Polo just five years after the game was first introduced to the country from India in 1875. Originally Persian, the game has been played as far back as the 5th century BC. So we started with Eddy (a very friendly and inspiring Polo aficionado) teaching us a little about the rules of the game with some elementary tactics and progressed to trying to hit the ball along the ground with the horses merely watching. Probably so they could spot who to throw off first if they swung widely with the mallet and threatened their safety. My horse (Tickles) was definitely eyeing me thoughtfully. Then it was a brief lesson in riding the horses which are the taxi cabs of the equine world. They turn on a penny and will happily push any other traffic out of the way at the slightest encouragement. Oh yes, this is a contact sport, you are allowed to gently nudge another horse aside if you are competing for the ball in the same line. In fact the horses are a delight to

ride, they are so well trained that the slightest flick of the reins or lean to the left or right will have them careering off in the right direction. Then Eddy informed us we were primed to attempt a proper game. We were sorted into two teams and with careful supervision and support, egged on by the Cool Hooves staff, we thundered around in pursuit of the ball, passing it back and forth towards the goal. It was terrific, pretty much everyone managed to hit it in the right direction and a few even scored some goals. Everyone had that look in their eyes, that gleam of competitiveness that said “we are just practising of course, but don’t get in my way, I have a large mallet.” In an hour we were all playing (slowly and without skill, but playing all the same) which is a tribute to their impressive teaching. The horses are superbly trained of course, but the basics come quick. The combination of skills that make it so fast and exciting would take much longer to master but you can enjoy playing almost immediately. Sylvester Stallone summed it up when he said: “Playing polo is like trying to play golf during an earthquake.” International Life supports Jodie Kidd’s campaign to reinstate polo in the Olympics, not seen since 1936 in Berlin. If Curling is an Olympic sport, then Polo should be a shoe-in, considering the level of talent and venerable history. Cool Hooves Polo packages can be purchased here: gifts/experiences/polo


Visit to read more from our resident polo expert Octavia Campbell-Davys who recommends these dates for your calendar >>

The UK The Guards Polo Club Audi International England vs South Africa 22nd July. Open Tournament Cowdray Veuve Clicquot Gold Cup (best tournament in the UK) British Open, 19th June - 15th July Ham Polo Club Dubai Tournament, 31st June - 11th July. 8-12 goal Berkshire Polo Club, 12-15 goal Championships, 25th Aug - 2nd September. 16 goal Cirencester, Cheltenham Cup, 28Aug - 9th September. 8-12 goal

Overseas Maspe Polo Club, Germany FIP European Championship, 6-16th September. 6-8 goal Chantilly Polo Club, France Open de France, 1-16th September. 14-16 goal Tang Polo Club, Beijing, Royal Salute Gold Cup China International Polo Open Tournament, 22-23rd September. 16 goal Tang Polo Club, Beijing, Cartier China International Polo Challenge, 11-14th October. 12 goal Jodie Kidd displays the trophy won by Major David Dawnay’s British team


food & drink

y o B e Cak

d e ll i r G

Levanah Reyes-Wainwright interviews Eric Lanlard AKA Cake Boy, master patissier and twice winner of the prestigious Continental Patissier of the Year at the British Baking Awards

I had always wanted my own shop so when the right time arrived, I went for it. The concept is almost a copy of the patisserie that I had designed in my head when I was 10 years old


Was baking something you felt you wanted to do all your life? I started baking when I was 6 and I haven’t stopped since, the first attempt was almost disastrous. Perfection, precision and discipline were certainly very important things that I learnt from my mentors. I had to wait until I turned 18 to start an apprenticeship, I walked into the kitchen on my first day and I knew straight away that is was the right choice for me.

Do you feel that baking has now become more accessible to the male market? Funnily enough in France it is a profession mostly dominated by men so for me there is nothing strange about seeing a man bake. Men like precision and they bake in the same way that they would build their Lego or Meccano models. And of course they are extremely competitive which is why they strive for perfection.

What is your proudest achievement? Opening the shop was probably my biggest achievement, I had always wanted my own shop so when the right time arrived, I went for it. The concept is almost a copy of the patisserie that I had designed in my head when I was 10 years old. Over the years I have had four television series, and I am about to have my fourth book published. Sometimes I have those ‘pinch myself’ moments – but I am still very grounded, I am still the first one in the kitchen at 6am most days.

What are your views on tv ‘celebrity’ chefs? Are they a great way to make cooking seem more understandable? I like TV chefs who demonstrate and make recipes well and accessible, there is nothing worse than watching a show and not being able to follow the recipe. Or finding out that you cannot buy the ingredients or the equipment as they are for professional kitchens only! That is what I do in my show [‘Baking Mad’], I demonstrate how simple it is to do fabulous baking with simple ingredients.

Baking has become increasingly popular, why do you think this is and how do you think it’s changed over the years? Suddenly we have more confidence to experiment in our own kitchens, people are entertaining much more at home and are rediscovering the pleasure of baking. Twenty years ago home baking was very stodgy and heavy. Now, due to easy access to great ingredients and good equipment it doesn’t have to be that way. It is relaxing, creative and rewarding and that is why I love it.

What’s the most extravagant expensive cake you’ve ever produced? We produced a very dramatic wedding cake for a high society wedding a few years ago. The intricate work and detail was really amazing and it was gilded with 23 carat edible gold. The shape was very difficult to achieve as it was almost shaped like a crown. The clients wanted the cake to stand out on the day as they had so many flowers and it did! At Cake Boy we always like a good challenge.


What are your top three baking tools? You need a good whisk, palette knife and a rubber spatula. With Britain being at the forefront of the news this year what are your favourite British Bakes? I like a good coffee and walnut cake. Every time I go to the country I will make sure I stop in a local tea room to have a slice. If you could eat one cake for the rest of your life what would it be? I do not have a sweet tooth so I don’t really eat my own cakes but I could live on a good, hot pear tarte tatin. Where do you see baking going in the future? I think people are going to start to experiment more with savoury baking; making pies and tarts. That sounds perfect to me because I’m a savoury man! Eric’s new book Tart it up! is published on 18 June. Eric has designed a glamorous afternoon tea series for the Jumeirah Carlton Tower Hotel. His British summertime inspired afternoon tea will be available from 21 May. If you missed out first time catch Baking Mad with Eric Lanlard currently showing on More4.

top left: Taken from Home Bake Published by Mitchell Beazley photo © Craig Robertson 2010 left: Taken from Tart it Up Sweet and Savoury Tarts and Pies. Eric Lanlard 2012 Published by Mitchell Beazley photo © Kate Whitaker 2012 above: Tarte Tatin: Taken from Home Bake Published by Mitchell Beazley Photograph photo © Craig Robertson 2010



International Life

interviews Professor Ian Stewart is Emeritus Professor of Mathematics, Digital Media Fellow, Mathematician, Broadcaster, Science Writer and a Science Fiction Writer. Ian’s research interests encompass Dynamical Systems, Bifurcation Theory, Pattern Formation and Biomathematics

Q: Where does your love of mathematics come from? I enjoyed maths at school. I had a wonderful maths teacher who spent lots of his free time showing a few of us interesting maths outside the syllabus. I also read Martin Gardner’s column in Scientific American regularly. Q: What prompted you to write 17 Equations that changed the world and who is the book aimed at? Equations generally get a bad press. I wanted to show their human side and explain what they have done and are doing for us. But also I wanted to face up to their formal symbolic nature. Q: What changes in maths education in the UK would you like to see? Let the teachers teach! Get rid of most of the bureaucratic box-ticking and overprescribed syllabus. Q: How did your collaboration with Dr Jack Cohen and Terry Pratchett come about? We all shared an interest in science fiction. Jack phoned me in 1990, to ask some maths/biology questions, and we started meeting regularly. He persuaded me to come to the Novacon SF convention and Terry was there (as a fan, not giving a talk). Jack knew him from before he was famous. The three of us had lunch together, and it went on from there. Q: What exciting advances are being made in the application of maths to biology systems? Maths is starting to illuminate many areas of biology by making it possible to understand how biological processes work.




A lot of new mathematical techniques are being used in cancer research: how the disease progresses, how to recognise cancerous tissue by computer, how to structure therapies to obtain the best results

Networks are being used in neuroscience and genetics. Dynamical systems models are helping us to understand evolutionary processes. A lot of new mathematical techniques are being used in cancer research: how the disease progresses, how to recognise cancerous tissue by computer, how to structure therapies to obtain the best results.

as games. One advantage of making the project into a game is that playing it is its own reward. Adding to science is also rewarding, of course, but in a more cerebral way. So it appeals to fewer people than playing a game.

Q: What maths is used in the development of the new techniques in evolutionary circuitry design? A lot of it is off-the-cuff new techniques, specifically motivated by the design problem. It’s based on a mix of probability theory, complex systems, and dynamics which enable extremely useful complex circuit designs to arise from simple models.

Q: What exciting advances in maths can we expect now and in the near future? Big advances in network theory. Many new concepts stimulated by problems in biology. Tighter links between maths and computing. Deeper theoretical understanding of complex systems. The proof of the Poincaré conjecture will open up new ideas in topology. Some long-standing problems like the odd Goldbach conjecture (every odd number is the sum of three primes) may well be solved soon. 

Q: Will we see more games software in future being used to educate in mathematics like the Foldit game in biology? I think this is likely. A huge number of science projects like Galaxy Zoo now involve large numbers of the public. Many such projects can be structured

Q: The Black Scholes equation was used to justify the massive expansion of the derivatives trade by confused bankers, can you explain a little about complexity science and the improvements it could bring to economic models? The BS equation represents one

trend that encouraged speculation in derivatives, but many other factors were involved too. Traditional economic models assume perfect information and perfect rationality, neither of which are true. Complex systems models represent, say, a stock market as a large number of individual agents, who have imperfect information and use a variety of procedures to take decisions. An important area is to design effective control mechanisms for the markets. We have seen that deregulation just leads to disaster - like a car that can go at 500 mph but has no brakes and can’t steer. Complex systems can act as safe test beds for control methods. Q: What are you working on next? The Great Mathematical Problems: a popular science book on the really big problems, solved and unsolved, all collected together in one place. 17 Equations That Changed The World by Professor Ian Stewart is available from all good book stores and is published by Profile Books:



beauty the price of

Levanah Reyes-Wainwright rounds up the most expensive beauty treatments available to make you feel like a modern day Cleopatra

Director Flavian Abbas will tease, twirl and boost your roots for a glamorous blowout.


top: Real Diamond Manicure (£1,500, at Neville in Knightsbridge above: the world’s best and first ‘self-thinking’ shampoo & conditioner: Truffle by Fuente, used for the world’s most expensive Blow-Dry (£320, Urban Retreat at Harrods)


ollow in the footsteps of Cate Blanchett and visit the Philip Kingsley Clinic (£250-£400, where the team will look at how diet, stress and lifestyle are affecting your hair and suggest changes to greatly improve its appearance. Then have a cut and colour with celebrity hairdresser of the year Jamie Stevens (£500, With clients like Kylie, Elle Macpherson and Hugh Grant, you are sure to get the benefit of his experience and sensitivity to the needs of VIP customers. Finally, treat yourself to the World’s Most Expensive Blow-Dry (£320, Urban Retreat at Harrods) using the world’s best and first ‘self-thinking’ shampoo & conditioner: Truffle by Fuente. With ingredients including the skin of white truffle, pure diamond dust and meteorite dust from space, Truffle by Fuente restores damaged hair in a single wash. A hot stone head massage encourages the ingredients to penetrate then Creative

Fresh Faced To lift and sculpt your facial contours, book yourself in for Ultherapy (from £2,000,, the ‘Ultrasound facial’ uses ultrasound to tighten and lift loose skin and encourages the creation of new collagen, without any downtime for the Ultimate Non-Surgical Uplift. Keep your skin in perfect condition with The ‘RollsRoyce of Facials’ (£220, designed by Dr Stephanie Williams. Using a HydraFacial™ the skin is cleansed, exfoliated and impurities gently extracted, this is followed by a light glycolic peel, Vitamin C mask and potent peptide complex after which the skin is bathed in red LED light to help repair damage. Lastly a super charged antioxidant serum and collagen mask help to deeply hydrate, soothe and transform your complexion. Nail it Get yourself down to the most indulgent super luxe nail area in London - Paul Edmonds eponymous beauty salon for the renowned luxury manicure (£90,, which includes celebrity fans Penelope Cruz and Madonna. Finally, ensure you have that extra Wow factor with the Real Diamond Manicure (£1,500, at Neville in Knightsbridge. A highly luxurious and anti-ageing hand treatment is performed, then special Acrylic is painted onto the nails before the diamonds are set, so the nail can take the weight of these beautiful gems.

Chatila 22 Old Bond Street, London W1 T 020 7493 9833

The Watch Gallery 129 Fulham Road, London SW3 T 020 7581 3239

Within moments of slipping behind the wheel of the new Continental GTC, the spirit lifts. Upon opening the roof, it soars. Nought to exhilarating in mere seconds. The powerful bonnet and muscular haunches create a sporty stance enhanced by the sculpted profile of the sharp, sweeping lines. The eye is drawn to the surface as it flows effortlessly like liquid, creating unbroken mirror-image reflections. A new world of immaculately-tailored hide upholstery and mirror-gloss wood trim await inside. Then, at just the touch of a button, the smoothest choreography sees it open to the world.

This most exhilarating open-top driving experience awaits. The turbocharged W12 FlexFuel engine poised to deliver a tidal wave of power. 567bhp and 700 Nm of torque propels you from 0-60mph in a mere 4.5 seconds. Never has there been a truer embodiment of the expression ‘the open road’. Only by experiencing it for yourself can you truly understand our designers’ new vision; a contemporary interpretation of timeless design. That’s guaranteed to make your day. Fuel economy figures for the Continental GTC in mpg (l/100km): Urban 11.1 (25.4); Extra Urban 24.9 (11.4); Combined 17.1 (16.5). CO2 Emissions (g/km): 384.

For more information call 0808 100 5200† or visit The name ‘Bentley’ and the ‘B’ in wings device are registered trademarks. © November 2011 Bentley Motors Limited. Model shown: New Bentley Continental GTC, mrrp £149,350. Price correct at time of going to press and includes VAT at 20%. Price excludes road fund licence, registration and delivery charges. †Calls will be recorded for training purposes.

International Life Magazine Summer 2012  

Fashion's a breeze on board the Christina O yacht, Yves de Contades is bumper to bumper with Lamborghini, Ferrari and Maserati at the Mille...

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