Witness the rise and rise of the female boxing champion
Go Beyond Caravaggio at the National Gallery exhibition
Meet The Savoyʼs 14th guest in the Seafood Bar and Grill
Sneak a peek through a top London photographerʼs lens
DECO BY DESIGN
Where to get your hands on that ideal overseas property
Pierre-Yves Rochon on the hotelʼs show-stopping look
TAILOR-MADE TEA How couturier Suzie Turner brought cake to the catwalk
The happiest of festive seasons
elcome to the winter issue of Savoy Magazine, a veritable feast for the senses, as we guide you through this most exciting time of year, both here in London, and at The Savoy. As Director of Food and Beverage, this is probably my favourite season (not to mention the busiest), as we endeavour to create an even more visually spectacular, stunning Yuletide offering than ever before. On November 20, guests staying with us will wake up to a ‘Frozen Fantasia’, after a night spent tirelessly bringing Christmas to life by our talented Savoy Flowers team. We’re delighted to be collaborating with fine British jeweller Boodles again this year, as they step in to design our 15ft Christmas tree for the front hall. In the Thames Foyer, visitors enjoying an ‘ice and diamonds’-inspired afternoon tea will be seated around our Louis Roederer ice rink, which is going to make for a spectacular and truly magical centrepiece. But this edition isn’t all about Noël. As we take you into the start of 2017, we have plenty of insider news, exclusive interviews and expert opinions, as well as the latest in fashion, property, travel, and all that our exciting city has to offer. Award-winning designer Pierre-Yves Rochon talks about putting his stamp on The Savoy over the years, from heading up all of the hotel's interior design for the reopening in 2010, to being behind the more recent refurbishments of the Savoy Suite, Royal Suite, Thames Foyer and Beaufort Bar vestibule.
Elsewhere, Nicola Adams MBE, the first woman to win an Olympic boxing title, chats exclusively about her time in Rio, while author and journalist Adam Jacot de Boinod shares his love for one of the world’s most romantic cities, Venice. As always, we like to give our readers an insider peek of life behind the scenes, so we invited our editor for a day with the guest services team, who look after VIP clients, ensuring that every aspect of their stay is nothing short of impeccable. Plus, we hear from British couturier Suzie Turner about her Salon Couture Afternoon Teas, which have been delighting our fashionista guests over the last few months. Renowned wedding planner Bruce Russell is back with tips on hosting the most enchanting winter event, and Sally Vaughan, contemporary art curator for The Savoy from Go Figurative, reveals the inspiration behind a sculpture of our four-legged friend, Kaspar, by Jonty Hurwitz, which is positioned in the eponymous Seafood Bar and Grill restaurant. To all of our Savoy friends, we wish you the happiest of festive seasons and start to the New Year, and look forward to returning with the next copy of Savoy Magazine in 2017.
LEE KELLY DIRECTOR OF FOOD AND BEVERAGE THE SAVOY
EVENTS Savoy pianist Jon Nickoll
PRODUCTS Splash on life’s little luxuries
INTERIORS Pierre-Yves Rochon Design
CELEBRITY Boxing champ Nicola Adams
FASHION Suzie Turner’s couture show
JOURNEY Serenity in the Floating City
JETS Delicious dining at 40,000 ft
INVESTMENT Stamps at Stanley Gibbons
WEDDINGS Bruce Russell’s winter tips
SERVICE Kelly Rimmer’s guest service
JEWELLS The art of Symbolic & Chase
WINE Louis Roederer’s fizzy family
ART Curious Kaspar comes to life
GALLERY Caravaggio at The National
EDITOR Frederick Latty email@example.com HEAD OF DESIGN Rowena Cremer-Price firstname.lastname@example.org PUBLISHING DESIGN MANAGER
Xela Ruy email@example.com PRODUCTION CO-ORDINATOR Lauren Chalmers-Stevens firstname.lastname@example.org COMMERCIAL Gemma Hak email@example.com Chris Anson firstname.lastname@example.org EDITORIAL DIRECTOR Richard Moore email@example.com COMMERCIAL DIRECTOR Nick Moore
DESTINATION All along The Northbank
MOTOR BMW's new 7 Series models
PHOTOGRAPHY Matthew Joseph’s city snap
SUPPLIER Sleep beautifully with Savoir
PROPERTIES Dream pads to buy overseas
SHOWS All that London has to offer
COVER IMAGE Jenny Hands www.jennyhands.com
CONTRIBUTORS Adam Jacot de Boinod AUTHOR AND JOURNALIST
Agatha O’Neill ARTIST AND DESIGNER
Sally Vaughan MANAGING DIRECTOR, GO FIGURATIVE
ONE MEDIA AND CREATIVE UK LTD 16 Lonsdale Gardens, Tunbridge Wells, Kent TN1 1NU +44 (0)1892 779 650 • www.one-media.co Savoy Magazine is owned by The Savoy and published/distributed by One Media and Creative UK Ltd. All rights reserved. The views expressed in this publication are not necessarily those of the owner or publisher. All prices are correct at the time of going to print. Neither the publisher nor the owner can accept responsibility for any errors or omissions relating to advertising or editorial. No part of this publication may be reproduced without prior written consent from the publisher or owner. No responsibility is taken for unsolicited materials or the return of these materials whilst in transit.
Jane Stanbury PRINCIPAL, EMERALD MEDIA
Bruce Russell WEDDING AND PARTY PLANNER
“I’M A HALF-SHOT OF SAVOY WITH A HALF-SHOT OF JON NICKOLL…” As the youngest resident musician to play in The Savoy’s iconic American Bar, pianist Jon Nickoll has been charming audiences with his sultry sounds for more than a decade. Here, we find out how he brings the space to life through his music, and look at some of the hotel’s other events coming up
How did you get into music?
later, I still learn something new from the
to have been, and continue to be, part of
I’ve always been a musician, really. My father
room every night. It’s impossible to take
the American Bar family. Of course, I’m
taught me a few chords on guitar, and I was
the place for granted – it won’t let you!
still constantly looking over my shoulder,
up and off playing and singing
waiting to be forcibly ejected
The Beatles, Elvis and Buddy
and exposed as a fraud!
Holly from the age of about six. I always ran to pianos and
What can visitors expect
keyboards from a similar age,
from your set?
and when I was about seven, my
The performance times in the
parents picked up an old reed
bar are 6.30pm to 11.30pm,
organ from a boot fair – I guess I
so generally I keep things
taught myself to play then.
quite mellow and light for
I also remember pretending
the first few hours – plenty
to play the piano on my pillow
of American Songbook
as a very young child, and
material, and hits by the
seeing the teacher in primary
great jazz singers (Sinatra,
school pounding out a religious
Crosby, Ella Fitzgerald etc.).
number on the old school piano
But as the evening stretches
certainly had a positive effect on
on, I pick things from a
me, though I wouldn’t describe
wider net; a bit of Beach
it as a religious conversion!
Boys, some Elvis, some ‘60s numbers, and so on. I also
You’re the youngest
sneak a few of my own
resident musician to play in
compositions into the mix
The Savoy’s American Bar
when no one’s looking, and
– what does it mean to be
of course I take requests.
part of its musical heritage and legacy?
Do you tend to engage
There’s something almost
with your audiences,
impossible to pinpoint or define
or blend in as part
about the American Bar, which
of the bar’s overall
never fails to excite, inspire and intrigue me.
The room has a huge spirit and presence,
atmosphere when you're playing?
I’ve been performing there since 2004; I was
and as a musician, I really feel that. I
I think the secret to playing music in any
23 when I began, and now, all these years
have to say, I feel completely honoured
hotel bar is finding the balance between
background and foreground; the music should be at a level that doesn’t interfere with the guests who aren’t particularly focused on the live entertainment, but at the same time, cater for the people who want to be more engaged with what I’m doing. The American Bar, unlike many bars, famously has the piano in the centre of the room; you really can’t miss it, so I always feel very conscious and sensitive to the mood of the people immediately around me. It will often be the people who don’t seem to have paid any attention to me at all who will tap me on the shoulder on their way out and say something lovely – maybe comment on something I played an hour before, maybe even send a drink over… Maybe I shouldn’t say that! In what ways does your style complement the bar’s world-famous reputation? I try to play the role and do what people would expect the pianist of The Savoy’s American Bar to do, but I also can’t help sounding and playing in my own individual way. So I hope, after all these years, that, to borrow mixology/ cocktail terms, I’m a half-shot of Savoy with a half-shot of Jon Nickoll. Finally, what are your hopes for your residency at the hotel going forward? I’ve been so lucky to have been associated with the bar for these last 12 years, and I can’t imagine a time when the American Bar won’t be my HQ. I must say, right now is personally one of my happiest times in the bar. The bar manager Declan McGurk and head bartender Erik Lorincz are really launching the AB into the 21st century with care, respect and innovation. I was recently asked to produce the musical score and appear in a silent movie to promote the bar’s new cocktail menu, and it’s ideas and creative thinking like this that really make this time period stand out to me. The iconic bar is in the safest of hands, and I feel completely privileged to provide the soundtrack. Right, “Fly me to the moon…” www.jonnickoll.com
Chocolate master class SUNDAY NOVEMBER 6 A sweet and tempting introduction to chocolate by of one of our award-winning chocolatiers. During this hands-on class, guests will have the chance to create two unique recipes, consisting of crafting the perfect ganache, mousses and sauces. £185 per person.
Historical tours MONDAY NOVEMBER 7 AND MONDAY DECEMBER 5 Follow in the famous footsteps of Winston Churchill and Marilyn Monroe when you embark on a historical tour, led by hotel archivist Susan Scott. Listen to the innovative stories, secrets and authentic heritage that truly hallmark the iconic identity of The Savoy, finishing up in our charming Savoy museum bar for a glass of Champagne. Savoy storytelling – our best-kept secret! £40 per person and available for up to eight guests per tour.
Burlesque SUNDAY NOVEMBER 6 AND SUNDAY DECEMBER 4 Celebrate the theatrical history of The Savoy by enjoying an evening of scintillating burlesque entertainment, which combines old-fashioned glamour with performers from London’s ‘new cabaret’ scene. Doors open at 7pm, £30 per person.
Dinner Dance SATURDAY NOVEMBER 26 AND SATURDAY DECEMBER 10 We invite guests to put on their dancing shoes and enjoy the talented sounds of the
Cocktail master class
young Alex Mendham and His
SATURDAY NOVEMBER 12
Orchestra. The evening
Hosted by a bartender from the American or Beaufort Bar, guests
begins at 8pm with a cocktail
will learn how to make four innovative cocktails, while listening to
reception, followed by a
the history of spirits and the influence The Savoy had on the cocktail
three-course dinner and a floor
world. The class finishes with a luxury three-course meal in Kaspar’s
that will encourage dancing until
Seafood Bar and Grill. £185 per person and available for up to four
midnight. £125 per person.
guests per class.
Dreaming of a pink Christmas
alongside mirrored deco squares and rectangles. Perfect decorations
SUNDAY NOVEMBER 20
in ‘Boodles pink’ tones sit alongside
This Christmas, The Savoy will be
ombre and mirrored details, in line with
transformed into a ‘frozen fantasia’,
the ‘ice and diamond’ theme that has
featuring a magnificent 15ft
been selected for this stunning tree.
Boodles-inspired Christmas tree, and, for
Louis Roederer, a family-owned
the first time in Savoy history, an indoor
Champagne house since 1776, and
ice rink and cascading Louis Roederer
The Savoy’s preferred Champagne, has
Champagne bauble installation.
collaborated with the hotel to create the
Celebrated for its annual creative
ice rink installation in the Thames
festivities, The Savoy’s spectacular
Foyer. To bring the idea to life,
showcase will feature sparkling ‘ice
London-based creative production
and diamond’-inspired decorations,
agency, We Are Family, who took
with Boodles’ signature pink and Louis
inspiration from a child’s jewellery box
Roederer Champagne festive offerings.
featuring a spinning dancer.
Floral design team Savoy Flowers will
Designed and made for The Savoy by
work tirelessly throughout the night on
renowned sculptor Gareth Knowles, a
Saturday November 19 to transform
life-size ice skater will pirouette under
the entire hotel. Guests retiring to bed
the Champagne bauble-adorned
that Saturday night will wake up to a
gazebo, and continually twirl on an
magical Christmas surprise on Sunday
ice-like surface throughout Christmas
and New Year in the Thames Foyer.
The Boodles Yuletide tree, a
A Champagne festive afternoon tea
magnificent 15ft-high Nordmanniana,
will feature Boodles-inspired patisserie
will be adorned with elegant, bespoke
and Louis Roederer Vintage Rosé cuvée.
decorations, inspired by some of the
Priced at £82 per person, and available
jeweller's most iconic designs, created
from Sunday November 20 2016 until
using cut mirror, which will hang
Friday 6 January 2017.
Festive day pastry master class
Carving master class SUNDAY JANUARY 22
SUNDAY NOVEMBER 27
Simpson’s-in-the-Strand has been a London landmark restaurant since 1828,
Learn how to prepare some
and has always specialised in roast meats, carved individually at guests’ tables.
beautifully elegant festive
Perfect the traditional art of carving a variety of joints under the expert guidance
chocolates, perfect for the holiday
of our master cook. Each new carver is then invited to serve friends and family
season! We advise guests not
from one of Simpson’s famous original silver-domed trolleys. £185 per person,
to indulge too much, however,
and carvers may invite friends and family to join them for lunch at a cost of £43
so that you can fully enjoy the
per person. Please note that children aged five to 12 years are welcome to dine
three-course festive lunch that
at £15 per person, and children under five years go free.
follows. You’ll go home with the recipes from the day and a Savoy apron as a parting gift. £185 per person and available for up to eight guests per class.
To make a reservation, or for more details about the culinary events and master classes at The Savoy, please telephone +44 (0)20 7420 2111 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Learjet 75, POA
If you’re keen to know how the ‘jet-set’ roll, indulge in the ultimate trip with a privately chartered flight from Zenith Aviation. Boasting two luxurious Learjet 75s at its hangar in Biggin Hill, Zenith promises the ultimate travel experience, without any of the usual airport hassle. www.zenithaviation.co.uk
Caran D’Ache Lalique crystal fountain pen, £2,500
Black ceramic Lalique crystal fountain pen with cabochons of Lalique-brushed crystal and an 18-carat white gold nib. Founded in 1999 by William Asprey, William & Son creates and curates collections of the finest jewellery and timepieces, leather goods, and silver and glassware. www.williamandson.com
Burma ruby and diamond earrings, POA
Platinum earrings with oval and cushion-cut ‘no heat’ Burma rubies (5.71 carats), mounted with fancy-cut diamonds in white gold (9.78 carats). Founded two centuries ago, the House of Moussaieff is one of the most discreet and exclusive high jewellery emporiums in the world. www.moussaieff.co.uk
Dragons of Walton Street rocking horses, from £5,760
Designed as a central emerald-cut diamond weighing 3.73 carats, this Art Deco emerald, sapphire and diamond bracelet is flanked by two pear-shaped sapphires weighing 8.45 carats, within a pavé-set diamond surround with calibré-cut emerald and sapphire accents, embellished to each end with a cabochon gem-set floral cluster. www.symbolicchase.com
Made from either tulipwood or English chestnut, these luxurious, handcrafted and hand-painted rocking horses are lovingly created using only the finest materials and finishes. Designed to last, why not give a gift that will keep on giving to your loved ones? www.dragonsofwaltonstreet.com
PRODUCTS Great Britain 1840 Penny Black, £180,000
Biserno Tenuta di Biserno 2011 double magnum, £275
A magnificent block of six of the world’s first stamp. Multiples of the Penny Black, especially in unused condition, are very rare – and this is a superb block of six, printed from Plate 5 in the ‘intense black’ shade, unused with original gum.
This enchanting and rather hedonistic wine from Marchese Lodovico Antinori’s ultimate project, the Tenuta de Biserno range, exudes upbeat, abundant fruit, combined with hints of spice and dark coffee, complemented by citrusy freshness, underlying minerals and floral aromatics on the finish. www.corneyandbarrow.com
Globe-Trotter Champagne 9” mini utility case, £710 The Globe-Trotter special edition collection features three new colours – caviar, Champagne and pearl. Ranging from 9” mini utility cases (pictured), to 33” extra-deep suitcases, each of the new colours within the collection features a high-gloss, metallic finish and plush lining. www.globe-trotter.com
KWANPEN Plateau clutch in Mykonos, £2,320
Rediscover the colour spectrum with the Plateau clutch collection from KWANPEN, available in rainbowinspired hues. Plateau clutches in jade, sun, orange and kiss, and as shown in Mykonos. KWANPEN has been creating luxury handmade crocodile and exotic leather handbags and accessories since 1938. www.kwanpen.com
We round up 10 must-have items and experiences that arenʼt to be missed...
Feadship JOY, weekly rates from $700,000
New to the market, the 70-metre Feadship JOY is available for charter in the Caribbean this winter. Her interior exudes elegance, richness and individuality, with accommodation for 12 guests in eight cabins, including a master suite with 270° visibility through panoramic curved windows. www.burgessyachts.com
PHOTOGRAPHY BY NIALL CLUTTON
DETAILS When The Savoy officially closed its doors in 2007 for an extensive renovation, there was only one man who the hotel could count on to revive its overall look and feel. In an exclusive interview, interior designer Pierre-Yves Rochon reveals how he added his own twist
PHOTOGRAPHY BY NIALL CLUTTON
to the national treasure
f walls could talk, The Savoy’s would certainly have a story or two to tell. Glamorous movie stars, world-famous artists, revered literary figures and fabulous fashion icons have all been guests at some point throughout its 127-year history – a history that, today, can be seen in each and every room, thanks to celebrated, award-winning French interior designer, Pierre-Yves Rochon. As principal and global design director of the eponymous PYR firm, Rochon was brought in for the hotel’s £220million, three-year restoration from 2007 to 2010, but has been overseeing projects for some of the most notable hospitality brands since 1979. During that time, he’s breathed new life into luxury spaces the world over, spearheading compositions based on location, culture and history. “I’ve always loved films, and used to think I would be a director,” he says. “But I found I was more inspired by hospitality – the spirit of travel, the different cultures, and the charm of a welcoming arrival experience after a long journey. The hotels we work on at PYR are like designing permanent movie sets; they’re high drama, impactful, and always set the scene for social engagements. The devil is always in the details.” Indeed, despite his initial infatuation with the set design aspect of film, Rochon ultimately attended École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts et Arts Appliqués in Paris, where he focused on interiors. Beginning his career in the corporate sector, he was soon drawn to hospitality, securing one of his first major hotel commissions at the Four Seasons George V in Paris, which he still works on even now. This love of classic French ideals has endured over the years, and is evident across Rochon’s portfolio. From further properties in Florence, London and Geneva, to Chicago, Vienna and Monte Carlo, he fuses traditional and modern materials, textures and furniture to create new concepts that are at once sophisticated, engaging and soothing – and The Savoy was no exception. “The hotel’s iconic status is something that cannot be imitated by any other hotel in London,” he continues. “That’s why I was quite surprised when I first saw the property, because it was in such a state of extreme disrepair. But I was drawn to it because I knew it would require extraordinary effort to resuscitate, and that the transformation would be nothing less than dramatic.
SAVOY SUITE SITTING ROOM
“To be entrusted with this project was an honour. However, we were certainly under heavy public scrutiny, particularly as a French company working on such an important British icon. Thankfully, we all had a common goal to create a place that was full of history, yet very modern in its luxury experience; a place that would go beyond its former glory.” To accomplish such a feat, the original Art Deco and Edwardian aesthetic was authentically expressed in the refurbishment, while no two of the 267 guestrooms’ unique appearances were kept alike. Elegant colour harmonies of cream and light green now unite the lounge, Savoy Tea shop and winter garden with the historic River Room, American Bar and sleek black and gold Beaufort Bar. Immediately noticing that the lobby felt like a ‘hectic train terminal’, Rochon made the big decision to move the reception and cashier stations to their own quiet area – an idea that he admits is as contemporary as it is unusual, but one that he insists works well for the hotel nonetheless, offering a peaceful and relaxing check-in and check-out process for visitors.
“We study culture, history, architecture and geography as a starting point of every project we work on”
SAVOY SUITE BATHROOM
ROYAL SUITE BEDROOM
ROYAL SUITE LIVING ROOM
At the same time, some of the major historical pieces in the lobby were kept and restored, such as the glass-domed revolving doors, which had welcomed so many celebrities and historic figures in their time. Elsewhere, the layouts of the guestrooms were modernised and reconfigured to make the most of the windows, enjoying the spectacular views of the Thames. “The first key to luxury design is having the right layout and a comfortable flow, before you start adding furniture, colour and materials,” Rochon explains. “Proportion, scale and symmetry are concepts from European classicism that have been applied throughout The Savoy to create the timeless ambiance you sense today. “The two specific styles reflect the Edwardian period of when the hotel was first built, and the Art Deco period from Paris, which heavily influenced it in the 1920s and ‘30s. In France, and in Europe in general, there’s a great deal of history, and I think people tend to have a deeper appreciation for authenticity and craftsmanship because of that. Over a thousand craftsman can be credited to the detailed restoration at The Savoy.” In order to achieve his vision, Rochon used stone, wood and period colourations for the Edwardian and Art Deco schemes, with more mahogany in the former and maple in the latter. Two recent highlights that utilise both to full effect include the open, light-filled Royal Suite revamp, as well as the brand new Savoy Suite, for which Rochon teamed up with ReardonSmith Architects. The Royal Suite was remodelled to enhance the heart of the space and encourage harmonious flow between rooms, which reflect a comfortable, less formal, but just as luxurious experience. The Savoy Suite’s Edwardian influences, meanwhile, were combined with a bolder, contrasting cinnamon tone, providing a warmth that complements its use of wood, and accommodates a 21st-century clientele. “The two new suites were a delight to work on, each with its own distinct personality,” reflects Rochon. “The Savoy Suite is more contemporary, done in rich creams with red accents. It has a very dynamic feel, with a private, seasonally revolving collection of modern artwork. The Royal Suite is more classical, done in ivory and shimmering gold, with a glamorous black and gold bar, reminiscent of the Beaufort Bar.
“Both suites used to be more compartmentalised and closed off from room to room, but we joined spaces to create a more open layout, which has become much more popular in modern years. It’s always fun to reconfigure rooms and furniture to see what adds the most energy, and to anticipate how a guest will actually move, sit and set down their cocktail. I’ll still walk through occasionally and find myself readjusting furniture and accessories – design is never done!” Among the main challenges Rochon came up against was ensuring a seamless flow from one room to the next, so that guests’ time at The Savoy continued to remain as relaxed and enjoyable as possible. Fortunately, the building’s structural skeleton had already laid much of the groundwork, allowing an effortless stream of continuity to resonate through the halls. “It can certainly be a challenge to make all the functional spaces feel interesting, unique and not repetitive, but still cohesive,” Rochon admits. “The navigation and flow throughout The Savoy is very natural, with an efficient space plan that allows for a comfortable circulation experience. “I think having this foundation helps when we want to apply different styles and themes throughout the hotel. We’re purposeful in applying common materials or colours that echo across both Edwardian and Art Deco areas, such as the classic, polished black and white marble you see in the lobby, outside the tea and chocolate shop, and in the guestroom bathrooms.” As for Rochon’s personal favourites, the Beaufort Bar is undoubtedly towards the top of his list. Designed for an evening crowd, the space was renowned for its cabaret and burlesque performances in wartime – a talking point that Rochon capitalised on no end, placing the cocktail bar on the stage as ‘the star of the show’, and displaying dark silhouettes of legs in its backlight to capture the magic. “When you transition from the lightness and charm of the Thames Foyer into the darker, more intimate spaces of the Beaufort Bar, the effect is dramatic,” he considers. “The simple combination of black and gold, when applied in particular textures, patterns and layers, along with the Art Deco furniture, creates high-impact glamour. “There’s a very seductive atmosphere here, as if you’ve disappeared deep into a place of intrigue and exclusivity. As with all of our designs, the intent is to choreograph specific
types of environments that pull you out of your normal routine, and set the stage for creating new and memorable moments.” Similarly, a grand sense of occasion permeates through much of Rochon’s work elsewhere. In the Thames Foyer, the timeless tradition of afternoon tea became the focal point of the room, which was designed entirely around the popular event, including a wrought-iron winter garden gazebo to help make its scale more personal. “We study culture, history, architecture and geography as a starting point of every project we work on,” reveals Rochon. “That’s why each project is a learning experience, and no two projects are ever the same. The Thames Foyer was a space that spoke to me in particular because it was located in the heart of the hotel, and felt like it needed to be celebrated as such. “I knew afternoon tea was a very special tradition in London, so had many discussions about how to create the most authentic English tea experience possible. When you’re sitting comfortably, with natural light filtering in from the glass dome, and live music playing softly as your tea is being poured in front of you, it’s a completely enchanting experience.” A sentiment that rings true not only for the Thames Foyer, but for the hotel in its entirety. Whether it’s the sumptuous suites, beautiful bars or dazzling dining spaces, visitors can see Rochon’s personal touch around every corner. And although he continues to work in a wide range of styles, from classical to ultramodern, he’ll always instil a sense of timelessness in every nook and cranny. “The Savoy feels like it exists at the intersection of a bygone era and today,” he concludes. “Things change very quickly these days; we’re now in the age of self-driving cars, selfie sticks and Snapchats. I like to think that the basic elements of luxury don’t change so much – things like comfort, elegance and craftsmanship. “It’s an honour to continue to help the hotel evolve through the years, and to be a protector of its heritage and spirit. We’d love to keep working on The Savoy for as long as we can, and to continue delighting guests every time they step foot here.” www.pyr-design.com
U P P E R T H A M E S F OY E R
â€œI LIKE CREATI N 26 \
She’s a double Olympic boxing champion, and the most successful British woman in the sport’s history, winning countless trophies, awards and accolades. But from acting to charity work, there’s far more to Nicola Adams than meets the eye, as she reveals in an exclusive chat with Frederick Latty
ew athletes can lay claim to
is seen as an icon and role model, not just for
as much success as Nicola
her country, but for lady boxers everywhere.
Adams has enjoyed in recent
In recognitio n of her services to, and
years. Officially Britain’s
unprecedented achievement in, the discipline,
most accomplished female
she was deservedly appointed a Member of the
boxer, she’s had a whirlwind
Order of the British Empire (MBE) in the 2013
12 months in 2016, emerging as the first UK fighter to defend their Olympic title for 92 years
New Year’s Honours list. But a reputation for breaking records didn’t
in August. Two months earlier in May, she’d
stop there. In 2014 and 2015, Nicola took
already been named World Champion to boot.
home Gold at the Commonwealth Games,
Indeed, Nicola’s has been a career of firsts
as well as the first female boxing Gold at the
across the board. To date, she’s secured a
European Games in Baku. And as if that wasn’t
grand slam of titles, and is the only woman
enough, she was even selected for the privilege
in the sport’s history to have won every major
of being Team GB’s flag bearer.
honour available to her, namely Olympic,
A champion through and through, Nicola
World, European and Commonwealth. What’s
fought back from a career threatening injury
more, she became an icon at London 2012,
in 2009, winning Silver at the 2010 World
claiming Britain’s first female boxing Gold.
Championships, plus Gold at the European
Naturally, with such tremendous achievements has come great responsibility. Today, Nicola
Amateur Championships, qualifying for London 2012. In addition, she was the first English
I NG HISTORY…” / 27
though, which was good! It was a bit of a whirlwind after I won at 2012, so it took a while to sink in that I’d created history. When I went into London, I just wanted to win a gold medal. Now, I’ve won one and am also a role model, inspiring kids to get involved in sport. That took a while to get used to, but coming into Rio after that, I felt a lot more like an all-rounded, more confident athlete. I knew what it was like to go to the Olympic Games, so I felt a lot more together. Can you talk us through your mental process before getting woman to be awarded a medal
Who was your biggest idol?
in the ring?
in the 2008 AIBA Women’s
Muhammad Ali for his character, his
I’m quite chilled out for my warm-ups,
speed and his footwork in the ring.
so listen to music, talk to the coaches
The accolades are only part of
and have a laugh and a joke. We go
the Nicola Adams story, however,
You’ve had quite a year in 2016 –
through the tactics, which I’ll then have
as she works with a number of
any favourite highlights?
in my mind on the way to the ring. Once
initiatives and organisations, to
It’s been really good. I became
the bell goes, it’s just about executing
encourage people of all ages and
European Champion, followed by
those tactics and sticking to them.
abilities to join their local sports
World Champion after that, and then
clubs, while promoting a healthy
Olympic Champion, so three major
How do you feel about becoming
and well-balanced lifestyle. Through
championships in the space of five
such an icon of your sport?
these continued efforts, she strives to
months. I’m the first ever boxer, male
It’s nice to be able to say that I’m the
raise awareness of young people and
or female, to have the full grand
first double Olympic champion, and
women in sport and boxing.
slam of titles – World, European,
to be able to inspire people to get into
Commonwealth and Olympic.
sport, and boxing in particular. When I
In an exclusive interview, the highly decorated athlete talks
hear people say the titles that I’ve won
about her time in Rio and London
What was your training regime
for the 2012 and 2016 Olympics,
like in the run-up to Rio?
from an intensive training regime, to
It was quite tough. We trained three
Have you managed to adapt to
sporting glory on both counts. And
times a day, five days a week, and
all the attention?
whether she’s starring as herself in a
flew out to Rio five weeks before to
Being recognised after 2012 was
popular TV series, or collaborating
acclimatise and adjust. It was a long
different at first, but I’m a lot more
with worthy causes to transform lives
trip, as I wasn’t competing until the
comfortable and used to it now. I’ve
through sport, one thing that’s certain
end of the tournament, but once we
been able to have a little bit of time
is that she’s only just getting started…
adjusted to the time difference and
off, which has been good, but I like
the heat, I was just focused on going
So, Nicola, what made you
back to me, I’m still a bit taken aback.
straight into it.
want to become a boxer?
Tell us about the work
I got into boxing by accident, really.
Was it a different experience from
you do for charity
My mum used to do aerobics and
I do a lot with Fight for Peace, who I
couldn’t get a babysitter for my brother
Over the years, you get used to boxing
originally met in Rio with the prime
and me one night. So, she took us to
abroad, but I think the crowds were a
minister. It’s a charity that helps
an afterschool boxing class, and that
lot louder in London than they were in
young people get into education and
was it – I absolutely loved it.
Rio. I did win over some Brazilian fans,
employment through sport. It has a few
bases around the world, including one
Finally, any advice for people
in London, which is really good. I like
who are thinking of getting
the charity because it helps people if
they’re having problems at home or
Go down to your local gym and don’t
with family. It’s sport that keeps people
be afraid to try something new, and if
coming back, and then through that,
you’re not that confident, take a friend.
they get into education.
Who knows? We might have the next Nicola Adams on our hands!
Is it important to you that more female boxers make
a name for themselves? When I first started boxing, there were no Olympic female boxers. I’ve almost had to create a path, so it’s nice because the girls who come forward now know the path they need to take to become an Olympic champion. Before, I was creating the path, so it’s nice to be able to see the youngsters coming through and becoming junior and youth European and World medalists. Anyone in particular people should keep an eye on? Sandy Ryan, who’s one of the girls I train alongside, didn’t get to go to the qualifiers for the games this time, but she’s definitely a contender for 2020. Where’s it all heading going forward? I still need to have a think about it, to be honest. There are a lot of options, acting being one of them, as well as professional boxing and the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, which is another chance to create history and become a triple Olympic champion, so I’ve got three big things to think about. I’d love to be able to do a little bit more acting, as I used to work as an extra on Coronation Street, and played myself on Waterloo Road. Trying to inspire children and working alongside charities will always be a part of me, and I wouldn’t mind boxing in Miami. That would be quite nice!
CAKE ON THE
CATWALK If you’re passionate about food and fashion, you’re in for a real treat when you visit the Thames Foyer on the first Wednesday of the month. We chat with couturier Suzie Turner about her ongoing Salon Couture High Tea events, to find out what happens when dream dining meets sumptuous style
rom Audrey Hepburn to Sophia Loren, some of the world’s most glamorous fashion icons have
PHOTOGRAPHY BY JENNY HANDS
passed through The Savoy’s
doors in its 127-year history. For British couturier Suzie Turner, the gifted and highly skilled creator of luxurious clothing, it’s a tradition that’s still going strong to this day, in the form of her Salon Couture High Tea events, held monthly in the Thames Foyer. “When discussions began with The Savoy regarding the possibility of a collaboration,
“Our ultimate dream is to create a ‘go-to’ destination, and an aspirational presentation that can be the setting for celebrities, press, future fashionistas and aspiring models to attend each month. We aim to maintain and further develop the exclusivity and luxuriousness of the occasion” I jumped at the opportunity,” she says. “Working with The Savoy has been a dream of mine since I was a little girl. The hotel has such an incredible fashion history, and it was so fitting to design a Salon Couture High Tea based around this history.” Since 1990, Suzie has been producing timeless outfits for her customers, utilising the finest in British craftsmanship, and her own meticulous attention to detail. Every element of design and production is completed in-house in her London atelier, where she creates bespoke gowns that bring her clients’ dream dresses to life, ensuring a truly special couture experience. “The Savoy was the perfect partnership for our brand, as they value, above all else, the customer and the client’s experience, and we pride ourselves on the journey our clients take with us,” she adds. “Our process is very much a collaboration between designer and client; every step of the way is guided by the client to create their dream gown. “Anything is possible – it’s a beautifully exquisite process that will always result in a completely unique design. Our client always comes first, and our goal is to achieve only the best pieces, using the most skilled craftsmanship, ultimately resulting in their dream dress.” Inspired by the salon-style shows of the 1950s, as well as the couture spectacles once held at The Savoy, these occasions showcase stunning gowns, and present 10 to 12 looks from Suzie’s eagerly awaited collection. In essence, high fashion is paired with high tea, resulting in a designer dream that’s evocative of the hotel’s world-famous style affiliations, patronage and heritage. “We aim to make this a completely unique, one-off experience, as very few people have the chance to attend a Paris couture show, or get that close to a one-of-a-kind couture gown,” continues Suzie. “We’re creating an opportunity for guests to have a front-row seat, where they can almost touch the pieces and see how they
move in the incredible environment of the
the Thames Foyer, and tasting the exquisite,
“Within our pieces, we use exclusively
world-renowned éclairs,” Suzie insists. “The
Swarovski crystals, each individually
Indeed, The Savoy’s popular afternoon
attention to detail that goes into their service,
hand-knotted to ensure the highest finish,”
tea lounge was the perfect setting for Suzie
from the way they address the guests, down
explains Suzie. “Many of our gowns feature
to strut her stuff. Upon arrival, guests can
to the pocket watches within the servers’
tens of thousands of hand-knotted Swarovski
enjoy a welcome cocktail, accompanied
uniforms, is the same level of detail and
crystals. We’re currently in the process of
by a selection of delectable sandwiches,
precision that goes into our gowns.”
creating our next ‘showstopper’ piece, which
cakes, scones and éclairs, decorated with
Highlight dresses include an emerald feather
will feature over 400 individually hand-
intricate sketches of Suzie’s designs. With
gown, which features a corseted sweetheart
embellished red feather flowers. We’re so
its magnificent glass-domed atrium, the
neckline with over 40,000 hand-sewn
excited to show this piece in the upcoming
Thames Foyer makes for an enchanting
emerald Nagoire flat feathers. Elsewhere,
months at The Savoy!
another number is made with 27,000
“‘The Savoy experience’ is what we would
“It’s our aim to create pieces where even
Swarovski crystals, while a cream pearl
the untrained eye is able to recognise
love our clients to witness and experience
bridal gown boasts hand-appliquéd French
the level of skill and craftsmanship that
first-hand; to be able to see our presentation
corded lace, and more than 60,000 hand
has gone into the gowns. I would love
of gowns, while enjoying high tea within
embellished Swarovski pearls and crystals.
for the guests to appreciate the time and meticulous attention to detail that goes into each one of our gowns.”
AFTERNOON TEA IN THE THAMES FOYER
Of course, Suzie isn’t the first designer whose latest and greatest frocks have made their debuts at The Savoy. Today, she follows in the footsteps of the legendary Christian Dior, who displayed his second collection at the hotel in autumn 1947. Archive footage inspired the choreography of Suzie’s shows, as models were taught to walk in the fashion of their classic salon predecessors. “The incredible fashion history of the hotel played a huge part in the inspiration behind the event,” she reflects. “Our main aim was to stay true to this tradition as much as we could. The showcase of Christian Dior’s couture gowns was received with such acclaim in
CHRISTIAN DIOR WITH MODELS IN 1950
London that it caught the eye of The
sumptuous feast for all the senses, be it
Queen Mother, and we would love
tucking into an indulgent afternoon tea, or
to think that our events may one day
taking in the most recent looks and trends
become as aspirational.”
from Suzie’s range. But whether it’s the
In honour of the past, Suzie built
food or the fashion, one thing that’s certain
on the characters of several 1950s
is that these in-vogue, on-trend affairs will
stars, such as Audrey Hepburn and
continue to mark unmissable dates on any
Marilyn Monroe, studying their
facial expressions, posture and body
“Our ultimate dream is to create a
language to recreate the same level of
‘go-to’ destination, and an aspirational
elegance. The glitz and glam of the era
presentation that can be the setting for
is captured further through the music
celebrities, press, future fashionistas and
of a unique ‘Salon Couture sound’,
aspiring models to attend each month,”
which mixes Monroe with Sinatra to
Suzie concludes. “We aim to maintain
complement the ambience.
and further develop the exclusivity and
“This style of modelling beautifully emphasises the detail of the pieces, and
luxuriousness of the occasion. “It’s such an honour to have the
the way the fabric falls and moves against
opportunity to work with the incredible
the skin, accentuating the luxuriousness of
Savoy. The hotel has so much history
the presentation and its setting,” considers
and provides me with such inspiration
Suzie. “Mixes relating back to Joe Gilmore,
for the gowns; its stunning architecture
the lead barman at The Savoy’s American
and ornate decor is the perfect setting to
Bar from 1940 to 1976, are created by DJ
showcase the glamour of high fashion.
Munro and saxophonist Simon Green, who
I’m so excited to continue experimenting
have collaboratively created the exclusive
with new fabrics and techniques to
‘Salon Couture sound’.”
create new pieces to show, month on
With all these elements in place, visitors and guests can look forward to a
month, which will hopefully then inspire others in the future.”
Taking place on the first Wednesday of every month at 5.30pm, Salon Couture High Tea is priced at £58 and includes a welcome cocktail, created by American Bar head bartender Erik Lorincz. To find out more about Suzie Turner, visit www.suzieturner.com
ROAST RIB OF SCOTTISH BEEF WITH ROAST POTATOES, SAVOY CABBAGE, YORKSHIRE PUDDING & HORSERADISH
“WE HAVE TO KEEP AN ELEMENT OF THE
Opened nearly 200 years ago, Simpson’s-in-the-Strand has retained much of its original charm, character and charisma – which is just the way master cook Gerry Rae likes it. We catch up with the Scottish chef about why new isn’t always better, and the importance of mixing tradition with innovation
here can be no finer dining establishment
roast beef and treacle sponge, with a couple of
than Simpson’s-in-the-Strand for a true
bottles of big, heavy Burgundies.”
taste of all that’s best in British cuisine. As
Not exactly the seasonal ethos one might expect
one of London’s most historic culinary landmarks,
nowadays, but a visit to Simpson’s wouldn’t be
the iconic eatery has been offering classic dishes
the same without all the trimmings, whatever the
to delighted patrons for over 185 years, ever since
weather. Indeed, Gerry’s learned the hard way
it opened its doors as chess club and coffee house
that a degree of predictability is key to getting the
The Grand Cigar Divan, in 1828.
formula right in a place like this; after all, it wasn’t
Only the very best ingredients are used in a ‘bill of fare’ that encompasses such favourites as roast
so long ago when it resembled more of a private members’ club than a Sunday lunch hotspot.
saddle of lamb and steak and kidney pie. Today,
“Margaret Thatcher had been in power for six
the man behind the meals is Glaswegian master
years before women were allowed in the dining
cook Gerry Rae, who’s honoured the restaurant’s
room in 1985," he continues. “But the food has to
famous tradition of tableside roast beef carving for
be old-fashioned, because people come for what
the past decade, on original silver-domed trolleys,
they know. In the beginning, people complained
dating back as far as Simpson’s itself.
when we started putting garlic and thyme on the
“Beef Wellington is still one of our bestsellers, and has been on the menu since I’ve been here,” he
roast potatoes.” Once known as the ‘home of chess’, Simpson’s
says. “The hardest part is keeping the consistency.
has welcomed its fair share of renowned figures
Simpson’s has a lot of history, so it can be 120
over the years, including Howard Staunton, the
degrees outside in the middle of summer, and
first English world chess champion. In fact, the
people will still come in and order lobster soup,
game was the basis for the distinguished diner’s
MEETCUISINE THE TEAM
now legendary custom of wheeling out large joints of meat directly to guests’ tables, so as not to disturb players while contemplating their next move. Other celebrated names like Charles Dickens, George Bernard Shaw and Sir Arthur
“It can be 120 degrees outside
‘menu’, and ‘master cook’
in the middle of summer, and
emphasise the quintessentially
instead of ‘executive chef’,
people will still come in and
British identity of Simpson’s,
order lobster soup, roast beef
to this day.
and treacle sponge, with a couple of bottles of big,
Conan Doyle have all likewise been regulars, along with
Benjamin Disraeli and William
which remains firmly intact “Everything on the menu is sourced within the UK,” Gerry reveals. “The original owner did away with French terminology. The only thing that wasn’t done away with
Gladstone. Much like the rest of The Savoy,
was the wine list, because 180 years ago,
Simpson’s is shrouded in heritage that harks back
English wines weren’t on the up so much.
centuries – a USP that Gerry has well and truly
Nowadays, English white and sparkling wines
are very good, but we don’t have the heat for
“There’s loads of history in here,” he explains. “We get quite a lot of tourists now, because they like
the reds yet, so we still do a lot of other wines.” Speaking of which, the Knight’s Bar, also housed
the theatrics of the carvers in their big white hats.
in Simpson’s, serves both contemporary and
I went back through a lot of the old menus and
conventional tipples, accompanied by light bar
started cooking dishes from the 1900s and 1800s.
food, from barbecue pork spare ribs, to truffle risotto
We took it right back to basics, retraining everybody
balls, making it a popular haunt for pre-Savoy
in the kitchen up to a consistent standard.”
Theatregoers. When describing the comfortable Art
Carrying on the legacy of one of his earliest predecessors, Gerry continues to maintain a focus on sourcing produce that’s strictly home-grown in the UK. Similarly, terms like ‘bill of fare’ rather than
Deco space, Gerry insists: “If people could get away with smoking cigars up there, they would.” But perhaps the biggest pull of all for visitors is the carving master classes, which, under Gerry’s
FOOD & DRINK
expert guidance, invite aspiring roasters to perfect
“We change the menu four times a year,” Gerry
the lost art of slicing up a variety of joints. Whether
adds. “During the summer months, we keep it light
it’s a chicken, loin of pork, leg of lamb or rib of
and fresh by using a lot more fish, because it’s a
beef, the aim is to equip home cooks with the
different clientele. We get a lot more tourists, so
necessary tools they need to boost their confidence
have to lighten the food up and design the menu
in the kitchen.
around them, but we also have to keep an element
“It’s not just about carving – we take the whole
of the classics. Of our food sales, 55% still comes
ethos of how easy it is to get a Sunday lunch
from the beef trolley, as that’s what Simpson’s was
together,” declares Gerry. “Personally, I don’t think
designed as, and what people come for.”
enough people sit down together as a family and
To that end, it’s telling that Simpson’s has seen
eat nowadays. They panic about Sunday lunch and
so much repeat business and client retention in
how to go about it, thinking there’s too much to do
its lifetime; an enduring sentiment that, as long
and that they can’t do it, so we show them how to
as it holds on to its essence and heart, will no
cook, carve, prepare and organise. It’s all to do
doubt be the case for another 200 years to come.
with how to cook it, because if it’s not done right,
Considering that some of the staff have been going
it’s much harder to carve.”
strong for three decades, they’re still delivering a
As for the décor, a listed, oak-panelled interior
consistent level of quality service even now.
has left Simpson’s looking much as it did almost
“We get a lot of return clientele, who like to
two centuries ago. Which isn’t to say, of course,
see the same faces and be served by the same
that it feels in any way tired or outdated; far from
people,” concludes Gerry. “A lot of places in
it, as customers have come to expect and embrace
London are now stepping back to go forward.”
the bygone glamour for which it’s known. And with rotating gourmet options available throughout the year, there’s always something for everyone.
The restless light As romantic as she is historic, Venice never fails to captivate all who gaze upon her, such is her reputation as the Queen of the Adriatic. Author and journalist Adam Jacot de Boinod pays a visit to the Floating City, where he reﬂects on her enchanting legacy as a haven for ʻromantics and escapistsʼ
defy anyone who enters Venice, be it by train,
important to maintain a sense of the expansive lagoon.
bus or boat, not to be transfixed by the sudden
I had a day trip on Lagunalonga (www.lagunalonga.com).
cinematic entry into a foregone world. No cars
Francesco, the charismatic de Niro lookalike skipper, was
– just boats, water and imposingly beautiful
dedicated to giving me the day I wanted, which was to
buildings. All worldly concerns disappear as I
see the outer islands of Burano (renowned for its lace),
take part on this historical stage, and it’s always with a
Murano (its glass) and Torcello (the earliest and most
wistful heart that I depart.
remote church, and of the settlements).
Four nights is a good length. Don’t try and take in
While steeped in history, enjoyably for all, Venice is
everything, as you won’t manage; it’s very rich visually,
actually visually highly progressive, staging artistic and
and there’s always more to see. It’s a holiday for the
architectural biennales that are the envy and forums of
eye, as it incessantly spots what it can in a neck-straining
the creative world. These are staged in the gardens, a
panorama. No one writes about Venice more insightfully
healthy walk north of St Mark’s.
than Jan Morris in her book The Stones of Venice, and no guidebook can better that of Mitchell Beazley. Venice grew to power in the divide between East
I’ve been to Venice dozens of times, whenever possible choosing to spend time on the Giudecca, as it’s cut off from the two main islands, with only the Redentore
and West, a unique circumstance that overwhelmingly
church in the guidebooks. It’s where to be among the
conditioned her art. At first, she was drawn naturally
Venetians going about their daily lives; Michelangelo
towards the East, as the stronger culture; but then, with
spent three years exiled on the island from 1529.
the decline and eclipse of Byzantium, Venice acquired
The Giudecca has two churches designed by Palladio,
extensive mainland territory, towards the West. For a
which appear incommunicado with San Giorgio and
thousand years, the city kept her independence under
the Salute. It’s as though their respective statues are
an unbroken line of doges, only to be upended by
conversing with each other on an altogether higher
Napoleon, who at least acknowledged that the Piazzo St
plane. If I spot a green church door open, I seize the
Marco resembled the grandest drawing room in Europe.
moment to look inside, as they’re often shut. Here,
The thing to do is to combine the central sights with the
congregations are still numerous, as are the monks and
local outer parishes. It’s easy to get claustrophobic, so it’s
clerics walking throughout the city. I often attend one of
52 \ 42
the many evening classical music performances inside (even in
The lack of car combustion allows for the unique quality of
the Pieta, where Vivaldi taught). As a true romantic, I replenish
a city, without permanent noise. The lapping ripples of the
my soul by attending the midnight mass on Christmas Eve in St
encroaching water, invasive at aqua alta (high tide), remind
Mark’s Basilica, where the ‘smells and bells’ of Catholicism fuse
one of the ultimate fragility of the lagoon, while the sound of a
with the Byzantine gilded décor, the darkness alleviated only by
barcarola (gondolier’s song) lulls one yet again.
lanterns and candles.
At night, the serene sight (the Venetian empire’s sobriquet is
I prefer to keep away from the main yellow-arrowed route
‘La Serenissima’) of the domes and bell-towers (campanile) lit
linking the station, the Rialto Bridge and St Mark’s piazza. I got
up (along with their daytime muffled chiming) affords a religious
myself a Venezaia Unica city pass for the vaporettos to ease my
profile to all. Take a vaporetto in the evening up and down the
daily trips about the city. I like the Campo San Polo, the largest
Grand Canal, and only then can one see the grand splendour
of the city’s squares (the St Marco one is a piazza), and watch
of the gilded ceilings and expansive rooms of the opulent
children kick footballs irreverently against the church walls. I eat
palazzos. Truly transfixing!
with the locals at the Madonna by the Rialto, which has fresh crab and is close to the food market, where seagulls are shooed
Adam Jacot de Boinod worked on the first series of QI, the
away by the fishmongers.
BBC series presented by Stephen Fry, and is the author of The
The Venetians are similar to the Cornish – rugged, seafaring,
Meaning of Tingo, published by Penguin Press.
separatist and mercantile, putting up with tourists, if only for their spending. It’s easy to forget the harsh ambition and blood spilled to make this city the empire it was, and the aesthetic delight it remains. Monet and Turner were drawn to the restless light, enhanced
by the blues of the water and sky; Lord Byron swam across the
Adam travelled with Classic Collection Holidays
Grand Canal with manly intent; and romantics and escapists
(0800 294 9323; www.classic-collection.co.uk),
all belong to this unique city. For many, the mysticism of the weather and light is intoxicating; for some, there’s the sense of
which features a selection of the finest-quality hotels in Italy.
foreboding, as seen in the film Don’t Look Now.
DINING ON CLOUD NINE Forget the questionable in-flight meals at 40,000 feet – for clients of specialist suppliers of luxury amenities for private jets, Dahlgren Duck & Associates, it’s all about supping in style at altitude. Jane Stanbury finds out how luxury brands and amenities help tailor-make a bespoke experience in the air
t’s well-known that you eat with much more than just your taste buds. The way in which food is presented plays a major part in our eating satisfaction. In fact, a recent study from Oxford
University showed that the colour of a plate may affect how you eat, and the weight of cutlery may change your thoughts about the taste of a dish. Flavour is also affected by altitude, so food presentation becomes even more important when dining in the air. The world’s elite jet owners recognise this, and turn to US-based Dahlgren Duck & Associates to enhance their dining experience. For over 30 years, DDA has been detailing
However, the jewel in the crown of DDA’s
what clients need, and can go straight to the
and editing the cabin dining environment.
services is its ability to create china, crystal
right source of inspiration.” At the same time,
The company provides the world’s finest
and flatware collections that are truly unique.
the items need to be functional and fit with
crystal, china, flatware, linens and amenities,
The bespoke design division comprises
aviation regulations, which adds several new
from leading luxury design brands, to the
a one-of-a-kind network of craftsmen
layers to the complexity of design.
international private aviation sector.
and suppliers, which collaborates with a
“Quite often, we have to seek out a specific
dedicated project team to generate what
expert, and in some cases, there may be only
Scott calls the ‘ungoogleable’.
one person in the world with the capabilities
“We like to think of ourselves as our clients’ strategic partner in creating an on-board lifestyle and image,” says CEO
“The interior of our customers’ aircraft
to produce what we need,” Scott says. The
Scott Ritter. “For businesses, it allows
is a very personal space, so we plan
resulting items can be found on aircraft used
them to extend their corporate image
and work with the intention of enriching
by royalty, heads of state, governments,
through to the aircraft, and for private
their experience through provision of
celebrities and the truly elite.
owners, it adds their own personal touch
breathtakingly stunning pieces,” he explains.
to their on-board experience.” DDA
“We literally produce items that will be
of the one percent”, insists Scott, adding
has such strong and long relationships
displayed in museums one day.”
that, once customers have received their
“Our clients really are the one percent
with eminent design houses that they’re
Past projects have included the design
tailor-made aircraft pieces, they’re so delighted
willing to customise their products for the
and creation of a Champagne flute that lit
that they’ll often ask to recreate the look across
up to showcase the bubbles as an aircraft
their palace, yacht, private residence, and
“They allow us to integrate a logo, family
took its maiden flight; a dinner service
even executive boardroom. And the price for
crest, or even the owner’s initials into their
that incorporated mother of pearl inlay
creating these wondrous pieces?
products,” Scott continues. “They trust us to
throughout; and a silver flatware service that
add style to their established designs, and
was handcrafted to incorporate a stirrup
consequently there’s no fixed price tag,
that’s important when you’re a leading
design, inlaid with Lapis Lazuli. To produce
plus I would be breaking our strict code
such items requires deep knowledge,
of discretion if I was to reveal them,” Scott
imagination and obsessive attention to detail.
concludes with a smile. “For many, the shared
“Every collection is different, and
“Sometimes a customer will come to us
experience with their family and friends on
with a very specific idea,” adds Scott. “One
board is what they appreciate most. Those
client chose to emulate the pattern of a shell
precious moments are priceless.”
they found on a beach; another was one of three brothers who wanted to showcase their fraternity through his dinner service. This
Head to www.dahlgrenduck.com for
resulted in the creation of triangular plates
further information on the services offered
and crystal stems.
by DDA. Jane is a principal at UK-based
“Others will come with very broad
aviation consultancy Emerald Media, which
specifications, which require us to research,
specialises in business aviation with an
design and reiterate concepts. Our concept
international client base. To find out more,
designers are intuitive; they instinctively know
“IN OUR DIGITAL WORLD, PEOPLE ARE LOOKING FOR PERMANENCE…” As the world's premier rare stamps and luxury collectibles merchant since 1856, Stanley Gibbons in the Strand holds the Royal Warrant for services to philately. Managing director of investments, Keith Heddle, tells us why stamps can be a tangible asset and a potentially lucrative opportunity to diversify your portfolio
So, Keith, when did you get involved
They’re markers in history and socio-
Have you noticed many trends on
at Stanley Gibbons?
economic development, and the world’s
the investing side in recent years?
I joined the business in mid-2009, possibly
first stamp, the Penny Black, launched a
We’re starting to see the growth of the
at the perfect time, because the CEO had
global communication revolution in 1840.
global middle class, increasing affluence
launched a fledgling investment division a
across the world, and a more outward
few years earlier, and the global financial
How have you become such a
looking and culturally sophisticated
crash was driving investors to look at
market leader since 1856?
consumer. People are looking at their
alternative options. Rare stamps, in the
Stanley Gibbons is rich in expertise. We’ve
own history and heritage, and that of the
best condition, have increasingly started to
modernised the building and the fabric of
countries they have a connection with, so
feature in investment portfolios since then
it has changed, but the expertise is almost
the demand for the top stamps is growing
– not just in Britain, but across the world; it
woven into the DNA of the people who work
on an international basis, whereas the
truly is a global market.
here, as well as the building itself, it seems.
supply, of course, is finite.
What they don’t know about rare stamps What makes stamps so valuable as
isn’t worth writing on the back of one.
In what ways has the internet made an impact?
You’ve got basic supply/demand
Which stamp should potential
People are starting, little by little, to
economics of a finite asset; you can’t
investors look out for?
understand the romance of stamps. We’ve
print any more Penny Blacks or Two Penny
Possibly the most iconic is the Penny
seen a turn towards tangibility, particularly
Blues, and you’ve still got a collector base.
Black, because it was the world’s first. The
nowadays. In our digital world, people
This is becoming more international, with
amazing thing about it is that it launched
are looking for permanence. Everything is
a slow, steady flow of more sophisticated
one of the biggest communication and
disposable, but there’s this little sense of
investors, as well as affluent collectors.
commercial revolutions the world has ever
wanting to go back to something that has
seen. It had the same impact then as
held its value and has a historical context.
The interesting thing about stamps is that, once you dig below the surface
the internet does now. At the top end,
and appreciate that thinking of them as
unused Penny Blacks, in blocks that
investing with Stanley Gibbons, in that,
‘paper, ink and glue’ is like thinking of
have been cut beautifully, can sell
when you invest, you actually buy a
fine wine as ‘old grape juice and ethanol’,
for £250,000 and upwards,
carefully authenticated selection of rare
you realise that lots of them have a
because they have that historical
heritage assets. The internet has brought
backstory and historical resonance.
resonance and rarity.
greater transparency and knowledge to
That’s also one of the beauties about
consumers, and has brought our clients
Where’s it all heading going forward?
making ourselves as accessible
in too, so they don’t have to visit us in the
It’s still an interesting challenge to raise
as possible. We’re always open to
Strand, but can engage with us remotely.
the flag above the parapet in an incredibly
a discussion at our offices in the
noisy, cluttered world and say that stamps
Strand, in Hong Kong, or in the
Why invest in stamps over, say, fine
could possibly be a good investment.
Channel Islands – and a good
wines or classic cars?
If you’re looking at long-term capital
place to start is by visiting
They’re not the same as your Ferrari,
appreciation and have the right time
football club or super yacht – they act as
horizon and portfolio balance, they can
a quiet, sophisticated wealth. It’s almost
be an interesting alternative.
a non-flashy flashing of wealth and
To get noticed among the noise of all
Stanley Gibbons 399 Strand (opposite The Savoy)
sophistication. The market is opaque,
the moneymaking potential, we have
London WC2R 0LX
and these tend to be very long-term
to go about it in a ‘quiet wealth’ sort of
0845 026 7170
investments. We’re seeing people use
way, letting people know we’re here, and
them as intra-generational ‘legacy’ investments, but increasingly, we’re also seeing people use them for wealth preservation, as well as having that sense of owning something quiet and glorious. Many people do both. So, it’s more of a slow-burner, then… We have to be incredibly patient, because we’re not selling an obvious product, so it’s all about moving to a client’s rhythms. From an investment perspective, we’re trying to be as robust and transparent as we can. Every investment stamp has a lifetime guarantee of authenticity, which is important because of the longevity of some of these portfolios, and the fact that some of them are being built on as ‘legacy’ investments. And if a stamp turns out not to be the genuine article? Should there be any question around it, clients can come and get their money back; it’s those little things that help add to client reassurance. They expect it from a 160-year-old business that holds the Royal Warrant for services to philately, so there’s that sense of trust and reassurance that comes with the territory.
391 STRAND STANLEY GIBBONS PRIOR TO THE SHORT MOVE TO 399 STRAND IN 1981
Toasting in a
WINTER WONDERLAND With the season of festive frivolity almost upon us, the art of entertaining will soon be taking on an enchanting tone and atmosphere. To help you create those magical moments this Christmas, The Savoy’s Bruce Russell shares some of his top tips for making your winter soirées truly unforgettable
lthough spring and summer are synonymous with weddings and seasonal entertaining, autumn and winter can also lend themselves beautifully to some
spectacular occasions. The key is to embrace the changing colours and mood of the season, and tailor the dress and décor accordingly. Whether you’re planning a glamorous cocktail party, a decadent dinner, or perhaps a romantic, snowy winter wedding, Christmas is the perfect time to pull out all the stops and really revel in the virtuosity of entertaining. From intimate cocktail parties in the Royal Suite and semi-private dinners at Kaspar’s, to a grand affair in the Lancaster Ballroom, The Savoy provides the perfect backdrop for the ultimate festive fun. And why not ask the American Bar to curate some bespoke cocktails – either one that’s served all night, or perhaps a series of ‘mini-cocktails’, where each course has its own accompaniment: one cocktail for canapés, another with bowl food, and then a mini espresso martini to accompany desserts? A great many brides choose The Savoy for that quintessential, iconic London wedding, and a dusting of autumnal leaves, or even a sprinkling of glistening snow, only serves to heighten the sense of occasion. London is a beautifully picturesque city – arguably even more so during the winter months, providing a stunning backdrop for photographs. This time of year lends itself to all manner of fun creative license when it comes to dressing and décor. No need to opt for a frosty palette of silvers, stark lights and cool blue tones; why not warm up your winter wonderland with amber lighting, richer metallics and bold bursts of colour – dark purples, deep pinks and rich reds, which add a more opulent tone? The art of ‘tablescaping’ very much comes into its own
in winter months. Seek to create a veritable feast for all the senses! Introduce a selection of textures, such as beautiful floral blooms, fabrics, crystals and other adornments, which can offer variations in shape and
BY BRUCE RUSSELL
height, adding depth and perspective to tables. As winter weddings and social occasions tend to be more formal – black tie; soft velvety fabrics; rich colours – why not reflect this in the decorative detail? Wraps and shawls not only look wonderful on the shoulders, but also draped around the space itself. The likes of faux fur, velvet and cashmere can be strategically deployed throughout, as stage drapes, table linen, or as part of accent pillows for any lounge furniture. And if it’s far too cold outside (or you lack outside space), why not welcome winter indoors with an ice bar as a sparkling standout centrepiece, serving perfectly chilled drinks to guests, or incorporated into some of the food stations?
This time of year lends itself to all manner of fun creative license when it comes to dressing and décor. No need to opt for a frosty palette of silvers, stark lights and cool blue tones; why not warm up your winter wonderland with amber lighting, richer metallics and bold bursts of colour Remember that lighting is of vital consideration at this time of year, as the nights draw in and darkness falls. Perimeter lighting works well, supplemented as needs be by candlelight. This will add a warm glow, which in turn adds to the ambience, and the Ballroom in particular looks spectacular when bathed in rich amber. Lower light levels will of course have an impact on any photography. Reportage photos will need to be well-lit, and if there are any set-piece shots, then make sure you have a dedicated space prepared. The Savoy’s chefs and culinary teams know no bounds
when it comes to fine dining, and autumn and winter is
no exception. Indulge in larger portions, richer flavours and slightly more robust cuisine; a personal favourite is The Savoy’s beef Wellington with a rich port sauce, while their vegetarian version is equally mouth-watering. Don’t hold back – after all, Christmas is the season of excess, extravagance and indulgence! Your choice of Christmas ‘tipple’ always sets the tone for the celebrations – flutes of crisp Champagne, warming BY BRUCE RUSSELL
glasses of red, or cocktails with wintry notes of rum or whiskey, spiced up with pomegranate, winter berries or cinnamon, all give a seasonal edge. We’re fortunate to have such an experienced and enterprising team at The Savoy; our culinary creators are constantly inventing new drinks and fresh experiences for guests, and love to add a
personal touch where possible. Creativity at its best!
And now that the main part of the party is planned, it’s time to focus on how to dress to impress. For me, winter is all about layers, so why not look to incorporate removable elements to the chosen outfit, such as sleeves or skirts, both of which are particularly popular for brides tying the knot at this time of year? And as a guest, you can really go to town on your outfit during the winter months – long dresses topped with exquisite jackets to keep out the chill, hats, gloves and jewels. This is a great season to showcase coloured stones and those decadent cocktail rings!
WINTER WEDDING WISH LIST Here are some inspirational gift ideas from luxury wedding list and gift registry company Blue Ribbon There’s something very special about winter weddings; they
Here to guide us through the world of luxury gifting are the
seem to possess an extra magic quality. We’ve asked our
founders of Blue Ribbon, Zsofia Jamieson and Esther Rulli…
wedding gift service experts at Blue Ribbon to help us put
"Putting together your wedding gift list according to the season of your wedding is a really creative and fun way to go about it.
together the perfect winter wedding gift list. Blue Ribbon’s exclusive edit for The Savoy can be viewed in
We’ve picked the most exciting, beautiful and chic pieces from
The Landing Room, a recently unveiled private lounge, where
the word’s top 100 homeware brands to create the ultimate
clients are welcomed to discuss the finer details of their event.
winter wedding wish list for The Savoy’s clients."
White porcelain is a classic, time-honoured wedding gift. For a modern take on the traditional dinnerware set, choose pieces with interesting textures, or touches of gold or platinum, and break up the tablescape with unusually-shaped bowls and knife rests. To make your dinnerware truly special, we suggest having your monogram painted on, for a one-of-a-kind set.
Juicers are a modern wedding gift list must-have, and never more so than in the winter, when we must take particularly good care of ourselves, and of our spouses! One of the industry leaders, Omega juicers, effectively preserves enzymes and nutrients, vital for our wellbeing. The juicers come in several finishes; here, we picked one in winter white.
COLOURED GLASS Winter is the time to light up a fire and enjoy a glass of wine. Add a touch of colour to a winter evening indoors; we suggest using these wonderful, vividly hued crystal glasses from Waterford, which will never go unnoticed.
CANDLES Candles are a must-have for a romantic autumnal dinner, and who does romance better than the French? Infuse your evening with the exquisite perfume of these beautiful Raynaud Tresor candles, presented in a stylish porcelain candle pot.
CASHMERE THROW Cold weather calls for a luxurious, cosy cashmere throw, and Oyuna makes some of the best cashmere in the world, inspired by their Mongolian roots. Warm, earthy colours of Oyuna’s cashmere add a touch of elegance to any decor.
We’ve saved the most special suggestion until last: the Eiderdown duvet is a truly extraordinary piece, filled with 100% Icelandic eiderdown, which is gently washed and sorted by hand in Switzerland. The duvet casing is made from mulberry silk, a particularly fine and soft wild silk. The result is a wonderfully light and soft duvet, providing incomparable warmth and comfort.
MONOCHROME The most stylish winter palette, year after year, is monochrome, with a touch of gold. One of our hidden gems is Sieger by Furstenberg porcelain – the quality of porcelain is superb and the designs are modern, striking and easy to dress up or down, which makes them suitable for any occasion.
Blue Ribbon Company, a luxury multi-brand homeware retailer, was
showcases carefully curated must-haves from brands such as Christofle,
established to help style-conscious customers create their dream
Baccarat, Frette, Pratesi, Missoni and Ralph Lauren.
homes. Blue Ribbon brings its clients an exclusive selection of timeless classics and unique, hard-to-find gifts from over 100 contemporary
designers and legendary brands. From fine linens and heritage
silverware, to kitchenware of the highest quality, the exclusive collection
Follow Blue Ribbon @blueribboncompany and blueribbonco/
01 \ 54
“ IT’S NEVER GOING TO BE GROUNDHOG DAY…” In hospitality, you’re generally kept on your toes at all times – a sentiment perhaps few people can appreciate quite as acutely as director of guest services Kelly Rimmer. Frederick Latty hears how she built an exclusive experience from scratch, and finds out what the life of a Savoy VIP looks like from an insider's perspective
veryone who passes through
for her personable, nurturing attitude towards clients;
The Savoy’s doors is special,
so much so, in fact, that her current role didn’t even
and treated with the utmost care
exist before it was offered to her.
and attention. For a select few,
“At the start of 2016, the executive team wanted to
however, its guest services team
put a lot more emphasis on our VIP and high-return
goes above and beyond to make
guests,” she says. “We’d never had that position or
the hotel a veritable home from home. Led by director
department within the hotel, so we’ve created it from
Kelly Rimmer, this small group is responsible for the
scratch, which has been a huge challenge. I take it
needs of returning, long-stay and VIP visitors, who
as a lovely compliment that they offered me the
require even more personal attention.
With 28 years’ experience behind her, Kelly started
Getting the ball rolling as recently as May of the
her journey in the iconic venue as beauty and fitness
same year, Kelly now works closely with The Savoy’s
manager in September 2013. Since then, she’s
concierge, butlers and reservations to ensure that its
transformed its spa department, and been recognised
familiar faces want for nothing from the moment they
make their booking. The first step is
abroad, accommodating reservations in
in a River View Suite, right down to the
building a profile of what each
a fully-booked Kaspar’s or Thames Foyer,
rugs and carpets. Needless to say, a great
patron will want ahead of time, so
ordering off-menu, or mixing unique
deal of flexibility is required for the job.
that everything can be set up just
cocktails with the hotel’s bartenders.
so for when they arrive. “We all come together so that we can
“We’re their point of contact, so they know
“Last-minute bookings are always the hardest, or when people request
they can pick up the phone or email us at
specific brands and products that aren’t
create this amazing experience for the
any time, and we’ll always be there,” Kelly
available in the UK,” adds Kelly. “We
guests,” continues Kelly. “Every need is
explains. “It’s about building relationships
have to try and get them from anywhere
catered for before they get to the hotel,
with these guests, so unless it’s illegal, ‘no’
and everywhere, even if we need to
so that they walk into a home from
is never in our vocabulary. We joke with
make calls to colleagues in the US in
home. We want them to feel relaxed and
guests when we say that, which makes them
order to get certain items sent over.
comfortable, so if that means changing
laugh, but it’s never a ‘no’, because we’ll
But we always seem to find them, no
the whole minibar to their preferences,
always find a way somehow.”
then that’s what we’ll do.”
This can-do attitude has certainly
Naturally, Kelly has encountered her
provided Kelly with some memorable
fair share of high-profile figures in her
and theatre reservations, nothing is too
stories to tell. Her most challenging
time. From celebrities to royalty, she’s
much trouble. It’s down to Kelly to pull
requests to date have included
met all the big names, but maintains that
as many strings as possible to get her
orchestrating a full-scale cricket match for
dealing with the rich and famous isn’t
customers anything and everything they
a high-powered CEO’s son, as well as
any different; on the contrary, it’s even
wish; whether it’s sourcing amenities from
completely changing every stick of furniture
simpler, as the sprawling entourages
From transport arrangements to dinner
that A-listers tend to travel with stand to
highly effective spies, who are able to pick
saying that, above all else, discretion
make her life just that little bit easier on
up and report back on anything that may
is a top priority. Kelly will only share
or may not be to someone’s liking, and
information with specific colleagues
tailoring their rooms accordingly, before
who need to know, and sometimes
they even have to ask.
not at all, depending on the personal
“All of our guests are treated the same; it doesn’t matter whether they’re royalty or a celebrity,” she insists.
Personalising suites comes as
“Celebrities are easy, because there
standard, be it through specific
are so many people attached to them,
fragrances, flowers or other home
who give us everything we need. We
comforts. But of course, it goes without
and potentially sensitive nature of the requirement. Indeed, such a bespoke approach has meant that she’s had to do away with
check in on them every day to make sure everything’s alright, or if there’s anything else they need.” As soon as a new arrival touches down, a seamless operation ensues. Upon being greeted at the door rather than reception (a crucial distinction), they’re introduced to their own personal butler, who looks after their day-to-day needs. Another imperative factor is determining ETAs, so as to time everything perfectly, and guarantee that it all runs like clockwork. During residencies, it’s important for Kelly to find the time to sit down for a catch-up over a drink or a coffee, getting to know people’s preferences, habits, routines and idiosyncrasies. Housekeeping make for
procedures altogether, as she’s never
assisting with personal shopping and
able to predict what any one itinerary
shipping items out to their native
will entail. Schedules and timetables are
countries, or storing purchases safely at
meticulously prepared in advance, but in
the hotel for next time. She’s also keen
a transient position like hers, she needs
to make sure her staff cultivates similar
to remain fluid at all times – which is
rapports, so as to deliver consistency
exactly the way she likes it, and what she
across the board.
set out to accomplish all along.
“Communication between all
“None of our emails are in a
departments is key to getting it right,
template format; everything is
whether it’s pre-arrival, during a stay,
personal,” she states. “That’s what I
or post-departure,” she professes. “You
wanted to build with the guest services
have to love people and be a warm,
– a very personal experience. We build
nurturing character to be successful. It’s
relationships with the guests and get to know their terminology, so that we know how to act and behave with them. That’s where we have to try and judge and read our guests; there’s a lot of mindreading.” Long-term residents can make themselves at home from anywhere between seven weeks and six months, so an everyday shorthand is naturally developed, but so too is gauging body language, treating everyone as individuals, and determining the nature of their time at The Savoy. Much like the butlers, there’s a fine balance for Kelly to strike between familiarity and professionalism.
“We all come together so that we can create this amazing experience for the guests. Every need is catered for before they get to the hotel, so that they walk into a home from home”
“I’ve always had a work rule of
about making people feel appreciated, and having that warm openness about you. It really is home here for long-stay guests, so we have to make sure every preference is catered for, which is what we’re here to do.” With a view of extending her expertise to cover all 267 rooms and suites over the coming years, Kelly has high hopes for a bright future in creating ‘the perfect experience’ for anyone and everyone who picks The Savoy as their London destination of choice. But come what may, one thing that’s certain is that there’s never a dull moment, and she’ll never get tired of coming to work. “If you don’t aim high, there’s no challenge,” she concludes. “It’s
remaining professional at all times,” she
stepping stones at the moment, but if
reveals. “When you get to know people,
we get this right, the team will grow.
you know from experience what your
Every single one of our guests’ requests
boundaries are and not to cross them;
is different, but the main thing is that
that’s always a key element of success
a stint, as it means she must be doing
it’s important to them to make their
in our roles. I was taught to call people
stay perfect. That’s one of the great
‘Mr’, ‘Mrs’, ‘Sir’ or ‘Lady’, until they
“If there’s a guest phoning every
challenges about the role.
say otherwise. If that’s the way a guest
few minutes for items or services, you
“It’s a huge honour and privilege
wants it to be, you have to honour that,
haven’t done your job properly,” she
to be one of the faces of The Savoy.
but you’d never become too familiar.”
declares. “The most rewarding part is
When you walk into a beautiful,
having guests who don’t have to ask for
iconic building like this every day,
to juggle for international jetsetters,
anything when they’re here. You know
it’s not a hardship coming to work.
it’s far from uncommon for Kelly to
you’ve succeeded in doing everything
I love doing what I do, and you
work around the clock, often getting
for them when they’re quiet throughout
can see in everyone’s faces here
in as early as 4am. She might be
their stay, and not asking for anything.”
that they’re not doing their jobs
With so many different time zones
office-based for communications, or
But there’s no rest for the wicked, it
because they have to; they’re doing
people-facing out on the floor, but no
seems, even after regulars have left.
them because they want to. But how
matter what, she’s always happy if she
Once she’s confirmed that they’re
could I get bored? It’s never, ever
doesn’t hear a peep for the duration of
home safely, Kelly still keeps in touch,
going to be Groundhog Day.”
FRILL of the
CHASE From its private salon on Old Bond Street, Symbolic & Chase provides an exclusive and personal service to jewellery collectors and investors alike. Founder and director Martin Travis explains more about the importance of ‘objets d’art’, and why timeless pieces can be treasured though generations
Tell us the background of
At 114 carats, the cushion-shaped diamond
You have a passion for ‘objets d’art’ –
Symbolic & Chase
is comparable to the very famous ‘Tiffany
why should jewellery be viewed as art
Formed 11 years ago and working out of
Yellow’ (128 carats), which can be found in
rather than just a symbol of wealth?
a space in another firm’s office at 30 Old
the permanent collection of Tiffany, and is
I feel I owe it to the jewellery. As with
Bond Street, the business had a modest
displayed in their New York headquarters.
paintings, they can be seen as merely
turnover in the region of £3million. The
Over the last three years, we’ve sold a
something pretty to hang on a wall, or a
main revenue was sales of important
few of the most important jewels to appear
piece of art, exquisitely executed to reflect
watches and brokering auction purchases,
on the market, including a Cartier corsage
the human condition. The latter you cherish,
on behalf of clients unable to see the items
brooch for in excess of £14million, and
pass down through the family and imbue
a historical pearl dating back to 1551,
with your own history; the former you forget
belonging to Mary Tudor. Other significant
is there and it ends up forgotten – often just
What are some of the standout
items have included contemporary pieces
because it’s misunderstood.
items in your collection?
like the important multi-coloured sapphire
Currently, we have one of the largest old-cut,
Tulip brooch by JAR, which was unveiled and
designers who weren’t in it for the money or
vivid yellow diamonds in the world for sale.
sold at London’s Masterpiece show this June.
the sparkles, but expressing themselves and
Each period of history has its jewellery
their times through the medium. Our love of
aspects of jewellery and objets d’art in
reflection of our personalities more than
jewellery is driven by this aspect, so we find
general, but it’s hard to be well-connected
anything else. We’re more personal than
ourselves naturally communicating this to
and truly an expert in many. However, in
corporate, and enjoy the interaction with
anyone who will listen! Thankfully, our clients
our personal collections, we have Roman
our clients, and tailoring a collection around
have eager ears.
and Hellenistic rings, 18th-century Chinese
a personal taste and interest, rather than a
snuff bottles, Japanese netsuke, 17th-century
financial consideration. Which isn’t to say
In what ways have trends changed
silver, and contemporary sculpture, to name
that the two are mutually exclusive!
over time, and how is this reflected in
but a few.
your client base?
Where’s it all heading going forward?
Most jewellery dealers have a personal taste or
Do you work with investors
Still operating at the same address, the
an area of the market they’re strongest in. Tastes
as well as collectors?
company has gradually expanded, opening
and trends change hugely between periods, as
The Mary Tudor pearl was an example of
a new gallery extension of 2,000 square
you can see with art, architecture and fashion.
a piece we encouraged a client to buy for
feet over two floors. I hope we continue to
As a result, jewels from each century have quite
investment, as we knew there was a story/
do what we love, and that this continues to
a different clientele, both from a sourcing and
history to be uncovered. Another investment
bring fascinating objects, and people, to our
a selling point of view. Very few clients will have
project was the restoration of a Cartier Deco
door. The market is changing rapidly, but
exceptional items spanning more than a century,
necklace belonging to Doris Duke – four years
we’re small and energetic enough to change
and if they do, they’ll probably have sourced
and 120 carats later, the client was offered a
quickly with it.
them from different dealers, as the networks are
very sizeable return for his investment.
closely knit! Ours is a mixture of personal taste and an evolution of clientele. We love so many
We have a couple of large funds that we help source items for, but our core business remains private collectors. I think it’s a
“Our aim is to be modern in a very traditional world…” Since the 18th century, Louis Roederer has led the way in defining the world of wine with its iconic Champagne range. In an exclusive interview, CEO Frédéric Rouzaud reflects on a sparkling legacy, while looking ahead to a promising future for the dynasty’s tireless ‘quest for perfection’
n the wine industry, patience is always a
cellar for seven years, so time is very long in
very passionate challenge for me. I wake up
virtue. Just ask Frédéric Rouzaud, CEO of
the business of great wine production.”
every day thinking how lucky I am to have the
world-famous Champagne brand, Louis
Which is just as well. Dating back to
chance to manage such an iconic, singular
Roederer, who’ll tell you that, perhaps more
1776, the acclaimed winery has never been
than any other, his is a sector that’s forever
in any rush, and remains one of the last
playing the long game. From conception
independent, family-run Champagne houses
course, at the heart of the business. The
to completion, each and every drop of the
still in operation. Today, it comprises over 240
land’s pronounced northern character is key
estate’s renowned Cristal label is a constant
hectares, located in the best terroirs of the
to its success, along with a chalky terroir and
balancing act of fusing the old with the new.
region, including the Grands and Premiers
continental climate, which come together to
Crus of the Montagne de Reims, the Côte des
cultivate generous amounts of perfectly ripe
Blancs, and the Vallée de la Marne.
grapes. As far as Frédéric’s concerned, the
“The game we have to play in the wine business is always between tradition and modernity,” says Frédéric. “We’re in a very
“It’s a great privilege to inherit and manage
and unique Champagne house.” The celebrated French province is, of
place is very much the essence of everything
long-term business, and have to wait 20 years
this company,” Frédéric continues. “It’s a
before we can pick grapes that are good
jewel of Champagne, which in turn is a jewel
“The Champagne region is a miracle,” he
enough for Cristal. We have to store it in our
of the world’s sparkling wine regions, so it’s a
insists. “The main components come from the
that goes on at Louis Roederer.
terroir and climate, which are really unique.
relationship between tiller and landscape
don’t have our vineyards, so bring more diversity
That’s a point of uniqueness and singularity
results in a perpetual ‘quest for perfection’,
to the wines," Frédéric adds. They’re long-term
that Champagne has – terroir, climate, and
where an age-old tradition of attaining
partners of Louis Roederer, and we work very
nearly 300 years’ experience in the area.
optimal grape maturity helps to enrich the
closely together in the viticulture process.”
“We’re lucky enough to have 240 hectares located in Champagne. Out of that estate,
palette of flavours all the more. “Everyone at Louis Roederer has to be
A communal spirit can be felt across the entire company, in fact, which places a great
about 80 make Cristal, and are the oldest
inventive and creative enough in every detail
emphasis not on short-term profit margins, but
and best-located terroirs. They produce
necessary to produce our Champagnes,”
a sustainable legacy of heritage. To that end,
absolutely fabulous grapes for making
explains Frédéric. “There are so many
Frédéric has made it his mission to uphold his
Cristal. I can’t resist having a glass!”
different details in the winemaking process,
family’s values by looking at the bigger picture
But the terrain is only part of the story, as
with lots of freedom for creativity. Our aim
before all else. In doing so, he can ensure that
almost three centuries of longevity doesn’t
is to be modern in a very traditional world,
Louis Roederer is far from just a trademark, but
stem just from the right soil types and wind
which needs time to be good.
an enduring symbol of quality.
directions. Indeed, the men and women who
While Louis Roederer uses 100% of its own
“It’s a unique privilege that guarantees the
tend to the vineyards throughout the year are
grapes for its vintage styles, including Cristal,
image and long-term position that we want for
equally important. Each vine is pruned and
a small proportion of grapes is brought in for
Louis Roederer,” he reveals about the concern’s
shoot nurtured to harvest grapes that are
the production of Brut Premier.
family dynamic. “My family don’t ask me to make
meticulously handpicked and pressed onsite; a delicate art form in its own right. To guarantee richness, clarity and warmth, these skilled growers know all of the plots like
“The growers are very important, because they mainly
more profit in the next three months, or even in the next year; they want me to put
come from areas
Louis Roederer in the best position
for the next 20 years. Only a family
the backs of their hands. By respecting the
shareholder can understand that
earth’s biodiversity, a symbiotic
kind of investment.
“They’re very attached to the product, to
manage nearly 600 people, not only
“It’s always a work in progress at Louis
Champagne, and to this environment, so
in Champagne, but also in places like
Roederer,” he concludes. “We’ve existed for
I’m very proud to be the manager of this
Bordeaux and Provence. We have many
nearly 240 years now, and it’s a long-term
family-run company. When you start to have
different areas, so to manage all of these
process to create anything new. So, it’s a
too many financial people behind your
fantastic wineries is very interesting.
question of making sure that everybody
shareholders, you’re not as free to make
“I also have to take care of the finance,
creates the most interesting thing.
good decisions for the long term. Sometimes,
because the shareholders are my family, and
financial decisions don’t go very well with
sometimes want to know that everything’s under
company’s movement in a traditional world,
control on that side! Plus, I also get to travel the
and the challenge now is to communicate
world a lot and drink wine nearly every day!”
with our customers. The more people know
As a prime example, the majority of Cristal
“What interests me is managing this
is now produced bio-dynamically, adding
Not a bad position to be in by any
another dimension to the Louis Roederer
means. Things have certainly changed
and the happier we’ll be to contribute to the
range. It’s a process that ultimately costs
in the trade during his tenure – most
magic of Champagne in a better way.”
more and takes longer – an approach that
notably, the ‘evolution’ of the way in which
would no doubt raise stakeholders’ eyebrows
Champagne is enjoyed, from a dessert
in any other enterprise – but Frédéric is
accompaniment 100 years ago, to the
confident that it will pay dividends in the end,
aperitif it is now – but Frédéric’s goal will
Don't miss the Louis Roederer ice
enriching and diversifying the overall output.
always be to create first-rate wines and
rink in The Savoy's Thames Foyer this
continue to leave his family’s mark on the
Christmas, from Sunday November 20
2016 to Friday January 6 2017.
“I’m so lucky to work in this kind of wine environment,” he maintains. “I have to
about us, the more they’ll come and visit,
RADIANT ROEDERER Introducing some of the winery’s top bottles
Blanc de Blancs Vintage Brut Nature 2009
The Blanc de Blancs Vintage is a
2009 was incomparable in
The freshness, finesse and
A characteristic Roederer rosé.
pure, taut, fine and bright wine.
terms of quality, and produced
brightness of Brut Premier make
The concentration, fruitiness
Its contrasting tones range from
consistent, fresh, crunchy grapes. it the perfect wine for festive
and compactness of the
an intense, chiselled acidity, to
The wines are more Burgundian occasions. Its structured texture,
Cumières Pinot Noir grapes are
the supple lightness of notes of
in character in hot years, and
richness and length are distinctly
transcended by the elegance,
fresh hazelnuts, almonds and
are characterised by a gentle
winey. It’s a full, complex wine
purity and freshness of the finest
white flowers, with accents of
freshness and a pure expression that’s both rich and powerful,
Chardonnay grapes, cultivated
acacia, broom and honeysuckle. of their terroir.
while remaining a great classic.
on the Côte des Blancs.
Intense, refreshing and
A wine of pure pleasure
The perfect product
This exceptional blend
exceptionally precise, the bouquet and a sophisticated
from the Louis Roederer
of eight harvests reveals its
reveals a comprehensive and
terroir, in which finesse,
equilibrium, strength and
complex range of flavours – the
Cristal is both powerful
purity, precision and
roundness with the addition
ensemble is silky, full-bodied,
and delicate, combining
harmony highlight the
of Louis Roederer’s famous
luscious and light.
subtlety and precision.
qualities of a great vineyard.
KASPAR THE CAT
The curiosity of
The Savoy has welcomed its fair share of colourful characters, not least of which is its famous ‘14th guest’ Kaspar, crafted by professional sculptor Jonty Hurwitz. Sally Vaughan, co-founder and managing director of art specialists Go Figurative, learns about the hotel’s most beloved creation
uriosity killed the cat, or so the old proverb goes; ‘but
dinner, the guests discussed a particular superstition: that the first
satisfaction brought it back’ is the full version. This
person to leave a table of 13 would be the first person to die.
was the intention of The Savoy’s seafood offering – a
Joel, as host, boldly offered to leave the table first. Back home in
restaurant and bar so sumptuous that guests keep on coming back. And I was tasked with finding art that would tell the story. My curiosity was piqued; who exactly was Kaspar, and how
Johannesburg a few weeks later, he was shot dead. Admittedly, Johannesburg in 1898 was a dangerous city, but Joel’s death appeared to confirm that there might be some
important was he to the history of The Savoy? Such is the rich tapestry
truth to the superstition after all. Taking no further chances, The
of the hotel’s past that it’s one of the few in the world to have its own
Savoy’s management announced that, to allay future concerns
archivist and historian. I turned to Susan Scott for an answer:
at dinners for 13 guests, a footman would be seated at table, as
Kaspar, The Savoy’s famous black cat, was carved in 1927 by the designer Basil Ionides, from one single block of plane.
a silent but symbolic 14th guest. This was hardly a convenient solution; clients wishing to discuss
His intended function was to act as the 14th guest in the private
confidential matters were unhappy at doing so with a stranger
dining rooms when 13 guests were present, and his creation
at the table, and the hotel was deprived of the services of a
was directly related to the unfortunate demise of a Savoy client
member of staff at what might be a busy time. There must be
over a quarter of a century earlier.
One evening in 1898, a wealthy South African, Woolf Joel, hosted a small private dinner at The Savoy for 13 people. During
In 1926, British-born architect and designer Ionides was commissioned by the directors of The Savoy to redecorate the
private dining room ‘Pinafore’ in the new, modern Art Deco style. Ionides then took on another challenge: the 14th guest. His solution, presented at The Savoy in 1927, was a two-foot carved and painted black cat, made from a single piece of wood. With a napkin around his elegant Art Deco neck, Kaspar has been the ultimate 14th guest, silent and discreet, ever since. He continues to make up the numbers at tables of 13 to this day, and, when not working, greatly enjoys sitting in state in the front hall, watching the world go by. Susan’s explanation immediately sparked ideas for me. Could we reincarnate Kaspar using today’s techniques and materials? I studied the architectural plans and fabrics for the space, and realised very quickly that paintings wouldn’t work. I was interested in the silver-coloured columns and the shapes, and my mind turned to sculpture. I needed a pioneering sculptor, creating beautiful art and working at the very edge of technology, with a real understanding of aesthetics and narrative. Jonty Hurwitz immediately sprung to mind, who leapt into this project with both feet, creating a beautifully modern Kaspar to meet and greet guests, ensuring everyone can leave, safe in the knowledge that they won’t fall victim to the old superstition. I asked Jonty for his inspiration, his process and his hopes for rematerializing the spirit of Kaspar in 2013...
INSPIRATION One of my great heroes, Arthur C. Clarke, once said: “Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.” You’ve all heard the mystical story of Kaspar. This piece, while seemingly magical on the one hand, has, paradoxically, been crafted by some of the most advanced technologies known to humankind, including 3D printing, spatial scanning, 3D graphics, advanced chemistry and complex mathematics. And yet, science by its very nature is an antidote to superstition. As a mathematical artist, when I got this commission, I was left trying to represent the concept of superstition with the very tools of science that undermine it. For my research, I turned to Google and hunted for academic papers on superstition, finally coming across an academic called Stuart A. Vyse from the University of Connecticut. This is what I learned from him: “We believe in superstition as an irrational response to our lack of understanding of how the universe works.” So, using the great irrational number pi, I set about recreating the exquisite cat created by Basil Ionides. I hope this sculpture expands and deepens the story of Kaspar; I hope it breathes new life into the tradition of theatrical storytelling, which lies at the heart of the hotel; and I hope, most of all, that it adds to the joy and excitement that visitors experience, because, ultimately, that’s what The Savoy is all about.
to the overall appeal of the piece? I like to think it has created a
The Savoy is a great British institution. It stands for the best of
story within a story.
what London has to offer creatively, spanning a century. As a child growing up in South Africa, it was one of the few places,
together with Big Ben, that I could mention. When I got the
The new work of Kaspar brings together the irrational with the
commission, it was of great importance to understand the fabric
rational. It blends superstition and storytelling with science
of The Savoy, and to get a real sense of what makes it tick.
and mathematics. It takes The Savoy’s art collection into the
Living in the hotel during the art residency was undoubtedly one of the most humbling and exquisite periods of my life. The staff were all so supportive and ‘behind’ the production of this
21st century, while giving due honour to the hotel’s long and magical history. I hope guests take away memories and musings, inspirations
work; it really is hard to thank everyone enough for their good
and indecisions, wonder and intellectual thunder, and
spirit and hard work. I like to believe that their energies are
thoroughly think through theories on things. I hope they take
somehow part of what was created. Ultimately, only a small
small smiles and a spot of style too, with a serious helping of
part of a living institution is the sum of its histories – the sum of
the mysterious. I feel grateful to be part of something that’s so
its people is what counts.
much bigger than any one individual or idea.
Of course, it shouldn’t go without mention that I shared the Monet Suite with Basil Ionides’ Kaspar himself. We lived rather well together, and I think he was quite touched to be my muse. Over
Kaspar is on view in Kaspar’s. Satisfaction guaranteed.
the course of residency, Kaspar was polished, scanned, digitally
Sally Vaughan is co-founder and managing director of Go
re-sculpted, and eventually distorted in three-dimensional space,
Figurative, art consultants to The Savoy. To find out more, email
using the mathematical constant of pi.
email@example.com or visit www.gofiguartive.com
Ultimately, from a pot of molten bronze, his metaphorical form came to life. The metaphor of a metaphor. Art. How does it add
For more information on Jonty Hurwitz, head to www.jontyhurwitz.com
DARKNESS, DR DRA AMA, AMA, VIOLENCE AND LIGHT If you’re a lover of baroque fine art, you won’t want to miss The National Gallery’s Beyond Caravaggio exhibition. Curator Letizia Treves reflects on how the revolutionary figure’s legacy of intense naturalism, dramatic lighting and powerful storytelling inspired a generation
17th-century Paintings, orchestrating a
demonstrating how Caravaggio’s art
showcase like this one was too good an
came to inspire a whole generation of
opportunity to resist.
practitioners in its wake.
Gallery in Trafalgar
“I had the idea about four years ago,”
“This is the first time the exhibition’s
she says. “I was thinking about our
been done in Britain, so I wanted to
Square is bringing the story of one of
own collection, as we have three great
approach it differently,” continues
the world’s most iconic artists vividly to
masterpieces by Caravaggio from each of
Letizia. “I was keen to explore whether
life – but not in a way you might expect.
the distinct phases of his career, but very
we could tell the story with pictures
Indeed, the exhibition, which runs until
little context for him. I was very keen to
principally sourced from regional
Sunday January 15, is the UK’s first
explore putting them in a wider context.
museums, stately homes and country
major display to explore the visionary’s
There’s a tendency to view him in isolation
houses in this country, showing what
influence on his contemporaries
because he’s so famous, so I wanted to
great treasures and lesser-known
show his influence and impact.”
pictures we have here. I think scholars
Comprising a total of 49 pieces –
To illustrate her point, Letizia set about
and people who know about this
including six by Caravaggio himself – the
sourcing the works she needed, the vast
period will be very surprised at what
spectacle gives visitors a unique chance
majority of which came from museums,
we’ve managed to unearth.
to discover a number of hidden treasures
stately homes, castles and private
from around the British Isles. For curator
collections across Britain and Ireland.
argument as visually compelling as
Letizia Treves, who also oversees the
The intention was to select pictures that
possible, so the six Caravaggios in
gallery’s Later Italian, Spanish and French
would be unfamiliar to appreciators,
the show are positioned very carefully
“I very much wanted to make the
alongside the pictures by his followers.
of Christ. Above all else, it was Letizia’s
people will take away and be most
I hope the visual impact makes it very
aim to place the main emphasis on the
surprised by is the sheer quality and
clear what I’m trying to say in terms of
power of a lot of his followers’ pictures,”
what people took from him.”
“All of these pictures get put under
she insists. “They’re all so varied from
Among the key highlights is the
this umbrella term of ‘Caravaggesque’
one another, which is largely because
gallery’s own Boy Bitten by a Lizard
because it’s convenient, but I think what
each of them took something quite
(1594-5), which hangs alongside
distinct from Caravaggio and mixed it in
compositions such as Cecco del
with their own styles, so the results are
Caravaggio’s A Musician (about 1615),
Bartolomeo Manfredi’s Fortune Teller
“He’s an artist whose biography
(about 1615-20), and a masterpiece
has somewhat overtaken his artistic
by French ‘Caravaggesque’ painter,
influence, so this isn’t an exhibition
Georges de la Tour, The Cheat with the
about Caravaggio himself. His career
Ace of Clubs (1630-34).
is very much interwoven with his
Other ‘Caravaggesque’ artworks,
biography, so they go hand in hand,
like Giovanni Serodine’s Tribute Money
but other than references to various key
(1625) and Antiveduto Gramatica’s Christ
episodes in his life, I don’t dwell on his
Disputing with the Doctors (about 1613),
biography at all, because I really want
are accompanied by Caravaggio’s own
the focus to be on the followers.”
The Supper at Emmaus (1601), as well as the recently rediscovered The Taking
Naturally, the gallery provided the perfect backdrop against which to
stage such an event. Many of the masterworks can be viewed in the Sainsbury Wing, which was opened by Queen Elizabeth II and celebrated its 25th anniversary in 2016. Over the last two decades, the building has offered millions of people a fitting space to contemplate an outstanding early Renaissance collection. “We’re known for our ground breaking exhibitions, which I think this is, in the sense that it’s not been done before in Britain, and has never been done before in this way,” Letizia considers. “The initial source of inspiration often stems from a painting – or a group of paintings – from our own collection. I think it’s what we do best.” Of course, Caravaggio wasn’t always as beloved as he is today. Seduced by
“All of these pictures get put under this
the power of his imagery, successors continued to emulate his style well after his death in 1610. By the middle of the
umbrella term of
17th century, however, his naturalistic
of a more classical tradition. It wasn’t
approach had been rejected in favour until almost 300 years later that his
because it’s convenient,
reputation was fully restored.
but I think what people
Caravaggio’s always been fashionable, but
will take away and be most surprised by is the sheer quality and
“A lot of people assume that that’s really not the case,” reveals Letizia. “There’s an obsession and still so much to learn about him, as he’s a relatively recent rediscovery. Although exhibitions on this subject have been done before in continental Europe and America, this is
power of a lot of his
the first time it’s been tackled in Britain,
an artist who influences and speaks to
which I thought was long overdue. He’s many different art forms.”
Speaking of the UK, Britain played a
that it’s the first time we’ve done
who know this period well have been
substantial role in getting the show on
a collaboration between the three
surprised by some of the pictures in the
the road. In addition to locating the
Nationals, which is a very nice legacy
show that they didn’t know, by artists
selection of largely unknown images,
for the show in London.”
they hadn’t even heard of. It’s been
Letizia made it her mission to do so
Having opened its doors in October,
really satisfying to unearth some of these
within the confines of her own country.
the exhibit has been warmly received by
lesser-known names and bring them to
And as a natural extension of the
audiences and critics alike – a dream
a larger audience. They may not rival
legacy, the exposition will travel to the
come true for Letizia, who managed
Caravaggio, but they’re certainly worthy
National Gallery of Ireland in Dublin,
to obtain every work of art she asked
of greater attention from a wider public.”
and the Scottish National Gallery in
for, counting all the known original
Edinburgh, in 2017.
Caravaggios in the UK. And while it still
Beyond Caravaggio is open now until
has several stops to make, she remains
Sunday January 15 at The National
opportunity to see it London, Dublin
confident that it will create an equally
Gallery. For tickets and pricing information,
and Edinburgh have very different
big impact wherever it’s unveiled.
“For people who won’t have the
audiences, which adds another
“The show’s exactly how I imagined
or call 0800 912 6958.
dimension to the show,” Letizia insists.
it, which is very rare for a curator to be
Overseas customers can book
“What’s lovely about this show is
able to say,” she concludes. “Even people
by dialling +44 (0)20 7126 5573.
CREDITS: 1.THE NATIONAL GALLERY, LONDON 2.ASHMOLEAN MUSEUM, UNIVERSITY OF OXFORD 3.FERENS ART GALLERY, HULL MUSEUMS 4.ASHMOLEAN MUSEUM, UNIVERSITY OF OXFORD 5.THE NATIONAL GALLERY, LONDON 6.BIRMINGHAM MUSEUMS TRUST, ON BEHALF OF BIRMINGHAM CITY COUNCIL 7.THE BURGHLEY HOUSE COLLECTION 8.NATIONAL TRUST IMAGES/JOHN HAMMOND 9.KIMBELL ART MUSEUM, FORT WORTH, TEXAS 10.BIRMINGHAM MUSEUMS TRUST, ON BEHALF OF BIRMINGHAM CITY COUNCIL 11.NATIONAL TRUST IMAGES/JOHN HAMMOND 12.THE NATIONAL GALLERY OF IRELAND, DUBLIN 13.THE NATIONAL GALLERY, LONDON 14.HISTORIC ENGLAND 15.YORK MUSEUMS TRUST
THE STORY OF JK7
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ALL ALONG THE
NORTHBANK Running from Admiralty Arch in the West, across Trafalgar Square, along the Strand and through Aldwych to Temple, The Northbank is among London’s most significant, recognisable environments. Here’s how a substantial investment is returning the business improvement district back to the fore
SAVOY_OCTOBER16_Destination Guide2.indd 82
ocated in the Strand, The Savoy enjoys a prime position as part of London’s Northbank district. This unique stretch, which connects Parliament with the City and takes
in Trafalgar Square and Aldwych, encompasses a wealth of iconic landmarks and leading attractions. From The National Gallery and the National Portrait Gallery, to Somerset House and Nelson’s Column, there’s plenty to see and do. Today, the borough boasts some of the capital’s most popular theatres, alongside an eclectic array of shops, restaurants and hotels. Embodying all of the city’s idiosyncrasies, its historic buildings sit side by side with modern architecture, providing a sense of place that’s truly one of a kind for investors, employees, residents and visitors. “The Northbank is an incredibly important part of London,” says Ruth Duston, CEO of The Northbank BID. “There are some amazing buildings here, as well as great theatres, restaurants and an interesting commercial mix. It’s an area that has a lot of personality, but one that hasn’t quite come together. The role of the BID is to tie up all of those strands.” Indeed, in response to a lack of public funding, The Northbank has been one of 300 BIDs (or ‘business improvement districts’) operating around the UK since 2011. The £8.6million initiative aims to breathe new life into what was once the destination of choice in Central London, by way of a five-year financial injection from 2013 to 2018. “In essence, a BID is a collective partnership that brings together local business communities, who wish to act as stewards of their area and take more ownership,” Ruth continues.
SAVOY_OCTOBER16_Destination Guide2.indd 83
SELFRIDGES “As one of the main processional
our biggest offers, so we’ll be exploring
routes, The Northbank is such a unique
all of those opportunities, looking at
and historic area, but lost its way a little
how we can link them up for better
bit, and perhaps hadn’t had the care
permeability. There’s quite an ambitious
and attention that it quite deserved in
development pipeline underway at the
moment, and lots of exciting commercial
In an attempt to remedy this, local
and residential developments coming
companies have rallied together to
into the area as well.”
work more collectively in improving
As a means of generating the
their territory’s overall offering.
necessary revenue, regional concerns
An ambitious programme is well
pay a tax to be part of the BID, which is
underway, covering infrastructural issues as diverse as public safety, environmentalism, marketing and promotion, and corporate social responsibility; in short, restoring The Northbank to its former glory. “The big strategic projects are very much all focused around investment in The Northbank’s infrastructure,” explains Ruth. “We’re looking at things like retail and lighting strategies, and creating a better experience for pedestrians and visitors. We’re also trying to address some of the traffic congestion issues for buses and cyclists, enhance the public space, and enable people to really appreciate what the area has to offer.” To re-establish The Northbank’s
“The Northbank is an incredibly important part of London. There are some amazing buildings here, as well as great theatres, restaurants and an interesting commercial mix”
then reinvested back into the landscape, based on priorities that members feel are important. A number of ventures have already been completed, or are in planning or construction stages, revitalising The Northbank’s offer and attracting more traders. Among its major upcoming advancements is the proposed Garden Bridge. Designed by Thomas Heatherwick and inspired by an idea from actress Joanna Lumley, ‘London’s new landmark’ is due for completion by 2018, connecting The Northbank to The Southbank, and revolutionising the way in which people move around Central London. But, as Ruth insists, this is anything but a Southbank 2.0. “We want The Northbank to be very
reputation as a safe and secure place to
much on the map, but we’re not just
work, live and explore, the BID has built
another Southbank,” she declares. “The
a strong relationship with its dedicated
offer’s very different on this side of the
Safer Neighbourhood Business Police
river, and we want to build on those
Team, while also strengthening its
unique aspects and elements. We’ve got
green infrastructure by planning more
quite a few grand hotels like The Savoy
trees, parks, gardens, living roofs, rain
here, but we’re also building on the
gardens and pocket parks.
offer that we have in the theatre district.
Elsewhere, a corporate social
There’s a large corporate mix as well,
responsibility (CSR) strategy encourages
and we’re collectively looking at devising
businesses to make a positive impact
a strategy to enhance the retail offer.”
on the environment, consumers,
Of course, fusing the past seamlessly
employees, communities, stakeholders
with the present is crucial. To that
and other members of the public. And
end, the BID is taking an integrated
with a hive of activity, outdoor spaces,
approach towards development,
famous monuments and cultural
acknowledging what’s already
life on its doorstep, a marketing
available, as well as augmenting the
and communications plan has been
prospective enjoyment of the quarter.
implemented to raise the area’s profile.
Its stance is certainly in keeping with
“Through investment, we’ll look to link
The Northbank’s architectural legacy
up the rich assets that the area has,” Ruth
and aesthetic, but remains no less
confirms. “Our cultural assets are among
determined in its delivery.
SAVOY_OCTOBER16_Destination Guide2.indd 84
“We’re blending the old with the new,
tube lines, and close proximity to
we’re seeing so many of them across
but getting the balance right,” states
four underground stations, making it
Ruth. “That’s another aspect of the BID;
reachable from all parts of Greater
it’s very much a formal consultative
London. As such, it’s no wonder that
improved social wellbeing for
body, so we can influence planning
the BID has garnered some serious
employees and residents, or
permission outcomes to ensure they’re
heavyweights in its corner.
sustainable investment for capital
sympathetic to the area’s heritage and
“It’s much more than just a talking
Whether it’s economic growth,
projects and services, the BID provides
history. So, hopefully there won’t be any
shop and carries a lot of weight,”
a voice for The Northbank’s enterprises
eyesores popping up along the Strand!”
Ruth reveals. “We have a very
and operators to make the appeal
good relationship with Transport for
of their pocket even more vibrant. By
such an attractive proposition is its
London, Westminster City Council, the
complementing its current assets and
connectivity. Excellent transport links
Metropolitan Police and other public
potential, Ruth has high hopes for a
include a range of bus routes, a
service providers. It’s a good business
bright future to come.
mainline train station, access to six
vehicle to operate within, which is why
Part of what makes The Northbank
“The purpose of the BID is to address all of The Northbank’s issues through a range of interventions,” she concludes. “I think BIDs are going to play an even more important role, because they address how we can be more creative in generating income to take these ambitious schemes forward. The main thing is to increase and enhance the pedestrian space. We’re well on our way to securing the funding, and I’d like to think that, by 2018, it will be seen as an achievable programme.”
SAVOY_OCTOBER16_Destination Guide2.indd 85
LONDON THROUGH THE LENS
As one of the world’s most iconic – and photogenic – cityscapes, London has inspired more than its fair share of photographers, who still continue to capture its splendour in exciting and innovative ways. Matthew Joseph explains how he pulled back the capital’s curtain for his London Sleeps series PHOTOGRAPHY BY MATTHEW JOSEPH
very Londoner has their own unique story
he employed a stripped-back, monochrome aesthetic, peering
of the city to tell. For photographers like
through the everyday hustle and bustle to visualise the place he
Matthew Joseph, whose perceptions are largely
wanted to discover in more depth.
determined through the lens of a viewfinder, such one-of-a-kind moments are perhaps even
“Black and white provides many benefits within photography,” he continues. “It removes a layer of distraction (colours), forcing
more precious, personal and poignant. Fusing artistic vision
the eye to search for light and shade among the angles – which
with technical prowess, these urban documentarians capture the
helps the photographer to emphasise certain aspects of what
capital at its most stunning, surprising, beautiful and expressive.
they see through their lens. Another key factor is its link to
That’s exactly what Matthew set out to achieve with his ongoing London Sleeps project, which aims to strip back the chaos of London, to reveal the breath-taking architectural infrastructure
timelessness; it has the ability to freeze time, or at least convey a neutral and timeless vista. “The beauty of London is its rich history – trade, commerce
that lies beneath. This kind of bold ambition is hardly surprising; specialising in portraiture and lifestyle photography, the London snapper is known for pushing boundaries. “After moving to London to live and work, it didn’t take me long to realise that, no matter how familiar I became with
and tourism have
“People assume that they’re seeing London
attracted cultures from
photographed at 5am on a Sunday morning,
played their own part
all over, which have all
but that would be translating ‘London Sleeps’
in its layout. However,
too literally – I wanted to make London ’sleep’
fascinating is that it’s a
while it was in fact wide awake, challenging the
what also makes London city in a constant state of flux; ever-changing,
viewer to look up from their smartphone the
with buildings coming
next time they’re walking to work”
simplicity of black and
the city, it never ceased
down and going up. The white means that this
to amaze me,” he says. “It was the depth of architecture, being
series could be continued for the next century, and still appear as
able to pinpoint periods in history, and seeing stories through the
though it was shot in the same year. That’s the plan, anyway!”
buildings that just made me think, “I love this place so much.” It
In addition to offering different takes on some of the bigger
was my mission to use my photography to reveal and expose the
tourist attractions, like the London Eye, Tower Bridge and The
London that amazed me, and present it in a new light.”
Shard, Matthew was equally keen to focus on the roads less
Honing in on the intricate and complex layout of the
travelled, which are so often lost among the helter-skelter of
landscape, Matthew utilised a black and white approach to
such a sprawling metropolis. Shooting the more subtle structures
full effect for his shoot. Often spending hours at a time in one
and side streets was key to exploring the generations of diversity
location, and always seeking to find an alternative point of view,
that had come before.
“I wanted to focus mostly on well-known sights around Central London, with the odd exception,” explains Matthew. “I needed to use familiar settings to get the point across, so multiculturalism
have looked more at home in the mega cities of Far East Asia than the capital of England. “Complexity and diversity speak for themselves – I don’t think I
isn’t easy to spot – until you dig a little further. That word, in
know of a more complex and diverse city. The centre of London
today’s context, is often used to talk about ethnicity as much as
being carved out by the twists and turns of the Thames, the
anything, but in the context of London’s history, it represents all
unplanned winding streets, Piccadilly, Trafalgar Square, Bank –
the different time periods of various monarchs, governments
it’s incredibly complex in the way it’s laid out, because it has the
and global influences.”
character and depth of an organic city that’s open to flux and
Indeed, the city’s cosmopolitan essence is very much at the heart of this piece. Far from nocturnal shoots in the dead of
susceptible to influence.” Despite its transient nature, however, Matthew firmly believes that
night, Matthew made a point of working when the capital was
the city’s original beauty can still be glimpsed today, as long as
at its busiest and most vibrant, enabling its true colours to shine
people take the time to stop, look and appreciate it. As for London
through in spite of itself – even if they did so through a greyscale
Sleeps, he’s more than happy to keep his technical methodology
filter. As far as he’s concerned, it was this fast-paced period that
under wraps, so as not to detract from viewers’ experiences of his
proved to be the prime time to act.
work; all that’s important is what they take away from it.
“It’s all deliberately shot at rush hour, to emphasise the point
“I rarely want to be too specific with my work in terms of
that brilliance can be seen through the busyness,” he insists.
message,” he concludes. “I’d rather shoot with a concept in
“People assume that they’re seeing London photographed
mind, then leave a lot open to interpretation for the viewer. The
at 5am on a Sunday morning, but that would be translating
main story is that London isn’t rigid; the plethora of the cranes
‘London Sleeps’ too literally – I wanted to make London ’sleep’
across the horizon tells you this. The image of Southwark Bridge
while it was in fact wide awake, challenging the viewer to look
sums it up quite nicely – I spend a long time getting this frame
up from their smartphone the next time they’re walking to work.”
right! You have Vintners’ Hall dating back to the 15th century,
As London faces ever-increasing population growth, it was
the 20th-century Southwark Bridge, the modern City of London
certainly important to Matthew to ensure that his ideas didn’t
to the east, and the cranes to the west, representing change and
get lost among the resultant congestion. His favourite places
the future of London.
to shoot include the City, on account of its overall complexity
“There are certainly technical aspects to the way I shoot this
and multiplicity. With its glass-clad buildings and contemporary
series. This means I inevitably need to employ quite a few
architecture, it provided the perfect contrast to the neoclassical
lighting and camera techniques, but it’s not something I enjoy
brickwork seen elsewhere.
talking about, because it misses the point. The viewer needs to
“It’s really the birthplace of London, or ‘Londinium’, founded by the Romans,” Matthew considers. “If you walk for five minutes
be looking at the art and taking in the observation. Letting the technicalities remain a mystery is often best.”
around the corner to Leadenhall, for example, you suddenly find yourself surrounded by architecture that, 20 years ago, would
“The beauty of London is its rich history – trade, commerce and tourism have attracted cultures from all over, which have all played their own part in its layout. However, what also makes London fascinating is that it’s a city in a constant state of flux; ever-changing, with buildings coming down and going up”
LIQUIPROOF LIFE How one young entrepreneur grew a successful international business – all because he hated the rain
aner Veli, a 29-year-old pharmaceutical science graduate from Kent, isn’t your average
worked like nothing else on the market. “I needed seriously reliable footwear
And he did. In 2011, aged just 24, Caner began developing an enhanced
protection,” says Caner. “I tried other
formula for a stain-preventing, liquid-
Brit who loves to hate the weather.
products, but the story was always the same:
repellent treatment that would eventually
He channelled his frustration at the
a white residue left behind; protection that
become the Liquiproof Protector spray.
rain and muddy puddles – destined to
didn’t last longer than a couple of days;
destroy his beloved shoe collection – into
and they often came in nasty aerosol cans.
the response was phenomenal,” Caner
developing a liquid repellent spray that
I knew I could do better.”
remembers. “People loved that you could
“When I released Liquiproof locally,
ADVERTORIAL wear anything – even something risky like a light pair of suede boots – and, once treated, you could walk through dirty water, cover them in ketchup, or even pour red wine on them and they’d still be as good as new.” Confident he had a solution to a common problem, Caner launched Liquiproof to the world. He quit his corporate job in London, built his own e-commerce website, and devoted every hour to growing his business. “I had plenty of ideas that didn’t pan out as expected,” he recalls. “But failure is all part of success.” Happy customers spread the word, and the spray grabbed the particular attention of online trainer enthusiasts – dubbed ‘sneakerheads’ – who loved the second-to-none protection. “Liquiproof has a very loyal fan base, which we’re incredibly proud of,” continues Caner. “My approach was to provide unparalleled customer service that matched the product and that stood us in great stead.” More success followed. In 2014, high street shoe giants Office started selling Liquiproof Footwear Protector nationwide, and Liquiproof was awarded in the Top 10 Most Innovative Businesses 2014 and Top 100 Start-ups 2015. Then, something unprecedented happened: the BBC asked Caner to appear on TV
“After the show aired in January 2016, I
“Now, we’ve taken that further. At our Pantiles
show Dragon’s Den. The revolutionary spray
had more orders than ever,” he explains.
Popup store, people can relax and have fun.
wowed judges, and he walked away with
“I wasn’t quite prepared for the floodgates
And we offer the Liquiproof Care Service, in
substantial investment from fashion retail
to open like they did! Business growth was
store and online, where we clean and protect
king Touker Suleyman.
accelerating at an extraordinary level, and I
your belongings so you don’t have to.”
was still creating new products, but couldn’t carry on alone. So I didn’t.”
Today, Caner and Liquiproof show no signs of slowing down. With a network of
In nine months, Caner took Liquiproof from
international distributors in place and a host
a one-man band in a small storage unit, to a
of high-profile wholesale clients, more is still
staff of 11 with a warehouse, large office and
to come. Caner mentors other entrepreneurs
flagship retail and social space in Tunbridge
on building successful international brands
Wells. The product range now includes fabric
and speaks regularly at business events.
and leather protectors for all items, not just
But his main focus hasn’t shifted.
footwear. And there are new offerings on
“Innovation is my biggest strength,”
the horizon, including an eco-friendly, all-
he concludes. “Soon, you’ll associate
purpose cleaner, and protector sprays
Liquiproof with much more than amazing
for wood, stone and glass.
protective sprays. I’m excited for everyone
“The Liquiproof philosophy is simple,” Caner
to see what comes next.”
reveals. “We make it easier for you to do the things you love. Whatever you treat lasts longer, so you clean and replace less, which means
Find out more at www.liquiproof.co.uk
more time and money for you to enjoy life.
SAVOIR'S LUXURIOUS SAVOY BED, PHOTOGRAPHED IN THE CHENG HOTEL'S FAMOUS BEAUFORT BAR ANGEL
SAVOY SUPPLIERS SERVICE
S U C H
S T U F F
DREAMS A R E
M A D E
You don’t know what a good night’s rest feels like until you’ve slept on a Savoir Bed – at least, that’s what celebrity guests at The Savoy have been saying for more than a century. Alistair Hughes, managing director of the bespoke bed company, reflects on more than 100 years of ‘sleeping beautifully’
ike so many things at The Savoy, even the beds you sleep on can lay claim to a heritage and history almost as iconic as the hotel itself. Enjoyed by such legendary luminaries as Winston Churchill, Giacomo Puccini and Marilyn Monroe, Savoir Beds
have been synonymous with the world-famous building since 1905, and laid upon by the great and the good of their times for over a century. “Savoir Beds was the creation of The Savoy,” explains Alistair Hughes, who came aboard as managing director in 1997. “Emma Thompson claimed that The Savoy Bed cured her insomnia and promptly placed an order. The late King Hussan of Morocco was a little more extravagant, ordering 24 for his palace after a stay!” Indeed, the stars who have flopped on the company’s flagship Savoy Bed have certainly come and gone, but the cloud-like comfort of Savoir has endured. Each bespoke mattress, box spring, headboard and topper is handmade in London or Cardiff – by one craftsman, for one client – using the best natural materials, including long, curled horse-tail, soft cashmere and British lamb’s wool.
“We use the finest natural materials on all of our beds, which are designed to breathe and maintain the perfect body temperature,” Alistair continues. “This isn’t possible with synthetic material and foams, but lamb’s wool, cashmere and horsetail all do the job perfectly. These fibres have been scientifically proven to better regulate temperature, and to improve the quality of REM sleep.” Using nested pocket springs to take individual shapes, as well as star-lashed hourglass springs to support different weights, Savoir ensures that all customers receive the support they need. What’s more, headboards, legs and fabrics are specifically tailored to every patron’s style requirements, meaning they not only feel fabulous after a sound night’s sleep, but look the part in the process too. “We work with many top designers, be it from the world of fashion, such as Sacha Walckhoff, creative director of Christian Lacroix, or interiors, like Nicky Haslam and Robert Couturier,” explains Alistair. “We believe that our clients should be able to have whatever style they wish, but that comfort shouldn’t be compromised – ever.” Today, Savoir is still making The Savoy Bed, now called the No.2. When The Savoy closed for refurbishment in 2007, discussions began about new models being produced for the hotel, incorporating the best of its historic legacy. Now, Savoir’s work can be seen in all of the Riverside Suites and the Royal Suite, in addition to gracing antique bed frames, super yachts and private jets. “Savoir handcrafts four main bed models – No.1, No.2, No.3 and No.4,” Alistair reveals. “But as each one is totally bespoke, with almost limitless style options, they really are one of a kind. The key for The Savoy was, of course, comfort. A good night’s sleep requires perfect support and the right environment, and the hotel provides quiet, temperature-controlled rooms that can be near blacked out when the time is right for sleep. “Working with The Savoy and using our expertise, we created a fabulous bed that can deal with clients of all shapes and sizes. Every detail has been considered by Savoir to ensure that those lucky enough to be sleeping on our beds in the hotel have a fabulous night.” With showrooms around the world, from London and Paris, to New York and Shanghai, the global brand’s bread and butter is its craftsmen, who operate from Savoir Bedworks in West London and Wales. Calm, light and airy, these two bases are where the magic happens, defying the archetype of typical factories by replacing machines and production lines with true artistry and skill. In London, foreman Arjoon Premaje has been making beds by hand since 1987. He’s one of three original Savoy craftsmen inherited by Savoir, and has trained most of the current team of 40, which includes a precision cutter and five seamstresses. Standards are so high that it takes at least a year to teach the techniques of making a bed base – two years if you count mattresses and headboards. “Savoir’s Bedworks, just six miles from The Savoy, is amazing,” insists Alistair. “We invite all clients to visit, and many do. What they discover is that each craftsman works on one complete item – a mattress, for example – from start to finish, and signs it at the end. Above each oak workbench, set above the beautiful tools, is the name of the client the bed is for. We like this close connection.”
An average bed – not that there’s any such thing – consists of a mattress, topper and box spring, and takes between 40 and 120 hours to handcraft, while the headboard and style elements add even more time. Much like tailors, the unique structures’ speed and requirements depend on the project in question, but the precision, care, effort and quality remains consistent time and time again. “In many factories, the fact that a real person will end up using the product is forgotten, but not at Savoir,” Alistair maintains. “Our way of working makes the job more interesting for the craftsperson, as it’s so varied. It might take 30 hours to make a box spring, combining many different skills and
operations. We need the best craftspeople, trained over many years, as materials such as loose, curled horse tail require great skill to use.” Of course, when designing a new bed for The Savoy, it’s imperative that it complements and remains consistent with the hotel’s show-stopping interiors. Following the lead of designer Pierre-Yves Rochon, who masterminded the present look and feel of the place, Savoir took inspiration for its ‘Savoy 01’ not from the bedrooms, but instead from one of its most celebrated cocktail lounges. “The aesthetic of the Savoy rooms was of course driven by Pierre-Yves Rochon, and guided by the Deco and Edwardian history of the hotel,” admits Alistair. “However, our creative director was inspired by Pierre’s stunning Beaufort Bar and the 1920s style to design a new Savoy Bed for our clients. This period represented a real heyday of glamour, jazz and movie stars at The Savoy. “Visually, the bed echoes the slim, elegant lines of 1920s design, and has a futuristic look with the use of sharp angles and metallic bronze silk. The shape is emphasised by the deliberate use of a single fabric to upholster the whole bed, including the legs. Lastly, there’s no fussy detailing that might detract from the simplicity of the shape.” Hearing Alistair talk about the process, you’d be forgiven for thinking you were listening not to a bed manufacturer, but to a visionary artist. And rightly so, as creating fine art is exactly what Savoir does – like a painter with their latest masterpiece, these artisan innovators only put their names to a one-of-a-kind product, which will enhance the overall wellbeing of Savoy guests for generations to come. “We’ve worked with The Savoy for over 100 years, and I very much hope that we’ll still be providing the hotel’s clients with the perfect night’s sleep in another 100 years!” Alistair concludes. “Many still decide that they’d like a part of The Savoy at home, and we can of course help with that. Sleep well, and the following day is so much better. I’m sure that Savoy guests wakeup to a better day, and long
WINSTON 03, DESIGNED BY SAVOIR'S CREATIVE DIRECTOR, MANDEEP DILLON
may that continue.”
POWER OF PERFORMANCE
With the new BMW 740e and 740Le xDrive, BMW i technology makes its debut on the new BMW 7 Series models. Here’s how a four-cylinder petrol engine, combined with permanent all-wheel drive using latest740e BMWand xDrive technology, created ‘an electrifying driving sensation’ With thetheBMW 740Le xDrive, BMW i technology makes its debut on the new 7 Series models. Here’s how a four-cylinder petrol engine, combined with permanent all-wheel drive using the latest xDrive technology, created ‘an electrifying driving sensation’
he sixth generation of the BMW 7 Series is a true flagship
Working intelligently together, the combustion engine produces
of the BMW range, blending comfort, style, dynamic
an output of 258hp, while the electric drive system produces
ability and cutting-edge technology in equal measure,
112hp, resulting in a combined system output of 326hp,
to create an inspiring mode of luxury transport. To complete the
and a combined peak torque of 500Nm. The immediate
range, the BMW 7 Series has borrowed technology from the BMW
response of the accelerator and sustained delivery of dynamic
i sub-brand, following in the footsteps of the BMW X5 eDrive40e,
power allow the BMW 740e to accelerate from zero to 62mph
BMW 225xe and BMW 330e for the new BMW 740e and 740Le
in 5.4 seconds, and the BMW 740Le xDrive to complete the
xDrive. The plug-in-hybrid variants of the new BMW 7 Series
same sprint in 5.3 seconds.
allow long-distance comfort and luxury to be experienced in combination with all-electric, locally emission-free mobility. Both models sit within the BMW iPerformance range, and benefit
The high-voltage lithium-ion battery has a gross capacity of 9.2kWh, and net capacity of 7.4kWh. It’s stored underneath the rear seat bench, in a space-saving position that also provides
from BMW eDrive and the Carbon Core body structure, which
optimum crash safety. In line with the BMW 7 Series models, the
are rooted in know-how from BMW i. The intelligently controlled
BMW 740e and BMW 740Le xDrive also benefit from a level
interaction between the combustion engine and the electric
surface in the luggage compartment, which offers a capacity of
drive, which together generate a total system output of 326hp,
420 litres. The stowage volume and practicality of the load area
endows the BMW 740e and 740 xDrive with strong acceleration,
sets the benchmark in the luxury plug-in hybrid sedan segment.
while simultaneously realising a substantial reduction in fuel consumption and emissions.
The energy flow between the high-voltage battery, electric motor and charger is controlled by power electronics, likewise developed specifically for these models. The power electronics
The Hybrid Drivetrain: An advanced partnership
also regulate the supply of energy, from the high-voltage battery
The electric motor is fully integrated into the eight-speed
to the 12V on-board electrical system, via a voltage transformer.
Steptronic transmission. This ensures that pure-electric driving,
The cars’ sporty driving characteristics are accompanied
the dynamics-enhancing electric boost function, and the
by extraordinarily low petrol consumption and emissions.
recuperation of braking energy are able to operate efficiently.
The BMW 740e records a combined fuel consumption of
134.5mpg, while the 740Le xDrive achieves 117.7mpg.
widely as possible. The combustion engine is initiated at speeds of
The CO2 emissions associated with petrol consumption are
approximately 50mph, or under heavy throttle applications.
49g/km and 54g/km respectively. The efficiency of the BMW
The driver can switch to the MAX eDRIVE pure-electric mode at
eDrive technology, developed using know-how from BMW i,
the touch of a button. In this setting, the car is powered exclusively
is proven in the all-electric, locally emission-free driving,
by the electric motor, although the combustion engine can be
resulting in a range of 29 miles.
brought into play at any time by pushing the accelerator into kickdown. In the MAX eDRIVE setting, the BMW iPerformance
BMW 740Le xDrive: Permanent all-wheel
variants of the new BMW 7 Series have a pure-electric top speed
drive mixed with all-electric driving
of 87mph. The Battery Control setting allows the charge of the
The BMW 740Le xDrive follows in the tyre tracks of the BMW
high-voltage battery to be set manually. The driver can input a
X5 xDrive40e, as the brand’s second model to distribute its
target value between 30 and 100% of maximum charge, which is
power permanently to all four wheels in pure electric driving.
then available for pure-electric driving later in the journey.
The intelligent all-wheel-drive system ensures supreme traction,
The plug-in hybrid variants of the new BMW 7 Series are also
optimised directional stability, and enhanced agility through all
equipped as standard, with the newly designed Driving Experience
types of corners, in all-weather and road conditions. The variable
Control switch on the centre console. At the touch of a button,
power distribution between the front and rear wheels gives the
the driver can activate a vehicle setting that optimises dynamics,
BMW 740Le xDrive a dynamic accelerative ability, with the journey
comfort or efficiency. The range of characters encompassed by
from rest to 62mph completed in 5.3 seconds.
ECO PRO, COMFORT and SPORT modes are even more clearly
As with all iPerformance models, the eDrive button allows the
defined than with conventionally powered vehicles. Beyond
driver to change how the plug-in hybrid drive system operates. In
this, the Driving Experience Control switch offers the option of
the AUTO eDRIVE hybrid function, intelligent energy management
selecting ADAPTIVE mode. In this setting, the car’s responses adapt
ensures that the combustion engine and electric motor work
noticeably to the driver’s style and route profile.
together to the dynamically optimised effect. The operating strategy defaults to all-electric mode at low and moderate speeds,
The BMW 740e and BMW 740Le xDrive are on sale now.
to utilise the advantages of locally emission-free mobility as
Prices start at £68,330 OTR.
Aspiring homeowners with deep pockets and a sense of adventure needn’t look any further than Christie’s International Real Estate when considering their next property purchase. To give you some inspiration, here’s a range of five fantastic overseas homes just waiting to be bought across the pond
ver dreamed of owning your own private island,
Its global network includes 135 affiliated brokerages operating
tucked away in secluded tranquillity, overlooking
from 1,200 offices, tailored for price brackets of $1million and
far-reaching ocean vistas? If snapping up that
above. With a finely tuned range of programmes, it provides a
dream property abroad is your ambition, now
leading showcase for distinguished homes.
could be the time to make the first step towards your next globetrotting acquisition.
For an idea of what’s on the market at the moment, we’ve rounded up an assortment of breath-taking options that you
Whether you’re looking to buy in the US, Mexico or Brazil,
won’t want to miss. From architectural gems in the Mexican state
Christie’s International Real Estate operates in 45 countries,
of Yucatán, to spectacular refuges on the coast of Bahia, there
with an annual turnover of $118billion in 2015. Supported by
are plenty of fantastic places to get your hands on. Read on to
the esteemed art business, the leading luxury real estate brand
find out where prospective purchasers can secure their very own
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slice of paradise…
GREAT ISLAND Connecticut, United States Price: $175million Completely private, yet close to New York City, Great Island is a secluded sphere of incredible beauty and solitude. Bordered by 14 additional acres of conservation land, with marvellous grounds and trees surrounded by water on all sides, it’s connected to the mainland by isthmuses with wide driveways. This magnificent property was acquired in 1902 as a compound for a well-known family, who are still the owners. The original stone main house, Villa Juliette, was built to impressive standards entirely out of stone with a tile roof, and rests on a stunning site, with superb water views in all directions. A total of 200 stonemasons built the surrounding
structures, including a stable with a Guastavino tile ceiling, several beach cottages and a polo field, as well as a caretaker’s house with a greenhouse, a yacht basin with docks, a gatehouse and a cow barn. There are several cottages along the beaches, and a charming 1860s antique house is situated in its own hidden corner near the stone stable, which features a clock in the gable, a copper weathervane and three apartments. Just 55 minutes from Manhattan, and with no other properties of this size so close to the Big Apple on Long Island Sound, this is a unique opportunity to create a family home for generations to come.
HACIENDA SAN BERNARDO Yucatán, Mexico Price: $12million Combining the comforts and luxury of the modern era with the charm and elegance of the golden age of the Yucatán Peninsula, this extraordinary property, which dates back to the 19th century, offers a unique opportunity. Lavishly remodelled by the world-renowned Mexican architect Marco Aldaco, the residence is defined by a well-considered and impeccably decorated interior, with doors and details made of the finest tropical woods.
The elegant main house boasts eight sumptuous bedrooms, each with its own bath, while two additional bedrooms can be found in a separate house, divided into two apartments with fully equipped kitchens. Surrounded by tropical gardens and waterfalls, and just 45 minutes from the bustling city of Merida, and 30 minutes from the airport via the freeway to Campeche, this is a superb chance to own a beautiful property rooted in Mexican history.
VILLA CAJU Urucuca, Brazil POA Between miles of white, fluffy sand beach where turtles still spawn, and green rainforest with rivers and waterfalls, lies Villa Caju. The house was built not to impose, but to fit in on the 23,000m² property. Outlining volumes and transparencies bring in light, and the ocean breeze blows through night and day, while the materials used were carefully selected from artisanal and natural origins. The upper floor includes four suites with ocean views, one of which is the master suite, with a massage area and Ofuro bath. The office overlooks the living room, gardens
and Azure Ocean, and the upper floor gives access to a separate artist atelier. On the ground floor are two other suites, also with ocean views, a living room and a home theatre. The kitchen, pantry, maid’s room, laundry and powder room are also on this floor. A gourmet kitchen boasts a wood stove, pizza oven and barbecue. The main villa, caretaker’s house, pergola beach support and car port are integrated with existing vegetation, with no suppression of native trees. On entering Villa Caju, you’re welcomed by cashew trees, making way to majestic coconut and palm trees.
DEL DIOS RANCH California, United States Price: $85million Del Dios Ranch presents an outstanding opportunity to acquire one of the most expansive tracts in coveted Rancho Santa Fe, California. Located in this affluent community, the property comprises 210 acres, a large portion of which is available for development. The residence itself is a magnificent redwood, glass and marble structure, with a foundation and framework of poured-in-place concrete, commanding 360-degree views from its private hilltop location. The property embraces 40 acres of producing Valencia orange groves and includes a lake, tennis court and equestrian facilities.
Noted architect Fred Briggs crafted the prominent home, which is distinguished by soaring, vaulted ceilings, with walls and beams of redwood milled on the property. An entire wing of the house has been dedicated to a magnificent indoor pool and spa, while the master suite occupies a private second level. Three en-suite bedrooms are located on a separate first-floor wing. Approached via a long driveway surrounded by mature landscaping and a brook, the home is far removed from the main road. Situated in the prized section of Rancho Santa Fe known as The Covenant, the estate is one of the largest offerings available in the area.
SUNSET RIDGE Colorado, United States Price: $32.5million Sunset Ridge’s sense of arrival can only be described as awe-inspiring – cliff-side, on a private peninsula, with a breathtaking mountainous panorama. The residence’s bold, yet simplistic, linear architecture naturally draws a first-time visitor to a glass entryway door, offering a first hint of the refinement of finishes and viewscape beyond. The owner, along with the renowned Aspen architect,
Bill Poss, has artfully designed a residence that not only frames the view, but seemingly integrates the mountains as an intrinsic element to the structure. Overlooking a pond reflecting the mountain peaks beyond, and fed by a cascading stream running beneath the master suite bridge over waterfalls to the pond below, finishes and appointments were painstakingly and globally sourced by the design team.
To find out more about Christie’s International Real Estate and discover some of its latest properties, visit www.christiesrealestate.com
ROYAL OBSERVATORY GREENWICH
As winter comes around once more, there’s no better time to take advantage of all that London has to offer. This season, many of its venues will be putting a contemporary, and even futuristic, spin on things, as well as harking back to golden ages gone by. Here are 10 events you won’t want to miss
here’s nothing like a crisp winter walk through
1970s, whereas the London Transport Museum takes a look
London in the colder weather. Whether you’re
back at how the capital was shaped by its world-famous urban
browsing the shops for that dream outfit, enjoying
design and iconography.
a leisurely stroll along the Thames or through
Elsewhere, The Design Museum’s Fear and Love showcase
the city’s Royal Parks, or wining and dining the night away
reveals how contemporary designers are continuing to define a
with dinner and a show, you’re in for a real treat this season,
series of complex contemporary issues today. Looking ahead,
as the capital comes alive with a whole new host of
King’s Cross Theatre is putting on Lazarus, based on sci-fi
productions and exhibitions.
novel The Man Who Fell to Earth, plus the Royal Observatory
Over the coming months, expect to see some enthralling pieces of work that explore our innovative past, present and
Greenwich returns with its leading astrophotography competition. All of this, plus no shortage of hilarious comedies and
future. At The Photographers’ Gallery, you can learn all about
toe-tapping musicals, can be found in the following pages.
the history of the trailblazing feminist art movement of the
Read on for a selection of our top picks that are coming up…
WHAT'S ON TALES UNTIL SUNDAY JANUARY 8 V&A MUSEUM OF CHILDHOOD Set in the context of fairy-tales and children’s stories, this series of 12 images by Hackney photographer Sonya Hurtado explores the imaginary world of childhood. The pictures are conceived almost like paintings, in which intricate digital collages and thought-provoking messages clash in a riot of colour and fantasy. Inspiration from surrealism, film, graffiti and more is expressed through manipulating shadow, light and colour, creating a playful and, at times, almost sinister feel. The work attempts to recreate the atmosphere of loneliness, fear and drudgery seen in a child’s imagined world. www.vam.ac.uk/moc
V&A MUSEUM OF CHILDHOOD
FEMINIST AVANT-GARDE OF THE 1970s UNTIL SUNDAY JANUARY 15 THE PHOTOGRAPHERS’ GALLERY Witness the ground-breaking practices that shaped the feminist art movement with this expansive exhibition, which comprises 48 international female artists, and over 150 major works from the Verbund Collection in Vienna. Alongside established practitioners like Valie Export, Cindy Sherman, Francesca Woodman and Martha Rosler, the presentation includes the likes of Katalin Ladik, Nil Yalter, Birgit Jürgenssen and Sanja Ivekovi. A focus on photographs, collage works, performances, films and videos reflects on a time when emancipation, gender equality and civil rights protest movements became part of public discourse. www.thephotographersgallery.org.uk
LAZARUS UNTIL SUNDAY JANUARY 22 KING’S CROSS THEATRE Inspired by the book The Man Who Fell to Earth by Walter Tevis, Lazarus focuses on Thomas Newton (Michael C Hall), a ‘man’ unable to die and haunted by a past love. We follow Newton during the course of a few days, when the arrival of another lost soul might finally set him free. Co-written by the late David Bowie and containing a number of his songs both old and new, this transfer from Broadway to the West End sees Hall reprise his role opposite Michael Esper and Sophia Anne Caruso. www.lazarusmusical.com
3 THE PHOTOGRAPHERS' GALLERY
SCHOOL OF ROCK UNTIL SUNDAY FEBRUARY 12 NEW LONDON THEATRE Based on the 2003 film, School of Rock makes its way to the West End as a hilarious
WHAT'S ON new musical. Andrew Lloyd Webber and Julian Fellowes bring the story of Dewey Finn to life – a failed, wannabe rock star who decides to earn a few extra bucks by posing as a substitute teacher at a prestigious prep school, where he turns a class of straight-A students into a ‘guitar-shredding, bass-slapping, mind-blowing rock band’. This high-octane, heart-stirring smash debuts 14 new songs, together with all of the movie’s original hits. www.schoolofrockthemusical.com
LONDON TRANSPORT MUSEUM
DESIGNOLOGY: SHAPING LONDON UNTIL SUNDAY APRIL 23 LONDON TRANSPORT MUSEUM Celebrate London’s internationally recognised iconography at Designology: Shaping London, which measures the influence that thoughtful and persuasive design has had on our daily experiences of the urban environment. Immersive displays and items never seen before unearth the familiarity of everyday design, while historical and contemporary innovation is uncovered in posters from the golden age of travel. Design lovers will be able to see early and modern examples of tube maps, plus tickets and signage give visitors the chance to discover the art and aesthetics behind the functional and familiar. www.ltmuseum.co.uk
INSIGHT ASTRONOMY PHOTOGRAPHER OF THE YEAR 2016 UNTIL SUNDAY JUNE 25 ROYAL OBSERVATORY GREENWICH 7 8
ROYAL OBSERVATORY GREENWICH
The biggest international astrophotography competition returns for its eighth year, presenting the 31 prize winners and 140 shortlisted images. Over 4,500 entries were received from 80 countries worldwide, capturing all manner of celestial spectacles, from moons, stars and planets, to galaxies, nebulae and some of the great astronomical events of the last year. Among this year’s highlights are Twilight Aurora by György Soponyai from Hungary; M94: Deep Space Halo by Nicolas Outters from France; and From Maurolycus to Moretus by Jordi Delpeix Borrell from Spain. www.rmg.co.uk/royal-observatory
NICE FISH TUESDAY NOVEMBER 15 TO SATURDAY FEBRUARY 11, HAROLD PINTER THEATRE
Direct from a sold-out season in New York, Academy Award and BAFTA winner Mark Rylance arrives in the West End for this hit new comic play. Nice Fish is co-written by Rylance and set on a frozen Minnesota lake, where the ordinary lives of Ron (Rylance) and Erik (Jim Lichtscheidl) are comically exposed during an ice fishing expedition. The full New York cast
WHAT'S ON will transfer to London for a limited 13-week run of the sublimely playful, profound and funny production, in which the ordinary and extraordinary collide. www.nicefishtheplay.co.uk
DREAMGIRLS SATURDAY NOVEMBER 19 TO SATURDAY MARCH 11, SAVOY THEATRE
13 THE DESIGN MUSEUM
More than three decades after the original Broadway production, the sensational Tony Award winner Dreamgirls comes to the Savoy Theatre for its UK premiere. Glee’s Amber Riley stars as Effie White in the iconic musical, which charts the tumultuous journey of a young female singing trio from Chicago called The Dreams, who learn the hard lesson that show business is as tough as it is fabulous. This much-anticipated staging features the classic songs And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going, I Am Changing, Listen and One Night Only. www.dreamgirlswestend.com
FEAR AND LOVE: REACTIONS TO A COMPLEX WORLD THURSDAY NOVEMBER 24 TO SUNDAY APRIL 23, THE DESIGN MUSEUM A total of 11 installations are presented in this opening exhibit of The Design Museum in Kensington. Hailing from some of the most thought-provoking designers and architects working today, these newly commissioned works look at a spectrum of issues that have come to define our time, including networked sexuality, sentient robots, slow fashion and settled nomads. The show demonstrates how design is deeply connected not just to commerce and culture, but also to urgent underlying issues that inspire fear and love. www.designmuseum.org
CARMEL BUCKLEY AND MARK HARRIS: SPARROW COME BACK HOME TUESDAY DECEMBER 6 TO SUNDAY FEBRUARY 5, INSTITUTE OF CONTEMPORARY ARTS Head to the ICA Fox Reading Room for its continued run of retrospectives that examine archive, legacy and heritage. This exposition will show representations of calypso singer Mighty Sparrow’s records, beside an archive of printed material relating to his music, revealing the depth of calypso culture. Artists Carmel Buckley and Mark Harris will install their work of 228 ceramic tiles, each approximately the size of an LP, depicting the fronts and backs of record covers from Sparrow’s entire career. www.ica.org.uk
INSTITUTE OF CONTEMPORARY ARTS
18 CREDITS: 1. BRAD GOLDPAINT 2. DENNIS GILBERT 3. LYNN HERSHMAN LEESON 4. MARY BETH EDELSON 5 - 6. KATE ELLIOTT 7. IVAN SLADE 8. JAN R OLSEN 9. GILES ROCHOLL 10. SEAN GOEBEL 11. NICHOLAS ROEMMELT 12. ZHOU MI 13. ALEX MORRIS VISUALISATION 14. OFFICE FOR POLITICAL INNOVATION 15. YORAM RESHEF 16. LUKE HAYES 17 - 18. VICTORIA ERDELEVSKAYA