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VOLUME V / ISSUE II / FEBRUARY 2021

WOMEN'S ARGENTINE OPEN

A L H A B T O O R ' S I F Z A S I LV E R C U P S A R A S O TA P O LO C L U B

LOVE ISSUE

MADONNA LIVING FOR LOVE

PUTTING A PRICE TAG ON LIFE 2021'S HOTTEST DATING STATUS HAUTE COUTURE REPORT FROM PARIS PPE DESIGNED BY ATHLETES FOR ATHLETES

WHAT PEOPLE THINK ABOUT YOU SHOULD MATTER CREATIVE & COMFORTABLE WORK-FROM-HOME HACKS

SAY GOODBYE TO BACK FAT POINTS + ALL-YOU-CAN-STAY IN MALDIVES TOP RESORTS


VOLUME V / ISSUE II / FEBRUARY 2021

Ambassador Claude-Alix Bertrand Publisher

Joshua Jakobitz Editor-in-Chief

Claire Barrett

Head of Photography

Eva Espresso

Contributing Photographer

Cezar Kusik

Wine Contributor

Raphael K. Dapaah Art Contributor

Jyoti Paintel

Spiritual Contributor

Stanley Pierre-Etienne Style Contributor

Anne-Isabelle Saint-Pierre Style Contributor

Philippe Lucas

Luxury Contributor Brand Representatives Anne-Isabelle Saint-Pierre - Dubai Michael J. Snell - The Hamptons Stanley Pierre-Etienne Caribbean Sara Ali - London Jessica Foret Wax - Santa Fe Charles Ward - Montecito K & Co. Media - Los Angeles Contributing Photographers Al Habtoor Media

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Gregory Bertrand Copy Editor

Katerina Morgan

Contributing Photographer

Michael J. Snell

Lifestyles Contributor

Charles Ward

Mansions of the Month Curator

Joey Velez

Wellness Columnist

Brett Chody

Trends Contributor

William Smith

Philanthropy Contributor

Elle Chrysler

Polo Contributor Polo Lifestyles is a publication of HT Polo Publishing Co. 995 Detroit Avenue, Suite A Concord, CA 94518 Content Copyright Š Polo Lifestyles 2020 All Rights Reserved. For information or to advertise Contact editor@htpolo.com Read online at www.pololifestyles.com Cover Photo of Madonna by Steven Klein


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INTERNATIONAL POLO CLUB The Ylvisaker Cup The Inglehart Cup THE GAUNTLET OF POLO U.S. Polo Women's Open Championship GRAND CHAMPIONS POLO CLUB The Sterling Cup - High Goal Limited Edition 12 Goal Series The $100,000 World Cup by Audi The All-Star Challenge The Grand Champions Cup The Palm Beach Open GHANTOOT RACING & POLO CLUB Al Amal Polo Day for Charity HH President of UAE Polo Cup MARRAKECH POLO CLUB International Women's Day Polo Cup AL HABTOOR POLO CLUB UAE National Day Cup Sir Winston Churchill Cup

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SCOREBOARDS & COCKTAILS S O C I A L D I S T A N C I N G P O L O

WOMEN'S ARGENTINE OPEN EXCLUSIVE PHOTOS FROM PALERMO page 38 POLO LIFESTYLES EDITORS & CONTRIBUTORS

Ambassador Claude-Alix Bertrand Publisher Polo Lifestyles @haiti_polo_captain

Elle Chrysler

Polo Contributor U.S. Polo Connection @ellechrysler

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Josh Jakobitz

Editor-in-Chief Polo Lifestyles @joshuajakobitz

Charles Ward

Mansions of the Month IdeaWorks Global @ideaworksglobal

Claire Barrett

Head of Photography

Claire Barrett Photography

@clairebarrettphoto

Eva Espresso Photographer

Eva Espresso Photography

@eva.espresso

Raphael K. Dapaah

Jyoti Paintel

Art Contributor Dapaah Gallery @dapaahgallery

Spiritual Contributor Polo Lifestyles @jyotipaintel

Michael J. Snell

Gregory Bertrand

Lifestyles Contributor MJS Groupe @agnello_1

Copy Editor Polo Lifestyles @bertrand7367

Cezar Kusik

Wine Contributor Polo Lifestyles @cezartastesearth

Joey Velez

Brett Chody

Trends Contributor Polo Lifestyles @brettchody

William Smith

Wellness Columnist

Philanthropy Contributor

@velezmentalhealth

@willismith_2000

Velez Mental Performance May & Stanley Smith Charitable Trust


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Are two masks more effec- Vernissage Profile: Oluwole Maldives' All-You-Can-Stay exclusive packages pg 136 Omofemi page 156 tive than one? page 56

Photos: Paris HauteCouture shows page 110

MADONNA

THE ICONIC MATERIAL GIRL AND MOTHER OF SIX REMAINS BOTH AS RELEVANT AND AS ELUSIVE AS EVER, BUT THANKS TO SOCIAL MEDIA, WE NOW KNOW MORE ABOUT HER - AND HER FAMILY - THAN EVER BEFORE. PAGE 92 page 19


DUBAI

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E HAVE A BIG CONFERENCE TABLE AT THE OFFICE WHERE I LIKE TO HOLD EDITORIAL MEETINGS. FOR THE LAST YEAR, MOST OF THOSE MEETINGS HAVE BEEN HELD VIRTUALLY. I STILL SIT AT MY SPOT AT THE TABLE FOR THESE ZOOM AND FACETIME SESSIONS BECAUSE I AM A CREATURE OF HABIT. Since the earliest days of my journalism career, sitting around the table to discuss stories, covers, assignments, news and tips has been an important milestone in my day or week. As a newspaper reporter in the early 2000s, each afternoon, we gathered in the conference room to pitch the stories we’d been working on to the editor. The weekly schedule for the last year, especially, has helped me to maintain a routine and a semblance of normalcy in an upside-down world. Last week; however, was the first week that I caught myself asking, Is it Thursday? Or Friday? I had to check my phone calendar. Has a year of forcing my normal activities to carry on despite everything finally catching up with me? Have my days and weeks finally slumped into the monotonous drone that friends complained about in 2020? Maybe it’s just a January thing, I finally thought as I stared out at the storm clouds gathering to drop snow on the mountains and rain in the valleys of Northern California. As the days tick away until February, a month that brings us Cupid and St. Valentine, I can’t help but marvel at what I’ve learned about love over the last 12 months. Love is the friend who answers the phone at 3 a.m. Love is the bottle of expensive lotion left on the bedside table for washedtoo-many-times, dried-out hands. Love is ordering Thai food delivered for dinner. Love is when someone asks, “How are you doing?” And then listens (borrowed from Meghan Markle). Love is what we put into every issue of Polo Lifestyles, whether it’s February or July or October. Our team loves what they – and we, collectively – do. From taste-making to wine tasting, every story and photograph is a labor of love. On the topic of love this month, we decided to explore love as it relates to health status a.k.a. the coronavirus vaccine. “Vaccinated” has suddenly created a new, albeit temporary, social class for those fortunate enough to have the connections and hook ups. Love and connections are wildly important post-vaccine. The world’s number one status update on major dating apps is, you guessed it, “Vaccinated.” That just speaks for itself. "Living for Love" - and what that means nowadays - is the theme of our feature on Madonna, in which she talks family, philanthropy and of course, coronavirus. Josh Jakobitz josh@pololifestyles.com


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VOLUME V / ISSUE II / FEBRUARY 2021

baccarat Set the Valentine's table with beautiful Baccarat in clear and red crystal

the_real_iman Iman discusses being an immigrant in America with Bazaar magazine

frevonyc French fine-dining hidden behind a painting in an NYC art gallery page 24

archwell The Duke and Duchess of Sussex launched the Archwell Foundation and partnered with Chef Jose Andres

vancleefarpels If these equestrian-themed pieces don't make you smile, count to 10 and try again

globalpolo The Ylvisaker Cup is under way and viewable on globalpolo.com

chanelofficial The couture house of Chanel closed the Spring 2021 Couture Show with horse at the Grand Palais

variety Sex and the City will return to TV on HBO Max... but the original foursome will be a threesome

iconaircraft New models of ICON Aircraft come with state-of-the-art GPS navigation from Garmin


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Click and comment on our choices... tag @pololifestyles. We will share noteworthy comments with you next month.

drinksanddrinking Not only gorgeous and seasonally charming, this creation is refreshing and delicious

wheelsup8760 Ready to go? Safely? Private aviation is key to travel for those who can afford it

billionairehouse These views from the most expensive listing in San Francisco just can't be beat

hypebeast What won't Apple think of next? And will you reserve yours or stand in line when they're available?

youngblackequestrians Hey, is that a carrot? The winter season - minus snow polo - will largely be spectator-free polo

madonna This month's cover girl is Living for Love all over again, talking about Malawi and education

mariotestino From the Mario Testino archives, vintage equestrian shots from around the world

artbyrewa REWA, this month's Vernissage alumna, is currently showing in Los Angeles

shauny80

Lifestyle curator Shaun Rajah makes memories with speciality deliveries around the Chicago area page 25


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IF Z A SI LV E R CUP DAY 2 QUA LI F YI NG R OUND A L HA BTOOR P OLO RE S ORT & CLU B

ZE DA N PO LO TEA M M EETS DUBAI WO LV ES TEA M page 28

F I NAL : D U B AI WO LVE S 10 / 7 ZE DAN PO LO


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VOLUME V / ISSUE II / FEBRUARY 2021

I F Z A S I LV E R C L U B D AY 2 AL HABTOOR POLO RESORT & CLUB, DUBAI

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HE SECOND DAY OF THE IFZA SILVER CUP 2021 DELIVERED A THRILLING MATCH BETWEEN ZEDAN POLO TEAM AND DUBAI WOLVES. Zedan Polo team had a strong start as Geronimo Del Carril scored the first goal and had a four goal advantage by page 30

the end of the second chukker. The Dubai Wolves by Cafu made an impressive comeback at the third chukker with two goals from Alejandro Muzzio. Habtoor Al Habtoor, patron of the team, showed grit as he ended the third chukker with a goal, closing in on Zedan Polo. The excitement kicked up a notch with an excellent pass from Habtoor that allowed Muzzio to score the goal

that placed the teams tied at 6 goals. The Dubai Wolves took off at the final chukker with back to Match progression: 1 - 2 | 1 - 5  | 4 - 5 | 6 - 6 | 10 - 7 Top scorer of the match: Geronimo del Carril, 5 goals and it was the goal from Habtoor that sealed the win for the team at 10 goals to 7.


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I F Z A S I L V E R C U P E A R LY R O U N D S

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PHOTOS COURTESY AL HABTOOR POLO RESORT & CLUB

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I F Z A S I L V E R C U P E A R LY R O U N D S

PHOTOS COURTESY AL HABTOOR POLO RESORT & CLUB

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The advanced electric fastback


VOLUME V / ISSUE II / FEBRUARY 2021

WO ME N ' S OP E N DE AR G E N T I N A PA L E R M O

SHOT F O R P OLO LIFE ST YLE S BY

K AT ER I N A M O RGA N

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WOMEN'S OPEN DE ARGENTINA 2020

P H O T O G R A P H E D B Y K AT E R I N A M O R G A N F O R P O LO L I F E S T Y L E S

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WOMEN'S OPEN DE ARGENTINA 2020

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P H O T O G R A P H E D B Y K AT E R I N A M O R G A N F O R P O LO L I F E S T Y L E S

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WOMEN'S OPEN DE ARGENTINA 2020

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P H O T O G R A P H E D B Y K AT E R I N A M O R G A N F O R P O LO L I F E S T Y L E S

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WOMEN'S OPEN DE ARGENTINA 2020

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P H O T O G R A P H E D B Y K AT E R I N A M O R G A N F O R P O LO L I F E S T Y L E S

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VOLUME V / ISSUE II / FEBRUARY 2021

SAR ASOTA POLO CLU B' S WAY N E B ROWN MEMOR I AL

Whiskey Pond defeated Hillcroft Farm in the final of the Wayne Brown Memorial; MVP: Toto Collardin of Whiskey Pond; Best Playing Pony: “Regia” played by Ramon Collardin of Whiskey Pond; photos by: Julio Aguilar

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SA R AS OTA POLO CLU B'S WAYN E B R OWN MEMORIA L

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VOLUME V / ISSUE II / FEBRUARY 2021

ONE MASK IS GOOD.

WOULD TWO BE BETTER?

HEA LT H E X P E RTS DOUBLE DOWN ON ADVICE F O R S LOW IN G TH E S PREAD OF C O R ON AVIRU S

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OOTBALL COACHES DO IT. RECENTLY INAUGURATED ELECTED OFFICIALS DO IT. EVEN SCIENCE-SAVVY SENATORS DO IT. AS CASES OF THE CORONAVIRUS CONTINUE TO SURGE ON A GLOBAL SCALE, SOME OF THE WORLD'S MOST PROMINENT PEOPLE HAVE BEGUN TO DOUBLE UP ON MASKS — A MOVE THAT RESEARCHERS SAY IS INCREASINGLY BEING BACKED UP BY DATA.

Double-masking isn’t necessary for everyone. But for people with thin or flimsy face coverings, “if you combine multiple layers, you start achieving pretty high efficiencies” of blocking viruses from exiting and entering the airway, said Linsey Marr, an expert in virus transmission at Virginia Tech and an page 56

author on a recent commentary laying out the science behind mask-wearing. Of course, there’s a trade-off: At some point, “we run the risk of making it too hard to breathe,” she said. But there is plenty of breathing room before mask-wearing approaches that extreme. A year into the Covid-19 pandemic, the world looks very different. More than 90 million confirmed coronavirus infections have been documented worldwide, leaving millions dead and countless others with lingering symptoms, amid ongoing economic hardships and shuttered schools and businesses. New variants of the virus have emerged, carrying genetic changes that appear to enhance their ability to spread from person to person.

from whom, the virus will spread. Through all that change, researchers have held the line on masks. “Americans will not need to be wearing masks forever,” said Dr. Monica Gandhi, an infectious disease physician at the University of California, San Francisco, and an author on the new commentary. But for now, they will need to stay on, delivering protection both to mask-wearers and to the people around them.

And while several vaccines have now cleared regulatory hurdles, the roll out of injections has been sputtering and slow — and there is not yet definitive evidence to show that shots will have a substantial impact on how fast, and Tom Cruise greets fans while wearing two masks


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SOME OF THE WORLD'S MOST PROMINENT PEOPLE HAVE BEGUN TO DOUBLE UP ON MASKS — A MOVE THAT RESEARCHERS SAY IS INCREASINGLY BEING BACKED UP BY DATA.

The arguments for masking span several fields of science, including epidemiology and physics. A bevy of observational studies have suggested that widespread mask-wearing can curb infections and deaths on an impressive scale, in settings as small as hair salons and at the level of entire countries. One study, which tracked state policies mandating face coverings in public, found that known Covid cases waxed and waned in near-lockstep with mask-wearing rules. Another, which followed coronavirus infections among health care workers in Boston, noted a drastic drop in the number of positive test results after masks became a universal fixture among staff. And a study in Beijing found that face masks were 79 percent effective at blocking transmission from infected people to their close contacts. Recent work by researchers like Marr is now pinning down the basis of these links on a microscopic scale. The science, she said, is fairly intuitive:

Respiratory viruses like the coronavirus, which move between people in blobs of spittle and spray, need a clear conduit to enter the airway, which is crowded with the types of cells the viruses infect. Masks that cloak the nose and mouth inhibit that invasion. The point is not to make a mask airtight, Marr said. Instead, the fibers that comprise masks create a haphazard obstacle course through which air — and any infectious cargo — must navigate. “The air has to follow this tortuous path,” Marr said. “The big things it’s carrying are not going to be able to follow those twists and turns.” Experiments testing the extent to which masks can waylay inbound and outbound spray have shown that even fairly basic materials, like cloth coverings and surgical masks, can be at least 50 percent effective in either direction. Several studies have reaffirmed the no-

tion that masks seem to be better at guarding people around the mask-wearer than mask-wearers themselves. “That’s because you’re stopping it right at the source,” Marr said. But, motivated by recent research, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has noted that there are big benefits for those who don masks as well. The best masks remain N95s, which are designed with ultrahigh filtration efficiency. But they remain in short supply for health workers, who need them to safely treat patients. Layering two less specialized masks on top of each other can provide comparable protection. Marr recommended wearing face-hugging cloth masks over surgical masks, which tend to be made with more filter-friendly materials but fit more loosely. An alternative is to wear a cloth mask with a pocket that can be stuffed with filter material, like the kind page 57


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found in vacuum bags. But wearing more than two masks, or layering up on masks that are already very good at filtering, will quickly bring diminishing returns and make it much harder to breathe normally. Other tweaks can enhance a mask’s fit, such as ties that secure the fabric around the back of the head, instead of relying on ear loops that allow masks to hang and gape. Nose bridges, which can help the top of a mask to fit more snugly, offer a protective boost as well. Achieving superb fit and filtration “is really simple,” Gandhi said. “It doesn’t need to involve anything fancy.” No mask is perfect, and wearing one does not obviate other public health measures like physical distancing and

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good hygiene. “We have to be honest that the best response is one that requires multiple interventions,” said Jennifer Nuzzo, a public health expert at Johns Hopkins University. Mask-wearing remains uncommon in some parts of the country, in part because of politicization of the practice. But experts noted that model behavior by the nation’s leaders might help to turn the tide. In December, the USA's then-President-elect Joe Biden implored Americans to wear masks for his first 100 days in office, and said he would make doing so a requirement in federal buildings and on planes, trains and buses that cross state lines. His administration put those requirements into effect immediately following his inauguration on January 20, 2021.

A large review on the evidence behind masking, published this month in the journal PNAS, concluded that masks are a key tool for reducing community transmission, and is “most effective at reducing spread of the virus when compliance is high.” Part of the messaging might also require more empathy, open communication and vocal acknowledgment that “people don’t enjoy wearing masks,” Nuzzo said. Without more patience and compassion, simply doubling down on restrictions to “fix” poor compliance will backfire: “No policy is going to work if no one is going to adhere.” Katherine J. Wu originally for The NY Times. Used with permission.

Pedestrians in New York's Central Park, where COVID-19 ravaged the local population last spring.


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P H O T O G R A P H S C O U R T E S Y A E R I O N C O R P O R AT I O N

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IT'S ESSENTIAL CREATIVE & COMFORTABLE WORK-FROM-HOME HACKS REDUCE SCREEN TIME, LEARN YOUR BEST ANGLES AND HOW TO LIGHT THEM AND GET COMFORTABLE... BECAUSE IT'S NOT OVER YET.

BRETT CHODY

T

Trends Contributor

@brettchody

HE CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC HAS REVOLUTIONIZED THE WAYS THAT WE LIVE AND WORK, HINGED ON AN UNSEEN BUT TERRIFYING FORCE SO SUDDEN THAT ENTIRE INDUSTRIES WERE FORCED TO UPEND TRADITIONAL 8-5 STRATEGIES FOR THE WORKDAY. GONE ARE COMMUTES AND EXECUTIVE PARKING SPACES, COFFEE-BREAK GOSSIP IN THE HALLWAYS AND AFTER-WORK HAPPY HOURS.

For those with the means, or at least a generous corporate reimbursement allowance, we’ve discovered various means to an end. Instacart orders have replaced the typical runs to the grocery store, daily commutes to work involve walking from one room to another and the workout classes we once attended are now completed in our living rooms, balconies or gardens. COVID-19 has caused us to get creative when it comes to improving our day-to-day lives at home, which has increased the demand for products that were considered arbitrary, unnecessary and even, dare we say, nerdy just one year ago today. The first thing that comes to mind are blue light glasses. Since we work from home all day on computers and spend all night watching TV and scrolling on

our phones, our screen time skyrocketed in 2020. Staring at devices all day is not only detrimental for our eyes but also wreaks havoc on our sleep schedules. Thus, enter blue light glasses. Studies have shown that these glasses– equipped with special lenses that filter the destructive blue light that our devices emit– reduce eyestrain, protect our eyes and improve our sleep quality. According to optical company Zenni, sales for their blue light glasses have increased 60 percent over the past two years– not to mention they sold a whopping 2 million pairs in 2020 alone. Computer accessories and desk en-

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hancements also skyrocketed in popularity at the onset of the pandemic. With unknown millions pivoting from traditional office spaces to their own work-from-home station, many invested in external monitors, laptop stands, Bluetooth computer mice and even stand-up desks. According to Glimpse’s COVID-19 Consumer Impact Tracker, there was a 160 percent increase in interest in computer monitors in March alone. On the topic of working from home, the copious amounts of on-camera Zoom meetings call for desperate needs for better lighting in homes never designed for Hollywood production. Ring lights– which have been used by photographers for decades– are circular, electric bright lights that reduce shadows and provide an even glow– perfect to set up behind your computer while you’re on-camera. Though it may sound trivial, hundreds

of thousands of Americans hopped on the ring light train in the early stages of working from home. In May 2020, ring lights topped the Cell Phones and Accessories charts on Amazon for weeks on end, and as the pandemic continues to worsen across the U.S., it doesn’t look like sales will die down anytime soon. As we all know too well, COVID brought the closure of gyms and workout studios and the rise of athome fitness. Americans who relied on SoulCycle classes, appointments with personal trainers or CrossFit sessions for their daily sweat were forced to improvise and complete workouts from the comfort of their homes. Matt Powell, vice president of market research company NPD, told the Washington Post earlier this month that, “As soon as the lockdowns took effect, the home-fitness business took off like wildfire.” According to NPD data, the health and

fitness equipment revenue more than doubled, reaching $2.3 billion from March to October of 2020. Americans bought a range of at-home equipment, from inexpensive dumbbell sets to thousand-dollar machines. Peloton, the seven-year-old American company that makes high tech at-home bikes and treadmills, thrived in 2020 despite its higher-than-average market price point. The company reported an incredible 172 percent surge in sales in its fiscal fourth quarter, and it predicted that it would rake in sales between $3.5 billion and $3.65 billion in 2021. While we can only hope we are nearing the end of the COVID-19 pandemic, products like these that saved us through lockdowns and stay-at-home orders will likely be omnipresent in our lives for the foreseeable future. BRETT CHODY TRENDS CONTRIBUTOR POLO LIFESTYLES 2021

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PPE DESIGNED BY ATHLETES FOR ATHLETES U ND ER A R MOU R A N D " T H E RO C K " J UST L AUN CHE D A FACE MASK D E SI GN E D F O R AT H L E T ES W IT H IM PR E SSIV E S PE CS FOR YO UR N EX T T R A IN IN G S E S S IO N

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HE ROCK ISN’T EASING UP ON HIS SUPPORT OF SOCIAL DISTANCING MEASURES. AND HE’S GOT THE FACE MASKS TO PROVE IT. Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and his Project Rock athletic apparel line from Under Armour just launched a reusable face mask designed for athletes. The face-covering is available now on the retailer’s website for $35. The mask, which launched on October 16, is already the No. 1 selling item from the long-standing Project Rock x Under Armor line, according to a post from the man himself on Instagram. Under Armor says the Project Rock face mask “the perfect one for athletes,” calling special attention to the mask’s airflow, cool feel and comfort fit. It’s worth noting that the mask appears to be a variation of Under Armor’s face mask, which launched earlier this week with similar features and an almost identical look. As far as aesthetics go, the navy-blue mask features The Rock’s famous Brahma Bull logo, a staple of any Project Rock launch. But the quality and health specs are what makes this product worth talking about. The three-layer Project Rock face mask has a water-resistant outer layer and an antimicrobial inner layer to keep the mask fresh. A middle layer is made of

polyurethane opencell foam, which lets air through but makes it hard for moisture and sweat to pass. The inner layer and ear loops are also made of innovative cooling fabric for comfort during workouts. Plus, the mask is washable and reusable. The Project Rock mask comes in sizes XS/S through XL/ XXL, guaranteeing a snug yet comfortable fit. A sizing chart on the product page can help you find the perfect size with one simple measurement, as your face mask sizing isn›t likely a thing you know. The mask also has an adjustable nose bridge and stretchy side panels for even more customization. The Rock, who recently battled COVID-19 along with his entire family, has been a vocal advocate for mask-wearing and other safety precautions throughout the pandemic. In a September Instagram video announcing his diagnosis, Johnson stressed the importance of masks in slowing the spread of COVID-19.

“It baffles me that some people out there, including some politicians, will take this idea of wearing masks and make it part of a political agenda,” Johnson said in the video. “It has nothing to do with politics. Wear a mask. It is a fact. It is the right thing to do, and it’s the responsible thing to do.”

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P U T T I N G TO DAY ' S TO P LU X U R Y L I S T I N G S AT T H E F I N G E R T I P S O F H N W B U Y E R S

Polo Lifestyles proudly announces its strategic alliance with Idea Works Global’s luxury guru and famous polo sponsorship marketing powerhouse, Charles Ward. Change your listing from For Sale to Sold by telling the story of your uniquely valuable estate within each Mansions Of The Month feature, be it situated in the greater Miami, Malibu, Montecito, Monaco, Austin, Houston, Dallas, Wellington or Palm Beach - or any other magnificent destination. Reserve your space in forthcoming issues of Polo Lifestyles with Mansions of the Month Curator Charles Ward. Contact Charles: charles@pololifestyles.com Click here to read the Rancho San Carlos case study - After languishing on the real estate market for years, it was a featured property in Polo Lifestyles - and closed less than 60 days later for $63 million dollars. page 70


LOVE IN 2021 VIRTUAL DATE NIGHTS

MAKE YOUR LOVE LIFE SIZZLE LOVE & VACCINES: AN EMERGING SOCIAL CLASS & THE HOTTEST DATING APP STATUS


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VIRTUAL DATE NIGHTS

SWAP OUT 'ROUTINE' FOR 'UNEXPECTED' WITH THESE ROMANTIC IDEAS FOR FEB. 14

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S LONG AS COVID-19 TRENDS CONTINUE AT THE CURRENT PACE, IT IS VERY UNLIKELY THAT BY FEBRUARY 14 OUR SOCIETY WILL HAVE RETURNED TO ANY SEMBLANCE OF NORMAL. IN FACT, LIFE AS WE’VE COME TO UNDERSTAND IT IN 2020 WILL LIKELY CONTINUE FAR LONGER INTO 2021 THAN WE’D ENJOY. To adjust to our new normal, we must accept adjustments for important dates such as Valentine’s. In fact, everyone will be looking for simple ways to make the transition seamless, without missing out on the celebration of the day. So, whether you’re celebrating Valentine’s Day or Galentine’s Day or Single Appreciation Day, here are some safe, virtual and stay-at-home friendly ideas to help make February 14 a memorable one in the midst of a pandemic.

VIRTUAL DINNER FOR TWO The first date idea for Valentine’s Day 2021 is to have a virtual dinner. This page 76

could be food that you have ordered out from a pre-selected restaurant. You could choose to order from the same restaurant and try similar meals or from different restaurants to each try something different and review them. Another option is to pick similar dishes from different restaurants and use the opportunity to see which restaurant serves the better version of that meal. The diversity associated with getting food this way brings flair and interest for a day that would otherwise have passed by. It is a good conversation starter and gives you plenty of time to talk and spend quality time together. In San Francisco, you might try the roasted Chicken for Two from Zuni Café. Specialty delivery service, Gold Belly, brings specialties from all over to your front door: BBQ from Kansas City, decadent desserts from New York’s finest bakeries, or Los Angeles’ best breakfast burrito (amazing any hour of the day) from Cofax. In addition to enjoying delicious dishes with someone special, you’ll also be supporting local restaurants that have been heavily impacted by the restrictions of the pandemic.

BINGE-WATCH SOMETHING SEXY Just as we are on the topic of quality time, it would be a good Valentine’s Day date idea to watch a movie or bingewatch a mini-series or a whole series throughout the day in the safety of your home. A show marathon is a perfect date idea for Valentine’s Day 2021. The process of picking the show and preparing to see it can serve as a bonding session even before the day arrives. Honest commentary about the show and candid conversations as the show goes on will help getting to know each other better. This is an ideal first date, as it is a good icebreaker, but anyone can enjoy a binge-watching marathon. We suggest Netflix’ Bridgerton, with enough romance and passion to heat up your own evening, too.

TAKE A VIRTUAL TRIP As the COVID-19 pandemic has changed circumstances all around the world, many tourist locations are offering virtual journeys and tours of museums, natural wonders, markets and parks. If museums, galleries and parks


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were some of your favorite places to visit pre-pandemic, this is a perfect virtual outing for you. All that is required is to show up to your computer and enjoy the show. Honestly, when the pandemic is over, we’ll probably never want to tour somewhere virtually again, so take advantage of the current popularity and utilize this for Valentine’s Day 2021. Booking the showing simultaneously will make it so that it feels like you are both physically there.

HOST A (ZOOM) THEME PARTY Is a theme party more to your liking on Valentine’s Day? Be it a slumber party, a listening party, a game night party… the possibilities are endless. Just as well, Valentine’s Day 2021 should be no different. Any thematic party can be organized virtually, with as much flexibility as needed or with certain regulations. In advance, plan the theme and dress code to ensure everyone is synchronized. The fun and, honestly, distraction, will help release the tension of not being in the same room. This idea can be modified to whatever specifications you and the party participants come up with together. Get creative!

PICNIC AL FRESCO If you are looking for an outdoor idea, it might be fun to have an outdoor picnic in the backyard or somewhere safe away from large groups of people. A day of spending time in the sun and the outside air is refreshing. It also helps with the cabin fever everyone has been experiencing. If it’s still chilly where you live, throw on a fur coat or cape for the occasion. Bring out the good champagne and pick up some sweets from a local eatery.

Hopefully these date ideas inspire your Valentine’s Day 2021 planning as we all must celebrate love in the midst of a pandemic.

COMPILED BY THE EDITORIAL STAFF POLO LIFESTYLES 2021

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MAKE YOUR LOVE LIFE SIZZLE EXPERTS WEIGH IN ON PANDEMIC LOVE

KEEP YOUR ROMANCE ALIVE

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HETHER YOU’VE BEEN TOGETHER FOR A HANDFUL OF MONTHS OR SEVERAL DECADES, IT’S FAR TOO EASY TO GET SWEPT UP IN THE DAILY INS AND OUTS OF LIFE.

This becomes even more difficult when faced with the stark uncertainty of the coronavirus pandemic, when the attention and energy you’d otherwise give to your relationship is easily directed elsewhere. While it’s not a bad thing to lean into the comfort of an established relationship and some sense of routine during this time, keeping that spark of romance ever-present bodes well for your emotional and physical connection, as well as your mental health. Below we’ve outlined four specific ways you can do just that.

COMMIT SMALL GESTURES OF LOVE “Relationship research has concluded repeatedly that everyday gestures that express fondness and appreciation for your partner are essential to feeling close and connected,” notes Elizabeth page 80

Hale-Rose, LCWS for Privé-Swiss Wellness in Connecticut.

Every person is unique regarding the types of gestures they’ll appreciate most, and you know your partner best. Ideas include: •

Shooting them a lovey text message in the middle of the workday (Even if you’re only a few feet apart)

Having breakfast ready for them on a weekend morning

Tackling a dreaded chore that he or she usually tends to

Delivering a cup of soothing tea to the couch come nightfall

Taking time for little hugs and kisses throughout the day

The increased amount of time you’re spending together provides ample opportunity to make at least one small gesture every day. It will make you feel good to offer these tokens of love, as well.

CHECK-IN WITH YOUR PARTNER REGULARLY Even if you know your partner backward and forward and can usually anticipate their every need, we’re all experiencing something we’ve never

gone through before. If you’re in the beginning of a relationship or still figuring each other out, it’s also important to step back and check-in with your partner. The bottom line is that taking the time to specifically ask your partner what they might need from you during this unprecedented time signals your love for them, fosters a romantic connection, and can help you both weather the storm.  “With life running at normal speed it can be difficult to sense your partner’s needs, but under the umbrella of all this chaos it may be impossible if you don’t actually check in with them,” says Dr. Colleen Mullen, PysD, LMFT, and author. Examples of what you might say:

How can I best support you today/ right now/in these next months?

It looks like you’ve been handling all of this really well, but I just wanted to check in with you to make sure.

Do you want to talk about anything you’re feeling right now? If not now, maybe later?

You can also take this time to share your own concerns or needs with your partner. Being vulnerable will help you both remain on the same page, be a


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when meeting each other’s families or friends. If you’re in a more established relationship, go ahead and crack open an old photo album or your Facebook photo reel, look through old cards or mementos, or simply sit face to face recalling hilarious or heartwarming memories.

PLAN FULL-BLOWN DATE NIGHTS

figurative and literal shoulder to cry on, and will make it easier to practice empathy even when lashing out or getting on each other’s nerves. When life really picks up steam, finding the time (or desire) to be physically intimate can become increasingly difficult. Still, physical intimacy is incredibly important to maintaining romance and deep emotional connection with your partner. And this definitely doesn’t have to always mean sex. Some other ways you might foster a physical connection include the following: •

Kissing and snuggling on the couch

Holding hands on a long walk

Trading five-minute massages

Simply having conversations about physical intimacy can help spark desire and connection, too. You might find that now is a good time to talk about (and/or satisfy) each other’s fantasies or things you’ve been curious about.

Interestingly, having sex has also been linked to reduction in stress hormones.

SIT DOWN AND REMINISCE TOGETHER Looking back at the “good ol’ times” can bring happy memories, make you laugh, and make you remember just how far you two have come together over the months or years. “Brain research informs us that intentionally recalling good times helps strengthen the neural pathways that support well-being. We know that brains store information through an associative process so, in other words, neurons that fire together wire together,” says Hale-Rose. “Intentionally recalling pleasant, sexy, and fun memories with your partner helps associate the feelings generated by these memories with your partner.” If your relationship is relatively new, think back to those initial flirty text conversations, your first few days, or funny moments that might have occurred

We’re clearly spending quantity time with our partners through the coronavirus pandemic, but also make sure you’re taking moments to spend quality time together. “The kicker on this is that, of course, date night is still within the same four walls non-date nights take place, so it will take some creativity to change the set up.” Maybe that means transforming the dining room into a white-linen, candlelit space, pushing the furniture out of the living room to create a dance floor, or setting up an indoor picnic complete with basket and checkered blanket. Movie nights are OK, but also make sure you’re planning events where you can truly engage.  Whatever your date night might entail, Mullan says to focus conversations on each other and to do your best to avoid talking about the virus, fears, money, cabin fever, etc. There’s a time and a place for those conversations (you can even proactively allocate time to discuss these topics) but the purpose of date night is to fall into each other. WENDY GOULD POLO LIFESTYLES 2021 page 81


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LOVE & VACCINES page 84


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PUT A PRICE TAG ON HEALTH THE EMERGING SOCIAL CLASS & HEALTH STATUS

CLAMORING FOR THE VACCINE - BY ANY MEANS POSSIBLE AS A NEW VACCINATED SOCIAL CLASS EMERGES AND ONLINE DATING PROFILES FLEX VACCINATED STATUS

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HE CORONAVIRUS VACCINE WASN’T SUPPOSED TO BE A GOLDEN TICKET. A TIERED AND EFFICIENT ROLL OUT WAS MEANT TO INOCULATE FRONT-LINE WORKERS AND THE MOST VULNERABLE BEFORE THE REST OF SOCIETY. But scattershot and delayed distribution of the still-limited supply now threatens to create a new temporary social class — one that includes not just people who are at higher risk for infection or severe illness and death, but also grocery store customers in Washington; Indonesian influencers; elementary schoolteachers; American celebrities; New York Post reporters and others who, because of their work or because of luck, have been able to get immunized quickly.

Tests of the vaccines show they’re incredibly effective. But people can still get the coronavirus while in the process of getting inoculated and could possibly still spread the virus, especially if they come in close contact with others or stop wearing masks. As a result, as people clamor to get in line for what represents the only real safety from a disease that has killed millions, plenty of individuals who have been vaccinated will patiently wait until they are told it’s safe to gather. But others will feel emboldened to begin to congregate with their vaccinated peers. Some of them will be among the most privileged people in the world. Knightsbridge Circle, a luxury travel service in London that charges 25,000 pounds a year for membership, made waves earlier this month when its founder, Stuart McNeill, told The Telegraph that the club would fly

members who were 65 or older to the United Arab Emirates to receive privately obtained vaccines. (In Britain, the vaccination is only available through the National Health Service.) Since going public with the offer, the club, which arranges luxury experiences and accommodations for its members, has received more than 2,000 applications for membership and thousands of phone calls, emails and social media requests, according to McNeill. He also wrote, in response to emailed questions, that his organization has been approached by “several private jet companies” looking to team with the club to transport the vaccinated. His organization announced that it would begin selling vaccines to people who were not previously members of the club for the price of 10,000 pounds per person, as long as individuals are 65 or older — or can prove that they page 85


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have underlying health conditions. (Knightsbridge Circle will “ask for proof of this when booking,” a spokeswoman wrote in an email.) The vaccines will come as part of a three-week “membership package.” But that package will not include anything beyond the vaccine and transport to and from the airport and vaccination sites. Interested parties will have to book airfare and three weeks’ worth of accommodations themselves. For McNeill’s clients, the real fun will come once the inoculations are done. Some of those who expect to be vaccinated in the U.A.E. have been looking to schedule specialized excursions after they are inoculated, he said, adding: “Desert safari seems to be the most popular.” (Members who travel to the U.A.E. will stay in the country for the required time before a second dose.) McNeill also said that given the uncertainty around staples of the spring page 86

calendar this year — the Royal Ascot, Monaco Grand Prix and Wimbledon — he expects his vaccinated clients to “head to the Mediterranean” earlier than usual. (Top destinations for the company’s clients, he said, included St.-Tropez, Mykonos, Ibiza and Bodrum.) A leisure class of the newly vaccinated will mean that hotels, catering services and other businesses will be scrambling to employ bartenders, servers and other staff who are also vaccinated, the better to ensure the safety of all. A vaccination will begin to represent not only safety from the virus but also, for some, a leg up in the job market. “Just like business partners require background checks for all of our professionals today, a lot of people are going to start wanting to say, ‘Hey, send vaccinated professionals as well,’” said Jamie Baxter, the chief executive of Qwick, an Arizona-based web platform that connects service workers with employers. He said that Qwick had already

started thinking about how to verify which workers on its platform had been vaccinated.

“Haves and Have-Nots” Over 40 million doses of the vaccine have been administered worldwide, mostly to health care workers, first responders and older individuals, many of whom live in nursing homes. The vaccinated class is and will remain a relatively small portion of the population during the first half of 2021. That makes it difficult for economists and businesses to anticipate when people will begin to gather in substantial numbers (in places where they haven’t been doing so already) and what the economic impact of such activity might be. “As people are excited to become vaccinated against SARS-CoV-2, they may be overestimating what that protection means,” said Jennifer Reich, a professor


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at the University of Colorado-Denver who specializes in health policy. “It’s important that they calibrate their expectations and understand that their behavior after immunization still has to be focused on protecting people around them.” But some private event spaces are gearing up for boom times in the spring and summer all the same. Peerspace, a commercial space rental platform (think Airbnb for events and parties), said it is already seeing bookings for its 20,000 locations around the United States, starting in late May. (Jerry Nickelsburg, the director of the U.C.L.A. Anderson Forecast, which issues economic predictions at the opening of each year, said it is “a regulatory question, how soon will those kinds of larger event spaces become available.”) Eric Shoup, the company’s chief executive, said he was interested to see whether cities and states would make special allowances for those who had been inoculated, especially once a significant portion of the population was vaccinated. “There are going to be the haves and have-nots, if you will,” he said. Matt Bendett, Peerspace’s head of operations and strategy, wondered whether one’s vaccination status would be available to share through an app like Apple Wallet. (According to Bloomberg, interest in such applications — essentially, passports that would show proof of immunization — has surged.) “If that’s something that becomes accepted and is not considered a privacy violation of some sort, or we start to see governments kind of changing their tune on how people can use that as verification, I certainly think that’s something we could look at how we would leverage,” he said. Doctors who have been on the terrible front line of the crisis have, through the fact of their exposure, had a preview of the social world that some who are vaccinated could return to fairly soon.

Dr. Alex Tran is an emergency medicine resident physician at Mount Sinai and Elmhurst Hospitals in New York City, where he has worked throughout the pandemic. As of this month, he is fully vaccinated. Given that he and his peers developed antibodies when they were exposed to the virus at the beginning of the crisis, he said, they had not been particularly worried about hanging out with one another. With the vaccine, though, he plans to travel across the country to California to see his parents for the first time in a year. “What I’m waiting for is actually that C.D.C. card that they’re giving out being accepted as a method of entry, whether that be for flights or for restaurants, like indoor dining or whatever it may be,” he said, referring to the verification card that those who are vaccinated receive. “I could see a situation where a club makes it their official policy that you need to show your vaccine card,” Tran added. “But I think that’s just going to open the way up to forged vaccine cards. There’s going to be another market there.” Already, health care workers are finding that vaccination comes with some small perks. On Friday, the N.F.L. announced that a significant percentage of the crowd at Super Bowl LV in Tampa would be vaccinated health care workers, who will receive free tickets. (How large venues will determine who has been vaccinated is still a contentious subject.) Tran also expects vaccination status to become a draw on dating apps. He mentioned that a vaccinated friend updated his dating profile on one of the apps to say, “Dating me is like dating a golden retriever … who’s been vaccinated,” and that it had already attracted a good amount of attention.

The “Hottest Thing” in Dating Dating app companies confirmed that vaccination has become a hot topic on

their platforms. On Tinder, vaccine mentions in user bios rose 258 percent between September and December. “Those who have gotten the vaccine are using their status as a way to spark conversation with potential matches about their experience,” Dana Balch, a Tinder spokeswoman, wrote in an email. On OkCupid, those who indicate that they have already received the vaccine are being liked at double the rate of users who say that they are not interested in getting the vaccine, according to a spokesman for the app, Michael Kaye. “Basically, getting the vaccine is the hottest thing you could be doing on a dating app right now,” Kaye said, adding, “What a world we’re living in.” And social media communities for the newly vaccinated (and those interested in being newly vaccinated) have quickly been established. One subreddit, r/ Covid19VaccineRats, was created last month by Jamal Fares, a humanitarian aid worker in Beirut, where the vaccination has not yet begun. Fares said he started the group to combat rumors and misinformation about the vaccine. Over page 87


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time, he expected it to become a social hub where people might read tales from and about the happily inoculated. “They will start going out, they will start socially interacting, and I presume they’ll start sharing those experiences with others,” he said of the subreddit’s vaccinated members. Reich, the sociologist at the University of ColoradoDenver, said that she was concerned that government officials would enable irresponsible activity by the newly vaccinated. She urged even those who had been vaccinated to restrain themselves until the protection granted by immunization was better understood — or that protection was more widespread — in order to stave off worst-case scenarios. “People are going to feel betrayed if they learn later that they thought they were protected,” she said. “And they killed their grandparents.” JONAH ENGEL BROMWICH SPECIAL TO POLO LIFESTYLES

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LIVING FOR LOVE

THE MATERIAL GIRL HAS LONG-USED EQUESTRIAN MOTIFS IN HER PROMOTION AND PUBLICITY. THE MOST ICONIC SHOTS HAVE BEEN CAPTURED BY STEVE KLEIN OVER THE YEARS, INCLUDING THIS SERIES OF IMAGES. page 92


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LIKE MADONNA

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HE MADE HER NAME AS A QUEEN OF CONTROVERSY, STIRRING UP EQUAL PARTS LAUD AND CRITICISM FOR HER PROVOCATIVE PRESENTATION AND DEMEANOR. IN THE 37 YEARS SINCE HER FIRST RECORD, SIMPLY TITLED MADONNA, DROPPED IN 1983, SHE’S CONSISTENTLY REMAINED AT THE FOREFRONT OF POP CULTURE, GOSSIP, AWARDS SHOWS, RED CARPETS AND TABLOIDS. WE KNEW EVERYTHING ABOUT HER; AND SIMULTANEOUSLY, WE KNEW NOTHING ABOUT THE WOMAN BORN MADONNA LOUISE CICCONE IN BAY CITY, MICHIGAN.

Then came 2020, and like many stars, her activity and lock-down routine was livestreamed on her social media. We suddenly had a portal into Madge’s world – and what a world it is. There was the bizarre, milk-bath quarantine monologue, there was a holiday trip to Malawi – loudly denounced by her critics, but seemingly planned and executed within local and regional coronavirus guidelines; and a whole lot of self-promotion regarding her $1 million donation to the Gates Foundation to fund research for the coronavirus vaccine. The coronavirus is, after all, personal to her. The pandemic ended her 2020 Madame X European tour abruptly when the government of France banned gatherings of more than 1,000 people last year in March. Later, she tested positive for coronavirus antibodies. Without a tour to complete, she focused on philanthropic endeavors

PHOTOGRAPHED BY STEVEN KLEIN

last year, notably her charity Raising Malawi, which is a nod to the native country of four of her children: David, Mercy James, Estere and Stella. In December, she organized a trip, dubbed #Homecoming, to Malawi and documented it on social media. At the time, Malawi was open to foreign travelers and only required a negative coronavirus test result within 10 days of entering the country. Sporting pink hair and an assortment of floral kaftans and safari hats, the Queen of Pop posted 15 Instagram videos from the family’s trip across the Continent. The warmth and fondness that oozes from the posts gives new meaning to her “Living for Love” hit from 2015’s “Rebel Heart” album. She’s endured up-and-down relationship with government officials of Malawi, who have both approved

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LIVING FOR LOVE

high-profile adoptions and barred others, citing fine-print technicalities. In 2018, she boasted that her then-12-year-old son David could be the next president of Malawi. That same year, a spokesperson for Madonna said that the government held a grudge against her charity there. Malawi, one of the world’s poorest nations, is heavily dependent upon organizations and charities like Raising Malawi, but like many developing nations, red tape and special interests join forces to compel foreign-funded projects to work within certain scopes and limitations – at least in times of non-critical crisis. The global pandemic tipped the scales back to the favor of well-funded organizations and charities. Continued on page 100

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LIVING FOR LOVE

WHEN COVID-19 CANCELED HER PLANS FOR A 2020 "MADAME X" TOUR ACROSS EUROPE, MADONNA SHIFTED HER FOCUS TO HER PHILANTHROPIC ENDEAVORS LAST YEAR, NOTABLY HER CHARITY RAISING MALAWI, WHICH IS A NOD TO THE NATIVE COUNTRY OF FOUR OF HER CHILDREN: DAVID, MERCY JAMES, ESTERE AND STELLA. ALONG WITH OLDER SIBLINGS LOURDES AND ROCCO, THEY MAKE THE ICONIC MATERIAL GIRL A FULL-TIME MOTHER OF SIX.

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MADONNA WITH LOURDES AND ROCCO IN THE EARLY 2000S

TRAVELING WITH THE FAMILY PRE-PANDEMIC

MADONNA WITH MERCY JAMES

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IN MALAWI

In any case, Raising Malawi is quietly working within local communities to increase basic, yet effective, measures against the spread of coronavirus. “Frequent handwashing with soap and water remains one of the easiest and more important ways to prevent spread of the coronavirus,” Madge said when we came to the topic of the pandemic and Malawi. Nearly 6 million school-age children in Malawi haven’t participated in classroom learning since March 2020 when the government closed educational institutions to control the spread of coronavirus. Raising Malawi and school construction partner, buildOn, have been retrofitting primary schools to be ready to receive faculty and students again in a safe and practical manner. Madonna, known for her equestrian interests, was photographed for this month’s cover by Steven Klein, a close friend who’s photographed her dozens of times over her career, often with horses. Provocative by nature, Klein captured Madonna positioned behind her equestrian partner, lovingly caressing the pure white tail. In September 2020, Madonna confirmed rumors to be working on a film about her life with writer Diablo Cody and producer Amy Pascal. JOSH JAKOBITZ EDITOR-IN-CHIEF POLO LIFESTYLES 2020

IN MALAWI page 100

P H OTO G R A P H S C O U RT E SY R A I S I N G M A L AW I


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PHOTOGRAPHED BY STEVEN KLEIN

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PHOTOGRAPHY BY MERT ALAS AND MARCUS PIGGOTT

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FASHION & STYLE

FASHION-FORWARD & SOCIALLY RESPONSIBLE PARIS HAUTE-COUTURE SHOWS page 105


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FASHION-FORWARD & SOCIALLY RESPONSIBLE

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ERHAPS THE OLDEST PRACTICE OF ARTISTIC FASHION, THE USE OF MASKS IS UBIQUITOUS ACROSS THE WORLD. VERY ANCIENT CULTURES INDEPENDENTLY DEVELOPED MASKS FOR USE IN RITUALS AND CEREMONIES. CONSIDERING THE DEEP CONNECTION BETWEEN THE FACE AND IDENTITY, THIS COMES AS NO SURPRISE.

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By covering up one’s face, a mask deceives, conceals an identity. By this same token, it gives its wearer (and viewer) otherwise inaccessible creative freedom, allowing them to abstract from the body and take on a new identity. A mask may even help someone become a more true version of their own self. Today, of course, the use of masks is ubiquitous across the world as a defense against the coronavirus’ spread. At first blush, this doesn’t seem connected to fashion, but we’ve seen some designers turn this challenge into unique oppor-

tunities to explore identity. Fashion has always developed in conversation with social and historical developments. So it’s fascinating to consider and begin to see how this moment of crisis will change our collective consciousness of identity and expression. Always concerned with the future, designers Marine Serre and Rick Owens have been consistently incorporating masks into their collections for at least the last few seasons. Marine Serre especially has used it to warn of climate catastrophe and investigate the


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ways humanity and its culture will have to respond to a rapidly changing planet. Maison Margiela used a translucent cloth to create an elegant and mysterious image of romance reminiscent of Magritte’s famous painting “The Lovers II.” We haven’t seen too many other designers incorporate masks into their runway shows, perhaps thinking it was too early

to capitalize on the pandemic. Still, those who did responded more directly to it by using straightforward shapes that echoed surgical or N95 masks. Anna Sui, Atushi Nakashima, Collina Strada, and more created masks with patterns that cohered with their entire springtime looks. Of course, the street is where we’ve seen the most frequent use of masks.

The most obvious choice is black – it doesn’t draw too much attention, and it goes with everything – but there are some opportunities to get colorful and creative as well. We hope the world can use this moment of collective concealment to reflect on both our common identity as humans and our uniqueness as individuals and emerge ready to love each other and our Earth. Be safe, and keep wearing your mask! page 107


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ROYAL OAK CONCEPT FROSTED GOLD FLYING TOURBILLON CASE Hammered 18-carat pink gold case, glareproofed sapphire crystal and caseback, crown set with a translucent sapphire cabochon. DIAL Multi-layers graded blue dial with sunray pattern, pink gold Royal Oak hands with luminescent coating. BRACELET Hand-stitched “large square scale” blue alligator strap with hammered 18-carat pink gold AP folding clasp. Additional shiny blue rubber strap.

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COLLECTIONS FROM PARIS

HAUTE-COUTURE

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CHANEL

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HAUTE-COUTURE

C H A N E L · G I A M B AT T I S TA · D I O R · I R I S VA N H E R P E N H E R M E S · S C H I A PA R E L L I · J I L S A N D E R · L O E W E · F E N D I · VA L E N T I N O

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CHANEL

CHANEL

CHANEL

CHANEL

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CHANEL

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S C H I A PA R E L L I

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COLLECTIONS FROM PARIS

HAUTE-COUTURE

C H A N E L · G I A M B AT T I S TA · D I O R · I R I S VA N H E R P E N H E R M E S · S C H I A PA R E L L I · J I L S A N D E R · LO E W E · F E N D I · VA L E N T I N O

S C H I A PA R E L L I

S C H I A PA R E L L I

S C H I A PA R E L L I

S C H I A PA R E L L I

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COLLECTIONS FROM PARIS

HAUTE-COUTURE

C H A N E L · G I A M B AT T I S TA · D I O R · I R I S VA N H E R P E N H E R M E S · S C H I A PA R E L L I · J I L S A N D E R · L O E W E · F E N D I · VA L E N T I N O

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DIOR

DIOR

DIOR

DIOR

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DIOR

IN DEALING WITH THE TAROT IN HER HAUTE COUTURE COLLECTION, MARIA GRAZIA CHIURI MADE THE CHOICE TO FOLLOW ONE OF THE ARCANE, MYSTICAL PATHS THAT SURFACE IN CATACLYSMIC TIMES WHEN HUMANITY STRIVES TOT NEGOTIATE WITH THE HAND OF FATE. page 117


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HERMES

IN THIS CALM AND CONTROLLED COLLECTION, THE BLOUSON IN ITS VARIOUS ITERATIONS – GREEN PLAID RAINPROOF, REVERSED SHEARLING, COTTON MUSTARD ZIPPER FRONT, A GRAY LEATHER BOMBER – IS THE NEW VERSION OF A JACKET. page 118


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COLLECTIONS FROM PARIS

HAUTE-COUTURE

C H A N E L · G I A M B AT T I S TA · D I O R · I R I S VA N H E R P E N H E R M E S · S C H I A PA R E L L I · J I L S A N D E R · L O E W E · F E N D I · VA L E N T I N O

HERMES

HERMES

HERMES

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HERMES page 119


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COLLECTIONS FROM PARIS

HAUTE-COUTURE

C H A N E L · G I A M B AT T I S TA · D I O R · I R I S VA N H E R P E N H E R M E S · S C H I A PA R E L L I · J I L S A N D E R · L O E W E · F E N D I · VA L E N T I N O

I R I S VA N H E R P E N

I R I S VA N H E R P E N

I R I S VA N H E R P E N

I R I S VA N H E R P E N

I R I S VA N H E R P E N

I R I S VA N H E R P E N

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I R I S VA N H E R P E N

ENTANGLED LIFE, A BOOK ABOUT HOW FUNGI SUSTAIN LIFE ON EARTH, INSPIRED THE COLLECTION. HER USE OF PLEATING RELATES BACK TO THE GILLS OF MUSHROOMS. MYCELIUM, INFLUENCED BOTH SILHOUETTES AND EMBELLISHMENTS. page 121


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JIL SANDER

BETWEEN THEIR ENVELOPING WOOL COATS, ELONGATED TAILORING, ROOMY KNITWEAR, FLUID OVERSHIRTS AND COMFORTING KNITTED COLLARS, A MORE ABSTRACT INTERPRETATION OF OUR WARDROBE MINDSET THAN MERE ‘COMFORT-WEAR’ TAKE SHAPE. page 122


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COLLECTIONS FROM PARIS

HAUTE-COUTURE

C H A N E L · G I A M B AT T I S TA · D I O R · I R I S VA N H E R P E N H E R M E S · S C H I A PA R E L L I · J I L S A N D E R · L O E W E · F E N D I · VA L E N T I N O

JIL SANDER

JIL SANDER

JIL SANDER

JIL SANDER

JIL SANDER

JIL SANDER page 123


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COLLECTIONS FROM PARIS

HAUTE-COUTURE

C H A N E L · G I A M B AT T I S TA · D I O R · I R I S VA N H E R P E N H E R M E S · S C H I A PA R E L L I · J I L S A N D E R · L O E W E · F E N D I · VA L E N T I N O

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LOEWE

LOEWE

LOEWE

LOEWE

LOEWE

LOEWE


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LOEWE

A COLLECTION THAT HAS PLENTY OF PLAYFUL PIECES – A FINE RED LEATHER COAT, SHEARLING COATS, A GREAT HAND-KNIT SWEATER MADE OF COMPLICATED PATTERNS, AND A SIMPLE CAMEL SHEARLING DUFFLE HOODED COAT.

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G I A M B AT T I S TA VA L L I

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COLLECTIONS FROM PARIS

HAUTE-COUTURE

C H A N E L · G I A M B AT T I S TA · D I O R · I R I S VA N H E R P E N H E R M E S · S C H I A PA R E L L I · J I L S A N D E R · L O E W E · F E N D I · V A L E N T I N O

G I A M B AT T I S TA VA L L I

G I A M B AT T I S TA VA L L I

G I A M B AT T I S TA VA L L I

G I A M B AT T I S TA VA L L I

G I A M B AT T I S TA VA L L I

G I A M B AT T I S TA VA L L I page 127


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COLLECTIONS FROM PARIS

HAUTE-COUTURE

C H A N E L · G I A M B AT T I S TA · D I O R · I R I S VA N H E R P E N H E R M E S · S C H I A PA R E L L I · J I L S A N D E R · L O E W E · F E N D I · VA L E N T I N O

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VA L E N T I N O

VA L E N T I N O

VA L E N T I N O

VA L E N T I N O

VA L E N T I N O

VA L E N T I N O


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VA L E N T I N O

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FENDI

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COLLECTIONS FROM PARIS

HAUTE-COUTURE

C H A N E L · G I A M B AT T I S TA · D I O R · I R I S VA N H E R P E N H E R M E S · S C H I A PA R E L L I · J I L S A N D E R · L O E W E · F E N D I · V A L E N T I N O

FENDI

FENDI

FENDI

FENDI

FENDI

FENDI page 131


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MALDIVES

ALL-YOU-CAN-STAY REWARDS PROGRAM

STAY A WEEK OR A MONTH - AND EARN POINTS TOWARD FUTURE TRAVEL AND TRIPS TO THE MALDIVES

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MALDIVES PRIVATE ISLAND INDULGENCES HAVE THEIR PERKS

M

OVE OVER, ALL-INCLUSIVE VACATIONS; THE ALL-YOU-CANSTAY RESORT PACKAGE HAS ENTERED THE PARTY.

A new offer from the adults-only page 138

Anantara Veli in Maldives invites travelers to use the resort as a personal vacation crash pad. Their $30,000 package includes the use of a two-person, over-water bungalow at the private-island property for unlimited in 2021, with airport transfers and breakfast thrown in for good measure.

There will also be discounts for add-ons, which include Ayurvedic spa treatments, Maldivian cooking lessons and water activities like diving, snorkeling and surfing. While that price tag isn’t for the faint of heart, it’s less than the cost of a permanent vacation home in many parts of the


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world. And another potential bonus: it will go nicely with the new, first-of-itskind countrywide loyalty program that Maldives is rolling out in 2021. Back in September, officials of the Indian Ocean country announced that a three-tier, tourist loyalty program called “Maldives Border Miles” would debut in 2021. Though specifics for how the program will work on a practical level have

not yet been revealed, there are Gold, Silver and Bronze levels, which will correspond to the amount of money spent in-country and will come with rewards and perks for frequent visitors. Maldives, which is heavily dependent on international tourism for its economy, was relatively early to open up its borders amidst the global coronavirus crisis. The archipelago’s geography

helped considerably, as most tourist accommodation is on private islands or atolls removed from the densely packed capital of Malé. According to data from Johns Hopkins University, Maldives has had 12,059 confirmed cases of Covid-19, with only 12 deaths.

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MALDIVES

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STAY-AT-HOME RE-READING CONJURES UP COMFORTS OF A BYGONE ERA GREGORY BERTRAND Copy Editor @bertrand7367

W

HAT

MAKES US REREAD SOMETHING WE’VE ALREADY READ? IS IT A DESIRE TO RELIVE OUR FAVORITE MOMENTS? OR BECAUSE WE WANT TO SEE IF THERE’S ANYTHING WE MISSED? OR PERHAPS IT’S OUT OF COMFORT. To reread a book is to return home for the holidays, a time to reunite with family and friends and reminisce. But, what if, in returning to this book, you’re returning to a home that’s not so warm and comforting. This is the dilemma that occurred to me as I was rereading Catherine Lacey’s “Certain American States,” a book that, when I first read it, hailed it as one of the best short story

collections that I’d ever read. “The loneliness of certain American states is enough to kill a person if you look too closely.” This line comes from the titular story “Certain American States.” It’s one of the shorter stories in Lacey’s collection, sitting at only six pages, but ultimately, it serves as the thesis statement for the book. The story is about a woman who we only know as Sophia. Sophia is being raised begrudgingly by her godfather Leonard, after Sophia’s birth mother passes away “while the ink was still wet” on her birth certificate. The two live a lonely, antagonistic existence, as Leonard never wanted to be a godfather in the first place. On her 16th birthday, Leonard leaves Sophia a check for $2,143, walks out of town and never returns. After decades, Sophia gets a late-night call, asking if anyone going by that name lives at that residence. She responds no, and we learn that our narrator’s name (we never learn her real one) isn’t Sophia. It turns out Leonard is dying in a hospital in

one of the Dakotas and is asking for his goddaughter. The narrator travels to see Leonard, and as she sits by his bedside, indulges him in the narratives, either through drug-induced hallucination or as a way to achieve unconscious desires of a life he never lived. Leonard talks about their travels through Africa until he catches the narrator off guard by breaking character and addressing her by her real name. “... He wanted to know how I was. Asked me how I was doing like it was nothing. Like he’d said it a million times.” This is when it’s her turn to make up a life she never got to live. “I’m good, I said, I have a good husband who has a good job as a manager and I am a manager, too, which means I am managing…” After that, Leonard snaps back into character, addressing her as Sophia once again, and that’s how the story ends. Like many of the stories in “Certain page 145


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American States,” it’s a lonely story, and that’s what draws me back to Lacey’s collection because of how lonely the characters are, and how I can relate to their utter helplessness in this lonely world. I find comfort in the stories and the characters and I find them endlessly relatable, even on second or third rereading. What really makes the story I summarized standout is how cleverly Lacey uses the plot to convey how lonely these two characters are. We don’t know the narrators’ real name or even any details about her life. Not only do we not know the character, neither does Leonard, as both of them never really tell the other what has been going on in their lives since Leonard left all those decades ago. In Lacey’s “Certain American States,” loneliness doesn’t just come in the form of isolation, but also in never truly knowing the people who are around you. In the first story, “Violations,” a story within a story exists. The narrator receives a literary magazine in the mail page 146

that contains a story published by his ex-wife. He initially only wants to read the story to “make sure she wouldn’t write about him”, but as he starts to read his ex-wife’s work, he finds that the story is so unlike the real story of their relationship that he can’t help but call his ex-wife, demanding to know where she got this material from. It’s a stark reminder of how we can know someone without really knowing who they are.

After the year that was 2020, and how 2021 is foreboding, it’s only natural to want to have something familiar to hold onto. That’s why so many of us go back to old books, albums and movies we already know we love, there’s no risk in experiencing something you have already experienced before. GREGORY BERTRAND COPY EDITOR POLO LIFESTYLES 2021


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{PRIVATE VIEWING}

REWA & OLUWOLE OMOFEMI page 149


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B O L D F I G U R AT I V E P O R T R A I T S F R O M T H E

AFROPOLITAN REWA R E WA

WHILST 2020 HAS BEEN A CHALLENGING YEAR FOR THE GLOBAL ART M A R K E T AT L A R G E , W I T H A R T F A I R S F R O M A R T B A S E L T O 1 : 5 4 E I T H E R B E I N G C A N C E L E D , P O S T P O N E D O R H E L D V I R T U A L LY D U E T O T H E S C O U R G E T H AT I S T H E C O R O N AV I R U S PA N D E M I C , 2 0 2 1 P R O M I S E S T O B E O N E O F O P P O R T U N I T Y, R E N E W A L A N D R E V I VA L . F O R E V I D E N C E O F T H I S R E T U R N T O G R E E N E R PA S T U R E S , L O O K N O F U R THER THAN OUR 2020 VERNISSAGE ALUMNA, REWA, WHO HAS KICKED O F F T H E Y E A R S T R O N G LY W I T H A G R O U P E X H I B I T I O N I N L O S A N G E L E S W I T H B A N D O F V I C E S , A N D A M U C H -A N T I C I PAT E D U P C O M I N G D U O E X H I B I T I O N , E M A N C I PAT I O N , I N B A R C E L O N A W I T H O U T O F A F R I C A G A L L E R Y. page 150


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VERNISSAGE

A S E R I E S B Y R A P H A E L K . D A PA A H I N T R O D U C I N G T H E - N E X T- B I G A R T I S T S T O T H E W O R L D O F A R T C O L L E C T O R S A N D C U R AT O R S

R A I S E D B E T W E E N N I G E R I A A N D E N G L A N D , R E W A’ S H Y B R I D U P B R I N G I N G G R E A T LY I N F O R M S H E R W O R K , A N D P E R F E C T LY D E P I C T S T H E M O D E R N A F R O P O L I TA N W O M A N : F O R WA R D -T H I N K I N G , P R O G R E S S I V E , U N I N H I B I T E D A N D S E L F -AWA R E , Y E T S T I L L R O O T E D I N T H E E X P E C TAT I O N S , D U T Y A N D R E S P O N S I B I L I T Y T H AT T R A D I T I O N A N D A N C I E N T C U S T O M S D I C TAT E . RAPHAEL K. DAPAAH Art Contributor @raphaeldapaah

T

 H ERE’S AN UNMISTAKABLE AIR OF CONFIDENCE AND SELF-ASSUREDNESS THAT RADIATES FROM THE EYES OF THE MUSES THAT REWA MASTERFULLY CAPTURES ON HER CANVASES. THEIR GAZES BOTH INVITE YOU IN LIKE AN OLD FRIEND, YET STILL INTIMIDATE ENOUGH TO KEEP YOU AT BAY, IN THE KNOWLEDGE THAT THE VIEWER IS NOT ENTIRELY WORTHY OF THEIR PRESENCE. Regality is the phrase best used to describe REWA’s work. Not in the gaudy sense that imposes its will or shines so brightly one is forced to turn away. But in the quiet, subdued manner that commands respect and holds your attention effortlessly. REWA’s bold figurative portraits are, by all accounts, an extension of the artist herself. A melting pot of varying influences, cultures and experiences that have shaped and melded a person who is as comfortable haggling the price of lace fabric in the heart of the hustle and bustle of Onitsha market as they are blitzing through the high-end boutiques

Let Us Begin, 2020

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Look At Me, 2020

of London and Paris. Born and raised between Nigeria and England, REWA’s hybrid upbringing greatly informs her work, and indeed perfectly depicts the sensation that is the modern Afropolitan woman. Forward-thinking, progressive, uninhibited and self-aware, yet still rooted, albeit loosely, in the expectations, duty and responsibility that tradition and ancient customs dictate. In REWA’s case, that tradition and ancient custom is that of the Igbo people of South-East Nigeria, who are often described as Nigeria’s most industrious and enterprising, as well as their most independent of thought and practice. The ancient value system and custom of the Igbo people and their fierce independence is evidenced in the themes REWA unpacks in her portraits, seen through a contemporary lens. Essential themes such as the importance of coming of age, engagement, marriage and playing one’s part in their community and Igbo society at large are fundamental to REWA, and seamlessly blend the old with the modern; adapted, but never compromised to suit the times. page 152

Princess of the Court, 2020

What sets REWA apart from most contemporary artists today is that she transcends the title of artist, and is all but in name, a historian and chronicler of the evolution of her ethnic group, nation and continent in real time. Through her work, we witness first-hand the assertion and confidence of women; their ability to code switch, and dip effortlessly between the West and the African continent whilst retaining their essence, and above all else, the liberty of having options, not being restricted by the confines of patriarchy and perpetually subject to the male gaze as art history is all too often guilty.

Beyond being aesthetically captivating, REWA’s work is intellectually stimulating, thought-provoking and educational. Although working through the medium of acrylic paints, it is well within reason and justified to liken the importance of her practice to that of fellow compatriots and creative greats, Chinua Achebe and Chimamanda Ngozie Ndichie, whose work, like REWA’s, shines an illuminating spotlight on both past and contemporary Nigerian society, its inhabitants and their worldview. REWA’s iconic pieces will be on show at the EMANCIPATION duo exhibition from February 6 to March 14.


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OUT OF AFRICA GALLERY CARRER NOU 1 - 08870 SITGES, BARCELONA S PA I N

www.outofafricagallery.com

Have You Heard? 2020

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VERNISSAGE A S E R I E S B Y R A P H A E L K . D A PA A H I N T R O D U C I N G T H E - N E X T- B I G A R T I S T S T O T H E W O R L D O F A R T C O L L E C T O R S A N D C U R AT O R S

MESMERIZING MUSES OF

OLUWOLE OMOFEMI

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Blue Cup, 2020, and Unarmed, 2020

RAPHAEL K. DAPAAH Art Contributor @raphaeldapaah

F

EATURING OLUWOLE OMOFEMI HAS BEEN QUITE SOME TIME IN THE MAKING, BUT ABSOLUTELY WORTH THE WAIT. AFTER SPEAKING WITH THE ARTIST AT GREAT LENGTH ABOUT THE MOTIVATION AND DRIVING FORCE BEHIND HIS WORK, I FOUND HIM TO BE AS THOUGHT-PROVOKING AND AS DEEP AS THE TRIBAL MARKS ETCHED INTO THE SKIN OF HIS MESMERIZING MUSES. Omofemi’s work can best be described in his own words, ‘unapologetic’. His muses: black women depicted with skin as dark and rich as the oil that serves as the lifeblood of the artist’s home country of Nigeria, are adorned with deep tribal marks, and crowned with engulfing halo-esque afros reminiscent of past martyrs of the black power movement that swept the global African diaspora in the late 1960s right through to the early 1980s.

Omofemi’s depiction of untamed manes, midnight hue skin and deep, penetrating tribal marks is a rallying cry against what he views as the deterioration of the pride and self-esteem amongst his black sisters today – both in Nigeria, and abroad, whom he believes have been most subjected by post-colonial indoctrination and pandering to Western society’s ideal of beauty and civilization.

Moreover, Omofemi’s commentary on the suggested regression and plight of modern black women, and the need to reflect on and return to their former glory, has implications for the familial and relationship dynamic between black men and black women, and the topical subject of the decline of intermarriage, understanding and cohesion between the two.

Raised predominantly in the company of his grandfather who shaped Omofemi’s worldview and greatly informed his understanding of his culture, and his appreciation for his heritage and identity; he was inspired by his grandfather’s period that nurtured the generation of Nigerians who fought for independence against colonial rule while embracing the notion of self-determination and their African-ness.

Yet, despite what on face value could appear to be a bleak outlook, Omofemi’s overarching raison d’etre and mission is to showcase Afrocentric pride, which he maintains can only truly be championed through how black women, his muses, view themselves, and in turn are viewed by others.

Prevalent in his work are overtones of nostalgia and longing for what the artist suggests to be a golden age for the esteem, strength and beauty of black women. Conversely, Omofemi’s work infers that as time passes, there has actually been a regression in the true liberty and emancipation of black women as far as their ability to embrace their most true and authentic versions of themselves, which is anchored in their African-ness, seen and felt viscerally through their skin tone and hair.

For him, true liberty and emancipation for Africa, and black people at large, can only be achieved and realized once black women are free to be their true selves and embraced and celebrated as they are. Omofemi’s arresting pieces will be on show at the EMANCIPATION duo exhibition from February 6 to March 14. www.outofafricagallery.com OUT OF AFRICA GALLERY B A R C E L O N A - S PA I N

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ALIGN WITH YO SPIRITUALITY · FAITH · QUESTIONS · GROWTH · FOCUS

WHAT PEOPLE THINK ABOUT YOU SHOULD MATTER “Knowing others is intelligence; knowing yourself is true wisdom.” - LAOZI, THE DAODEJING  JYOTI PAINTEL Spirituality contributor @jyotipaintel

I

F WE YEARN TO BECOME AWAKE OR CONSCIOUS INDIVIDUALS (THE SPIRITUAL TERMS FOR BEING AT PEACE WITH BOTH OUR INNER STRENGTHS AND WEAKNESSES AND THOSE OF OUR WORLD AT LARGE), ONE OF THE BEST THINGS TO DO ON A ROUTINE BASIS IS TO CONDUCT A CHECK-IN WITH OURSELVES. THIS IS SIMILAR TO AN ASSESSMENT THAT EVALUATES THE MANY ASPECTS OR AREAS THAT GIVE STRUCTURE, DUTY AND MEANING page 160

TO OUR EXISTENCE. Viewing our many selves through different lenses: our professional, social, personal and spiritual selves; are the usual components of this check-in. From this, we can acknowledge the condition in which we see our lives. Unfortunately, sometimes we do so in an over-simplified way of judging: satisfied or dissatisfied. This, in itself, is problematic because we are much more dynamic and multifaceted, with complex emotions that go beyond satisfied or dissatisfied. Many people are also hesitant to do any real self-analysis because the connotation of self- analysis naturally brings to mind traditional psychotherapies, which can be seen as invasive or tend only to highlight what was wrong in the past and how it led to what is making us unhappy now.  Another hindrance for some is that traditional “talk therapy” is usually administered in individual or groupsessions that can naturally take a lot

of time to build a comfort level, background knowledge and properly flowing rapport. It is no small thing how emotionally draining it can be to admit we have difficult but poignant issues. What if instead, we had a way of looking at ourselves that was more explorative, creative, generous and gave us the type of insight that is expansive, instead of just something static and general? “Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakes.”  - Carl Jung THE MYRIAD PATHS TO SELF -DISCOVERY

Self-discovery methods of inner probing are not meant to highlight the problems we want to fix in our lives because there will always be things we want to improve - whether it is something about our physicality or our status. Instead, one of the most signifying traits of being on a path of enlightenment and self-discovery is not forcing ourselves to immedi-


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OUR PURPOSE IN SY N C W IT H YO UR V IB E

R E N E WA L · C O M M U N I T Y · S U P P O RT · E X P LO R AT I O N · E N E R G Y ately get busy on improving ourselves, but to sit and be a witness to all the selves we are. Somehow, we must not use the information we have gleaned in the process to force change upon us or, worse yet- others around us, but rather invite change or solutions to come to us organically. Walking on the path of self-discovery might be more attractive when we see it not as yet-another self-help project but a journey wherein we celebrate the conditions (people, knowledge, actions, places, things, etc.) that are beautiful, healthy and clearly already working hard to support our highest good. When we know how to focus our attention on finding what is bringing us joy in our lives, no matter how small or irrelevant it might appear, then we also have insight into developing unique coping mechanisms that we can always rely on to get us through difficult times. The best part of the journey of self-discovery is that it never has an ending, just more paths that appear before us to continue our discovery.

“The more you know yourself, the more clarity there is. Selfknowledge has no end - you don’t come to an achievement; you don’t come to a conclusion. It is an endless river.” - Jiddu Krishnamurti METHODS TO UNDERSTANDING THE MADNESS!

In this month’s issue, I will introduce innovative ways

to open the window into our inner worlds. Some of the methods might be familiar. In fact, you might have done something similar such as a Meyers Briggs personality test, but these methods I will introduce are not simply about labeling our personalities through our answers, rather, they are about looking deeply at the answers to even challenge our own beliefs to truly see if our vision is

accurate or perhaps a bit distorted. JOHARI WINDOW

Some self-discovery methods will require the knowledge and perceptions that others have about us: our partners, children, friends, acquaintances and colleagues. You might be surprised to find out that the grocery clerk you have seen every week for the last ten years and talk to regpage 161


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SPIRITUALITY · FAITH · QUESTIONS · GROWTH · FOCUS

ALIGN WITH YOUR PURPOSE IN SY N C W IT H YO UR V IB E

R E N E WA L · C O M M U N I T Y · S U P P O RT · E X P LO R AT I O N · E N E R G Y ularly might have some unknown, astute and jaw-dropping insights about who they perceive you to be. Even if others’ assessment of us is totally off the mark, the knowledge it elicits will encourage us to delve deeper into our own belief systems, our dreams and our behavioral patterns to empower us to challenge our conception of what we bring to the collective table of life. The Johari Window is one such technique that uses information given to us by others to help us better understand our relationships. This method was created by psychologists in 1955 and was commonly used in corporate workplaces as a heuristic exercise - something that is problem-solving in nature, which

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provides perhaps not always the optimal solution, but one that will be satisfactory to create progress. The Johari process is often fashioned in grids for information or a house with rooms. One person is chosen as a subject and then chooses adjectives from a list that they feel describes their own personality and are put in a grid by it. Next, others who are participating get the same list of adjectives and pick words that they feel represent the subject, and those adjectives are put in lists next to each other in the adjacent grid. If we could see these lists as rooms, it would be described as four rooms: one room has a list of the adjectives we would use that clearly describe us, the

second room houses the adjectives that others would use for us, and we are possibly unaware of (Yikes!). The third room has adjectives that describe what we know about ourselves but choose to keep hidden from others. The last room is the unconscious part of ourselves that no one gets to see, including ourselves, but we know sometimes we feel it. This is just a brief description of the Johari system, but if it interests you, then you should read up about it further to understand what the meaning of it all leads to and how to assess it. Next month, I’ll discuss the enneagram as a tool for deeper self -discovery. JYOTI PAINTEL SPIRITUAL CONTRIBUTOR POLO LIFESTYLES 2021


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Australian Wines

Their Frivolous Charms f o r pa n d e m i c t i m e s

BY CEZAR KUSIK

SOMMELIER & WINE WRITER


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In Search ofWines Australian Solace

VERY SERIOUS, YET VERY FRIVOLOUS WINES

U

CEZAR KUSIK Wine Contributor @cezartastesearth

NDENIABLY, AUSTRALIA IS ONE OF THE MOST PROLIFIC AND DIVERSE WINE COUNTRIES, WITH AN EXTREMELY WIDE RANGE OF GEOGRAPHIC AND CLIMATIC CONDITIONS. OBVIOUSLY, ITS SIZE HAS A LOT TO DO WITH IT. WITH NEARLY 420, 000 ACRES UNDER THE VINES AND AN ANNUAL OUTPUT OF AROUND 350 MILLION GALLONS OF WINE, THE COUNTRY STANDS AS THE SIXTH-TOP WINE-PRODUCING NATION GLOBALLY.

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Even though Aussie reds win in popularity, the production split is a close one with 52 percent to 48 percent red to white. All six Australian states produce wine in 65 different wine regions. However, the majority of the quality wines are made in cooler, more wine-promoting climates of the southern states: Victoria, New South Wales and South Australia, with the latter accounting for about half of the country’s production. Even though Western Australia’s output is only at 2 percent, their Bordeaux-style wines have a solid international reputation. As a young country, Australia doesn’t have a long history of wine making, but it’s an explosive one. In the mid19th century, the arrival of free settlers from Europe, specifically from wine making countries, ignited a rapid push

in the quantity and quality of Australia’s wine industry. It’s no secret that Aussies love to have a good time. Back in the mid-2000s, I had a one-year stint in Melbourne working in one of the best wine shops/wine bars in the country, Melbourne City Wine Shop. I had a hard time telling the weekend and the weekdays apart. We wore party hats every day. Back then, if you planned things right and knew where to go and with whom, you could move from one venue to another and keep the party going till sunrise. But that was in my younger days. Working at the shop was a very educational experience for me. We carried a huge selection of wines from around the world, but the focus was definitely the Australian selection.


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Australians are very patriotic about their wines; only about 17 percent of wines consumed there come from import. Before joining the team at the shop, my knowledge of Aussie wines was rather scarce. There, I was introduced to labels I had never heard about and had an opportunity to taste a lot of them. I was impressed with the variety of styles and the overall quality. I managed to visit a few wineries and I met the legendary Bailey Carrodus before his untimely death in 2008. He was the founder of the historic Yarra Yering winery in Yarra Valley, whose red wines based on Bordeaux varieties and Shiraz acquired an international reputation. I spent a weekend on the Mornington peninsula. About an hour’s drive south of Melbourne, this region, with its cool weather conditions and red basalt-based soil, is primed for Pinot Noir and Chardonnay cultivation. Wineries like Ocean Eight, Paradigm Hill, Pt. Leo Estate and Paringa Estate stood out.

Penfolds, Henschke and Hewitson are just a few labels that come straight to mind. Is there a difference between Syrah and Shiraz vines? No. Genetically it is the same grape, and the two names are used interchangeably. There had been much speculation, many legends and tales relating to the grape’s origins. One postulated that Syrah came from Persia, where the Fars province capital’s name is Shiraz. This theory was disproven by genetic tests, which indisputably pinpoint France as the cradle of the grape. Shiraz is believed to have been brought to Australia in mid-19th century by James Busby, a British merchant and a consular representative in New Zealand. These days, Syrah and Shiraz names are often used to indicate a stylistic difference in wine’s structure. If used outside Australia, Shiraz often signifies a fuller body, rich, fleshy and fruit-forward wine where the term Syrah would refer to an old-world, earth and mineral-driven versions.

Arguably, it is Shiraz, which has given Australian wines the most notoriety. Shiraz is grown in most regions, but it is in Barossa Valley and McLaren Vale in South Australia, where most blockbuster Shirazes are produced. Torbreck,

It would be impossible to discuss Australian Shiraz without mentioning its legendary expression, Grange by Penfolds. This, one of the most revered and expensive wines in the world, is composed of Shiraz with occasionally

a small amount of Cabernet Sauvignon added. One could devote a whole article to the wine. Maybe another time. It was the determination of Max Shubert, Penfold’s first chief winemaker, to make his mark on Australia’s wine making. After an inspirational and educational wine trip to France’s Bordeaux region in 1950, Shubert decided to put some of his newly acquired knowledge to work. That is how Penfold’s Grange Hermitage was born, and its international reputation has grown ever since. In 2018 at an online auction, a bottle of 1951 Grange, the inaugural vintage, was sold for $80,000 setting a record for the most expensive bottle of Australian wine. Obviously, it is not just to Shiraz that Australia owes its international wine reputation. Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Grenache, Chardonnay, Semillon, Riesling and Sauvignon Blanc are the other grapes of note resulting in wines of all styles. These are just the top dogs. Altogether, Australia uses around 130 different varieties in commercial wine making. Great Rieslings come from Eden Valley. GSM (Grenache, Shiraz and Mourvèdre) blends, an homage to the red wines of the Southern Rhone in page 169


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Australian Wines

France, are quite ubiquitous here, and their examples can be quite delicious. Semillon whites are a bit of an unsung hero of Australian wines, typically not made into a single variety wine except for the sweet Botrytis affected wines of Sauternes, where it can produce rich, unctuous, and uniquely flavored dry wines. Hunter Valley is where some the best examples of Semillon are made. Tasmania, with a cooler, more Southern geographic location, makes some compelling Pinot Noirs and

sparkling wines. As mentioned earlier, Mornington Peninsula offers great Pinot Noirs and Chardonnay, but other areas in Victoria cannot be ignored in both grapes’ categories. Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot perform well in Western Australia’s Margaret River and most of South Australia. Australians are known for their daring, outspoken, bravado personalities and approach to life. They work hard and play hard, often challenging and breaking the conventional. That attitude can be seen in some aspects of their wine industry. A stereotypical Aussie wine is a bold, richly aromatic, high in alcohol and a fruity libation, maybe lacking in finesse but delivering a memorable punch. Most international winemakers try to avoid making wines with such stigma. Not the Aussies. They gloat over the controversy. Like most generalizations, this one is not all true. Yes, in the early days of the industry most wines were made in that style and found a lot of enthusiasts abroad deepening the cliché. Nowadays, there are quite a few winemakers whose focus have been restraint and elegance. I, in particular, like the Aussie’s unpretentious approach to wine expressed in wine labeling, both from the design

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and the nomenclature standpoint. Humorous, daring labels abound. Their content takes off some of the snobbery and pretense often associated with wine, and recently it also has helped me to lighten up the overall tone of the grim reality. Here are some of my favorites (parental discretion is advised): Tait Family Winery’s Ball Buster red blend, Some Young Punks (all the labels and names), Kaesler Old Bastard Shiraz belongs to one of the most coveted Barossa Valley reds, Delinquente Wine Co. with their “Weeping Juan,” “Creaming Betty,” and “Roko Il Vagabondo;” First Drop “Mother’s Milk” Shiraz from Barossa Valley, Mollydooker with all the names and label designs, R Winery’s “Cheeky Bitch” and “Strong Arms;” Vinaceous Wines’ “Voodoo Moon;” “Snake Charmer” from Margaret River in Western Australia and Unico Zelo’s “Thirst Aid Kit.” So, if these days you happen to feel a bit down, open Thirst Aid Kit, squeeze some Mother’s Milk and have some fun with Cheeky Bitch. CEZAR KUSIK SOMMELIER & WINE CONTRIBUTOR POLO LIFESTYLES 2021


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MANSION OF THE MONTH

THE ONE · LOS ANGELES · $350 MILLION page 174


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MANSION OF THE MONTH

AMERICA'S PRICIEST HOME THE ONE · LOS ANGELES · $350 MILLION

A

A RECORD-BREAKING ESTATE WITH 105,000 SQUARE FEET OF LIVING SPACE

FTER NEARLY A DECADE OF DESIGN AND DEVELOPMENT WORK, WHAT IS BEING BILLED AS “THE WORLD’S MOST EXPENSIVE HOME” IS FINALLY READY FOR ITS CLOSE-UP. SET ON A FIVE-ACRE PARCEL IN THE POSH LOS ANGELES ENCLAVE OF BEL-AIR—AND APTLY NAMED THE ONE—THE 105,000-SQUARE-FOOT PROPERTY’S INTERIORS HAVE REMAINED A CLOSELY GUARDED SECRET. UNTIL NOW. WE HAVE AN EXCLUSIVE LOOK AT WHAT’S INSIDE THIS RECORD-SETTING PROPERTY— AND THE DESIGN AND AESTHETIC MINDS THAT MADE IT HAPPEN.

er Nile Niami to help it live up to its reported $350 million price tag.

Surrounded on three sides by a moat and a 400-foot-long jogging track, the estate appears to float above the city. Completed over 80 years—and requiring 600 workers to build—the home was designed by architect Paul McClean and interior designer Kathryn Rotondi, who were enlisted by owner and develop-

The use of black, white and gray throughout the home was based on Niami’s desire to have a neutral palette that would allow the landscape and panoramas to shine.

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“This project felt exciting and simultaneously intimidating,” says McClean. But the home’s impressive site and his long-standing relationship with Niami persuaded McClean to not just take on the project but “create something unique and spectacular.” And McClean certainly has delivered. With its 26-foot-high ceilings, the home’s main entrance leads to an array of gathering areas with panoramic 360-degree views of the Pacific Ocean, downtown Los Angeles and the San Gabriel Mountains. The entry area is filled with water, along with a sculpture and bridge. “Water is something we often use in our design process because it allows for a sensory change that helps you adjust to your surroundings,” says McClean.

Drawing inspiration from the surrounding environment and history of Los

Angeles modernism, McClean has connected the home’s inside with outside “to provide that quintessential L.A. living but on a bigger scale,” he describes. “To allow the home to feel livable, we separated the entertainment spaces from the living areas. [The former] are located at the lower level [and] this creates a plinth for the rest of the house to sit on and reduces [its] apparent mass.” Beyond the eye-catching design are the home’s equally jaw-dropping stats. There are 42 bathrooms, 21 bedrooms, a 5,500-square-foot master suite, a 30car garage gallery with two car-display turntables, a four-lane bowling alley, a spa-level, a 30-seat movie theater, a philanthropy wing (with a capacity of 200) for charity galas with floating pods overlooking Los Angeles, a 10,000-square-foot sky deck and five swimming pools. Along with Niami, Rotondi, founder of KFR Design, worked on the interior design to shape distinctive spaces that flow into one another despite the grandness of the house. “I was really drawn to ‘wow factor’ elements in the hospitality sector” for inspiration, says Rotondi, who looked to top luxury hotel brands such as Aman, Bulgari and Baccarat.


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Meanwhile, the home’s color palette, soft textures, and lighting are an ode to the Tom Ford boutique on Rodeo Drive, a favorite of Niami and McClean. Thanks to a collaboration between Creative Art Partners and Art Angels, the property features an impressive collection of art, including a butterfly installation by Stephen Wilson on the lower level and a Niclas Castello custom panel in black and silver in the office. There is also a sizable collection of bespoke furniture pieces from Showroom. Due to recently approved city ordinances, a house of this magnitude will never again be built in Los Angeles, which means The One will truly remain one of a kind. “This project has been such a long and educational journey for us all,” McClean notes. “It was approached with excitement and was thrilling to create, but I don’t think any of us realized just how much effort and time it would take to complete the project.” Now it’s time to find the perfect buyer for it. Branden and Rayni Williams of The Beverly Hills Estates, along with Compass’s Aaron Kirman, have the listing. page 178

WRITTEN BY KARINE MONIÉ & PHOTOGRAPHED BY DOUGLAS FRIEDMAN REAL ESTATE SPECIALISTS POLO LIFESTYLES 2021


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CORINTHIAN ISLAND’S ICON

Francisco skyline, Angel Island, the Bay Bridge, Belvedere Island and the adjacent Corinthian Yacht Club.

74 BELLEVUE AVENUE BELVEDERE, CALIFORNIA 94920 

Built in 2002 with exquisite custom details that combine old-world craftsmanship with modern design, the approximately 6,340 square foot residence features four bedrooms and three and one-half bathrooms, expansive formal living, dining and entertaining areas, and a luxuriant master suite on its own level. Approached through a gated drive, the home’s privacy is enveloping thanks to established hedges and lush Mediterranean gardens. The south-facing view side of the home

$25,495,000 4 BEDROOMS | 3.5 BATHS | 6,340 SQ FT

ABOUT 74 BELLEVUE AVENUE The grandeur and elegance of Italian Riviera living awaits at 74 Bellevue. Situated on the southernmost tip of Corinthian Island, the Italianate estate has commanding views of the San page 182

has several terraces and verandas on multiple levels, a putting green, pond and a sculpture garden with a fireside lounge, all of which offer panoramic vistas. Additional highlights include an expansive gourmet kitchen, three-car garage, two fireplaces, two wine cellars, a sprawling family and entertainment room and a breathtaking double-height foyer with a grand limestone staircase. Direct walking distance to Tiburon’s bucolic shops and dining, a quick ferry commute to San Francisco and yacht life at your doorstep make this timeless, iconic estate a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for the most discerning of buyers.


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EUROPEAN RESORTLIKE ESTATE 109 Fawn Drive San Anselmo, California 94960 $7,500,000 5 BEDROOMS | 7 BATHROOMS | 7,600+ SQUARE FEET | 0.8 ACRES

ABOUT 109 FAWN DRIVE One of Marin’ s most exquisite estates, 109 Fawn Drive, is grand, elegant and timeless with a resort-like scale. Refined classic aesthetic with graciously proportioned spaces throughout, a perfectly situated property on nearly an acre of completely level grounds. The private, gated estate is of modern European design. Meticulously manicured front-gardens surround a seamless horseshoe drive, showcasing the grand page 184

stature of the property. Enter through the handsome arched door to a dramatic double-height foyer with soaring domed ceiling and sweeping staircase. The home is brilliantly designed around an open central courtyard, providing a luminous flow of beautiful light and calm to the main living spaces. The home’s heart is anchored by an open concept, expansive chef ’s kitchen with great room and adjacent formal living and dining rooms with a spectacular stone fireplace. Almost every room on the main level opens to the interior courtyard, or the resort-like outdoors, making the boundary of inside and out disappear. The exterior features are abundant, with a professional tennis court, sparkling in-ground pool and spa, three waterfalls, cabana, sweeping level lawn and wrap-around limestone terrace off the main living areas, perfect for entertaining and al fresco dining.

The interior main level also features a library, two separate offices, a children’s study, two bathrooms and a spacious three-car garage with plenty of built-in storage. A second grand staircase accesses the upstairs level featuring three en suite bedrooms with generous sitting areas and wide hallways, a dedicated spa room featuring a steam room and sauna, and finally a magnificent owner ’s suite featuring gorgeous built-ins, a large walk-in closet, a spa-worthy bathroom, all with views of the stunning grounds. This 7,600+ square foot residence boasts tremendous scale and outstanding execution of indoor and outdoor flow throughout, providing the perfect California lifestyle and the entertainers’ dream. Close to the many quaint, vibrant shops and restaurants of San Anselmo and nearby hiking/biking trails. A once in a lifetime opportunity to have it all!


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225 WEST 17TH STREET PENTHOUSE 2

New York, New York, 10003 United States

PRICE UPON REQUEST page 186

THE PINNACLE OF LUXURY Enjoy panoramic views of downtown to the Freedom Tower from floor-to-ceiling casement windows, and your private 375 sq ft terrace. Arrive through a private elevator landing into a commodious great room with window walls bathed in sunshine from

triple exposures and enjoy seamless indoor/outdoor living onto the south-facing terrace. High ceilings, wide-plank distressed oak floors, premium finishes, and a contemporary yet timeless aesthetic grace the ambiance throughout.


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FRENCH FLAIR IN LOS ANGELES 105 North Rossmore Avenue Hancock Park Los Angeles, CA 90004

$13,650,000 4 BEDS / 4 BATHS / 2 HALF BATHS / 8,163 SQ FT

Celebrated architect Wallace Neffs last residential triumph sited on the 9th fairway of Wilshire Country Club in Hancock Park. Timeless neoclassic page 188

design joins austere contemporary styling for home originally created for the Chandler family of LA Times fortune & influence. The estates’ innate grandeur is meticulously preserved, including original hand-carved crown moldings, imposing entrance columns with roofline balustrade complement, marble portico, awe-inspiring foyer with 30 ceilings and herringbone wood floors throughout. Imported door & window fixtures from Paris - as the mansion was inspired by Louis XVs Chateau de Louveciennes. Recently installed new design elements echo Neffs’ original vision yet bring current technology and

comforts to the forefront. Landscape design by Art Luna, gated motor court plus seven-car garage, captivating views and boundless imagination support the experience of living in the capture of this rare residence. Listed by Douglas Elliman Ernie Carswell DRE #: 01111566 O: 310.595.3888 M: 310.345.7500


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MOLD YOUR MIND LOOKING FEARLESSLY IN THE MIRROR

A GUIDE TO TAKING CARE OF YOURSELF JOEY VELEZ MA, MBA @velezmentalperformance Healthy Lifestyles Contributor

I

T'S 5 A.M. WHEN YOUR ALARM GOES OFF. YOU GRAB YOUR PHONE, TURN OFF YOUR ALARM, AND HIT THE SNOOZE BUTTON, WHEN IT RINGS AGAIN, YOU CHECK YOUR SOCIAL MEDIA PROFILES, EMAILS AND IMPORTANT NEWS AS YOU LAY IN BED. FAST FORWARD TO 9 OR 10 P.M. YOU LIE IN BED WITH PHONE IN HAND, SCROLLING THROUGH SOCIAL MEDIA, MAYBE CHECKING YOUR EMAILS ONE LAST TIME AND SEEING IF THERE WAS ANY BREAKING NEWS THAT YOU MISSED. If this sounds familiar, then you are not alone. With the evolution of technology, many individuals start and end their days like this. Our phones help us get work done, connect with people and are valuable resources for gathering information about the world. While each of page 192

these components is important, we are distracted by the world around us and focus less on what is going on within us. I was listening to a podcast recently that featured none other than Matthew McConaughey, and something he said stuck out. Along his journey to being successful, he would often journal. The intention being because he wanted to make sure he was in the right mental space to function properly. He said, “Check in with yourself before you check in with the world,” and I couldn’t agree with him more. We are too often concerned with how others feel, what they are doing, and ultimately, we are less concerned with how we feel, and how we are doing. It is acceptable to be concerned with your own well-being before checking in on others, but it is about making a more concerted effort to do that.

PUT YOUR PHONE AWAY! There are benefits to checking in with yourself before checking in with the world around you. Benefits come in the form of self-care, which are strategies and activities you participate in to improve your overall well-being. Self-care can improve your physical and emotional health, as well as nurturing others, but ultimately, it allows you to reconnect with yourself. By doing this, you become more productive because you have a clearer mind, your stress levels decrease, your immune system gets a needed

boost. When your body and mind are in such a state, not only will your overall well-being be impacted, but it puts you in a better position to improve the well-being of others because you have a clearer conscious to do so. Research has shown us that cell phone usage, or any type of screen usage, can have a detrimental impact on our brains. First, your circadian clock rhythm becomes delayed. Your circadian rhythm assists with many bodily functions that include your metabolism and your mood. The artificial light that comes from your cell phone messes up the circadian rhythm and makes it more difficult for your body to respond effectively. One way to maintain your circadian rhythm is the secretion of melatonin, which is also impacted by low light. As a result, screen usage makes your mind more alert when it should be winding down, so you actually become more awake. During research that encouraged participants to use e-readers before bed, results showed that it took participants an average of 10 minutes longer to fall asleep. Not only is your ability to fall asleep impacted, but so is your ability to reach REM sleep. Our body relies on REM sleep to restore our body and mind, solidify memories, and to link to our creative side and problem solving skills. When you fail to reach this state, you wake up feeling groggy and less moti-


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vated to complete daily tasks. Are you technically damaging your brain? No, but you are keeping your mind and body from being as fresh as possible. To be your best self, to function at a more optimal level, you need sleep so you can feel rejuvenated the next day.

ME, MYSELF, AND I For the longest time, the first thing I would do in the morning was scroll through Instagram (I still do this occasionally). I wanted to catch up on everybody’s stories, pick up on conversations and see what new funny memes there were. As a result of this, I would stay in bed longer than I anticipated. When this would happen, I would say how lazy I was for not getting out of bed like I should have. This is not an ideal way to start your day; as a result, my day would be further thrown off. I would still be productive, but not as productive. Similar to my mornings, evenings ended in a similar fashion. As I got into bed and under the covers, I would pull out my phone and scroll through Instagram. I wanted to see what new stories people put up, if I missed any photos or memes, and occasionally this would take me so far down the rabbit hole that I would end up on YouTube watching squirrels water skiing. Once I put my phone away, my mind was so stimulated that it was difficult to fall asleep. I struggle with falling asleep already, so adding an over-stimulated brain to the equation did not make it easier. As you can imagine, having a hard time falling asleep meant I slept

less, which meant I woke up groggy, tired and upset that I had to be awake. It was a vicious cycle. Once I got to graduate school, I started incorporating morning and nightly routines. Both have changed over the years, but my morning routine would consist of either yoga or meditation and journaling about my intentions for the day. Now, I go to the gym first thing in the morning before I talk to anybody. I want my body and mind to feel good and clear before I officially start my day. My nightly routine consists of a combination of deep breathing, journaling, reading and putting my phone on silent and plugged into the wall 30 minutes before getting into bed. My sleeping patterns still are not the best, but they have definitely improved since establishing a nightly routine.

FIND YOUR ROUTINE Establishing a routine can help quiet your mind, put you in an ideal physiological state to execute a task and direct your attention to the president moment. Whether it is a morning routine to help get your day started on the right foot, an evening routine to help you relax, or a routine to help you prepare for an upcoming presentation or workout, these habits can put your mind and body where it needs to be for you to be the best version of yourself. There is not a one size fits all approach to developing routines. Everyone is different; therefore, everyone will have

different components. The time of day you perform your routine also might look different. For example, maybe your morning routine consists of having your first sip of coffee before checking your emails. Having a sip of coffee before bed, on the other hand, might not be very helpful. It is about developing a routine that is unique to you. Some activities to consider when developing a routine include journaling, meditation, yoga, going outside for a walk or run, making a cup of coffee, repeating short phrases to yourself that motivate you to start your day or help you throughout or reading a book before you go to bed. Find out what works for you and remain consistent with it. Just because you do something once does not mean you found the cure. In order for your routine to put your body and mind in a more optimal state, you have to be consistent. Doing this will allow you to make adjustments along the way to help your routine become that much more effective.

FINAL THOUGHTS It is more difficult to take care of others if you do not know how to take care of yourself. While it may sound selfish to take care of yourself first, it actually puts you in a better place to help and support others. So take time for yourself, develop a morning and evening routine, and make sure that you are doing alright before check in on the world around you. page 193


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HEALTH IS WEALTH GET RID OF BACK FAT ONCE AND FOR ALL

F

AT HANGING AROUND YOUR MID OR LOWER BACK AND SIDES (NOT-SO-LOVINGLY CALLED LOVE HANDLES) CAN BE TOUGH TO LOSE. THE GOOD NEWS IS YOUR EFFORTS AREN’T FUTILE; YOU CAN SCULPT YOUR BACK WITH THE RIGHT NUTRITION AND WORKOUT PLAN. HERE’S EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT BANISHING YOUR BACK FAT FOR GOOD.

WHY DOES FAT ACCUMULATE? For once, you can’t blame genetics. Back fat is an indicator of a poor diet, a flawed workout regimen and/or a lack of muscle mass. “People focus on what they see in the mirror,” says Ngo Okafor personal trainer in NYC. “Most guys have lagging hamstrings, glutes and back because they just focus on the front of the body—the arms, chest, abs and quads,” Okafor says, “which is all good and well; but if you don’t build much muscle in your back, whatever fat that’s there tends to sag.”

BUILD A WORKOUT TO COMBAT BACK FAT Not sure if it’s better to do full-body moves that are high-intensity and met-

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abolic as opposed to body part-specific ones? Combine them. “I always believe in doing a cardio-body part split,” Okafor says. If you’re doing chest and back, for example, do a pressing movement and a pulling motion, followed by cardio; more specifically, you could do bench press, bent-over lateral raise, then get on a bike and do a 2–3-minute interval. “Circuit training with strength movements guarantee you’ll build the muscle you need while keeping your heart rate up and burning more calories, so you’re getting lean and getting big,” Okafor says.

THE LOGISTICS To really overhaul your physique and get rid of stubborn back fat, you need to


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work out a minimum of 3-4 days a week. “A higher rep range works best,” Okafor says. “Do 4-5 sets of 12-15 reps with heavy enough weight, so you’re fighting at rep 10-15.” Volume is key here. It causes hypertrophy in your muscles and gives your back time to adapt to the training and new growth. Not sure how much weight to start with? You’ll have to use some trial and error. Someone who’s never lifted anything heavy in his life is considered a beginner, but so is a guy who’s worked in construction for decades but has never lifted in the traditional context of a gym. The starting points will be drastically different. So, with that in mind, start with the bar and then add five pound-plates on each side and go up in increments of five.

DIET AND PORTION CONTROL No surprises here. Lean meats (fish, chicken, and lean steak and pork) and vegetables (especially dark leafy greens like spinach and kale) are the keys to your weight loss transformation. Use your vegetables for energy and carbs, Okafor says; choose ones that are nutrient-dense. “Nutrition is 80 percent of your fitness,” he explains. “You can’t outtrain a bad diet.” But you also need to be realistic. You need to be able to sustain your diet. The goal is to be fit for life, not just fit for your young years. We’re not robots. We’re not telling you to eat chicken and vegetables for every meal. Get creative, Okafor says.  And if you have a hard time with overeating (and don’t want to weigh your food), use your hand for easy measuring and portion control. “About a fist, depending on how big you are, is a good measure for carbs,” Okafor says. “Use

the entire circumference of your hand for veggies and measure your palm for protein.” That’s an easy way to eyeball it.

THE BACK FAT ANNIHILATION WORKOUT If you have an accumulation of back fat because of a bad diet or the “mirror muscle condition,” you need to dedicate extra time to training your back muscles in order to beef them up. Attack your back twice a week for 6-8 weeks using high volume (high rep) circuit training. Okafor suggests doing workout #1 on Monday or Tuesday and workout #2 on Thursday or Friday. This gives your muscles enough time to recover before you blast them again. Rest between sets as needed, but don’t go any longer than 60 seconds. Take 2-3 minutes rest between rounds.

WORKOUT 1 Directions: Complete 3 rounds of this entire circuit. 1. Straight-Arm Pull Downs – 20 reps 2. Chest Supported Row (on an incline bench) – 15 reps 3. TRX Pullups – 15 reps 4. Single-Leg-Crossover V-Ups – 20 reps

on each side 5. Stationary Bike – 3 minutes total – 1 minute of speed at 50% resistance and 1 minute of a hill at 80% resistance and then back down to 50% resistance for another minute of speed.

WORKOUT 2 Directions: Do 3 rounds of this entire circuit on the second day 1. Pullups – 10-12 reps (“It’s ok to use the assisted pull-up machine or a band if you’re not able to do 10-12 pullups without support or any pull-ups at all,” Okafor says.) 2. Cable Pulldowns – 15 reps 3. Seated Cable Row – 15 reps 4. Renegade Rows – 15 reps 5. Situps – 20 reps 6. Hill Run or Walk on a treadmill for 3 minutes *If you run: Do the entire run at 4.5 speed and 6.0 incline for the first minute, 8.0 for the second minute, and 10.0 for the third minute. *If you walk: Do the entire walk at 3.5 speed and 10.0 incline for the first minute, 12.5 for the second minute, and 15.0 for the third minute. page 197


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Polo Lifestyles February 2021 - Madonna: Living for Love  

The hottest dating app status "vaccinated" has inadvertently created a temporary new social class - who's clamoring for a position and how;...

Polo Lifestyles February 2021 - Madonna: Living for Love  

The hottest dating app status "vaccinated" has inadvertently created a temporary new social class - who's clamoring for a position and how;...