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CONTENTS

The Seamaster Aqua Terra > 15’000 – Omega’s advertising campaigns are almost as beautiful as their watches [page 30]

16 ED’S LETTER What excites our editor and, hence, our readers: a look at those stories (and writers) that make the grade.

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LEFT FIELD

Sports scientist Dr Ross Tucker speaks out.

44 SPOILS 18

THE EASY-MONEY TRAP

What to do with that windfall.

20  PSST The list that should make it into your little black book.

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HIGH TIME

In fashion, haute couture refers to bespoke design. In the world of watches, haute defines a class.

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DARK SECRETS

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It’s been a roller-coaster year with demands from every quarter. Isn’t it time to reward yourself for a stellar performance?

MERCURY IN RETROFIT How a hunk of junk became the most desirable vintage car on show.

TIME TRAVELLERS

Here’s how to stock a cellar for style and substance.

In Italy’s art capital of Florence, the locals live and breathe history, storytelling and style. One watchmaker added to that, craftsmanship and technology.

FRONT-ROW SUITS

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UP THERE WITH THE BEST

A suit can make you look dead sexy or a fashion disaster. Here’s how to get it right.

You don’t own a gyrocopter – you have a deep and meaningful relationship with it.

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Cover shot of David Bruce/Boss Models by Jacques Weyers. Styling: Luanne Toms. Swiss cotton shirt with medium-dress collar R2 900, wool and cashmere jacket R14 500, matching trousers R5 900 and waistcoat R3 900, and tie R1 500, all Row-G. Hair and make-up: Karen Haacke, represented by Six Love Artist Management. Fashion assistant: Marilize Uys. Post-production: Blink


CONTENTS

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EYE, ROBOT

Is it a bird? Is it a plane? Might it be a military drone? One thing the aerial robot is not, is a toy.

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FAST-FORWARD

The 2013 BMW EuroStyle Tour races from Lisbon to London loaded with intriguing new inventions.

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DONE AND DUSTED

The Mercedes-Benz M-Class would handle a break to the Kruger or to Maputo – and act as a guide, the 2014 Range Rover Sport will deliver on a serious incline, and the

Audi Q7 may just be the answer to an all-round SUV.

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WILD AND WONDERFUL

The Quirimbas Archipelago in Mozambique fits the bill of tropical wonderland without the crowds.

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CRAYFISH TALES

Moz still delivers the best taste of the tropics.

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PAIRING UP IN PAARL

Set your GPS coordinates for the Grande Roche Hotel.

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HIGH SOCIETY

Private Edition and partners entertain in style.

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STEP AWAY FROM THAT IPHONE

Evidence suggests our phones are addictive; the habit’s hard to kick.

PHOTOGRAPHY: SUPPLIED

The BMW 5-series Gran Turismo or 5-series sedan is a perfect town car, but if you’re thinking of stretching your legs and going offroad, turn to page 74.

THE HARDY BOYS

Carve – verb; to make a turn by tilting something on its edge and using your weight to push it into an arc. Riding mountain bikes is all about this; and other things too.

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KATHY MALHERBE has been a freelance writer for 20 years, specialising in investigative, medical, travel and motoring features, and a regular contributor to Private Edition for the past five years. Fascinated by all advances in medical science, she won the 2013 Siemens pan-African Profile Award for Excellence in Science and Technology Journalism in the Health category in August. She says, ‘Writing for Private Edition has been a wonderful journey – from taking to the skies in a helicopter, driving on the F1 track in Abu Dhabi, skiing in Zermatt and quad biking in a game reserve to finding out what makes the captains of industry tick or interviewing the top medical minds for physical and mental health features.’

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WARREN HEATH is a Durbanbred, Cape Town-living, sportsobsessed food and lifestyle photographer. His work has appeared in publications and campaigns around the world, with clients ranging from @home locally to John Lewis internationally. Warren has photographed food for clients such as Kauai, Simply Asia, Rhodes Food Group and Nomu, and has shot the content of 17 food and lifestyle books, some of which have won awards. His lifestyle stories have appeared in local magazines such as House and Leisure as well as international publications such as Elle Decoration UK and Australia’s Real Living. He still aspires to enter the realm of directing.

ZEYD SULAIMAN is Private Edition’s new motoring contributor – and a dreamer by any standard, given that his passion for cars and aircraft started before he could string together a sentence. At age 15, it was the ground-breaking McLaren F1 that sealed the bond on his love of motoring. Now a bit older, wiser and less serious, Zeyd is dad to two superheroes and manages physical assets for Virgin Active SA. So it’s no surprise that he enjoys his time in the gym and spends many weekends blazing trails on his mountain bike. He oozes charm, has an eye for fine wristwatches and catchy fashion statements, and loves the ambience of elegant destinations. A perfect fit, then? We certainly think so.

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CONTRIBUTORS

ANDRÉ WIESNER is a professional writer who lives in a swish mountainside villa in Cape Town with his wife, two dogs, three children and the occasional visiting cobra. Born in 1967, he studied English and politics at the University of Cape Town (UCT). He played Beetle Bailey in the army as the Berlin Wall collapsed, then returned to UCT to while away the rest of his twenties by writing a master’s thesis on violence under the supervision of JM Coetzee. After this career peak he’s worked mostly as a hustling freelancer, a portal news editor and as a tenured lecturer in media studies at UCT. André has won awards for his work and his latest achievement is a Highly Commended in the Pica Features Writer of the Year category. This is the maximum word count…


Ed's Letter.indd 16

2013/12/03 4:33 PM


OPINION

The Easy-money Trap

Words NEIL URMSON and PATRICK LAWLOR

A FINANCIAL WINDFALL – an inheritance, share options that have matured or even a lottery win – sounds like a wonderful situation to be in but it comes with the anguish of deciding what to do with the money. Spend it on a new car or house, go on holiday, pay off your mortgage or invest – or a combination of the above? Even the decision to invest can be fraught with dilemmas. Which asset classes? Which sectors? What proportion to invest in each? And what sort of risk to take on? Before tackling these questions (some of which are likely being thrown at you by others keen to help you find a home for your money – for a fee or commission, of course) it may be best to take a step back. Think things through and take note of the typical behavioural pitfalls people could fall prey to – and avoid them. The one that most typically affects the lucky recipient of unexpected good fortune is what is known in behavioural theory as ‘mental accounting’. The person mentally allocates money to various areas of their life rather than holistically, thus attributing different values to the rands in each category. A good illustration of this is the story of the gambler who finds a R100 chip lying on the floor as he enters the casino. He takes the chip and bets it on his ‘lucky’ number at the

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roulette table. The number comes up, pays out handsomely and our gambler promptly puts the winnings on the same number. Once again, it comes up and the gambler scores. After a continuous lucky streak, the gambler is sitting with a pile of chips worth a few hundred thousand rand, but inevitably his luck runs out and he loses it all. On his way out, he meets an acquaintance who asks how his night went. ‘Not bad,’ he says, ‘I lost R100.’ Our gambler has, of course, lost several hundred thousand rands but he is comfortable because he did not see it as ‘real’ money. He accounted for it in his mind as separate from the money he earns from his job or his investments. Similarly, someone might mentally account for their windfall in a different way they would for their ‘hard-earned income’, and make spending or investment decisions that are more frivolous or risky than with normal Neil Urmson is a wealth manager at Investec Wealth & Investment. For more information, go to investec.co.za/wi.

income. ‘It wasn’t income I was expecting or I had accounted for, so my losses aren’t real,’ they might say after the event. The smart thing to do is treat this decision exactly as you would any other, allocating capital according to your priorities and risk profile. The decision should be divorced from the source of funds, and you should be choosing to retire debt or diversify your assets across asset classes and geographies, based on valuation, long-term financial goals and the diversification of risk. The help of a qualified financial adviser – divorced from any mental accounting that you may fall prey to – is vital. None of this precludes a vanity purchase or speculative flutter in the markets with a portion of the windfall, but only do this after completing the exercise above. This is easier to understand in principle rather than in practice. The temptation to buy that sports car might be too hard to resist… Patrick Lawlor is editor of Investec Wealth & Investment’s publications. He’s had a lengthy career as a financial journalist with many leading business publications.

BROUGHT TO YOU BY INVESTEC WEALTH & INVESTMENT WWW.INVESTEC.CO.ZA/WI

PHOTOGRAPHY AND ILLUSTRATION: SUPPLIED

What to do with that windfall – and how to avoid the behavioural pitfall.


Psst

UTTERLY RANDOM AND OCCASIONALLY TACTICAL TRIVIA

If you’re in the UK before 27 April 2014, make a point of visiting the Museum of London’s ‘The Cheapside Hoard: London’s Lost Jewels’ exhibition. It’s an extraordinary treasure of 500 rare jewellery pieces from the late 16th and early 17th century, discovered by chance in a London cellar in 1912. The craftsmanship is attributed to a single goldsmith jeweller, who created exquisite pieces like this one-of-a-kind watch with a translucent green enamel dial mounted in a single large emerald, a cabochon emerald-and-yellow-gold salamander brooch, as well as startling examples of enamel and gem-set Elizabethan necklace chains decorated with floral motifs. ‘Coloured gemstones, favoured by royalty then as symbols of wealth and power, have had a real revival, with prices per carat for higher-quality rough emeralds having increased sixfold over the past four years and the price of rubies and sapphires growing faster than that of diamonds,’ says Katharina Flohr, Fabergé’s creative and managing director. Peter Carl Fabergé, who was the official goldsmith to the Russian Imperial Court, famously said that he found every gemstone beautiful, regardless of its carat weight, and built his reputation on his skill at showing them to their best advantage. ‘The Cheapside Hoard: London’s Lost Jewels’, sponsored by Fabergé, Gemfields and Coutts, runs at the Museum of London, UK, until 27 April 2014. For further information on Fabergé, visit faberge.com.

The watch that time forgot – one of the remarkable pieces in a stash of rare jewellery saved from oblivion

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TEXT: DEBBIE HATHWAY. PHOTOGRAPHY: SUPPLIED

TIME CAPSULE Earthly treasures


PSST NEWS

MOTHER OF A GUIDE Cape Town gets the LV stamp and joins an illustrious club There are guides and then there are the Louis Vuitton City Guides that rattle the very bones of a city for its secrets. This year, 15 of the world’s most exciting and interesting cities – Beijing, Hong Kong, London, Los Angeles, Mexico City, Miami, Moscow, New York, Paris, São Paulo, Seoul, Sydney, Tokyo, Venice and Cape Town – create the small library. The chartreuse A5-sized guide has Beezy Bailey as the upfront guest. He writes about his love of the Kalk Bay Harbour area and his greening of the Cape Flats one tree at a time. Have a ball exploring chapters such as ‘living as a local’, and sections that highlight the best interior-design shops and farmers’ markets, and where to breakfast in the city. For more details, call 011 784 9854 or 021 405 9700, or visit www.louisvuitton.com.

ON THE DOTTED LINE Signing anything with a Waterman gives the moment weight

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CHAPTER AND VERSE The Cape Grace’s library is a classy boardroom with benefits

A SELL-FLY DATE If you’re selling up, you may wish to keep your passport handy

Know that old Jona Lewie song ‘You’ll Always Find Me in the Kitchen at Parties’? The Cape Grace, member of The Leading Hotels of the World, should have its own version: ‘You’ll Always Find Me in the Library for Meetings’. There’s something about being surrounded by hundreds of books there for guests on ‘honour’ loan, that is, well, civilised. The only distraction is the line-up of titles. A sinful cake collection, seriously delicious cappuccinos, a tea menu and windows that overlook harbour moorings all add to making this room one of the best in the city. Library staff are within sight and reach, but never intrude. Rather famous people stay here from time to time but no-one’s talking. Privacy’s a given. To book, visit capegrace.com or call 021 410 7100.

A partnership between Lew Geffen Sotheby’s International Realty and Avios incentivises homeowners to sign up with the property company. Members of the new Avios Travel Rewards Programme and British Airways Executive Club can collect two Avios for every R100 of property value sold. That means a house sale could net a family a trip to an Indian Ocean island, or to Vic Falls and beyond. On the domestic front, Avios could get you to a major business hub. You can also collect Avios on everyday spending with Avis car hire and Pick n Pay, for example. To find out more and join at no cost, visit avios.com or call the South African customer call centre on 0860 0 AVIOS (0860 0 28467). To apply for an Avios credit card, visit avioscard.co.za.

TEXT: LES AUPIAIS. PHOTOGRAPHY: SUPPLIED

Researching famous signatures is fascinating. Look up the measured scrawls of some of the great leaders of our time – Abraham Lincoln, Napoleon Bonaparte, Gandhi, John F Kennedy. Some might have benefited from holding a Waterman writing instrument. Since the invention of the first refillable fountain pen in 1883 by Lewis Edson Waterman, the brand has been all about innovation. This strategy has led to the brand’s reputation for high art in design and technological excellence. Each pen is unique, exclusive, and continues to reflect the character and temperament of its owner. Waterman remains the epitome of individual elegance. For further information, visit waterman.com.


PSST FASHION

There’s something about a stylish, semi-fitted shirt that should elevate it above high trend. Trend is great. Trend adds excitement and energy to a wardrobe. Trend updates and grabs attention. But when a single shirt hangs there quietly confident in its impeccable credentials – pure silk, motherof-pearl buttons, subtle cuff details – it demands respect. Tucked into a waistband, allowed to flow to the contours of your body, it works hard for its status. Teamed with Thomas Pink cigarette-style wool tux trousers with vertical pockets and silk trim, it’s Astaire and Rogers, Taylor and Burton, Bogart and Bacall… For more information, visit thomaspink.co.za.

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TEXT: LES AUPIAIS. PHOTOGRAPHY: SUPPLIED

SHIRTATIOUS Thomas Pink trumpets that the shirt will take you anywhere


PSST JEWELLERY

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THE SEASON TO SPARKLE Whether you fall in love with colour and sparkle, design or trend, consider the effect of the shape and length of a pair of earrings before you buy. Facial flattery is the goal – longer drops work for long or round face shapes, whereas hoops are the ideal choice to soften a square jaw. 1. 18ct white-gold earrings incorporating 206 diamonds totalling 2ct. R50 000. To find out more, visit uwekoetter.co.za. 2. 18ct white-gold cluster earrings comprising red coral surrounded by amethysts and trilliant-cut blue topaz stones, and anchored by turquoise. R46 100. For details, email james@charlesgreig.co.za or call 011 325 4477. 3. 18ct white-gold earrings set with 114 brilliant-cut diamonds, two oval-cut emeralds and six pear-shaped emeralds (ref: G38LE900). Price on request. For further information, visit piaget.com or call 011 317 2600. 4. 18ct white-gold drop earrings, fully paved with diamonds, from Cartier’s Paris Nouvelle Vague pendant earrings collection. R685 000. For more information, visit cartier.com or call 011 666 2800.

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TEXT: DEBBIE HATHWAY. PHOTOGRAPHY: SUPPLIED

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PSST WATCHES

SMALL BUT PERFECTLY FORMED The ultimate signature When it comes to fine watchmaking standards, the sought-after Poinçon de Genève rating is one of the most stringent. To that end, the Roger Dubuis Manufacture has 60 master craftsmen working in 20 teams, putting in 40 percent more work, to achieve the certification criteria. Their efforts are not unrewarded. The manufacture is the only one to get its entire production certified – that’s 5 000 of the 30 million timepieces produced in Switzerland each year. Only 24 000 watches are certified in total. To qualify for the prestigious mark of approval, their mechanisms must be entirely made, decorated, assembled and adjusted by hand in Geneva. This Roger Dubuis Excalibur 36mm has 48 diamonds on the bezel, which encircles the dramatic markings on the semi-white varnish on the dial. For more information, call Vendôme Distributors on 011 317 2600.

OBJECT OF DESIRE White-diamond wardrobe How do you wear a high-jewellery watch set with 646 white diamonds? Very carefully… But a comfortable fit was a priority for the master craftsmen selected to create this Girard-Perregaux Cat’s Eye High Jewellery timepiece. Their brief was simple. Get the balance right. Perfect proportions; sheer brilliance – the quality of the diamonds secured the F-V VS guarantee. With patience and dexterity, the gem setters take at least 120 hours to transform the oval, horizontally aligned case, dial and bracelet into a multifaceted ‘House of Mirrors’. The emerald-cut stones total about 50ct and lie on an almost invisible white-gold grid provided by the structure of the watch. A single diamond in the heart of the crown is the only rose-cut stone. Additional gem-set links are provided to facilitate a perfect fit on the wrist. To avoid unnecessary handling of the crown, this timepiece incorporates the GP03300-0072 calibre for automatic winding. For further information, call Nicole on 011 372 6000.

DEEPLY SIGNIFICANT Heritage meets innovation The striking simplicity of Officine Panerai’s watch designs is one of the distinguishing factors that sets them apart. Originally designed for the Royal Italian Navy’s underwater commandos, it’s a no-frills, highly practical masculine style that looks just as good on a lady’s wrist. This model from the new Radiomir 1940 collection has a watch face sized at a more feminine 42mm diameter, available with a steel-black dial and alligator strap. The watch shows the transition from the original Radiomir to the first Luminor model of 1950, with its characteristic device protecting the winding crown. The manufacture is representative of the blend of Italian industry, craftsmanship and art that developed when the carefree ’20s gave way to the more sober decade that followed. The new Radiomir 1940 combines the brand’s quintessential innovation and design ethic with reliability and functionality. For details, see page 52 and visit panerai.com.

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PSST WATCHES

STROKE OF GENIUS Let your fingers do the setting

THE ULTIMATE AQUARACER Iconic watch inspired by aquatics

IRRESISTIBLE INNOVATIONS A new benchmark

If its high-precision luxury chronograph can achieve unequalled mechanical accuracy of 1/10th, 1/100th, 1/1000th and 5/10000th of a second, it’s no wonder that TAG Heuer has been the preferred timekeeper from the 1920 Olympic Games to the Indy 500 race today. The brand gets a perfect 10 for prestige and performance, much like Bo Derek, who received her first TAG Heuer watch soon after the launch of her film 10 in 1979. Derek is a sailor and swimmer (she used the Aquaracer to time her training for the 2013 Dardanelles swimming race). Living on a horse ranch, she loves being able to retrieve something out of a water trough without worrying about her watch! The TAG Heuer dive watch was also the first timepiece for Cameron Diaz, the brand’s current ambassador. ‘I wore it as a fashion statement as well as for its utility,’ she says. The 27mm diamond dial diamond bezel in the new Aquaracer collection is the first steel and pink-gold version, and the most feminine. For details, call Picot & Moss on 011 669 0500.

Omega’s advertising campaigns are almost as beautiful as their watches. Both deliver on all counts. The creators of the world’s first truly antimagnetic mechanical watch movement, the Omega Co-Axial calibre 8508, have launched a timepiece resistant to magnetic fields greater than 1,5 tesla (15 000 gauss). It’s no mean feat. The Seamaster Aqua Terra > 15’000 gauss is the new benchmark for magnetic resistance as it uses nonferrous materials in the movement, which is also antimagnetic. And because there’s no need to enclose it in a protective container, it enhances the aesthetic – the case back can be transparent to showcase the movement and there’s room for a date window at 3 o’clock. The watch is presented in a 41,50mm stainless-steel Co-Axial chronometer, with a slightly yellowed, lacquered black dial featuring the legend ‘15’000 gauss’ and the distinctive linear pattern that defines Omega’s Aqua Terra collection. For further information, visit omegawatches.com.

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TEXT: DEBBIE HATHWAY. PHOTOGRAPHY: SUPPLIED

The Rado Esenza Ceramic Touch relies on the touch of your skin during setting – not just through the stainless-steel case back resting against your wrist but also the sweep of your fingertips across the ceramic face. Ceramic is a natural insulator, which makes it the ideal material for a touchsensitive timepiece, while the stainless steel connects watch to body to create a reference for the electronic circuit. When your finger follows a certain pattern across the four electrodes that sit between the quartz movement and the ceramic case, the chip instructs the motor to move the hands in order to set the time. For more information, visit swatchgroup.com.


ON THE OTHER HAND

High Time

Words STEVE KOCHER Photography AUBREY JONSSON/INFIDELS

In fashion, haute couture refers to bespoke design. In the world of watches, haute defines a class.

The entirely in-housemanufactured dial of this watch from Franck Muller’s Infinity Sunrise Collection is carefully milled from a solid silver mass. Set with pavé diamonds, it accentuates the radiance of this exquisite jewel. It’s available in seven sizes, either in 18ct gold or stainless-steel casing. Recommended retail prices range from R225 000 to R495 000

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(the technical component). This integrated manufacture justifies the high price the watch connoisseur pays for haute horlogerie watches. Franck Muller produces most of its components in Switzerland. In their dial workshops, for example, more than 100 procedures are necessary for the manufacture of the watch dial: in the printing room alone, a cycle of lacquering consists of 20 procedures each spaced 35 to 40 minutes apart. The use of precious metals, diamonds and precious stones are as much part of haute horlogerie as the complicated mechanical movements that have monopolised the headlines in the past few years. This is the part of watchmaking that can offer once-off exclusivity. Jewellers, like couturiers, share the desire of creating unique pieces of rare beauty. Just recently, Girard-Perregaux, the Swiss manufacture de haute horlogerie, released the Cat’s Eye High Jewellery creation: a mechanical masterpiece in 18ct white gold, with the dial, case and bracelet completely pavé-set with 645 emerald-cut diamonds weighing 50ct. Ticket price? One million Swiss francs (about R11 million). And that’s rich territory in anyone’s terms.

PHOTOGRAPHY OF PRODUCT: SUPPLIED

THE FRENCH TERM haute means ‘high’ but in the context of luxury consumer goods it translates to ‘high-end’. Haute couture is about the manufacturing of unique, made-to-order outfits by famous fashion designers at a super-luxury price level. In France the term is protected by law, whereas in Milan, London, New York and Tokyo it is used loosely by fashion brands for high-priced custom-made outfits. To earn the right to be called a haute couture house in France, members need to follow certain rules. They have to own an atelier in Paris employing a minimum of 15 people full time, and present a collection of 35 outfits twice a year (with each outfit retailing at hundreds of thousands of rands). Not surprisingly, the number of haute couture houses has decreased from more than 100 in the late ’40s to a dozen in recent years. Brands retaining this status year on year are Chanel and Christian Dior, while many others like Escada, Lanvin, Nina Ricci, Pierre Balmain, Ted Lapidus, Emanuel Ungaro and Yves Saint Laurent moved on to prêt-à-porter, which delivers a much better return on investment. In the world of luxury watchmaking, the access conditions to the label ‘haute horlogerie’ remain largely undefined and unregulated. The capital expenditure required to custom-make a watch with an exclusive look and movement would be in the millions of Swiss francs. It’s unthinkable. Haute horlogerie is best translated as ‘fine watchmaking’. The Fondation de la Haute Horlogerie was established in 2005 by the South-Africanowned Richemont group (Cartier, Piaget, Jaeger-LeCoultre, IWC and so forth), Audemars Piguet and Girard-Perregaux. More brands have since joined the foundation or associated themselves with the same values, but it’s still far from being the official legislator of this industry. My view is that the haute horlogerie status of a brand should be awarded by the sum of in-house artisan skills and industrial capabilities with the company’s medium-term goal to fully integrate the production in-house. This would include the design and manufacture of the watch case, dial and bracelet (the aesthetic components) as well as R&D teams and master watchmakers creating and producing their own movements


WINE

Dark Secrets Words LES AUPIAIS

SHOPPING FOR WINE can be daunting, especially when you are looking for that perfect gift or the ideal selection to match the food you will be serving your guests for dinner. On these occasions, not only does the liquid inside the bottle have to be delicious, it must also look appealing on the outside. So often I hear of people who have bought a wine purely for its label and then hope to hell it tastes as good as it looks! Wine producers are very aware that the visual appeal of a bottle is of upmost importance so as to attract the shopper to buy their product. There are, of course, some wineries who have successfully designed their own labels, but those who don’t have the expertise can seek help from several outstanding design companies. However, this is an expensive exercise that can add to the total cost of the wine. Here’s a small selection of some luscious wines with interesting and contemporary labels that will delight your eye way before that first heady taste.

MÉTHODE CAP CLASSIQUE • Môreson Miss Molly Bubbly non-vintage, Franschhoek: Miss Molly is the delightful resident Weimaraner at Môreson, and the bubbly is equally delightful! • Domaine des Dieux Rose of Sharon Brut Rosé 2008, Hemel en Aarde Valley: Called after the owner, this is a creamy rich bubbly made from Pinot Noir and Chardonnay.

• Waterkloof Circle of Life 2011, Somerset West: An harmonious blend of Sauvignon Blanc and Chenin, with a wraparound label showing the life cycle of the vine. • Koelfontein Chardonnay 2011, Ceres: Recently awarded a Gran D’or medal at the Michelangelo Awards, this wine is made at the only certified winery in Ceres. • Miles Mossop Wines Saskia 2011, Stellenbosch: An unusual blend of Chenin Blanc, Viognier, Verdelho and Clairette Blanche, this five-star wine is named after Mossop’s daughter. • Neethlingshof The Six Flowers (The Short Story Collection) 2012, Stellenbosch: Perfect for alfresco summer lunches; made from six white varietals. • Botanica Chenin Blanc 2011, Stellenbosch: Made with grapes grown near Clanwilliam, this silky wooded Chenin got five stars in Platter’s Wine Guide 2013.

WHITE • Journey’s End “Haystack” Chardonnay 2012, Sir Lowry’s Pass: Excellent quality and value, with the name coming from the age-old practise of planting wheat in between the vineyards. • Usana Pinot Gris 2012, Stellenbosch: Popular overseas, Pinot Gris is finding a niche locally – this example can be enjoyed on The Blue Train! • Lothian Vineyards Riesling 2011, Elgin: From a relatively new winery, this Rhine Riesling is perfect with Thai food.

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ROSÉ • DeMorgenzon Garden Vineyards Rosé 2012, Stellenbosch:

An appealing oak-fermented Shiraz-dominated rosé labelled with a romantic engraving of William Edward Frost’s ‘The Disarming of Cupid’. • Mount Abora Saffronne Cinsaut Blanc de Noir 2013, Swartland: This highly sought-after rosé is made purely from Cinsault. RED • Eisen & Viljoen Normandie 2012, Franschhoek: The magnificent packaging harmonises with an intricate blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Petit Verdot. • Morgenster 2001, Somerset West: A traditional, elegant label for this fine older-vintage Bordeaux-style blend. • The High Road Classique 2009, Stellenbosch: A high-quality blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc. • Iona One Man Band 2008, Elgin: Named after a sculpture by Bruce Arnott, owner Rozy Gunn’s favourite sculptor, this wine encompasses exactly what Iona is

all about – harmony and unison. • Beau Constantia Lucca 2011, Constantia: Even though this blend of Merlot and Cabernet Franc is only two years old, it has appealing elegance and graceful mouth feel. • La Bri Syrah 2010, Franschhoek: Award winner in the 2013 Top 12 Shiraz SA Wines Challenge. • Hillcrest Estate Quarry Merlot 2009, Durbanville: The design on the label is an artist’s impression of the patchwork rock face of the quarry on the estate. • Paul Wallace Black Dog Malbec 2009, Elgin: Winemaker Wallace sums it up as ‘dark in colour, well muscled, intense and full of character’ – just like his canine friend Jake! • Painted Wolf ‘Guillermo’ Pinotage 2010, Swartland: An award-winning wine honouring the man who made it – Billy Hughes, alias Guillermo. For more information, call Mike Bampfield-Duggan at Wine Concepts on 021 671 9030.

PHOTOGRAPHY: SUPPLIED

Confused by all the labels out there? Here’s how to stock a cellar that delivers style and substance.


TREND

Nedvin pinstripe suit R9 999, Tiger of Sweden. Semi-cutaway collar, but a Thomas hunk Pink of junk

Front Row Suits What seemed like nothing to most people, Mark Mercury transformed into the most desirable vintage car on show. Words KATHY MALHERBE Photography JACQUES WEYERS

Front-row Suits A suit can make you look seriously sexy or a fashion disaster. The right silhouette and accessories make all the difference. Production LUANNE TOMS Words DEBBIE HATHWAY Photography JACQUES WEYERS

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TREND

BY APPOINTMENT Two tailors, four fittings, up to six weeks. That’s what it takes to get your personalised suit from Johannesburg’s made-to-measure experts. The result? Show-stopping style. Swiss cotton shirt with medium-dress collar R2 900, wool and cashmere jacket R14 500, matching trousers R5 900 and waistcoat R3 900, and tie R1 500, all Row-G; Omega watch R47 982,46, Tanur

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Model: David Bruce/Boss Models. Grooming: Karen Haacke/Sixlove Artist Management. Fashion assistant: Marilize Uys. Shot on location at Klûk CGDT STOCKISTS: ROW-G (BY APPOINTMENT ONLY) 011 853 0000; TANUR 021 418 2530; THOMAS PINK 011 325 4098; TIGER OF SWEDEN 011 684 2010, 021 421 9177

TREND

Swiss cotton shirt R2 400, wool and mohair jacket R14 800, matching trousers R6 600, and handmade two-fold silk satin tie R1 500, all Row-G

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A DIFFERENT CUT Ronnie McDonald, head designer of menswear for Tiger of Sweden, is obsessed with a few things: rock ’n’ roll, guitars, statement rings. When it comes to suits, it’s the feel of the fabric, the stretch of the weave and the simplicity of the design. Tiger of Sweden’s slim silhouette is its signature, with the 24-hour suit styled to go from work to play, with a simple change of shirt taking the look from classic to edgy. Made-to-measure fans can choose from five styles, two fits and several different collars. McDonald recommends the two-button jacket to new suit wearers. ‘Tiger of Sweden’s jacket length is 75cm but jackets can go 1cm longer,’ he says. ‘Wear your suits with tonal socks or none at all if you’re opting for the shorter, tapered leg.’ His best advice? Don’t be afraid to have a suit altered to fit your shape. Shirt R1 999, Evert 14 suit R7 999 and Rizzoly hanky R599, all Tiger of Sweden; tie R1 500, Row-G


TREND

Left Field Sports scientist Dr Ross Tucker gets into trouble for speaking out. It doesn’t faze him. What he’d really like is for a whole lot of people to start listening up.

Words ANDRÉ WIESNER Photography WARREN RASMUSSEN

‘IF DR ROSS TUCKER thinks he has the answers, then perhaps he would be willing to share them.’ Don’t you love it when people speak about you in the third person – while talking directly to you? It’s both weird and funny, and it happens a lot. On this occasion, in more or less these words, it was in a letter from the then minister of sport, written as ‘World War III’ loomed and South Africa reeled at allegations that its star in the women’s 800m, Caster Semenya, was a hermaphrodite. Dr Ross Tucker, eminent sports scientist, 32, still shakes his head in amused dismay. ‘I wrote back, saying, “Well, I am, and I have.”’ Am willing. Have spoken up. Am hereby doing it again. Tucker’s publicly declared position, briefly, had been that, whereas the Winnies and Juliuses oversimplified things by describing the allegations as racist, the Semenya affair raised issues about sporting ethics that were more complex than this viewpoint allowed. As he said at the time, the story was getting in the way of the facts, many of which were kept quiet. The controversy was ‘badly managed within South Africa’, and Tucker was incensed by the then minister’s remarks that ‘a third world war’ would erupt if Semenya

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were banned from international athletics – ‘just ridiculous, bordering on childish and reckless,’ says Tucker. When the letter arrived, it was to request that he cease airing these criticisms. To the then minister, it seems, Tucker was a naive upstart; to Tucker, the establishment was again ignoring qualified expertise and, it may be inferred, the honest aplomb of sport itself. A senior lecturer with UCT’s unit for Exercise Science and Sports Medicine (ESSM), he speaks of the frustration he experiences in a country ‘with this enormously rich pool of talent’ but that ‘never quite gets there’, partly because the bigwigs are ‘not quite up to’ that crucial job: ‘making those last, little investments’, ones at which sports science can excel. There are ‘boring definitions’ of the discipline; the one he likes turns on the ‘half-a-percent concept’. Watch Usain Bolt win the 100m and you think, ‘Holy crap, he’s so much faster than everyone else!’ The trick is to close your eyes – and listen to the subtle music. The gun goes off, the seconds count down. At 9,58 seconds, Bolt crosses the line. A beep sounds, then another for second place, for third… What to the eye is a gulf separating Bolt from the others is to the ear a continuous stream of sound: beep-beep-beep-beep.


POINT OF VIEW


TREND

TUCKER ON FORM ‘How do you evolve? In sports or business, it’s the same: the team that wins this year is less likely to win next year. The tendency is to think, well, we’ve done it – we just need to keep doing the same thing. But the environment is always changing and your opposition’s always analysing you. There’s a wartime saying: Never send a messenger on the same route twice, because the enemy will learn his movements… and get him. Success is probably the best predictor of future failure.’ Tucker says, ‘In high performance, whether it’s sports or business, the beep-beep – the 0,5% – separating Usain Bolt from whoever came fourth isn’t much different from the beep-beep between the winning company and the one that went bust. That beep-beep is motivational. It makes people realise the differences they see as big are really small. Then you introduce them to the concept of marginal gains. To close the gap or keep it, you’re not trying to be 0,5% better. You want to be 0,1% better, five times over.’


POINT OF VIEW

‘Sports science exists in the gap between the beeps. My job is to understand why there is a gap. If I’m in front, I want to keep it; if I’m behind, to close it. What’s the difference between the guy who wins Olympic gold and the one who comes fourth? On average over the past 50 years it’s half a percent. That’s the difference between Bolt – legend, gold – and fourth…’ He pauses. ‘Who came fourth?’ So, sure, personal trainers abound, but they’re not sports scientists as such; rugby teams have strength and conditioning people – again, ‘a separate classification’. And, yes, gigs do crop up. He himself was a part-time consultant to SA Sevens Rugby and now consults to Kenyan Sevens Rugby, not to mention the slew of high-level odd-jobs he’s done for sporting federations worldwide. ‘But there isn’t a single full-time sports scientist employed by a sport [in South Africa].’ The UK, for instance, has scads of them, even to apparently ‘absurd levels of specialisation’, like the socalled horizontal-jump specialist, a long-jump lab coat who must have, at entry level, a PhD in engineering. ‘They invest in the beep-beep,’ he says. And here? ‘In South Africa they either undervalue expertise or have false expectations. For the last seven, eight years it’s been one dead-end brick wall after another, dealing with government and sports federations.’ He adds, ‘I always get into trouble for saying this stuff…’ Charging at walls, pushing towards barriers and fiery limits. This is Tucker territory, the zone he works as a specialist both in high-performance sport and an ivory-tower tearaway who delights

Call him ‘Ross Tucker’ to his face and he’ll smile wryly; call him ‘publicity hungry’ and it’s ‘almost hurtful, offensive’. It’s not only Pistorius’ ‘most common criticism’ of him, but what he sometimes overhears behind his back among other scientists: ‘Oh, that guy’s just a media junkie looking for fame…’ (What aren’t you getting?) Met in person, he’s not the overcompensating pencil-neck you might idly imagine. ‘Howzeet, howzeet,’ he murmurs to passersby in the corridors upstairs of ESSM. Downstairs is the squashcourt hubbub of the gym, laboratories and walkways, festive with students, almost all of them girls. But here it is quiet, with windows offering glimpses of Table Mountain. Nor is any violent horseplay in progress in the office he shares with a coterie of other staff – just head-down, tenure-track efficiency. Horizontal-jump specialists at work. Tucker goes inside to fetch something. Stubbled and shavenheaded, he’s dressed in track top and chinos, trim and solidly built, and reminiscent of a coach you might have had in school, the sort who read books and stuff – composed, tough but fair, comfortable to be around. He steps out again. Did you know, before his semiretirement, Tim Noakes had his office a few doors away? There’s a fatedness to that, as Noakes is a name that would loom large in a biography about Tucker: the childhood in Vanderbijlpark, his father a devoted marathon runner; Easter holidays in Cape Town for the Two Oceans; the buzz of athletic solidarity, freebie-gift magazines dense in racing stats (‘I was

Gents’ jacket R5 995 and trousers R2 550, both Paul Smith. Shot on location at Cape Town Stadium

To the then minister, it seems, Tucker was a naive upstart; to Tucker, the establishment was again ignoring qualified expertise and, it may be inferred, the honest aplomb of sport itself. in communicating with the masses, giving omnivorous coverage to sports through newspaper articles, talk-radio spots, corporate speaking, interviews with all from CNN and Sky News to Al Jazeera, and – notably – his blog site The Science of Sport. Begun for laughs with a university mate, it’s now hugely popular and lent oomph by a Twitter account with 37 000-plus followers. Not content with entering the debate about Semenya, he has been a leading voice of dissent in another matter also involving a sports idol and endowed with global incandescence: the question of whether Oscar Pistorius should be allowed to compete against able-bodied runners. Tucker presented his objections in 2007 in an open letter to the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF), arguing that, for a variety of reasons, those famous prosthetics confer an advantage, one he puts at ‘between six and 10 seconds’. ‘Almost any engineer or physiologist would know this,’ Tucker says. ‘It was pretty obvious, but no-one was saying it.’ Maybe for the sake of a quiet life. There were angry emails, how-dare-yous, ‘pressure put on bosses to silence me… lots of emotion’. After the IAAF banned Pistorius from able-bodied athletics, he appealed against the decision in 2008 and had it revoked. Tucker continues to nurse doubts about the ruling – ‘a complete farce,’ he told Runner’s World in 2011. For his turn, Pistorius told the Mail Online in 2013: ‘There are many ill-informed arguments. There are people who are commenting for personal gain or to make a name for themselves or to be controversial.’

obsessed’); the chance benefactor at a party who – hearing that Tucker, 12, had started running and saw a future in sports and medicine – suggested he read Noakes’ The Lore of Running. Which he did, re-reading it ‘every year for five years’ in high school, until the day came to pass when Noakes, inspiration and role model, was also his doctoral supervisor. Tucker’s PhD thesis would merit a chapter at least in the biography. A turning point, it sent him in flight from academia and, armed with a diploma in sports management, he entered the business world for several years, eventually making his way back to the fold. ‘I wanted to be more real-world,’ he says, an approach he suggests is as strong today as it was then. Whereas academic activity is usually an end in itself, Tucker’s stance is that sportsscience know-how should make a difference to what’s going on out there in the world. ‘We hold such interesting, valued information, yet very few are willing to speak to any other than the scientific community. It seems almost irresponsible to have an opinion on anti-doping, or Oscar, whatever, and not tell people… ‘What people see as my outspokenness is just someone having an opinion in order to add a perspective to a discussion they’re having. It’s to add to an intellectual discourse that already exists. ‘In academia you learn everything about one topic. It gets silo’ed off from the rest of the world. It’s like a straw, a narrow column, as high as you want it to be, but it doesn’t go anywhere. I’d rather be like a bucket of water that goes everywhere.’

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GIFT GUIDE

Espresso maker R10 990, KitchenAid. Distortion candlestick R385, Paul Smith. Fornasetti Bacio scented candle R1 980, Apsley 2. Leica X Vario (Typ 107) R36 995, Orms. Christofle Jardin d’Eden silver knife and fork R2 000 each, The Wish Collection. Great Characters Leonardo da Vinci Limited Edition fountain pen R30 300, Montblanc. Dom Pérignon Vintage 2004 Limited Edition by Jeff Koons from R1 349, leading liquor merchants. Bamboo handbag R23 230, Gucci. Model yacht R2 280, Delos. Tom Dixon nutcracker R925, Créma Design. Crash watch in 18ct pink gold with brilliant-cut diamonds R700 000 and Juste un Clou bracelet in pink gold R336 000, both Cartier. Notebook R1 350 and men’s wallet R2 075, both Paul Smith. Pinarello Dogma 64.1 road bike R139 000, John O’Connor Cycles. Vintage Louis Vuitton travel trunk R55 000, Delos


TREND

Spoils It’s been a roller-coaster year with demands from every quarter. Stress, pressure and time poverty. Isn’t it time to reward yourself for a stellar performance? We thought we’d put a few items in temptation’s way… Production LUANNE TOMS Photographs WARREN HEATH Location DELOS

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GIFT GUIDE

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W tote R37 500, Louis Vuitton. Scale R3 400, Delos. Le Jacquard Français Double Jeu table napkins R350 each and Baccarat Harcourt tall red-wine glasses R2 800 each, all The Wish Collection. Antique blown-glass display domes from R1 700, Delos. Made-to-measure shirts with cut-corner two-button cuff and rounded one-button cuff (price on request; by appointment only), Row-G. Lee Broom crystal light bulb and pendant R3 285,45, Créma Design. Moët & Chandon Impérial with Golden Glimmer Chiller from R399, leading liquor merchants. 18ct yellow-gold cushion-shaped amethyst bangle with four diamonds R285 000, 18ct yellow-gold oval topaz bangle with baguette-cut diamonds R230 000, 18ct yellow-gold oval and cushionshaped turquoise and amethyst bangle R225 000, all Charles Greig. Melrose Derby shoes R7 900, Louis Vuitton. Customised hand-built split-cane fly-fishing rod (price on request), Stephen Dugmore. Aqua di Parma Colonia Eau de Cologne (500ml) R4 300 and Ralph Lauren Duchess scented candle R650, both Apsley 2. Model car R1 048,85, Aston Martin


TREND

Mercury in Retrofit How a hunk of junk became the most desirable vintage car on show. Words DEBBIE HATHWAY Photography WARREN RASMUSSEN

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MAGNIFICENT OBSESSION

A FORD FAIRLANE 500 five-litre V8 gives a throaty growl as Mark Mercury turns the key in the ignition. It’s a special sound for classic wheels: a 1936 Plymouth pick-up that he’s built up from next to nothing. When the outline was spotted in a nearby field, only the head and chassis remained. The owner, who had intended restoring it himself but wasn’t quick enough to store the stripped parts safely, happily relinquished the ‘piece of scrap’ to Mercury. Then he saw (or rather felt) the final result – a twinge of envy, even regret. The burnished burgundy pick-up, one of the rarest of the Plymouths manufactured prior to the start of the Second World War, is now a major attraction at Cape Town Street Rod Club events and car shows, drawing admirers like bees to a honeypot. Mercury has tinkered with cars since he was at school but his knack for restoration came later. When he was courting the woman who would become his wife, he met a family friend who was restoring the ‘ugliest bakkie [he’d] ever seen’. Little did he know that, 20 years later, he’d be busy with a makeover on the same vehicle – the ’36 Plymouth – with his youngest daughter as chief mechanic. Two of his three daughters share his passion for cars, and friends and family are just a phone call away when they need help. After researching what the restored Plymouth should look like, it took them just five weekends to build it up in Mercury’s back yard. ‘My late mom used to say if you haven’t got a lot of money, you must at least have brains. So we have to depend on them,’ he laughs. It’s a labour of love. This curvy beauty is probably one of the most interesting hybrids on the road, having been licensed after passing its roadworthy test in 2010. Beneath her wine-coloured sheen are Beetle fenders, a Jaguar suspension and diff, a Ford Courier brake booster and BMW master cylinder for stopping power, a Toyota Hilux petrol tank and Chrysler cap, as well as Corsa bakkie seats. The hubcaps and wheels are off a Nissan GT-R Skyline. ‘I sit and think these things through. It must work!’ says Mercury. Because parts are no longer available for such an old model, everything had to be made from scratch in his workshop, including the doors, tailgate, exhaust and an aluminium gear lever that was made to resemble a piston head. The same goes for the bodywork, spray painting, wiring and interior – nothing went to the shop. ‘People told me I couldn’t rod a bakkie; it doesn’t look right. I had to prove to myself that I could do it,’ says Mercury. ‘I’ve built up quite a few cars already, including two Ford bakkies and a Ford Ikon. Fords are my favourites, because I love their shape.’ Mercury loves participating in charity runs with the car club. ‘I can’t wait to take it on the road… My bakkie must ride!’ he says. Top speed? Well, that depends on his foot. So far Mercury hasn’t had the heart to part with any of his creations, although he has had several offers to purchase. He simply stores them wherever he can find space. Next up? A 1934 Dodge sedan.

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PANERAI UNPLUGGED

Time Travellers In Italy’s art capital of Florence, the locals live and breathe history, storytelling and style. One watchmaker added to that, craftsmanship and technology. Words DEBBIE HATHWAY

A PROCESSION WINDS ITS WAY DOWN the Via Dei Bardi, a typically narrow Florentine street on the south bank of the Arno River. A woman on a bicycle pedals comfortably ahead of a taxi, a truck, a car and a scooter, in single file. There is no hooting, no shouting, no attempt to overtake. And when a pedestrian decides to cross the road, they all slow to a stop and wait patiently. It’s one of the best Italian traits. In Florence, even the dogs are chilled. Visitors are advised to do as the locals do – take time, be patient, and leave your high heels at home if you’re planning a lot of pedestrian exploration. The uneven surfaces underfoot are unforgiving, but there are those who won’t compromise on glamour. Our tour guide, Elisabetha, agrees: ‘I’m Italian; I must satisfy my eye first.’ A sixinch heel warrants transport à la mode – on the back of a scooter, sans helmet. We’re in Florence to immerse ourselves in history, art and culture, and to gain insight into Officine Panerai’s Tuscan heritage. What better way to celebrate its affinity with Galileo, the founder of modern science, than with a recently opened exhibition at the museum that bears his name – the Museo Galileo. Located in the 11th-century Palazzo Castellani, ‘Galileo and the Measurement of Time’ showcases the inventor’s discoveries in timekeeping instruments across three rooms, with the Panerai

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Jupiterium dominating the second. Built and donated by Officine Panerai, it’s a highly complicated mechanical planetarium clock with a perpetual calendar that depicts Galileo’s telescopic view of the sun, moon, Jupiter and four of its moons in relation to the earth in 1610. The masterpiece weighs 110kg and comprises 1 532 mostly titanium parts. This is the introduction to a tour that underpins everything Panerai’s stood for since it began manufacturing precision instruments for the Royal Italian Navy in the 19th century. It’s also well known for its subsequent development of the Radiomir and Luminor models, memorable for their superb Italian design and Swiss craftsmanship (see more on page 28). Elisabetha lists imagination, creativity and perseverance (especially in the face of adversity) among other Italian attributes. The evidence is everywhere. Florence remains largely unchanged since the 16th century, and frescoes, paintings and sculptures abound in museums, galleries, palaces, churches, monasteries and squares, as well as on street corners. Across the river from the Museo Galileo, far beneath the Piazzale Michelangelo that affords arguably the best views of the ancient city, there are hidden treasures like Alessandro Dari’s ‘den’. The new Panerai Exclusive Guide 2013 directs tourists to this master goldsmith, pharmacist

[Opposite] The Panerai Jupiterium is a complex recreation of the systems of the universe as conceived by Galileo


The subject matter of these intricate carvings is immensely varied, ranging from fables to caricatures of early European arrivals in Japan, and from the animals of the zodiac to erotica.

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and sculptor at his Museo Bottega ‘because alchemists still exist in the Oltrarno quarter’. Raphael’s Madonna of the Goldfinch was discovered there two centuries ago. Dari works at a small, cluttered workbench in what feels like a sacred space, while you browse among his aweinspiring collections. His themes are spiritual, romantic, otherworldly and poetic; his concepts unforgettable. Appointed artist to the Vatican in 2006, Dari’s work is on exhibition in the Museo degli Argenti at the Palazzo Pitti, former summer residence of the Medici family that ruled Florence during the Italian Renaissance. Moving on in search of the artisanal leather district and the promise of a bespoke shoe that embraces the foot, my route reveals the Piazza Santa Spirito with its magnificent church. The sound of hammering and masculine banter emanates from the open doorway of Roberto Ugolini, where three cobblers create made-to-measure men’s footwear. A new customer will wait five or six months for a pair of their handmade shoes, ‘depending on the choice of leather and type of construction’. Expect to pay no less than €1 300 a pair. A few streets away, if you’re fortunate enough to find a pair of sandals that you like, but the straps are too loose, there’s a shoemaker who’ll adjust them for you overnight. The result? A perfect fit. There’s no doubt that the best way to experience Florence is on foot. After a walk around the Palazzo Pitti’s galleries and royal apartments, which house some of the

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Medici family’s extensive collections, I cross the square to what looks like a small art gallery. Artwork adorns the walls and the floor space is occupied by antique collectables: museum-quality marble inlay tables set with semiprecious and hard stones in the Renaissance tradition, hand-carved sculptures and fountains as well as mosaic panels. There’s an eye-catching, elaborate gold frame around a colourful painting of shells just inside the entrance. On further enquiry, the ‘painting’ is revealed as a perfectly crafted mosaic on a background of lapis lazuli. The four months’ work translates to €37 000. And there’s a commissioned life-size portrait of a Chinese businessman in the portfolio that looks better than the reference painting, 18 months and a small fortune later. They’re worth every cent. This is Pitti Mosaici, a fourth-generation De Filippis business quite literally built on stone – a family passion that began with creating marble sculptures in the 19th century and now incorporates a design studio that is expert at ‘transferring the beauty of this jewellery into space’. Emilio II (Ilio) is the creative genius behind pieces designed for a client list that ranges from royalty to Rothschilds. ‘The entire studio participates in important work, to improve, to push our limits,’ says Ilio. ‘My two sons are in the business now, but this is not just for the family; it’s also for the city. This is one of the last workshops that can compete with the museums in restoration, but our art is almost extinct. I’m thinking of opening a school.’


PHOTOGRAPHY: CORBIS/GREATSTOCK!; SUPPLIED

(From far left) Panerai is famous for its creation of Radiomir, first developed to improve visibility on sighting instruments and dials for the Royal Italian Navy; a vintage Panerai, dated 1949; Florentine streets are lined with architecturally preserved buildings and artistic monuments

One of the bridges that lead travellers back to the historical centre of town is the Ponte Vecchio. En route, you’ll catch sight of sun worshippers basking at Florence Beach (bizarrely, next to the river) while a lifeguard meticulously rakes the sand into order. The city is pristine, especially around the Piazza del Duomo, where every building has a story. There is as much to appreciate in the landmark cathedral, the Palazzo Vecchio and the Uffizi Gallery as there is in several of the eateries and boutiques. Bypass the outdoor tables and venture into the bowels of Buca San Giovanni, a restaurant in the vaults of the former Baptistery of San Giovanni sacristy that dates back to 1882. It contains an original fresco by the Florentine painter Giotto di Bondone, and the bar is a 15th-century antique. Or visit Officine Panerai to see some limitededition pieces at the historic boutique that, since 1860, has housed a store, repair shop and watchmaking school. Another way to tap into the time sensitivity of the region, its people and its pastimes is to drive into the Tuscany countryside to sample the wine culture and extra-virgin olive oil products. Casa Emma in Chianti offers both. You’re invited to eat the recently launched skincare range incorporating the latter ingredient, but if you prefer something more substantial, try the handmade pasta of the day. Flavoured with traditional ingredients, it’s the perfect accompaniment to the Chianti Classico. And to finish? Home-made almond biscotti dipped in Vin Santo, the estate’s dessert wine. ‘It’s tradition in this region, but

to me you’re destroying eight years of work,’ muses our host, Paolo. For entertainment value and a culinary experience of a different kind, visit the famous Greve butchery, Antica Macelleria Cecchini. Now in the hands of Dario Cecchini, it’s been the family business for more than 250 years. He impresses not only with his blaring rock music, knife brandishing and spread of complimentary wine, unsalted bread (all the salt you need is in the meat) and extra-virgin olive oil, but also with his ethics. He’s skilled at getting the most out of the meat with minimal waste. It’s a philosophy that’s not just about economy, but also about taking responsibility for, and being respectful of, the life the animal has given. Even vegetarians could appreciate that. Butchers, artists, shoemakers and famous watchmakers have fallen under Florence’s spell. Giovanni Panerai, the businessman and craftsman behind the watch brand’s legendary deep-sea aesthetic and function, found synergy in Florentine authenticity, creativity and passion – and centuries later, the city would still enthrall him. He may have marked time in spectacular fashion, but controlling it is impossible. On an unplanned visit to Florence you may be tempted to ask someone when to go (anywhere). I tried it on Sergio, the Hotel Brunelleschi’s concierge. He simply smiled, peered tolerantly at me over his spectacles, and said, ‘When you feel like it.’ For further information, visit panerai.com.

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FEATURE

Up There With the Best You don’t own a gyrocopter – you have a deep and meaningful relationship with it and its financial fringe benefits. Words KATHY MALHERBE Photographs JEAN TRESFON, IRENE MCCULLAGH

WHAT WAS ONCE CONSIDERED an activity only practised by ‘those on the fringes of aviation lunacy’ (a term once used by an aviation journo in the 1990s in reference to gyropilots) has grown to what is probably the fastest growing sector of sport aviation. Gyropilots are still crazy, but this time they’re absolutely crazy about their gyroplanes that turn their dreams of reaching for the skies into reality. If you could only ask former Royal Air Force wing commander Ken Wallis, the engineer extraordinaire who built and flew Little Nellie in the James Bond movie You Only Live Twice. At the age of 95 this nonagenarian was still trying to beat the gyro air-speed record… Gyroplanes, or more commonly gyrocopters, had a rather unmerited bad rep initially. At best, they were called quirky. Thanks to modern technology, the design has stayed the same – but refinement, engine capabilities and composite material today make it a far safer and more powerful machine. The gyro is now at the hub of mainstream aviation. Butch Brown says, ‘At first gyros were not readily accepted and considered dangerous. This perception changed with time as people started understanding what the modern

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sport gyro was all about. They are very safe flying machines when flown within their envelope by competent pilots.’ He says in South Africa, where our climate is perfect for open-cockpit flying, gyros are predominantly bought by recreational pilots. They are not just boy’s toys, though – because they can fly low enough over fields, they are used extensively commercially for dispersing sterilised coddling moths (really) into crops. The gyrocopter is a hybrid between a fixed-wing aircraft and helicopter, and is officially called a gyroplane. Considered one of the safest forms of aviation, it cannot stall or spin when flying at low airspeeds, like an aeroplane or microlight does, and requires a significantly smaller area for landing. The obvious question is how and why. Sometimes a little technology is reassuring before leaving terra firma. So, briefly: the gyro is in a permanent state of autorotation, which means that the effort required to fly and land it is much reduced compared with a helicopter. The gyrocopter’s engine is not connected to the rotors – instead, the airflow passing through the rotors keeps them turning – so there is no risk of the rotors slowing down even if the engine fails.


Altona Airfield is a small microlight airstrip that sits in between expansive fields of canola

Add the great all-round visibility and the relatively low cost of operation to the ease of flying these incredible machines, and it is obvious why more and more pilots are converting to gyrocopters and wannabe aerial junkies are steadily taking up this sport. For between R820 000 and R1,2 million a pop you can buy yourself a new Magni, the Rolls-Royce of gyroplanes that Butch Brown imports. To take off, you need (liquidity aside) a National Pilot Licence (NPLGyroplane), which involves theoretical instruction and 30 to 40 hours of flying – 15 of those dual and the balance solo. The good news is that, with R1 000 of unleaded petrol, you can travel about 500km between fill-ups and a jerry can for emergencies. The Magni M22 Voyager has side compartments for luggage. Although you need a short runway to take off, you land like a parachutist: in pilot talk, a zero forward-roll landing. Which means, technically, you can land almost anywhere – legally, you should have permission. Insurance won’t pay if you pop into a wine estate for the afternoon and crash during takeoff or landing. Which is unlikely, because another great advantage gyros have over other aircraft is their inability to fall out of the sky.

In the improbable event of an engine problem, the autorotating rotor blades become your parachute. ‘The machine will float to the ground like a sycamore seed,’ says pilot and professional photographer Jean Tresfon. Not to sound like a helicopter-damning soapboxer, a helicopter will take a lot more effort to get on the ground safely. In short, gyros can do 90 percent of what helicopters can do, have fewer moving parts (a good thing) and are far easier on the pocket. So what’s it like to fly? Tucked into the open Magni M16 tandem-trainer gyrocopter, helmeted and goggled, one feels like the hero in the novel Biggles Buys The Sky. In a dual-control gyro (in order to experience actually flying) you are the rear gunner, so to speak. Initially, the joystick between your knees moves around alarmingly, as if some airborne poltergeist is at work, but the distraction is soon forgotten. A ‘Romeo Delta Lima, rolling 02…’ later and it’s a short takeoff before the sky is the playground. Once at altitude, an unexpected and rather welcome temperature inversion ensures that it’s pleasantly warm during the two-hour flight, even though it’s a winter’s day. With their permanently autorotating blades, gyrocopters are legendary for handling turbulence. The

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It produced a combination of delightful adrenaline and stomach-stopping fear.

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FEATURE

rotor acts like a massive gyroscope in gusty conditions, so you aren’t tossed about. The proof is in the pudding, and when we fly over Constantiaberg and practically high-five a group of hikers at the top, the turbulence on the lee side of the mountain did make our Little Nellie have a bit of a wobble. It produced a combination of delightful adrenaline and stomach-stopping fear. Not to mention an excuse to grab onto the 6,4-f00t eye candy flying the gyro (just for a few seconds). At a cruising speed of 70 to 90mph (about 112 to 144km/h) and a maximum permissable speed of 125mph (about 200km/h), the gyro can offer a leisurely aerial meander. From Blouberg to Stellenbosch (the circuitous route) we have a close look at the surfers in huge swell at Outer Kom, hover above a southern right whale mother and her calf in False Bay, and execute a missile-like touch landing in a fantasy of yellow canola in Philadelphia. A short stint at the controls is surprisingly simple – move the joystick left or right (and back a little as it dips if you turn) and there you have it. Playing with

the controls like an excited child means the gyro sways back to the airstrip like an intoxicated pedestrian, but the pilot has it all under control and takes over for an effortless landing. After tenderly wiping down the gyro like a newborn infant and ‘dressing it in its PJs’, Tresfon posts on Facebook: ‘Awesome flight around the peninsula on Saturday morning. Blouberg to Scarborough, then over Red Hill to Simonstown, followed the False Bay coastline all the way to Strand before finally returning home via Durbanville. Massive swells along the Atlantic Seaboard, Dungeons and Sunset firing, also huge at Outer Kom. Crayfish Factory with giant sets rolling – with David Lehr and Kathy Malherbe.’ One short baptism of flight and you will be a devotee – in fact, a full-blown gyrophiliac. For more information, call Magni Gyro South Africa on 011 753 2261, email info@magnigyro.co.za or visit magnigyro.co.za. If you’re interested in learning to fly, call Jeff Ayliffe on 082 798 1100.

The Magni M16 offers unrivalled views from its relatively simple cockpit. The instrument panel is straightforward, featuring only those instruments required for VFR (Visual Flight Rules) flight. Most important are the airspeed indicator, altimeter and, of course, the enginemanagement gauges such as oil temperature, engine RPM and so forth. (Opposite) The coastline of the West Coast between Grotto Bay and Yzerfontein is an aviator’s paradise, with 22km of deserted beach to explore

ISSUE 22 P R I V A T E E D I T I O N 5 9


Eye, Robot Is it a bird? Is it a plane? Might it be a military drone? One thing the aerial robot is not, is a toy. Words ANDRÉ WIESNER

IT FILLS THE BACK OF A BAKKIE and looks at first like something you might net off the continental shelf or in Joburg’s ailing water supply – part crustacean, part dragonfly, and faintly extraterrestrial. Then its outline comes into relief, along with its core parts and intricate tweaks and add-ons: six outstretched arms, each with a propeller; landing skids, braided wires, the stalk of a GPS antenna, a Velcro’ed battery pack, black steel tubing and strips of orange tape; and, ensconced under a helmet on the central plate, a ‘main brain’ chipset packed to the pan with Chinese radio-control mojo. Berthed on grassland, its lights start to pulse, and as the multi-rotors flicker into a blur, dust swells upwards in the buzz-saw noise. The hexacopter, guided from the ground by Gary McDonogh and his associate Neville Pienaar, hovers to eye level, favouring us with a view of its undercarriage and raison d’être, the object whose weight it is designed to lift – the silver ingot of a tiltable camera, the nozzle of its lens erect. Before you can say ‘crikey Moses’, the machine is effortlessly aloft. With a flying time of about 20 minutes, a speed of 80km/h and range of five clicks, it could easily elude the naked eye and emptied wallet. Well, who cares? Have a cigarette. If it has trouble, or if the radio signal fails or the operator is a klutz, the thing can autopilot its own way home. McDonogh would illustrate this point dramatically on the hexacopter’s later return. He would throttle off on the

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remote control and lob it onto the grass. Look, no hands. Churning up grit, caught in the riptides of a stiff breeze, the aircraft would self-adjust its balance and remain imperturbably vertical, easing down bit by bit until its hindquarters nestle on dry land. But for now it’s still on the hoof and out of sight, although there’s been no break in visual contact. We might not be able to see it, but – vividly, exhilaratingly – we see what it is seeing. The camera records video footage, takes Google-beating, high-resolution photographs and, thanks to a downlink working on a licence-free frequency, also transmits that imagery in real time to a tripod-mounted screen back at base, transforming the latter into a virtual cockpit. Far below this soaring eye, houses, tree tops and the suburban geometry glide past as though in a dream. The marvel is called first-person-view flying, or FPV for short. What strange bird, then, is this hexacopter? Like its four-bladed sibling, the quadcopter, not to mention their faster and endurance-built fixed-wing cousins, the hexacopter has long been a rage in the US, but McDonogh believes it made its debut in South African stores and flying circles as recently as 2010. Assisted by Pienaar on the technical front, McDonogh is a hobby-shop owner as well as championship-level hobbyist – model boats, model off-road cars, the lot – and is among the entrepreneurs looking to develop a market for a new generation of radiocontrolled aircraft.


TREND (Opposite) They go by various names – aerial robots, aerial robotic media, unmanned aerial vehicles – but they’re better known as drones

Key to the undertaking is getting a fix on what these craft are. Hexacopters are drones you can own, right? McDonogh considers for a moment, finding the term ‘somewhat emotive’. Then again, he frequently uses it himself. People know what you mean and, for all its potential stigma, it’s pretty cool. On the other hand, if ‘drone’ calls to mind war in Afghanistan, soft-opting for ‘model aeroplanes’ makes these unmanned aerial vehicles sound toy-like. ‘The big change in the market is that the military tech of 20 years ago is now consumer technology. The average person can walk into a shop and buy it off the shelf,’ he explains. Already there are signs of shake-up in Toytown, indicators of product adaptation and market shift. McDonogh’s store is a case in point, at once soothingly nostalgic and busily cutting-edge. At the far end is the workshop – for walk-in repairs but, particularly, for testing and hand-tooling the bespoke accessories fitted to McDonogh’s range of drones, chief among which is the FPV hexacopter, his ‘high-end, niche’ offering. Birthday shoppers and school-project call-ins aside, the typical customer is he whom folklore predicts and repeated observation proves. He’s a married man, McDonogh explains, ‘married to aviation. He’s got AIDS: Aviation Induced Divorce Syndrome, and he’s addicted… Men often go through a life crisis or may have troubles at home. The hobby store takes a man back to his childhood, to a time of less stress.’

If it has trouble, or if the radio signal fails or the operator is a klutz, the thing can autopilot its own way home. Yet, while the customers traipsing through the grille gate year after year might, in effect, just morph into the same guy all the time, the typical customer’s background and job interests do change over the decades. McDonogh explored these trends in his business-school thesis on the impact of technological advances on the hobby market. ‘For example, when model aircrafting was about getting a box of sticks and gluing them together, it appealed to people like architects and engineers,’ he explains. ‘With the swing to electronics, there was interest from the likes of programmers, software developers.’ Ditto with drones, he says. ‘For the many hobbyists who buy them, it’s literally a hobby. But we’re also seeing increased interest from nontraditional users, people who are in it to achieve a business outcome.’ In

the case of the hexacopter, this functional approach is almost necessitated by the price tag, as competitive as McDonogh declares it to be. ‘You can have lots of fun but when you’re spending upwards of R100K, the craft has a job to do. We don’t do loops and flips with this one. It’s a hovering platform, the eye in the sky.’ Current and projected uses of drones cover wide ground, from residential photography by homeowners and estate agents to promotional videos for casinos, golf courses and entertainment complexes. Indeed, film companies are starting to cut costs by using drones rather than helicopters for aerial footage. Then there are deployments for property valuations, high-rise inspections, game counts, checkups on farming crops, the monitoring of public works and property developments… The drone’s security applications are especially diverse, given its surveillance capabilities and ability to fly preset missions along the perimeters of farms, mines or luxury estates, as well as be dispatched to specific incidents ahead of security personnel. It’s also stealthy, meaning that, unlike a normal helicopter, it can creep up on game in a reserve without making animals charge off before you see the reds of their eyes – good for nature documentation and even better for anti-poaching efforts, because the infrared lens can detect hot bodies at night. Similarly, the drone can facilitate crowd-control during strikes and riots, gathering intel for here-and-now response and evidentiary material for post-mortems. Its mere hovering presence has deterrence-value. ‘The range of applications comes down to your imagination,’ McDonogh says, keenly aware how dark that imagination could run: having been consumerised, the technology could be re-militarised, black-ops style. But that’s another story, and for now the nascent community of early adopters – retailers, users, interested parties – is taking steps towards self-regulation to preempt any heavy-handed reaction by the government. ‘Let’s not forget this comes from wanting to have fun. What’s the attraction of having an unmanned vehicle? That it’s unmanned – but there’s a man behind it. Maybe it has a James Bond feeling. People might have illusions of spying at the neighbour’s swimming pool. Maybe they will, maybe they won’t. But the fact is that they feel they can do it.’ McDonogh laughs, tousle-haired, gravelvoiced. ‘It brings a certain amount of power back home.’

For more information, visit hobbycentre.co.za.

ISSUE 22 P R I V A T E E D I T I O N 6 1


2013 BMW EUROSTYLE TOUR

Fast-forward The 2013 BMW EuroStyle Tour races from Lisbon to London loaded with intriguing new inventions and nifty thinking. Words LES AUPIAIS

IF YOU’RE UP TO SPEED with your grasp of Ecclesiastes, the expression ‘there’s nothing new under the sun’ will resonate with you. And we’ve heard the old adage ‘don’t try to reinvent the wheel’ often enough. Sayings become clichés because, for the most part, they’re ring-of-truth sort of things. Unless you’re Duncan Fitzsimons or Puneet Mehta. In London on the 2013 BMW EuroStyle Tour, the group crowds into the small Vitamins Design and Invention Studio in Spitalfields to meet a team that lists Blackberry, Olympus and Samsung as clients. And you don’t land the Big Kahunas without serious inventiveness. Clara Gaggero is their product-design and fashion entrepreneur. Adrian Westaway is down in the team as Interaction Designer and Magician (there’s a business card that would break business ice). But it’s Fitzsimons’ 2013 Transport Design of the Year award for the Morph Folding Wheel that really does reinvent something that’s been around for more than 5 000 years. No matter how you look at it, even with its seats collapsible and its metalwork super-light, a wheelchair’s an unwieldy thing to manoeuvre and store, especially while travelling. Fitzsimons designed and created a folding wheel that packs easily into a bag that looks as if it holds a brace of hockey sticks. In flight, the bag takes its place in the usual storage area and, when needed at Point B, the wheels are popped back to full round shape in under a minute and

bolted firmly in place, giving disabled passengers instant mobility. Vitamins focuses on designing products that change everyday life and for this one, it scores an Oscar. Leonardo da Vinci would have collaborated with them in a nanosecond but what the 15th-century inventor would have made of a device that tracked your buying patterns, personal taste and mobility, who knows? Mehta is the man behind MyCityWay, and not only does he know what you did last summer, he will tell you what you’re likely to do the next one. Part soothsayer, part magician himself, he was one of three colleagues, all Wall Street banking technologists, who entered a competition launched by New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg to gather all the city’s data – from subway timetables to weather patterns – and create a mobile city guide. Fast-forward to 2010, and MyCityWay is the digital guidebook you download in more than 100 cities around the world. From traffic reports and where you can buy an iced latte in a heat wave, to theatre tickets and restaurant reservations: one tap of your mobile phone gives you 360-degree intelligence on the move. Mehta reveals that the phrase that has everyone excited is ‘situational awareness’ – one of the personalisation pillars of the app. Basically, you become the catalyst of your own mapped lifestyle and environment, with the app morphing to meet individual tastes and needs. In the antithesis of the 50 First Dates

When needed at Point B, the wheels are popped back to full round shape in under a minute and bolted firmly in place, giving disabled passengers instant mobility. Vitamins Design and Invention Studio focuses on designing products that change everyday life, and for this one it scores an Oscar.

(Opposite) The interior revamp of this landmark hotel, overlooking King’s Cross St Pancras station in London, is testimony to Jeremy Robson’s ability to spot and leverage opportunity

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syndrome, your phone actually does ‘remember’ every detail of your life. Your mobile device then becomes the nearest thing to a longtime partner in terms of how well it knows you – but without the emotional arguments over whether to ask for directions or not. Fast-forward and you have linked apps for the screen at the back of your airplane seat or, if you drive a BMW, your iDrive will extend that intelligent personalisation to the road. High tech, low tech, smart tech… The team at Therefore Product Design Consultants works in any field from cookware to luggage. Until Mehta figures out how to get your app to create you an easy wardrobe in every city you visit, you’re pretty much stuck with travelling with up to 20kg in gear. Martin Riddiford and Jim Fullalove fill the gaps. Take something as simple as the suitcase and all its failings: they’re mostly black in defence of abuse in transit, they have zips that part, they’re generally ugly and vulnerable. Stack up the challenges of airplane travel – theft in transit (no, not everyone wants to condomise their carryalls), restrictions in weight and the bashing your case gets from gungho baggage handlers – and you are plumb in the middle of Therefore territory by way of a design challenge. Samsonite is one of their clients, and just by toughening up the case structure and surfaces using polypropylene, redesigning the locks and figuring out how to reduce weight by

up to 50 percent, they’ve brought us all a long way from the air rage of losing valuables, paying excess costs and damage. On the domestic front, they are no less inventive, with their ROK manual espresso-making gadget that gives you the best shot of coffee ‘unplugged’ that you’re likely to taste. They’ve also designed the safe and smart Bednest – a light but sturdy clip-tothe-bed bassinet for keeping a newborn baby close but out of a parental bed. But arguably their most socially responsible invention is the GravityLight. A 10kg weight attached to a pulley is manually released to power an LED light. The design basically harvests gravity and gives 30 minutes of quality illumination, with the LEDs lasting up to 50 000 hours. The team raised the capital the same way Barack Obama raised funds for his presidential campaign: seed capital by crowdsourcing via social media. It helped the cause when Bill Gates tweeted a thumbs-up for GravityLight – the next minute, 24 million people were following its progress. The goal is to make the light as cheaply as possible (for under $10) and this is where Chinese manufacturing could be extremely useful, says the team. Riddiford cites their inspiration as Africa, where millions of school children are forced to study by candlelight or by paraffin lamps – both potentially hazardous in makeshift wood and tin shacks.

ISSUE 22 P R I V A T E E D I T I O N 6 3


2013 BMW EUROSTYLE TOUR

CHECK IN, CHECK IT OUT Jeremy Robson looks like Phil Collins’ younger, better-looking brother. Okay, maybe a cousin. Something with the eyes and mouth, perhaps? He’s not a tall man but has an uncanny ability of listening to what you say and remembering it. A conversation races about and then, minutes later, he gives a little smile, leans forward and comments on what you said three cycles of subject matter before. Yes, he’s smart and spots opportunity where others may see massive obstacles, but his people skills are magnificent and must have contributed to his success as a real-estate investor over the past 12 years. More than ₤6 billion in assets are fair evidence. Sales and leasebacks are his game, but you can’t help thinking the deal goes down beyond the balance sheets and boardroom and into the bar. He is a fabulous host and you get the feeling that if he were to dabble in politics, he’d be landslide material. The Eurostyle Tour group stays at one of his recent property projects, the grandly refurbished and glamorous Great Northern Hotel opposite London’s King’s Cross St Pancras station, to experience the hotel’s new interior architecture and dining. The hotel’s been an institution for more than 150 years but, to look sharp for 21st-century travellers, was given an internal redesign to offer 91 small but perfectly formed rooms ideal for travellers in transit. He cleverly shipped in top chef Mark Sargeant, who survived a 13-year stint with Gordon Ramsay, to head up the hotel’s Plum + Spilt Milk restaurant and bar. Chef of the Year in 2006 and responsible for landing a Michelin star for Ramsay at Claridge’s, Sargeant has designed a menu of simple, tasty dishes (think steak and chips with style and flair) with food from suppliers right near the hotel. The restaurant stays open from dawn to midnight. No-one’s going to rush your dinner here and there’s always another train.

A SOUTH AFRICAN SMELLING OF ROSES… One of the group’s final impressions of London was a seduction of senses by South African Christopher Jenner. The ex-Capetonian studied design in SA and then settled in London. By combining heritage, product and personality he communicates brand stories on multiple levels. Trend forecasters keep a sharp eye on his work

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because he creates global interest in the brands he influences. Synergy is everything and when we enter Penhaligon’s on Regent Street in London, we understand just how he does it. Without taking anything away from the 140-year-old emporium of British perfumery, he uses modern design details and colour to seduce you by the eye and then, as each bottle of fragrance is opened, you catch a hint of clove, a thread of vanilla, the duskiness of rose… The original owner, William Penhaligon, left an archive of scents in 1872, and today master perfumers launch brave new fragrances using rare ingredients, some of which cost twice the price of gold. Look around and you’ll notice that the distinctive bottle shape is replicated in almost every element of the interior design in glass. It’s this subtle brand-wash that Jenner’s famous for. A word of advice: channel the spirit of our property magnate Robson and focus before you visit the emporium, because 35 distinctive fragrances can derail you. Now here’s where Mehta’s phone app could play a role: if your phone could just recall and prompt your pleasure at smelling lavender in Tuscany, or vanilla-pod ice cream on Camps Bay beach, or the Arctic Ocean, he’d be on the money. To find out more about the designers featured in the 2013 BMW Eurostyle Tour, visit vitaminsdesign.com, mycityway. com, therefore.co.uk, varasverdes.com, gnhlondon.com and penhaligons.com.

When life simply isn’t worth living without caffeine, ROK gives you coffee ‘unplugged’ with this stylish manual espressomaking gadget

PHOTOGRAPHY: SUPPLIED

While Therefore casts its eyes to the problems faced by Africa, Varas Verdes Design & Crafts used a dash of simplicity and gave it a sustainable spin. The team ‘reinvents ideas’, they say, and one collection – Mercado – turns rough pine pallets into colourful stools. Simple, bright and delightfully usable, they are inspired by the fruit and vegetables at a market. In the face of zero funding, the young design team of architects, number crunchers and mediasavvy craftsmen have day jobs and do this project because they care and because it’s good for Portugal. If the recession in Europe has done nothing, it has spawned a generation of young people who are compelled to design. We sit, we eat, we socialise, we love colour, we admire craftsmanship, we support hard work and we support sustainability. A small, bright stool with a modest price tag becomes a defiant symbol of toughing out the dark times.


Words JAZZ KUSCHKE Photography CRAIG KOLESKY/NIKON/LEXAR


PHOTOGRAPHIC ESSAY

The Hardy Boys Carve – verb; to make a turn by tilting something on its edge and using your weight to push it into an arc. Riding mountain bikes is all about this, and about turning other things too.


PHOTOGRAPHIC ESSAY

There are those races you enter to ride a good time or to push for a placing. Then there are those where motivations for lining up at the start line are altogether different – the privilege of riding roads and trails you may not usually have access to is a common theme. (Previous) Andrew Cattell was one of the finishers in the Absa Cape Epic 2012

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CIRCULAR PARTS MAKE UP the gearing on a bicycle – the cluster of cogs at the back and the chain rings at the front. The small jockey wheels in the derailleur, which guides the chain. A revolving motion is employed to power this system, from legs through feet, pedal and cranks. Ultimately making the round wheels roll. It’s the world’s most efficient machine. ‘The noblest invention of mankind’, ArmenianAmerican author William Saroyan called it. In the mid-1970s a bunch of top road racers from California took their noble machines to the mountain trails of Marin County. They tinkered with vintage parts, modified brakes and gearing systems, and experimented with fat tyres. Eventually they started building hardier off-road frames. Guys like Charlie Kelly, Gary Fisher and Joe Breeze may not have been the first to ride bikes off road, but unquestionably they pioneered the sport of mountain biking.


PHOTOGRAPHIC ESSAY

The paddle is an extension of the SUPer’s body and comes in a variety of shapes, sizes and materials. [Right] At nearly 5,5m, Bertish’s long-distance paddleboard is much longer and narrower than his wave-riding model. It also has a lowered bow and soft, forgiving rails for long glides and speed on the open ocean

Come rain or shine – mud, sweat and gears are a classic recipe for a fun day out. Until you visit your bike mechanic on Monday

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POST-PRODUCTION: JEAN-PIERRE GOUWS AT BLINK

PHOTOGRAPHIC ESSAY

HOW TO They’re doing it everywhere from Emmarentia Dam and Midmar to Tietiesbaai on the West Coast. A secondhand board costs about R5 000 and a lesson is recommended. To find out more, contact Ocean Riders on 082 454 0398, go to oceanriders.co.za or email Bird sense – pilots have a variometer that indicates when they’re climbing, but they’re always in tune with their surroundings, watching trees, the greg@truebluetravel.co.za sea and the birds for clues of wind shifts and weather changes With thanks to Nikon and Lexar ISSUE 18 P R I V A T E E D I T I O N 7 5


TREND PHOTOGRAPHIC ESSAY

(Above) It’s a team game – mountain biking may seem like a solo endeavour, but in races like the Absa Cape Epic, where riders race in teams of two, you’re only as strong as your partner. (Opposite) The mud-pack treatment is complimentary

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OH, THE PLACES WE WILL GO The pistoning of legs required to pedal a bike is not a difficult set of skills to acquire, rather it’s the balance and bike-handling that’s complex and the reason why that virgin ride without training wheels is such a monument. Remember it? The feeling of freedom and spirit of play born in those first wobbly few laps round the garden are alive even in the most tread-worn mountain biker. When Fisher swoops his leg over the full-carbon, R100 000-plus, 29-inch-wheeled machine he helped engineer, he grins as he did on those initial sketchy runs down ‘repack’ hill near Fairfax in Marin. Much like surfers, mountain bikers can be classed into subgroups that may seem pretty exclusive and intimidating to the uninitiated. You have the gravity-addicted downhill crowd (if you don’t know the name Greg Minnaar, google it now), the cross-country racing snakes who account for every gram of weight (including the bolts on their shoes), and the endurance fiends who live for marathon-distance events. And the punk-rock enduro-purists and the free-riders. There are those who shave their legs religiously and are devoted to lycra, and others who refuse to ride in anything but board shorts. It goes on. Truth is, at heart they’re all trail riders out turning cranks for the same reason. It’s more of an enchantment than a passion. Mountain bikers are haunted by mountains – purpose-carved singletracks, logging trails, maintenance roads to obscure radio masts.


PHOTOGRAPHIC ESSAY

Forgotten passes. The switchbacked corners asking to be carved turn us on. The attraction, of course, routes beyond the physical. It’s the places where a mountain bike will take one emotionally and physiologically that – in our modern, traffic-jam-crammed lives – are perhaps more interesting and important. Training programmes with their interval workouts, detailed heart-rate zones and wattages outputs, prescribe pain, but nobody can force you to push yourself that far. Unless you’re a pro and your meal ticket relies on consistent podium performances, taking yourself to a place of suffering where your legs feel as though one more push of the crank will be the absolute last and your lungs want to explode, is all of your own doing. If you’re a newbie or a bit out of shape, this can be five minutes into a ride. Ten cranks into the first climb… Reads like torture if you’ve never been there. Be consoled by the adage that ‘what goes up, must come down’. So you turn the cranks one more time because you know somewhere up the climb you’re going to turn a corner and be greeted with a vista reserved for your kind. And then you turn the crank again because you know on the way down there will be bermed corners to carve. And then you turn the cranks again because this next time up the same climb you’ll be stronger for it.

ISSUE 22 P R I V A T E E D I T I O N 7 3


MOTORING

Star Attraction Flying by, the 2014 Range Rover Sport will give bystanders whiplash but deliver all the oomph demanded of a 4x4 on a serious incline. STRANGE THINGS HAVE BEEN HAPPENING to me recently. Television adverts seem more meaningful, Talk Radio 702 is more interesting than the 5FM Top 40 countdown, and the usual double cheese burger has been replaced with a quinoa chicken salad. Maturity has crept up on me. And it’s scary, because maturity delivers sobering perspectives, such as looking at achieving that 1982 Ferrari 308 GTB Quattrovalvole or the holiday house in Llandudno in a different light. With the banking app in motion, my bank balance reminds me why I hadn’t arrived yet. Also, at the age of 36, perhaps I was setting the bar a bit high. Plausible excuses in hand, I happily log off the app and start scrolling through the pictures I took at the recent Johannesburg International Motor Show. Somewhere in between the bad coffee and pinstriped brand ambassadors we spotted a few remarkable beauties (I’m referring to the cars here, not the show girls). The undisputed magnet was the 2014 Range Rover Sport. The model on show, already covered in too many handprints to count, drew many an ardent follower staring happily, left hand in pocket, right hand holding the cellphone camera aloft to capture the most attractive luxury high-performance SUV on the market. The predecessor to this model had set a high standard in sheer presence, and I can say with absolute certainty that this fresh new face has managed to make advances on that mean, handsome, muscular stance. In a dynamic design with obvious cues taken from the Range Rover Evoque, the fast-raked windscreen and floating roof are styling triumphs. The panoramic sunroof is also impressive. This is the product of a strategy that set out to turn heads. I’m reminded of why these cars easily find loving homes with the Bryanston soccer moms and Clifton CEOs alike.

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They’re tough and beautiful at the same time – an accelerator pedal that happily receives her Jimmy Choo pumps and his Hugo Boss brogues. In fairness, the other competitors in this segment haven’t done poorly in the space either, but let’s not forget that this vehicle, born of Land Rover heritage, is capable of scaling far more than a pavement. New features include the nifty Surround Camera System on a touch screen to give you a complete 360-degree view via five digital cameras, a smaller steering wheel, lower seated position and increased leg and shoulder room presented on stitching detail that is typical Range Rover plush. It adds to an ambiance of cocooned luxury. Safety features include adaptive cruise control with queue assist, reverse traffic detection, and wade assist for those moments when your luxury high performance SUV shows off its 546mm wading depth. Ground clearance has been increased by 51mm to 278mm, and a 178mm longer wheelbase will compliment your 22inch wheels. But it’s probably that 375kW V8 Supercharged power plant that draws me most. The eyelid-flapping 625Nms are cleverly harnessed via the Torque Vectoring System to significantly enhance the on-road experience with responsive handling and cornering. The extensive use of aluminium helps trim 420kg of body weight, allows acceleration from 0-100km/h in 5,4 seconds and delivers a limited top speed of 250km/h. If you prefer the economy of diesel, consider the frugal yet engaging 3-litre Diesel with a combined consumption of 7,9 litres/100km. No, it’s not as quick as its Mercedes-Benz, Porsche or BMW equivalents, but that doesn’t matter. This car will boldly go where none of the others would dare get their mud flaps soiled.


Brains, Brawn and Beauty The Mercedes-Benz M-Class would handle a December break to the Kruger or to Maputo – and act as a guide. MY WIFE CONVINCED ME to start mountain biking some time back. It took some nagging, but I conceded eventually, as one does. Mostly, I conceded because it was the opportunity to ‘fill another void’ that I didn’t have, with another toy that I didn’t want. So we rushed off to the bike shops, learnt some cool new terms like ‘carbon frames’ and ‘rear derailleurs’, and settled on the bike that caught my eye first in the shop window. It had a pearlescent white paint job, gold-and-black decals and the signature of a guy named Hans Rey. But, most of all, it was pretty. Thirteen races, four crashes and one short-tempered puff adder later, I had to admit that ‘pretty’ doesn’t win the race. The difference between a good ride and a great ride lies in the quality of your equipment. Thankfully, my pretty bike is also well equipped – but consider how many things we buy based purely on their looks. It’s always a surprise when there’s substantial depth to boot. With the luxury SUV market being such a tightly contested space, it’s difficult to single out the best of the lot. One of the prettier options available right now is the latest Mercedes-Benz M-Class. I’ve not always thought of the previous versions this way, but my experience of the latest M-Class has given me fresh perspective. I found myself in a cabin that felt solid and well put together. Leather stitching on the dashboard and door panels added to a sense of quality, and the standard electric seats in front were comfortable. This was the kind of space where I’d be happy to

spend a few hours on a long dusty road to nowhere. The foot-operated parking brake has been replaced by a toggle switch to the right of the steering wheel. Rear legroom was more than adequate for two full-grown adults. I found the Attention Assist technology, which is standard equipment, particularly interesting. It’s essentially a group of sensors that constantly monitor driver behaviour and warns you both visually and audibly when it detects a lack of attention or drowsiness. Yup, the day has arrived when your car will tell you when you need a cup of coffee. The Bi-Xenon headlights with auto high beams are now standard, as is the 4MATIC all-wheel-drive system which, when coupled with the optional Airmatic suspension pack in Sport Mode, will deliver an addictive road-holding experience. That suspension package also allows for the ride height to be raised when attempting less favourable road conditions and lowered automatically over long distances to reduce wind resistance and, therefore, fuel consumption. The ML is available in two diesel derivatives: the ML 250 BlueTEC and the ML 350 BlueTEC, the latter producing 190kW of power. Petrol versions available are the ML 350 BlueEFFICIENCY, the ML 500 BlueEFFICIENCY and the high-performance ML63 AMG with its awesome 386kW 5.5-litre V8 engine, which produces 700Nm of grin-inducing torque.

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MOTORING

Q – and A The Audi Q7 may just be the answer to an all-round SUV. well-timed stop. As I take the Q7 carefully onto the dirt road, it becomes evident that the 21-inch wheels on the S-line derivative look great but aren’t necessarily the best choice for trips off the tar. I thoroughly appreciate the reverse camera, and the mammoth panoramic sunroof contributes to an impressive passenger experience. Controls are intuitively laid out, and I felt a palpable sense of sporting purpose with this car despite the fact that the fuel gauge moved very little under less-than-frugal driving conditions. The Q7 is a powerful, comfortable and engaging proposition that should certainly feature as an option the next time you consider a luxury performance SUV.

TEXT: ZEYD SULAIMAN. PHOTOGRAPHY: SUPPLIED

A SLEEK AND IMPOSING ROAD PRESENCE that demands attention: that’s what you discover when you road-test the tarmac Goliath that is the Audi Q7. My sunset drive along the Cape’s West Coast gave the 3.0 TDI a chance to flex its muscle. Pushing the pedal to the floor opens the torque taps enough to shift me further into the driver seat. Potholes along the beautiful M14 route make for an impromptu slalom and, with every quick flick of the sporty steering wheel, I can’t detect any body roll worth mentioning. I approach the location of an unplanned photoshoot faster than I’d like, but the massive disc brakes matted to an excellent suspension setup make for dynamic handling that brings me to a

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Wild and Wonderful The Quirimbas Archipelago in northern Mozambique fits the bill of tropical wonderland without the crowds. Words and photography JUSTIN FOX

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Silversmiths produce lovely jewellery in the courtyard of Ibo Island’s São João Baptista fort. (Opposite) Kivuri is a settlement of itinerant fishermen that forms the largest village on Vamizi Island

AFTER YEARS OF BLOODY CIVIL WAR, Mozambique began opening up to tourism in the ’90s. South Africans have been returning in steadily growing numbers ever since, and the southern coast is now just as popular as it was before independence in 1975. Old haunts such as Ponta d’Ouro, Inhambane and Bazaruto offer a decent range of accommodation from budget backpacker to luxury. Some areas attract large contingents of South Africans bent on partying, particularly in season. With quad bikes and Jet Skis in tow, they often wreck the peace and quiet of paradise. If you want to beat the crowds and find the hidden gems, you have to go north. The Quirimbas Archipelago, a chain of 27 islands stretching from the town of Pemba to the border with Tanzania, is largely unspoilt and neatly fulfils the tropical-island fantasy. Apart from three fine resorts run by the Rani group in Pemba and on Matemo and Medjumbe islands, there are three lodges that stand out among the islands. I hopped on a single-engine charter flight from Pemba and winged my way to Azura at Quilálea, Ibo Island Lodge and Vamizi Island.

The Cessna flew north over a string of isles and landed on Quirimba Island’s grass runway, from where I took a ski boat across the channel to Quilálea. This tiny atoll boasts one of the most luxurious lodges in Mozambique, bought by billionaire Tokyo Sexwale for a reported $70 million. It’s been renovated extensively and is managed and run by boutique-hotel chain Azura. From the beach, I was led to a luxurious villa made from coral-stone and makuti thatch. There were diaphanous mosquito nets, white drapes, indoor and outdoor showers, private decks and sun loungers. Quilálea offers good kayaking around the atolls, sailing on a traditional dhow and excellent deep-sea fishing – there’s even a spa for lazy afternoons of pampering. But I found the scuba diving and snorkelling the star attractions here. My first dive set the tone. Twenty metres down we reached a coral wall and descended through schools of psychedelic fish. There were barracudas, turtles, groupers, red snappers, lionfish and tiny sea horses. The waters around the island have been declared a sanctuary, so Quilálea’s marine bounty is protected,

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PHOTOGRAPHY: GREAT STOCK!/CORBIS; SUPPLIED


TRAVEL

(Opposite, clockwise from top left) Vamizi Lodge features Swahili-style furniture and coral chandeliers; most provisions, including water, are imported by dhow; sandy paths through the casuarinas lead to the lodge; women shop among the dilapidated colonial houses of Ibo Island fortunately. No fishing is allowed within the exclusion zone, which has become a nursery for fish and turtles. Local fishermen have found that their catches outside the restricted area have increased exponentially, so it’s a winwin situation… and a paradise for underwater enthusiasts. A 4x4 was waiting for me when the Cessna pulled up beside the one-room, open-sided international terminal on Ibo Island. Within a few minutes, I was delivered to Ibo Island Lodge, which comprises a group of colonial villas at the north end of town. It’s the finest accommodation on the island. There are large, private gardens with bamboo pathways, swimming pools surrounded by loungers and an aerial couch suspended from the branch of a tree. Ibo is an evocative former Portuguese outpost with a fascinating past. The town offers a window on the colonial era. Its history and architecture are a blend of influences from Africa, the Arab world and Portugal. There are three forts, an elegant cathedral and streets of colonnaded villas, many of which have fallen into ruin and are now entwined with strangler figs. Ibo Island Lodge is the brainchild of Capetonians Fiona and Kevin Record. The interiors are evocative of the colonial period, with mahogany and teak antiques, old crank gramophones and ball-and-claw sofas. From its rooftop restaurant you can watch the coming and going of dhows, the slow tropical drift of an Ibo day. My time on the island followed the rhythms of lodge and town. There were dhow sailing, snorkelling and heritage walks. One morning I joined a group of guests on a trip to the sandbank in Ibo Channel aboard a large dhow for a day of picnicking and fun in the sun. Indeed, for more adventurous guests, the lodge offers dhow sailing and kayaking safaris of up to seven days among the islands. Next, I flew to Vamizi in the far north of the archipelago. This banana-shaped island, the biggest in the Quirimbas, boasts a superb lodge. I was collected from the airstrip and driven to the eastern end of the island through lush, forested vegetation. Butterflies filled the air like confetti, and samango monkeys watched our progress from the branches. Vamizi Lodge has the concession for half the island, which is a reserve, and its villas are tucked away among the casuarinas on a lovely stretch of beach. The lodge comprises a lounge and bar in one structure, an open-

sided dining room in another and a sundowner gazebo on the beach. There are dark timber fittings, muted fabrics and tall makuti roofs. The interiors feature Swahili-style furniture and African carvings, coral chandeliers and wooden fans. Guest villas, set more than 50m apart, offer the best of Robinson Crusoe chic. They offer large, airy spaces with enormous mosquito nets, marble showers large enough to fit an extended family, and teak decks with cane sofas and chaise longues surrounded by billowing muslins. The snorkelling and scuba diving is world class and Neptune’s Arm reef is a Holy Grail for experienced divers. For sailing enthusiasts, the lodge provides dinghies, Hobie Cats, dhows and windsurfers. Game fishermen are spoilt with a wealth of pelagics right on their doorstep, from giant trevally and tuna to sailfish and marlin, all hooked on a catch-and-release basis. There’s a derelict Portuguese lighthouse – the perfect setting for a decadent seafood picnic – and a pristine mangrove swamp for kayaking. My time on Vamizi was a heady mix of swimming with dolphins, diving among Napoleon wrasses and grey reef sharks, and watching green turtles laying their eggs in the soft light of dawn. From Vamizi, I made sorties by boat to nearby islands. Development was in the air and many islands had lodges that were either under construction or about to open. Cruising among these postcard-perfect atolls, I thought about the challenges facing this enchanted archipelago. War, poverty and remoteness had kept it embalmed. But the modern world had come snooping and it seemed that rapid development was in store. So far, most of the resorts and lodges have been largely ecofriendly and sensitive to the communities. But that could change. The recent discovery of natural-gas fields just off the archipelago and the attendant increase in traffic and economic activity could spell trouble. Preserving the natural environment will be critical. The creation of reserves and sanctuaries – such as those at Quilálea, Medjumbe and Vamizi – is a step in the right direction. The best future for the archipelago would be a combination of conservation and controlled tourism. But for now, the islands are still largely unspoilt, off the tourist track and utterly beguiling. Don’t wait, go now.

WAYS AND MEANS Airlink (flyairlink.com) and LAM (lam.co.mz) have regular flights to Pemba from OR Tambo in Jo’burg. From Pemba, most guests take charter flights to the islands. Bookings can be arranged through Rani Resorts, Quilálea or Vamizi. Inter-island transfers by boat are also possible: enquire at your lodge. Overlanders from SA usually drive to mainland villages such as Tandanhangue and hitch a ride to the Quirimbas by dhow. For the most part, a Quirimbas holiday is expensive: expect to pay top dollar. For accommodation, book directly with the lodges (quilalea.co.za, iboisland.com and vamizi.com) – or get in touch with Kaskazini, a reliable tour operator based in Pemba (kaskazini.com).

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Crayfish Tales

Words TREVOR CRIGHTON Photography SUPPLIED

Moz still delivers the best taste of the tropics. IF THERE WERE A TERTIARY DEGREE in the preparation of African lobster, chef Abujade would have a scroll in his kitchen proclaiming him ‘Master of Metanephrops Mozambicus’. Abujade’s delight in delivering multiple manifestations of perfectly grilled lobster platters defines him as part student, part artist. Seemingly unconvinced that a meal could be defined as ‘square’ without the presence of mounds of delicate white crustacean flesh dripping in butter and lemon juice, he would quite possibly serve you lobster on toast for breakfast, without too much prompting. Guests of Medjumbe Private Island, off the coast of northern Mozambique, visit for solitude, luxury and the chance to do absolutely nothing all day long. All the island clichés are covered, ticking water, sand and scenery boxes in the ‘warm’, ‘white’ and ‘dazzling’ range. What sets the experience apart is the sense of being marooned on a deserted island, coupled with the certainty of a silver-service supper and the proximity of your personal plunge pool. Less than 1km long and a third of that in width, this sandy teardrop of barefoot luxury is four hours’ travel from Jo’burg but an eternity from eGoli. A short charter flight from Pemba showcases unspeakably beautiful aerial views of the Quirimbas Archipelago. Medjumbe, though, stands alone as a haven for romance or contemplation. No children under 12 are allowed, unless guests book all 12 chalets for the duration of their stay, which places it in a different echelon from ‘Kidz Clubz’ Mauritian resorts. Optional private beach dinners offer the ultimate islanddining experience. Solar-powered jar lamps dotted around a table set on the beach in front of your room gently poke pinpricks in the impenetrable darkness you could only find

on an island miles from anywhere. The option to pretend you’re Robinson Crusoe while sipping champagne over yet another exquisite lobster meal is the core element of the Medjumbe experience. The lights of fishing boats twinkle far away on the horizon, as waves whisper up the beach towards your table. The silence is eerie, but unprecedented views of the Milky Way quickly dispel any disquiet. The miniscule island begs daytime exploration, with circumnavigation easily achievable in under an hour. To the west, waves clash over the thin tail of the landmass, and an abandoned lighthouse, built in 1934, dominates the headland to the east. Hundreds of tiny crabs scuttle frenetically across the beach, reminding you that a diet of crayfish and Caipirinhas – delivered rapidly and regularly by barman Adamo in tumblers the size of beach buckets – will demand a little physical activity at some point. Lounging in your chalet’s private Jacuzzi just seems so much more appropriate than shattering the silence with Jet Ski antics, though. The problem with holidaying in paradise is the crushing weight of the reality of your imminent return to the real world. Once you’ve arrived, buried your toes in the sand outside your air-conditioned suite and sipped your first cocktail, there’s always the nagging feeling that it’ll all be over again in a few days and you’ll be heading back to a life unfairly devoid of azure seas and three-course breakfasts. The twice-daily arrival of the charter plane on the island’s driveway-sized runway is a gentle reminder that time does indeed pass in paradise – a connection to the real world, should you be able to extract yourself from your hammock. You’ll have to head home some time…

Visit medjumbe.com for more information. HOW TO GET THERE Airlink offers direct flights to Pemba from Johannesburg on Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday, whereas LAM offers an excellent alternative via Maputo. Solenta Aviation transports passengers around the archipelago from Pemba.

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Blue skies and azure seas cocoon Medjumbe visitors in true ‘barefoot luxury’


TRAVEL

Pairing Up in Paarl If you fancy a weekend away for a superb wine-and-food pairing, set your GPS coordinates for the Grande Roche Hotel.

wine hunting, should be in your collection. Gorgosilich is the maestro and his culinary dexterity is behind one of the most delicious menus in the Western Cape. But he’s also not above taking something as traditional as crêpes suzette (ah, remember the ’70s!) and, following the fire and flamboyance of preparing them at your table, adding a side order of home-made vanilla ice cream to give it a contemporary twist. Sip a Thelema Rhine Riesling Late Harvest 2009 with this dish and you begin to appreciate that a dessert wine is not simply a nice add-on. It is the taste that lingers… How we got this clever with the wine selection had absolutely nothing to do with our sudden brilliance. We surrendered our choice to awardwinning sommelier Kayetan Meissner, who has worked on cruise ships around the world and for top hotels from Dubai to Johannesburg. He’s quietly delighted to be given his head, and if you can resist ordering your ‘same old’ favourites and are open to new tastes he is able to enhance your Grande Roche dining experience greatly. An hour out of Cape Town, the effortless charm of staff who really intend for you to enjoy your stay together with a dinner menu that exceeds expectations should make a weekend at Grande Roche feel like a little escape to a French country villa… but without the agony of a randeuro exchange. To book, call 021 863 5100 or email anja@granderoche.co.za.

For master sommelier Kayetan Meissner, winning the 2013 Bollinger Exceptional Wine Service Award for Bosman’s Restaurant at the Grande Roche Hotel means just as much to the hotel as it does to him. Rated among the top 10 best eateries in South Africa and the top 100 in the world, Bosman’s Restaurant has excelled in the three years since the inception of the competition

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PHOTOGRAPHY: SUPPLIED

THERE IS WONDERFUL TRICKERY to the Grande Roche Hotel’s location. One moment you are on Paarl’s main street and the next you seem to have jumped to deep winelands country where hotel verandas open onto a long tapestry of green vines. You are secluded and cosseted here, and a weekend away seems to slow down and stretch languidly. But the real attractions of this boutique hotel are the sommelier, the food at Bosman’s Restaurant and the effortless charm of the staff. It comes naturally. This is one thing that hotel school can’t teach – and whether the staff are hired for their ability to connect with guests, or whether GM Anja Bosken and marketing manager Francois Liebenberg coax and train their team in this direction, doesn’t matter. The result is that it’s the real meaning of Five Star. Food lures your eyes first, of course. Executive chef Roland Gorgosilich makes it an unashamed seduction with dishes such as red beetroot consommé, goat’s-cheese-crusted Chalmar beef fillet, baby beets and pumpernickel. Pair this with an AA Badenhorst Family Secateurs Rosé 2013 and you have a meal that’s both voluptuous on the eye, and yet delicate on the palate. For unashamed decadence, try the slow-braised pork belly and pork loin with white-onion puree, glazed cos lettuce and pommes fondantes teamed with Orange Mountain Viognier 2010. Or honey-glazed duck breast with a duo of red cabbage, pancetta croquette, and braised Boskoop apple and jus. Its wine taste mate was a Howard Booysen Pegasus Cinsault 2012, which, if you are

Words LES AUPIAIS


HYDE PARK CORNER FASHION WEEKEND

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PROJECT RUNWAY Hyde Park Corner fashionistas celebrated the glamour and style associated with some of the most famous and successful brands in the world at the annual Fashion Weekend. The shopping centre has become a mark magnet for the cosmopolitan and brand-savvy traveller. 1) Pearl Mphuthi and Lunga Tshabalala 2) Guests were struck by the drama of the new range by Marc Jacobs and the flamboyance of Spero Villiotti Couture, among others. 3) Jasmin Wasame 4) Matthew Mensah and James Aggry-Orleans 5) Sarah Langa and Jerri Mokgofe

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BROUGHT TO YOU IN CONJUNCTION WITH HYDE PARK CORNER


A BUNNAHABHAIN SOCIAL EVENT

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ON THE NOSE Lew and Sandy Geffen of Lew Geffen Sotheby’s International Realty hosted a whisky tasting at The Cape Grace, which brought their top clients and select agents together with one of the world’s best whisky brands. Bunnahabhain Islay single malt Scotch whisky was the star of the evening, upstaged only by Pierre Meintjes, who took guests through a tasting of the 12-, 18-, 25- and the sold-out 30-year-old. 1) Claude McKirby, Jonathan Steytler and Steve Thomas 2) Pierre Meintjes 3) Lew Geffen, Suzanne Stern, Brendan Miller and Paul Katzeff 4) Lew Geffen 5) Beverley Schafer and Solly Noor 6) Les Aupiais and Sandy Geffen

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PHOTOGRAPHY: SUPPLIED; AMARFOTO.COM

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BROUGHT TO YOU IN CONJUNCTION WITH BUNNAHABHAIN, LEW GEFFEN SOTHEBY’S INTERNATIONAL REALTY, DUNHILL AND THE CAPE GRACE

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ON A FINAL NOTE

Step Away from that iPhone Mounting evidence suggests our phones are addictive – and the habit’s harder to kick than you think. Words TABITHA LASLEY

THREE NEW WAYS TO SWITCH OFF 1. Emotional Freedom Technique EFT is best described as the love child of acupuncture and affirmation therapy. You tap yourself at acupressure points while breathing deeply and repeating affirmations. My EFT therapist Yvonne asks me to talk her through my iPhone habit. I tell her I paw at it compulsively; I look at it first thing in the morning and last thing at night; I feel mild panic when I’m separated from it – but even when it’s in my pocket, fighting the impulse to check it all the time makes me tense. She assures me this is very common, and orders me to tap myself at various meridians and repeat after her: ‘Even though I can’t stop checking my phone, I love and accept myself anyway. Even though

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I can’t stop checking my emails, I love and accept myself anyway.’ She says my phone obsession is a symptom, not a cause, and rooted in my tendency to procrastinate. She gives me a script to work with at home and says I need to come back for another session. Does it work? Only in the short term. I never got past my queasily solipsistic reaction to the tone of the affirmations. I need to be tougher, not softer, on myself. 2. The phone-stacking game This one’s for the 47 percent of millennials who, according to the Hartman Group, think it’s alright to tweet over dinner. The rules are simple: place your devices in the centre of the table, on top of each other – like grown-up Jenga. Sit, ignore your phone and concentrate on your dining companions, even as texts come through. The first one to crack and pick up their phone also picks up the bill for the entire party. Does it work? Sort of. Perhaps because I was dining with impoverished journalists, nobody caved. But it was incredibly difficult to ignore my phone as it sat there buzzing like a toddler nagging for sweets at the supermarket. 3. The Treetox Chewton Glen in the UK runs what is perhaps the gold standard of digital detoxes. It shares the woodland setting and back-tonature idealism of Camp Grounded, but here the luxury is dialled up to 11. I leave my laptop at home but take my iPhone with me. The retreat includes several spa sessions designed to quiet singing minds (EFT, a facial, a cleansing body wrap and a massage said to realign the chakras). I pass on the EFT but try every other treatment and they are, without exception, soothing. It’s the setting that really makes a difference, though: installed in one of their tree-house suites perched above the forest canopy, you get a definite sense of being dislocated from on-theground pressures. That and the gentle outdoor exercise that is built into the programme… Part of the problem with being hooked on email is that it ties you to your desk. The antidote – getting out into nature and looking around you rather than focusing intently on your screen – is probably the best tonic I’ve tried. Does it work? Yes. I switched my phone off when I got there. And apart from a quick call before bed to check in with my boyfriend, I didn’t feel tempted to switch it on again until I left.

ILLUSTRATION: GETTYIMAGES.COM

RECENTLY THERE’S been a concerted push to get people off their phones. Some restaurants have banned diners taking photos of their food. And an Australian campaign called Stop Phubbing (that’s snubbing someone in favour of your phone) is gaining traction globally. But it may not be as simple as saying no. Evidence suggests that the internet is, in a very real sense, addictive. Scientists think we may be hooked on email for the same reason Skinner’s rats got hooked on his reward system: because an inbox might deliver but often doesn’t. BlackBerry wasn’t christened CrackBerry for nothing. So it’s just as well we now have retreats for the afflicted. Levi Felix runs The Digital Detox (or Camp Grounded), deep in the California woods. There you have to relinquish every single device at the door, along with your name. ‘At Camp Grounded we don’t talk about work. There is no networking,’ Felix explains. ‘The best way to take away the networking part is to take away the opportunity to put someone in a position based on their name.’ Instead, stressed-out Silicon Valley execs are given aspirational nicknames like ‘Freedom’. It sounds too twee and SoCal-encountergroup for words, but Felix says campers reap quantifiable benefits once they’re home. ‘I hear about events where 30 people go to the park, put their phones in a basket and detox on a Saturday. People say they’ve lost weight because they no longer eat lunch at their desks. I talk to people who’ve said their relationship with their [spouse] is better because they no longer take their cellphone into the bedroom.’ The question is: am I too far gone for rehab?


Private Edition Investec Issue 22