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February 2012

the little black book For the city

Urbane fox smart and bright spring tailoring / classic watch auctions / private(ish) jets an aFrican river saFari / 2012’s must-have tech / spain’s bordeaux-beating wine



Villeret Collection Complete Calendar Half-Hunter Patented under-lugs correctors Secured calendar and moon-phases mechanism




Tchaik wears: glasses, £290, Cutler & Gross; linen jacket, £995, and cotton linen trousers, £550, both Burberry Prorsum; print shirt, £175, Burberry Brit

Cover illustration by Brett Ryder

Show Media Brummell editorial 020 3222 0101 Editor Joanne Glasbey Art Director Dominic Bell Associate Editor Henry Farrar-Hockley Chief Copy Editor Chris Madigan Picture Editor Juliette Hedoin Copy Editor Sarah Evans Fashion Director Tamara Fulton Creative Director Ian Pendleton Managing Director Peter Howarth Advertising & Events Director Duncan McRae 07816 218059

The Notting Hill location for this issue’s style shoot was designed by architect Tchaik Chassay for David Hockney. When the artist moved to LA, Chassay moved in with his wife Melissa. The couple are the subject of one of Hockney’s best known portraits.

Contents 12


Beaumonde 17

Visit Brummell’s website for more tailor-made content:

Desmond Mucklan; Andy Barter


Colour reproduction by Fresh Media Group, Printed by The Manson Group, Brummell is designed and produced by Show Media Ltd and distributed with Financial News. All material © Show Media Ltd. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission is strictly prohibited. While every effort is made to ensure the accuracy of the information contained in this publication, no responsibility can be accepted for any errors or omissions. The information contained in this publication is correct at the time of going to press. £5 (where sold). Reader offers are the responsibility of the organisation making the offer – Show Media accepts no liabillity regarding offers.

Foreword The City needs to win the debate about bonuses, says David Charters – and, he argues, it would help if the payments were viewed as a reward not an entitlement Money no object The leaner, greener, new V8 version of the Bentley Continental GT



News Fabergé returns to London; a British car manufacturer is reborn; and the City Ski Championships have a new home Wine Five years ago López de Heredia was an unfashionably subtle Rioja. Now, its vintages are desirable, collectible – and cheap Private jets A new scheme for jet-sharing means luxury, convenience and smart budget management Technology Just unveiled: the new screen, sound and comms devices you will almost certainly want to own as soon as they are available



Shooting Live out your Sharpe’s Rifles/Jack Sparrow fantasies by collecting muzzle-loading guns After the City How Olivier Bonnefoy swapped global macro-products for ‘product’ with his Gentlemen’s Tonic grooming salons

Features 37





Travel The luxury riverboat Zambezi Queen offers safaris from a very different angle Suiting It may be bespoke for the personal touch, but for up-to-the-minute fabrics and a cuttingedge silhouette, look to the fashion houses Style Tailoring with a bigger splash of colour, as if David Hockney were your personal stylist Watch auctions A guide to acquiring classic timepieces, from around £50 to over £1m for some Pateks By George Angelo Galasso: the bold Italian designer who says we’re ready for more flamboyance



Target pracice It’s that time of year again, when we suffer slings and arrows for earning outrageous fortunes. We need to win the media war and explain the positive impact we deliver – and also remind ourselves that bonuses are a reward, not an entitlement Words David Charters Illustration Brett Ryder

Does anyone apart from me want a bonus this year? Of course you do. We all do. If for nothing else, because of all the ‘A’ words – ambition, avarice and, of course, awesomeness. The problem is that a whole bunch of people who ought to know better have seized on the credit crunch as an excuse for payback time against all the people they knew at university who have outshone and above all out-earned them by going into the City rather than something dodgy and unethical like politics or journalism. No one with as many as two brain cells to rub together would ever seek to minimise the impact of the crunch. It was huge – far bigger than anything any of us had experienced in our careers up to that point. And it is undeniably true that getting over it will take years and come at great cost. But demonising an entire industry, most of whom had not the remotest connection with the very specific areas that got us all into trouble, is intellectually dishonest. Other industries have their moments too – try pharmaceuticals, or the nuclear industry, or oil and gas – but we are sufficiently rational not to interfere with the parameters within which they operate. Investment banking is different. Bankers make better targets than oilmen because what we do seems so remote, our work (and often our successes) so abstract, that the rewards we reap are for many people unacceptable. As an industry, we have been lamentable at explaining the positive impact that we deliver. And in today’s world, winning on the battlefield is not enough – you have to win the media war as well. When politicians fail, they rarely come clean and take responsibility. Regulators and civil servants certainly don’t. And of course the media are never wrong. So when something really bad happens, the first priority is to find a scapegoat. The ideal scapegoat – with a big target stuck to his back – is someone that most other people don’t know, or if they do know, don’t particularly relate to. ‘Bankers’ as a generic group are ideal. The fact

that bankers do a myriad different things is an inconvenient detail best swept under the carpet. What many people don’t understand is why bankers need to be paid in the way they are. That is because most people have never worked as investment bankers and indeed could not – or in some cases would rationally decide not to, given the demands and the sacrifices required. Traditionally, in a business where revenues are lumpy and unpredictable, every firm wants to keep its fixed overheads to a minimum. But, by the same token, in a highly mobile job market, significant success for the firm should be rewarded by equivalent success for the individual. Given the scale of the ambitions at work in investment banking – and here we really do need to tell the story of our achievements for governments, corporates and ultimately society as a whole – we should be incentivising people to aim for the stars, and reward them in a stellar way if they deliver. To me, none of that should be controversial, any more than rewarding stellar talent in other fields. The problem is that we failed as an industry to implement our own system properly. If we had stuck to first principles, then we might not be in the position we are in today. By the time of the crunch, the system that had led to such huge growth and great success in investment banking, turning the industry into a massive global talent magnet, had become distorted. Unhealthy unspoken assumptions had crept in. Bonuses were no longer that – a dividend, a reward – but instead were expected. Top achievers did justifiably well,

Too much was paid out in cash rather than being held back, and there was a clear and logical potential for a conflict of interest

but the mediocre middle did relatively far too well. Super-managers did astronomically well, often without actually meeting any clients or taking any trading decisions themselves. Too much was paid out in cash rather than being held back, and there was clear and logical potential for a conflict of interest between the risk-takers and their owners. And no one should ever be paid a bonus for unrealised profits – how crazy is that? So the system we had invented, and which turned us all into tigers, had become warped and distorted. It no longer served the interests it was meant to, and when things went wrong, it is hardly surprising that we were criticised. But before anyone tries anything too radical – particularly if the anyone in question happens to be one of the many who have felt for years that they had their noses pressed against the glass, looking in at the glorious world of the City – can we have a go at sorting this out ourselves? By which I mean doing bonuses properly again. It would mean managers managing, taking tough decisions, possibly themselves agreeing to forego some of what they have come to regard as their entitlement – pay for organisational seniority rather than revenues they have generated themselves, and perhaps leading once more from the front. The most impressive bankers that I ever worked with remained producer-managers to the end, regardless of seniority, always pitching business, cultivating clients and overseeing transactions. If we don’t get this right, others will do it for us. It may already be too late, but at least let’s try, and let’s engage actively – and with humility – with the people who may otherwise mess things up, in some cases with the best and most honourable of intentions. If we don’t tell our story in 2012, no one will. The Ego’s Nest, the fifth novel by David Charters about City anti-hero Dave Hart, is published by Elliott and Thompson, price £6.99

One heart Three legends




With its Manufacture Caliber 01, Breitling has created the most reliable, accurate and top-performance of all selfwinding chronograph movements – entirely produced in its own workshops and chronometercertified by the COSC. A perfectly logical accomplishment for a brand that has established itself as the absolute benchmark in the field of mechanical chronographs.

For your nearest stockist in Great Britain and Ireland telephone 020 7637 5167



MONEY NO OBJECT The sleek, sporty and ecologically sound new V8 version of the Bentley Continental GT Words Simon de Burton Photography Tif Hunter


Less could very well be more in the case of the Bentley’s new Continental GT V8. Those familiar with the quintessentially British (but Germanowned) marque will know that the original Continental GT first appeared in 2003 with a vast, six-litre, ‘W12’ engine of 567 horsepower which promised a top speed nudging 200mph. The ‘Conti’ has proved to be the best-selling Bentley of all time, but now it sits slightly uneasily in our increasingly ecologically aware world. Enter the new four-litre, V8 version. The twin-turbo GT V8 is 40 per cent more fuel-efficient than the W12, yet is still capable of a licence-losing 180mph and can cover the 0-62mph dash in 4.9 seconds, just three-tenths slower than its stablemate. It remains, of course, superbly appointed with an options list as long as your arm yet, at £122,000, the ‘basic’ V8 costs 10 per cent less than the equivalent W12 – although the latter will remain available for those who still can’t accept that size really doesn’t matter… Available at HR Owen;;


Photo courtesy of Magic Car Pics

The new Morgan Plus 8 makes use of technology from the aircraft industry to achieve an unladen weight of 1150kgs. This makes the car the lightest V8 passenger car in the world. One of the stiffest in its class; The aluminium chassis braces the mighty BMW V8 coupled to a six speed manual or automatic gearbox. With a truly coachbuilt body handcrafted onto this, the car can then be built bespoke to your taste down to the last detail. Superbly responsive, the car is the ideal companion on country and urban roads. You can have all the fun possible in a car with a clear conscience that impact on nature is kept at a minimum. For more information please visit Car pictured: 4.8litre Morgan Plus 8. Fuel economy: 25.2mpg (Combined) CO2 : 269gr/km. Price: ÂŁ71,000+VAT

NEWS | bEAumoNdE


Hand-picked holiday homes, masterpieces of photography and the finest footwear

Auto revival The most dedicated petrolhead could be forgiven for finding themselves unfamiliar with Atalanta Motors, but the British car manufacturer that sank without trace in 1939 after just two years of production is making a comeback. Businessman and classic car enthusiast Martyn Corfield bought the rights to the Atalanta name and will launch a limited run of brand new cars in March this year. ‘The story of Atalanta Motors needs to be told,’ says Corfield. ‘It was a company that was ahead of its time, but stopped dead by the outbreak of war.’ The design will remain faithful to the elegant Thirties originals but, thankfully, there has been a full under-the-hood overhaul. Prices from £80,000;

Ski here For many City ski enthusiasts, mid-March has, for the past 10 years or so, meant a trip to Courmayeur in Italy’s Aosta Valley for the City Ski Championships. However, this year’s event is at a new destination, and part of the Momentum Ski Festival in Crans Montana, Switzerland, with comedy and music adding to the on-slope fun. Performing at the Momentum Ski Festival will be some of the UK’s best stand-up comedians, including TV and BBC Radio 4 stars Marcus Brigstocke and Rufus Hound, with music from The Feeling. Crans Montana is the coming resort in Switzerland and has seen a lot of development – mainly in the building of five-star hotels and luxury chalets. The ski area is topped with a glacier, running into an open bowl and descending into interesting tree runs. It’s a lot of fun – very much like the nightlife. 15-18 March. Packages from £665pp for three days;

Home from home SJ Villas is a personalised service that specialises in beautiful holiday home rentals round the globe, chosen by the duo running the company. They say they turn down more properties than they list, claiming to be ‘very picky’. Which is good news for those with no time to trawl the internet; you can be sure that each property is of the highest standard in location, accommodation, services and every luxury. Whether you want to stay in The Beach House in Koh Samui – an elegant and sophisticated beachfront home, pictured – or Casa Diana in the Dominican Republic – a colonial-style villa five minutes by golf cart from a PGA course, you can be assured of top quality all through the experience.

Horse play As suggested by its name, Breitling’s Colt – newly redesigned – offers a fresh, youthful and dynamic style, balanced with sturdiness and comfort. Available in three versions – including a chronograph (pictured above) and a wonen’s watch – the Colt offers water resistance to 300 metres or 500 metres. Sophisticated, sporty and playful: a winning combination for a spirited character. £3,110;


bEAumondE | nEWS

Eve’s eye The late, great, Eve Arnold was a pioneering photographer whose oeuvre was truly diverse and magical. A retrospective of her work is taking place at Art Sensus next month, presenting over 100 images. All About Eve offers a wide range of work drawn from her personal archive, including photographs of Marilyn Monroe, portraits of other Hollywood legends, and many political figures, often taken in her work for The Sunday Times Magazine and for Magnum agency. It also outlines Arnold’s extensive travels and insatiable curiosity about the world and its people. In the accompanying book almost half of the images have been rarely seen. Prints of her work are still available and very collectable. All About Eve is at Art Sensus, 2 March–27 April;

Art beat TEFAF Maastricht, is known as the world’s leading art and antiques fair, giving visitors a unique chance to view and to buy works from artists as diverse as Renoir and Anish Kapoor, as well as objects reflecting 7,000 years of excellence in the decorative arts (even BMW Art Cars, such as the Jeff Kons edition pictured). A distinctive feature of TEFAF is elegantly displayed genuine masterpieces offered by more than 260 prestigious art and antiques dealers from 18 countries. The fair has led the way in establishing proper vetting procedures: 29 committees, made up of over 170 experts in every field of art represented at the fair, verify each and every object for quality, authenticity and condition, so visitors always buy with confidence. To celebrate its silver jubilee, this year TEFAF also has an exhibition of master drawings, including works by Leonardo da Vinci, Rubens and Rembrandt. 16-25 March;

HISTORIC RETURN Iconic jewellery house Fabergé has returned to London with a brand new flagship store on Mayfair’s Grafton Street. Famous historically for its precious eggs embellished with exquisite enamel and fancy stones, Fabergé now produces a range of handmade men’s and women’s watches in addition to fine jewellery. Particularly special is a limited collection of egg pendants in 60 different designs featuring rose gold and diamond detailing. An opulent love token indeed.

Well shod They say you can judge a man by the shoes he’s wearing, and if this widely held belief has you shaking in last season’s boots, you had better pay a visit to Justin Deakin. You’ll find his shop situated on east London’s Hanbury Street where Deakin takes on the best of British: Chelsea boots, brogues and loafers receive his renowned attention to detail, shape, style and quality. And, as all his shoes are made in England (even the tassels and silks are UK-sourced), you’ll be sure to leave a small yet stylish carbon footprint.

20 beAumonde | wine

wine oF THe TimeS Clockwise from below: López de Heredia’s original 1877 bodega; the label of the great 1942 vintage; Zaha Hadid’s tasting room pays respect to the vineyard’s heritage

Rioja of ages When Spain’s winemakers turned up the dial on fruit and tannin and alcohol, one bodega rejected the trend. After two decades in the wilderness, it is now the toast of connoisseurs Anyone visiting the historic region of Rioja cannot fail to be struck by the remarkable number of dramatic, cutting-edge ‘statement’ wineries which dot its rugged landscape. One is the brilliantly mesmeric Ysios Bodega near Laguardia; another is Frank Gehry’s fabulous hotel and winery at Marques de Riscal in Elciego. But arguably, the most distinctive of all the bodegas is ancient rather than contemporary. Founded in 1877 and situated in the Rioja Alta capital Haro, López de Heredia’s only ‘statement architecture’ is a funky little tasting room designed by Zaha Hadid. Otherwise almost nothing has changed in a century or more. Least of all, its ultra-traditional methods of winemaking. Over the last two decades, while the rest of Rioja rushed to make fashionable alta-expresion reds – full of power, alcohol, fruit and tannin – López de Heredia did the opposite. It remained true to its roots and carried on producing the most exquisitely elegant, aged red (as well as white and rosé) Riojas. Many thought this was commercial suicide as the wines became ever

more difficult to sell. How times change. Over the last two or three years, López de Heredia’s flagship single-vineyard wines have become the most unlikely global cult wines among collectors and sommeliers. Meanwhile, general manager MaríaJosé López de Heredia, great-granddaughter of the founder, finds herself hosting vertical tastings in Miami, Tokyo or London. María-José is delighted by her family’s newfound fame. Not least, because they compromised none of their principles in order to achieve it. ‘We never set out to be fashionable. We simply wanted to make the best wines we can, wines that are true to our heritage and terroir. We haven’t changed at all. It is the market that has come back to us.’ Not that long ago, the wines of López de Heredia were astonishingly cheap. Now, with collectors clamouring for them, they are moving up in price. Even so, they still represent remarkable value when compared to some neighbours and an absolute steal compared to Cru Classe Bordeaux. Further good news for its ever-increasing fan base is that López de Heredia still has plenty of

vintages in its magnificent fungus-covered cellars – largely due to the previous lack of demand. There are reportedly several hundred thousand bottles of Gran Reservas alone, going back to the 1885. A number of these are commercially available from the bodega itself, including the legendary ’64 at €600 a bottle or the ’42 (closer to €1,000). Reserva and Crianza wines can be picked up much more cheaply. At a recent Christie’s sale a case of the ’64 Tondonia Crianza went for just £800. Younger vintages are in more plentiful supply. In the UK, Berry Bros & Rudd offer several vintages including the relatively recently released 1991 Vina Bosconia Gran Reserva Tinto at £95 a bottle. According to the critic Stephen Tanzer: ‘For this much complexity in aged Burgundy, you’d pay twice as much.’ Berry Bros & Rudd is also listing several other wines including the ’87 and ’91 Tondonia Blanco Gran Reservas for £95 and £65 apiece. However, there’s no hurry to drink them up, as these unique wines will age as well as any great white Graves. According to María-José, ‘the Gran Reserva whites will peak at around 50 years of age’. The reds take even longer. In the last two years, London wine merchant The Sampler has begun selling an exciting and ever-changing range of traditional, fully mature Riojas going back to the Twenties. Many of the wines come direct from bodegas’ own cellars and include some of Rioja’s most famous names such as La Rioja Alta, Paternina, Contino, Berberana, Riscal, Murrieta and Carlos Serres as well as López de Heredia. According to The Sampler’s Jamie Hutchinson, one of the reasons for their popularity is value for money. ‘Wine-lovers like the fact that they can buy a great 20-30 year old wine for as little as £30-£40 a bottle. Right now sales of the older vintages are out-stripping the younger vintages by 10 to one.’;;; words John Stimpfig

22 beAumonde | privAte jets

Air supply Private jet travel is convenient and luxurious – that’s a given. But now, thanks to an innovative flight-sharing company, it can mean value too

Clive Jackson has owned a holiday home in Mallorca for some years. Thanks to a BMI flight from Heathrow, he and his wife have escaped to the island whenever possible. So when BMI cancelled its service he was not best pleased. But unlike many who might simply grumble, Jackson, who has made millions in digital marketing, decided to do something about it. ‘I was sitting with a group of other regulars and I asked them, “What can we do about this?” he remembers. ‘The man sitting next to me suggested that we charter a plane but that would cost around £8,000 and we’d have to know that we all wanted to use it the same time.’ Convinced that there must be an alternative, Jackson began to research the demand for flights to Mallorca. By January 2010, he believed that there were sufficient numbers to merit some kind of service, albeit not a conventional scheduled route. ‘I didn’t want to start an airline but I realised that the solution was a platform that allowed people to see in real time how many others might want to charter a plane,’ he says. This platform is called Victor. Describing itself as ‘an online community of people with a shared desire to use private jets,’ Jackson’s new venture is a sort of very high-end eBay and price comparison site with a social media element, which makes using private aviation more affordable than the traditional business of simply chartering a private jet by allowing those affluent travellers who are willing to share a private aircraft to do so.

Victor members can buy single seats on a private jet that is already flying at a time and to a destination that is also of interest to them. Those using Victor to charter a private jet can sell spare seats on it, be it when they’re travelling or on the otherwise unused leg. Having chosen my route and date on the site, my particular flight, for instance, comes up as costing around £750. By logging in to the site Victor members can see what flights by private jet are going where and can register their interest in buying a seat. The more who fly on a plane, the lower the price per seat and the more who join Victor, the greater availability of seats on the site. The name, which Jackson the marketer thought carefully about, is more than an airline call sign. ‘It’s about playing and winning, in this case, getting the best deal on a flight,’ he explains. A jet charterer receives an email informing them when a seat has been sold. ‘So instead of paying, say, £6,000 for their aircraft, it could now only be £2,000. It’s a nice little bonus.’

Someone chartering a jet can sell spare seats on it… so instead of paying, say £6,000, it could now only be £2,000

Victor makes its money from a 30 per cent commission on this fee plus a five per cent charge per sale. Jackson has funded the business himself from its concept and now, following a successful soft launch last summer, he is seeking to raise another £1.5m to accelerate Victor’s expansion. Already there are just over 700 members and the potential for 441,000 route combinations as the system develops and more jet charterers use it. Jackson claims that he is ‘democratising private jet use’ , but isn’t exclusivity the whole point of this mode of travel? Well, 87 per cent of Victor’s clients say they are happy to share their cabin space (not just take advantage of an empty leg). And Jackson believes that even more charterers will come to understand that accommodating other passengers can save considerable sums while still offering private jet travel’s freedom and flexibility. ‘It also depends who you’re travelling with – some members are happy to talk to likeminded individuals, others might be thrilled to be seated alongside a world famous golfer or mountaineer,’ he says. ‘Others might just say hello and then politely ignore each other.’ Certainly the Victor member whose jet Jackson and I used to reach Palma and which would otherwise have flown down to the island empty is not averse to sharing. ‘I’d have no objection,’ he says, ‘and if it brings in a bit of extra cash then that’s all to the good.’ Words SImon Brooke

Paradise Found Petite Anse Bay, on the south west coast of Mahe, is the location for one of the world’s finest and most exclusive beaches. The three- to six-bedroom freehold Four Seasons Private Residences nestle amid secluded plots averaging one hectare. Each villa is uniquely designed by the internationally acclaimed architect Cheong Yew Kuan to harmonise with the dramatic granite landscape and panoramic ocean views. Owners can take advantage of the Concierge Service and the extensive facilities at the renowned Four Seasons Resort Seychelles set in the middle of the 70 hectare estate.

Prices from US$7,250,000 LONDON: +44 20 8166 8122 Four Seasons Private Residences Seychelles are not owned, developed or sold by Four Seasons Hotels Limited or its affiliates (Four Seasons). The developer, Petite Anse Developments Ltd., uses the Four Seasons trademarks and tradenames under a license from Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts Asia Pacific Pte Ltd. The marks “FOUR SEASONS”, “FOUR SEASONS HOTELS AND RESORTS,” any combination thereof and the Tree Design are registered trademarks of Four Seasons Hotels Limited in Canada and U.S.A. and of Four Seasons Hotels (Barbados) Ltd. elsewhere.

Hackett Mayfair represents the very best in design and tailoring. Offering luxury from top to toe, the Hackett Mayfair collection is synonymous with contemporary city style, blending formal luxury with modernity for today’s gentleman and his lifestyle. Inspired by classic style icons from early 1960s London, the Hackett Mayfair cut has an overall ‘trim’ aesthetic and is recognised by the symbol of a bowler hat with crossed umbrellas – a wry gentleman’s take on the iconic skull and crossbones.

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THE POWER LIST Fresh from this year’s Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, we select the technology you should know about in the coming months, from intelligent television screens to a computer made of glass Words Henry Farrar-Hockley

Samsung ES8000 If this year’s key trend is the so-called ‘smart TV’, then the movement’s flag bearer is arguably this Minority Report-inspired LED screen from Samsung. The ES8000 uses the same dual-core processors found in PCs to allow you to switch quickly between, say, Twitter and Top Gear, while a built-in webcam provides two distinct benefits over and above the usual video calls to Australian relatives. The first is a facial recognition feature that identifies the viewer, then automatically loads up your favourite apps, channels and multimedia content. The second allows users to bypass the remote and change channels, find programme information and adjust the volume via voice commands or simply by waving your hand. Last, but not least, a discreet slot on the back of the set permits future hardware upgrades without having to buy another TV set. Price yet to be announced;

Invoxia NVX 610 French technology start-up Invoxia has combined the best elements of mobile, internet and landline telephony with its polished smart desktop phone. A plug-and-play device with no long-winded set-up or line rental, it operates via both iPhone and VOIP services such as Skype. With eight microphones built into the base to allow crystal-clear conference calls, and a traditional handset design letting you make calls and access iCalendar simultaneously, it’s ideal for business. £499;

Parrot Zik by Starck These over-the-ear, noise-cancelling headphones effectively eradicate two common personal-audio gripes. First, thanks to Bluetooth, there’s no dangly cabling. Second: a simple, gesture-based control system makes a fiddly remote control panel unnecessary. To turn up the volume, run a finger up the outside of the earcup; to change tracks, just drag your digit left or right. Even better: the music only starts playing when you put the headphones on, and stops when you remove them again. Price TBA;

FujiFilm X-Pro1 In 2011, Fuji’s X100 made waves: a fixed-lens camera, it provided the optimal blend of vintage styling and bleeding-edge technology. It had the clout of a much larger SLR, but also the portability and aesthetics of an old Leica. This year, the concept has been advanced. The X-Pro1 is the first X series camera to offer interchangeable lenses, as well as an improved 16MP light sensor that manages exceptional colour reproduction. From around £1,100;


HP Envy 14 Spectre The vaunted Ultrabook laptop niche has been gathering momentum this year, and HP’s glossy new model is a prime example of this emerging category that promises equal doses of power and portability. The first talking point is purely aesthetic: the lid is made of highly resistant ‘Gorilla Glass’ (a pleasing design quirk that continues on to the backlit keyboard). Other key specs include a borderless 14in screen; Intel Core i5 processor, NFC contactless technology; and 128GB of solid-state storage. From around £1,200;

Arcam rPac A drawback of PCs is a lack of sound performance, yet they are typically where we store our music. Hence Cambridge-based audiophiles Arcam’s little black box, the rPac. A combination digital-toanalogue converter and headphone amplifier, the USB-powered device gives depth and clarity to your Mac’s or PC’s tinny, lifeless audio. This sonic nirvana can either be outputted to a hi-fi system or headphones, and the box is slim enough to fit in a laptop case. £150;

b&O Play beolit 12 Bang & Olufsen launches its ‘high street’ sub-brand Play with the covetable Beolit 12 AirPlay speaker. Designed by outsider Cecilie Manz – whose products have turned up everywhere from Georg Jensen to the set of cult TV series Forbrydelsen – this diminutive sound system uses three concealed speakers powered by a 120-watt digital amplifier. It is built to travel too, with a compartment to store cables; leather carry handle; and a built-in battery that musters eight hours’ use from a single charge. Price TBA;

57 - 58 South Audley Street london W1K 2ed +44 (0)20 7499 1801

guns | beAumonde


duel control A cased pair of 40-bore flintlock duelling pistols by Joseph Manton, circa 1815, which sold for £18,000

SHOT AND AWE Find pheasant shooting a little ho hum? Try a mighty muzzleloader for maximum effect The average Kalashnikov weighs in at about 11.5lbs, is 34 inches long and fires between 600 and 650 rounds a minute. In terms of use, it’s an easy tool compared to the weaponry Wellington’s soldiers were brandishing at the Battle of Waterloo. The early 19th-century British infantryman’s stock firearm, the Brown Bess, fired – if you were really quick – three rounds a minute and was up to 62 inches long. That’s about five inches less than the height of an average soldier. It was undoubtedly a gun for those of a robust spirit; you’d need arms of steel to wield and load it for hours on end in a close-fought battle. In 2012, it is also one of a select group of firearms – muzzle-loaders – that you can buy and keep in the UK without having to hold any form of licence.

Muzzle-loading guns consist of pistols, muskets and rifles. As the name suggests, they are loaded by manually wedging gunpowder (or black powder, as it used to be known), a bullet and wadding down the barrel. At face value, they may sound rather an odd investment vehicle but, as Thomas Del Mar, one of the country’s top antique armoury specialists, points out: ‘Any antique firearm is exempt from capital gains tax because it has moving parts and is thus classified as a machine.’ As a general rule of thumb, industry insiders advise that firearms increase in value at five to 10 per cent above inflation. Moreover, muzzle loaders made by the great makers, such as Manton and Purdey, have an extra rarity value. Created with extreme skill, they often feature extraordinary embellishments. David Williams of Bonhams observes that, while these weapons may have been built for a grimly practical purpose in their day, their aesthetic value now earns them a place among the applied arts: ‘They’re beautifully decorated and made. It’s why most museums have a gallery dedicated to arms and armoury. They’re works of art in their own right.’ As such, they can come with quite substantial price tags. At its next auction in April, Bonhams is selling a pair of rare 18th-century pistols with solid silver barrels and locks, with an estimated value of £40,000-£60,000. At Thomas Del Mar’s June sale, in conjunction with Sotheby’s, there are over 200 antique firearms for auction with

They’re beautifully decorated and made. It’s why most museums have a dedicated arms gallery

SHOOTING STARS From top: A pair of 28 bore doublebarrelled percussion travelling pistols by J. Lang, circa 1830; one of a pair of 38 bore Silesian flintlock holster pistols which sold for £12,000; part of a pair of 22 bore silver-mounted flintlock pistols by Barbar, circa 1770

prices ranging from as little as £200 up to £30,000. For example, a Brown Bess, in good condition and with a Waterloo provenance, may set you back £5,000. A decent pair of English duelling pistols – which were often given by women to their fiancés as wedding presents – can cost from £6,500. You can actually fire these guns, but it won’t do their value or their condition a great deal of good. As soon as you want to pull the hefty trigger, it’s mandatory to acquire a firearms licence and join one of the muzzle-loading clubs approved by the Home Office. One such is the Muzzle Loaders Association of Great Britain where trainer Andrew Grimmett reckons that he can get most people managing to shoot pretty accurately and loading safely by the end of one day. You’ll probably only manage one shot every four minutes and it’ll take you some time to get used to the fog of black smoke engulfing your head every time you fire but, if nothing else, it surely has to beat the repetition of shooting at endless pheasants. If you’re interested in buying a muzzle-loader at auction, Thomas Del Mar Ltd ( has sales on 27 June and 7 December; Bonhams ( has them on 18 April, 18 July and 28 November and Christie’s ( on 26 June. Go to Henry Krank & Co ( to buy reproduction weapons. And to learn to shoot muzzle-loaders, contact the Muzzle Loaders Association of Great Britain ( Words Eloise Napier

Images courtesy of Thomas Del Mar Ltd

32 beAumONde | GuNS



Bell & Ross UK +44 207 096 08 78 . . e-Boutique:

34 beAumonde | After the city

Tonic boom Olivier Bonnefoy traded in global macroproducts for men’s grooming and hit on a winner with his nononsense Gentlemen’s Tonic salons

Recently, Olivier Bonnefoy overheard two men discussing waxing in Waitrose. ‘Two straight guys, who were quite happy to have that conversation in a supermarket,’ he says with the tone of a man vindicated. As founder of men’s grooming salon Gentlemen’s Tonic, he was at least partially responsible for the conversation. ‘When we opened seven years ago, men would never divulge where they go for a massage or wax,’ he says, ‘but now they’re more frank when talking about these things. You’ve got scrubs being advertised during the football – not shaving creams, scrubs.’ Smart, fast-talking and supremely engaged, Bonnefoy, 38, is still on a mission. A Frenchman raised on the American East Coast, until eight years ago he was in global macro-

products at the London branch of French bank Fimat International, ‘running a desk that suggested trading commodities, government bonds and so on to clients. It was huge fun but I was very keen to create something, create a brand.’ He settled on men’s grooming having looked into a variety of industries, mainly in the food and beverage arena… bars, nightclubs and restaurants. It came less from passion than hard figures – cheaper set-up costs, no competition and the fact that men here have long spent more on grooming than in any other country – but masculine intuition had something to do with the concept of a city spa dedicated for men, a Soho House version of the traditional Mayfair barber’s. ‘There was the fine tradition of Trumper’s and the rest, who had been around

for 150-some years, but they only offered so much and there was a scare factor for them to offer more. We knew men were going to unisex establishments and feeling awkward, so we created a place that made them feel comfortable.’ Hence the sedate and grown-up haven of green walls and light wood, hidden behind discreetly frosted glass, in which we talk. Here, located just off Berkeley Square, haircuts, wet shaves, massages and skin treatments are briskly undertaken by staff who won’t chatter about your holiday plans but will mix you a Bloody Mary. There are showers in every treatment room, no wandering around in robes, and no hanging around waiting: ‘Men want an efficient, clean service, an instant fix, and they are creatures of habit, they want somewhere they can come back to again and again.’ There were doubters at first, but Bonnefoy had research and timing on his side: ‘When we first set out, people were talking about the “metrosexual”, using examples like David Beckham, and that helped, but it was clear that in this country men just needed a bit more of an outlet.’ He was also aware that there were plenty of others who wanted it too. ‘I don’t think I could have found a better city if I’d tried,’ he says. ‘Not only does London have all the heritage, but it’s the most international city in the world.’ There are now three salons in the capital – the others are in Savile Row (inside Gieves & Hawkes) and at Selfridges, keeping to the same beat since that’s where the demand is – and a Hong Kong branch opened in 2011. Doha and New Delhi are next. The global perspective, says Bonnefoy, is a hangover from his banking years: ‘I keep up with the finance world, I have to. The first 150 clients we had in Hong Kong were bankers who’d moved from London. We knew that our clients were emigrating, that’s why we went.’ Much of his time is now spent abroad, preparing for new ventures; the New Delhi branch will encompass a private members’ club. There is also an ever-expanding product range, though Bonnefoy is aware of his clientele’s limits, even those who are ready to discuss waxing in Waitrose. He tells a story about a large corporation who came to him about a new product: ‘It was a pre-cleanser cleanser. I said, “Do you really think so?” Men are looking for simplicity, for routine. You over-complicate that routine and you have a problem.’ Words James Medd Photography Philip Sinden

Liveyour passion

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Contac. Argento Fine Producs T. 020 7722 24 38 . w w w.frederique-con

A T USCA N DR EA M, 800 Y EA R S I N THE M A K I NG Pisa approximately 45 minutes, Florence and Siena approximately 1 hour Toscana Resort Castelfalfi is a 1,100 hectare estate set around a stunning historic ‘borgo’. Beautiful apartments, traditional farmhouses and a selection of new build villas. Overlooking an established 27-hole golf course, the borgo will also include a boutique hotel, restaurant, pizzeria and range of shops. Apartments from €230,000 (due for completion May 2013) Villas from €1,200,000 Traditional farm houses – price on application W W W. C A S T E L F A L F I . C O . U K

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River wild A contemporary floating safari lodge offers a unique vantage point for watching African wildlife Words Ian Belcher

I could be dreaming. I’m not, but I could be. The world has a sublime, ethereal quality. I’ve been awake for mere seconds and, with nothing more exacting than a raised eyelid, I can see 30, perhaps 40, elephants. They’re just across the river from my open window, drinking with gusto in the soupy light of an African dawn. As hippos grunt and fish eagles shriek, I sit up in bed, plump my pillow and immediately spot five more of the herd ambling down to the water. Short of watching an Attenborough documentary from my sofa, this is the laziest safari on earth. It’s also one of the most stylish. I’m swaddled by high-thread count cotton sheets in a light, white, bright bedroom with floor-toceiling windows and walls studded with monochrome photographs. Nothing shouts. Everything’s understated. But for the savannah breeze it could be London’s Hempel Hotel. It’s one of 14 en-suite cabins on the Zambezi Queen, a converted casino boat now cruising the Chobe River – a relentless inkdark current bisecting the plains of Botswana and Namibia. It has traded the ubiquitous dark wood, tribal regalia and ethnic kitsch of

AFRICAN QUEEN From top: View over Botswana at sunset from the foredeck of the Zambezi Queen; the former casino boat, with its 14 cabins, floats serenely along the Chobe River

traditional lodges for minimalist chic, linear design and vast windows: less Out of Africa than ‘out of Manhattan’. An air of sophisticated nonchalance might suit the boat’s contemporary vibe. But as I board at the isolated custom post of Kasane, in the north of Botswana, my eyes widen at what the owners call ‘wild Africa with whistles and bells’. One half of the top deck has the crisp elegance of a city restaurant; the other is more metropolitan cocktail bar, all cream suede sofas, club chairs and stainless steel stools around a counter of white Italian marble. It’s not total design fascism. Nguni cattle skins and huge, mesmerising paintings of zebra eyes are stylish, low-key reminders of our location. Both ends of the eclectic space open onto sun decks, one sporting a plunge pool with an angular design worthy of Philippe Starck. It’s either marvellously modern or, if you’re a dyed-in-the-wool traditionalist, utterly baffling. After a night serenaded by cicadas and laughing hyena, we start with a four-wheel safari among the 120,000 elephants of Chobe


National Park. The wildlife is prolific – without a hint of stage fright – and our drive climaxes with the sound of lions gorging on freshly butchered warthog. ‘It’s definitely a kill,’ whispers our guide Boata. ‘I heard the crunch of bones.’ It’s an incongruous environment to experience the Zambezi Queen’s startling grand design. But if I need conclusive proof that we really are in the sticks, it comes from The Voice newspaper: a suicide victim has reappeared as a zombie dog; a chicken wearing a necklace has been arrested, imprisoned and executed (I suppose it could happen in Norfolk); and a Cheryl Cole lookalike has given birth to a child fathered by a snake. Life’s a tad saner on board. We head west on the second afternoon of the three-night cruise, and, washed by a warm tropical breeze, the deck mutates into a Balearic beach bar. The plunge pool’s packed, bikini-clad guests recline on sun loungers and a dude in surf shorts strums a guitar. Chilled Tafel beer and fine Cape vino are flowing freely. An unlikely atmosphere for game viewing? Not at all. Powered by muscular jets rather than propellers, the three-storey craft moves like a silently stalking predator, ghosting alongside pods of wallowing hippo. I’m sure I saw a gargantuan buffalo do a double take. The game viewing is immense. Barely five minutes pass without someone pointing excitedly. The wiry, charismatic Brett McDonald, who was the driving force in restoring the boat he spotted rusting on the banks of the Chobe in 2007, is not a man for understatement. He claims the Chobe has the most densely concentrated wildlife of any riverbank on earth. ‘It’s the Galapagos of Africa,’ he says. ‘On winter days at Luguva, our second night anchorage, you’ll see herds of 1,500 buffalo and up to 1,000 elephant.’ We travel a modest 22km. This certainly isn’t Southern Africa’s answer to cruises on

the Nile, Amazon and Mekong. ‘We don’t spend eight hours a day watching the world slip by,’ he insists. ‘We stop, explore and smell the roses. We’re a floating safari lodge.’ Make that a highly exclusive floating safari lodge. Brett owns the mooring rights to the only safe anchorages on this stretch of river, ‘It’s like our own private game park,’ he smiles. ‘No one else can do it.’ Which begs the question: would they want to? Converting the Queen’s rusting hulk in the middle of remote wilderness – without a crane, let alone a shipyard – became an obsession reminiscent of Werner Herzog’s Fitzcarraldo. ‘I was like Noah building the ark,’ he recalls. ‘Locals were thinking, “What has possessed this imbecile?”’ Perhaps they were thinking of the river. The Chobe quickly becomes unnavigable for a large vessel. The solution is to travel with five small satellite boats – the equivalent of lodge Land Rovers – opening up a further 135km of water for safaris and fishing. Perfect. We downsize and spend the dusk – iced sundowners in hand – floating up close and personal with generous herds of animals. It’s an aperitif for a night of bush culture where 150 flaming torches – straight out of a Hollywood tribal epic – kettle us into a massive boma, or enclosure, on the Namibian shore, for impala stew, oxtail and vigorous local dancing. We need the exercise. Fusing safari and cruising, the Zambezi Queen is a gourmet hybrid of the two biggest waist-expanders in the tourist universe. You may be an antelope when you board, but gorge too often on butternut and macadamia soup, fillet beef with bordelaise sauce and decent D’Aria wine, and you’ll depart an elephant. We’re not the only ones with heavyweight appetites. The tiger fish, the world’s greatest piscene fighter, combines the teeth of Nosferatu with the fervour of Gérard Depardieu at an all-you-can-eat buffet. For an astonishing 30 minutes on our final night, every cast ignites an explosion of silver-scaled fury. High on adrenaline, we head back towards the mothership, negotiate a river bend and receive a vivid reminder that the Zambezi Queen is a quite extraordinary modernist creation. Beneath a blue, purple and gold abstract masterpiece of a sunset, the illuminated craft glows like an exotic spaceship landed in the African bush: a final ethereal dream-like vision.

RivERBoat song From top: One of the Zambezi Queen’s bright, contemporary cabins, with unbeatable views of the river; smaller boats – the equivalent of a lodge’s Land Rovers – offer close-up views on the less easily navigable stretch of the Chobe; a beautiful and fierce tiger fish

Cazenove+loyd (020 7384 2332; www.cazloyd. com) offers nine nights in Botswana including three nights on the Zambezi Queen and full-board stays at Kwando Kwara and Kwando Lagoon Camps, including all flights and transfers, from £4,975pp. Since this trip, Brett McDonald has sold his share in the Zambezi Queen to concentrate on his lodges and tailor-made African holiday business Flame of Africa (, but maintains a relationship with the boat.


hamilton grand With an unparalleled location set by the 18th Green and fairway of the world’s most famous Golf Course, Hamilton Grand is being sensitively restored with an “Art Deco” interior. Offering a truly exhilarating and uniquely Scottish experience. This is a unique real estate opportunity for those who want to own a home in the birthplace of golf and in a premier destination that is rich in history.

To discuss the opportunity to buy an apartment at Hamilton Grand, please contact David Vaughan at Savills L&P Ltd +44 (0)20 7016 3740

This is not an offer directed to residents of any state in which registration is required, but in which registration and/or licensing requirements have not yet been met. California residents please refer to the Hamilton Grand website ( for further disclaimer. This advertising material is being used for the purpose of soliciting sales of vacation membership timeshare interests.


tailoring | BrUMMEll


Shape ShifterS Bespoke is desirable, of course, but many tailors adhere to deeply ingrained house styles. For suits with the latest cuts and fabrics, it’s fashion houses who have the edge Words David Waters

The old school of thought concerning the well-made suit goes something like this: an off-the-peg suit is made for somebody else; a bespoke suit is made only for you. Signor Rubinacci uttered these exact words only the other day at the Mount Street branch of the Neapolitan tailor – albeit with a chuckle. But there is no doubt of the mantra that he, his clients and many others hold dear. Anything less than hand-made tailoring is not worth the trouble. However, it is this very lack of bother which make bespoke’s wallet-friendlier cousins so worth checking out. Those of us lucky to have more than a couple of bespoke suits are fortunate indeed: that subtle correction of your sloping shoulder; the slight dip at the back of the trouser to cover your shoe heels; the tailor’s chalked signature; the chosen silk linings are among bespoke’s multifarious pleasures. Yet, as individualised as they are, bespoke suits will always be made with reference to the tailors’ house styles. In fact, this season, the most exciting suits are straight off the catwalks of Milan, London and Paris and are ready now to pull off the hanger. These top-end collections and made-tomeasure services are coming up trumps with the sharpest contemporary silhouettes that

flatter your form and provide instant style cred – without veering off into the more fashionforward foothills. Unlike most ready-made suit jackets, Canali’s are not fused but canvassed, with a camel and horse-hair canvas which moulds to your shape over time, making the fit unique to you. The made-to-measure service uses a choice of blocks, making a smart fit. And, in addition to established favourite fabrics, such as ultra-lightweight, superfine 220- and 230-micron wools, this season’s 200 new fabrics give an almost limitless range of possibilities. Su Misura, Giorgio Armani’s made-tomeasure service that launched in 2006, is this season available throughout Armani’s global retail empire. ‘I realised that I have clients who really do want a unique product, made specifically for them,’ says Armani. This season, trousers have pleated waistbands for seated comfort while the two silhouette collections, relaxed ‘Linea Naturale’ and the fitted ‘Linea Costruita’, offer a range of day and evening suits. Not to be left out of all this fine tailoring, Gucci headlines its spring made-to-measure ads featuring chiselled actor James Franco poured into his perfectly fitting dinner suit.

‘Personalised formalwear is the ultimate way for a man to express his own style,’ says Gucci’s creative director, Frida Giannini. Fighting words, but hard to execute, perhaps, when you want to look exactly like Mr Franco. It is refinement and attention to detail that is making ready-to-wear and made-tomeasure suits worth investing in this year. New British brand Rake has taken the detailing of bespoke and loosened it up with the possibility of buying trousers and jackets separately and accompanying their elegantly proportioned tailoring with silk scarves or open-necked shirts. With a collection that includes linen and cotton blends as well as waffle-weave pure wools, their half-lined construction offers cool ease, and comfort comes virtually guaranteed. Available at With three tailoring labels, Ralph Lauren’s suit offering this season includes ‘monochromatic navy and tan’. This is found in the tailored Purple Label while Ralph Lauren’s business-ready Black Label brandishes razor-sharp proportions in black and blue. The standout piece right now is a two-button pinstripe styled with a decoinspired wide-dot tie. It would hang happily in

loUiS VUitton

the wardrobe of Italian dandy Lapo Elkann and give George Osborne a fright. But it expertly shows the breadth of classic tailoring on offer this year. Over at Ferragamo and E. Tautz (the British Fashion Council’s 2010 menswear designer of the year), double-breasted suits are making an impressive comeback. Gone are the DB’s excess-baggage details of chalk striped wool and gaping jacket fronts. Neat, sharp and fitted, the new double-breasted is worn fully buttoned and with a slight crop, and is worn over slim-fitting trousers. Patrick Grant, E. Tautz’s designer, took creative inspiration for this from Felix Carvajal, a marathon-running postman from Havana who competed in the 1904 Olympics. It’s the sportiness of the lightweight flannel that makes these double-breasted suits so comfortable and easy to wear.;

E. taUtZ

For those of us who don’t have to don a suit daily, make space for Dunhill’s ‘Cambedoo’ blazer – the wardrobe’s latest most versatile weapon. The odd name comes from the region in South Africa this exclusive mohair is from. This particular fibre’s benefits include its crease-resistance, as well as, astonishingly, being stronger than steel of the same diameter. And luckily for this overheated season, it niftily wicks away moisture and excess body heat. Elsewhere in Dunhill’s spring/summer 2012 collection slick suits in black and navy are leavened with retro rowing motif silk ties. Kim Jones’s first collection as men’s style director at Louis Vuitton under creative director Marc Jacobs was a triumphant mix of tailoring and sportswear united under a travel theme. The playboy/artist Peter Beard – that dashing man who has combined James Bond and David Attenborough in one racy,


Spring’s silhouettes continue the ongoing trend for slim and to-the-body neatness. Yet there is a more relaxed feel this season

tailoring | BrUMMEll 43


Africa-centred life – was the collection’s handsome lodestone. ‘Beard is a hero of mine,‘ says Jones. ‘This collection is a fictionalised imagining of that period of travel to Africa in the Sixties and Seventies, which was the time I was growing up in Africa.’ The result of this fine inspiration is a relaxed display of sharp grey two-button suits with rolled up hems and cropped navy blazers over mid-grey flannel trousers and Varsity sportswear under bright Masai-inspired red scarves. They may sound like unlikely combinations yet are very convincing in execution. The suits at Aquascutum this season are much more subdued. Using cloths developed exclusively in English mills, long silhouettes of summer-weight worsteds are elegant and versatile. The company’s classic cut Pritchard suit is the house’s most popular, while the Henderson, which features a contemporary, cropped shape, is cut from Aquascutum’s


best-selling high-twist fabric, making it crease resistant. It is colour that is really defining this season’s tailoring. That great colourist himself, artist David Hockney, is the inspiration behind Brioni’s spring/summer 2012 men’s offering. Eucalyptus, lavender, wine, royal blue and red feature throughout the line. New fabrics display the brand’s reputation for innovation by spinning silk and nylon or microfibre to creative high-performance yet delicate yarns. More subdued pastel hues are key to the Ermenegildo Zegna spring offering. Zegna has done more in fabric development than probably any other fabric company in the world. It’s this expertise in cloth that allows it to showcase shiny silk suits in pastel hues, crispest cotton one-button suits, as well as matt and ‘crafted’ fabrics such as silk and linen herringbones and Prince of Wales plaids.


Double-breasted suits and blazers in cotton and linen crepe pick up on tailoring’s biggest trend while keeping shapes short and to-the-body. The diversity of colour, shape, pattern and fabrication in men’s suits this spring has never been bettered. The silhouettes continue the ongoing trend for slim and to-the-body neatness. Yet there is a more relaxed feel this season. Gone are the whip-thin trousers of a year or two ago and personal style statements are more likely to be made with your choice of shirt, tie and pocket square than the cut of your jacket. Much of what is exciting about these suit lines is ‘under the hood’ where cut-away linings, open weave fabrics and high-tech yarns are only appreciated by you the wearer. Even so, business attire has never looked, well, so unbuttoned. Your suit may not be made for you exactly, but then again no one need ever know.

ORange segMent From left: Colour block knit, £335, and trousers, £209, both Paul smith Double-breasted jacket, £506; blue shirt, £119; and brown trousers, £289; all Paul smith. Glasses, £290, Cutler and gross. Orange and steel-strapped Seamaster Planet Ocean watch, £3,700, Omega. Socks, £12, Hackett. Leather boots, £395, alexander McQueen

style | BRUMMell 45

A bigger slash Bold tailoring with blocks of colour evoke David Hockney’s exuberant palette in a shoot photographed in what was the British master’s Sixties flat Photography Emma Hardy styling Tamara Fulton

tangeRine scheMe This page: Linen and cotton jacket (part of a suit), £1,060, and trousers, £360, both canali. Linen shirt, £120, hackett. Belt, from £69, and socks, £17, both Paul smith. Silk square, £19.95, harrods Opposite: Suit, £1,000, gieves & hawkes. Shirt, £120, hackett

style | BRUMMell 47


KIND OF BLUe Opposite: Linen jacket, £450; linen trousers, £130; linen shirt, £120; all Hackett. Glasses, as before, Cutler and Gross. Belt, from £69, Paul Smith This page: Velvet blazer, £1,120, and trousers, £370, both Alexander McQueen. Cashmere sweater, £150, Ralph Lauren at Harrods. Linen shirt, £125, Gieves & Hawkes Grooming Hina Dohi at Soho Management using Clinique Models Marc Goldfinger at Models 1, Max Rogers at Storm, Adam Holden at Select Photographer’s assistant Gabby Laurent Styling assistants Cat Stirling and Madeleine O’Flaherty With thanks to Candy at East Photographic STOCKISTS DETAILS ON PAGE 54

RECORD DEVICES The Rolex split second chronograph fetched the highest price for any Rolex wristwatch sold at auction, while the Patek Philippe chronograph achieved the world’s highest auction price for a Patek Philippe simple chronograph wristwatch. Overleaf: A rare Patek Philippe watch set the world record for an auction price of this model



Hammer time With luxury timepieces holding their value remarkably well, watch auctions are a must for the serious collector. But it pays to do your homework Words Simon de Burton

In recent years, retail sales of luxury watches have proved to be defiant in the face of financial crises, with all the major brands posting dramatic increases across the board – the giant Swatch Group, for example, shifted timepieces worth almost £5 billion last year, a rise of more than 21 per cent. One of the effects of such buoyancy can be seen in the market for pre-owned watches, notably those being sold at auction. The average man in the street (especially here in parsimonious Britain) still struggles to come to terms with the idea that people spend tens of thousands of pounds on a wristwatch, but such figures pale into insignificance when compared with the sums being splashed out at auction on the rarest vintage pieces. During 2011, Christie’s sold no fewer than nine wristwatches for more than $1 million apiece, two of which fetched in excess of $2m

and one a staggering $3.6m. Such stellar prices helped Christie’s to become the first auction house to smash the $100 million barrier for watch sales in a single year – with a total of $116.3 million realised – while its main rivals, Sotheby’s, Antiquorum and Bonhams, grossed $64.97m, $60.93m and $15m respectively. The really big money, however, is reserved for a single brand: Patek Philippe. Its vintage watches from the Forties and Fifties are far and away the most sought-after by truly serious collectors, and a 1946 Patek World Time which sold for CHF6.6 million a decade ago remains the most expensive wristwatch ever to cross the auction block. Rolex comes next in the league table of collectable names, although the record for the make stands at a ‘mere’ $1.1 million for a 1942 split-second chronograph (pictured, left) that was sold by Christie’s last May. After this,

you’ll find committed vintage collectors battling for watches by brands such as Cartier, Vacheron Constantin and Audemars Piguet. But the times, they are a-changing in the world of watch auctions. Until recently, the world centres were Geneva and New York and, generally speaking, it was older watches that reached the biggest prices. During the past five years, however, some of the new Chinese money that manages to escape being mopped up by the luxury goods giants is finding its way to the Hong Kong watch sales being organised by Antiquorum, Bonhams, Christie’s and Sotheby’s as wealthy Asian enthusiasts attempt to satisfy their burning desire for timepieces. The overall trend in Asia is to bid for contemporary watches by cutting-edge brands such as Richard Mille, Greubel Forsey and Urwerk – although some buyers are gaining


No matter how inexpensive the object, buying at auction can be a nerve-wracking experience for the absolute beginner – so we’ve compiled a 10-point guide for novices. Follow it closely and you should be able to strap on your dream watch without feeling you’ve been handcuffed.


4 Attend the pre-sale view and look carefully at any watches that interest you. Try them on, ensure they are working correctly and, above all, ask the auction house specialists as many questions as possible. They are there to help and will be very happy to explain the process of buying in detail, as well as giving you all the necessary information about individual lots.


Around the world in 20 watch auctions Antiquorum 11 March, Geneva 4 April, New York 19 May, Geneva 2 June, Hong Kong 20 June, New York 11 August, Hong Kong

Bonhams 23 May, Hong Kong 7 June, New York 13 June, London (New Bond Street)

Christie’s 21 May, Geneva 30 May, Hong Kong 13 June, New York

Attend a sale, but go with no intention of bidding. Ideally, go with someone who has experience of auctions, so you can watch what they do and ask questions.



Sotheby’s Auctions held weekly – see website for details.

Closely observe what goes on and get a measure of how the auctioneer works the room, how bidding increments change as prices rise and how experienced buyers ‘time’ their bids. 6 April, Hong Kong 12 May, Geneva 14 June, New York 10 July, London


Watches of Knightsbridge

When you eventually feel ready to buy, get hold of a catalogue for a forthcoming auction and read it carefully. Check the terms and conditions; be sure you understand about ‘buyer’s premium’ and any additional taxes that will be added to the amount of a successful bid. 10 March, London 12 May, London 14 July, London 22 September, London

Select the watch or watches that you are interested in, mark them in the catalogue and resolve not to bid on any that you haven’t researched. If you are planning to bid for a current model, check the retail price and bear in mind that you might end up paying more for a pre-owned example at auction than you would for a brand new one. In any event, look up prices achieved for similar watches in recent sales in order to discover the market value. Antiquorum’s online database is an excellent way to do this.

6 Do not be tempted to buy a timepiece which looks tatty or badly restored – in the current market, condition is everything, regardless of make or model.

7 Look for watches that come supplied complete with their original boxes and paperwork. Any other documentary provenance relating to the watch is also good to have.

8 If you are interested in a very specialised piece – perhaps a high complication, a military Rolex or an exceptionally valuable ‘blue-chip’ collector’s piece, for example – seek the advice of a respected expert in the field. If you are hoping to buy a watch that has been made in several different variants, research the options as thoroughly as possible to avoid paying too much for a less desirable version.

9 If you don’t want to attend the entire auction but you do want to arrive in good time to bid on your chosen lot, roughly calculate when it will be offered on the basis that a moderately fast auction moves at the rate of around 100 lots per hour.

10 When the time finally comes to bid on your ideal watch, set a price limit and stick to it resolutely. Unless it’s a real rarity, avoid paying over the odds – another example will probably appear at auction in the near future.

Christie’s Images Ltd. 2012

sufficient confidence in the timepiece market to start paying large amounts of money for blue-chip vintage pieces. Regardless of where a pre-owned luxury watch is bought or sold, however, the benefits of picking one up at auction remain the same: in the case of most contemporary models, it’s possible to acquire a virtually new watch in excellent condition for a considerable saving over retail; a typical watch auction will feature 200 to 400 lots, so there is a wide choice instantly available. Provided you buy from a reputable house, you can bid with confidence and, not least, if you don’t get carried away and bid over the odds, there’s a good chance you’ll be able to re-sell your purchase later at little or no loss. The biggest watch auctions in London are staged by Bonhams and Sotheby’s. The former holds sales at two levels: it offers more expensive ‘fine watches’ in its New Bond Street rooms and more affordable pieces at its Knightsbridge location. Activity in the London market has also increased recently with the arrival of a new specialist horological auctioneer, Watches of Knightsbridge, while Birmingham-based Fellows has established itself as the leading regional house to specialise in watches at all levels - it stages four sales per year of higher quality pieces together with large, weekly auctions of watches priced from as little as £50.

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OWn CO-RESPOndEnTS Having made his name as a shirtmaker, Angelo Galasso has taken his extravagant aesthetic into all areas of fashion

Bold rush One of Italian fashion’s most flamboyant figures, Angelo Galasso believes that the time is right for men to dress more expressively

‘A guy can see life in one way, and then see it in another way,’ suggests Angelo Galasso. ‘After all, everyone likes to evolve.’ The flamboyant Galasso may not be a name to rival fellow Italians Armani or Versace, but he has had his influence on menswear: Galasso is the car salesman turned investment banker turned shirtmaker who launched the Interno 8 brand in 1990, bringing with it not just the Gianni Agnelliinspired watch-cuff – a section cut out of the cuff to better accommodate a statement timepiece – but a trend for towering collars, open necks and loud prints. In short, he rescued the humble shirt from wardrobe obscurity, creating a 100shop international business in the process. Of his decision to sell up, Galasso says, ‘I like to work with passion and just didn’t feel it any more. We’d built a new reputation for the shirt but I spent a lot of time on the shop floor and could see that the market was going towards something more haute couture…’ Haute couture may sound like an exaggeration, but Galasso’s latest incarnation – as the front

man of an eponymous brand, after launching Billionaire Couture with Flavio Briatore, with whom he in now in a protracted, ‘stressful’ legal battle – comes close. It is not for the wallflower: lavish print and colour, crossed with a high Italian luxe creates the kind of menswear difficult to ignore. Everything, from fat ties to pointy shoes, is available in a more bespoke version should you wish to turn the volume right up. ‘It’s about selling the right fashion for the right customer,’ says Galasso. ‘And there is a customer who wants something bolder.’ For those more comfortable with muted sobriety, Angelo Galasso’s style may prove a leap too far. For others it’s a breath of Neapolitan or Florentine air. Look beyond the extravagant detailing (jackets lined with tie silk, for example) and it is, Galasso argues, actually all rather traditional: Savile Row on a psychedelic high. ‘Savile Row,’ says Galasso, ‘because that’s where the most elegant men are. There, and in Naples.’ Galasso concedes that his new business is more ‘build it and they will come’ than answering a clear need. But he hopes to, as he puts it, ‘catch the right moment… I think in the coming years we’ll start to see men begin to dress much more expressively, a bit Euro, a little more flashily, and they’ll get compliments for that,’ he adds. ‘You can’t overdo the flashiness, of course. You do it with one piece, not head to toe. Some people will still think it’s too much, and that’s fine.’ Fine perhaps because Galasso – who thinks he could build his young business up into another 100-store chain – has something of a track record of going his own way and finding enough men to follow him. It was while he was working in finance and unable to find clothes he liked for himself that, despite a lack of training, he started to make his own. Soon colleagues were placing orders, enough that he decided to go full-time - with the novelty of having women on motorbikes buzzing around Rome taking client measurements at work. Soon, the unlikely combo of Jay-Z, Tony Blair and King Abdullah II of Jordan started buying too. Now, he reckons, we are all undergoing what might be called the mozzarella transformation. Galasso frequently cites the cheese in an analogy of the difference between the quality of men’s clothing a decade ago and today. Ten years ago, the only mozzarella that was available in the UK was standard, even dull. Today, the UK consumer can buy divine burrata mozzarella which comes, coincidentally, from the region of Puglia where Galasso was born. It’s in another class. It’s the kind of difference men are seeing in their clothing choices. Just don’t drip §olive oil on any of it. Words Josh Sims

Stockists Alexander McQueen Blancpain Breitling Burberry Prorsum 020 7806 1303; Canali Cartier Chanel Chopard Cutler and Gross 020 7581 2250;

Gieves & Hawkes 020 7432 6403; Hackett 020 7939 6865; Harrods 020 7730 1234; Omega Panerai Paul Smith 0800 023 4006; TAG Heuer


LONDON • Bond Street • Regent Street • Westfield London • Westfield Stratford City Royal Exchange • Bluewater • Brent Cross • Harrods • Heathrow Airport T1 MANCHESTER • Trafford Centre • LEEDS • Commercial Street • BIRMINGHAM • Bullring

Brummell February 2012  
Brummell February 2012  

Little black book for the City