Archive for February, 2010

Opulent by design

Wednesday, February 24th, 2010

Gibraltar, a British territory at the southern tip of Spain, is not the first place you would expect to find an exclusive members club, but thanks to the enclave’s status as an offshore haven and a leading financial centre it has one of the highest concentrations of millionaires in Europe.

Plush eleganceGibraltar is a true product of history. Captured by an Anglo-Dutch force during the 18th century Wars of Spanish Succession, it has been a British crown dependency ever since. In this tiny territory, perched upon a spectacular rocky peninsula half an hour west of Marbella, a cosmopolitan population of traders and financiers thrive. Property is at a premium, luxury cars a common sight and in the marinas large yachts lie alongside visiting frigates and cruise ships. Drawn above all by its banking facilities and offshore status, Gibraltar is also home to a community of international millionaires. (more…)

KaDeWe – like a kid in a candy store

Wednesday, February 17th, 2010

You’ve heard of Harrods, Galeries Lafayette and of course GUM in Moscow. While these famous temples of retail are a must-stop on every serious shopper’s Christmas to do list, don’t forget to add Berlin to your itinerary.

KaDeWe - stellar department storeIt may not quite enjoy the celebrity of Harrods or Macy’s, but Berlin’s KaDeWe is one of the world’s great department stores. With a history that dates back to the 19th century and a longstanding tradition for bringing the finest wares from the four corners of the globe to its hallowed marble halls, the Kaufhaus Des Westens is a jewel among retail temples. (more…)

Aleksandr Mostovoi – ‘El Zar’

Wednesday, February 10th, 2010

The footballing world knows Alexander Mostovoi as a skilful attacking midfielder who graced the game for almost two decades, but to Spanish fans he will always be known as ‘El Zar’ – The Czar.

Alexander MostovoiWe met with Aleksandr at a stylish café in Marbella, where he spends part of the year. Now leading a casual family life he enjoys the fruits of his many years at the top of the game, but admits that he would one day like to be actively involved in football again. Relaxed and thoroughly down to earth as he is, Aleksandr still feels a great passion for the sport that took him out of the Soviet Union as a youngster and made him a star. It was a journey that would lead him through Portugal and France to Spain, where he would make his mark and join the European footballing elite. (more…)

Brilliant designs

Tuesday, February 2nd, 2010

Many of the world’s famous brands may come from Paris, Milan and London, but whilst in many cases iconic, much of what they make is actually produced on a considerable scale. For one-off pieces designed and made by master craftsmen, smaller bespoke jewellers are making a welcome comeback. (more…)