Here we go, don't know what to get your billionaire boyfriend this holiday season? We do, it's the Derek Rose dressing gown known to the joe-shmoes of the world as a robe. Now this is no ordinary robe, it is a luxurious splurge for those of you that can still afford to splurge. Selfridges department store is unapologetically catering to the ultra-affluent people of the world with items like the Derek Rose dressing gown. For a cool $22,290, the robe is the priciest bed gear known to man. Why you ask, does a robe cost $22k? It's called Vicuna wool, one of the most exquisite and rarest types of wool in the world. A Vicuna is cousin to the Llama but produces much less but extremely fine wool. A Vicuna is an endangered species that now lives only in captivity in the Peruvian highlands and the animal can only be shorn every two years. Just think your man could wear it all Christmas day, heck he might wear it everyday to get his money's worth. Then again, if you're buying the Derek Rose dressing gown in the first place, money is obviously no object. He will probably wear it once or twice and then lose it in the closet but it's still a good idea for the man who already has everything!
The oh-so-popular Victoria's Secret Fashion Show is almost here and by here, we mean next week in Miami Beach (our hometown!). The 2008 sexed-up show will broadcast from the revamped Fontainebleau Hotel in Miami Beach. The Fontainebleau Hotel is one of the most legendary and architecturally stunning hotels on the Beach. Built in 1954, and originally designed by Morris Lapidus, the Fontainebleau was hailed as one of the most luxurious of its time. Â
The Fontainebleau Miami Beach sits oceanfront at 4441 Collins Avenue, the hotel was purchased in 2006 by the restored Fontainebleau Resorts Firm.Â Fontainebleau Resorts then set out to give the hotel a $1 billion dollar facelift over the next two years, taking vigilant care to preserve the circa 1950's design elements like the famous "staircase to nowhere." The renovated Fontainebleau will debut with a 40,000 square foot spa, two brand new towers (Chateau and Versailles), 15,000 rooms, 11 restaurants and lounges, three nightclubs and an oceanfront "poolscape" with several pools. Plus, iMac computers in the ritzier rooms. If that wasn't specific enough for you and you're into name dropping, then here you go... Just to name a few,Â the Fountainebleau will feature: Gotham Steakhouse, Sprezza Italian restaurant, Hakkasan a Cantonese restaurant, LIV Nightclub, Blade Sushi bar and Glow the Pool Bar. Fun factoid, President electÂ Barack Obama also stayed at the Fontainbleau Miami Beach on a recent campaign tour of South Florida.Â
The remodeled and refashioned hotel brings us back to models and fashion. The Fontainebleau Hotel's behemoth grand opening will be kicked off by the Victoria's Secret Fashion Show on November 14. A virgin to Miami Beach, the famed lingerie runway show will be taped and broadcast by CBS for the sixth year in a row. The show will air on Wednesday, December 3 at 10:00 - 11:00 P.M ET/PT on CBS for all those not in attendance for the actual show, which was by invite exclusively.
We look forward to seeing Victoria's Secret supermodels Heidi Klum, Adriana Lima, Marisa Miller, Miranda Kerr (also on this months issue of OceanDrive Magazine) and an army of other seductive Angels. Plus, Miami Beach will be flocking with celebs and games of whose who. Television audiences will get to see musical performances, red carpet interviews, model profiles and a behind-the-scenes look at the making of one of the world's most eminent fashion shows a.k.a a totally commercialized circus. Past musical performances have been the Spice Girls, Justin Timberlake, Seal, Sting, and Mary J. Blige. This year Usher is rumored to be the main musical guest performance. Here's to hoping the $1 bill Fontainebleau Hotel Miami Beach looks as hot as the supermodels. We are keeping our fingers crossed and we will be there to keep you posted, you know you're totally jealous!
Haven't heard of the Yamu yet? Shame on you. The Yamu is a five-star hotel being built and designed by the General Hotel Management (GHM) company. If you aren't familiar with GHM projects then we don't know what rock you live under, this company has some of the most outrageous hotels and resorts around the globe. The Setai Hotel on Miami Beach, Florida is the first in America and may give you some bearing on just how insane their establishments are. The Yamu Hotel is on a private peninsula of Phuket's east coast and will raise the bar on previously held notions of privacy, tranquility and luxury.
There is always some anticipation when hotels of this calibre are set to open but the Yamu is highly anticipated. Hopefully the names Zecha, Gathy and Starck mean something to you. The world renown trio went into collaboration on this project in Phuket. Industry guru Adrian Zecha chairman and director of GHM Hotels and Aman Resorts, acclaimed architect Jean-Michel Gathy and French interior designer Philippe Starck are creating a hotel that is magnificent, we don't have words.
The Yamu Hotel will not encroach on surrounding natural beauty, thanks to the architectural genius of Jena-Michel Gathy. In keeping true to Thai spirit, Gathy constructed large outdoor living rooms, interconnected open rooms, and functionality between indoor and outdoor spaces. He accomplished his goal of intensifying natural beauty without disrupting existing nature.
The interior 63 rooms overlook the limestone islands of the Andaman Sea. Interior designer Philippe Starck has also taken design cues from surrounding nature. Again he has created stunning accents and opulence that are of another world. Best known for being startling and sumptuous, the Yamu will still be inviting in an elegant yet casual fashion as only Starck can do. We are convinced that the Yamu Hotel, graceful, sophisticated and timeless will breathe new meaning into the word vacation.
Not to mention featured facilities galore. The Yamu has a stunning 160-person restaurant that will serve Thai, Western, and Chinese influenced cuisine. A to die for spa and 100 metre swimming pool. Oh and, five glass cubes within the estate that will serve as a wine room with wine cave below, a cigar lounge, a chocolate room, a private kitchen and a designer boutique.
Around the hotel will be 12 privately owned Villa Estates, operated as part of the hotel when owners are away. Each villa will have master pavilion with a lounge, a master bedroom, kitchen and maids' quarters. Plus, a 23.5-metre swimming pool, garden and outdoor showers. The Club Complex at the Yamu boasts personal butlers, unsurpassed privacy, and convenient access to facilities, achieving the ultimate luxurious vacation environment.
The Hotel, the Villa Estates and Club Complex, are infused with the visionary intellect of Gathy and Starck to achieve an extremely rare synergy of style and than run by the best. The chic Yamu Hotel doors will open next Summer, 2009. Private investment opportunities are available for sale, we recommend you hustle to. We are booking like tomorrow!
If luxury is all you crave then the Continuum on South Beach is the place for you. The Continuum residencies, located in the chic South of Fifth (SOFI) neighborhood, are resort style living developments on some seriously desired beach front property. There are two towers built by the legendary Ian Bruce Eichner. The South which was completed in 2002 and the North which was first launched in 2004. The 37-story, 193-unit, North Tower was completed just last year and remains our love on the beach.
Floor plans range from 1,200 square-foot one-bedrooms to 4,000-square-foot four-bedroom residencies, to a 7,000 square foot penthouse with movie theatre. Unit ceilings are grand, notions of exclusivity are felt and the classiness, simplicity and space can't be overlooked. The Sales for the North tower are projected beyond $355 million.
Besides the private white sand beach right outside your door, there is a full service beach club with furniture and cabanas. Swim in the enormous lagoon shaped pools, play tennis on one of three har-tru courts, or take lunch on The Patio with to die for tuna tartare. Outdoor amenities alone wouldn't cut it, thank god the Continuum offers a 20,000 foot state of the art fitness center and spa. Get a private trainer, take a plethora of exercise classes, then hit up the ucalyptus steam room, redwood sauna, heated whirlpool, or coldplunge. Better yet, get a message or any spa treatment in the blink of an eye. Relax by the rooftop infinity pool and sundeck, and take in the unobstructed Miami Beach views.
In short the Continuum has some serious amenities and modern living quarters. To live as on constant vacation is the primary goal and the Continuuum Residencies surpass, every moron out should only be so lucky.
Wednesday night the 24th of September it poured rain on Miami Beach. We blogged about the Miami Fall Fashion Week begining on Monday, but there was not much to be excited for until Wednesday nights Escada Show.Â The Escada show was meant to be an outdoor lounge event (where we saw the Chloe Summer show) at the Setai Hotel. However, on account of the rain the entire event was haphazardly moved into the hotel's lobby. Rain is unfortunate but in Miami Beach in September, it rains every 5 minutes and Ocean Drive should have been prepared.
As we walked up to the Setai Hotel a crowd of people were pushing to get past the velvet ropes. Literally pushing, some man who apparently works for a top level media out on Miami Beach, threw a hissy fit/ tantrum trying to get in. There aren't even words to describe how rude or grotesquely embarrassing he was and it was totally unprofessional. Get yourself together man!
Normally members of the media are ushered right into events but last night amid the drama and chaos, we had to wait outside for about 10 minutes. That wasn't even bad compared to most people who had been waiting for an hour in the rain. Then were turned away on account of the fire marshall. The scene was a mess and a half.
Once in the lobby it didn't get much better, no one could move and it felt like a million degrees inside. The bar was a mess with bowls of olives and nuts spilled all over. The show was hosted by Orzel Vodka but there was no open bar, which came off cheap and tacky. We ran into the Orzel key account manager Nes Rueda and he didn't have anything to say about it. No one knew the fashion show had even started because of the mob scene. Instead of an actual runway show, the models were sent to walk around, pause and pose for a few moments. What we did get to see of the '08 Escada Fall Collection we liked. The long dresses were goddess-like and sophisticated and the separates were mature, yet sexy. It was such a shame that it had to rain and Ocean Drive didn't have a suitable plan B.
On a nicer note, we spotted an attending guest wearing a full feather bolero jacket and out of curiosity asked her who she was wearing. She told us it was designed by her friend Carolina Fernandez. We were immediately introduced to Fernandez and found out that she's a new designer just moved down from Manhattan. Carolina Fernandez began doing fur designs not too long ago and has slowly been expanding into other animal mediums, grrrr! Fernandez's line is called Cariox and we are hoping for a sneak peak of her showroom designs immediately. She was adorable and has been in the industry for at least a decade.
We were handed an Escada gift bag that included the new Ocean Drive Mag, an Orzel beer bottle opener and a gift card for 10% off a Setai Hotel Spa service. Yawn! We left after an hour and there you have the highlights and low points ofÂ last nights Escada show. Ya'll stay tuned for the Perry Ellis show experience tomorrow night, should be amusing...
Luxury Travel Expo is the most prominent and authoritative luxury event in North America. This year it will be the Expo's tenth anniversary. Luxury Travel Expo remains to be the only travel event soley loyal to luxury. The Expo provides suppliers and agents with a vast luxury forum with meaningful knowledge and networking opportunities.
The Expo will be in Las Vegas from December 2nd through the 5th. The whole thing is put tgether by Luxury Travel Advisor, Travel Agent magazine and Premier Hotels & Resorts. The Luxury Travel Expo has been so successful because of careful attention to an education program, knowledgeable speakers and ample exhibitors. Below is what the first days schedule looks like and we will keep you posted as more updates surface.
8:00AM -Â 6:00PM Â Â Â
8:30AM -Â 12:00PM Â Â Â
Test for your CTA, CTC and CTIE designations
12:00PM -Â 3:00PM Â Â Â
CLIAâ€™s Customer Relations Management
Speaker: Â Â Â Bernie Blomquist, MCC, CTC, Manager of Training Development, CLIA
Want to create the ultimate, top-notch customer service model for your agency?
12:15PM -Â 1:30PM Â Â Â
Creating Buzz for Your Business: Hot Viral Marketing
Speaker: Â Â Â Bruce Tepper, CITE, CTC, Vice President, Joselyn, Tepper & Associates, Inc.
Buzz Marketing, a.k.a. Viral Marketing, is today's hottest marketing technique. Have a creative flair but a limited budget?
12:30PM -Â 7:00PM Â Â Â
The Travel Institute Conference: Additional Conference Registration required
1:45PM -Â 3:15PM Â Â Â
Aloha! Discover the Islands of Pampering Luxury, by Hawaii Visitors and Convention Bureau
Speaker: Â Â Â Stacey Alford, CTC, Director of Travel Industry Sales, Oahu Visitors Bureau
Robyn Basso, Regional Director of Travel Trade Marketing, Hawaii Visitors and Convention Bureau
Maile Horner, Director of Marketing, Kauai Visitors Bureau
Deanna Isbister, Director of Sales, Big Island Visitors Bureau
Chris Kai'aokamalie, Director of Sales, Maui Visitors Bureau
Julie Zadeh, CTC, Managing Director of Travel Trade Marketing, Hawaii Visitors and Convention Bureau
We invite you to explore the islandsâ€™ hidden gems, cultural experiences, luxurious hotels, and unique activities and attractions, along with the welcoming Aloha spirit.
2:00PM -Â 3:00PM Â Â Â
25 Top Strategies for Selling Niche Cruises
Speaker: Â Â Â Larry Dessler, CTC, Executive Director, Niche Marketing Cruise Alliance
Charles Robertson, President and CEO, American Cruise Lines
Jamie Sales, Managing Director and Co-owner, Uncommon Cruises
Karen Wiseman, Vice President of Marketing, Orion Expedition Line
How can you pamper your clients with intimate niche cruise products?
3:30PM -Â 4:30PM Â Â Â
ID Card - Going, Going, Gone? By IATA
Speaker: Â Â Â Humberto E. Rivero, Regional Director of the Americas, IATA
3:30PM -Â 4:30PM Â Â Â
Yokoso! Japan Welcomes You to the Land of Hospitality by the Visit Japan Campaign
3:30PM -Â 6:30PM Â Â Â
CLIAâ€™s Self Assessment: Explore Your Abilities, Skills and Strengths
Speaker: Â Â Â Dr. Marc Mancini, President, Marc Mancini Seminars and Consulting
"Know Thyself." Knowing your strengths, overcoming your weaknesses and applying the lessons youâ€™ve learned from self-discovery.
Upon completion this Spring the new, lavish W Hotel will be the most outrageous space on Miami Beach.Â Mark our words, when the W Hotel opens on March 1, 2009 it will be an awakening, great for the tourists and sad for the competing hotels. The W's high brand name, along with Startwood Hotel's experience, attention to glam and impeccable service will result in one of the most fabulous hotel to hit Collins Avenue.Â The sales office is to die for and the architectural models look bananas, the project is coming along on schedule and reservations will be taken as early as December for the March opening.Â All 395 rooms will have Atlantic Ocean views thanks to some serious architectural prowess.
Those who didn't buy in the W will have to wait for re-sales (if there are any) because the building is sold out. The W Hotel & Residencies is in the heart of South beach on prime, prime real estate but we wouldn't expect less from the 5 star powerhouse. Dine at the chic Mr. Chow or Serafina Restaurants, pamper yourself at BlissÂ® Spa, bask in the Living Room on the Ocean or play in the WETÂ® pool.
Some of the most fabulous celebrities and wealthiest jetsetters will reside in the Penthouses and bungalows, which feature the best of resort living.Â Live luxuriously from the signature W bed to fully wired technology and the fabulously notorious Whatever/WheneverÂ® service. Each room is furnished to the nines.Â Owners are offered a W package of fine glass wear, silver wear and a few other nicks and knacks for almost $20,000, the point is that no cost is too steep. Experience state-of-the-art aesthetics and rich comfort in the W Hotel, coming soon.
Calling all World Class Jet-setters to Miami Beach. Socialites already know that Miami Beach is the scene to be seen in every winter, Miami is the only island-city in the country with warm winters, a pulse of change, poise, enlightenment and elite lifestyles. With white sand beaches, the upscale Bal Harbour Shops, and a vibrant nightlife it is no surprise that the glamorous Miami Beach locale has been chosen to debut Haute Miami.Â Haute Miami is the first ever uber-luxe exhibit of its kind in the United States and will debut from January 8th - 11th, 2009. Â
Haute Miami has an expansive, high class roster of 160 renowned, international exhibitors featuring contemporary and classic fashion, jewelry, art, design, exotic yachts, airplanes, personal helicopters, new technology in many forms, and an emphasis on "going green" including solar powered vehicles, Haute Miami is certain to awe even the luxury spoiled, savvy Miami Beach locals. Haute Miami will be in the Miami Beach Convention Center and will run concurrently with SeaFair.Â SeaFair is a private megayacht that will be part of the Haute Miami expo, it will host a selection of invitation-only events.Â Â At 228 feet, SeaFair, is the 4th largest private American Luxury Yacht in the Country and that deserves some good old fashioned American patriotism ya'll.
The venue will host 28 auxiliary exhibitors in private galleries and features a gourmet restaurant, champagne/caviar lounge and a spacious sky deck. SeaFair will be docked on Millionaireâ€™s Row and can be accessed by shuttles from the Convention Center.Â The custom built $40M exposition vessel will serve as a networking hub and private venue for many of Haute Miamiâ€™s most exclusive events.Â Haute Miami imitates successful luxury fairs from Europe and Asia and will bring new buzz and glamour to the famed winter season in Miami Beach.Â To align with Miami's chilled out atmosphere, Haute Miami at the Convention Center will offer extended hours operating Wednesday â€“ Saturday evenings until 11PM and will feature nighttime events.
â€œHaute Miami and SeaFair both represent entirely new paradigms in American fairs.Â Both will be fabulous new luxury lifestyle events for even the most sophisticated visitors,â€ said David Lester founder of this exposition. â€œWe look forward to welcoming discerning, local and international attendees to our extraordinary, new event in January." We can barely wait!Â Stay with us for up to the minute updates about Haute Miami.