Sunday, December 31, 2017

World’s Most Expensive Drink

The most expensive tag and diamond go hand in hand. Using diamonds are a sure and simple way to bling a product and jack up its price. A similar example can be seen in the new cocktail that has been dubbed the most expensive drink in Asia. Served in an exclusive club in Asia, the drink carries a price tag of Singapore $32,000 which is equivalent to around US$ 26,000. The news of the launch of the new and expensive drink was reported by Malaysia’s Bernama news agency. In order to acknowledge the diamond in the drink it has been named ‘The Jewel of Pangaea’. And Pangaea is a club in Singapore that attracts the super rich and famous.

World’s Most Expensive Drink

Most Expensive Drink Created Around a Diamond from Mouawad

The exclusive club operates only three nights in a week and all its services are rather expensive. Even for a table the club reportedly charges around US$1600-$12,250. Since the club is catering to people who can afford these prices they have gone ahead and created the most expensive cocktail. The expensive drink has been created by award-winning master bartender Ethan Leslie Leong. He is very much aware of the fact that bartenders around the world create expensive cocktails by throwing in a precious diamond in a martini. Leong wanted to be different and create something special that actually tasted great. He created the drink around a Triple X 1-carat diamond by Switzerland-based jeweler Mouawad.

The Most Expensive Drink Served in London’s Exclusive Club Movida

Leong got the best ingredients for his new creation. The drink has been created by mixing gold-flecked Hennessey brandy, 1985 vintage Krug champagne and sugar. The diamond from Mouawad has been used as a garnish for the drink. The stunning stone has been perfectly complemented by the premium drink. However the most expensive drink recorded so far was served in London’s ultra select club Movida in 2007. It was called ‘Flawless’ and was created with Louis XII cognac, Cristal Rose champagne, brown sugar, angostura bitters, a few flakes of 24-carat edible gold leaf and an 11-carat white diamond ring at the bottom. Served during Christmas the drink was priced at £35,000 (US$56,700).

Monday, April 10, 2017

Most Expensive Face Cream, La Crème

Fighting the ageing process is a losing battle but a large majority of us are always open to new ideas, treatments and cosmetics that promise to halt or slow down the inevitable process. The cosmetic manufacturers are always creating new face creams that promise to keep skin tight and maintain your young looks. These concoctions are generally priced very high but their demand is highly inelastic as the buyers are willing to pay anything for a good product. The largest cosmetics manufacturer of Japan, Shiseido is all set to release the most expensive face cream ever sold. Named “La Crème,” it is a commemorative release to mark the 30thanniversary of “Cle de Peau Beaute.” It is the manufacturer’s most luxurious beauty product line that has established the company right on top in the beauty conscious Japanese market.

Special Cream in a Special Jar

The limited edition face cream will be released on Setember 21. The proposed pricing of the cream has caught the attention of the market. The cream would be five times costlier than gold. A 50 gram jar of the cream would cost the buyer £8,440 which is almost £169 per gram compared to £33 per gram at which gold is trading today. The container for the premium cream has also been designed and created especially for the occasion and is partially responsible for the astronomical price tag. The container is being hand crafted by Crystal Saint-Louis, a specialist glassmaker from France. The container would be made up of 30 layers of crystals and three platinum rungs. Only three jars are planned for the limited edition release. The jar itself could become a collector’s item.

Book Your Jar of La Crème on August 30

Shiseido will start accepting orders for the three jars of La Crème from August 30 at their main store located in the up market Ginza district of Tokyo. It is highly likely that they will receive more than three orders and in that case they will hold a draw to find three winners. Shiseido normally doesn’t make limited edition products but the 30th anniversary of the Cle de Peau Beaute line is a very special occasion that required an equally special and exclusive creation. It is aimed at their large and loyal customer base who are fascinated by gorgeous brands. The company also has plans of releasing the cream in a relatively larger limited edition at a comparatively reasonable price of £627.63. The company also assures its customers of powerful anti ageing properties.

Crème de la Mer by Estee Lauder

Another very popular anti ageing cream is Crème de la Mer which is made and marketed by Estee Lauder and it is positioned as the ‘miracle’ cream. The company claims that the formula for the cream was discovered in the 1970s by NASA scientist Dr Max Huber who created it as a blend of sea kelp with an array of vitamins and minerals, oils of citrus, eucalyptus, wheat germ, alfalfa and sunflower. Estee Lauder bought the rights to the formula from Huber’s daughter after his death. They now sell this potent elixir for £530 for just a 250ml jar. However some beauty experts have questioned the exhorbitant pricing as their experiments show that the ingredients going into a jar of cream does not amount to more than £25.

Most Expensive Hotel Suite in Paris

The luxury hotels prefer to provide an extra special suite in their hotel which is often called the presidential suite or the Royal Suite. The Dorchester Collection’s Hôtel Plaza Athénée in Paris has recently unveiled its Royal Suite which has been refurbished and newly decorated by one of the best known interior designers in France Marie-José Pommereau. The suite has been entirely remodeled but the designer has retained the classic feel by using furniture dating back to the Régence period between 1715 and 1723. The Royal Suite at the Hôtel Plaza Athénée is known as the largest suite in Paris. The suite occupies all of 450 square meters.

Living Room of the Royal Suite

Hotel President Wilson in Geneva has the Most Expensive Suite

The rates of the redecorated Royal Suite start at €20,000 a night, excluding breakfast. And that qualifies it as not only the largest but the most expensive luxury suite in Paris. CNN had published a list of world’s 15 most expensive suits earlier this year. The most expensive suite in the world is the Royal Penthouse Suite at the Hotel President Wilson in Geneva. The 12 room suite sets you back by $65,000 a night. Next on the list is the four-floor Presidential Suite at the Raj Palace Hotel in Jaipur, India. At a starting rate of $45,000 per night the over the top suite features a roof terrace, swimming pool and its own private museum.

One of the Bedrooms of the Royal Suite

The Royal Suite Overlooks the Eiffel Tower

The Royal Suite at Hôtel Plaza Athénée comes in third on the list and boasts of four bedrooms, four bathrooms, two lounges as well as an office and a kitchen space. The suite provides remarkable views as it overlooks the iconic Eiffel Tower. The furniture dating back to the Louis XV and Louis XVI periods have been finished in purple and gold to give it a contemporary look. The bathrooms are fitted with Italian marble sourced from Verona. One of the bathrooms features a steam room and Jacuzzi. The interior designer is the co-founder of the French edition of Architectural Digest and has vast domestic experience.

Monday, July 11, 2016

Christie’s Sells Cullinan Dream, Sets New Record

Back in May, the auction house Christie’s announced the sale of the fancy intense blue diamond called the Cullinan Dream. At 24.18 carats, the diamond was regarded as a rare find. Now, the diamond holds the title as the most expensive fancy intense blue diamond to be sold.

Fetching more than $25 million, the diamond was auctioned at Christie’s on Thursday in New York. Classified as a Type llb diamond, the Cullinan Dream comes from the 122.52-carat rough blue diamond found in the Cullinan Mines of South Africa. The largest of four diamonds to be found, the diamond falls into a rare category that accounts for less than one-half of the 1% of all diamonds found.

Its unique color is the result of small amounts of boron being trapped in the crystal carbon structure during the formation of the diamond. The Cullinan Dream is now set as a cut-cornered rectangular mixed-cut fancy intense blue diamond and is flanked on either side by a tapered baguette-cut diamond. Other well-known diamonds that have been mined from the Cullinan mine include the 3,106-carat rough diamond that is known as the Cullinan Diamond. This rough diamond was then cut into two magnificent gems that now sit on the Imperial State Crown and Sceptre of the British Crown Jewels.

How Much is that Puppy in the Window? $100,000

At $100,000 a head, the puppies frolicking around the fenced lawn in western Seoul don’t come cheap – but at least their owners know exactly what they are getting.

The lawn belongs to the Sooam Biotech Research Foundation, a world leader in pet cloning that has run a thriving commercial business over the past decade catering to dog owners who want to live with their pets forever … literally.

With a client list including princes, celebrities and billionaires, the foundation offers owners protection against loss and grief with a cloning service that promises the perfect replacement for a beloved pet.

Since 2006, the facility has cloned nearly 800 dogs, commissioned by owners or state agencies seeking to replicate their best sniffer and rescue dogs.

“These people have very a strong bond with their pets … and cloning provides a psychological alternative to the traditional method of just letting the pet go and keeping their memory,” said Wang Jae-Woong, a researcher and spokesman for Sooam.

“With cloning, you have a chance to bring back the pets,” he said in the facility’s “care room” where each cloned puppy is kept in a glass-fronted, temperature-controlled pen and monitored by researchers around the clock.

Ever since the milestone birth of Dolly the sheep in 1996, the rights and wrongs of cloning have been a topic of heated debate and Sooam Biotech has been regarded with particular suspicion because of its founder, Hwang Woo-Suk.

In two articles published in the journal Science in 2004 and 2005, Hwang claimed to have derived stem-cell lines from cloned human embryos, a world first.

Fraudulent Hero

He was lauded as a national hero in South Korea before it emerged that his research was fraudulent and riddled with ethical lapses. Hwang was given a two-year suspended prison sentence in 2009, after being convicted of embezzlement and bioethical violations.

Sooam Biotech clones many animals, including cattle and pigs for medical research and breed preservation, but is best known for its commercial dog service.

The process involves harvesting a mature cell from the dog to be copied and transferring its DNA to a donor egg cell that has had its own genetic material removed.

The cell and the egg are “fused” with an electrical jolt, and the resulting embryo is implanted in a surrogate mother dog, which will give birth about two months later.

Despite the $100,000 price tag, requests for the service have poured in from around the world, Wang said — around half from North America.

Some have sought clones of other pets like cats, snakes and even chinchillas, but Wang said the demand for such animals was too small to justify the cost.

Walls around the five-storey Sooam Biotech centre are adorned with dozens of photos of cloned dogs and their smiling owners – tagged with their national flags including the US, Mexico, Dubai, Russia, Japan, China and Germany.

“(The clients) understand that a clone is an identical twin of the original pet, but also has a lot of genetic predispositions and the potential to develop as the original pet,” Wang said.

9/11 Canine Hero

One well publicized cloning was of Trakr, a former police dog hailed as a hero after discovering the last survivor of the 9/11 attack on the World Trade Center. Sooam produced five clones after Trakr’s owner won a contest for the world’s most “clone-worthy” dog.

High profile clients have included Princess Shaikha Latifah of Dubai who cloned her pet dog in 2015 and helped launch a joint research study into cloning camel breeds known for high milk production.

For the most part, the foundation’s clients and financial supporters of Hwang Woo-Suk’s research prefer to remain anonymous.

“Few of our backers – even the most loyal ones – want to voice their support publicly,” said Sooam Biotech’s general manager Kim Hoon, who acknowledged that the scandal involving the facility’s founder had tainted its image.

“I think the only way to win the public’s trust back is making more genuine scientific breakthroughs,” he said. The center does not conduct any human stem cell research after being repeatedly denied state approval to do so.

But it is pushing a number of ambitious projects, most notably an effort to clone an extinct mammoth. Since 2012, Hwang’s team has attempted to cultivate living cells from the frozen remains of mammoths in Siberia.

Disease ‘Models’

For medical research purposes, Sooam Biotech also produces genetically-engineered animals, or “disease models” that are predisposed to Alzheimer’s, diabetes or certain cancers.

During a visit to the clinic by AFP, Hwang himself was leading a procedure to inject the embryo of a Beagle into a surrogate mother dog’s womb. “This dog, once born, has a possibility to become a disease model for human brain tumors,” Hwang said.

Sooam is also involved in a joint venture with Chinese biotechnology firm Boyalife to set up what will be the world’s largest animal cloning factory in the northeastern Chinese port city of Tianjin.

But head researcher Jeong Yeon-Woo said the dog cloning remained his favorite service because of the reaction of owners when they see the puppies. “They look like they found a child that had been missing,” Jeong said. “The moment of pure joy like that … makes me realize again why I’m doing this.”

Utamaro Woodblock Print Sets Auction Record

The Japanese art of woodblock printing has a very long history, with its fair share of masters whose work is in high demand from collectors . One of these masters was Kitagawa Utamaro, an artist nonpareil at the time for his beautiful depictions of women. At a Paris auction, held by the Beaussant Lefevre auction house in association with Christie’s, Utamaro’s sensual skill was brought to the forefront again with an auction of his ‘Deeply Hidden Love’ (Fukaku Shinobu Koi) print. It fetched around 745,000 euros, and went way beyond the initial estimate of 100,000 euros – setting a record for both prints of the Ukiyo-e genre, as well as prints by the artist of course.

Auction of the Portier Collection

The auction held in Paris was focused on Asian art and objects from a collection held by the Portier family – mainly consisting of Japanese earthenware including chawan (tea bowls) and kogo incense boxes. All 90 lots put up were sold after intense bidding, which is an extraordinary result. Some of the other major lots sold included a portrait of actor Tanimura Torazo created by artist Toshusai Sharaku (101,000 euros), and a bust of comedian Iwai Hanshiro by Utagawa Kunimasa (78,680 euros).

“(The Portiers’) expertise has been a reference for the Asian art market for the past four generations,” said the auction house in a statement.

There was also a set of eight exceptional Edo stamps that mainly depicted portraits of actors done by leading artists at the time. Each stamp was acquired by Henri Portier and his son Andre, major figures in the Asian art market in France, in sales at the Drouot auction house over the past century.

Utamaro, Master of Japanese Woodblock Prints

Compared with more popular forms of art like painting, the techniques behind woodblock printing are less known. It was a complicated process that involved three people working in tandem with one another. The artist himself usually only made the initial sketch of the final product, before sending it over to a carver to carve out the block, and a printer to apply inks to the block. Especially troublesome was the fact that each block could only be used for a single color (although some used blocks repeatedly to get special effects). Multiple woodblocks had to be prepared for a single print.

When the whole process worked out, under the conception of a skilled artist, you get the masterful combinations of color and form that characterize the best works in the medium. The powerful contrasts of blues and whites, for example, that blends together, for example, in Hokusai’s ‘The Great Wave Off Kamigawa’. Utamaro, on the other hand, was more focused on using those colors to create a light and idealized form of femininity – and captured subjects like courtesans and Geisha from the Yoshiwara district – or bustling scenes of human life.

The methodology of Japanese woodblock printing has fallen out of favor, especially in view of newer mediums like linocut and lithography (and not to mention digital printing today). Still, the effects and techniques achieved by the Ukiyo-e artists have inspired countless others in the East and West – including great painters such as Van Gogh, most famously. The prints are being perpetuated all over the globe and can gather up new fans over the years. Hopefully, that’ll continue.

Is Cé La Vi Meal World’s Most Expensive?

Have $2,000,000 to spare? Then we have an idea for you, courtesy of World of Diamonds. No, this isn’t just about diamonds although there is a unique diamond ring called the Jane Seymour in the mix. This is an invitation to dinner at Cé La Vi Singapore, to make a meal of said $2 million and have an experience of a lifetime. You might be stupefied by this proposition and we confess that we couldn’t believe our ears when the Russian diamond conglomerate told us about it.

Basically, the experience — for just one lucky couple— begins with an 8-hour retreat. A 45-minute helicopter ride providing an unparalleled view of the Singapore skyline kicks things off. Following that is a chauffeured ride in a Rolls-Royce and a private luxury cruise — the couple doesn’t get to keep either of these things so those of you with a head for figures will still be scratching your head.

Moving along, the journey continues atop the 57th floor of the iconic Marina Bay Sands Hotel, with an 18-course modern Asian menu served as you sit amongst 10,000 fresh roses. The menu is the perfect description for the term “spoilt for choice”. The mouth watering options include Fresh Belon Oyster with Champagene foam, Almas Caviar, Jamón Ibérico, Gewürztraminer-Poaced foie Gras, Veal Liver, Lamb Sweetbread, Bresse Poulet Consommé, Striped Seabass, Air-flown Alaska Wild Salmon, Verjus Sorbet, Slow-cooked Pigeon, Glenvale Pork loin and Apple-wood Grilled Mishima Sirloin. All enjoyed with a pair of diamond-studded chopsticks that are engraved with the couple’s names. So, at this point, there are a couple of chopsticks that the couple gets to keep. Read on and it will all make sense, we promise.

Of course, no meal is complete without a fine selection of vintage wines and here, things are downright incredible because the vintages served are between 44 to 55 years of age. Even the grand armchairs where the couple will be seated are one-of-a-kind, custom-made by The Plush to help it blend in with your home when it is delivered after. Caping things off is the Jane Seymour Vivid Fancy Blue diamond ring, which arrives with dessert. As the vivid blue diamond ring is finally worn, diners can enjoy a glass of Louis XIII cognac as they watch an extravagant fireworks display.

Ok, so now for the final tally then. As Karan Tilani, Director World of Diamonds Group told us, just having the Jane Seymour ring in the mix makes this whole affair ridiculously attractive because the ring alone is easily worth $2 million. This being the case, the dinner is expected to be oversubscribed. Both World of Diamonds and Cé La Vi will select the lucky recipients of the dining experience.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...