Need for Speed

Taking a cue from its parent company, Tudor enters the world of motor sports sponsorship.

BY DAVID A. ROSE

Anyone who knows anything about motor sports will know and appreciate the contribution Rolex has made over the years. Rolex is the official timepiece at the Sebring International Raceway and the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring, official timepiece at The 24 Hours of Le Mans, and title sponsor of the annual Rolex 24 at Daytona. And in 2013, the brand made history when it became the global partner and official timepiece of Formula 1, the pinnacle of motor sports.

51st Rolex 24 at Daytona, Photo By Tom O'Neal Courtesy of Rolex

Rolex also made headlines last year for another reason: the announcement that it would re-launch its storied Tudor brand in the U.S., and promote it as the title partner for the new Tudor United SportsCar Championship.

Hans Wilsdorf, Rolex’s founder, registered the name “The Tudor” in 1926 to honor the Tudor period in England. He established Montres Tudor SA in 1946 with the idea of offering the quality of Rolex timepieces at a lower price. Today, though Tudor is part of the Rolex Group, it is operated separately and continues to uphold its philosophy of affordable luxury.

Tudor Grantour Chrono Fly-Back

To celebrate its colorful history, Tudor has introduced the Heritage Collection, featuring updated versions of iconic pieces like the Tudor Heritage Chrono and the Tudor Heritage Advisor. The Tudor United SportsCar Championship was formed by the merging of two rival U.S. events: the Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series and the American Le Mans Series. The two had been competing for fans, sponsors, teams and drivers since 1999, but as a single series they have now created one of the most exciting sports car races in the world. “For years Tudor has been inspired by motor sports,” says brand manager Russell Kelly. “This new partnership allows us to elevate our commitment to sports car racing. This is the perfect alignment between partners dedicated to performance and precision.” International sports car racing brings together some of the most sophisticated machinery in existence with the best drivers in the world.

Unlike other motor sports races, which run for a specific number of miles or laps, sports car series are run for three, six, 12 and 24 hours. Each car must utilize a minimum of two drivers for the shorter races, and can use up to five drivers per car for 24- hour events. They race in all weather conditions and the pace remains intense throughout the entire event. With the merger of the two series for 2014, there is no doubt that the Tudor United SportsCar Championship will present race fans in North America with the most exciting racing they’ve ever seen, while allowing watch lovers to become reacquainted with the luxury, quality and sophistication of the Tudor brand.

 

2014 TUDOR UNITED SPORTSCAR CHAMPIONSHIP UPCOMING RACE SCHEDULE

May 31 – Detroit Belle Isle
June 7 – Kansas Speedway
June 29 – Watkins Glen International
July 13 – Canadian Tire Motorsports Park
July 25 – Indianapolis Motor Speedway
August 10 – Road America
August 24 – Virginia International Raceway

Tapper's Introduces New Collection by Monica Rich Kosann

Cooler temperatures and brilliant fall foliage paint a beautiful backdrop for Michigan residents who are eager to step out in new and stylish fall fashions. Tapper’s Diamonds & Fine Jewelry in West Bloomfield has introduced a new collection by Monica Rich Kosann, which provides style and on-trend function.

The Monica Rich Kosann collection is designed to offer customers heirlooms for this generation. Kosann’s pieces capture the essence of fashion while maintaining the timeless elegance of design. Her collection strives to help a woman tell her story through her jewelry, while celebrating the memories she creates each day in her life. Also featuring earrings, bangles and beautiful chains, Kosann’s collection is available in 18K gold and sterling silver.

As a fine-art portrait photographer and jewelry and home accessory designer, Monica Rich Kosann has worked for many years with people to integrate their memories and most cherished possessions into their daily lives.

Kosann works with photography clients to integrate her candid images of children and family into the decor of their homes. She encourages clients to frame her photographs as they would any other piece of art. After she began scouring antique shows and flea markets for vintage lockets, cigarette cases and powder compacts that could be adapted to hold family photographs, a new passion was discovered. Kosann since developed her own unique collection of jewelry available exclusively in southeastern Michigan at Tapper’s Diamonds & Fine Jewelry.

Tapper’s offers an exquisite selection of engagement rings, spectacular designer jewelry and luxury timepieces. Tapper’s provides a luxury shopping experience with unparalleled customer service at each of its three metro-area locations in Novi, Troy and West Bloomfield. A multi-generation family-owned business, Tapper’s has been helping its customers Mark the Moment for more than 37 years.

Pearls of Wisdom

AFTER 120 YEARS, MIKIMOTO KNOWS A THING OR TWO ABOUT THESE TIMELESS TREASURES.

Mikimoto, founded by Kokichi Mikimoto in 1893 and known the world over as the leading maker of cultured pearl jewelry, marks its 120th anniversary this year. Among other impressive achievements during the company’s long history, Kokichi was the first to develop a technique for the cultivation of pearls that is still in use to this day. A determined innovator, he succeeded in creating the world’s first perfectly spherical pearl, an object he regarded as nature’s most precious gift to be shared with women everywhere. The timeless elegance found in Mikimoto pearl jewelry has been celebrated and worn by icons of style in every era, from Coco Chanel and Marilyn Monroe to Elizabeth Taylor and Sarah Jessica Parker.

To commemorate more than a century-long commitment to product design, superior craftsmanship and strict quality control, Mikimoto has proudly revealed plans to release three specially designed 120 pearl strand necklaces that embody the company’s traditions. The first design is comprised of 120 Akoya cultured pearls and represents the original pearl that Kokichi cultured in 1893 off the waters of Toba, Japan — a feat that brought him one step closer to fulfilling his dream of bringing the unsurpassed beauty of the pearl to all women. This unique Akoya strand will feature an 18K white gold clasp accented with beautiful royal blue enamel lacquer, crafted by skilled artisans in Japan.

The second design, made of multi-colored Black South Sea cultured pearls, celebrates the breathtakingly rare type of pearl that Kokichi first cultured in 1914, using a new technique that helped Mikimoto expand cultivation into the waters off Australia, Indonesia, the Philippines and Tahiti. The rich, dark colors of the pearls range from slate gray, silver and pistachio to peacock green and midnight black, with overtones of green, rosé or blue.

The third strand consists of 120 multi-colored South Sea and Freshwater pearls and marks Mikimoto’s mid 20th-century expansion into the international market that helped shape the company’s enduring legacy. This necklace is comprised of Golden South Sea, White South Sea, and Pink and Peach Freshwater cultured pearls. Both of these exquisite strands will fasten with a paisley motif version of the iconic Mikimoto clasp, exaggerated in size to accentuate the necklace.

“These 120 pearl strands represent each milestone in our brand’s 120 year history” says Meyer Hoffman, COO of Mikimoto. “Each pearl symbolizes a moment in our past where we’ve taken our founder’s vision to the next level. With this anniversary, we honor the rich legacy that Kokichi left us while looking forward to the future.” These rare and breathtaking pieces will be available in early fall 2013.

Perfect Gems for Spring 2013

EXPERIENCE LIFE’S LITTLE LUXURIES.

BY DONALD CHARLES RICHARDSON

 A STROLL THROUGH HOTEL LA MAMOUNIA

Marrakech has a fascinating history, exotic markets, exciting nightlife and a delightfully opulent hotel. La Mamounia, a former palace celebrated for its mixture of traditional Moroccan and modern French styles, offers intriguing experiences from great art to ice cream. Take a walk through the reception room, lobby and tearoom, where Moroccan paintings and statues inspire. Stop at the Italian Bar to view the latest photography exhibition while sipping a Le Grand Dame Champagne cocktail made with citrus essence. Next, wander outside into the serene 17-acre garden filled with olive and citrus trees, magnificent roses and an extensive kitchen garden (you might chat with the chef as he gathers vegetables for dinner). At the center of the garden is Le Menzeh, an ice cream pavilion that offers pastries and freshly made ice creams. Finally, to recover from your exertions, complete your tour with a Royal Hammam treatment at the lavish spa.

THE NIGHT SPOT

It’s no secret that Broadway singers and actors hate when the curtain comes down and they have to leave the stage. So on Tuesday nights, after the shows are out, performers and the fans who love them gather for Backstage at 54 Below (located in the basement of legendary Studio 54) to keep the music and jokes going over drinks and supper. Led by musical director Brad Simmons and host Susie Mosher, gypsies, Broadway and cabaret stars (and occasionally an audience member) sing or do their routines in this intimate and fashionable 144-seat space created by Tony-winning set designers. The wine list and food are good, the service excellent, the crowd always fun. And you never know who might turn up to perform. End your evening on a high note.

SPIRIT OF THE PAST

Built in 1228 by the Anglo-Norman de Burgos family, Ashford Castle is set on 350 acres with a spectacular backdrop of Irish woodlands, lake and mountains. Sir Benjamin Lee Guinness purchased the estate in 1855 as the family’s country residence. Since becoming a hotel in 1939, the castle has welcomed dignitaries and celebrities including Prince Edward, King George V, Ted Kennedy, Sharon Stone, Brad Pitt and Barbra Streisand. The castle offers contemporary comforts and conveniences, but naturally, oldworld traditions still thrive. There’s Ireland’s first school of falconry, a decanter of sherry in each room, and tea served in the drawing room. And in keeping with conventional castle ambiance, there’s also a ghost, reportedly from the 19th century when the Guinnesses were in residence. Not to worry: guests who’ve seen the young female apparition say she’s friendly.

LIGHT FOOTED

This spring, let your feet shine with bright bejeweled footwear by Ivy Kirzhner, featuring cloisonné metal work and exotic leathers. The 2013 collection includes the Ark, a dress wedge with crystals and snake leather inlays on an 18K gold-plated heel. The Taj Mahal gladiator sandal features gold silk metallic leather with crystals. Nefertiti is an ornamental high wedge with 18K gold-plated hardware and hand enameled cloisonné treatment. Pictured above are the Montezuma Deco-bejeweled slippers in royal blue and hot coral kid suede and gold silk metallic, and the Tresor, a Deco ballet flat in gold silk metallic and opal, both with crystals on an 18K gold-plated hardware ornament. Step into a brilliant summer.

CONCERT GRAND

Steinway Lyngdorf is a collaboration between Steinway & Sons, makers of the world’s finest pianos, and audio innovator Peter Lyngdorf. Their speaker systems range from the invisible to the compact to the giant. Currently, the state-of-theart choice is the Model LS Concert. Combined with the SP-1 Stereo Processor or P-1 Surround Sound Processor and Steinway Lyngdorf’s fully digital amplifiers, it’s perfect for luxurious home theaters. The open-baffle design makes the speaker interact with the room much as a musical instrument would, resulting in extremely open and life-like musicality. There’s also a remarkable remote that weighs nearly 2.2 pounds, with a rotating wheel crafted from solid, gold-plated brass and mounted on precision-machined Swiss bearings, providing intuitive and total command of the system.

Asian Fusion

EASTERN ELEMENTS INSPIRE MODERN AMERICAN STYLE.

BY LORRAINE DEPASQUE

While shopping for your wardrobe this season, have you noticed that many of the most fashion-forward styles contain elements of Eastern cultures? Influences from Japan are particularly prevalent, like pleated origami-inspired organdy cotton, wingshaped shoulders, and wide pants, among others. It’s a trend that will continue into fall and winter, with floral jacquards from Vera Wang, Eastern spiritual styling from Prada, and brushstrokes of color from Lela Rose.

And what jewelry do these Asian-infused fashions beg for? Pieces with a decidedly Eastern edge, of course. “These clothes are the perfect canvases, so to speak, for jewelry,” says David Wolfe, creative director of the Doneger Group in New York City. “Unlike what we saw before this year, the new fashions aren’t heavily embellished.” Wolfe, one of fashion’s leading international forecasters, adds that with these modern Eastern-inspired clothes, “The lines and the shades provide the color, if you will. And with this new sophisticated simplicity of extreme structures and curvilinear cuts, a strong jewelry statement becomes very important.”

GO EAST WITH YOUR JEWELRY
Some of the best fine jewelry brands are making accessorizing à la the Asian aesthetic easy to do this year, by incorporating one or several of the following elements:

GEMS: Certain stones “say” Eastern, especially jade (in all colors), red coral, black onyx, pearls, mother-of-pearl, emerald and ruby.

MATERIALS: Enamel and lacquer, materials used in original Far Eastern jewelry, are significant, and today “new Eastern” collections sometimes rely on colored resins and ceramics to impart that same bold mien.

TECHNIQUES: Filigree and mokume-gane bring Eastern cultures to mind. The openwork of filigree can invoke the idea of Chinese calligraphy, while the ancient Japanese metalworking art of mokume-gane is a process used by specially trained artisans for one-of-a-kind jewelry.

THEMES: Art Nouveau-like motifs are characteristic of Eastern jewelry, especially dragonflies and butterflies, plus flowers and plants like cherry blossoms, bamboo, lotus and peonies. Spiritual symbolism abounds: the Om, the Tree of Life and certain mythological creatures, such as dragons. And all 12 animal signs of the Chinese zodiac are definitely key.

2013 is The Year of the Snake on the Chinese
calendar, so new jewelry focused on those writhing reptiles is everywhere. The ancient Chinese culture viewed snakes as a positive omen, symbolic of eternal love, wisdom, immortality and so on. Today, contemporary luxury brands are fashioning serpentine-style jewelry whichever way you want it: replete with demonic details like a long tongue and menacing eyes, or in more stylized versions merely hinting at a snake via their super-curvy shapes, often inlaid or prong-set with precious gems. Whether you choose a snake-y style this year, or pieces with a feminine Art Nouveau-like beauty, heading toward the exotic East will surely lead you in the right direction!

IMAGES COURTESY OF ROBERTO COIN, JUST JULES.

Having it All

WHY SACRIFICE INTIMACY FOR VARIETY WHEN YOU CAN HAVE BOTH?

BY LENORE RICH


I adore the warmth and sophistication of a small ship (why should I dine with thousands?) yet hate to forego the myriad activities of a large one. Wanting both options, and unsure if I’d be craving a burger bar or a sushi bar, a pomegranate martini or a double chocolate milkshake, I set out to discover a “luxurious and healthful small ship experience” aboard a mega-ship. Just to be safe, I booked two one-week cruises aboard Celebrity’s award-winning Solstice Class ships, each easily housing 2,850 passengers  and touted by Frommer’s as “the most fragrantly beautiful mega-ships ever built.” Venues include a spa (with treatments like bamboo massage, acupuncture, Botox and 14K gold facials), a fitness center with spectacular water views, and state-of-the-art theaters (one equipped for cirque-type aerialists). Lounge options include a martini bar with frosted counters and a molecular bar tended by lab coat-wearing mixologists who create tantalizing, smoking concoctions with liquid nitrogen. Consider the Lawn Club, a half-acre of real grass on which you can play bocce, hone your putting skills, sunbathe, picnic or sip chardonnay under the stars. And—to satisfy the newly emerging cruise demographic of 30 to 50 year olds—a fabulous nightclub.

[Read more…]

Diamond Drams

MAKE YOUR NEXT COCKTAIL WITH THESE JEWELRY-THEMED LIQUORS.

BY ROBERT HAYNES-PETERSON

Vodka is often passed through charcoal during the distillation process to remove impurities and enhance smoothness. What is charcoal but unfinished diamonds? As a result, many brands are opting for swankier
filtration methods. Russian Diamond runs its vodka through quartz, “coconut” charcoal and crushed diamonds, while the new organic (and kosher) Croatian vodka Akvinta filters its elixir five times, through charcoal, marble, silver, gold and platinum. [Read more…]

The Lady is a Champ

JANET GUTHRIE, ROLE MODEL EXTRAORDINAIRE

BY DAVID A. ROSE

Women’s liberation was barely a pipedream when a little-known young woman fulfilled a dream of her own. Pilot, flight instructor, aerospace engineer, technical editor and PR rep for some of America’s big corporations, Janet Guthrie became the first woman to compete at both the Indianapolis 500 and the Daytona 500 (where she was Rookie of the Year in 1977). Here, in an exclusive interview, she speaks with Accent magazine about speed, style and life without jewelry.

How does a nice young girl from Miss Harris’s Florida School for Girls find herself flying around the Indianapolis Motor Speedway?

I was always adventurous. I was always riding my bicycle improbable distances; I made a parachute jump and soloed an airplane at age 16, got my private pilot license at 17 and my commercial and flight instructor license by the time I finished college. I guess you could say flying was my first love. When I graduated college with a physics degree, I went to work as an engineer in the aerospace industry. I needed a car so I bought a 1953 Jaguar XK 120 Coupe, just because it was beautiful. Then I found out what I could do with it! Besides the pleasure of exercising sohisticated machinery, racing added the element of door handle-to-door handle competition. That was a very compelling combination and I got hooked. [Read more…]

Culinary Class

IT’S A LOT MORE THAN COOKING…

BY DONALD CHARLES RICHARDSON

On a quiet afternoon, an American tourist wandering around a shop in Rome struck up a conversation with the young woman behind the counter. After chatting for a few minutes, the saleswoman looked curiously at the customer, then leaned forward and confidentially asked why the visitor was shopping instead of sightseeing. “After all,” she whispered, “you have everything in the U.S.”

It’s true that finding things to bring home is becoming increasingly difficult. Every fashion house in the world is represented in the U.S., and American jewelry shops not only have a full range of pieces created in America, but an elaborate and extensive collection of European designs as well. That leaves T-shirts, baseball caps and coffee mugs. Do you really need another one? [Read more…]

Sensational Ceramics

FROM MUD TO MARVELS

By JACQUELIN CARNEGIE

Forget candy dishes and coffee mugs: today’s potters are creating museum-quality work. These artists in particular—Sara Flynn, Frances Lambe and Nuala O’Donovan in Ireland; Felicity Aylieff in England; and Daphne Corregan, an American in France—are producing pieces of “material poetry.” [Read more…]