back to the list send to a friend print


- 16 Dec 2011
- by
- by

The Top 10 Luxury News Articles for 2011


In analysing the most read news pieces of 2011, our readers showed an interest in everything from gold prices, abandoned supercars in India & New York’s most expensive meal.

Digital media dominated the news in 2010, much like it dominated the luxury industry. Last year the Luxury Society community seemed most focused on big names like Gucci, Marc Jacobs, Burberry, Louis Vuitton and Oscar de la Renta, and what they were doing in social media, tablet applications, fashion films and blogs.

This year reflects a more diverse array of interests, across multiple sectors. Readers were most interested to learn which hotel was named the world’s best at Travel + Leisure’s Annual Best Awards. They were similarly curious to see what MINI and Rolls Royce could each bring to the table, in terms of collaborating on a small concept vehicle. The Swiss watch industry was termed ‘recession proof’, Hermès committed to Miami’s new design district – launching in 2012 – as Burberry was described as the most digitally advanced fashion brand in the world.

And the world’s best hotel is …

According to Travel + Leisure’s Annual Best Awards 2011, the world’s best hotel is Singita Grumeti Reserves in Tanzania, comprised of Sasakwa Lodge, Sabora Tented Camp and Faru Faru Lodge. Travel + Leisure‘s editor, Nancy Novogrod, lauded a return to the top for authentic destinations, highlighting that Singita Grumeti Reserves was just one of six African properties to place within the world’s top ten hotels this year.

“It’s clear that remote and exotic destinations – places that convey a sense of authenticity and adventure – are ruling the day once again in Travel + Leisure’s World’s Best Awards,” she said. "The top ten hotels overall are African camps and lodges; resorts in India; a property in Chiang Mai; and a luxury lodge in Montana.”

Originally published here by Luxuo

Batali’s Del Posto Tops NYC’s Most Expensive Meal List

Explosive dining prices were called into question, following the release of a list of the most expensive prix-fixe menus in New York City, where Mario Batali’s Meatpacking District Del Posto landed on top. The 12-course “Collection” dinner with mandatory wine pairings was listed at $1,269 for two, followed closely by famed sushi restaurant Masa, where food – only – for two, alongside tax and tip was listed at $1,142.

The list coincided with a review by New York Times restaurant critic Sam Sifton, stripping Masa of one of the four stars granted by his predecessor. Sifton described the restaurant as “stupendously expensive,” and opened his review with the question: “Is it worth it?” A sentiment echoed in our Opinions section by Lilian M Raji, when she considered the restaurant for a press dinner for S.T. Dupont, eventually eschewing the location for Gordon Ramsay at The London.

Originally published here by International Business Times

MINI and Rolls-Royce Launch Special-Edition Model

In collaboration with Rolls-Royce Motor Cars design team, the iconic British brand MINI introduced its most luxurious car yet, the MINI Inspired by Goodwood, to the UK market. The $67,000 special-edition model was launched as part of an exclusive MINI YOURS bespoke line.

Overseen by Alan Sheppard, Rolls-Royce’s interiors design chief, the partially handmade MINI boasts cashmere roof lining and deep-pile lambs wool floor mats. The instrument panel and doors are fashioned in a walnut-burr finish unique to Rolls-Royce and selected at the Goodwood factory exclusively for this model. Only one-thousand units will be assembled at the Oxford-based MINI plant starting in March 2012.

Originally published here by Elite Traveler

Hermès to Relocate Miami Store

Hermès is trading the established Bal Harbour Shops for the burgeoning Miami Design District, an 18-square-block area with a hip undercurrent that’s in the throes of gentrification. The move gives Hermès the opportunity to open a 10,000-square-foot two-level flagship in the Design District in fall 2013, more than double the size of its existing 4,500-square-foot unit at the Bal Harbour Shops.

The retailer’s lease expires Dec. 31, 2012. Hermès in January will operate a temporary store in the district until its permanent store is ready. Robert Chavez, president and chief executive officer of Hermès USA, said the move in Miami is as dramatic as Hermès’ 2000 decision to replace a 5,000-square-foot store on East 57th Street with a four-floor 15,000-square-foot flagship on Madison Avenue and 62nd Street.

Originally published here by WWD

Bentleys and Aston Martins abandoned on streets of Delhi

A British businessman and North Korean diplomat have been accused of operating a multi-million scam to sell diplomatic vehicles to India’s rich and famous at cut-price rates by avoiding hefty import duties – duties to the current tune of 60% on luxury European cars and SUVs. After a tax investigation exposed the alleged smuggling operation, nervous members of the super-rich scrambled to avoid arrest by abandoning cars, including Bentleys and Aston Martins on the streets of New Delhi.

More than 40 cars were impounded in a government car park, including Porsche Panamera’s, a Bentley Continental Supersport and several Aston Martin Rapide’s. Until detectives closed in on the alleged smuggling network – which centred on a luxury car dealer and a North Korean and Vietnamese diplomat – they were ‘owned’ by top Bollywood film stars, and a couple of Indian international cricket players.

Originally published here by The Telegraph

How Mulberry made its first billion

The Telegraph asked the question: “How did Mulberry – a leather goods firm that started in a garage near Bath – become one of the world’s most successful fashion labels?” Following the news that the 40-year-old Somerset-based brand, best known for its sturdy leather totes revealed that the company was now worth a billion pounds. Bloomberg reported a 526 per cent increase in Mulberry’s stock at a time when most luxury retailers were happy to simply keep selling anything at all.

The Telegraph credited Emma Hill’s arrival at the helm in 2007 that really took the brand into the stratosphere – in spite of the credit crunch. Hill, who had come from Calvin Klein and Marc Jacobs, and who had previously worked on accessories for Burberry, Gap, Chloé and Temperley, added a sense of whimsy and fun to classic bag shapes and of course, creating the Alexa satchel, in honour of British it-girl Alexa Chung.

Originally published here by The Telegraph

The Recession Proof Swiss Watch

Crisis, what crisis? Even when an economy is falling apart you need to tell the time. The Wall Street Journal went on to reveal that despite the tightening of belts in Greece, as the country prepared for yet another austerity budget, there was no fall in demand in the troubled country for high-end Swiss watches. Swiss watch exports rose 40.1% in real terms in May to 1.64 billion Swiss francs, with almost virtually every market in the world reporting an increase.

Of the top 30 markets for Patek Philippe’s, Rolex’s and Omega watches, only Taiwan reported a dip, according to the figures from the Swiss Watch Industry Federation. But creeping into the top 30 was Greece, in last place, with Swiss watch imports of 6.3 million Swiss francs in May. The figure represented a 6.1% increase from last year. Other troubled members of the countries on Europe’s periphery also reported increases.

Originally published here by Wall Street Journal

Burberry: The Best of British Digital Innovation

2011 was a significant year for Burberry, in establishing themselves not only as a strong fashion brand but also as an innovative media. The first fashion brand to livestream its runway shows, the first to sell live from the catwalk online and in-store via iPad, the one and only brand to attempt a 3D holographic film immersion for its China launch, Burberry was described as the most digitally advanced fashion brand in the world.

In February this year, their autumn/winter 2011 womenswear show was live streamed from Kensington Gardens onto the iconic 32m screen in Piccadilly Circus – an industry first. Over one million people online in more than 185 countries viewed that livestream, while most fashion brands were showing to a few hundred people perched on uncomfortable bench seats in a tent.

Originally published here by Huffington Post UK

Fabergé opens first shop in London since 1915

Fabergé, jeweller to the Russian Imperial court that was shut down following the Bolshevik Revolution, where the family lost the rights to the name. The Fabergé name eventually ended up in the hands of Unilever, who used it as an upmarket perfume and cosmetics brand before eventually selling it to a South African investment company, Pallinghurst Resources.

Under this new ownership it re-launched as a jeweller in 2007, with the new management hiring two of Carl Peter Fabergé’s great-granddaughters as directors. London is its second shop, following one in Geneva two years ago. December’s opening of a London boutique, marks the first time the Fabergé name has been seen in Britain since 1915. Its most expensive product on sale is a yellow diamond ring, with the eye-watering price tag of £1.78 million.

Originally published here by The Telegraph

Gold Prices Could Hit $2,200 an Ounce Within 2 Years

Speaking at a conference in Australia, Mark Cutifani, CEO of AngloGold Ashanti Ltd – the world’s third-largest gold producer – revealed that gold prices could “easily” hit $2,200/ounce within two years. Cutifani revealed that it currently costs $1,200 to produce a single ounce of gold, and that gold prices have risen steadily for the past decade.

2011 has seen the price of the precious metal increase by some 16%, reaching a record $1,923.70/ounce on September 6. In the meantime, AngloGold Ashanti planned to ramp up production to take advantage of the high gold price.

Originally published here by The Israeli Diamond Industry

To see what made headlines within the Luxury Society community in 2010, please see The Top 10 News Articles for 2010


Luxury Society would like to thank all our members and readers for supporting our editorial content in 2011. We very much look forward to brining you more thought-provoking analysis, interviews with industry leaders and again providing a platform for your valuable opinions.

The Luxury Society Team