1. WE WENT OFF-ROADING WITH THE ROLLS-ROYCE CULLINAN IN SCOTLAND
AKLC COMMENT(S): Named after the Cullinan diamond, the largest gem quality rough diamond ever discovered, the Rolls-Royce Cullinan’s advanced technology can handle difficult terrains in all weathers with ease.
When you think of a Rolls-Royce, what comes to mind? Probably the words luxury, elegant and chauffeur driven – not necessarily in that order but, we’re almost certain off-roading isn’t one of them. Unless you’ve met the Cullinan that is.
We were given the privilege to experience the beast that is an unassuming SUV. A tag Rolls-Royce might never have been associated with, but stick with us before you zoom off – you’re in for a bumpy ride. Fear not, it’s installed with great suspension.
While most sport-utility-vehicles really do what they say on the tin; built to be off-road, amongst the mud, dogs in-toe and generally not family friendly, the Cullinan, however, disrupts the market. Albeit the most expensive SUV of its kind, it’s equally the most opulent. Submerged in luxurious touches from built-in massage seats in the rear, a boot installed with picnic chairs, and a hidden champagne cooler in the armrest, the list really does go on…and it’s not slowing down either.
2. Gucci introduces AR technology for its Ace sneakers
AKLC COMMENT(S): Gucci is stepping up its game by combining new age technology and design to make customer experience easy.
Italian fashion house Gucci has joined a growing number of fashion brands and retailers that use Augmented Reality (AR) to help potential customers when making their purchasing decisions. Last week, Gucci and technology partner Wannaby added an AR feature to the Gucci App to allow customers to try on the popular Ace sneaker.
“The technology will allow Gucci to present the newest models to its fans, provide an engaging experience and an opportunity to interact with upcoming shoe collections that are only scheduled for release,” announced the fashion house in a press release published on Wednesday.
3.Why couture is at the cutting-edge of sustainable fashion
AKLC COMMENT(S): Couture is taking a step towards sustainable living!
Couture is the antithesis of ready-to-wear: one-off pieces rather than mass-produced; timeless rather than trend-led. Arguably, this makes it inherently more sustainable. “We only do two collections a year [instead of] six,” Ronald van der Kemp tells Vogue. “Couture pieces are collectibles, pieces of art; they’re timeless.” Fellow designer Iris van Herpen adds: “You’re not creating in the hope that somebody will wear it; you’re creating [on] demand.”
4. India raises import duties on gold, other precious metals
AKLC COMMENT(S): A boon or a bane?
India has raised the import duties on gold and other precious metals to 12.5% from 10%, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said in her first federal budget speech on Friday, which may boost smuggling in the world’s second-biggest bullion consumer.
Shares of jewellery makers such as Titan and PC Jeweller fell as much as 5% after the announcement.
Jewellery trade associations have asked India’s government to reduce gold import duties, which has caused a surge in smuggling.
India, which vies with China as the world’s top gold consumer, raised import taxes on the metal to 10% in a series of hikes to August 2013 as policymakers attempted to narrow a gaping current account deficit and arrest a decline in the rupee.
5. Fendi dazzles with new materials in Roman Forum
AKLC COMMENT(S): Everytime you come to Fendi, you need to be amazed!! Gorgeous & simply brilliant!
Fendi feted its Rome origins on Thursday night in an ancient temple, with a collection inspired by the very stones and mosaics on which the house’s well-heeled guests walked.
From intarsia shaved mink coats inspired by ornate Roman marble and porphyry floors, to stunning capes finished with cashmere printed like seriated marble, half the looks echoed ancient building materials.
6. Indian Hotels Company plans 10 more Taj-branded luxury hotels by 2020
AKLC COMMENT(S): Looking forward to luxurious holidaying!
Indian Hotels Company (IHCL), which runs India’s largest home-grown hotel chain the Taj Group of Hotels, may harbour grand plans for its mid-market brand Ginger but the company has no intention of giving up what it knows and does best — luxury hotels across major metros and resort cities.
IHCL Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Puneet Chhatwal said by 2020, the company would open 10 new luxury hotels in Ahmedabad, Chennai, Darjeeling, Gangtok, Goa, Alwar (Rajasthan), Tirupati, Wayanad (Kerala), and two locations in Dubai (The Palm and Jumeirah Lake Towers). Currently, IHCL …
7. Glamping safaris, romantic spa getaways: The curious Indian traveller wants more luxe vacays
AKLC COMMENT(S): Affordable Luxury-There is a travel plan that can be tailor-made for any and every occasion.
What does the word luxury mean to you? To most, it means extravagance that can bring comfort and extremely lavish experiences. To some professionals, it may mean moving to faraway lands away from the maddening crowds.
To rejuvenate with unique spa choices and gain great lifestyle insights. To many others, it may mean travelling with their loved one and also connecting with a whole new world by transcending borders and races.
8. Haute Couture Fashion Week: Tech and sustainability get a luxury makeover
AKLC COMMENT(S): Sustainability is here to stay!
In many ways, Haute Couture Fashion Week in Paris feels like a bubble full of embroidery, feathers and acres of tulle ruffles, a showcase of incredible handmade designs that could sell well north of $100,000.
However, at the Autumn-Winter 2019 shows, though the focus remained very much on offering escapism through exquisite fabrics and elaborate craftsmanship, some couturiers also provided touches of realism. At a time when consumers are increasingly conscious of the impact the fashion industry has on the environment, many couturiers are keen to highlight how craftsmanship can elevate upcycling to new heights.
9. AUTUMN-WINTER 2019-2020 HAUTE COUTURE SHOW
AKLC COMMENT(S):: Stunning, Gorgeous!
Questioning the form and function of clothing, the architect Bernard Rudofsky’s reflections inspired Maria Grazia Chiuri’s new conceptual vision of Haute Couture as an art destined to dress bodies that are always unique and invested with a singular identity.
10. You Can Soon Get Lady Gaga Level Glammed
AKLC COMMENT(S): Something to have in common with your favourite pop stars!
A pop sensation launching their own luxury label is gradually growing to be a thing. There was Rihanna who recently introduced her inclusive fashion brand, Fenty, and soon after, Lady Gaga took to Instagram to announce the upcoming launch of her own beauty line, Haus Laboratories. The singer will be releasing her brand exclusively through Amazon. The online retail giant will ensure that Gaga’s first business venture will be available on a global level from the get go.
11. Swiss luxury watchmaker Blancpain’s formula for success
AKLC COMMENT(S): An insider look at one of the best luxury watchmaker’s story!
Innovation might not be the first thing to cross one’s mind when thinking of the world’s oldest registered watch brand. Heritage, history and tradition seem better suited for a company that’s existed for almost 300 years, but Blancpain has never believed innovation to be the exclusive territory of the young and modern.
“Some are prisoners of their roots, while others believe they can innovate without any knowledge of their origins,” says Blancpain President and CEO Marc A. Hayek. “At Blancpain, there is no such ambiguity: we cultivate a profound respect for the essential tradition of watchmaking, which is precisely that of constant innovation.”
That’s because every day, in the villages of Le Sentier and Le Brassus, where Blancpain stations its workshops, its watchmakers ask themselves if a complication can be made smaller, a movement thinner, a power reserve longer, or adjustments more convenient.
12. IS INDIA THE NEXT BIG GLOBAL BEAUTY MARKET?
AKLC COMMENT(S): Beauty market making it’s way to the top in the Indian market!
The first product that Nykaa.com sold on its website was a Maybelline lipstick. Since that first transaction in 2012, the Indian beauty e-tailer’s revenues have reached hundreds of millions of dollars, reached a valuation of $750 million, built 35 brick-and-mortar stores and earned the moniker “India’s Sephora.”
Nykaa’s stratospheric growth exemplifies the surge in both demand and consumption of beauty and wellness in India. The Indian beauty market, which was valued at $6.5 billion in 2017, is expected to exceed $20 billion by 2025.
13. Gucci launches its first fine jewelry collection
AKLC COMMENT(S):Gucci never fails to amaze!
The Kering Group has launched its very first fine jewelry boutique for Gucci at Place Vendome in Paris. This comes after the group has renovated the iconic Boucheron store at 26 Place Vendome.
The store inauguration marks the launch of Gucci’s fine jewellery line, with a first collection designed by Creative Director of the Kering group’s leading label, Alessandro Michele. Gucci’s first fine jewelry collection, titled Hortus Deliciarum, is available in the boutique alongside the brand’s gold jewelry.
The new collection consists of more than 200 pieces made in Italy and featuring colorful stones. The designs of the collection are centered around three themes, including eternal love, the animal kingdom, and solitaires.
14. Patrick Dempsey Is Already Attached to TAG Heuer’s New Limited-Edition Monaco Watch
AKLC COMMENT(S): Great!
For Patrick Dempsey, collecting watches isn’t just about a fascination with mechanisms and craftsmanship. Each one of the timepieces he owns carries an emotional significance that makes it even more valuable than the metal it’s made from and the movement whirring away inside.
Take for example the new TAG Heuer Monaco 1989–1999 Limited-Edition Timepiece, unveiled on Wednesday night in New York City. The watch is the third of five limited-edition timepieces designed to celebrate 50 years of the model’s history in the automotive realm. And while he hasn’t raced in a few years, as a TAG Heuer brand ambassador, Dempsey was already wearing one when we spoke to him at the event, held on the same day as (and, at Cipriani, a stone’s throw away from) the US Women’s Soccer Team’s triumphant parade in Downtown New York.
15. EXCLUSIVE: Kate Moss, Cara Delevingne to Create White Shirts Honoring Karl Lagerfeld
AKLC COMMENT(S): Keeping the legacy alive!
Many designers wished they had created blue jeans — among the most enduring of contemporary garments.
Not Karl Lagerfeld.
“If you ask me what I’d most like to have invented in fashion, I’d say the white shirt. For me, the white shirt is the basis of everything. Everything else comes after,” he once said.
Five months after the passing of the iconic designer, a host of his famous friends are coming together for “A Tribute to Karl: The White Shirt Project.” Cara Delevingne, Diane Kruger, Kate Moss, Amber Valletta, Lewis Hamilton, Tommy Hilfiger, Alessandro Michele, Takashi Murakami, Carine Roitfeld, Sébastien Jondeau and others are to design their own interpretation of Lagerfeld’s famous white shirt — a high, well-starched collar, as synonymous with him as a white ponytail and dark glasses.
16.Pain from Hong Kong protests spreads as luxury brands get hit
AKLC COMMENT(S): Very Disturbing! A challenging time for Hong Kong
HONG KONG (BLOOMBERG) – The impact from the Hong Kong protests is spreading to global luxury retailers, with jewelry and cosmetics getting hurt as shoppers and big-spending travelers stay away.
Swiss luxury-goods maker Richemont became the latest casualty, saying on Thursday (July 18) the street demonstrators dealt a blow to local sales. The owner of Cartier and Van Cleef & Arpels echoed Swatch Group AG in saying that the unrest in Hong Kong, the top export market for Swiss watches, weighed on sales due to store closures and lower tourist arrivals.
With restaurants and consumer brands already affected, retailers now face a widening disruption as shops from the city center to Hong Kong’s suburbs have been forced into early closures due to a lack of customers. A peaceful gathering of tens of thousands of protesters last Sunday turned into a fight with the police at a mall in Sha Tin on the city’s outskirts.
17. Reliance to bring jewellery brand Tiffany & Co to India
AKLC COMMENT(S): Can’t wait for the classic baubles to finally arrive in India!
Reliance Brands Limited has signed a deal with American jewellery brand Tiffany & Co to launch the latter in the Indian market.
Apart from Tiffany & Co, Reliance Brands has also signed a deal with American lifestyle label Tory Burch. Both the brands are expected to launch at Mumbai’s Jio World Centre mall next year, Economic Times reported citing sources.
Reliance Brands has been rapidly expanding its international portfolio by partnering with several international brands from across the globe.
The company had recently announced its partnership with Italian firm Percassi to launch men’s cosmetics brand Womo in the Indian market.
18. LVMH and Stella McCartney in partnership deal
AKLC COMMENT(S): A magnificent move!
Stella McCartney may have split from Kering last year, but it doesn’t means she’s going it alone. In a surprise move on Monday, LVMH announced that one of Britain’s leading designers, who’s also the flag-waver for all-things cruelty-free and sustainable is now linking up with the world’s largest luxury goods group.
19. Two Indian Airports Feature In List Of Top Airports For Business Travellers
AKLC COMMENT(S): Since GVK has taken over, indeed the experience at Mumbai Airport is a great one!
Globehunters, an online travel agency, has compiled a list of the world’s 45 most popular airports and has ranked them according to the suitability of business travellers.
Japan’s Narita International Airport in Tokyo topped the list, and Los Angeles International Airport ranked second. It also features two airports from India – Mumbai’s International Airport and Delhi’s Indira Gandhi International Airport. The former scored 4 out of 5 stars, whereas the latter scored 3 stars.
20. McLaren 600LT Spider lands in Singapore
AKLC COMMENT(S):So stunning! A beast in the motor world!
The first McLaren 600LT Spider has landed in Singapore, promising a world of fast and loud open-air motoring.
With strakes every which way and plenty of carbon fibre, the McLaren 600LT is aggressive and unmistakable.
21. South Korea is currently seeing a backlash against K-Beauty. Here’s why it’s important
AKLC COMMENT(S): K-BEAUTY is taking over the beauty market, however, don’t forget makeup is to enhance your good-looks, but is not absolutely necessary!
K-Beauty is evolving again, but not in the way you’d expect. After igniting beauty trends on a global scale, South Korea is now seeing an underground revolution that is calling for more realistic beauty standards. So, why now, and what’s changed?
The international enthusiasm for beauty technology and innovative delivery systems from South Korea is seemingly insatiable, with retailers, including Sephora, launching dedicated space on their sites for their K-Beauty offering (so-called for its sibling export, K-Pop). This furore accounts for K-Beauty’s value tipping $13 billion with $511 million worth of K-Beauty exported to the US in 2018 alone. Global market research and insights firm Mintel reports that South Korea is now among the top 10 global beauty markets, with facial skincare accounting for 51 per cent of that sum. It also predicts that by 2020, K-Beauty colour cosmetics will be worth in the region of $2.8 billion and facial skincare will hit $7.2 billion.
22. Pre-Owned Luxury Is a Force To Be Reckoned With
AKLC COMMENT(S): Millennials are luxury loving but not at the cost of the environment.
The second hand luxury market is steadily gathering pace and growing in popularity, thanks to rising demand from millennials who are helping drive sales. Luxury companies would do well to pay attention to the numerous opportunities that it can offer their brands.
23. Ulysse Nardin’s New Pop-Up Shop Takes You on a Virtual Tour of Its Intricate Watches
AKLC COMMENT(S): Ulysse Nardin is using technology to enhance customer experience!
In the watch industry, it’s the summer of pop-ups. Ulysse Nardin is the latest Swiss watchmaker to announce a temporary retail presence, this one at the Watches of Switzerland boutique in Manhattan’s Soho neighbourhood, open now through September.
Home to the brand’s major talking pieces—including the limited edition Freak X with marquetry dial, the Freak Vision in rose gold, the full range of the Skeleton X and the Marine Mega Yacht, a $310,000 platinum timepiece whose features echo the design of a luxury yacht—the pop-up is centered around a number of tech-centric experiences powered by the brand’s exclusive Leap Motion software.
24. Sales at Vuitton, Dior division boosts LVMH in second quarter
AKLC COMMENT(S): A great gain for LVMH
Luxury goods group LVMH on Wednesday posted better-than-expected second quarter revenue, lifted by accelerating momentum in its fashion and handbag division that houses its Louis Vuitton and Christian Dior megabrands.
LVMH, whose labels also include champagne maker Moet & Chandon, said second quarter sales rose 15% to 12.5 billion euro ($13.93 billion) euros, up 12% at stable exchange rates and a comparable number of stores. Analysts had expected like-for-like sales growth of around 10% in the period.
25. You Can Now Sign Up to Buy Your Own Hybrid-Electric Plane
AKLC COMMENT(S): The sky’s not the limit anymore 😉
Ampaire’s mission is “to be the world’s most trusted developer of practical, compelling electric aircraft,” and it appears that this is not a pie-in-the-sky goal. To start, the Los Angeles–based company is retrofitting existing passenger aircraft to electric power—the quickest and most cost-efficient way to make commercial electric air travel a reality ASAP.
26. The Future of Online Luxury Retail
AKLC COMMENT(S):The future is digital!
Traditional luxury brands have historically considered online retail to be a distribution platform fitted for selling low to mid-range luxury goods. Selling through multi-brand retail sites, in particular, was not seen as an appropriate channel for upscale brands. Multi-brand websites were often perceived as a threat to a luxury brand’s image amongst its affluent consumers.
High-end products were thus reserved for the premium experience of offline retail stores. This was based on the assumption that affluent consumers wouldn’t be willing to spend the premium price required for high-end luxury goods online. Indeed, wouldn’t luxury shoppers always favour a personalised customer service and a tactile shopping experience? The kind of experience that only a premium offline retail space could offer.
That assumption is now being challenged.
“By 2025, nearly one-fifth of personal luxury sales will take place online.”
27. Luxury industry mergers & acquisitions up 22% in 2018 according to Deloitte
AKLC COMMENT(S): A major reason being the boom in cosmetics and fragrance industries.
The luxury industry is more than ever an attractive hunting ground for investors, according to the fourth edition of the ‘Global Fashion & Luxury Private Equity and Investors Survey 2019’ published by Deloitte. Last year, a record number of mergers and acquisitions, 265, were carried out in the luxury sector, 47 more than in 2017, equivalent to a 22% increase.
28.Tennis Superstar Rafael Nadal Just Bought a New Yacht—and It’s a Sunreef Catamaran
AKLC COMMENT(S): Magnificent and lavish!
A month ago Robb Report reported that tennis star Rafael Nadal had listed his 76-foot Italian-built MCY 76 motor yacht, named Beethoven for his love of classical music, for $3 million with Camper & Nicholsons International.
This month, we are back to tell you that the 33-year-old professional tennis player has commissioned an 80 Sunreef Power catamaran from Sunreef Yachts, the very first example of which will premiere at the Cannes Yachting Festival in September, along with several other new models from the Polish shipyard. Nadal’s totally bespoke catamaran is scheduled for a 2020 delivery
29. Japan’s Largest Airline Unveils New First Class ‘Suites’ With Closing Doors and 43-Inch TVs
AKLC COMMENT(S): Awaiting the luxury experience in air!
Consistently awarded with five-star standard ratings, ANA, Japan’s largest airline, has long treated passengers to on-board innovations and upgraded comforts, earning accolades for its service and Business Class cuisine. Now, they’re upping their game again, with the introduction of twelve completely re-designed Boeing 777-300ER aircrafts—the first of which will take to the skies on the Tokyo-London route on August 2. Created in partnership with famed Japanese architect Kengo Kuma and noted British product/transport design studio Acumen, the new planes feature all-new First Class and Business Class suites, a Japanese-influenced décor, 4K entertainment systems, wellness-focused Panasonic lighting, and more.
30.Luxury car market shrinks by a quarter
AKLC COMMENT(S): Sad news for the India’s luxury car market
India’s luxury car market shrank by as much as a quarter in the first half of this year, industry executives said, as a slowdown in economic growth and uncertainty around elections made buyers cautious.
Manufacturers such as segment leader Mercedes-Benz and Audi expect the situation to improve in the coming months, though they also warn about risks such as continuing weakness in the economy, a high GST rate and increased import costs. Industry executives also fear the recent government ..
31. Barneys begins to raise financing for potential bankruptcy
AKLC COMMENT(S): A disturbing fall for Barney’s !
Barneys New York is raising financing for a bankruptcy filing that could come as soon as next week, people familiar with the situation say.
The company has been looking for a path to avoid bankruptcy to help cope with a liquidity crunch spurred by a rent hike at its Manhattan flagship.
Barneys is still exploring multiple paths, including those that would help the company avoid bankruptcy.