The Peak's 2019 Guide To The Best In Luxury (Part 2)

The Peak’s 2019 Guide To The Best In Luxury (Part 2)

The Peak’s round up on the best of all things luxury in 2019 holds plenty of surprises.

We continue our look back at the year 2019 and how the very best in horology, cars, travel and more have shaped the luxury industry this year and what it means for the following year.


Celebrating 90 years of racing excellence, impenetrable skill and inimitable passion, Hublot and Scuderia Ferrari have come together to present the Big Bang Scuderia Ferrari 90th Anniversary collection. As the most successful race team of all time, the series displays three different timepieces meant to represent the evolution of Scuderia Ferrari. Amidst the variations of the chronographs they do share several traits – a 45mm diameter, bezel cut from ceramic carbon, a flyback chronograph with a 72- hour power reserve and finally the famed HUB1241 UNICO movement.

Beginning in the early years of the race team the first edition uses textures from the peccary leather of the bucket seats and brushed look of the dashboard on the case and strap with dials inspired by vintage speedometers. A 3d carbon is used for the second edition case with the strap made from a fire-resistant synthetic fibre called Nomex with red and black stitching to emulate the colours used in present day single-seater Formula 1 cars. The final edition of the trilogy boasts a transparent case made from sapphire with a strap that is styled to look like futuristic Kevlar, as a sign to the future of innovation.


IWC Pilot’s Watch Double Chronograph Top Gun Ceratanium

Solid matt-black and gorgeous all over, the IWC Pilot’s Watch Double Chronograph Top Gun Ceratanium may certainly be a mouthful, but nothing gets the point across quicker than this timepiece. Crafted with aviation in mind, the Double Chronograph Top Gun Ceratanium brings something relatively new to the table with Ceratanium – a material made from milling the parts from titanium alloy before surrendering them to intense heat, that took the manufacturer seven years to develop.

This process transforms the alloy’s surface into a ceramic that is as unbreakable and lightweight as titanium. Scratchproof and built for daily use, Ceratanium, was initially used in 2018 on a limited edition Airtimer dive watch, but was then brought back for the showcasing of the IWC Pilot’s Watch Double Chronograph Top Gun Ceratanium at SIHH this year. The timepiece’s diameter spans across 41mm and carries more heft due to robust movement of the IWC calibre 79230. Water-resistant up to 60 m with a black textile strap, this aviation-inspired timepiece allows you to take to the skies in style.


Master Grande Tradition Gyrotourbillon Westminster Perpétuel

The fifth multi-axis tourbillon to be released from the Maison features a reduced size of 43mm by 14.08mm case size in 18K white gold, despite the various complications housed within. There are many aspects of the Gyrotourbillon Westminster Perpétuel to hone in on but none as outstanding as the multi-axis tourbillon, the Westminster Chime Minute Repeater and the remontoir d’égalité.

Reducing positional errors through incorporating the change of rate from vertical and horizontal positions sets aside the Gyrotourbillon onto a pedestal of its own. This in turn works in sync with the remontoir d’égalité, a component used to isolate the tourbillons regulator from the barrel’s torque. Playing off a cheery tune is the Westminster Chime Minute Repeater with a retractable pusher and four sets of sapphire crystal square-shaped gongs with striking hammers replicated the sound of Big Ben. Available in 2 dial design options, a daring blue guilloché enamel or a silver-grained design with matching blue alligator strap, Jaegar Le-Coultre marries style and function seamlessly.


Blue Label Ghost and Rare Port Ellen

Another special limited edition, the Johnnie Walker Blue Label Ghost and Rare Port Ellen is a treat for connoisseurs of the extraordinary. Following on last year’s Johnnie Walker Blue Label Ghost and Rare Brora, the second edition of the series is again crafted from irreplaceable ‘ghost’ whiskies and other incredibly rare whiskies from the Johnnie Walker Blue Label reserves. At the heart of this edition is the highly sought-after Islay single malt, Port Ellen, a ‘ghost’ distillery that ended operations in 1983 (although Diageo is reopening the distillery next year). The blend also features ‘ghost’ whiskies from the Caledonian and Carsebridge distilleries as well as rare expressions from Mortlach, Dailuaine, Cragganmore, Blair Athol and Oban. All the whiskies are at least 20 years old, while the youngest drop of Port Ellen is at least 34 years old.

This rich and intensely complex drink has layers of creamy vanilla sweetness on the nose, while the mouthfeel is of citrus and tropical fruit flavours with the distinct Port Ellen maritime smokiness. Light but subtly nuanced, the finish is long and warming. Bottled at 43 per cent ABV, the Johnnie Walker Blue Label Ghost and Rare Port Ellen is best enjoyed neat, with water on the side.


Sub-Zero Cool

Situated in Saariselkä, on the Finnish Lapland, this family-run resort has every type of dwelling from the Arctic region. Choose from traditional log cabins and chalets, glass igloos – to comfortably watch the aurora borealis from indoors – and even snow igloos. The resort serves as a good base to explore the surrounding areas and indulge in activities like trout or Arctic char fishing, hiking with huskies, and cross-country skiing. The resort also has a large art gallery exhibiting works by various Lapland artists.

In order to make each dwelling unique, various Scandinavian architects, including Norwegian architects Snöhetta, Tham & Videgård Arkitekter from Sweden, and Finnish-Icelandic-Norwegian studio Rintala Eggertsson Architects have featured designs there. Meanwhile, a related floating open-air cold bath, the Arctic Bath, has just opened on the nearby Lule River this year.


Modular Living has a trendy place to call home now at King Living’s brand new flagship outlet in Bangsar. Discover the joys of furniture that doesn’t just fit into everybody’s lives but also adds to it, simplifies, and makes it better in this outstanding, infinitely cosy living room laboratory!


It’s recent revamp is less about bringing new things to the popular SUV range, and more focused on improving what it already had. For instance, there’s subtle restyling front and rear, including new lighting designs and a cleaner grille. Inside, there’s expanded choice of 15 different variations of seat and trim finish and colourisation. And those yearning for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto mirroring will also find these now on the RX!

The Malaysian market gets the latest RX in three variants, starting with the RX300 Premium, following by the RX300 Luxury and finally the RX300 F Sport. All get a 2.0 litre turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine, developing 235 hp from 4,800 to 5,600 rpm and 350 Nm between 1,650 to 4,000 rpm. This is paired to a six-speed auto, with all-wheel drive as standard. The RX’s dynamics have been improved, though, with new stabiliser bars that are not only hollow to save weight, but also thicker in diameter and feature reinforced bushings to reduce body roll and improve steering response. The dampers have also been tuned to work with the stiffer roll bars, while upgraded dampers keep high-frequency vibrations in check for an even smoother ride.


Chanteloup XXO

Named after the Château de Chanteloup, the heart and soul of maison Martell, the Chanteloup XXO brings together 450 very old eaux-de-vie from the four most prestigious crus of Cognac – Borderies, Grande Champagne, Petite Champagne and Fins Bois – in a supreme expression of the maison’s expertise in the art of blending. This legacy of savoir-faire, passed on through nine generations, has allowed the current Cellar Master, Christophe Valtaud, to blend this exceptional cognac from a meticulous selection of rare and precious eaux-de-vie, the youngest of which are 14 years old. This exceptional virtuosity is further demonstrated with the Chanteloup XXO Masterpiece, an elaborate and exquisitely crafted trunk, made to order by Ateliers Normand, which holds the coveted Entreprise du Patrimoine Vivant (Living Heritage Company) label. As well as the precious cognac, inside are also two montres, the glass sampling bottles traditionally used in the Cognac region, the contents of which are personally chosen by the client in consultation with Valtaud. The Montre des Années is an eau-de-vie from among the oldest and most representative vintages of either the Borderies or Grande Champagne, while the Montre des Arômes is one of the notes developed by Martell Chanteloup XXO – the floral aromas characteristic of the Borderies, for example, or the fresh fruit of Fins Bois.


Montblanc’s Heritage Pulsograph Limited

The alluring aesthetic of a vintage timepiece mixed with the modern mechanisation of a strong movement, the Montblanc Manufacture Monopusher Chronograph calibre MB M13.21, is the exact recipe Montblanc used to create the Heritage Pulsograph Limited Edition chronograph. Uniquely built using classic midcentury style, the timepiece does away with a tachymeter, including a chronograph -pulsograph duo.

Montblanc famously houses movements from the Institut Minerva de Recherche en Haute Horlogerie or Minerva archives, and the calibre MB M13.21 is no exception. The movement draws its inspiration from the Minerva Monopusher Chronograph 13.20 movement which was created in the 1920s. With a Salmon dial further accentuated by the anthracite arabic numerals and dot indices, and a red retro payphone timer marker within the subdials all parts of the timepiece work together to sell the dream of vintage chronograph takeovers.


Patek Philippe 5520P Alarm Travel Time watch

Prepare for your journey to infinity and beyond with the quintessential time travel experience of the 5520P from Patek Philippe. Quiet yet loud, and sophisticated yet complex the gorgeous timepiece houses a selfwinding mechanical movement that combines both the alarm and Travel Time functions, the Caliber AL 30-66- S C FUS. The movement also contains a 24-hour alarm that strikes on a classic gong, the alarm time and day/night indicator for local and home times on the aperture as well as two time zones that users can set when travelling abroad.


21 Year Old

It’s been a bold year for Royal Salute: after 66 years, the luxurious premium blended whisky has finally expanded its 21 Year Old range. In a glittering event in Seoul earlier this year (see our report, Royal Parade, in our November 2019 issue), the brand released two new expressions as well as unveiled a new look for its signature blend that was first created to celebrate the coronation of HM Queen Elizabeth II in 1953. The new livery, created in collaboration with fine artist Kristjana S Williams, features a colourful depiction of the British Royal Menagerie that pays tribute to the brand’s royal heritage, as well as the iconic Royal Salute lion with his crooked crown and fluttering tartan butterflies that repnt the brand’s Scottish roots.

The 21 Year Old Signature Blend, which is presented in a sapphire flagon, remains unchanged, while The 21 Year Old Malts Blend, in an emerald flagon, is the first blended malt from Royal Salute and crafted with more than 21 precious single malts from the five regions of Scotland. The result is an indulgent and profound Scotch whisky bursting with notes of orchard fruits and enriched by subtle spices. The 21 Year Old Lost Blend, meanwhile, is housed in an obsidian flagon and combines scarce whiskies from distilleries no longer in production, with the ’lost’ Imperial Distillery at its heart.


If you’re in need of a saccharine treat, be it Sweets or Fruits, Richard Mille has just the delicacy for you. The Bonbon Collection, which is as pleasing as it sounds, is what one may imagine the confluence of Willy Wonka and luxury watchmaking to be, and they may be right. Colourful and cheery yet deliciously loud in style the Bonbon collection signals a clear flight from the Swiss luxury watchmakers racing trademark. The new collection includes references across the ‘Sweets’ and ‘Fruits’ series which have produced ten kaleidoscopic limited edition automatic models.

Despite the childish wonder of the pastel hues and juicy wedges of fruit, each titanium Bonbon timepiece takes, at minimum, 18 months to produce as certain drawings of the lollies and fruit wedges are painted on with singlehair brushes to recreate the look and texture of candy. The dials for each of the watches from the series are housed within either a Carbon TPT case or Quartz TPT and due to the exquisite craftsmanship, there are merely 30 delicious pieces of the timepiece per model.


Hybrid sneaker collection

2019 was the year of streetwear in the luxury fashion world, with fashion leaders embracing the edgier look and debuting collections very much inspired by the fashion trend. And one such release this year was the new collection of Hybrid sneakers from Salvatore Ferragamo, which took the trend to new heights by combining the flexibility and versatility of the sneaker with the formality and heritage of traditional bench-made leather shoes, hence the name. The result is a shoe that is pushes the boundaries of what we know of men’s footwear today, The Hybrid collection is divided into two styles that both encompasses every situation. The first style looks like a traditional leather dress shoe, with a classic looking upper, but sits atop a colourful rope-edged synthetic rubber sole. The colour contrast, black against a red sole or burgundy above black rubber, give this otherwise formal-looking footwear a little playful charm. The second style is more versatile, focusing on a molded articulated wedge heel that provides comfort, and comes with the choice of three uppers variations of a minimally decorated derby, a slip-on or a strap-fastened derby.


The year 2019 will be largely remembered for the introduction of foldable phones and the Samsung Galaxy Fold is without a doubt one of the front runners in the race. From its unique butterfly winglike design that lets you switch seamlessly from the modest 4.6inch cover display to the massive 7.3-inch Infinity Flex Display, this is one for the history books.

Not only are you able to see more on the screen but you can do more. This includes opening three apps simultaneously making it easy to browse the web, get navigation directions to a destination and take a picture using one of its six built-in cameras, all without breaking a sweat. It is easy to see why this is one of the most innovative smartphones to be released this year and sold out in just 24 hours when pre-orders for the device opened in Malaysia.


Monaco Heuer 02

A veritable titan within the watchmaking industry whose name and brand hold reaches far beyond the luxury watchmaking field, TAG Heuer celebrates the 50th anniversary of one of its most successful collections, the Monaco series. This momentous occasion is documented by the release of the Monaco Heuer 02, which for the first time since the collection’s birth, operates on an in-house manufacture movement.

Manufactured in Switzerland, the Calibre Heuer 02 movement which boasts a power reserve of 80 hours, had to have a Monaco case built specifically to house the manufacture calibre. Alongside a re-engineered case, the Monaco dial underwent certain changes including silver opaline counters at the 3 and 9 o’clock, eight tri-faceted indexes and a new permanent second indicator about the date at 6 o’clock. Available in a navy alligator leather strap that complements the radiant blue PVD sunray dial, the Monaco Heuer 02 is the perfect transition timepiece showcasing the traditional watch aficionados passing on the legacy to the upcoming generation.


Men’s Autumn-Winter 2019

Tod’s unveiled a whole host of new looks with their Men’s Autumn-Winter 2019 collection, introducing new technology in craftsmanship that changed even their most recognisable silhouettes. The collection aimed to provide the footwear and accessories to fit in to the new pace of life that the modern gentlemen leads, prioritising comfort and functionality without having to sacrifice on style and aesthetics. The collection stays true to that distinct Italian Attitude that is central to the Tod’s gentleman’s style, yet evolves with the times to constantly stay ahead.

Footwear saw the introduction of the Gommino cap, a toecap with the signature Gommino pattern that wraps around the front of the shoe, changing the look of a leather or suede boot into something of a statement. The iconic Gommino driving shoe also gets an upgrade, with the introduction of the Gommino Glove, made with neoprene on the shoe opening for a glovelike, close-fit effect when worn.


Windstar Cruises offers a cruise experience to some of the world’s most exotic places… with a twist: You get there under wind power! The boutique cruise line sails in the Caribbean, Mediterranean, Northern Europe, Tahiti, Alaska, Arabia, Costa Rica and Panama, visiting different, historic ports in some 60 nations. Its six-vessel fleet consists of motorised sailing ships (with full-on masts and sails) that only carry between 148 and 310 passengers.

Windstar Cruises has also partnered with the James Beard Foundation – the New York-based organisation famed for its restaurant and chef awards – to produce culinary-focused cruises. These ocean experiences offer the best in food, drink and gourmet events and visit ports that are celebrated for good food and drink.  Thus, every Windstar James Beard cruise features a major award-winning guest chef and menu to boot! Passengers can hobnob with the chef in daily cooking demos, tastings, and cocktail parties, and follow the chef-led shore excursions for shopping in each port’s farmer’s market.

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