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Brand Launches

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Lounge Access at 02

NY-LON Bar entrance at 02

Anyone who’s sampled the delights of Virgin Atlantic’s Clubhouse at Heathrow will endorse the airline’s lounge know-how. And now it brings its flair to The O2 in London with official partner Delta Air Lines. Sat Bal (24 Jul’15)

The aptly labelled NY-LON lounge bar brings New York and London style cues to London’s O2 to give customers that first-class check-in lounge feel.  The combined ethos of Delta and Virgin brings customers NY-style cured meats and English dishes such as Billingsgate fish pie.

The bar’s head mixologist offers classic cocktails with a creative twist of classics served alongside an innovative range of aviation themed cocktails such as Aviation, Transatlantic, Flying Lady, Maiden Voyager and Atlanta.

Manchester-based design agency, LOVE, received the brief to create a stylish new lounge bar at 02, the first out-of-airport lounge bar of its kind to open in London. NY-LON will be managed for the airlines by leading hospitality brand, Levy Restaurants UK

Reuben Arnold, SVP of marketing & customer experience at Virgin Atlantic, said “We’ve created NY-LON as a celebration of our transatlantic network which provides customers with a seamless, more enjoyable way to fly between the U.K. and U.S. Our lounge bar will offer customers a brand-new experience at the O2 that showcases our airlines’ world-class service.”

Tim Mapes, Delta’s SVP of marketing said: “Opening NY-LON is the next exciting step in our partnership and we look forward to helping travellers enjoy the Delta-Virgin Atlantic brand of hospitality for which we’re famous when they next visit The O2.”

Members of the airlines’ SkyMiles and Flying Club will benefit from a range of special offers and discounts. NY-LON takes up 400 guests and features a large bar and seating area, plus a “secret space” for meetings, private dining or small events.

Open seven days a week, NY-LON is set to open at the end of  this month. 

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Rich Pickings at Veuve Clicquot

Veuve Clicquot Rich Image

Veuve Clicquot’s Rich champagne has been launched for drinkers who like to add their favourite ingredients to their bubbles. Abigail Parkin (15 Jul’15)

Rich follows the summer trend for drinking champagne over ice and mixologists can experiment with a bizarre range of blends. Recommendations including grapefruit, cucumber, celery, peppers and tea. Rich’s higher dosage of Pinot Noir features a tailored blend of grapes issuing with citrus and floral notes.

Different varieties of Rich cocktails are on offer at stylish London venues including Ham Yard HotelHotel Cafe Royal, Mr Fogg's and The Blind Spot, St Martin’s Lane Hotel.

It is also available exclusively from Selfridges at £59.99.

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Introducing C de Cartier

The fine jeweller brings us the C de Cartier bag in a range of colours for a range of moods. Hannah Charlesworth gets moody. (10 Jun'15)

Read more

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Aston Martin Parks in Shanghai

Aston Martin China

The 16th Shanghai International Automobile Industry Exhibition has created firsts for Aston Martin Lagonda. Its innovative DBX Concept and exclusive Lagonda Taraf got their first showing in China, indicating Aston Martin’s commitment to the market. Sat Bal (21 Apr’15)

The luxury brand’s CEO Dr Andy Palmer oversaw the display of handcrafted luxury sports cars in Shanghai with each model on display representing a distinctive and differentiated story for Chinese customers. The emphasis is clearly on a decade-hence future as exemplified by the DBX Concept.

“With its unique fusion of high luxury and advanced technology along with its day-to-day practicality, the DBX Concept is a piece of fresh, bold thinking about how the high luxury GT sector may evolve,” said Dr Palmer. “It is our first all-electric, all-wheel drive car, showcasing the brand’s world-class engineering and design capabilities, and we believe this type of product will be particularly appealing to customers in China.”

The Shanghai exhibition also provided an opportunity to communicate Aston Martin’s “Second Century” plan which will see every model in the current line-up replaced and up to three new models lines will be added by the end of the decade in what the carmaker says is the largest investment plan in its 102 year history.

 “I have challenged not only convention but also my team to investigate an electric version of the Rapide, a product which will undoubtedly be attractive for the China market. Our relationships with leading Chinese companies such as Hanergy and now with Letv shows the potential to connect British craftsmanship with the very latest in Chinese technology,” added Dr Palmer.

The Lagonda Taraf will be limited to a global production run of just 200 super-saloons and draws inspiration from the highly sought-after William Towns-designed Lagonda of 1976. The model will further benefit from the growth of Q by Aston Martin, the bespoke personalisation service which aims to cater for customers’ interior design whims to create ultra-personalised luxury sports cars for an increasing number of Chinese customers.

In Shanghai guests on the show stand were able to take a closer look at the wide array of options available through the Q by Aston Martin service.  They could also take heart from the fact that the new eight-speed models on display at the Aston Martin stand – the Vanquish and Rapide S – are now available to order in China along with the Lagonda Taraf.

The latest versions of the Vanquish and Rapide S feature the new state-of-the-art ZF Touchtronic III 8-speed automatic transmission and show improvements in all major areas of the cars’ performance and fuel economy. Both models can reach top speeds in excess of 200 mph.

 “The China auto show debuts of the DBX Concept and Lagonda Taraf at Auto Shanghai 2015 are a clear signal that China is an increasingly significant market for Aston Martin,” said Michael Peng, president of Aston Martin China. “In the second century, we will continue to place a high importance on China and its growing number of discerning luxury sports car enthusiasts.  We have stable and long-term relationships with our China dealer partners who represent the brand in 15 key cities on the Mainland, and we will work with these partners to continue to deliver first-class services to our valued Chinese customers.”

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Inner Sanctum

Dating clubs often evoke images of tacky pick-up joints with an uneven  ratio of men and women, featuring liberal levels of alcohol. London’s The Inner Circle aims to change all of that with the launch of  its dedicated singles bar. Hannah Charlesworth  (1 Apr’15)   Read more

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Bonnie May Events Launches

For those of us who have wandered backstage at big music events over the years, chances are that we enjoyed a Bonnie May lunch. Now Bonnie has launched her new venture enterprise, Bonnie May Events, seasoned with more than 25 years’ experience. Sat Bal (22 Jan’15)   Read more

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Mission Controlled - Mercedes F015

Driving Mercedes’ current S-Class is as good a glimpse as any into the automotive future. But the brand really wowed the crowds with the unveiling of its F015 concept car in Las Vegas, above. Sat Bal  Read more

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Etihad’s New Jet Age

First class airline travel has just become second class thanks to Etihad Airways. The airline’s new luxurious three-room onboard cabin makes it the most exclusive ticket on a commercial passenger aircraft today – at a cost of around £15,000, one way!  Sat Bal  Read more

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The Hospital Club Launches 15 Bedrooms

The Hospital Club’s reputation as a creative hub is to be enhanced with the opening of 15  bedrooms in January. Sat Bal (15 Dec’14)   Read more

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Eva Green Stars in Campari 2015 Calendar

Actress Eva Green’s vintage glamour is the focus of Campari’s 2015 calendar shoot. The images have just been released and should ensure that this is one of the more surreal and stylish of 2015’s calendars.  Sat Bal (6 Nov’14)   Read more