Sunday, November 26, 2006

50 things to buy before you die



La Prairie, Skin Caviar Luxe Cream $210. It’s a million-dollar question: what’s the best face cream in the world? If we had to pick the best allround one it would have to be La Prairie’s Caviar Luxe.
Rich in caviar extract, which is known for its nourishing properties, it is light but rich and sinks in effortlessly.


Guerlain, Kiss Kiss Exces De Rouge $15. The gold packaging will make this one of the most attractive items in your makeup bag. The punchy pillar-box shade is extremely versatile.


Vespa, GTS250 $3,249. Invented by Rinaldo Piaggio in 1946 as the perfect cheap vehicle to get post-war Italy moving again. The GS (the Grand Sport) is on permanent display at the Museum of Modern Art in New York.


Garrard from $1,000 for a gold band. Dating back to 1722, when founder George Wickes entered Goldsmiths Hall, Garrard is most famous for making royal crowns. Now, with Jade Jagger at the helm, the jeweller is one of the most glamourous places to go for a classic gold wedding band.


Burberry, from $696. In the early 1900s, Army officers started wearing these coats as part of their uniform, and by the 1940s, the trenchcoat was mainstream fashion. Today, the Burberry trench is still made from a closely woven Egyptian cotton called gabardine.


Harry Winston, from $8,500. Established in 1932, the jeweller is synonymous with the Academy Awards.


Derek Rose, from $88.98. We’re in the throes of a pyjama boom and Derek Rose is the undisputed king of PJs. His collection is worn by everyone from the Queen to the children at Hogwarts in the Harry Potter films — even John and Yoko had matching his-and-hers pairs.


Manolo Blahnik. From $375. Madonna described Manolo Blahnik’s shoes as ‘better than sex’, adding ‘what’s more, they last longer’. She has a point.


Almas. Approximately $350. The most prized caviar is also the most rare. Almas, which is pale — almost white — in colour, comes from very rare albino sturgeons.


Kopi Luwak, Selfridges approximately $24 for
a 57g (2oz) bag. These beans from Indonesia are produced from the excrement of treeclimbing civets, who feast on coffee cherries, eating them whole. When they have passed through their bodies, the beans are collected. The result, thanks to the civet’s gastric juices, is a uniquely smooth flavour.


L’Artisan du Chocolat. Banana and thyme chocolate $7.50. Chef Gordon Ramsay describes it as ‘the Bentley of chocolate’.


Laura Mercier, Creme Brulee Honey Bath, $22. As the poet Sylvia Plath once said: ‘There must be quite a few things that a bath won’t cure, but I don’t know many of them.’ And if any product can help achieve this it’s Laura Mercier’s.


Chateau Mouton Rothschild, 1945, anything upwards of $3,000. Other vintages start at $80. Claret is a dry red wine from the Bordeaux region. The magazine Decanter recently claimed Chateau Mouton Rothschild, 1945, was the one wine everyone should drink before they die.


Hermes Birkin, How much? From $3,500. The ‘it’ bag is the fashion phenomenon of the 21st century. If there’s one bag that outshines the competition, it is the Hermes Birkin. Loved by Kate Moss, Madonna and Elle Macpherson, it still has waiting lists of three months.


Mariage Freres, 00 33 1 4347 1854. How much? $81. The French are in the throws of a love affair with tea. Mariage Freres is the most celebrated salon — Hugh Grant and Isabelle Adjani are fans. The shop is tea heaven, with hundred of blends of teas and some very stylish teapots.


Studio 65, Bocca Marilyn lips sofa, $4,500. You can’t get a more inviting couch than one in the shape of a luscious pair of red lips. Inspired by Salvador Dali’s Mae West sofa, which was made in 1936.


Judith Leiber, minaudiere crystal clutch, from $1,051. When Renee, Nicole and Scarlett are wondering which bag to take to their next red carpet event, there’s no hesitation. Leiber’s exquisite and expensive, gemencrusted hard-case clutch bags spell all-out glamour.


Savon de Marseille, $2 per
block. Savon de Marseille uses no additives, no artificial colours, no animal fats.


Thomas Goode, from $65 for a bespoke plate. Fine bone china is the ultimate tool for keeping up with the Jones’s — show it off by displaying it on dressers and in cabinets. And if you really want to outdo the couple next door, buy Thomas Goode — a big hit with the Queen.


Pratesi. A basic 480-threadcount sheet starts at $825. Pratesi is synonymous with quality. Treated properly, good bed linen is an investment that will last a lifetime


Agent Provocateur, from $25. A pair of knickers is one of the most personal, secretive and exciting of purchases. Agent Provocateur, which made spending $20 or more on a pair of pants acceptable, offers one of the most pleasurable knickerbuying experiences.


Cristal, approximately $125. P Diddy famously spent $120,000 on Cristal in a London club — which is not as difficult as you’d imagine when you consider the price. A cult name for quality quaffing.


Mikimoto. Pearl devotees are as classy as they come: think Coco Chanel, Audrey Hepburn and the Queen. Mikimoto provides the best cultured-pearl necklaces, primarily because they leave the oysters alone for the longest in a four-year process.


Loro Piana, $395. Buyers
and textile snobs alike
say Loro Piana is the
very best cashmere
money can buy. The
company uses only
purest white cashmere from the Kel goat, which is found in high altitude regions of Central Asia.


Leica MP, $1,850. Pundits predict that film will soon be a thing of the past. Leica aficionados beg to differ, believing these are the only cameras worth
hanging around your neck, thanks to an unusually quiet shutter release, an ability to take excellent pictures in even the gloomiest of light and, of course, handsome good looks.


Cartier Tankissime, $13,925. The 18-carat, white gold, diamond-set Tankissime watch is timelessly elegant with a small, square face, diamond edging and chunky white-gold silver links.


Yves Saint Laurent, Mascara Volume Effet Faux Cils, $17. Since launching in 2000, YSL’s most popular mascara has been a massive hit, thanks to its ability to make the lashes appear instantly glamorous — as though you’ve just applied the most perfect set of false lashes, in fact.


Giuseppe Giusti, Aceto Balsamico Tradizionale. From $11-$100. The good stuff should be as dark as treacle, the taste a balance of sweet and sour. You can’t go wrong with any aged balsamic vinegar from Modena. Giusti is one of the oldest.

1 comment:

Marsha said...

How profoundly sad, this entire article.