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Russian billionaire Viktor Vekselberg on Tuesday opened a museum to display his glittering collection of Faberge eggs, once owned by the tsars, in the former imperial capital of Saint Petersburg.
Vekselberg bought the collection of eggs from the estate of the late Malcolm Forbes, the US publisher of Forbes magazine in 2004, vowing to bring them back to Russia.
The jewelled eggs with enamel and painted details include one given by the last tsar Nicholas II to his mother, Maria Fyodorovna, which is decorated with his portrait as well as that of his heir, Alexei.
Another made to celebrate the first anniversary of Nicholas II’s coronation has a surprise inside: a model of a tiny gold carriage. Others contain a gold hen and an enamelled rosebud.
The 18th-century mansion housing the museum originally belonged to Ivan Shuvalov, a favourite of Tsarina Elizabeth Petrovna. It was used for welcoming international delegations in Soviet days.
Vekselberg is worth some $15.1 billion, making him Russia’s fourth richest businessman, according to Forbes magazine, which estimated tbe value of his art collection at $850 million.
Court jeweller Peter Carl Faberge made around 50 of the eggs. The family tradition began in 1885 when Tsar Alexander III gave his wife, Maria Fyodorovna, a richly jewelled egg for Easter.
The Bolsheviks sold many of the eggs abroad to raise money after the October Revolution. Others were smuggled out by relatives of the last tsar’s family, who were shot in 1918.
Vekselberg’s collection of Faberge objects is rated as one of the world’s most valuable. When he bought them, the price was not disclosed, but the collection had previously been valued at $90 million.
In the year the film “Rush” has been released, directed by Oscar winner Ron Howard and telling the story of the rivalry between Niki Lauda and James Hunt, a Prancing Horse owner has decided to personalise his new 458 Italia in the livery that featured on the Maranello cars back in the golden age that covered the mid-Seventies.
In those days, the Scuderia took three consecutive Constructors’ titles and two Drivers’ both of them thanks to the Austrian driver.
In red with a white roof, featuring the Italian flag going longitudinally across it, with gold rims, the car was prepared with this exclusive design by the Commercial Department at Ferrari as part of the Tailor Made personalisation programme, with the collaboration of a personal designer from the Maranello Style Centre. The interior has not been neglected with the seats and central tunnel reprising the italian flag motif and the racing aspect is accentuated by the type of seats and the red motif on their stitching, the dashboard and instrument panel and the steering wheel with LEDs, as well as the F1 type gear shifts.
The 458 Italia represents the perfect synthesis of technological innovation, style, creativity and passion, all qualities that are a byword for Italy in the world. The owner of this two seater berlinetta, powered by the multi award winning V8 engine, wanted to make it unique by paying tribute to one of the happiest and most productive eras in the history of the Scuderia.
The largest orange diamond to ever appear at an auction house has broken records as it fetched more than $35.5 million at Christie’s Geneva Magnificent Jewels sale.
Breaking its own estimates of $21 million, the 14.82-carat diamond went under the hammer at the auction held at the Four Seasons Hotel des Bergues. At $2,398,151 per carat, the rare gem also set a world record price per carat for any colored diamond sold at auction.
The new record price will place The Orange among the greatest pinks and blues, which are traditionally the most appreciated colored diamonds.
The bidding which opened at 10 million francs and quickly reached $20 million francs before the bidding slowed until the winning bid of 29 million francs ($31.6 million). The final total of $35,531,974 million includes fees and commissions.
“The Orange” is believed to be the world’s largest orange diamond, approximately three times larger than the two other known orange diamonds: The 5.54-carat “Pumpkin Diamond,” sold privately, and the 4.19-carat vivid orange diamond sold at auction price of $2.95 million in October 2011. Pure orange diamonds are exceptionally rare and are usually found with secondary colors. The orange color is the result of the presence of nitrogen during the diamond’s creation. Graded by the Gemological Institute of America, the diamond has a VS1 clarity and has been classified as a Type IA.
If you’re not a millionaire, don’t give up hope that you will become one someday. Take note of the reasons you aren’t a millionaire and resolve to make changes that will make a million dollars obtainable, even for the average person.
You may also like:How to Get Rich and Achieve Financial
1. You’re Not Your Own Boss
Although there’s no guarantee that self-employment will earn you a million dollars, it’s really unlikely that working for someone else will get you there either. There are very few jobs that pay million dollar salaries.
Don’t quit your day job tomorrow to launch a business, however. Instead, consider keeping your day job while you start a business on the side. You’ll have the security of your current salary along with an opportunity to create a business where you can earn extra cash.
We also recommend: 10 Qualities That Will Make You Successful
2. You Avoid Taking Risks
People don’t become millionaires without taking any risks. Taking a risk doesn’t mean you need to invest all your money into a single investment or that you need to gamble earnings foolishly.
However, taking calculated risks is often part of good money management. No one gets rich on the interest they earn from the bank. Instead, millionaires know how to invest their money wisely.
3. You Never Act on Your Good Ideas
It’s one thing to come up with million dollar ideas, but a completely different thing to act on them. If you are more a dreamer who never puts his money where his mouth is, you’ll never get rich. Millionaires don’t sit around and watch others advance in life. They take action to help them reach their goals.
4. You Don’t Manage Your Money Wisely
The average person has the potential to become a millionaire in today’s world. Sound investments, a solid budget, and clear goals can mean that a person who earns an average salary can become a millionaire by retirement.
If you don’t manage your money wisely now, however, it’s unlikely that you’ll be able to handle a million dollars with good sense. Establish a budget and create goals for yourself to help you save money now.
5. You Don’t Set Clear Goals for Yourself
People who don’t have clear goals aren’t going to make smart money decisions. You need goals to help you save money and invest wisely.
Create goals, such as getting out of debt or saving up for a vacation home. Creating goals will help you determine whether or not you should spend your money on other things that come up in the meantime. If you’re saving with a specific goal in mind, it’s much easier to say no to tempting opportunities to spend money.
6. You Don’t Put in Enough Time, Effort, and Energy
No one makes a million dollars by watching TV or sleeping 12 hours a night. Unless you’re lucky enough to win the lottery or inherit a windfall, becoming a millionaire takes hard work.
Millionaires consider the time and energy they put into a project to be an investment. They understand they won’t get immediate results but are willing to put in the hard work it takes to see the fruits of their labor. Learn how to manage your time wisely so you can become more productive with your efforts.
7. You Aren’t Networking with the Right People
You won’t become successful in life if you spend time with lazy people who aren’t interested in managing their money wisely. However, if you surround yourself with energetic, successful people, it will rub off on you.
Develop relationships with successful people in your community. Look for people who can mentor you in your efforts to manage your finances, invest wisely, or build a business. Spending time with others who share your goals can help fuel your passion and efforts to become a successful millionaire.
Want to be successful? Take the first step and sleep well: 11 Sleep Habits of Successful People
Victoria’s Secret fantasy bras may be no secret but are perhaps the secret fantasy of every living woman.
If like me, you swear by the luxury label, you would have heard of Adriana Lima donning a $2 million diamond studded Victoria’s Secret version, Alessandra Ambrosio posing in a whopping $25 million floral fantasy bra and Miranda Kerr strutting in a $25 million bra by the lingerie giant. Following in their fantastical footsteps is Candice Swanepoel. The South African beauty is all set to step out in an enviable Fantasy Bra after becoming the chosen one from a myriad of models.
Touted the “Royal Fantasy Bra,” the blingy piece of innerwear looks immensely royal indeed. After all, it comes studded with 4,200 gemstones including rubies, yellow sapphires and diamonds. The stones are set in 18-carat gold with a 52-carat pear-shaped ruby that dangles at the center, rather large even for this regal marvel. The Mouawad-designed piece, complete with a bow and matching belt culminates this year’s showing of a tradition that dates back to 1996 when the “Million Dollar Miracle Bra” was first modeled by Claudia Schiffer.
And as a 24 year old now prepares to pose in the royal garment, it in turn poses royally with a price tag of $10 million. Come December 10, all eyes will be glued to the glittering bra when the 2013 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show goes on air on CBS.
Here are 14 things successful people do (or should be doing) on weekends:
1. Make time for family and friends. This is especially important for those who don’t spend much time with their loved ones during the week.
2. Exercise. Everyone needs to do it, and if you can’t work out 4 to 5 days during the workweek, you need to be active on weekends to make up for some of that time, Vanderkam says. It’s the perfect opportunity to clear your mind and create fresh ideas.
“I know an owner of a PR firm who takes walks in the park with his dog to spark ideas about how to pitch a new client, or what angle to take with the press for a story,” Kurow says.
Cohen suggests spin classes and outdoor cycling in the warmer months. “Both are energizing and can be organized among people with shared interests. For example, it is not uncommon for hedge fund folks and Wall Street professionals to ride together on weekends. It is a great way to establish and cultivate relationships based on membership in this elite professional community.”
3. Pursue a passion. “There’s a creative director of a greeting card company who went back to school to pursue an MFA because of her love of art,” Kurow says. “Pursuing this passion turned into a love of poetry that she now writes on weekends.”
“Successful people make time for what is important or fun,” Egan adds. “They make space for activities that add to their life balance.”
4. Vacation. Getting away for the weekend provides a great respite from the grind of an intense week at work, Cohen says.
5. Disconnect. The most successful people avoid e-mail for a period of time, Vanderkam says. “I’m not saying the whole weekend, but even just a walk without the phone can feel liberating. I advocate taking a ‘tech Sabbath.’ If you don’t have a specific religious obligation of no-work time, taking Saturday night to mid-day Sunday off is a nice, ecumenical time that works for many people.”
6. Volunteer. “I know a commercial real estate broker who volunteers to help with cook-off events whose proceeds are donated to the Food Bank,” Kurow says. “The volunteer work provides a balance to the heavy analytical work she does all week and fulfills her need to be creative — she designs the promotional material for the non-profit.”
Cohen says a lot of successful people participate in fundraising events. “This is a great way to network and to meet others with similar interests,” he says. “The visibility also helps in branding a successful person as philanthropic.”
7. Avoid chores. Every weekend has a few have-to-dos, but you want these to take the minimum amount of time possible, Vanderkam explains. Create a small window for chores and errands, and then banish them from your mind the rest of the time.
8. Plan. “Planning makes people more effective, and doing it before the week starts means you can hit Monday ready to go, and means you’ll give clear directions to the people who work for you, so they will be ready to go, too,” Vanderkam says.
Trunk agrees. She says successful people plan their month and year because “if you get stuck on short-term lists you don’t get anything big accomplished.”
9. Socialize. “Humans are social creatures, and studies of people’s experienced happiness through the day finds that socializing ranks right up there, not too far down below sex,” Vanderkam says.
Go out with friends and family, or get involved in the local community.
“It has been demonstrated that successful people find great satisfaction in giving back,” Cohen says. “Board membership, for example, also offers access to other successful folks.”
10. Gardening/crafts/games/sports/cooking/cultural activities. This is especially important for those cooped up in an office all week.
“For the pure joy, some folks find great satisfaction in creating beautiful gardens,” Cohen says.
Kurow knows an attorney who uses her weekends to garden and do mosaics and tile work to satisfy her creative side. “Filling her life this way enables her to be refreshed on Monday and ready to tackle the litigation and trial prep work. Artwork for her is fulfilling in a way that feeds her soul and her need to connect with her spiritual side.”
Bridge lessons and groups can also sharpen the mind and often create relationships among highly competitive smart professionals, Cohen says. “I once saw a printout of a bridge club’s membership list; its members were a who’s who of Wall Street.”
Theatre, opera and sporting events can also enrich one’s spirit, he adds.
11. Network. “Networking isn’t an event for a successful person, it’s a lifestyle,” Trunk says. Wherever they go and whatever they do, they manage to connect with new people.
12. Reflect. Egan says truly successful people make time on weekends to appreciate what they have and reflect on their happiness and accomplishments. As Rascoff said, “weekends are a great chance to reflect and be more introspective about bigger issues.”
13. Meditate. Classes and private instruction offer a bespoke approach to insight and peace of mind, Cohen says. “How better to equip yourself for success in this very tough world?”
14. Recharge. We live in a competitive world, Vanderkam says. “Peak performance requires managing downtime, too–with the goal of really recharging your batteries.” That’s how the most successful people get so much done.
Successful people know that time is too precious to be totally leisurely about leisure, Vanderkam concludes. “You’re not going to waste that time by failing to think about what you’d like to do with it, and thus losing the weekend to TV, puttering, inefficient e-mail checking, and chores. If you don’t have a busy workweek, your weekend doesn’t matter so much. But if you’re going from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. every day, it certainly does.”
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A 12-liter bottle of 2009 Chateau Margaux is being touted as one of the best vintages in the winery’s history to justify its $195,000 price tag and make it the most expensive bottle of wine to be retailed.
After a little number crunching, based on the assumption that a standard bottle of wine yields five five-ounce (150 ml) glasses of wine, that works out to be a jaw-dropping US$2,437 a glass.
This marks the first time that the French winery has bottled Balthazars (12-liter bottles). Only six have been produced, three of which will be offered for sale through luxury wine merchant Le Clos, whose flagship outlet is located at the Dubai International Airport, Terminal 3. Their virtual store is open 24/7.
The Balthazar is housed in an oak case which has been raised on steel legs and the bottle itself engraved in gold by a master craftsman.
Winemakers describe the wine as having “finesse, balance and freshness” with a flavorful finish of “astonishing” length which can be aged for a century.
In addition to claiming the landmark vintage, the owner will be flown first class to France to visit the estate in Bordeaux. They will also get a private tour of its cellars and vineyard before sitting down to dinner with chateau winemaker and managing director Paul Pontallier.
Ray-Ban‘s legendary Aviator sunglasses will soon be available in an exceptionally luxurious edition, with frames made from solid 18-karat gold.
Launched in 1937, Ray-Ban’s Aviator frames were initially designed for US Air Force pilots, who wore them for maximum protection from the sun’s rays on high altitude flights. Today, the brand’s Aviator model is an iconic accessory worn by men and women alike.
Ray-Ban has presented a number of variations on the original design over the years, using different materials and colors. This November the brand will launch Aviators with a solid 18-karat gold frame. The polarized G-15 crystal lenses are also of exceptionally high quality.
Only 1,200 pairs of these exclusive and luxurious sunglasses will be produced. The model will be available from November at the price of €2,800 (around $3800).
Bentley Motors and Vintage Classics are partnering for a 500-copy limited run of James Bond debut “Casino Royale,” pricing the leather-cased copies at £750 (about $1200) a piece.
The Bentley link is in reference to James Bond’s affinity for the performance cars, and Random House furnishes the limited edition accordingly.
Its hand-bound beluga leather case comes from the same tannery as Bentley’s interiors, the metal spine is reminiscent of Bentleys tread plates, and a secret compartment hides a set of playing cards.
The Bentley edition of “Casino Royale” is to go on sale from November 1, with orders being taken via telephone numbers available from Fleming’s official website.
Seven Stars in Kyushu is the latest luxury train offering and the first in Japan that will take you cruising through the island of Kyushu.
The new super-luxury train offers its guests the luxury of a lounge car with a piano and a bar, top-end dining and 14 private suites. The train travels around the rural southern island of Kyushu, on a four-day, three-night itinerary costing up to 1.13 million yen ($11,400) per couple. The train which goes into service in October is already fully booked until June 2014.
The concept of Seven Star in Kyushu came from the need to offer a cruise just for Japan. True to its name, Kyushu offers seven tourist attractions including nature, cuisine, hot springs, traditional culture, power spots, friendliness and Train travel. Combined with the finest onboard experience, the train is an experience beyond one’s imagination.
The cruise train is decorated with various woods and fabrics in a fusion that is reflective of both Japanese and Western cultures. During the day, the Lounge Car is your ideal compartment with a bar counter that opens in the evening while passengers relax, listening to live piano performances. From the Lounge Car to the Dining Car, where tables are adorned with gourmet delights from Kyushu, There will also be occasions for passengers to alight from the train for their meals and experience the local fare,
Once it’s time to retire, the train’s stately Guestrooms offering the ideal relaxing space, The fourteen guest rooms on the “Seven Stars in Kyushu” are all suite rooms. The spacious guest rooms include the “Deluxe Suites” with two suites per carriage, and the “Suites” with three suites per carriage. The wood-paneled bedrooms offer plush beds and a desk along with an ensuite bathroom with a shower and toilet, equipped with a heated seat.
This first inland cruise in Japan is sure to offer its passengers a completely new travel experience.