Villae International Magazine

Villae International, EREN’s official magazine articles and content

RIVA: at home on the lakes

Born on the shores of the Lago d’Iseo in northern Italy, Riva is today renowned for its sleek and powerful motor yachts. To have one of these impressive floating palaces at harbour in San Remo, Monaco, Puerto Banús, Ibiza or Porto Cervo remains a dream for oil sheiks and business tycoons alike, but the origins – and true spirit – of Riva lie not in the Mediterranean but in the paradisiacal lakes on the doorstep of the Alps.

The return of the Gentleman

Kissing hand – GentlemanThere was a time when a gentleman was the ultimate form of male humanity. If such a personage was also a bit of a dab hand at war, sports and the seducing of ladies, well so much the better. But it was the more serious characteristics of a gentleman that earned the greatest respect, making qualities such as good manners, refinement in look and intellect, a strong moral code and steadfast reliability the marks that made the man. You could rely on a real gentleman, and as the refined form of a ‘real man’ he was not confused about his gender role, but strong, resolute and also gentle and respectful towards women.

Take a different route: geting away, a whole new meaning

For so long now we have associated travel with sea, sun, sightseeing, pampering and generally making a nuisance of ourselves that it’s hardly a wonder that tourists are not the most beloved of people around the world. Instead of the conventional seaside hotel, country getaway or city tour we sought to find modern-day travel inspiration along a different route – one that approached the tourist experience from a novel perspective.

Art on wheels: Málaga Car Museum

The Museo Automovilístico de Málaga, opened in 2010, is one of the latest in a series of new cultural offerings in the city. Indeed, cultural, because this tastefully presented collection is not so much a petrol head’s paradise as a museum dedicated to art on wheels.

Places worth escaping to…

In a world of luxury hotels, designer destinations and opulent resorts there are places that still conjure up the sense of perfect escape. The collection of Welcome Beyond offers a series of seductive options that redefine the concept of destination.

Vicente Gracia: giving shape to Romanticism

As a young boy, Vicente Gracia fell in love with jewellery in the family workshop, mesmerized by the precious metals, gems and techniques that sculpt these miniature works of art. Though his personal style as a creator of jewellery differs greatly from that of his father, the love affair with the fine materials and processes of his trade remains as strong as ever. Not one to follow the ‘fashion’ trends of the day, Vicente Gracia is someone who follows his own route, allowing inspiration to fire a creative streak that needs to run free. The result is a style of jewellery that is not only unique – but also highly sought after from New York and Valencia to London, Rome and the Middle East.

Top Spots: A look at some of the finest golf clubs in the world

Championship-class golf courses that are beautifully kept and set in awe-inspiring locations: Gleneagles, Scotland; Indian Wells, Southern California; Penha Longa, Sintra; Troon North Golf Club, Arizona; The Els Club, Dubai; Club de Golf Valderrama, Sotogrande; El Saler, Valencia.

Travel like Tintin

Many of us first ‘travelled’ around the world in the company of Tintin and his comic book adventures, thus instilling in our generations a passion for exotic places and new cultures. If, like me, you are a bit of a romantic, the lure of exotic Arabia, India, China and the lost cities of the Incas is something that has been instilled since a young age. It was through Tintin, amongst a few others, that I first discovered a passion for travel and exotic cultures long before I was able to do the real thing. Pouring over maps, I would follow Tintin as his exploits took him from his native Belgium in the heart of Europe to such romantic-sounding locations as Alexandria, Bombay and Shanghai.

Hilltop sentinels

The Iberian Peninsula is dotted with magnificent monuments of bygone days, witnesses to some of the most intriguing chapters of European history. The great event that shook this land was the Moorish conquest, initiated in 711 with the arrival of Tariq and his forces, and the subsequent Christian Reconquest that would start shortly afterwards and culminate with the retaking of Granada in 1492. After that date Spain became the unified nation state we know today, but for centuries it was a frontier land of competing kingdoms that played out their rivalries against the dominating background of the Christian-Moorish pas de deux. In this battle for land the castle played a central role, as both sides safeguarded their territory with countless fortresses.

The tailored revolution

Like a velvet revolution, a seamless new movement is making its presence felt in the upper echelons of men’s couture. Savile Row, the bastion of tailored quality, is being challenged by a new generation of couturiers that revive old-fashioned skills whilst creating exciting new designs. Oscar Udeshi is one of the leading lights of this new direction in men’s fashion. The former banker had a career that involved travel, money and great perks, yet he gave it all up to commit himself to an entirely new calling. Rather than simply join the legions of designer wannabes, this economics and philosophy graduate really had something to say, and it’s a message that is helping to revitalise London’s luxury men’s fashion sector.

Cirque du Soleil, an ethereal experience

To experience the Cirque du Soleil is to embark upon a sensory voyage in which one is transported to another world where gravity seems to have no hold and shapes, colours and sound blend into one.Founded in Quebec in 1980, the concept has developed gradually, absorbing elements from across the world as it thrived and grew into a global phenomenon.

Hotel Colonna Pevero, Porto Cervo

The location of the Hotel Colonna Pevero could hardly be bettered: overlooking the azure waters of the Golfo del Pevero – an intimate indent right in the heart of Sardinia’s celebrated Costa Smeralda. From its vantage point against a gentle rise the world is a subtle blur of parkland, natural Mediterranean vegetation, beaches, coves and the stylish cluster of local architecture ranged about a particularly privileged corner of one of the most glamorous coastlines in the world.

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