Spear’s | 12 Jan 2022
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“Caroline Phillips is a tenacious and skilful writer with a flair for high quality interviewing and a knack for making things work.”
London’s best-kept skin secret is hidden behind a door in a residential street. ‘It’s so discreet,’ enthuses Joanne Evans as she welcomes Spear’s to the Holland Park flagship of Skin-Matters, the UK’s first ‘skin health house’.
It feels like an exclusive, members-only club frequented by the beauty cognoscenti. When Evans, a medical aesthetician, launched it nine months before the pandemic struck, it quickly made its way on to speed dial for celebrities. Hollywood actress Naomi Watts enjoyed her visit so much that she announced she would take Evans back to the US with her.
Coco Chanel, who never had a good word for anyone, called Cristobal Balenciaga ‘the only couturier in the truest sense of the word. The others are simply fashion designers.’
There are people who have created global businesses after doing it. Others who have seen their profits leap after attending a seminar. FTSE 100 companies that swear by its approach.
Hundreds of people are weeping and wailing for those recently deceased. They’re shrouded in white shawls over their heads, and their bodies are draped in white cloth, like exotic ghosts. They’re sitting on the ground paying their respects. This is a regular Ethiopian Orthodox Christian practice. Meanwhile, an eagle soars above in a cobalt sky.
Two crofters turn the hay by hand, beside woods of rowan, wych and grey willow. These are ancient woods and ancient people. Nearby a sign warns of bulls and calves roaming free – but you may also meet wildcats and pine martens. We’re amid bens and glens covered in bracken and purple thistles, the air heady with wild thyme.
If you own Chelsea Barracks, Qatar and Al Jazeera, what do you snap up next? Private Greek islands, of course. Ones that are just two miles from Ithaca.
In May, Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa, emir of Qatar, bought six uninhabited islands including Oxia – the largest at 1,200 acres and approximately 20 nautical miles from Meganisi – for a mere £7.35 million.
Alexandros Matsukis, director, founder, co-owner of Ionian & Aegean Island Holidays, provides a close-up of the region. His tour operator company has been renting out villas there since 2002 and is now the undisputed market leader on the sort of islands for which the big boys are gunning.
I’m not ordinarily a fan of Bangkok – too much heat, too many knockoffs – but then there’s the Sukhotai hotel. Yes it’s surrounded by high-rise buildings in one of the noisiest and most traffic-choked cities in the world. But stop a while – inside, it’s pure orchid filled Zen and The Art of Hotel Living. Plus it offers something that’s as rare as a paragliding saffron-robed monk: it’s a resort hotel set calmly in the centre of the city.
A former Barclays Bank branch has been reborn as the Chuan Spa in the grand 19th-century Langham Hotel, London. Now that the money men have gone, the spa has settled prettily in a brilliant spot on Portland Place – directly opposite Broadcasting House, the iconic home of the BBC, and just a few Louboutin-shod steps from Bond Street and even more exclusive Mount Street.
I’m not ordinarily a fan of Bangkok – too much heat, too many knockoffs – but then there’s the Sukhotai hotel. Yes it’s surrounded by…
The year may have been humbling for many of the hedge-fund industry’s biggest stars and other experienced investors and traders. Many have found it hard…
If you’re going to pay a flying visit to the hotspots of East Africa, then by golly do it in a helicopter.