Connecting our Clients to the Lifestyle of their dreams – A LOOK AT THANKSGIVING CELEBRATIONS AROUND THE WORLD

Thanksgiving is almost here, offering a chance to spend time with loved ones and reflect on all that you are thankful for. We typically think of Thanksgiving as a uniquely American holiday, but there’s actually a long tradition of harvest-time celebrations in many parts of the world. Enjoy a look at how Germany, China, the United Kingdom, Canada, the Jewish culture, Brazil and Ghana celebrate the holiday.

Or call us at 214.769.2142 and let’s chat about other Thanksgiving ideas.

Germany: Erntedankfest

The German harvest celebration is observed in September or October. The day begins with church services, a parade with music and a Thanksgiving procession in which a traditional “harvest crown” is presented to the harvest queen (Erntekönigin). The day continues with music, dancing and food with the unused food being distributed to those in need. In some places, there is also an evening service with a lantern and torch parade and fireworks for the children.

China: “Chung Ch’ui” Moon Festival

China’s Mid-Autumn Moon Festival is celebrated with families gathering on the 15th day of the eighth lunar cycle. Chung Ch’ui is the most celebrated Chinese holiday and lasts for three days with a feast of mooncakes filled with sesame seeds, ground lotus seeds, and duck eggs. The mooncake’s center is filled with a salty yolk to represent the full moon. Families and friends often exchange them as a sign of unity and peace.

United Kingdom Harvest Festival

The Harvest Festival is one of the oldest known traditions in the UK. The tradition began with Saxon farmers offering the first cut sheaf of corn and a sacrificial animal to one of their fertility gods to ensure a prosperous harvest.  Today, the English celebrate by making corn dolls and a meal featuring the season’s produce. Children will take fruit and vegetable gifts to churches and schools for the elderly and those in need.

Canadian Thanksgiving

Canadian Thanksgiving is very similar to the U.S., but takes place on the second Monday in October due to an earlier harvest season. The first Canadian Thanksgiving was celebrated prior to the Pilgrims arrival in Plymouth, Massachusetts. Typical traditions include decorating churches, a Thanksgiving feast, a holiday parade, watching football and of course turkey is a must.

The Jewish Harvest Festival, Sukkot

In the Jewish culture, families celebrate Sukkot. This is the last of the harvest festivals following Passover and Shavuot. The festival has been celebrated for 3,000 years by building a hut of branches called a Sukkot. Jewish families eat their meals beneath the Sukkot under the night sky for eight days. The ancient Egyptians participated in a harvest festival in honor of Min, the god of vegetation and fertility. Parades, music and sports were a part of the festivities.

Brazil: Day of Thanksgivings

Established in 1949 and known as “Dia de Acao de Gracas”, a day of Thanksgivings, after the ambassador of Brazil was inspired by a visit to the U.S. Similar to the U.S. the festivities take place on the fourth Thursday of November, but it isn’t an official holiday, so not all Brazilians participate. A typical holiday meal consists of turkey and stuffing with accompanying dishes such as mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, corn stuffing, and pumpkin pie enjoyed with family and friends.

Ghana’s Homowo, or Yam Festival

Celebrated in between May and August in Accra, a coastal region of Ghana, yams are essential to their festivities. Yams are a major crop in Ghana and commemorate a period of famine in the region’s history. Everyone wears multi-colored togas and dances with a large feast taking place with traditional yam dishes.

Connecting our Clients to the Lifestyle of their dreams – THE BEST POP-UP HOLIDAY HOTELS AND BARS!

Hotels and bars are transforming as the holiday season is upon us. Escape to a charming winter wonderland filled with treats, impressive décor, luxury amenities and so much more. From New York City to Scottsdale, Arizona to London and Paris you will be left in the best of holiday spirits.

Fairmont Scottsdale Princess Hotel in Scottsdale, Arizona

Celebrate the splendor of the season in Scottsdale with holiday festivities galore. Enjoy a romantic skate around the ice rink and curl up by the rink side fire pits. Explore the three million LED lights as you stroll through the resort’s majestic lagoons via the princess express trains. Wander through the Nativity Garden and enjoy a variety of shows at the Enchanted Plaza.

Baita at Eataly in New York City

Delight in this one-of-a-kind Italian Alps pop-up restaurant while dining in a cute cabin. Maintaining a cozy feel, the rooftop bar is enclosed by a retractable roof with heaters throughout. Views of the city skyline will take your breath away as you enjoy delicious tastes from northern Italy like Barolo-braised hearty beef shanks, rustic polenta, house made sausage and mulled wine.

The Gingerbread Cabin at York & Albany in London

Gordon Ramsey’s York & Albany Hotel offers gingerbread house décor with a seasonal menu of the finest dishes around, naturally pulling inspiration from the storybook itself. Complete with venison croquettes and the Gingerbread Espresso cocktail, a blend of gingerbread-infused vodka, L’Orange, Kalhua, amaretto and espresso. A joy for all foodies alike.

Danico’s Christmas Miracle in Paris

Danico has joined the small group of “Miracle Bars” initially inspired by the Manhattan pop-up bar Christmas tradition for the 2016 edition of Miracle of 9th Street. The eggnog party at Danico is unforgettable with handcrafted creamy cognac cocktails to get you in the Christmas spirit. Not to mention it’s in Paris. Paris, the holidays is surely a memorable treat!

Would you like more information? Just reach out and let’s chat! Call me at 214-769-2142.

Connecting our Clients to the Lifestyle of their Dreams – It’s Holiday Season! Pamper Your Party Guests With The Finest Offerings!

Cheeze Wizz on crackers and onion dip with potato chips fuel many low budget parties, but your guests expect the sophistication of fine offerings elegantly presented and served. Following are some suggestions that raise the bar on luxury and will be sure to please your guests:

FINE WINE 

A wine that has reached its peak of maturity offers nuances and textures a young wine cannot achieve. An old, fine wine is a sure party-pleaser that illustrates your elegant taste. No old wine should be opened until it is brilliantly clear, and the sediment has completely settled. So be sure to order these wines well in advance of the party. A bottle of old red wine can take two or three weeks to settle after it is delivered. Keep it in a cool, dark place.

According to Food and Wine, some of the best older vintages include 1999 and 2001 Red Bordeaux, 2001 and 2003 Red Burgandy, 1996 and 1998 Barolo, 1999 and 2002 Napa Cabernet Sauvignon, and 1993 and 2002 German Riesling. Reported as “outstanding” are 1999 Mondavi Private Reserve Napa Valley Cabernet and 1993 Forstmeister Geltz Zilliken Spätlese Riesling.

Uncorking the wine will often involve removing an old cork, and the wrong corkscrew can plunge pieces of cork into a prized bottle. Food and Wine recommends the Corkfish wine cork retriever, which is available from Amazon. Decant most red wines about two to three hours before serving. However, if the wine is twenty or more years old, decant immediately before serving because the amazing aromas and flavors quickly vanish.

CAVIAR

Serve caviar in the original container on top of ice. Do not use silver spoons, which may affect the taste. Mother-of-Pearl spoons are elegant servers. Garnishes can include chopped onions, hardboiled egg, chives, dill, crème fraiche, and lemon wedges. Be sure the crackers are top of the line, crispy, and fresh. You can also serve caviar with freshly buttered toast points. Beluga is the rarest and most desirable caviar, a coveted delicacy, but it has an acquired taste. Orange or red salmon caviar has larger pieces and a more subtle flavor. White sturgeon caviar is very salty with milder fish flavor. If most of your guests have a sophisticated palette, go for the Beluga. Otherwise, offer milder caviar along with Beluga.


TRUFFLES

There over 60 varieties of truffle. The Italian white truffle is one of the most sought after and highly regarded. This fungus that is worth its weight in gold is an elegant addition to a party. Truffle cones are elegant, tasty finger foods. Twist thinly sliced, cured bresaola into cones and fill with arugula, shaved cheese, a spread of truffles, and serve with lemon wedges. Put a half teaspoon of truffles on deviled eggs. The best way to use truffles is in eggs, cream, and butter. They lose their taste quickly when combined with other ingredients, so plan ingredients and cooking times accordingly. Serve as soon as possible after preparing.


FINE AND RARE SPIRITS

To help you chose the finest spirits for your guests, Forbes suggests the following among others:

  • Auchentoshan American Oak, Scotch Whisky is smooth and light with notes of vanilla and caramelized sugar and a bit of spice;
  • Hibiki 12 & 17, Japanese Blended Whisky. Japanese spirits have become increasingly available and desirable, and they are receiving an increasing number of global awards, including the world’s best whiskey;
  • George Dickel Rye Whiskey differs from similar bourbon because of a final charcoal filtering that removes taste impurities;
  • Bowmore Small Batch Single Malt, Scotch Whisky has the traditional Islay character without overpowering the palate. Tropical fruit flavors and a rum-like note make it different from most spirits on the market today;
  • Green Spot, Irish Single Pott is rare and prized and made in the traditional copper pot still instead of large, commercial stills;
  • Midleton Very Rare, Irish Blend won the Double Gold at the San Francisco International Spirits Competition. The triple-distilled whiskeys are aged in bourbon casks that are more than 12 years old.
  • Balblair, Single Malt Scotch Whisky is smooth, rich and full-bodied. Spirits’ Expert Larry Olmsted calls it “perhaps the greatest hidden gem in the world of Scotch.”

The most expensive spirits you may wish to serve discerning guests may run your home bar tab into the tens of thousands. Click here to see the most expensive bottles on the market today and select your favorite(s). Hint: it is mostly Scotch. Prices range from $3,500 to $50,000. The Balvenie 50-Year-Old Single Malt Scotch Whisky, Speyside tops the list, but your guests will not feel diminished when served the $4,000 Bunnahabhain Limited Edition 40-Year-Old Single Malt Scotch Whisky, Islay.


CIGARS

The top five cigars of 2018 include The Wise Man Maduro Robusto, Padrón Family Reserve No. 44 (Natural), H. Upmann Sir Winston. Arturo Fuente Hemingway Work of Art, JFR Lunatic Habano Short Robusto, and Olivia Serie V Melanio Churchill. Invite your cigar smoking guests to a separate area with comfortable conversation area seating, abundant ashtrays, low light, a fire if possible, and enjoy their appreciation of your thoughtful hospitality.

Please your guests with these lavish treats at your next dinner party and relax knowing you are providing the finest.

Would you like more information – just reach out and let’s chat:  214.769.2142.

Connecting our Clients to the Lifestyle of their Dreams – ALLURE OF THE SECOND HOME: WHY AFFLUENT BUYERS ARE DISPLAYING CONFIDENCE IN RESORT MARKETS

The potential market for luxury property has never been bigger.

In our most recent research report, The Allure of the Second Home: Why Affluent Buyers are Displaying Confidence in Resort Markets, we explore the current state of the second home market, as it relates to the affluent consumer, focusing on the top 10% and above income earners in 26 countries, who are in the market to buy or sell a second or vacation home in the next three years.

Who is Considering Buying and Selling?

Buyers, age 40 and younger, are taking over the luxury second home market, but lack the experience of Gen X and Boomers

Luxury second home buyers and sellers have similar demographic profiles in terms of age, geography, education and professional status. As a result, their financial profiles are similar, with the only noticeable difference being that sellers have slightly higher asset levels.

Interestingly, this group has notably high assets for their age. About half of the qualified consumer market is under the age of 40, yet their aspirations for purchase are in the millions of dollars.

For most, this is not their first time purchasing a second home—the average number of residences is over three and 14% own at least five residences currently. Driven not by the Millennial group, but rather by Gen X and Boomers. Of Gen X luxury second home buyers, 17% have more than five homes, along with 19% of Boomers in this buyer group.

Current State of the Resort and Second Home Market

Affluent consumers are in acquisition mode

Those who are in the market to purchase a luxury second home are adding to their portfolio and unlikely to sell their existing second home at the moment—thus there are more buyers than sellers. Interestingly too, this means that sellers are also buyers, but buyers are not necessarily sellers.

LPI_AllureOfTheSecondHome_TotalGlobalAffluent

Buyers show more confidence in the market than sellers. More than half of buyers believe that now is a good time to purchase a second home, while relatively few think it is a good time to sell. As noted previously, these consumers are quite savvy when it comes to homeownership; 76% own two or more properties currently.

LPI_AllureOfTheSecondHome_GlobalWealthTrend

What are Second-Home Buyers Looking for?

Wellness is the New Luxury

Affluent consumers have begun living with wellness in mind and this also influences the second home market. In fact, 96% take at least one aspect of wellness seriously as part of their daily routine. Beyond physical and emotional wellness, which most affluent consumers focus on, luxury buyers are keen to improve their intellectual, social and even spiritual wellness.

Amenities that address these needs are sought by buyers and especially resort and second home buyers because of a growing demand for communities that take a holistic approach to overall wellness.

The Bottom Line

With more buyers than sellers, the demand for second homes is keeping home values high for luxury properties. Younger buyers are becoming more prominent, currently making up nearly half of the market, however, older generations have more experience buying second homes. Multiple residences, as well as customized experiences, including wellness amenities becoming a priority.

Would you like more information – just reach out and let’s chat:  214.769.2142

Connecting our Clients to the Lifestyle of their Dreams – THE LATEST HOME DECOR TRENDS FOR 2019

LOOK at this!  Whether you are looking to overhaul your space or simply change a few accents to update your favorite room, we have researched some of the hottest trends to help you modernize your favorite room. Take a look at some of our favorite home décor trends and get inspired to update your abode.

Antique Pieces

ANTIQUE PIECES

These pieces are trending in the design space in a big way. Incorporate an antique into your living or dining room area for an interesting conversation piece.


Pop of Color

ADD A POP OF COLOR

Update a space with a rich pop of color for fall. Pinks and greens are go-to colors for many but for a bold statement, incorporate rich reds in pillows, curtains or furnishings.


Embrace Orange

EMBRACE ORANGE

Fall’s staple color orange has been an accent color for years and now, it is coming into its own. For a daring change, try orange walls or flooring in your space.


Bold Biophilia

BOLD BIOPHILIA

Embrace the outdoors with a biophilic design in your home. Incorporate plants or highlight your garden area to bring the outdoors in.

To stay abreast of the latest trends in home decor, travel and more subscribe to CLo & DLo.

Connecting our Clients to the Lifestyle of their Dreams – LUXURY HOMES DESIGNED BY FAMED ARCHITECTS

Often, homes crafted by notable architects are revered by owners who appreciate excellent craftsmanship. Many famous architects like Frank Lloyd Wright and Donald Olsen, have designed beautiful homes that are admired by modern architects and artists. These homes showcase some of the creations from some of the most famous architects around the world.

Contact us for more information:  214.769.2142 or click here

Web ID: UVIT

A FRANK LLOYD WRIGHT MASTERPIECE

NEW CANAAN, CONNECTICUT | US $7,200,000

Tirranna was designed by famed architect, Frank Lloyd Wright in 1955. Frank Lloyd Wright is known as one of the greatest architects of the 20th Century and designed more than 1,000 structures during his career. The unique mid-century home hosts 7-bedrooms and 8 and one-half baths near the Noroton River. Unique accents in the home include glass walls, classic wood finishes and gold leaf chimneys. The space also has a tennis court, a pool and access to sculpture paths through the woods that lead to the nearby river. Web ID: UVIT


Web ID: MRFD

DR. FRANK GEHRY’S CONTEMPORARY DESIGN

SUNSET STRIP, CALIFORNIA | US $4,899,000

Awe inspiring design can be found at each turn in this contemporary space located just north of the sunset strip. Designed by legendary architect Frank Gehry, this home has several spaces for relaxing and entertaining guests including a pool and a nearby terrace. Inside, an expansive master suite envelops the entire second floor of the home and features picturesque windows peering out to magnificent ocean views. Web ID: MRFD


Web ID: TPDQ

LUDWIG MIES VAN DER ROHE’S MINIMALIST LUXURY

HAGEN, GERMANY | PRICE AVAILABLE UPON REQUEST

This breathtaking modern home was built after the original plans by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, a pioneer of contemporary architecture. Modern accents including floor to ceiling windows and clean white walls can be found throughout the space. The master suite on the first floor has and en-suite bathroom and access to a terrace. Additional amenities include an outdoor garden, pool and sauna and a double garage with home access. Web ID: TPDQ


Web ID: EUOC

THE DONALD AND HELEN OLSEN HOUSE

BERKELEY, CALIFORNIA | US $1,795,000

Designed by architect Donald Olsen, the Olsen house is listed in the National Register of Historic places. This striking 3-bedroom is positioned to complement its natural surroundings. The “crystal box” structure of the home provides great views of the nearby greenery, and in some areas, thrusts out toward the trees surrounding the space. Additional amenities in the home include expansive storage space, a painting studio, and an entryway featuring an original mural by artist Claire Falkenstein. Web ID: EUOC

Connecting our Clients to the Lifestyle of their Dreams – EVENTS FOR HORSE ENTHUSIASTS

Whether you are a regular at the stables or just enjoy watching races, there are several events around the world catering to horse aficionados. Take a look at a few of our favorite equestrian events and get inspired to book your next trip.

Want more information on other FAB events?  Let’s Chat – 214.769.2141 or click here

Equestricon

EQUESTRICON

Horse racing’s only fan convention, Equestricon, welcomes horse lovers from around the world for special events, panels and more in the realm of Thoroughbred racing. In 2018, the convention spanned two days and included a meet and greet for trainers, a racehorse retraining seminar and an introduction to thoroughbred horse ownership for beginners. The 2019 dates for Equestricon have not been announced, but fans can follow the event on social media to learn more. equestricon.com


Salamander Resort & Spa

SALAMANDER RESORT AND SPA

Located in the heart of horse country, Middleburg, Virginia, this 168-room property has equestrian facilities including an outdoor riding area and several secluded trails. The resort is ideal for new and advanced riders with classes available to guests from May through October. Adding to the spa and wellness elements of the resort, the facility also offers yoga classes and spa treatments for guests. salamanderresort.com


The Winter Equestrian Festival

THE WINTER EQUESTRIAN FESTIVAL

Each year, The Winter Equestrian Festival is held in Wellington, Florida and offers competitions for junior, adult amateur and professional riders in 70 divisions. It is the longest-running equestrian competition in the world. Participants from 2 to 70 years old compete in a 3-month long competition showcasing the best riders from around the world. pbiec.coth.com