How Societies Become Consumer Cultures Through Housing

Alfred Marshall’s (Principles of Economics, 1891) view of housing still goes right to the heart of what makes housing and built environment an important anthropological topic. No artifact is so clearly multi-functional, simultaneously a utilitarian object of absolute necessity, and an item of symbolic material culture, a text of almost unending complexity.

In every house the economic, social and symbolic dimensions of behavior come together. This may be why the analysis of housing has had such a wide appeal in disciplines as diverse as social psychology, folklore, economics and engineering. Anthropologists themselves have shown a new willingness to consider the house as a key artifact in understanding the articulation of economic and social change during economic development.

An ethnocentric home.

From the perspective of our own contemporary society, surrounded by houses of all shapes and sizes, where wealth and luxury are synonymous with housing, this seems obvious and commonplace. The 1980’s television show “Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous” and journals like “Architectural Review” are odes to the home as a shrine and symbol of wealth. But just as clearly, there are societies where all the houses look alike, even though all the people are not alike. Perhaps then, the assumption that there is something natural and obvious about spending on the house and home market as a marker of prestige is ethnocentric. Why the house instead of something else?

A number of anthropological approaches attempt to place the house in a theoretical context which answer this question by relating housing to social, economic, and psychological variation and change. For example, a utilitarian approach that views the house partially as a workspace links changes in the elaboration of houses to changes in the kinds of work done in the household (Braudel 1973:201). Or if the house is seen as a reflection of how all household activities are organized and divided, then the shape of the house will change as activities are modified, differentiated, or recombined (Kent 1983, 1984).

Utilitarian houses.

An even more utilitarian perspective relates the form of the house to climate, technology and the kinds of building materials that are available (Duly 1979).  For the Silo, Richard R. Wilk.

Read here and read the full PDF document on your device.

Supplemental- Complete Text  Principles of Economics (London: Macmillan and Co. 8th ed. 1920).
Author: Alfred Marshall
About This Title: This is the 8th edition of what is regarded to be the first “modern” economics textbook, leading in various editions from the 19th into the 20th century. The final 8th edition was Marshall’s most-used and most-cited.

Naja Lingerie From Colombia Combats Industry Control

Building a business is one of the hardest things to do, especially when one is trying to build a business bigger than Victoria’s Secret, who owns 50 percent of the lingerie industry. But, Catalina Girald, founder of Naja Lingerie is setting out to do just that.

Going for Soul Not Sex - changing the lingerie industry one pair at a time : Inside Naja Lingerie by Catalina Girald
Going for Soul Not Sex – changing the lingerie industry one pair at a time : Inside Naja Lingerie by Catalina Girald

Headquartered in Medellin, Colombia, with offices in San Francisco and New York, Catalina found a niche in the already dominated lingerie industry. Having worn Victoria’s Secret for most of her life it was when she became a professional that she started to see that the highly popular brand overly sexualized women. As a business woman, Catalina no longer felt comfortable wearing such lingerie and decided to design her own. “My aim is beyond making high-quality bras and panties. I want to create a lifestyle brand. I see it as the Athleta of what happens in your bedroom and bath.”

Her mission to create an alternative lingerie brand for women has a long journey ahead, but Catalina remains focused. Seeing beyond the needs of women and staying in tune with the digital force of today’s society, Ms. Girald’s small yet powerful brand, Naja Lingerie is changing the game in more ways than one. With quotes printed inside each of the panties, designed to empower women and the brand going completely e commerce, Naja lingerie is for women who want to be radically different. Never forgetting the core of her mission, the company’s Underwear for Hope program donates a percentage of purchases to the Golondrinas Foundation in Medellin, where Girald was born. The foundation teaches impoverished women, skills such as sewing which allows them to support their families. They sew the wash-bags that come with each Naja purchase.

Each collection is inspired by the founder’s travels around the world. From living with nomads in Mongolia to learning about the weaving process in Indonesia and living amongst the Hmong people in Vietnam, Catalina’s 18 month spiritual journey throughout Asia brought ideas and life to Naja lingerie. It wasn’t always that way for Catalina who was once at the top of her career as an attorney over at Skadden Arps, one of the most prestigious law firms in the country. Looking to create something greater, Catalina Girald started attending the acclaimed New York’s Fashion Institute of Technology–literally sneaking off to classes in between meetings at Skadden.  Ultimately, she left Skadden to pursue her MBA at Stanford University where the Colombian born entrepreneur founded one of the first venture-funded fashion sites (MOXSIE) for independent designers which was later acquired.

Catalina Lingerie

Introducing Naja, the inventive online lingerie brand that speaks volumes

Naja, a digitally driven, forward-thinking innovator in the lingerie industry, has officially launched to rave reviews. Naja, billed as the “radically different, thoughtful lingerie brand for smart, courageous and sexy women”, was pioneered by Colombian-born CEO, Catalina Girald. No stranger to the fashion and technology industries, Catalina founded MOXSIE, one of the first venture-funded fashion sites for independent designers which was later sold to Naja is a breath of fresh air in an industry that hasn’t changed appreciably in decades. When asked about the direction of the new firm, Founder Catalina Girald answered, “We celebrate strong women. We’ve done away with fans blowing fake wind into our models’ hair, and old, dated lingerie designs. Our fresh designs, pricing and mission to empower women are challenging the industry, and we’re building the first billion-dollar online lingerie brand for the next generation woman.”

Today, women looking for fashionable bras under $80 [US dollars]  have limited choices, including Victoria’s Secret. However, a growing number of shoppers have expressed dissatisfaction with the mass retailer, citing a lack of innovative designs, low construction quality, and environmental impact amongst their concerns. Naja changes all of that.   The company offers exclusive designs paired with the highest quality of fabrics, placing significant focus on structural changes and better product design. Features reserved almost exclusively for luxury lingerie, such as breathable memory foam cups and ultrasonic sealed straps, are now being brought to consumers at fair prices. Naja uses Peruvian sourced Pima cotton for the softest feel and intelligent fabrics with odor and sweat wicking properties for real women with performance needs, all while remaining health and eco-conscious by using no phthalate materials and water based dyes.

The capsule collection, inspired by Tattoos and Japanese Shunga, consists of a basic line and three groups including “The Secret Lives of Sparrows”, “One Night in Cashmere”, and “Miyoko Loves a Dragon”. The collection is characterized by innovative and surprising prints on the interior of all the bra cups, so that every woman can carry her own little secret. All of the fabrics are exclusively designed for Naja by a local San Francisco Tattoo artist and are individually hand printed making each piece slightly unique. In keeping with Catalina’s vision of making great design accessible, the collection is fairly priced with bras ranging from [US dollars ] $45 to $70 and panties ranging from $12 to $22.

Perhaps the most interesting thing about Naja is the company’s dedication to changing women’s lives. Through Naja’s Underwear for Hope program, the company donates a percentage of profits to training women in the poorest and most violent areas of the world to sew. Naja then employs them so that they can help themselves and their children. With each purchase of Naja, consumers can feel good knowing that they are contributing to changing a woman’s life.   To learn more about the company’s lingerie, social mission or what sets Naja apart from others in the industry, visit .


WatchBox App By Govberg Curates And Helps Source Watches

In 2016, consumers spent an estimated $14.3 USD billion on gifts for Father’s Day alone, not to mention billions more on gifts for other occasions like birthdays and winter holidays. Traditional “guy gifts” include things like power tools and sporting event tickets. However, if you’re looking for a quintessential men’s gift that’s truly timeless, then you may want to turn to the WatchBox by Govberg app for an assist with what to get for the deserving dudes in your life.

This apt app serves as a resource for locating the exact gift-able watch he’s sure to love. Or, if you also enjoy beautiful timepieces, then this app can help you discover what’s currently available in the marketplace. Whether for yourself or as a gift for another, WatchBox by Govberg is an elegant and streamlined way to curate collection-worthy watches—something the folks behind this app know a great deal about. Established a century ago, Govberg Jewelers is a premier purveyor of luxury timepieces, known for their unrivaled offerings that include limited-production models by leading watchmakers; an extensive pre-owned inventory; and decidedly service-minded industry experts.

The app offers several different features a true timepiece enthusiast will find useful. This includes access to up-to-date news from the watch world. This information is gathered in real-time from all over the globe, aggregating and delivering articles and video reviews from a myriad of popular blogs and magazines devoted to Swiss watches, including all of the industry’s leading brands.

Users can also discover the worth of different watches. Whether you want to sell a watch, buy a new or pre-owned model, make a trade, or are just curious about what a new or used (secondary market) watch you own is currently selling for, the WatchBox by Govberg app boasts pricing tools like a database packed with information on over 80,000 watch models. This includes a 12-month price history for each. With this foundational and in-depth knowledge base, you can intelligently buy, sell, and trade luxury timepieces and generally communicate with other users—or even Govberg’s own watch buying experts—right from the app.

Danny Govberg

The advent of this app’s secondary market watch pricing tools, in particular, is significant. According to Danny Govberg, CEO of Govberg Jewelers, “Prior to the WatchBox by Govberg app, dialogue about the value of pre-owned watches wasn’t addressed elsewhere in a consistent, transparent manner; nor was it designed to support and educate the consumer. While manufacturers establish MSRPs for primary (new) watches, there was no resource, no Kelley Blue Book or Zillow, for the pre-owned, or secondary, market watch category to help consumers feel at ease.  That changes with this app…For the first time in the watch category, Govberg is providing transparency into what pieces trade for on the secondary, or pre-owned, market.”

Quite fascinating is the proprietary algorithm the app uses to estimate and compute market value. Govberg explains, “It evaluates historical and active sales records spanning the secondary market–online sales platforms, auction sales and Govberg’s own data. The data represents final sales to end users, and is not an appraisal nor offer to buy, but rather an educated starting point to assess the secondary market value of a particular model. All pricing makes assumptions on the quality, service history and completeness of a timepiece with original box and paperwork. The data strength takes into account the number of data points captured, the variability of the prices seen on the secondary market, how current the data is and the quality of the source/vendor within the market.”

Impressively, this app will even store information and photos of your existing watch collection. This can be a useful tool to keep up with warranties, service history and to maintain a record for insurance purposes. Also of practical use, you can even schedule watch maintenance and repairs from within the app.

According to Govberg, “As more customers see watch ownership less about having a time-telling device and more as a hobby for collecting the world’s most intricate instruments, WatchBox by Govberg supports the growing watch enthusiast with instant access to valuable information so he can make the best decisions to begin, grow, trade or sell his collection.”

Relative to gift-giving, instead of spending hours upon hours hunting for an idea in general—or for a specific timepiece—that the recipient might like, you can simply turn to this easy-to-use tech. You’ll save time, money and the guesswork often involved in finding the perfect present for those “special someones.”

Govberg perhaps summarizes the usefulness of this technology best, noting, “Whether you want to keep up on the latest industry news and product releases, manage your watch collection for social sharing or insurance purposes, or buy, sell or trade a new or pre-owned watch, WatchBox by Govberg is the ultimate toolbox for today’s watch collector.”

The free WatchBox by Govberg app is available for download for iOS devices on the App Store and Android devices in the Play Store.

For The Silo, By Merilee Kern, ‘The Luxe List’ Executive Editor.

As the Executive Editor and Producer of “The Luxe List,” Merilee Kern is an internationally-regarded consumer product trends expert and hospitality industry voice of authority–a travel, dining, leisure and lifestyle expert who spotlights noteworthy marketplace innovations, change makers, movers and shakers. She identifies and reports on exemplary travel destinations and experiences, extraordinary events and newsworthy products and services across all categories. Reach her online at, on Twitter at, on Facebook at and on Instagram at

***Some or all of the accommodations(s), experience(s), item(s) and/or service(s) detailed above may have been provided or sponsored at no cost to accommodate this review, but all opinions expressed are entirely those of Merilee Kern and have not been influenced in any way.***


Featured image & all photos courtesy of  Govberg Watches.

VieVité Cotes de Provence Is Ideal French Rosé Wine For A Hot Weather Day

For many people, an ideal Victoria Day in Canada or Memorial Day in America depends on two essential things: SUN and BOOZE. VieVité’s Rosé #ROSEALLDAY is the weekend’s beach towel, boat, or post-brunch bag’s best friend. I mean.. is there really another way to kick off Summer celebrations?

“Perfectly pale pink. That perfectly chilled, hot weather day rosé is the ultimate dream.” – Women everywhere.

NEW YORK – The acclaimed Côtes de Provence region in France has long been known for its exceptional climate, soil and as the world leader in the production of premium rosé wines. VieVité (pronounced Vee-Veetay) is created at Domaine Sainte Marie, a renowned vineyard dating back to the 18th century and known for its true expressions of Provencal Rosé wine.
Located just 21 kilometers west of Saint Tropez, Domaine Sainte Marie stretches over 45 hectares of land; with bountiful southern exposure and land rich in filterable siliceous soil containing michaschists, schists, and white quartz, adding to the depth and quality of VieVité Rosé. Year after year, Domaine Sainte Marie receives critical acclaim and industry award recognition for its consistently excellent wines, which benefit from the soft gradient slopes, and hot, dry days and cool summer nights.

As one of the leading wines within the esteemed portfolio of Turquoise Life Beverage Brands, VieVité is offered in two varietals: the fresh and delicate VieVité and the limited cask VieVité Extraordinaire, sourced from older, time-tested vines. Both exceptional expressions of Provencal Rosé wine pride themselves on their unique vinicultural history, with the wines exemplifying the rare and old Grenache vines from which they are harvested.

VieVité is produced from grapevines averaging 25 years old, and offers a fresh and delicate aroma of cherries and strawberries coupled with notes of spice to create a satisfying sensation on the palate with a forward fruit nose of peach, grape and apricot.

VieVité Extraordinaire is sourced from 80-year grapevines and produced in smaller quantities, capturing the attention of true rosé connoisseurs for its opulent fruit flavors and exuberant panache. This deliciously vibrant Rosé delights with its intense and well- balanced fruit flavors, dominant with strawberries and berries, and structured with an intensity that highlights the old vines it is made from. Both wines have been declared as exceptional examples of true Cotes De Provence Rosé by wine lovers and critics alike.

Rosé wine has been gaining in popularity in the U.S. each year as more and more new wine drinkers are educated about the production methods used to make it; how the process of allowing the red skins of the grapes to macerate for a shortened amount of time gives it its signature hue. Not to be confused with the similarly colored White Zinfandel wine of years past, true Rosé wines are absent of an overly sweet taste, which allows their quality and flavors to shine.

Turquoise Life Beverage Brands offers both VieVité and VieVité Extraordinaire across the United States in fine restaurants & bars, luxury resorts and hotels as well as wine boutiques. VieVité is also available internationally in the Netherlands, Turkey, and Greece.

Whether paired with a brunch, dinner, an ocean breeze, a poolside lounge, yachting or barbequing, VieVité is an ideal choice — any day — and all day. For the Silo, Jessica Kirk.

How To Mix Award Winning 750$ USD Luxury Margarita For Cinco De Mayo

Bottoms Up! Award-winning Miami Mixologist Josue Gonzalez from DÔA Miami Beach (2000 Collins Avenue, Miami Beach) has created an over-the-top luxury margarita specifically for those looking to take their Cinco de Mayo to the next level:  $750 USD for one, $1000 USD for the pair, $2500 USD for table service.

Crafted with luxury in mind, the Allaire Royal Gold Margarita at DÔA features premium Allaire Collection Privee Tequila. Served in a Waterford Crystal Margarita Glass, rimmed with hand-harvested Sal de Ibiza Fleur de Sel, garnished with 24K Gold Flakes and 24K Gold encrusted lime wedge – The experience with the World’s Most Opulent Margarita doesn’t end when the lucky guest leaves DÔA — purchase price includes all the materials used to create the cocktail including:  Waterford Crystal Margarita Glass(es), 24K Thai Elephant Gold Leaf for the lime, a silver-plated serving platter, gold plated mixing spoon and gold plated straws.

*Available only on Cinco de Mayo!

Allaire Royal Gold Margarita:

3 oz. Allaire Collection Privee Tequila
1 ½ oz. Fresh squeezed premium lime juice
1 oz. Grand Marnier Cuvee du Centenaire – 100 Year Anniversary
Shaken over purified spring ice,

Strained into a 24k Gold plated Shaker,

Coat half the crystal glass rim with hand-harvested Sal de Ibiza Fleur de Sel
Pour into Waterford Crystal Margarita Glass
Garnish 24K Thai Elephant Gold Leaf coated lime slice
Served on silver plated platter with gold plated mixing spoon and gold plated straws
Allaire Royal Gold Margarita is available at DÔA in South Beach for $750 for one, $1000 for pair and $2500 as table side service leaving plenty of margarita to share!

Parc natural de ses Salines d’Eivissa.

Sal de Ibiza Fleur de Sel:  For over 2,700 years, a sea-salt of premium quality has been harvested in the saline fields on the Mediterranean island of Ibiza. The island’s inhabitants have always been very proud of their marine salt, regarded as one of the best of its kind. The supreme “Queen of Salts” however, hand-harvested in the Nature Reserve of the “Parc natural de ses Salines d’Eivissa”, is the “Fleur de Sel” (Blossom of Salt). Unique in taste and texture, it is a rare and precious delicacy. The fragile “Fleur de Sel” crystals only form in conditions of abundant bright sunshine, low humidity and gentle winds. “Fleur de Sel” is exceptionally rich in vital minerals and trace-elements. It is a surprisingly mild, yet very aromatic and a tasty salt.  For the Silo, Jessica Kirk.

Q And A With Self Made Millionaire And Luxury Sommelier Noel Shu

For the high end market, there are often many different brands of similar products and services vying for attention. What are some effective ways luxury consumers can stay abreast of the newest, highest quality products and services?

This can actually be the done the good ol’ fashioned way and that’s simply to read a lot. Everything that you can possibly be looking for, think you might be looking for or not even know you’re looking for is on the Internet. Every day when I wake up, I spend a good 30 minutes and go through literally everything while I’m drinking my coffee—from international news to gossip to anything I can find that’s different from what I read before. People are out there doing everything they can to appease the people.

You are a member of a network called, “The Billionaires Club.”  What are some of the luxury brands you and your inner circle are paying attention to and what draws these brands apart?

I would say these days quite a few people have moved away from just so called “big purchases.” Everything is now more about personal touches. For instance, many people own a Rolex, Audemars Piguet or Hublot. More often than not, some of these are one out of however many but how many people really have something that’s one of kind? Not too many. The other point is that the watch may suit you but it doesn’t reflect your own personality, likes and dislikes. So what’s actually becoming quite popular is engraving one’s watches. I’ve seen some crazy designs that really add some character to a person’s wrist such as koi fish, skull heads and zodiac signs.

So back to the main question and one particular brand that has stood out is Golden Concept. Again, it’s all about personal touches these days and being unique. Golden Concept specializes in luxury cases for your phone. They have gold, snakeskin and gator cases just to name a few. All done to the highest of quality and many are customizable. So if you’re looking to stand out, make sure to check them out.

Another brand which has seen quite a bit of press and accolades is JetSmarter, one of the more successful private aviation companies. For many entrepreneurs, meetings take place in different cities, different continents and in different time zones. JetSmarter offers these services in an easy-to-maneuver application that makes flying private relatively affordable and easy.

World’s most expensive ‘whatever’: click me

What are the top three luxury items or brands that have captivated your own attention right now?

Right now there are three top brands that are top-of-mind for me right now. These are Emperada Cigar Humidor by Imperiali Geneve; Astonomia Tourbillion by Jacob & Co; and Bentley EXP 10 Speed 6 Concept car.

Not everyone can afford luxury brands. What would you suggest for those who have the desire to appear high end but not necessarily the means?

There’s actually been a lot of hype surrounding brands that cater specifically to people who enjoy the “finer things” but are limited by what’s in their wallet. Many bloggers, for instance, are always writing about the newest gadget, accessory or clothing. I would recommend finding a few that fit your style and follow them on Instagram to see what it is that they’re rocking on a day to day basis. Many people have to understand that your average blogger is there to inform the public on some of the newest fashion do’s and don’ts, and these are all done with new brands or affordable pre-existing brands.

Second, which I have seen quite a bit, is on Kickstarter or similar sites that are always offering “perks” for those who invest early in their brands. Without naming names, a few brands offered a discounted handmade Italian leather, skeleton movement watches for a fraction of the cost to the first “so many” number of investors.

Just keep in mind for everything high-end there is always a cheaper counterpart. Don’t worry just about name brand or high end. All that matters is that it looks good and makes you feel great.

For those who focus on products that are affordable luxury, who are some of the brands doing the best and what are the keys to success?

One of the biggest and most successful brands that I have seen that caters more towards the everyday luxury is Tory Burch. Although TB is for women, I have on many occasions bought it for family, friends and clients so I can safely say I have quite a bit of exposure to this brand and can thus speak with some confidence. Obviously, price point for TB is well within the means of many. Besides that, what is it that has led TB to such success? I would say three main factors: relate-ability, professionalism and seamlessness. Relate-ability in that walking through the concrete jungle that is New York, TB products have always caught my eye in their simplicity but also how stylish it is, whether on a working woman running into Starbucks or that beautiful lady going to brunch. Second, professionalism – although many brands always stress the attentiveness of the staff, it pales in comparison to TB. People have to understand that often times upper tier luxury items are for a certain group and employees are naturally prejudiced to people who they perceive not to be at that level. There have been times where I would walk into a Rolex store unattended for 15 minutes and the instant my AP peaks out from under my shirt, someone is there to help. This just doesn’t happen at TB and for that I am quite appreciative. Seamlessness in TB’s product, in that it offers just the right amount “je ne sais quoi.” Most of their products can be matched with a variety of other brands. This has all led to the tremendous success that TB has experienced over these past few years.

What are the top three factors that truly set an ultra-premium wine, champagne or spirit brand apart from less costly luxury beverage counterparts, wine and otherwise?

Marketing wine for the luxury market is a really tough job to do. Quite frankly it’s because you’re trying to appease a group of people who have seen it all. People always say when you do something for long enough, whether you want to or not you will become a bit of a connoisseur. That’s especially true for those in the wine industry. Most are well educated, well informed and have a true passion towards exploring the finer points of what’s in a wine bottle. If we were to say that all wines in the luxury market were of the same caliber, there would still be so many factors in play, the first being accessibility and quantity. Many luxury wines are such because there is a limited supply. You can’t expect a brand to sell at the same price point when there are only 10,000 bottles as compared to 100,000 bottles. However, although there are still 10,000 bottles that were produced, that doesn’t mean your everyday Joe would be able to get his hands on them even if he’s willing to dish out the necessary cash. Thus, there’s another added premium to an already sky high price.

Another example is time and care. For those who are only there to turn a quick profit, the longer time they spend on making a wine, the more money that needs to be invested. That in itself increases cost and decreases profit. This is why sometimes you have wineries that will actually keep the wine in their cellars for years after bottling to ensure that the wine has at least matured to a passable level. By care, I mean winemakers are very passionate about their craft and thus hate having their name associated with sub-par wine. Thus, you have some years where there is little to no wine produced by a certain grower because only a small amount of the grapes harvested passed the standard or none at all.

Never one to rest on his laurels and even amid a diversity of endeavors, Shu continues to raise the bar for himself professionally and personally. Whether it be as an active investor looking for the latest innovation in the luxury and tech space or, despite his jam-packed schedule, his current pursuit of an Ivy League Master’s degree at Columbia University. Clearly this good life connoisseur turned luxe market mogul will continue making an impact on the numerous high-end industries for many years to come. For the Silo, Merilee Kern. Merilee is an influential media voice and lauded communications strategist.


5 Disruptive Luxury Travel Trends Shattering The Status Quo

With the global luxury market collectively growing at 4 percent to an estimated $1.15USD (€1.08) trillion in 2016, according to a recent “Bain & Company Luxury Study,” coupled with optimistic forecasts that the luxury goods market will pick up this year, the hospitality industry is gearing up for elevated demand among both leisure and business travelers. This amid evidence that, despite widespread geopolitical uncertainties, luxury consumers are redirecting their spending toward new and more personalized high-end experiences like luxury travel, food and wine.

“The luxury market has reached a maturation point,” said Claudia D’Arpizio, lead author of the study. “Brands can no longer rely on low-hanging fruit. Instead, they really need to implement differentiating strategies to succeed going forward. We are already starting to see clear polarization when it comes to performance with winners and losers emerging across product categories and segments.”

D’Arpizio also underscored that personal luxury market brands that “take an omni-channel, customer-centric approach will rise to the top.” Such is the prevailing wisdom for both the B2C and B2B luxury travel sector, specifically, with personalized experiences, quality of service and private booking options serving as primary distinguishing factors for luxe brand positioning throughout 2017 and beyond.

Here how these key drivers will converge with evolving luxury travel trends to greatly influence various vertical sectors—and, in doing so, the marketplace at large—in the months ahead:

1. Small group cultural immersions loom large.
Group Courtesy are increasingly seeking exclusive and regionally-authentic itineraries that cater to small groups. Tour companies like Fort Washington, Pennsylvania-based Gate 1 Travel are capitalizing on this trend with offerings that provide the convenience of an escorted tour with the intimate view of local cultures that large groups just can’t provide. “Our small group tours option has seen, by far, the most significant increase in booking volume–up 50% in 2016,” the company reports.

A City Lodge Hotel Group report concurs that the trend of being “connoisseurs of local culture” will boom this year. It emphasizes that indigenous tourism experiences and cultural immersion will remain a big factor whether traveling within your own home country or jaunting to faraway lands. “We’ll see more people wanting to visit more than the big landmarks and monuments of their destination,” it says. “Rather people are more likely to be interested in knowing about the locals–those that call that place home. Trips to the rural communities will become popular, and travelers are likely to be more interested in private guides that teach them about the traditional ways of life.”

2. Private villa travel surpassing leading luxe resorts.
Today’s breed of private villa rentals have become the ultimate in luxury travel lodging for vacationers and business travelers, alike. This is due to the vast array of benefits and creature comforts it proffers for couples, families and small groups. While maximized privacy and security, uber-tailored guest service and 5-star accommodations and amenities are chief reasons the trend toward private villa lodging is exploding, an elite few have offerings far beyond that don’t just rival, but far exceed, those offered by high-end resorts, including their elite Penthouse suit options.

Courtesy Casa Dos Cisnes.jpgAccording to luxury travel agent Sandy Webb who books elite vacations all over the world “private villa residences offering first class, one-of-a-kind services are ushering in an entirely new era of bespoke hospitality around the globe. They are, in fact, single handedly setting a new and decidedly elevated standard for luxe travel worldwide.”

One private villa exemplifying this new standard is Casa Dos Cisnes–Puerto Vallarta’s foremost premier private oceanfront villa vacation experience. This  10,000 square foot Casa Dos Cisnes property, a five-bedroom colonial style home with breathtaking views of the Pacific that can accommodate up to 10 adults, goes well over-and-above to ensure each guest’s needs, desires, hopes and expectations for an extraordinary private villa vacation are fulfilled.

According to owner Cathryn Arnell, this includes proffering a bevy of premium benefits, including an authentic and stylishly-appointed residential setting, custom-prepared gourmet meals from an on-site private chef, 24/7 bilingual butler service and multiple staff, monitored security, housecleaning services, private infinity-edge ocean view pool, fully equipped state-of-the-art gym, large media-entertainment room, concierge and spa service, musicians for hire, sports and boating excursions, VIP treatment at the city’s leading beach club and most renowned restaurants, and more. “Given that guests enjoy complete privacy and security in the most exclusive area in Puerto Vallarta, commandeering the entire 10,000 square foot space with all of the relaxation, solitude and discretion that affords, the result is a one-of-a-kind holiday providing an unparalleled culinary and luxury living experience.”

3. Higher caliber private jet jaunts.
Jet Courtesy to Sergey Petrossov, founder and CEO of JetSmarter—an industry-leading private jet company based in Dubai, people are increasingly growing accustomed to personalized experiences, so much so, that it isn’t a demand anymore; it is now an expectation that needs to be met.

In order for brands to be memorable, they need to remember their customers and offer unique customized experiences. For its part, this JetSmarter achieves by placing a heavy emphasis on member relationships, with each assigned a relationship manager who is responsible for creating personalized and customizable private travel experiences.

JetSmarter also cites that there’s a very thin line between high-end and luxury, with the difference barely noticeable. “The travel industry is inundated with both high-end and luxury brands, however the distinction is relatively minor,” Petrossov said. “People often confuse high-end brands for luxury ones. Luxury brands essentially need to heighten their levels of service to be able to distinguish themselves from their high-end counterparts.”

4. Next-gen travel tech eases and expedites.
Smartphone Courtesy Intelligence (AI) is another tech trend that will continue to evolve at a rapid pace. According to Advito’s 2017 Industry Forecast, AI has already enabled a range of apps, bots and software that makes it easier for industry purveyors to interact with travelers at every step of a trip to expedite, ease and enhance. AI automates computer processes to work in the same way as the human brain. Natural language processing (NLP) helps computers understand human speech or typing, and AI then applies machine learning to provide a useful response.

Advito reveals that the travel industry is “well-positioned to embrace AI,” and also that the wider travel industry is adopting AI as, for example, KLM passengers are now able to use Facebook Messenger to confirm bookings, get boarding passes and flight status updates. “AI is still in its infancy, but it is in our immediate future,” the report asserts. “As it develops, it will help simplify complex travel decisions, shorten the buying process and deliver a more personalized offering.”

5. Game changing smart suitcases solve perennial problems.

Courtesy Diego Cespedes.Bluesmart.jpgTravel is tough enough in the best of circumstances and is all-too-often replete with challenges. From crowded freeways, overbooked flights, Wi-Fi downtime and generally not having necessary items at hand, getting from point A to point B can be fraught with more than its fair share of frustrations.  Not surprisingly, technologists have responded with problem-solving gadgets and gear that exemplify tremendous innovation and ingenuity both in concept and execution. One glowing example of this is the Bluesmart Suitcase. Billed as “the world’s first smart suitcase,” this carry-on keeps traveler’s belongings tracked, devices charged, bag secure and trips hassle-free thanks to integrated technology that syncs to an associated mobile app that’s compatible with both iPhone and Android.

The suitcase features a built-in battery/charger with 2 USB ports. The substantial 10.000 mAh battery can charge your phone up to six times, juicing up this and any other USB-connectable device from the USB port on the back or the inside. The bag also boasts a 3G+GPS tracker with global coverage to track the suitcase anywhere in the world; a scale built right into the handle that interfaces with the app to tell you the approximate weight of your suitcase; and a remote digital lock that can be set up to lock itself when you step away and to unlock when you return. The TSA- approved smart lock provides distance alerts, notifying you if you leave it behind. Of course, the bag needs to carry you belongings, so the main compartment does provide large space for clothes, shoes, and coats, while a secondary TSA-friendly compartment is able to accommodate up to a 15″ laptop.

Despite the fact that luxury sales fell flat in 2016 as consumers shunned traditional products, it’s experiences—namely travel and entertainment—that are predicted to drive sector sales growth up ahead.  “There is a progressive shift from physical products to experiences, especially in the last year,” Federica Levato, partner at Bain & Company and co-author of the study, told Reuters, predicting that trend would continue. With the world economy poised to regain momentum this year and the penchant among wealthy consumers to spend on travel and gourmet food and wine rather than clothes and accessories, the future is bright for high-end hospitality. For the Silo, Merilee Kern.

MAIN-RT-LO-Tight-2.jpgAbout the author: Branding, business and entrepreneurship success pundit, Merilee Kern, MBA, is an influential media voice and lauded communications strategist. As the Executive Editor and Producer of “The Luxe List International News Syndicate,” she’s a revered consumer product trends expert and travel industry voice of authority who spotlights noteworthy marketplace change makers, movers and shakers. Merilee may be reached online at Follow her on Twitter here: and Facebook here:


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Top 10 European Ski Destinations Selected by HomeExchange Members

Fancy staying on a home exchange this winter and stretching your skiing budget? Here are the top 10 European ski destinations chosen by HomeExchange Members. Stay near or in a resort, borrow ski accessories for kids and save on accommodation costs. There’s really something for everyone, from jacuzzis to sledges and beautiful views to hundreds of mountain chalets and apartments.

Val d’Isere, France

val-disere-franceThere’s a reason why Val d’Isere, at 1,850 meters, continues to be the top choice of European skiers each winter. It offers the perfect blend of challenging ski terrain for advanced skiers and learner-friendly beginners zones for those new to the snow. The resort center is lined with high-end shops, lively après-ski bars and fantastic restaurants, all housed within beautiful, stone-clad buildings.



Chamonix Les Houches, France

chamonix-les-houches-franceThe diversity on offer in Chamonix these days makes it impossible to review the whole resort as one destination. At 950 meters, Les Houches is one of the closest resorts to Geneva Airport and offers kilometer after kilometer of tree-lined skiing, making it the perfect destination for families and beginners. The resort center has a village feel and is an outstanding spot from which to take in the incredible views.

Cosy chalet near Mont Blanc, Les Houches – 10 minutes from Chamonix

Klosters, Switzerland

klosters-switzerlandWhile the ski area between Klosters (at 1,179 meters) and Davos offers lots to explore, Klosters is without doubt the more attractive base for your ski holiday. The village center is charming and affluent, but with a relaxed vibe, while the trails are popular with advanced skiers enjoying an abundance of easily accessible off-piste in the area.

Cosy chalet just 10 minutes from the ski lifts at Klosters


Les Gets, France

les-gets-franceA resort that’s been quietly minding its own business for years, Les Gets, at 1,200 meters, is now developing into a chic, family-orientated resort that offers quick and easy access to the 650-kilometer Portes du Soleil ski area. Several piste-side restaurants offer views of Mont Blanc so it’s easy to find a sunny spot on which to enjoy an après tipple or two.

Luxury mountain ski chalet – Exceptional view


Crans-Montana, Switzerland

crans-montana-swizterlandThere’s one thing that makes these two interconnected resorts stand out, and it may not be for everyone. Crans, at 1,500 meters, and its neighbour Montana are not villages; although right on the edge of a great ski area, they’re most definitely towns with a very urban feel. This is a very sunny spot in which to base yourself and there’s varied terrain to suit all ability levels.

Farm with beautiful views 10 minutes from Crans Montana


La Rosière, France

la-rosiere-franceWe love La Rosière, at 1,850 meters, not just because of its high elevation and snow certainty. The ski area offers two great experiences for the price of one when you cross over the Petit St Bernard pass into Italy. Wide pistes descend for kilometers into La Thuile over the border and getting back is no hassle at all. The main village is quiet but well stocked, and the views are exceptional.



Madonna di Campiglio, Italy

madonna-di-campiglio-italyItalian ski resorts are always authentic, traditional and charming, and Campiglio, at 1,550 meters, is no different. The car-free resort huddles on the valley floor and the center is stylish with several chic shops. The ski area spreads over 150 kilometers, and there have been several lift upgrades over recent years, making it quick and easy for you to cover a considerable distance on skis each day.

Luxurious apartment 5 minutes from ski lifts with fantastic view over the Dolomites

Courchevel Moriond 1650, France

courchevel-moriond-1650-franceRebranded back in 2011 to recognise the differences between its more blingy neighbour higher up the valley, Courchevel 1650 is now an attractive, unpretentious resort with a stack of new facilities, including Aquamotion, a huge center for water sports that opened in December 2015. And let’s not forget: On your doorstep you’ll find the largest linked ski area in the world. The 600 kilometers of the 3 Valleys network never disappoint.


Selva, Val Gardena, Italy

selva-val-gardena-italySeasoned skiers, this one’s for you. At 1,563 meters, Selva serves up challenging ski terrain on both sides of a valley, accessed by both gondolas and quick chair lifts. The village center is packed with charm and character and there’s also a collection of well-maintained beginner slopes and progressive tree-lined runs enjoyed by families.



Geilo, Norway

geilo-norwayNo list of top 10 ski resorts is complete without mentioning Norway and the town of Geilo, at 800 meters. It is one of the country’s most popular resorts. It’s a small, well-equipped town that’s currently investing heavily in new runs, new lifts and new facilities. Between January and April you can also ski until 8pm on flood-lit slopes.

Photo Credit: Geilo, Norway

For the Silo and HomeExchange, Alexandra Origet du Cluzeau.

About HomeExchange

Founded by Ed Kushins, a pioneer of the “collaborative consumption” movement, HomeExchange has facilitated over one million home swaps since 1992. It was featured in 2006 in the cult movie “The Holiday” starring Cameron Diaz, Kate Winslet and Jude Law. In 2015, 65,000 HomeExchange members made 130,000 home swaps across 150 countries. The revolutionary Passport™ program now makes home swapping even easier. Members earn a ‘balloon’ by hosting another Member and redeem their ‘balloon’ for a one-way stay anywhere in the world. HomeExchange makes it easy to plan and enjoy a home exchange vacation and offers a memorable, authentic experience while giving travel real meaning. It was voted “Best Site for Booking Your Stay 2016” by readers of USA TODAY and 10Best.

Florida “Porsche Tower” Condos Will Allow Owners To Take Cars Up In Elevator

“Porsche Design Tower Coming Soon”.  New York City is home to over 70 of the world’s billionaires, but when they want to get away to decompress, many shed their suit and tie for a guayabera, white slacks and boat shoes and head to South Florida for the white sand beaches, fine dining, yachting and golfing. Some will soon be heading to Sunny Isles, Florida where, according to the developer, over 20 billionaires have purchased a home at Porsche Design Tower.

What a space! What a view!
What a space! What a view!

What might be the future of South Florida luxury condos opens on September 1st when new owners at the Porsche building will first be able to take their cars up an elevator to their personal sky garage, including the $USD 32.5 million penthouse. Three patented Dezervators, a glass drive-in elevator rising at 600-feet per minute, will enable residents to keep an eye on their Ferraris, Porsches and Rolls Royces while sitting in their living rooms reading the Wall Street Journal and checking out the Atlantic Ocean views.

The 60th-floor Porsche penthouse comes with a huge living and dining area, state-of-the-art kitchen, family room and four ensuite bedrooms with a total of seven baths, floor-to-ceiling glass walls, 20-foot ceilings and a private people elevator. The outdoor living areas are equally impressive with a private terrace pool and roof pool, two balconies and two summer kitchens. It has two sky garages and a separate 3,000-square-foot car gallery. The gallery can be customized by the owner for fewer cars to substitute a game room or extra living space.

Porsche Tower Interior1Building amenities include a three-story lobby with glass car elevator observatory, movie theater, game room, oceanside restaurant with indoor/outdoor dining, private wine lockers, oceanside bar and lounge with fireplace and large-screen TVs, oceanfront pool with food and beverage service, Intracoastal Waterway sunset deck, virtual golf simulator, virtual car-race game, ballroom with bar and catering kitchen, oceanfront gym and yoga room, spa, sauna, steam rooms, hair salon and a car concierge available to give the luxury cars a wash and maintenance.

Porsche Tower Interior2Having broken ground in 2014, the tower is now 95% sold out. The penthouse is priced at $32.5 million; other units remaining for sale start at $6.2 million. Porsche is located in Sunny Isles – a ritzy part of the Atlantic Ocean stretch of Miami Beach to Fort Lauderdale condos. The developer is Dezer Development in Sunny Isles Beach, Florida.

In Other Real Estate News- “San Francisco Clock Tower Penthouse”.  Few can say that they start off their dinner parties with cocktails inside a century old clock. That is to say, no one except the new owners of this historic three-level landmark loft apartment gleaned from the clock tower of a factory in San Francisco’s South of Market neighborhood that was converted into live-work spaces in 1992 by architect David Baker.

The historic clock tower was constructed in 1907 and the large building complex that supported it became the West Coast’s largest printing company by 1921. The owner of the business, Max Schmidt, decided to construct a penthouse level in the clock tower where natural light poured in from all four sides of the clock faces so that his lithographers would find it easier to work. In 1930, the plan for the new Bay Bridge was solidified, which would require tearing down a portion of the printing buildings, including the clock tower. Schmidt would have none of that and used his clout, threatening to move his business to the other side of the bay. The city, unwilling to lose one of their largest businesses, gave in and agreed to take the highway around Schmidt’s complex and the tower was saved. In 1992, the old factory was repurposed into 127 contemporary live/work lofts and offices. Commuters have come to depend on the clock as they travel to and from work each day.

Now for the first time in almost a quarter of a century, the penthouse is for sale. The sleek contemporary condo with spectacular city views measures in at a spacious 3,000 square feet of living space, including a room inside the clock itself and has large wrap-around terraces providing outdoor space for lounging and entertaining. The two-bedroom, two-bath residence has been designed to optimize the loft’s spaciousness with an expansive living-dining room divided by a double-sided glass fireplace with French doors opening to the terrace. Original brick walls, hardwood and polished concrete floors and built-in bookcases following the lines of the beams are highlights of the structure. Included are a gourmet kitchen with top-end appliances and space for a table, office, game room, library, large master suite and the clock room.

San Francisco’s historic registered Landmark Clock Tower four-story penthouse loft apartment with conversation piece furnished room inside the clock is listed at $8.5 million.

Visit for more celebrity homes and real estate news. For the Silo, Terry Walsh.



3rd Concours d’Elégance Elite Concept Car Event pr

Peter Auto is delighted to announce that the Concours Chantilly Arts & Elegance Richard Mille, which will be held on 4th September in the Chantilly Domain for the third time, is welcoming two new partners: BMW and ACJ (Airbus Corporate Jets).

Last year's Chantilly.
Last year’s Chantilly.

BMW was present at the 2015 event as entrant in the Concours d’Elégance reserved for concept cars and won the 1st prize with the 3.0 CSL Homage R. In 2016, the year which marks the Bavarian make’s centenary, BMW has joined the Chantilly Arts & Elegance Richard Mille in the context of a wider partnership that will be announced at a later date.

ACJ provides its clients with the most modern business jets in the world based on the full range of planes made by Airbus, leader in the field of aeronautics, thanks to its unique expertise, innovative technology and bespoke customer service. A fully personalised interior can be installed in these very spacious VIP planes including, for example, a lounge, an office, a bedroom and a bathroom. By combining interiors with unique living spaces and a range of action that enables its clients to cover the whole world, ACJ facilitates their life style. With ACJ Chantilly Arts & Elegance welcomes a partner whose values of excellence, innovation and luxury dovetail perfectly with those highlighted by the event.

Last year's winner- the BMW CSL R concept car. What a beauty!
Last year’s winner- the BMW CSL          concept car. What a beauty!

BMW and ACJ join a list of prestigious partners who have renewed their confidence in Peter Auto in 2016 for the Chantilly Arts & Elegance Richard Mille: DS Automobiles, Le Point, Bonhams, Relais & Châteaux, Charles Heidsieck, Radio Classic, the IDEC Group, etc.

The first two Chantilly Arts & Elegance Richard Mille were an instant success with the public, manufacturers, collectors and partners. They were also rewarded in Great Britain by the prize for the Motor Car Event of the Year in 2014 and 2015 at the International Historic Motoring Awards. In 2015 the event received the backing of the French Ministry of Culture and Communication, which has renewed its support in 2016.

The 3rd Chantilly Arts & Elegance Richard Mille follows in the same vein as the previous ones by continuing with the Concours Automobile allied with a wide range of activities that include the French Art of Living, Fine Arts, Arts of the Table, Fashion, Music, Watch making, etc. with the partnership of prestigious houses and brands. Thus, all the ingredients are combined to make it a rendezvous that’s unique in its field in an exceptional setting only a few kilometres from Paris. The riches of the Chantilly Domain and the eponymous princely town give Chantilly Arts & Elegance Richard Mille the quintessence of art and elegance, which all the visitor can enjoy at this convivial, family event.

Click me! Future ready art music for future ready Super Cars.

Montreal Restaurant Renoir Is Part Of Culinary Golden Mile

Chaque jeudi     Every Thursday
Du 14 au 28 avril, de 17h à 20h
From April 14 to 28, from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Bar à crabe des neiges et oursins
Snow crab and sea urchins bar
Le printemps arrive, le crabe des neiges aussi ! Joignez-vous à nous au restaurant Renoir pour découvrir nos fameux cocktails ainsi que des produits sélectionnés par notre Chef Olivier Perret. 
Spring is coming, so is the snow crab! Come join us at the Renoir restaurant to discover our famous cocktails and products selected by our Chef Olivier Perret. 
Servis avec mayonnaise maison et garnitures
Served with home-made mayonnaise and garnish
30 $
Taxes et service non inclus
Taxes and service not inclued
Restaurant Renoir
1155 Sherbrooke Ouest
Montréal, H3A 2N3, Québec
+1 (514) 788-3038
1155 Sherbrooke Ouest – Montreal – Quebec – H3A 2N3 – Montreal – Canada
Tel: +1 514 285-9000 – Fax : +1 514 289-1155 – –

Starting a Vintage Watch Collection

Starting A Vintage Watch Collection Infographic
Click Infographic to visit and learn more.

Celebrity Homes: Casino King’s Las Vegas Mansion Going To Auction

“Las Vegas Primm Ranch”…….Michael Jackson called it “Wonderland” and his daughter said it was “Candyland.” The 10-acre compound in a Las Vegas neighborhood of casino owners, entertainers and royalty (Wayne Newton lives nearby and the Sultan of Brunei was a neighbor) was designed to be a secure and safe haven for a family, a memorable experience for their guests and a place to safely enjoy their expensive hobbies. This was its appeal to Michael Jackson, who had sights on a Las Vegas residency show and, according to Las Vegas media, had toured the home several times. Jackson was planning on making an offer on the home when he returned from his “This Is It” London residency show scheduled to run through early 2010. However, Michael died just three weeks before the start of the tour.

Completed in 1994 for Nevada casino and resort developer Gary Primm, the compound was designed for luxury, but security was Primm’s biggest concern. Primm is a big-game hunter and car collector including the “Bonnie and Clyde Death Car” that he has displayed at several of his casinos. The home was completed soon after Las Vegas casino developer Steve Wynn’s daughter was kidnapped from the kitchen of their Las Vegas home. Primm was worried about the safety of his own two children and designed the home with a 10-foot wall surrounding the property and three gates that can be controlled by the owner, eliminating the need for round-the-clock guards who might be bought off by a rival. Throughout are security tunnels, bulletproof doors, secret rooms with entries disguised as walls or cabinets and a panic room with an oxygen supply and separate underground phone lines.

The Primm Ranch includes a main estate house with 15,000 square feet, a guest villa, grotto villa, staff quarters, horse trainer quarters, equestrian barn, arena, pens and pastures, a dog villa, grotto pool with spa, waterfall and slide, all surrounded by lush lawns and palms. There is also a garage/car showroom that will house 20 cars with its own gas station for diesel and unleaded fuels, a car wash with deionized water and mechanic’s lift. With a total living area of over 21,000 square feet, there are 10 bedrooms and 19 baths. Highlights include a beauty salon, trophy room with recorded animal sounds, driving range, 5,000-bottle wine cellar, theater, casino room, gym and sauna. The grounds include a greenhouse, outdoor kitchen adjacent to the pool with a bar and guest suite accessed under the waterfall, and a tennis court. Equestrian facilities include stalls for ten horses with training and riding areas. According to the estate’s listing agent, Jackson planned on converting the home’s underground shooting range into a recording studio.

Currently listed at $14.5 million USD, Primm Ranch will go up for auction on October 10th with no reserve. The auction company handling the sale is Concierge Auctions of New York City.

Real estate is never boring at TopTenRealEstateDeals. Check out today’s most entertaining, important and unusual real estate news stories of the week. News such as “Florida Foreclosure King Losing Home,” “Burt Reynolds Finally Sells Florida Home,” and “Exotic Islands For Sale.”

CNBC’s “Secret Lives of the Super Rich”

Secret Lives Of The Super Rich

CNBC’s half-hour primetime series “Secret Lives of the Super Rich,” premiered Tuesday, June 10th at 10PM & hour episodes began airing each Tuesday for four consecutive weeks.

Reported by CNBC’s Robert Frank and featuring New York City super broker Dolly Lenz, “Secret Lives of the Super Rich” unlocks the mansion gates and gives you rare access to a world inhabited by the wealthiest people on the planet. Here’s a sneak peek courtesy of The Silo:

Dolly Lenz
Dolly Lenz

In the first episode, we met a man who’s taken his lifelong Lamborghini obsession from land to water. Also, “Secret Lives of the Super Rich” gets a rare invite on a luxury safari where there’s no shortage of wild life, or champagne. And, an exclusive look inside a Star Trek mega-mansion that may have you wondering if it’s actually the Starship Enterprise (video: also see Star Trek Home Theater profiled here at the Silo:


Dover Cheese Shop

World’s largest in-water Boat show happening this October in Florida

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – If you are traveling to Fort Lauderdale, Florida, also known as the “Venice of America,” the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show® is a must-see event. From October 31- November 4, 2013, the City of Fort Lauderdale welcomes thousands of international visitors to the largest in-water boat show in the world.


Serenity now...a Sundeck from a HANA yacht.
Serenity now…a Sundeck from a HANA yacht.


Featuring more than $3 billion worth of boats and marine products, the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show is known for its astounding number of luxurious super yachts, which attract yachting enthusiasts from around the world. But the show offers something for everyone who loves the water, and even those not in the market to buy a boat can find an array of fun-filled activities.

For laid-back fun and relaxation, the show provides an elaborate fireworks display and live musical entertainment on floating cocktail barges and at the International Food Garden, where some people linger all day and enjoy the friendly boating atmosphere.

The Fort Lauderdale Boat Show image: Forest Johnson
The Fort Lauderdale Boat Show image: Forest Johnson


For those in the mood for learning, entry to the boat show includes complimentary marine seminars covering a wide variety of topics such as sport fishing and long-range cruising. Even kids can get in on the fun at youth fishing clinics presented by  Hook The Future, a non-profit organization dedicated to empowering children.

Anyone who loves life on the water can stroll the docks at five outdoor locations, as well as the Broward County Convention Center, which together present an amazing variety of beautiful boats ranging in size from 20 feet to almost 300 feet in length. In addition to over-the-top mega-yachts and recreational boats of all sizes, there’s an eye-popping display of exotic cars. If a new boat or car isn’t in your budget, the boat show is a total shopping experience with nautical clothing, jewelry, art, accessories and everything marine.


The Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show encompasses 3 million square feet of space on land and in water over six sites. Its transportation network of shuttles, water taxis and riverboats ensures show goers can easily navigate the “Venice of America” and its expansive waterways system. Purchasing an all-day Transportation Show Pass provides unlimited one-day usage of the show’s water taxis, a great way to see Fort Lauderdale by water while enjoying boat show tales shared by the boats’ captains. Free riverboats are also available, providing a fun, affordable adventure for the whole family. For those looking to drive, convenient valet parking is available at the show’s Las Olas Municipal Marina location.

Fort Lauderdale Boat Show



The Fort Lauderdale International Boat Showtakes place at the Bahia Mar Yachting Center, the Hall of Fame Marina, the Las Olas Municipal Marina, the Hilton Fort Lauderdale Marina, the Broward County Convention Center and the Sails Marina, all minutes away from Fort Lauderdale’s renowned “Blue Wave” beaches and rows of restaurants, shops and attractions.

The show’s free smartphone app, MyBoatShow, helps attendees navigate the show’s  docks, land areas and tents. Available on iPhone and Android platforms, the MyBoatShow app provides show maps, transportation schedules and seminar information, and allows attendees to search for exhibitors, manufacturers, product categories and boats  by specifications and size.

To make travel arrangements, contact the show’s official travel partner,,
at  +1 (954) 548-0878


Thursday, Oct. 31 (Prime Time Preview)        10 a.m. – 7 p.m.

Friday, Nov. 1                                                          10 a.m. – 7 p.m.

Saturday, Nov. 2                                                     10 a.m. – 7 p.m.

Sunday, Nov. 3                                                       10 a.m. – 7 p.m.

Monday, Nov. 4                                                      10 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Contact for admission rates and ticket pricing.


The Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show® is owned and sponsored by the Marine Industries Association of South Florida, managed and produced by Show Management, and sponsored by Gosling’s Rum, Seakeeper, AIM Marine Group, Budweiser,,
Palm Harbor Marina and Smallwoods Yachtwear. Like the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show on Facebook at

London, England’s five most famous hotels

London's Most Famous Hotels















Luxurious living, money and fame are things that spring to mind when thinking about hotels London. Many of them have stood the test of time and built a sterling reputation all over the world attracting many of the rich and famous.

Here we’ve compiled a list of the most renowned hotels in London.

Claridge’s, London

Claridge's London- 5 Star Hotel. Address: 49 Brook St, London, Greater London W1K 4HR, United Kingdom
Claridge’s London- 5 Star Hotel. Address: 49 Brook St, London, Greater London W1K 4HR, United Kingdom



Opened in 1854 Claridges London is one of the oldest hotels in the city. Located in London’s infamous Mayfair, Its clientele are among the rich and famous with celebrities such as Brad Pitt and Mick Jagger no stranger to its doors. TV favourite Gordon Ramsay also had his own restaurant there for a time.


Its décor and facilities boast the best in fine dining and luxury living unrivalled in London and has over its long lifespan attracted royalty from all over the world. The hotel was also the feature of a 3 part documentary series for the BBC entitled ‘Inside Claridges’.




The Connaught, London


The Connaught London. Five star Hotel. Carlos Pl, London W1K 2AL, United Kingdom
The Connaught London. Five star Hotel. Carlos Pl, London W1K 2AL, United Kingdom


Residing in Mayfair, the Connaught first opened its doors in 1815. The hotel allows both traditional British and contemporary design to co-exist by maintaining its Victorian exterior and completing a 70 million pound internal refurbishment by lead designer Guy Oliver.

This hotel and its staff have won many prestigious awards over its lifespan including its spa winning first prize in the spa category in the Hotel & Lodge Awards 2012 and it’s very own bartender Agostino Perrone winning International Bartender of the Year 2010.



Brown’s, London

Brown's Hotel London. Five star Hotel. 33 Albemarle St, London W1S 4BP, United Kingdom
Brown’s Hotel London. Five star Hotel. 33 Albemarle St, London W1S 4BP, United Kingdom

One of London’s most established hotels is Browns. Opening its doors in 1837, it celebrated its 175th anniversary in 2012 and has consistently attracted guests of wealth and fame, most notably President Theodore Roosevelt and Oscar Wilde.

Not only does this Mayfair hotel boast a stunning Victorian 5 star setting it is also within walking distance to some of London’s busiest attractions such as Hyde Park, Bond Street, Regent Street and some of its most famous landmarks.








The Great Northern Hotel

First opened in 1854, London's Great Northern Hotel is "an exquisitely designed luxury boutique hotel with an extraordinary location, literally within King's Cross Station and just 25 metres from the Eurostar terminus at St Pancras International."
First opened in 1854, London’s Great Northern Hotel is “an exquisitely designed luxury boutique hotel with an extraordinary location, literally within King’s Cross Station and just 25 metres from the Eurostar terminus at St Pancras International.”




Dubbed as ‘The World’s First Great Railway Hotel’ , The Great Northern is a stunning boutique hotel with rail connections to Europe and beyond via the Eurostar. It stands tall above the areas surrounding buildings and it’s a significant point of interest for all arriving into Kings Cross St Pancras station.

Designed by infamous architect Lewis Cubitt stood as the centrepiece for the steam revolution.




The Berkeley

The Berkeley Hotel London is a five star Hotel. Wilton Pl, Knightsbridge, London SW1X 7RL, United Kingdom
The Berkeley Hotel London is a five star Hotel. Wilton Pl, Knightsbridge, London SW1X 7RL, United Kingdom


The Berkeley is a five star deluxe hotel, located in Knightsbridge, London. Its history spans well over a 100 years and has even moved buildings. The infamous hotel began its life at Berkeley Street and served as accommodation for mail coach drivers travelling to the West Country.

In 1972 it moved to its current location, incorporating an entirely new refurbishment to include London’s only rooftop swimming pool. Aside from its unique facilities and décor the Berkleley has attracted numerous Michelin star chefs including Pierre Koffmann and more recently Gordon Ramsay and his Boxwood Café. For the Silo, travel writer Susan Varano.

Thrilling Test Drive Of New Wraith By Rolls-Royce

Now THAT'S how you launch a new Rolls....and especially one called Wraith- smoke, vapor, mist, theatrics and a spooky performer. All images A. Maughan/The Silo
Now THAT’S how you launch a new Rolls….and especially one called Wraith- smoke, vapor, mist, theatrics and a spooky performer. All images A. Maughan/The Silo

The brand new Wraith from the Rolls-Royce car company is not something I get exposed to often. Let’s face it,  I’m a mid size car guy. Not high-end luxury.  I rationalize my affordability factor by saying that high end’s are too ‘heavy’ and shee-shee poo-poo. Up until now, that may have been as true.


Rolls had an unveiling of their new car The Wraith the other week [Wednesday, August 28th CP]  here in beautiful Vancouver. And well, like the locale, the car itself did stand out even beyond the scenery. The Silo was invited to attend and I earned the assignment. Life is hard 😉

After entering the front doors of the party where a sliver painted goddess of sorts and a sleek feather black wraith slowly and elegantly moved around the scene, one can only be sure to expect nothing short of the best attention to these prospective buyers. There was jewelry set to the tone of $425,000 (Canada’s biggest pink Diamond); a price tag similar to the cars standing right next to them. The food was excellent and the company certainly discerning.

"Emily" or the Flying Lady is the venerable hood ornament for Rolls-Royce automobiles. The live actress seen here on the right captured the mystery and drama behind the creation of the emblem.
“Emily” or the Flying Lady is the venerable hood ornament for Rolls-Royce automobiles. The live actress seen here on the right captured the mystery and drama behind the creation of the emblem.

There was not shortage of demonstration of other models and those with mostly older not only in lineage but also in style, heralding a tradition one has come to know of Rolls Royce. Which is why when the time came for the unveiling of the new car, there was nothing short of a surprise. The car looked sleek and modern while maintaining the more discernable feature Rolls is known for. It looked like, well, not quite a Rolls. It seemed sporty even. For those who wanted performance but still the luxury that comes with expectations. People actually gasped and well, they should have.


Once the shock settled opera singers belted out a song of elegance that matched the vehicle’s looks and appearance. I became transported and wanted to change careers all of sudden.

On hand for the North American launch of the Wraith? Only, the largest pink Diamond in Canada.
On hand for the North American launch of the Wraith? Only, the largest pink Diamond in Canada.


The show was a success, so now came the long shot that I would get to test-drive one of them. I am not a buyer, no sir.


“So when can I test drive one, ahahaha”


“Are you free tomorrow at 3pm?”


Ummm….yeah maybe sure….oh look at that I am free. Perfect” Gulp.


So on to the test drive.


I show up at the Rolls dealership in Vancouver and was met with nothing but interest and enthusiasm for someone who clearly was not in the market for such a car. That didn’t matter much as they were very excited to show off their new marvel. Ha! I thought. No way this thing can actually drive as cool as it looks. Well, my dear readers, was I wrong.

0-100 in 4.4 seconds. Quite. Handles like a dream. Smooth. Great suspension. 14 speaker sound system. Crazy navigation. Just crazy. The holographic road map was floating next to a virtual speedometer in/on (?) the windshield. Touch sensitive screen for drawing on. I mean the whole thing was about performance from interior to engine.

"There she is!" My first look at the Wraith and I'm getting ready to test drive this gorgeous machine. It looks fast.
“There she is!” My first look at the Wraith and I’m getting ready to test drive this gorgeous machine. It looks fast.

The camera system is a cool feature, however at the end of the experience I didn’t really know how to use them. What happens is a 5-camera system captures unique perspectives and through an algorithm creates a bird eyes view of the car. Very cool. However, I just used my mirrors and the over–the-shoulder-one-arm-on-the-back –of-the-passenger-seat to look behind me for the approach in backing up. Technology is great but it has to actually be effective or helpful. Give the user a certain level of confidence that she or he would never have alone otherwise.


And boy did I check my mirrors often when driving. I didn’t want to risk a dent or a scratch.

Just pulling out for the first time was nerve racking, but once you got the feel for it, which happens quick, you are instantly spoiled as a driver which is of course the point when dealing with luxury cars. And it seems Rolls still has been able to retain the  ability to spoil its driver no matter what. The wraith delivers. For the Silo,  Arthur Maughan.


Yes it was rainy and a bit wet that day. Yes, the Wraith had a secret umbrella compartment. Now where is that machinegun button ?
Yes it was rainy and a bit wet that day. Yes, the Wraith had a secret umbrella compartment. Now where is that machinegun button ?


Click to view on I-tunes
Click to view on I-tunes