Cartier Ion Orchard reopens its doors with a special exhibition titled Cartier, Icon of Style


By now you must have already caught sight of the gorgeous Cartier ferris wheel parked outside Ion Orchard shopping mall – or seen it plastered all over Instagram. This gigantic structure is just the first of many things happening at this Cartier boutique, which is set to reopen its doors officially on 24th November. And did you know that this three-story boutique is the largest Cartier store in all of Southeast Asia?

Spanning a total of 688 square metres, the store’s remodelling was done by the famed Parisian artist, designer, scenographer, painter and photographer Bruno Moinard, who made sure to marry the French Art de Vivre (art of living, the French way) with multiple references to Singaporean culture as a Garden City – embracing the beauty, richness and diversity of it all.


Artist’s impression of Le Salon Cartier on the third level of Cartier ION Orchard

Inspired by the Singapore’s tropical climate, the external 20-metre-long glass façade is patterned with palm trees and raindrops to elicit a sense of privacy and exclusiveness. Another key feature is a custom-made sculpture of art – in the stairwell between the first and second floors. The Cartier panther – carved in bas-relief – nestles amongst the tropical environment on a plaster panel, referencing to Singapore’s very own flora and fauna.

On the third and highest floor, the Le Salon Cartier has been enriched with Peranakan artefacts exuding the splendour of this beautiful local Singaporean culture.


Shirin ‘Nina Dyer’ Aga Khan Panther Bangle

But more exciting news awaits. Cartier Singapore has – as part of the reopening celebrations – specially curated an exhibition of selected historic and extraordinary pieces brought in from the Cartier archives in Paris. The exhibition titled ‘Cartier, Icon of Style’ has been specially curated – showcasing selected beautiful historic and extraordinary jewellery pieces.

More than a Cartier symbol. A timeless emblem first tamed by Louis Cartier and his muse, Jeanne Toussaint, the totemic panther carries on her reign.

Titled Cartier, Icon of Style, the exhibition highlights, among other things, the origins of the Maison’s love affair with the panther motif. The French Maison was the first jeweller to adopt the panther. The elegant feline was used for the firts time on a wristwatch in 1914 with a setting of onyx recreating the animal’s fur.


Barbara Hutton’s Tiger Clip

When Jeanne Toussaint was appointed as creative director in 1933, the panter became even more as an emblematic motif for the Maison. Toussaint worked closely alongside founder Louis Cartier and was nicknamed ‘La Panthère’, presumably due to her freedom, strength of character and the love pather in her lifestyle. One of her most outstanding inputs lies in the search on volume and attidudes of the animal. For Jeanne Toussaint, the panther – now an iconic motif – is clearly the emblem of timeless femininity unfettered by convention.

Marked by wild and beautiful femininity, the fearless and audacious panther later seduced countless personalities; royalty, celebrities and femme fatales, who would continue the legend through new savoir-faire and unexplored attitudes in precious materials.

Both, Louis Cartier and Jeanne Toussaint, also had a mutual interest in, not to say a fascination with, other cultures. This has helped shape not just the aesthetic of one or other object, but the entire Cartier style. A visual language, wich has extended to every creation and whose ‘vocabulary’ has been constantly expanding.


The Duchess of Windsor’s Panther Brooch

The ‘Cartier, Icon of Style’ exhibition highlights the orgins of the panther and its rich connections with some of the most well-known figures, such as the Duchess of Windsor, Shirin – Nina Dyer – Aga Khan and Barbara Hutton, just to name a few.

Open to the public, the exhibition will run from November 24 to December 6. Monday to Friday: 12pm to 9.00pm, Saturday to Sunday: 10.30am to 9.00pm. Keen individuals are encouraged to indicate registration interest on Cartier ‘Icon of Style’ as viewing slots are limited.

Come into the world of Cartier.





Own A Piece Of The Luxurious Paris Ritz

Ritz Paris.png

The façade of the Ritz hotel in Paris. Image: Vincent Leroux.

When it comes to Europe’s grand-dame hotels, none are quite as iconic as the Ritz Paris. The Ritz Paris has been synonymous with refined luxury and timeless glamour for over 100 years. Opened in 1898 by Swiss entrepreneur Cesar Ritz the Ritz has served as the backdrop to several key moments in French history. The Nazis requisitioned it during World War II but had cleared out by the time Ernest Hemingway burst in with a group of Resistance fighters on August 25, 1944, gun in hand, to ‘personally liberate’ it. Realising he was too late Hemingway took to the bar where he is said to have run up a tab for 51 dry Martinis. In 1997, tragedy befell the hotel when Britain’s Princess Diana, who had been staying there, was killed in a car accident in a Paris tunnel while being pursued by paparazzi. The hotel made global headlines again in January, when robbers armed with guns and hatchets ransacked jewellery shops on the ground floor, making off with over four million euros ($4.9 million) in gems and watches.

The Ritz decided to sell the pieces when it reopened in June 2016 after four years of a fittingly glamorous top-to-bottom renovation. After being closed for over 4 years, the Ritz has long been a favorite of visitors to the City of Light, hosting everyone from Begum Om Habibeh Aga Khan and Gabrielle ‘Coco’ Chanel to the Duke and Duchess of Windsor in its opulent rooms and suites.


Now, the hotel’s fans have a chance to own a piece of Ritz history – 3,500 lots consisting of 10,000 pieces of furniture and decorative objects from the property will be up for auction on the Champs Élysées this April. Organized by Artcurial – the firm that was also behind the sales of historic pieces from pre-renovation Hôtel de Crillon and the Plaza Athénée – the Ritz Paris auction will be held from April 17 through 21.

Price estimates run from 100 euros for a pair of tablecloths to 10,000 euros for a pair of nymph sculptures carrying bronze candelabras that used to decorate the lobby. Each lot in the auction’s extensive catalogue has been meticulously restored, inventoried, and catalogued by a team of 15 experts from Artcurial, who went to great lengths to ensure that every piece bearing the Ritz Paris insignia was returned to its former glory before heading to the auction block.


A cross section of the Ritz Paris’ illustrious history, the auction includes pieces from the property’s 120 years as a hotel. When it was opened by Swiss hotelier César Ritz in 1989, the original décor was meant to entice well-heeled Americans visiting the city, combining elegant art with antiques and replicas of everything from Louis XIV– to Empire-style furniture to create a unique sense of traditional French elegance. The style of 15 Place Vendôme quickly became iconic, and hallmarks like the hotel’s plush red-velvet barstools, salon sofas from French writer Marcel Proust’s retreats at the hotel, the gilt-framed bed that starred alongside Audrey Hepburn and Gary Cooper in their 1957 film ‘Love In The Afternoon’, the first en-suite bathtub ever installed at the property (or in any hotel, for that matter), and ornate marble side tables are all up for loyalists to bid on.

In addition to hallmarks of the Ritz’s style, pieces from suites that some of property’s most famous inhabitants called home will be up for sale. Sure to spark bidding wars are pieces such as a pair of plush floral chesterfield armchairs, a gilded headboard, and sleek lacquered bedside tables from the Coco Chanel Suite. The legendary fashion designer called the hotel her home for more than 30 years – giving testament to both the hotel’s enduring stylishness and its famous homelike feel . . . if home is a Versailles-inspired mansion, of course.

A bedboard and lacquered bedside tables from the Coco Chanel Suite

A bedboard and lacquered bedside tables from the Coco Chanel Suite.

Believe it or not, many of the lots aren’t outrageous, either. Bids open at €150 for a pair of gilded lanterns, and €300 for a set of Louis XVI-style banquette. If the over-the-top opulence fits with your own personal aesthetic, then what better way to hold on to a piece of history? One thing’s for sure: there’ll never be another hotel quite like it.

Come into the world of the Ritz Paris.





The Museum of Lace and Fashion, Calais presents Hubert de Givenchy retrospective


From June 15 to December 31, 2017, The Museum of Lace and Fashion in Calais, France, is holding an exhibition dedicated to the work of Hubert de Givenchy, the legendary fashion designer and founder of the French Maison. Seventy outfits symbolizing his inspirations, his expertise and his significant encounters recap almost six decades of fashion design. Now 90, the designer has dressed some of the most amazing women in the last 50 years, from Audrey Hepburn to The Begum Aga Khan to Daisy Fellows.

The master of couture and dress presents an inside look to his work and inspiration.

The show will see 70 outfits from private wardrobes, the Givenchy archives and the collection of several European museums go on public display for over six months. Under the artistic direction and curation of Hubert de Givenchy himself, the exhibition will retrace the couturier’s entire career, from his first collection in 1952 to his sumptuous wedding gowns and his key encounters.

The show, which presents couture creations in sober white, gray and black display cases backed by mirrors, opens with a section dedicated to haute couture fabric samples. Essential tools in the creation of bespoke garments, the different fabrics and textiles with which Hubert de Givenchy worked hold a key place in the exhibition. In fact, exceptional textiles are something of a running theme, with the show also highlighting the work of artisans the couturier worked with for decades, such as embroiderers Lesage and Vermont, and fabric manufacturers Abraham and Beuclère.

Standout pieces include a blue and white striped organza sheath dress worn by the Duchess of Windsor, a famous ‘Bettina’ cotton blouse dating from 1952, a spectacular ball gown in Chantilly Lace  and satin, an evening ensemble in lame brocade and embroidered with gold and silver braids, metallic leaves and beads, and a cocktail dress worn by Audrey Hepburn in Blake Edwards’ movie ‘Breakfast at Tiffany’s’.

Tiffany & Co. Blue Box Cafe Audrey Hepburn GIF

Certain encounters proved particularly influential on the work of Hubert de Givenchy. From Jacqueline Kennedy and the Duchess of Windsor to the Countess de Borchgrave, the designer dressed some of society’s most stylish figures. Meeting his muse, Audrey Hepburn, proved particularly decisive, both for his career and for the actress’ style, which was built through their friendship. A whole section of the exhibition will explore this relationship, featuring several gowns worn by Audrey Hepburn in ‘Breakfast at Tiffany’s’ and ‘How to Steal a Million’, as well as clips from her movies.

In addition, the exhibition highlights the designer’s artistic inspirations and explores Givenchy fragrances, while also showcasing exceptional eveningwear creations and imposing wedding gowns made from lace and tulle.

Hubert de Givenchy – The Museum of Lace and Fashion, Calais, France will be opened from June 15 to December 31, 2017.






The Origins of Cartier’s Legendary Panthère Jewels


No other animal figure is more emblematic of a jewelry brand than Cartier’s panther. The iconic cat pounced its way into the French Maison’s designs in the early 20th century, at a time when animal skins were all the rage in the fashionable world.

Up until the First World War, the panther and its likeness rarely appeared in medieval and Renaissance Europe. Panther skins during the sixteenth and seventeenth century were prized items in curiosity cabinets, a valuable hunting animal revered for its exquisitely patterned fur. As Europe explored and colonized the world, European painters depicted the new colonies and their ‘noble savages’ wearing primitive swaths of leopard skin.

Cartier Boutique

By 1900, ‘Lady with Panther’ became a favorite motif in European art, much like the Virgin and the Unicorn theme during the medieval era. The subtly erotic and infernal nature of the combination was beguiling. The Lady-Panther subject was most notably rendered by Belgian artist Walter Sauer in ‘Femme devenue panthère’ in 1919 and fellow Belgian symbolist Khnopff in ‘La Caresse’.

During the early 19th century, the panther’s image as a motif was quite palpable, its rise in popularity partially credited to the stylish interiors decorated by Elsie de Wolfe. The New York native and amateur actress, also known as Lady Mendl, made her mark on society not on the stage but in her exceptional talents in interior décor. In 1907, de Wolfe was commissioned for the interior design of the newly built Colony Club, the premier women’s social club in New York whose building was designed by famed architect Stanford White. The rave reviews of her work launched her career as the preferred interior decorator of international society. More importantly, de Wolfe pioneered the use of exotic animal skins in interior design, examples of which could be seen at her Villa Trianon in Versailles.

Cartier Panter Earrings Art Deco

Cartier Panter Diamond and Onyx Earrings (Click photo to enlarge).

As the rest of the fashionable world followed suit in incorporating panther skins into their work, designers at Cartier found the panther skin ripe with inspiration, its modish print re-imagined in onyx and diamond. The first panther-pattern appeared on a wrist-watch in 1914, with its second appearance seen just a year later on a pendant watch.

Interestingly, the first image of a panther at the French firm appeared not in jeweled form but in a drawing by the great French illustrator George Barbier. In 1914, Louis Cartier commissioned the picture ‘Lady with Panther’ from Barbier to be used as an exhibition card. So striking was the illustration, which shows a lady wearing a Poiret gown with a black panther laying at her feet in between two columns, that Cartier later used it for advertising. However, Cartier had yet to create a reproduction of the panther figure in full.

Cartier Panther

‘Lady with Panther’ by George Barbier for Cartier, 1914 (Click photo to enlarge)

Presumably made around 1917, a vanity case owned by Jeanne Toussaint, a close friend of Louis Cartier’s at the time and later the firm’s Creative Director, featured the first representation of the entire animal. Fondly known as ‘Panther’, Toussaint’s affinity for the exotic could be seen in the number of animal furs she owned, as well as the panther carpets that adorned her apartment in Paris.

Cartier Jeanne Toussaint

Jeanne Toussaint photographed by Adolf de Meyer, 1920 (Click photo to enlarge).

Not too surprisingly, the design of her onyx panther vanity case proved quite fitting. It was the first in a series with animal decorations in miniature, based largely on Barbier’s 1914 drawing. In similarity to the illustration, the decorations on the vanity case depict a stalking panther in diamonds situated in between two carved emerald cypress trees instead of ionic columns. Other versions in the series include dogs at play and a leaping gazelle.

Cartier Panther Cigarete Case

This vanity case, made in 1928, is similar in design to that owned by Jeanne Toussaint. It’s made of gold, platinum, enamal, diamonds, emeralds, rubies and onyx. The interior has a mirror, lipstick case, covered powder compartment and a cigarette compartment. This item is part of a later series of cases also inspired by Georges Barbier’s drawings of panthers, dogs, and gazelles. Another case decorated with greyhounds belonged to Elma Rumsey, Pierre Cartier’s wife. (Photo: N. Welsh, Cartier Collection © Cartier) (Click photo to enlarge).

Though the abstract dot-pattern derived from the panther pelt would speckle a handful of Cartier’s designs from 1922 to 1927, it would be years before a three-dimensional version of the panther would emerge. That momentous event occurred in 1948 when the Duke of Windsor placed a special order for a panther brooch as a present for the Duchess of Windsor. The resulting jewel is a powerful yet simple composition: atop a 116.74-carat emerald rests a proud outstretched gold panther flecked with black enamel. One year later, the Duchess of Windsor added a second panther jewel to her collection, this time in the form of a pavé diamond panther with sapphire spots crouching around a stunning 152.35-carat cabochon sapphire. The third, and most exceptional, jewel in the Duchess’s suite of panthers was ordered in 1952: a beautifully articulated bracelet of an outstretched panther in diamond and onyx with emerald eyes. Even more cats would later be added to the Duchess’s collection.

Cartier Panther Duchess

Cartier Panther Duchess

The Duchess of Windsor’s suite of Cartier Panther Jewels (Click photo’s to enlarge)

It wasn’t long before society’s most stylish doyennes wanted panthers of their own. In 1950, Daisy Fellowes commissioned a panther brooch of sapphire and diamond, the design of which is clearly modeled after the pendant of the Order of the Golden Fleece.

Princess Nina Aga Khan’s appetite for Cartier’s panther jewels began in 1957 with a jabot-pin featuring an outstretched panther much like that of the Duchess of Windsor’s. Within a few years, the Princess would acquire the most extensive suite of panther jewelry from Cartier. Her impressive parure included an articulated panther pendant of the Golden Fleece design, an open panther-head bangle of similar design to ancient Mediterranean animal-head styles, a second fluted gold bangle with panther-head terminals that could also be worn as earclips, and a ring with a crouching tiger. She didn’t only love panther Jewels, she commisioned also accessoiries, a bag, watch  and picture frames.

Cartier Panther Nina Dyer Aga Khan

The third most notable collector of Cartier’s cats was Barbara Hutton, who opted for the firm’s tiger variations. She commissioned a brooch of canary-yellow diamonds striped with onyx along with a pair of matching earclips, all of which are in the likeness of the Golden Fleece, as well as a spectacular gold and black enamel tiger bracelet and an evening bag featuring an enameled tiger ornament.

Today, the panther remains Cartier’s most favorite designs. The older covetable cats continue to achieve astronomical prices at auction while newer versions are available from Cartier in a range of styles and prices, from the firm’s one-of-a-kind High Jewelry creations to more simplified varieties in the Panthère de Cartier collection.

Cartier Panther Ring

A coral, onyx and diamond

Cartier Panther new designs (Click photos to enlarge).

An Onyx and Diamond


Cartier Panther

Cartier Panther

Cartier Panther watch

Cartier Baguette Panthere Watch

Celebrating the art of haute fragrance.


House of Sillage showcases its signature fragrances along with their new limited-edition bottles.

Each of Luxury fragrance producer House of Sillage’s scents and artisan cupcake-inspired crystal bottles are created and produced in France by a team of professional noses, artists and craftsmen. These House of Sillage Limited-edition bottles, filled with precious signature fragrances, wearing names as ‘Love is in the Air’, ‘Cherry Garden’, ‘Nouez Moi’, ‘Benevolence’, ‘Emerald Reign’ and ‘Tiara’. Featuring finest, hand-placed Swarovski crystal on each cap, the bottle has its own serial number to ensure the exclusivity of a long-term keepsake.

Sillage Nouez Moi

Sillage Nouez Moi. Seeing this bottle, the cap, for the firt time, it reminded me on Elizabeth Taylor’s ‘White Diamonds’ (Click photo to enlarge).

Sillage Emerald Reign

Sillage Emerald Reign, the now famous ‘Tiger’ bottle, wich Nina Dyer and the Duchess of Windsor would have liked… a lot!(Click photo to enlarge).

Sillage Emerald Reign

Sillage Emerald Reign, another limited edition (Click photo to enlarge).

These precious’ bottles are a matter of tast. You like them, or not at all. But special they are! Knowing that they worked with a team of professional noses, artists and craftsmen, and using the ‘right’ ingrediants I hope I can bring you some reviews soon on these fragances.

by Jean Amr

Glamorously Royal Cartier Tigers



One of the most revered animal, Tigers are vulnerable to extinction as only about 3,200 exist in the wild today. Even in the ritzy-glitzy world of fine jewelry, Cartier Tigers are rare to chance upon. The Cartier Tiger Collection has been a highlight of 20th century jewelry design since it first appeared in 1928. At Christie’s’ upcoming Magnificent Jewels auction in Geneva, two pieces of tiger jewelry by Cartier are all set to go under the hammer. The onyx and diamond clip brooch and the bracelet with emerald eyes are estimated to sell for about $2.5 million together.

Along with the tag of French fashion house Cartier and the value of the precious metals and gemstones, it’s the history attached to these tigers that has played the role in elevating their value. The two diamond studded wild cats fashioned with onyx and emeralds originate from the legendary collection of the Duchess of Windsor. These pieces were bought by the Duke and Duchess of Windsor from Cartier between 1956 and 1959. At the legendary sale of the Duchess’ collection in 1987, Andrew Lloyd Webber bought them for his then wife, Sarah Brightman. They were a present to her to celebrate the huge London and Broadway success of ‘The Phantom of the Opera’, which he wrote and in which she starred.


The Duchess of Windsor, Sarah Brightman

Seen in the images above is the Duchess of Windsor wearing the iconic Cartier Tiger jewels, at the Gala opening of the new Lido Revue in Paris, 11 Dec 1959. Twenty-nine years later, in 1988, Sarah Brightman was captured wearing the Cartier Tiger brooch and bracelet at The Phantom of the Opera opening party in New York’s Beacon Theatre.

The proceeds from this sale is intended to benefit The Andrew Lloyd Webber Foundation, which significantly supports the arts, music in schools, The Architectural Heritage Fund and awards 30 performing arts scholarships annually.

Wonder whose wrist, the Cartier tiger choosed to rest on glamorously….





Wallis Simpson Cartier bracelet breaks auction record


A bracelet owned by Wallis Simpson, the Duchess of Windsor, whose affair with Edward VIII led to his abdication, has sold for a world record-breaking £4.5m ($7m) at auction.

The Duchess was a leader of fashion and the epitome of elegance and sophistication for her generation and beyond.


David Bennett, chairman of Sotheby’s Jewellery

The diamond, onyx, emerald panther bracelet, was sold by Sotheby’s. The bracelet was fought over by four bidders resulting in the iconic piece of jewellery, which was crafted in Paris in 1952, selling for more than double its pre-sale estimate. The multi-million pound final bid has made the bracelet the most expensive bracelet ever sold at auction, as well as setting a new record for the most expensive Cartier piece sold at auction.


It was one of 20 pieces owned by the Duke and Duchess of Windsor to go under the hammer in the sale, which raised a total of £7,975,550 ($12,417,369m).

A ruby, sapphire, emerald, citrine and diamond Cartier flamingo clip was another big seller reaching £1,721,250 ($2,679,712). All prices include the buyer’s premium. Prior to the sale the jewels had gone on tour to the Middle East, Russia and the US.