It happens every year: The promises, the resolutions, the attempts to behave yourself. But then lust sets in. It comes from magazines (sorry), TV, movies, anywhere your little pop culture, über-consumer eyes look. You see all these fabulous things you want and you decide you need them. You may not even be sure why. Hence, lust. They are things you put in your home, toys, pets, places to go. They are worth the whole yearend bonus and then some (emphasis on then some). But want them you do and have them you will. Until next year when a whole new crop rises to debunk the list you’ve very carefully curated. To add to the madness, we’d like to offer a few suggestions, some available right here, just a few exits down the LIE. Don’t say we didn’t warn you…
Fit for a King
Nothing says “king of the castle” like a custom-designed throne, choose wisely. It should be opulent, but not ostentatious. It should be rich, but not ridiculous. It should accent the assets collected in the abode (read: castle), yet stand alone. The Provocante is a European Beech satin finish wood frame of clean lines and simple design reflective of the famed Hepplewhite pieces of 18th century England (the chair back shaped like a shield is a classic Hepplewhite characteristic). Accented with striking malachite details, the throne captures the ornamental characteristics of this fine stone. Rightly so, malachite has long been used to channel balance and abundance. It is considered to be “the stone of transformation,” bringing energy and emotions to the surface. Taut black crocodile leather defines the seat, back and arms, all crowned with nailheads. Designed uniquely by Zicana of Westbury, the $9,795 statement piece is a collector’s item welcoming long reads by the fire or indulging in the vice of one’s choice. It is lush and current, and ready to join any collection of heirlooms. zicana.com
Life Behind Bars
For the bicyclist accustomed to finer things, a velocipede that reflects Italian design, state of the art technology and the ease of speed is the answer. Fezzari Performance Bicycles are fairly new to the scene but their commitment to provide any level cyclist with the best quality is proof they are in it for the long haul. The FORE CR-2 is a full carbon performance bike that is both durable and adrenaline friendly. It takes almost two weeks to acquire one due to their 23-point custom setup that includes assembly and tuning, but at $2,249 it’s safe to say this bespoke two-wheeler goes the distance.
Fly Me To the Moon
There is no greater luxury than the luxury of freedom. The ability to fly to the Vineyard for lunch, dinner in AC, a hockey game in Philly or shopping along Boston’s tony Newberry Street are all within reach, yes, but made all the more lovely when a last-minute whim becomes reality. Enter: Private aviation. The Long Island skies are brimming with aviators, making the pastime all the more sociable. For newbies and experienced pilots alike, the Cirrus SR22T is “the one with everything.” This aircraft is easy to learn, easy to handle and easy to maintain with a starting price of $570,000. Interested aviators need only 40 hours to score a license for visually based flying and 40 additional hours to fly instruments, which allows for night flying and through a wider range of weather. Storage at local airports abounds, as do mechanics and partners to buy in on the bird should the commitment seem daunting.
The Sound of Music
There are guitars, and there are guitars. A true enthusiast chooses his wisely, the way any collector chooses his salt. BB King has Lucille, Jimi stuck to his Fender Stratocaster, Baez is never on stage without her Santa Cruz OM and so on. When a music lover, nay, guitar lover, wants to indulge, he calls an artisan to handcraft his instrument, just as many notables have called upon John Monteleone of Islip, yes, Islip, and finearchtops.com. Monteleone is a name that remains high on the list worldwide when discussing talented archtop luthiers. Although his love for the craft originated in repairing vintage guitars, his quest for a better approach to designing sound resulted in ever-evolving innovations. Shown here are Spring and Autumn from the privately owned quartet “The Four Seasons.” Although these babies have found their daddies, a custom six string can be built for you starting at $39,000.
Sailing the seas is an acquired, classic sport. One that requires grace, athleticism and intelligence. It is a far different thing than barreling superficially across the water in a motorboat. It is zen, a meditation on capturing oneness with the majesty of the water. And it takes guts to work with the power of the wind. For luxury sailors, it also requires the commitment of keeping a crew running, maintenance, décor and branding at a whole new level. Elegance can’t be bought, it is refined. To meet this posh indulgence, Oyster presents the 885, available for delivery in 2014 with a price tag of $9.5 million. At 88+ feet she is the largest in the core range, gloriously featuring spacious quarters boasting every imaginable live-aboard amenity in the stateroom and three en suite guest cabins (separate crew quarters with mess and galley, of course). Above, the cockpit is well planned to split to an alfresco dining area and the already generously open deck areas have an extendable hydraulic bathing platform. Plus, her design ensures balance and stability in even the trickiest trade winds. Oh, should your social agenda be too demanding to capture her full use, she makes for a highly desirable (and steady) charter—how’s that for ROI?
Feline fatales date back to the age of Cleopatra, that most exotic (fatale herself) cat lover. Modern suburban haunts may not be practical for big cats, but aficionados can now indulge their wild wishes in a specimen that hails from the most regal breeds. The Bengal Cat is a hybrid of an Asian leopard, where she gets her exotic looks and coat of deep browns and pale creams, and a common house cat, from which she captures her temperament. Claiming your own Bengal can cost anywhere from $800 to $1,500 depending on pattern, head shape and rosette size. Shown here: Max the “stud cat,” on the prowl at Pleasant Pond, Long Island’s local breeder. By appointment: 631/205-5036.
Buying a sports car is too often blamed on a midlife crisis. Rest assured, the deliberate, highly meditated selection of your vintage cruiser has nothing to do with impulse. (Don’t worry, you’re among friends here.) You want a curve hugging, nostalgic roadster that feeds your need for speed and that’s what you should get. May we recommend the 1967 Jaguar XK-E? She will set you back about $130,000, but she is the answer. Upon her release, even Enzo Ferrari called her, “The most beautiful car ever made.” Almost 50 years later, his prescience is holding true. Imagine what your friends will think.
Find this timeless Jaguar along with countless other classic automobiles at Exotic Classics in Syosset. exoticclassics.com
Free Your Soul
Phuket continues to hold strong as the exotic retreat of choice for VIPs, celebrities and other Master of the Universe types. Go all the way and plan your escape to a private paradise in the hills of this islet chez Villa Liberty, your temporary home starting at $2,350 a night. Nestled on “Millionaires Mile,” the villa is a triumph of five separate ocean-facing levels that house luxury living areas, private cinema, gourmet kitchen, five king suites in addition to the master, private pool and white sand beach. Nearby are the upmarket art galleries, restaurants and nightlife that keep this, Thailand’s resort island, in the limelight. Considering the rack rate can be shared for you and almost a dozen of your closest traveling companions, what are you waiting for? libertyphuket.com