Postcard from Stockholm: What Not To Miss in Sweden’s Capital

Photo credit: Fatima Holmgren

Photo credit: Fatima Holmgren

Stockholm – a walkable, genteel city featuring royalty, cutting-edge design, and a fever-pitch foodie scene — is gaining attention as a luxury destination. Team Max visited some years ago, and we asked some friends of Max who are Stockholm natives to help us shape an itinerary for a trip to Sweden’s capital.

 

– Eating

 Where to start in a city with 8 Michelin stars? Celebrity chef Mathias Dahlgren has two restaurants in the renowned Grand Hotel: Matsalen, which boasts 2 stars and a new-every-day menu of seasonal New Scandinavian dishes, and one-star Matbaren, a more casual gastro-bar. Also try two-starred Frantzén, the brainchild of chef Bjorn Frantzén,  which boats what the Guide Michelin called a “particularly interesting wine list.”

Locals point in the direction of Gastrologik, run by Jacob Holmström and Anton Bjuhr with a produce-first philosophy: “The potato is worth exactly as much as the truffle. It is not nature that decides what´s good or bad, it’s you and me,” reads the manifesto on the restaurant’s website.

 

Photo credit: Fatima Holmgren

Photo credit: Fatima Holmgren

– Excursions

Start by walking around Gamla stan, the old town center, which is lined with coffee bars and small boutiques. Head down Strandvägen to Djurgården, a leafy island bound by bridges to the rest of the city. There’s enough to do for a whole day: the Grona Lund amusement park; Skansen, an outdoor museum dotted with historic houses moved from all around the country; and the iconic Vasa Museum, which boasts a preserved Viking ship.

 Elsewhere in the city, locals recommend the Hallwyl Museum, in a former Victorian-era castle, and the Modern Museum in Skeppsholmen. Once you’ve taken in the quaint blocks and arching bridges, hop on a ferry to one of the outer islands for a trip to the country.

 

– Shopping

 Looking for Swedish-born design? Stop in at Svensk Tenn, the venerable home-decor house known for its colorful prints and seen in chic homes around the world. Another destination is Design Torget, which features high-design items from a variety of famous and undiscovered designers, often for a limited time.

If you’d like to take home some of the crystal for which Sweden is famous, try the grand old department store NK, which stocks local favorites Orrefors and Kosta Boda. They have a range of crystal goblet sizes not found elsewhere.

 

 

Postcard from Bodrum: Must-See Sights in Turkey’s Top Beach Resort

The Mandarin Oriental Bodrum from the air.

The Mandarin Oriental Bodrum from the air.

Bodrum, the chic Turkish seaside resort, is known for its sparkling beaches and relaxed vibe. We asked friends of Max Luxe who have summered in the area for years to tell us what to visit on this picturesque Aegean Sea peninsula.

– Yachting

Yacht owners aren’t the only ones excited about Bodrum’s new Palmarina, a mega-yacht basin ringed by hotels, restaurants, and luxury shops. The complex includes an outpost of Italian billionaire Flavio Briatore’s night club, somewhat eponymously named Billionaire, as well as Nobu and Cipriani restaurants. Owned by an international shipping conglomerate, the marina has all the services yacht owners need — and a brokerage in case you’d like to pick up a new boat while there.

– Hotels

The chicest hotel in the Bodrum area is the new Mandarin Oriental, which opened in July 2014. The 109-room beachfront property is built into a hillside forested with olive trees. Visitors get the usual plethora of luxury services, including impossibly stunning pools, a spa, and ten restaurants and bars, which often feature international DJs. Jetting in with a large crowd? See if you can book the 4-bedroom, 7-person duplex suite with private pool (from 2000 euros per night).

bodrum-hotel-blue-beach-05

– Beaches

If sand is your favorite part of a luxurious vacation, you have two choices: beach clubs, which offer full-service amenities, and quieter stretches of coast that you can reach by boat.

The area’s beach clubs typically welcome day visitors, who can get access to restaurants, beach chairs and umbrellas, pillows, drinks, shower and changing facilities, and even cooling mists. Some of these clubs are on the beach in front of hotels. They tend to get crowded, so arrive early.

Those in the know single out the beach clubs at Xuma, Dodo, Kuum, Maki, Maçakızı, Bej, and Moon Beach.

To visit several of the area’s beaches and the nearby islands, consider chartering a captained boat for a few days’ cruise. Beaches you may want to visit include Kisebükü, which can only be reached by sea. Several luxury charter companies offer crewed itineraries on sailboats, motor yachts and traditional Turkish gullet boats, including stops at some of the prettiest beaches like English Harbor. Among them: Europa Yachting, Blue Cruise Bodrum, and Akasia Yachting.

20090830 Boat to Bodrum_dsc6651

– Antiquities

The Bodrum peninsula boasts some spectacular ancient sites, as do many of the towns in coastal Turkey. A huge amphitheater from the fourth century BC graces the town, as well as St. Peter’s Castle, a Crusader-era fortress, which is now the Underwater Archaeology Museum. History scholars will note that the town, once called Halicarnassus, was home to the noted Mausoleum, a king’s tomb, now in ruins, that was one of the ancient world’s Seven Wonders.

How to Work Out Like a Surfer — Without Surf

How to Work Out Like a Surfer -- Without Surf

The Indo Board trainer is a fun way to work on your balance and strengthen your core when you’re not near the ocean.

Fitness enthusiasts have discovered what surfers have known for some time: the Indo Board trainer is a fun way to work on your balance and strengthen your core when you’re not near the ocean. This board-and-roller combo is now moving out of surf shops and into stores far from the shore. It’s also sold online on the company’s site and elsewhere.

To picture how the board works, visualize a flat surfboard on top of a rolling cylinder. You stand on the board and try to balance so the board doesn’t touch the ground. There’s also a cushion to use instead of the roller. Once you’re balanced, try to stay in alignment while doing a variety of exercises. Sound easy? It’s not, which is what makes it a good workout.

The idea is to use your abdominal muscles to maintain control of your body. This concept of core training has spawned a number of exercise accessories — the Balance Board and yoga balls among others — but few have unified balancing with the fun of surfing and other boarding sports.

Team Max tested an Indo Board and found it tough to master, but thrilling. Getting the board to balance on the roller takes patience and concentration. Once it balances, keeping the board airborne atop the roller is nearly impossible. It’s easy to see how getting it right could become a fitness addiction.

The top-of-the-line offering is the Indo Pro Training Pack ($324.95), which includes a large roller, a cushion, and a board long enough for a 6-foot-tall person. The boards come in a variety of sizes as well as designs, from natural to retro surf scenes.

Balance is essential not just for surfing, snowboarding, and skateboarding, but also for personal training of all kinds. It’s integral to the latest fitness crazes, like spinning, boxing, and CrossFit.  You can work out like a pro: the U.S. surf team is already using Indo Boards, the company says.

How to Track Your Fitness When You’re Not Exercising

Maximize the amount of moving around you do while you are going about your day.

Maximize the amount of moving around you do while you are going about your day.

How much exercise are you getting when you aren’t exercising? That’s the question that a new generation of personal fitness trackers ask. Worn on your wrist or as a pendant, these high-tech devices track your fitness when you’re not exercising by recording the number of steps you take and how fast you’re moving. Paired with information you enter into an app or on a computer about your food intake and what kind of exercise you’re doing, these fitness trackers can tell you exactly how many calories you’re burning, when you’re the most active, and even how well you’re sleeping.

The idea is to maximize the amount of moving around you do while you are going about your day: walking from the car to the door, ambling around the grocery store or the office, going to and from your table at a restaurant. All this walking adds up – and your tracker will tell you exactly how much. If you’re not walking enough each day, you’ll know, and be able to take action by doing a few laps around the office, getting off the subway a stop early and walking home, or adding in some jumping jacks at your desk. (Of course you can always up your quotient of formal exercise by going to the gym, jogging, cycling, or the like — but you may not have time for that in your busy day.) You can make this time count toward your fitness goals. If you’re meeting your steps-per-day or active-minutes-per-day goals too easily, just raise them.

Team Max has been using the FitBit this summer to track our daily number of steps. We started with the default goal of 10,000 steps per day. That’s not much in New York City, where MaxMyInterest is headquartered; here, most people walk much more than that just to get around town, and we typically found our rubber FitBit bracelets buzzing triumphantly before dinnertime. But when out of the city, we found that the amount of time spent in cars traveling between one place and the next cut down severely on our walking. A day in the country could tank our FitBit results, so much so that we resorted to extra walking on purpose. And that, of course, is the point. If you are thinking of getting a fitbit to help you keep track of your steps (or just for general exercise), then you might be wondering is it worth getting the heart rate monitor? And hopefully when I wrote “extra walking on purpose”, will tell you all that you need to know, because yes they are worth it.

It’s also possible to look chic while wearing these trackers, even at the office. Fashion maven Tory Burch is now selling a line of FitBit Flex bracelets and pendants, ranging from patterned rubber bracelets to a metal hinged version ($195). Even in FitBit’s original black or blue, it’s always stylish to be in shape.

Academic Vacations: How to Learn While Traveling

Academic Vacations: How to Learn While Traveling

On academic vacations, you can learn about the history, art and context of the places you visit.

For some travelers, the ultimate in luxury is bringing a professor along on your vacation. On academic vacations, you can learn about the history, art, and context of the places you visit.

Many top universities offer accompanied academic vacations to their alumni, and some major museums, like the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City, host similar trips for their members. Like any luxury small-group tour, the trips include hotel stays, dining and wine, and guided visits to attractions. What’s different: the lectures travelers can attend daily by professors or researchers from the sponsoring institution, who talk about their area of expertise as it applies to the region the group is visiting. Travelers who choose these trips tend to be a self-selected cohort of professionals with shared interests. Participants are typically 50 and older; on family tours, travelers often include grandparents and their grandchildren. It’s not always necessary to be an alum of a particular university to join the trip, and two or more universities often co-host a tour.

Tom Price, an adjunct instructor at the University of Arizona who serves as the faculty leader for many of the school’s alumni tours, suggests knowing which professional tour operator is running each trip. He says the operators handle all logistics and arrangements for the sponsoring school, and their quality differs. Price recommends Odysseys, a Newton, Massachusetts-based operator, for well-run tours.

The most interesting tour Price has led, he says, was a joint Arizona-University of California Berkeley trip that began in Bucharest. From there, the alumni boarded a boat and traveled the Black Sea to Yalta, Odessa, and up the Dneiper River, ending in Kiev, Ukraine.

Recently, he led a two-and-a-half week alumni trip to Turkey, featuring five days in Istanbul, then Troy, Pergamum, Ephesus, Izmir, and four days on yachts exploring Roman ruins and tiny coves before ending in Antalya, a Greek and Roman town that’s now a beach resort.

It’s possible to find an alumni tour going to nearly any exotic locale — or many of them. This September and October, Columbia University’s alumni association is sponsoring a 23-day round-the-world trip. Starting in Orlando, alumni board a private Boeing 757 and jet off to a global best-of itinerary encompassing Machu Picchu, Easter Island, Samoa, Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, the temples at Angkor in Cambodia, the Taj Mahal, the Serengeti, Petra in Jordan, and Morocco. Double occupancy is $70,950.

In 2015, the Met is offering members trips to Mexico (a contemporary art tour), Bavaria and Bohemia, Cuba, Brazil, Japan, and a family tour to China, among other voyages. Several tours on offer include small-ship cruises on picturesque waterways like the Volga River, the Black Sea, the Baltic, and the Mediterranean. One academic vacation to Roman Tunisia, in April 2015, features Elizabeth Milleker, a senior research fellow at the Met, and costs $8,995 per person excluding airfare.

Stanford University’s alumni itineraries include two weeks in Saudi Arabia this March, learning about oil production and the art and culture of the desert country, with a side trip to Bahrain. The Saudi trip is $10,495 and features faculty leader Abbas Milani, director of Iranian Studies at the university and a research fellow at the Hoover Institution. Stanford alumni can also do a marine-biology tour of Indonesia, heli-hiking in British Columbia, or an Indian voyage featuring a famous camel fair.

If learning something new in a new place is what you want from your vacations, an academic vacation might be for you.

Extreme Endurance Running: Q&A With World Record Holder Christopher Solarz

Chris Solarz finishes the February 2011 Antarctica Marathon, coming in second in 3 hours, 32 minutes.

Chris Solarz finishes the February 2011 Antarctica Marathon, coming in second in 3 hours, 32 minutes.

Many professionals wake up early to go cycling or running before work. But the average marathoner has nothing on Christopher Solarz, managing director of alternative-investment consulting firm Cliffwater LLC in New York City. A holder of multiple Guinness-certified world records, Solarz is an extreme endurance runner who specializes in the planet’s most out-there, ridiculously torturous races, traveling extensively to put himself in difficult positions all over the world. Max Luxe asked Solarz some questions about what he does and why he does it.

What are the three craziest races you’ve done?

The craziest thing I did was in May 2014, the Epic 5, which is 5 Ironmans in 5 days on 5 Hawaiian islands. It started in Kauai, then Oahu, Molokai, Maui, and the Big Island. It was like “The Amazing Race.” It took me 17 hours each day to finish these races. Then, rather than get any true rest, my support crew and I had to return the rental car, pack the bike into a bike box, then fly to the next island. On the other end, I had to get the rental car, check into a new hotel, and get to the start line. I didn’t sleep in a bed for three of the nights. The whole thing was an amazing blur of logistics.

Then I ran the Antarctica marathon in February 2011, which was summer there. On that day, it was about 20 degrees in Antarctica and 10 degrees in New York City. We were 500 miles north of the South Pole, on the northern tip of Antarctica, on a research base. When I thought of the elements I’d be facing, I thought it would be ice and snow, but it was actually very muddy and windy.

The third craziest thing would be swimming around Manhattan in 2002. That one was very rewarding. I spent a lot of time training. It was the most challenging thing I’d ever done. It took me nine hours to swim the 28.5 miles.

How many races have you run?

I ran a marathon in all 50 states, all seven continents, all of the Australian states and territories, half of the European Union, and one-third of the Canadian provinces. It’s a total of 40 different countries. That’s one of the things I’m most proud of. It’s a great way to see different places. When I go to these places and I meet different people along the run or at the pasta party, I realize how like-minded everyone is and how small the world is. I love that. I feel right at home.

When did you start extreme endurance running?

I ran the Philadelphia marathon in 1996, my freshman year at the University of Pennsylvania. I ran it again in 1997, 1998, and 1999. I kind of got hooked that way. I did my first Ironman in 1999. That was the real start.

Who’s on your support crew for races?

It’s usually my wife, Bea. She’s a doctor, so that’s great. She knows me better than everyone. I call on her for all my Guinness world records, 100-mile races, everything. We ran the New York City marathon together every single year since 2005. This will be the first year we will miss doing it together, but for a good reason. I’ll run, and she’ll be eight months pregnant with our second baby then so she won’t run. We had our first baby two years ago and she hasn’t been able to train as much since then.

Why are you interested in extreme endurance sports and running?

I find so much joy in pushing myself. I haven’t yet found my limits. I believe your limit is found when you get pushed to a breaking point and say that you can no longer go on. That’s what life is about, challenging yourself, being inspired by your surroundings, finding what’s amazing about the human body. I don’t think I’m an exceptional athlete. I think anyone can do what I can do. I train twice a day usually. I’m out with my wife or my friends running. The world would be a much happier place if everyone found the same passion for extreme endurance sports and running that I do.

Aside from all this, you have a serious day job too.

We are an alternative investment consultant, advising large U.S. pension plans on their alternative investments. I specialize in global macro hedge funds, helping advise pensions on their decisions and manager selections.

Don’t Miss Sights in Copenhagen

Small boats pepper Copenhagen's canals.

Small boats pepper Copenhagen’s canals.

Need to escape the summer heat? Northern Europe is a perfect place for a luxe city vacation. Team Max recently visited Copenhagen to scope out the Danish capital’s best offerings. Here are some postcards from Copenhagen.

Dinner at Restaurant Bror, where the menu changes daily.

Dinner at Restaurant Bror, where the menu changes daily.

Food
With Noma named the world’s top restaurant several years running, it’s no secret that Copenhagen is one of the best cities for dining out. It’s tough to get reservations at Noma, but the restaurant’s alumni chefs have spun out their own network of eateries throughout Scandinavia, many of which are right here. (Noma helpfully lists them on its own website).

One such place, Restaurant Bror, is the brainchild of Samuel Nutter and Victor Wagman, former sous chefs at Noma. The menu, which features the sort of hyper-local, ingredient-centric, carefully-sourced New Nordic cuisine that lures foodies to town, changes every night. Every table gets the tasting menu (there’s a vegetarian option available), and diners can add on extra courses or wine pairings at will, in addition to a short a la carte wine list.

A sign for the Street Food market on Papiroen island.

A sign for the Street Food market on Papiroen island.

On a recent summer night, the menu at Bror featured a garden’s worth of vegetables and herbs; wild mushrooms; minted new potatoes; grilled plaice with spring onions and garlic; and homemade lavender ice cream with berries. The fresh butter for the bread came with either pine salt or smoked bone marrow mixed in. The bright, art-filled space on a quiet street in the center of town was bustling and casual, with diners in jeans and even families in attendance.

In addition to restaurant dining, food trucks and market stalls have become the harbingers of food trends worldwide, and in Copenhagen these are some of the best places to sample chefs’ experiments. Check out the Copenhagen Street Food market, an assortment of carts and stalls in a giant hangar-like space on tiny Papiroen island in the canal-laced neighborhood of Christianshavn. Lunch could consist of cod and chips, tacos of all descriptions, or Thai noodles, all washed down with beer and eaten at picnic tables by the water’s edge. Or visit the Torvehallerne market for a less ad-hoc experience, with permanent stalls selling produce, fine ingredients, and chefs’ tools as well as restaurants serving sushi, tapas, and moules frites.

Outdoor art with a view across the Oresund to Sweden at the Louisiana Museum.

Outdoor art with a view across the Oresund to Sweden at the Louisiana Museum.

Art
If contemporary art is your passion, you’ll want to hop 40 km north of Copenhagen to the Louisiana museum, which boasts a world-class collection of both indoor works and outdoor sculpture set in a beautiful villa and gardens. The museum, designed by noted Danish architects Jørgen Bo and Vilhelm Wohlert, opened in 1958 in the coastal town of Humlebaek. Overlooking the Oresund, the sound between Denmark and Sweden, the museum features greatest-hits artists (Giacometti, Moore, Calder, Johns) as well as a series of sweeping spaces for traveling exhibitions (a comprehensive retrospective of Emil Nolde and a look at Philip Guston’s work were both up in the summer of 2014). On the grounds, site-specific works stud the gardens and woods, many of which are designed for visitors to climb.

The courtyard at the Queen's palace, Amalienborg.

The courtyard at the Queen’s palace, Amalienborg.

Tourist Fun
Copenhagen’s best-known tourist attraction, Tivoli Gardens, is the original theme park experience. Go at night, when the whole park lights up, and stay for the 10:45PM illumination show on the lake.

Anyone interested in architecture, royalty, or European history will want to visit Amalienborg Palace , where the Queen and her family live. Visitors can tour one wing of the palace, which showcases not only the rooms and objects associated with past monarchs, but also the intertwined family tree of European royalty, virtually all of whom call Queen Margarethe II cousin.

Shopping is less of a draw now that many of the best Danish brands are easily available in New York or London, but there are some uniquely Danish design stores like Illium Bolighus and Hay along the Stroget pedestrian shopping street.

Because Copenhagen is a canal city, a boat tour – ubiquitous on the waterways – is the best way to see landmarks like the old stock exchange building with its entwined dragon-tail tower. Visitors can also rent kayaks (Kayak Republic offers this service) or bikes for a more authentically local experience.

The Max Luxe Blog is purely editorial, not advertising. We showcase products, destinations, and solutions we think Max members will find useful. Max does not receive compensation for mentions on the Max Luxe blog.

Street Art: Stephen Powers Paints the Walls

Harajuku — the chic Tokyo neighborhood that spawned a worldwide obsession with cute Japanese clothes and accessories — has been graffitied. A long wall in the hip shopping district now bears the painted legend “NOW IS FOREVER,” in massive block letters.

Celebrated Brooklyn artist Stephen Powers, who started in the 1980s as the graffiti artist ESPO and has been painting walls and canvases ever since, flew to Tokyo in April on a commission from Marc Jacobs. The international fashion powerhouse brought in Powers to sign his new book, “A Love Letter to the City,” at Bookmarc, its high-end bookstore.

Powers took out his spray paints and paint brushes and started transforming the walls nearby. As he worked, sometimes wearing a gas mask to ward off paint fumes, residents and bystanders stared or posed for pictures, holding up peace signs.

It’s a routine he’s followed in other cities, where he and his crew turn swaths of urban landscape into dramatic murals. The words used depend on the location. In Charleroi, Belgium, Powers recently inscribed “Bisous m’chou” (“Kisses, darling”) across the facade of the Charleroi Expo, echoing the endearment that local grandmothers whisper to their grandchildren, he wrote on his blog. In Baltimore this spring, Powers painted  “FOREVER TOGETHER” and “I AM HERE BECAUSE IT’S HOME” on a block of vacant houses scheduled to be demolished.

Street art has gained a following among serious collectors, spawning a movement from cinderblock walls into galleries. Artists like the anonymous British graffiti impresario Banksy now command hefty price tags when their works go up for sale. At the intersection of gentrification and urban grittiness, the street-art-chic trend has plenty of runway.

The Max Luxe Blog is purely editorial, not advertising. We showcase products, destinations, and solutions we think Max members will find useful. Max does not receive compensation for mentions on the Max Luxe blog.

A New Rum for Summer: Copacabana 1940 Añejo

Copacabana 1940 and rum-glazed shrimp at the launch party

Copacabana 1940 and rum-glazed shrimp at the launch party

There’s nothing like a new rum for summer sipping.

Beautiful people gathered on July 8 at New York’s Copacabana night club to celebrate the launch of a new rum, Copacabana 1940 Añejo. Celebrity chef Alex Garcia partnered with restaurateur Spencer Rothschild to develop this new rum, which they served in handcrafted cocktails and in hors d’oeuvres like rum-glazed shrimp. Guests looked out onto the Times Square crowds from the lounge’s glass atrium. Hundreds of invited guests sipped their drinks as DJ Miguelito performed and dancers from Melanie Torres’ Dance on Two Studio twirled.

“We wanted to pay homage to 1940’s New York City, a time when the Big Apple was becoming the capital of commerce, and fashion and music ruled the night,” Rothschild told Max Luxe.
The new spirits brand, produced by Barrio Spirits and based in New York, takes its name from the pair’s celebrated nightclub, as celebrated in the song (“At the Copa, Copacabana…”).

The rum itself, which Garcia helped design, is made in Panama at the noted Las Cabras distillery in Herrera. It’s now on sale exclusively in New York State. Rothschild described his new añejo, or aged rum, as a “rich, balanced, sensual rum with strong hints of citrus and a light caramel and almond finish.”

This is the first beverage brand for Barrio, which owns a list of popular and chic restaurants across New York City (A.G. Kitchen, Good Enough to Eat, Oval Cafe, Ramen.Co, Amigos Mexican Bar & Restaurant, as well as the Copacabana). Garcia, who is Cuban, is a celebrity chef on the Food Network’s “Melting Pot.” Diners have been flocking to his interpretation of Latin cuisine for many years at New York restaurants like Patria, Erizo Latino, and Babalu. Rothschild similarly has a long history of owning popular restaurants in New York, including Union Pacific, Rain, Main Street, Django and BLT Prime.

The concept of a chef-centered rum plays to diners’ growing interest in chefs and their culinary personalities and their ability to pair food and drinks. Restauranteurs and other hospitality buyers are laser-focused on taste when it comes to rum, but they are beginning to develop an interest in rum as an ingredient, Rothschild said. As they sample his new rum, buyers typically ask to try it both as a drink and as part of a dish. If the crowd’s reaction at Tuesday’s launch party is any indication, there may be a new contender in the market for premium rum.

The Max Luxe Blog is purely editorial, not advertising. We showcase products, destinations, and solutions we think Max members will find useful. Max does not receive compensation for mentions on the Max Luxe blog.

Bespoke Jewelry from Jyoti New York

The Hidden Scroll ring hides messages of love.

The Hidden Scroll ring hides messages of love.

Looking for the perfect gift to complement a very special occasion? Why not order bespoke jewelry?

That’s the question more people are asking. One couple recently worked with New York marque Jyoti New York to design an engagement ring featuring a pink diamond with side scrolls concealing engraved messages of love. The “Hidden Scroll” ring memorialized their time in Rome and included a snap-off pave diamond cover that the bride, a physician, could take off for hospital work.

Another woman worked with Jyoti to design a “Windows of Perception” necklace of diamonds in a stark rectangular setting that works both as a pendant and as a clasp for a lush three-strand pearl ensemble.

The creative mind behind the brand is Jyoti Singhvi, 36, a seventh-generation jeweler whose family once crafted gems for the Indian nobility in Delhi. After growing up surrounded by beautiful, custom-designed jewelry in India and then in Ohio, Singhvi began designing her own pieces as a young teen. She went to MIT and Harvard, then worked for jewelers such as Cartier before founding her own brand. Her work is available online.

Jyoti’s custom-designed “storytelling” jewelry starts with a meeting, she says: “It’s one-of-a-kind, designed to tell your personal story about all the important things that have happened to you.”

The Windows of Perception necklace can be worn either with massed strands of pearls or as a pendant.

The Windows of Perception necklace can be worn either with massed strands of pearls or as a pendant.

The brand’s ready-to-wear collections focus on “mindfulness,” she says. A “Bubbles” range brings together the joy and laughter of champagne, baths, and popping bubbles. The “Coeur” line includes a center diamond surrounded by diamond petals evoking your connection to those you love and what you value. These values are a part of what make such precious gems and jewelry so captivating, and show the kind of mind that can take This knowledge about the stones and turn them into something beyond their original form.

The collections are designed for a woman who moves seamlessly between galas and boardrooms. The “Cherry Blossoms in Snow” necklace, a fountain of diamonds and pink tourmaline set in white gold ($112,250), seems destined for the red carpet. The necklace would pair well with the “Palace of Versailles” cuff ($63,600), a delicately filigreed bracelet with 4 carats of diamonds set into white and yellow gold.

“The modern-day woman is very busy, running on all cylinders,” says Singhvi, who could be describing her own life. “She’s a woman, a mother, a philanthropist, with a successful career.”

The Max Luxe Blog is purely editorial, not advertising. We showcase products, destinations, and solutions we think Max members will find useful. Max does not receive compensation for mentions on the Max Luxe blog.