Ferrari: What It's Really Like to Drive a Mighty Sexy Beast

IT’S the ultimate in luxury sports cars — noisy, incredible to drive and possibly one of the most gawked-at set of wheels on the road.

But the one thing you will never see come out of the Ferrari factory is one in pink.

“It just doesn’t fit into our whole ethos to be honest,” Ferrari’s Australasia CEO, Herbert Appleroth tells news.com.au. “It’s a brand rule. No Pink. No Pokémon Ferraris!

“There are other colours that aren’t in our DNA as well and they are wonderful colours too but some are perhaps more suited to other brands,’’ he says, ever so diplomatically.

“The most popular colour is still red but we are trying to give as many choices as possible to everyone.”

While red does make up for around a third of Ferrari sales around the world, it is followed by silver and black with white being a colour Appleroth says is trending ‘upwards.’

“Enzo Ferrari used to say a different Ferrari for every Ferrari-ista, as globally we don’t want two cars to be the same.

“We have invested in our dealerships so each one has a tailored made, personalisation area.”

Of course, if you are spending anything from $400,000 to $2.5 million on a Ferrari you may choose to go elsewhere to have it painted pink once you have driven it out of the dealership. But at this point, there won’t be any pinkies brm-brm-brm-ing out of a showroom anytime soon.

“Every Ferrari is customised, personalised or bespoke,” says Mr Appleroth.

“There are many different levels of personalisation from sitting in the dealership and working through all of your options to the tailor-made progamme where you fly to Italy to the factory in Maranello and sit in the atelier and work out your specifications.

“And there is the one-off program where it starts with the chassis and everything is completed around your specifications. But they are very, very rare. Eric Clapton has one like that.”

Mr Appleroth says the car brand produces an ongoing book with all designs from all over the world so they can see what some of the trends and what some cultures are doing when it comes to design.

“Like anything in fashion, we push the boundaries and our personalisation programs allow for our clients to basically create a couture car.”

And who exactly are the people buying these extravagant, mechanically masterful fast cars?

“Actually the car industry is booming,” Appleroth explains. “In our space, the ‘super’ car market, it has never been as good as it is now.

“In our segment, the Ferrari world, we have seen a 48 per cent growth in the last financial year. There are number of factors to it, from our economy doing well, there’s a stability in the market and people are doing well and feeling confident about their primary investment, which is usually real estate.

“There are people who have worked hard and think ‘I want to treat myself’ and they also see a car like this as an investment as the cars appreciate simply because they are so limited and all bespoke.”

While a half million dollar fast car is a mighty big treat-to-self, Mr Appleroth thinks Australians are maturing when it comes to buying ‘luxury’.

“Maybe 10 or 15 years ago luxury was thought of as a bit of snobbery,” he says. “But I think people like to reward themselves now and look up to those who have done well as opposed to the tall poppy thing where we were always ready to cut down anyone who has worked hard for what they’ve got.”

Either way, ‘the Ferrari family’, a term Appleroth has given to Aussies who are in the F-club, turned out in force in Canberra on the weekend at an event that was an ode to all things Italian and car-like, Auto Italia.

Held on the lawns of Old Parliament House there were hundreds of Italian cars at the public event, from the likes of Alfa Romeo, Maserati, Fiat, Lamborghini and Ferrari. Dotted around the lawns and owned by collectors and Italian car enthusiasts the lawns would have never had seen so much car porn in one space at one time.

So, what it’s really like drive a Ferrari:

When the Ferrari dealer handed over the keys to the $400,000 (plus!) Ferrari California T for the weekend test drive to Canberra, I suddenly felt rich. Like, seriously rich. Powerful and successful. OK, I shouldn’t really need a car to tell me that my life is a complete and utter triumph (insert eyeroll emoji here) but hey, this went the right way about doing it.

My little, borrowed friend was red, low-rise, streamlined, well-endowed at the front and bloody sexy.

The fact it can go from zero 100km/h in 3.6 seconds kind of concerned me as I slowly wrangled it out onto a busy and relatively narrow street from its inner city Sydney dealership.

But once I was sorted, seat hoisted up, strapped in and the ‘launch’ button pushed, it was hasta la vista baby.

Not being fluent in motorise — I’l leave all that torque to bona fide motoring writers — I have never seen as many people stare in my direction as much as they did than when I was behind this set of wheels. Needless to say, it is a car that requires your lipstick stays glossy and your hair fresh as you feel like you are on show just as much as your wheels are.

Some peeps stare in sheer wonderment at this marvel of motor engineering while a few look at you like you are an indulgent toss.

Which, as someone who grew up in public housing and where humility and self-deprecation was instilled into us from day one and … oh, stuff it. It’s just a superbly brilliant experience and ride.

We (carefully) motored down to Canberra to the Auto Italia event we’d been invited to and while 110km is our MAX Australian freeway speed (which isn’t even a stroll in Ferrari land) I kept the faith, much to the chagrin of my foot, which could smell the lead it was desperate to pedal.

Look, I’m not going to go all motormouth on you, preferring to go the more luxe and style route.

The fact is, this auto gearbox still has the feel and noise of a manual and the leather and stitching is exquisite and there is plenty of room in the boot and the convertible roof is a cinch to get off, with the push of just one button. Aah. it’s a real ride.

Okay, so if I was ever in the site to afford one, would I? Bloody hell, yes. Even if I nearly do my back in each time I limbo-ed into the drivers seat.

*Melissa was a media guest of Ferrari at the annual Auto Italia event in Canberra.

First seen on news.com.au

Source: Melissa Hoyer


Chanel's 'Gabrielle' Campaign Starring Kristen Stewart

After revealing images of the advertising campaign for CHANEL’s GABRIELLE bag photographed by Karl Lagerfeld, Chanel is unveiling four short films, with Kristen Stewart, Cara Delevingne, Caroline de Maigret and Pharrell Williams, in which the magical and mysterious aura of Gabrielle Chanel is present.

In the first short film, Kristen Stewart, guided by Australian director Daniel Askill, seems to be inhabited by Gabrielle’s soul.

“What we landed on was ultimately the search for Gabrielle’s spirit, and the sort of fight that you can have with the idea of someone disappearing,” the actress explains in the making-of.

“There’s something eerie about the film, but it’s ultimately exuberant. It leads me to her name, Gabrielle, scrawled on the window, it’s like affirmation, I’ve been validated.

It almost represents the first glimpse Gabrielle allows me to have of her, and I get happy.”

Discover the film with Kristen Stewart from today, on Chanel.com, Chanel News and also on social networks, as well as the film’s ‘making of’ from April 6th 2017.

Source: Chanel


90's Nostalgia Reincarnated: New Collection of Chokers by Minimalist Jewellery

Like a phoenix reborn, the return of the 90’s choker in 2016 signified the revival of grunge rock, mood rings, chain wallets, and ripped jeans. An era defined by fashion rebellion.

In 2017, the choker trend continues to dominate, evolving its traditional design to include elaborate hardware, grand bows, clean long lines and thick corset fastenings.

The minimalist jewellery choker collection: a breathtaking range.

The lace up choker is a must-have piece that is available in black, nude or white suede leather. Can lace at front or back of neck for different outfit stylings.

The lariat necktie is available in black and white with gold, rose gold and silver hardware. Must-have celebrity and blogger favourite that can also be worn around the wrist.

Single black leather necktie with gold and rose gold metal alloy hardware. Add style to any outfit with this wardrobe essential. Can also be worn on the wrist.

Source: Minimalist Jewellery


Ovolo: the Fashionable Address Shines for Mercedes-benz Fashion Week Australia’s Launch

The fashion world’s aflutter as IMG officially announced the preliminary schedule of Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia 2017! A star-studded affair was hosted at the event’s newly-crowned Fashion HQ – Ovolo Woolloomooloo.

Over 250 designers, editors, buyers, models and fashionistas alike were in attendance at Fashion HQ, including such notable names as Beth and Tessa MacGraw of MacGraw, Steven Khalil, Dion Lee and Meghan Blake Irwin.

A key highlight shared from the evening included the rise of Swim & Athleisure, with Fashion HQ getting ready to welcome an army of beach-clad fashionistas and activewear lovers thanks to swimwear and athleisure taking prominence for Resort ’18 collections.

Participation figures of retail buyers, overseas fashion editors and even designers continue to increase year-on-year for the only Resort Fashion Week globally.

A significant overseas industry professionals are expected at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia (MBFWA), and the place their expected to call home, Fashion HQ – Ovolo Woolloomooloo.

Mr. David Sude, General Manager of Ovolo Woolloomooloo shared: “Ovolo Woolloomooloo has climbed the ranks to become one of Australia’s greatest hotels, and we’re so honoured to now make it one of the country’s most fashionable.

As Fashion HQ, the hotel will effectively be home not just for industry professionals being chauffeured daily to Carriageworks, but also the hotspot for all fashion week fans looking to get in on the week’s glitz & glamour.”

Fashion Week may be an industry showcase, but the public love to get just as equally involved.

As noted by Mr. Sude, from 14 – 21 May, Fashion HQ will become the epicentre of key Fashion Week events outside of Carriageworks.

The Ovolo Woolloomooloo hotel will host a range of activities including:Livestream of runway shows directly from Carriageworks

  • A Beauty Express Pop-up for hair and makeup treatments pre- and post-show
  • Fashion Week Official Happy Hour @ Ovolo Woolloomooloo’s Lo Lounge
  • Model castings and photoshoots
  • Public fashion seminar at hotel & more

In addition, MBFWA ’17 attendees will also get a taste of Ovolo’s much raved about hospitality, with a mini version of its famed Lo-Lounge occupying space at Carriageworks.

More details on these activities will be offered closer to fashion week.
With the hotel’s social competition well under way, Ovolo’s search for Australia’s Top Fashionista has given new meaning to the phrase: “Aussies got style”.

From stylish ladies on a night out at the Finger Wharf, to fashionable gents treating hotel lobbies are runways, the #OvoloLovesFashion competition is gaining traction as its 1 May entry deadline looms.

Source: Ovolo


Surrogacy Journey Told in New Book, Designer Baby

JAYSON Brundson and his partner Aaron Elias were nervously waiting at the airport ready to bring their newborn to Australia when the worst happened.

After enduring years of paperwork and emotional stress, they finally had their baby — born to a Thai surrogate — in their arms.

But someone had tipped off local officials, and they were detained at Bangkok airport for “human trafficking”.

Their situation was delicate, as the couple had chosen a surrogate in Thailand just before the abandonment of surrogate baby Gammy made international news.

In the wake of Gammy, the Thai Government ordered an audit into IVF clinics which led to closure of the All IVF Center, which Aaron and Jayson were using.

Their surrogate, Supaphorn, was already pregnant.

After the audit of the IVF clinics, the lives of 50 Australian couples — Jason and Aaron included — were thrown into total disarray.

“It was only after intervention from the Foreign Minister, Julie Bishop, who arranged a pact with the Thai Government, which then agreed to allow pregnancies already in progress to continue,” says Aaron.

Aaron said the pair were devastated, and in limbo for months prior to the Thai and Australian government’s intervention, as at one stage, there was every chance they wouldn’t ever be able to bring their son home.

Fortunately, once the governmental issues were resolved, the pair travelled to Bangkok to be at the birth and to bring home their son, Roman. But leaving Thailand wasn’t an easy ride.

“We absolutely abided by new legislations, arduous protocol paperwork and with aid from the Australian embassy and various Thai officials we ended up with a safe return,” said Aaron.

“But en route, someone tipped off Thai customs to our departure and we were detained at the airport for ‘human trafficking’.

“We couldn’t believe it”, Aaron said, recalling the nerve wracking day at the airport.

“We were pulled aside, basically interrogated and asked where the ‘mother’ of our baby boy was.

“We quickly called our beautiful surrogate Supaphorn, who had signed all the appropriate paperwork, so she could come to the airport to reiterate the situation.

“There were last minute negotiations between the Australian Embassy and Thai officials who cleared the charge 15 minutes before the plane was due to take off, so we finally made the trip back home with our new baby.”

It had been a long journey to parenthood for the couple, who have been together for eighteen years.

Fashion designer Jason, and his partner Aaron were regulars on the party scene — enjoying the high flying life of parties, models, and celebrities.

But beneath the surface they had always wanted a baby. They struggled through years of health problems and their business going bankrupt before their dream of parenthood came true.

Aaron has now written a book about the couple’s journey Designer Baby: A Surrogacy Journey from Fashion to Fatherhood.

“I really wanted to write the book so the whole story, from beginning to end, could be told.

“I talk about it all, from Roman’s biological mother, to our Thai surrogate mother, the nay-sayers, Jayson’s fashion business going under during the GFC, his 3 year cancer treatment, the pressure of keeping the pregnancy quiet and everything in between.”

While the marriage equality discussion is still a hot topic, particularly in Australia, ‘gay’ parenting and surrogacy is an even hotter one.

But Aaron says it doesn’t matter what critics say, fatherhood is his “calling”.

“I am a better man today and with Roman in our lives, we are complete, a family,” he tells news.com.au

“He made us understand what it means to have a father’s unconditional love for his child.

“There is nothing else I want more now, except his wellbeing and to be the greatest father in the world to him. I will give my life to him.”

Designer Baby: A Surrogacy Journey from Fashion to Fatherhood. from Impact Press hits the shelves on April 1

First seen on news.com.au

Source: Melissa Hoyer

*Melissa Hoyer has been asked to speak about this ‘modern family’ at the book’s launch