[caption id="attachment_22834" align="alignnone" width="1228"] Carla Bruni. © Mathieu ZAZZO[/caption] Carla Bruni will be back on stage at the Opéra Garnier Monte-Carlo on November 29, after having already performed here in 2013. Talking about her new album, due out on October 6, Bruni recalls a conversation with songwriter David Foster. ”Have you ever thought of singing in English?,” he asked her in the spring of 2014, after a concert she had just given in Los Angeles. Sing in English? Carla Bruni had already done so on her second album, No Promises (2005), putting to music the verses of Dorothy Parker and Anglo-Saxon poets of the romantic era. For the songwriter, the question was rather about her legitimacy to write in the language of Lou Reed. David Foster, also president of Verve - the American label of the French singer - insisted and then proposed to record a cover album. After a long hesitation, Carla Bruni agreed. While the French Touch generally describes Parisian electronic music of the 2000s, the term also has a wider meaning: it is an effortless elegance, a light sensuality, a "je ne sais quoi". And on her new album, she gives even the most American of the pop hymns - songs that seem as far away from France as the Sunset Strip – this touch. Of course, Foster's arrangement has, according to Carla Bruni, brought "something grandiose to the music". Melodic, warm but minimalist and often filled with malice, the cover songs have retained the universal charm of the original, while bringing a touch of sensuality, almost as if Carla Bruni and David Foster had written them themselves. The French Touch album, scheduled for release on October 6, extends from rock classics ("A Perfect Day" by Lou Reed among others) to the old standards ("Moon River", "Love Hurts , "Crazy"), but all the pieces share a particular quality, as Carla Bruni describes so accurately: "intimacy."
The Third Edition of Top Marques Watches & Jewellery drew to a close last weekend after a three-day display of innovation, design and breath-taking beauty. The annual event in the Hôtel Hermitage Monte-Carlo was also marked by overwhelming generosity – with more than €60,000 raised for the show’s sponsor, Monaco Disease Power. Monaco Disease Power works with the families of children with disabilities, and money raised through a charity auction and tombola at the show’s Opening Cocktail will go towards the creation of a second residential home. [gallery size="full" td_select_gallery_slide="slide" ids="22842,22841,22840,22839,22838,22836"] Prizes that went under the hammer included a Breguet watch donated by H.S.H Prince Albert II of Monaco, high patron of both Monaco Disease Power and Top Marques Watches & Jewellery. Muriel Natali-Laure, President of Monaco Disease Power, said on Monday, October 2: “On behalf of the people and families affected by mental disability and autism, I would like to sincerely thank H.S.H Prince Albert II for his support, as well as all the donors for their generosity. I would also like to thank the organisers of Top Marques Watches, a partner and loyal supporter of Monaco Disease Power, who teamed up with us for this wonderful event.” The ‘Pop-up’ watch and jewellery show took place from September 28 to 30 in one of Monaco’s most picturesque settings, the Salle Belle Epoque. Highlights of the exhibition were haute horologer collections by leading luxury brands such as Greubel Forsey, Franck Muller, DeWitt and Tag Heuer. Also receiving wonderful reviews were timepieces by new brands HESJY and Nunzio La Vecchia, the latter more widely known for electric supercars than the intricate timepieces he was exhibiting. The timepieces were showcased alongside stunning jewellery displays by Monegasque designers Jasré, H.R.H jewels and Sandra Bilboé Joaillerie, as well as an ethereal exhibition by artist Isabelle Arpagian, who creates artwork for castles and art collectors. Monaco’s only exhibition dedicated to watches and jewellery was organised by the team behind Top Marques Monaco, the Principality’s premier supercar show held every April. It follows the same winning formula where all luxury items on display are for sale, with a number of significant purchases having been made during the show. Nunzio La Vecchia confirmed that he had sold six watches from his debuting collection with a price tag of €180,000 each. Manoj Bairstow, Managing Director of Top Marques Monaco, said: “Top Marques Watches & Jewellery only began three years ago and I am very proud of how far the event has come in such a short amount of time. “I thought this year’s exhibition was first class: the exhibitors were of very high quality and their stands literally sparkled in the stunning Salle Belle Epoque. “I would like to thank everyone who participated in the show, as well as our partners La Société des Bains de Mer, the Directorate of Tourism and Conventions, Marzocco real estate, Elena Silvodaeva Exclusive and Villa Sandi, who provided the excellent wines for our cocktail parties. “I would also like to send a massive thank you to everyone who gave so generously to our charity auction and tombola. In just three years of Top Marques Watches we have managed to raise more than €200,000 for Monaco Disease Power which I believe is a huge achievement by all involved. Thank you.” The Fourth Edition of Top Marques Watches & Jewellery will take place from September 27 to 29, 2018. www.topmarqueswatches.com. Meanwhile the 15th Anniversary Edition of Top Marques Monaco will be held from April 19 to 22, 2018. www.topmarquesmonaco.com
[caption id="attachment_1137" align="alignnone" width="567"] Photo: © Monaco Yacht Show.[/caption] Certainly one of the highlights of the Monaco Yacht Show week - which closed on Saturday, September 30 - was the fundraising dinner for the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation held on Thursday, September 28, during which Leonardo DiCaprio was honoured with a special award recognising his environmental activism. Forty-two year-old DiCaprio is one of the world’s best known environmental activists and has raised hundreds of millions of dollars to fund ecological projects. During his speech, HSH Prince Albert praised all those activists who are demanding urgent action to save the world’s oceans. Before the ceremony, the actor told Vogue magazine about the seriousness of global warming, which most scientists believe is already causing famine, floods and extreme weather across the globe. Earlier in the week, Prince Albert emphasised the importance of the MYS for the Principality. “This yacht show is so much part of the contemporary image of Monaco now. It’s really ingrained into the fabric of the community, and, internationally, I think it’s really helped in the promotion of the Principality. The fact that we’ve been able to associate different types of awards to the yacht show in terms of sustainability; the Wood Forever pact that we’ve introduced to the yachting industry and, of course, the fact that this show is carbon neutral, makes it overall not only about the beautiful yachts […] but a great ambassador for the Principality in terms of prestige and showcasing Monaco as a centre for the yachting industry,” he told superyacht.com.
READ MORE: Monaco Yacht Show opens with high security
As part of the Monaco Yacht Show, the Monaco Yacht Club has hosted a specialised event for industry players, the Yachting Security Forum. On Wednesday, September 27, the first day of the two-day forum, Rear-Admiral Dominique Riban, Director of the Monaco Agency for Digital Security, spoke on the topic of computer threats and their consequences. Due to the increasing dependence on computerisation, yacht owners must take into account the security of the computer systems they use, the forum was told. The purpose of the Yachting Security Forum is to take stock of yachting safety solutions worldwide. Other participants on Wednesday included Fabrice Marquet, Director of MonacoTech, and Grégoire Germain, Head of Defensive IT and Cybersecurity at Thales.
As the world’s premier luxury Yacht Show opened on Wednesday, September 27, in Monaco’s Port Hercule under slightly cloudy skies, security was at a premium. While in previous years a quick look at a badge was enough, this year personal searches are more thorough at all 16 entry points. Mindful of the fact that security must be strong on all sides, the maritime authorities have insisted on that specific identification for all vessels must be presented during the Show. In addition, a steel rope across the harbour entrance acts as a deterrent to any seaborne intrusion. All entrances and exits will be closed from 01:00 until 07:00 in the morning up until the end of the Show on Saturday, September 30. The total value of yachts attending the Show amounts to 4.5 billion euros, and over 60 percent of the yachts at anchor outside Port Hercule are currently for sale, according to yachhtharbour.com. Informa, the owner of the Monaco Yacht Show, has acquired five major US yacht shows during 2017, according to yachhtharbour.com.
Until Sunday 7 January 2018, Oceanographic Museum of Monaco Exhibition of monumental works on the theme “Borderline” by Philippe Pasqua Information: +377 93 15 36 00
Until Sunday 5 November, Exotic Garden Exhibition: “When sculptures blossom”, presented by artists from the Monegasque National Committee of the UNESCO International Association of Art (IAA) Information: +377 93 15 29 80
Thursday 2 and Saturday 4 November, 8 pm, Monte-Carlo Opera – Salle Garnier La Cenerentola by Gioachino Rossini with Edgardo Rocha, Nicola Alaimo, Carlos Chausson, Rebeca Olvera, Cecilia Bartoli, the Monte-Carlo Opera Chorus and the Prince’s Musicians, conducted by Gianluca Capuano. Information: +377 98 06 28 28