Over the last few years I have amassed a pretty respectable watch collection. Certainly I feel privileged to own timepieces that I could only have dreamed about a few years ago. Compared to many serious collectors my selection is pretty humble and contains no complications. I met a Singapore entrepreneur a few years ago who has a staggering gambit of around 250 watches. He stores them in vaults in customised cases (of 25), which he deposits on a monthly basis. As they are all mechanical he also needs a pretty decent watch winder (or several) to keep selected models running. » Read more

A few years ago I was very privileged to buy a home for cash due to a very prosperous UK housing market. This good fortune afforded me the option to work as a freelance Interior designer and also renovate houses for a living. I also took a job in real estate as a legitimate way of looking round people’s homes for inspiration. Innovative architecture has always fascinated me and in particular historical buildings. Certainly in Europe some of the buildings are beautifully crafted and a delight to view. In contrast Australian mainly doesn’t have the same heritage and a lot of the dwellings are generic. Certainly progressive architects like Stuart Tanner are trying to change this perception by designing modern masterpieces like Dunalley House. » Read more

Probably the only sport that really appeals to me (with the exception of the soccer world cup) is tennis. This year fanatics were rewarded with a highly memorable final at the Australian Open. Arguably the two greatest tennis players Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal dueled for nearly five hours. Previously these two legends had suffered with severe injuries and there was doubt if they would even be able to compete. In the end Federer prevailed and won a coveted 18th Gram slam title. He also managed to beat Rafa in subsequent APT tournaments keeping the dream alive. However, he was shrewd enough to take a sabbatical (to focus on Wimbledon) from the French Open because no one can upstage the ‘King of Clay’ at this event. » Read more

Surprisingly in Australia, Grand Designs UK and New Zealand are given more exposure than the home grown version. A few years ago when we emigrated to this fantastic country my wife’s cousin bought us a DVD set of Grand Designs Australia. The show is hosted by the charismatic Peter Maddison who is a renowned architect in his own right. I had the pleasure of meeting him at Adelaide Airport three years ago and found him to be absolutely delightful. Hopefully one the fantastic properties he has created for his own firm will be showcased in a forthcoming book I am writing. » Read more