Category Archives: Architecture

After a year of patiently waiting, my UK publisher finally sent me the first draft of my ‘Independent Watchmakers’ book. The project was immensely rewarding for many, many reasons. Not only did I get to feature most of my favourite watchmakers but I also got include my own timepiece called the ‘Pure Carbon’. This piece took me over two years to manufacturer (with the assistance of several collaborators) because every single component is bespoke. It also is the world’s largest Swiss mechanical watch measuring a whopping 67mm (excluding the crown). Another bonus is I discovered (literally days before my deadline) a visionary watch designer called Franck Dubarry and was able to promote his fantastic ‘Crazy Wheel’. » Read more

A few weeks ago my editor informed that a book I had written about Australian Architects is scheduled to be published later this year. Even though the title has changed to ‘Australia Modern’ I am really excited by the end product. As an added bonus Professor Phil Harris (Troppo Architects) agreed to write the foreword. Essentially he explains in an eloquent manner the relationship the 15 shortlisted houses have to this diverse geographic region. As you would expect some of my original selections were omitted. However, I am delighted that renowned Adelaide architect Max Pritchard made the grade. » Read more

Over the last few years, I have become more passionate about stylish cars. Ultimately my increased interest has heightened, mainly because my son Paolo is absolutely fanatical about the subject. In fact, he helped me choose most of the selections in my ‘Luxury Design for Living’ book. However, the Vision Mercedes-Maybach 6 Cabriolet (in my opinion) takes vehicle design to a completely different level. Parallels can be made within another creative powerhouse called Paolo Mastrogiuseppe who creates the most astonishing coffee machines under the brand name Super Veloce. A great example can be found in their phenomenal automotive inspired Espresso Veloce Flat Six.
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Before I relocated to Australia (2012) I resided in Manchester, England for over 20-years. This vibrant city (dubbed the capital of the North) experienced an enormous amount of regeneration. My personal favourite suburb was Chorlton, which became a real property hotspot. This happened because there were several chic bars, restaurants and independent clothing boutiques. Most of the local architecture was late Victorian/Edwardian terrace homes. These dwellings were originally built for blue collar workers and therefore the footprint was exceptionally narrow. However, with the assistance of a progressive architect and a bit of lateral thinking, the results could be outstanding. » Read more

About 20 years ago I bought my first house in the UK and I became very interested in the property industry in general. This stimulated me to renovate quite a few historical properties, which subsequently were featured in renowned interior design magazines. One of these residences (that I still own) is a penthouse in an old textile mill dating back to 1870. The apartment has many fantastic original architectural features like exposed trusses, brick walls and vaulted ceilings. I fitted a bespoke freestanding solid wood kitchen, contemporary designer radiators, cast iron spiral staircase (leading to a galleried mezzanine area) and reclaimed Victorian wooden panel doors. In total I probably only lived in this dwelling for five years but have certainly got fond memories. That is why I was really enticed by North Adelaide Barn by Williams Burton Leopardi because of the similarities. » Read more

A few years ago I visited Perth with my family and was really impressed with the overall experience. Even though this region is in a completely different time zone compared to rest of Australia and is fairly remote it has a distinct air of opulence. Ultimately this is due to the mining boom, which has attracted a lot of investment in Western Australia. Essentially this has pushed the cost of living and house prices up to near the level of Sydney. It has also meant that architects are not restricted by tight client budgets and can create supreme properties without compromise. A great example can be found in the ultra extravagant Trigg Residence. » Read more

Before I relocated to Australia (2012) I resided in Manchester, England for over 20-years. This vibrant city (dubbed the capital of the North) experienced an enormous amount of regeneration. My personal favourite suburb was Chorlton, which became a real property hotspot. This happened because there were several chic bars, restaurants and independent clothing boutiques. Most of the local architecture was late Victorian/Edwardian terrace homes. These dwellings were originally built for blue collar workers and therefore the footprint was exceptionally narrow. However, with the assistance of a progressive architect and a bit of lateral thinking, the results could be outstanding. » Read more

A few nights ago I went to a very posh soirée to celebrate a good friend’s 45th birthday. The event was absolutely fantastic and the guests were treated like royalty. Highlights included professional catering, live music and the host even treated us to a beautiful Debussy recital on the grand piano. I was fortunate enough to spend the evening in the company of a retired Ear, Nose and Throat surgeon. He is a pretty youthful 60-year old who has just designed and project managed a large scale residential project. Even though we like different styles of buildings I am sure he would appreciate the aesthetic of Villa Vingt. » Read more