Monthly Archives: January 2014

Rolex Opens Largest Singapore Store

If you’re an F1 driver weaving your way across the Singapore street circuit, you might notice (if you’re a watch geek and are comfortably in the lead) that one of the Rolex logos on track is quite out of place. Well, that isn’t one of the many logos that will decorate the track area. In fact, it is a symbol of Singapore newest and largest Rolex store – also one of the largest Rolex boutiques in the world. Make no mistake though, this isn’t just about size; this is about an experience we like to call Green Heaven.

Green of course is the color of Swiss watchmaker Rolex but don’t expect some sort of parody of St Patrick’s Day or something, with a serving of the Dropkick Murphy’s or Van Morrison. Rolex is resolutely Swiss so perhaps, when you drop in, you could suggest that the bar stock Swiss wines (seriously underrated) and raclette.

Opened by Singapore watch retailer Cortina Watch last week in a stunning ceremony (complete with green cocktails, a sumptuous cheese spread and a gigantic whole tuna!), this 513-sqm store at Marina Square has space to spare. Part of this space is dedicated to a permanent exhibit called the Rolex Exhibition, which showcases the passion, heritage and commitment to excellence that characterize Rolex. It has also has some of our favorite watches, including the Sky-Dweller and the new (for 2016) Air-King.

 

“The opening of the Rolex Exhibition marks another evolution in Singapore’s luxury watch retail landscape,” said Jeremy Lim, Chief Operating Officer of Cortina Watch. “We believe that the Rolex Exhibition will draw customers closer to the spirit of Rolex, as they gain a better understanding of the brand’s constant pursuit of excellence and innovation, and receive the world-class customer experience that Rolex is renowned for.”

There are three themes to the exhibition, The Rolex Way, The World of Rolex and Rolex and the deep, each of which shines a spotlight on something Rolex is famous for. Rolex and the deep, for example, celebrates the nautical exploits of the brand synonymous with the Submariner and Sea-Dweller, to say nothing of the Oyster. If this confuses you at all, you should definitely drop in at the store and get some knowledge.

The World of Rolex is perhaps what people know best about Rolex. This includes the opening paragraph of this story, meaning the involvement and association of Rolex with international sports like Formula One. From racing, polo and sailing to the world of the arts, Rolex keeps the time and sets the pace. This is the place to discover how the brand’s longstanding philanthropic efforts are making the world a better place.

The Rolex Way gets into the philosophy of watchmaking at Rolex, from the time of founder Hans Wilsdorf. This is our favorite part of the exhibition because it is both what we love best about Rolex and yet also what manufacture is most secretive about – Rolex watches don’t have exhibition casebacks so you can’t see the movement.

 

Review: Sea Eagle Sailing Yacht

Sea Eagle is the direct result of Royal Huisman’s long-term commitment to developing business opportunities in Southeast Asia. She is the second yacht, in a Limited Series* of three and her owner Dr. Yin, who is a prominent Taiwanese businessman and philanthropist, is an experienced offshore sailor.

The spacious main saloon

Dr Yin believes passionately that education is the driver of social progress and that we should give back to society by sharing what we know with others. This philosophy extends to his appreciation of sailing: “Sailing is a very special activity”, says Dr. Yin. “You can enjoy being relaxed on the sea or experience different scenery, you can be alone or witness things you’ve never seen before. It is the same as in life: it might not always be smooth sailing and there will be ups and downs. Nonetheless, as with life, it is very rewarding.”

The twin helm stations with a commanding view of the deck

Sea Eagle, a beautiful 43m (142ft) sloop was recently launched and will spend the summer cruising the Baltic states, exploring the jagged Fjords of Norway and enjoying Sweden’s myriad islands, before heading westward to the Caribbean. With her dark blue hull and “Chevy white” superstructure, the yacht is as stylish as she is performance driven. A high-aspect carbon fibre mast towers some 57m / 187ft above the water and carries upwind over 1,000 sq/m of standing sail. The fixed keel drawing 4.5m / 14.7ft and a displacement of around 200 tons will ensure a thrilling ride while under sail.

The master suite

Well-positioned sightlines from the twin helm stations offer a commanding view of the uncluttered deck and sail plan. Guests are accommodated in the adjoining cockpit; this keeps everyone socially connected whilst under sail or when the yacht is at anchor. A unique awning-covered ‘tea deck’ and dining area also provides the perfect place for outdoor dining or shaded seating whilst under sail. An added feature of Sea Eagle is the aft ‘beach’ deck. Two steps down from the main deck, the transom opens out to reveal a large swim platform and full-beam staircase where the ‘beach’ and platform transform into a water playground. A 5.2m / 17ft Castoldi jet tender can be deployed from the transom garage by way of a hydraulically lowered ramp, providing the ideal launch pad for a day of water skiing or diving.

The ‘tea-deck’ and dining areaEasy Living

Sea Eagle’s interior design is by Rhoades Young. Quietly grained French walnut sets the backdrop for white oak floors, upholstered wall panels and birchwood accents, making for a calming, low-key and sophisticated ambience. Forward of the awning-covered center cockpit with upholstered seating, the main cockpit and entrance to the main deckhouse saloon are shaded by the generous overhanging coach roof.

The fully equiped galley

Surrounded by large wrap-around windows and flooded with natural light, the spacious deckhouse features a cosy conversation zone and dining for a full complement of guests, as well as the interior helm position for navigation during inclement weather. From here, a staircase turns aft and leads below to two guest cabins and an expansive aft owner’s suite with private entrance to the stern ‘beach deck’.

Sunbathing area on the foredeck

Another staircase forward of the main deck saloon gives way to a lobby with three heavily insulated doorways: one leads to the day bathroom; one to the starboard side cabin, which can either be a gym or a VIP cabin; and the last to the crew area that includes the portside engine control room and ship’s office, allowing for convenient crew access to the engine room without intruding into the guest areas. A staircase from the crew quarters leads directly to the foredeck aft of the crew tender garage. Like all Royal Huisman yachts, close attention was paid to noise reduction and vibration to be hushed to library-like levels, even when the engines and/or generators are in full operation.

Swim platform

Reinforcing his trust in the shipyard, Sea Eagle’s owner, Dr. Samuel Yin has offered his full support by making his yacht available for presentations at various worldwide yachting events, including in his home waters in South East Asia. Viewed by Royal Huisman as a huge honour, this opportunity allows the yard to demonstrate around the world what the brand represents: the pinnacle of Dutch quality and the clear distinction between ‘what looks good’ and ‘what seriously is good’ in superyacht building. The last of this 43m series awaits a discerning client who is looking to take advantage of a proven design that offers a shortened delivery time and amortized cost savings, whilst allowing a choice of interior and exterior arrangements to personalize the design to a very high level.

Sea Eagle Sailing

Following the distinctive performance of the Germán Frers-designed Unfurled and Hyperion [overall winner and second in class respectively at the 2016 St. Barths Bucket Regatta], Sea Eagle, also designed by Frers, has entered the 2017 edition of the St Barths Bucket, a leading superyacht regatta.

Specifications
Type ROYAL HUISMAN 43m

Naval architects Germán Frers

Interior design Rhoades Young

Length overall 43.31m / 142ft

Length waterline 37.91m / 124ft

Beam 8.98m / 29ft

Draft 4.50m / 15ft

Displacement 203 tons / 447,537lbs

The Tang Prize Foundation

Dr Samuel Yin, the owner of Sea Eagle, is also the founder of the Tang Prize. Named after China’s inspirational Tang Dynasty (618-907), The Tang Prize Foundation is a non-governmental, non-profit educational foundation that awards outstanding contributions in four fields, which aims “to encourage the world’s best and brightest to view in a new light the problems which face human civilization, and to dedicate themselves to bringing about positive change to the global community.”

With these goals in mind, Dr Yin founded the Tang Prize in 2012 through a multi-million dollar donation. It awarded its first year of prizes in 2014 in four major fields: Sustainable Development, Biopharmaceutical Science, Sinology (the study of China and its culture) and the Rule of Law.

Dr Yin (left) and Chi-Huey Wong (翁啟惠), former president of Academia Sinica

Individuals or institutions who are judged to have made original, influential contributions to their field receive a cash prize and grant to promote ongoing development in their field. At an approximate US$1.56 million per category, the prize money exceeds that of the Nobel Prize. In the progressive spirit of philanthropy, Yin deliberately chose disciplines that complemented rather than eclipsed the famous Swedish awards.

Dr Yin studied history at Chinese Culture University in Taipei before receiving a Master’s degree in Business Administration at National Taiwan University and a doctorate in the same subject at National Chengchi University. He has supported various educational programmes for Chinese students and, in the early 1990s, set up the Guanghua School of Management at Peking University in Beijing, where he is a professor. He is also an adjunct professor in the Department of Civil Engineering at National Taiwan University.

Alice Huisman and Dr Yim; the Tang Prize for Rule of Law

In addition to his academic achievements, Yin is an award-winning civil engineer and educator. He is currently chairman of Taiwan’s Ruentex Group, which has invested heavily in China, and chief development officer, chief technology officer and chief engineer of Ruentex Construction & Development.