Chopard

Robb Report’s 2022 California Coastal Rally Takes Camaraderie to Redline

Robb Report’s 2022 California Coastal Rally Takes Camaraderie to Redline

Mention “road rally” to most people, and visions of race cars running a multi-day gauntlet of endurance and skill tests across inhospitable terrain are what immediately come to mind. So too, the wind-beaten, dirt-infused faces of competitors offering only 1,000-yard stares by the final stages of contests with names like Mille Miglia, Carrera Panamericana and Dakar. Yet a growing number of rallies have shifted from the high-risk, high-reward concept to focus solely on the latter, driven purely by joie de vivre. Case in point is the 2022 Robb Report California Coastal, which crossed the finish line yesterday.

From June 12 through 16, over 20 participants teamed up as pilots and navigators in an automotive field represented by the likes of Ferrari, McLaren, Porsche and Bentley, to explore what’s arguably the Golden State’s greatest motoring pilgrimage—the route from Santa Barbara to Napa. Connecting the nation’s two preeminent wine regions is Highway 1, a paved ribbon etched along steep cliffs that jut from a chameleon-like sea.

A portion of the diverse automotive field prepped for action. 

Stewart Cook

For Los Angeles–based entrant Nancy Gale, behind the wheel of a Mercedes-AMG GT, “the roads never get old no matter how many times you’re on them, around every corner is something breathtaking.” Equally smitten was her copilot Michael Zander, who called the remote sections “magical.” Conjuring up the 514-mile course were the drive specialists at Radius, including co-founders Don Harple and Laszlo Nagy with nearly a half-century in motorsport and related consulting and support services between them. “First and foremost, we look for visually pleasing routes paired with roads that promote driving enthusiasm,” says Harple, who adds that the greatest challenge is keeping everyone on the same flow. “It is much more enjoyable to spend time on the road together as much as possible,” he says, “that’s where the stories and camaraderie are built as a group.”

Almost ready to roll out. 

Stewart Cook

On Sunday, a concours-style display of participating machines and an opening night cocktail reception were followed by a paired dinner featuring estate wines from Cuvaison. The kickoff to Robb Report’s second annual rally was hosted at the Ritz-Carlton Bacara, Santa Barbara—basecamp for the first night.

Neil and Bridie Hudspith set off from the Ritz-Carlton Bacara, Santa Barbara in their McLaren 720S Spider. 

Stewart Cook

A 9 a.m. start the next morning began a supercar convoy bound for San Luis Obispo to discover a presentation of truly unbridled power and performance that only the Return to Freedom Wild Horse Sanctuary could provide. The preserve, set on over 2,000 acres of pristine backcountry, is home to 400 untamed equine inhabitants.

“As a child, my first word was horse, so you can imagine the impact seeing wild horses being chased and captured on television as a five-year-old,” says Neda DeMayo, founder and president of Return to Freedom. “Decades later, when it was exposed that thousands were being slipped into the slaughter pipeline, I started this solutions-focused conservation organization to protect the diversity and habitat of America’s wild mustangs and burros.”

The unbridled power of the American wild mustang on full display at the Return to Freedom preserve. 

Viju Mathew

Taking off-road vehicles up an amber ridge, guests were soon walking amidst various herds of roaming mustangs that were relocated from several western states. Safe from the threat of inhumane captivity or elimination, the horses are even reunited with their original family groups when possible. It was an experience that resonated with rally participants Mike and Mickala Sisk, who are in the process of rescuing rhinos from various countries where poaching has decimated their numbers. The plan is to breed the endangered species on their ranch in Texas before eventually bringing them to Africa. Referring to the team at Return to Freedom, Mike could relate to the “incredible passion of the people involved.”
Perhaps the road trip’s greatest juxtaposition was presented later that afternoon. As the rally traced the serpentine stretch to Big Sur and beyond, the rugged hills from earlier—speckled by oaks and jagged rock—gave way to the immaculately manicured fairways of Pebble Beach. Before bedding down for the night at the famed Inn at Spanish Bay, the group was further immersed in the resort’s refined Scottish take on golf as a bagpiper slowly strode from the dunes to the fire pits, the haunting serenade bidding a temporary farewell to the sun.

Commemorative rally jackets turbocharge any driver’s wardrobe. 

Stewart Cook

“Iconic” seemed the theme for the second drive day, as the assemblage of rolling art meandered through one of the most coveted neighborhoods in the country, known simply as 17-Mile Drive. After a group photo fronting the revered 250-year-old Lone Cypress (inspiration for the logo of Pebble Beach Resorts), it was a direct jaunt to WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca (opening image), a motorsport mainstay since 1957.

Having dined with the rally crew the previous evening, track president John Narigi made the executive decision to bump up the parade-lap speed limit, allowing the procession to enjoy slightly more spirited driving for a couple of passes around the 2.23-mile circuit and its 180 feet of elevation change, including the infamous “corkscrew” sequence of steeply descending twists.
“It’s always a delight to see how people react when they drive the racetrack for the first time, knowing they are driving where legends have,” says Barry Toepke, director of Heritage Events at Laguna Seca. “While the track and Laguna Seca Recreation Area have changed over the years, there’s still the same spirit as when they first opened.”

No tour of 17-Mile Drive is complete without a photo at the Lone Cypress overlook. 

Don Harple

The time spent there may have proved costly for Mike Sisk. “I knew this was the day to judge the Ferrari Roma, and it handled everything beautifully” he says, having rented the Prancing Horse specifically for the rally before making a decision to purchase it. He did just that the next day with the help of fellow rally entrant Michael Famiglietti of Penske Automotive Group.
Other event sponsors on hand were Chopard, Cohiba, VistaJet, McLaren and Italian fashion house Isaia, the latter providing a reception of canapés and libations at its Frank Lloyd Wright–designed boutique in downtown San Francisco. There, Pixar’s creative director Jay Ward, a new addition to Robb Report’s RR1 membership club, joined former mayor Willie Brown in the exclusive mixer before attendees embarked on the short walk back to the baronial Ritz-Carlton, San Francisco for the night.

Canapés and cocktails at Italian fashion house Isaia’s boutique in downtown San Francisco. 

Darin Greenblatt

The most spectacular motoring was reserved for the final legs on Wednesday, where the caravan ascended to Hawk Hill for a unique bird’s-eye perspective on the city, then ventured along the often overlooked but unforgettable byways leading to Point Reyes and Tomales Bay. The 112-mile section culminated at the final destination, the Carneros Resort & Spa in Napa, where a McLaren rep was there to showcase the marque’s new 671 hp Artura hybrid coupe.

After the closing al fresco dinner, Chopard’s Mathieu Meunier sat by the fire and sipped a glass of Quantum Bin 98, a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon from Napa and South Australia crafted by Penfolds, the wine partner du jour. Asked how this rally differed from numerous others he has been involved with, Meunier took a beat to respond. “At many of the classic rallies, participants are only interested in the cars,” he eventually states. This group is more balanced, it cares about the finer things in general.”

The McLaren Artura gets a moment to shine at the Carneros Resort and Spa. 

Viju Mathew

In an unexpected show of appreciation, Meunier had just gifted one of Chopard’s limited-edition Mille Miglia timepieces to club member Neil Hudspith. “I have received awards over the years for the companies I represented, but this was the first time I had a microphone in my hand and was at a loss for words,” said Hudspith after the surprise.
At the goodbye brunch on Thursday, the Hudspiths sit with Nancy Gale and Michael Vander. Despite having just met a few days prior, the couples appear to be close friends and already have plans to visit each other. “You may forget some of the roads, but the people you’ll remember,” says Vander. When asked what message they have for newbies who may consider joining next year’s edition, Hudspith responds faster than his McLaren 720S: “Don’t think about it, just get it on the calendar.”

Exclusive: Julia Roberts Discusses Her Upcoming Rom-Com, a Role Close to Her Heart, and More

Exclusive: Julia Roberts Discusses Her Upcoming Rom-Com, a Role Close to Her Heart, and More

Academy Award-winning actress Julia Roberts arrived at the Cannes Film Festival to discuss a meaningful new role close to her happy heart.
Julia Roberts in Chopard at the Cannes Film Festival 2022. Photo: Giulia Parmigiani
“I never thought I would have a new godmother at 32 years old, let alone that godmother be Julia Roberts. It’s all a bit surreal,” remarked British actor Jack Lowden to a delighted black-tie crowd at the Carlton Hotel. Both Lowden and fellow laureate, Ugandan-British actress Sheila Atim appeared to fully grasp the gravitas of the evening — a Chopard gala during the 75th Cannes Film Festival to honor their acting skills. Roberts, effortlessly elegant in a couture Dior bar suit and skirt with hair pulled back in a clean bun had been called up to the stage moments earlier to present the actors with their respective awards — the Trophée Chopard. Twenty-one years in the making, the trophy honors up and coming actors with “godmothers” of the likes of Helen Mirren, Charlize Theron, Cate Blanchett, and Jessica Chastain bestowing the winners with their prize. Chopard has now supported the film festival for 25 years; since its artistic director and copresident Caroline Scheufele redesigned the Palme d’Or — the festival’s highest prize awarded to a film on closing night. On this evening, the air was electric, with Roberts engaging guests with her megawatt smile, inspiring everyone to stand a bit taller, laugh a bit heartier, and stay a bit later. There was no mistaking that there’s “something about Julia.”
Julia Roberts with Caroline Scheufele on the red carpet of the Cannes Film Festival 2022
“I was a wreck last night, I was an absolute wreck,” insists Roberts, taking a sip of her espresso on the Chopard privatized rooftop of the Hotel Martinez the following day. She is sitting on a couch before a table laden with fruit and juices. It overlooks the sea, peppered with yachts. Overhead, helicopters appear like gargantuan flies charting people from Cannes to Monaco. Her signature wavy hair is loose and voluminous. Once more, she’s dressed void of chichi in an all-black pantsuit and flat brogues — not that her business outfit could cloak one iota of her star power. “When we first got out of the car, we were all standing at the beginning of this endless path that we had to take,” continues Roberts. “I turned to Jack and said, ‘Oh my god, my heart’s beating a hundred miles a minute, how about you?’” she says, chuckling at the memory. “Even at the dinner, I’m nervous because I want — particularly Jack and Sheila — them to feel my admiration and I want to be able to express the true feelings that I have,” she says, adding that even her face was flushed. Roberts admits that she gets nervous before any such situation. “That’s part of it,” she admits. “That excitement is still so terrifying but thrilling. I don’t think you should be blasé on the red carpet at the Cannes Film Festival.”
Roberts is unafraid to show her innate vulnerability; a stalwart trait that has become a signature of her work in films like Steel Magnolias, Sleeping with the Enemy, Hook, Notting Hill, and Erin Brockovich, to name but a few. “Vulnerability is the superpower to observe vulnerability, understand it, portray it,” says Roberts. “It’s this special thing and everybody feels it in a unique way; and different things make all of us feel vulnerable. It’s this funny, little, special snowflake that we each have that’s different.” Roberts’s vulnerability is the kind that draws in crowds by the millions, making her one of the most bankable stars (male or female) of recent times. She earned an unprecedented $25 million for her role in Mona Lisa Smile (2003) and signed a reported five-year contract with Lancôme for $50 million. Collectively, her films have earned in the billions at the box office.
Julia Roberts as Elizabeth Gilbert in Eat Pray Love
There are some 20 people silently milling around Roberts at the time of this interview. However, she still manages to give the impression of leading a down-to-earth life with her husband-of-20-years Danny Moder and their three children. She’s known to support charitable organizations like UNICEF and Conservation International. Her commitment to the Chopard Trophy is a further act of community. If power in cinema has been hotly debated over the past few years with the Me Too movement, Roberts considers power to be rooted in service to others. “Even at my age, I’m open to any source of encouragement,” remarks the actress who is 54 and whose career spans over 30 years. “We all sort of get fatigued, or we question ourselves,” she states. “So, it’s times like this when we can encourage one another and help people feel valued in what they’re doing and the choices they are making. At events, you meet people in passing, and you don’t get to share time in a unique way anymore. They’re both [Lowdon andAtim] such great people and I’ve really enjoyed getting to know them. It’s been a quick trip but meaningful.” An assistant appears with Roberts’s lavender-hued sunglasses. The actress acknowledges her with a gentle, “Thank you, my love,” before finishing her evening recap. When Roberts did arrive on stage, rows of eager guests lifted their hands in the air, all clutching a phone to capture one of the greatest living actresses. Firmly, Roberts asked them to take their pictures, and then please put their phones away. “I understand it,” comments the actress. “I think that’s the thing — when you’re in a movie theater, you’re not on your phone, you’re not talking, you’re having this shared focus on one thing and that’s what makes it so special and that’s why we all love it and go back to it again and again.”
Chopard diamond brooch
Cinema is a great love shared with Chopard’s Scheufele. “One of the things that I think is so great about Chopard — they don’t just make beautiful things, they are inspired by different things,” states Roberts, who began her collaboration with the maison a few years ago, when Scheufele asked her to star in Chopard’s Happy Diamonds jewelry campaign. “City Lights (1931, starring Charlie Chaplin) is one of Caroline’s favorite movies,” offers Roberts. “The Dior silhouette  of once upon a time — I felt so girly — was the perfect template to then wear this fantastic brooch.” The diamond rose brooch is a high jewelry nod to the one Chaplin wore in his movie. Meanwhile, to attend the earlier red-carpet screening of Armageddon Time, Roberts donned a black tailored jumpsuit and accessorized it with another Chopard jewel — one of its 75 Red Carpet Collection pieces presented at Cannes — a sparkling necklace made with ethical gold and featuring a yellow diamond weighing over 100 carats.
Roberts agrees that she has a certain chemistry with the family-owned Swiss high jewelry maison. She wasn’t always certain it would be the case. “You never know. I always say, everybody can be nice at lunch. Over time, you don’t know if that alchemy is going to hold or how it’s going to come together. The first time we made this film with Xavier [Canadian director Xavier Dolan] we entered the same room, started talking, and I was just like, ‘Where have you been all my life, this is going to be so fun.’” Roberts snaps her fingers for emphasis. “We proceeded to work for 12 hours, going full speed, happy as clams — all of us.” She recalls the mood on set, with the entire crew dancing and having a good time. “If Caroline is the mother and we are the kids — she just let us run wild and create something for her that we thought was magnificent.” Trust, the actress expresses, is integral to the collaborative creative process. “When I’m on a movie with a director, that’s how I do the best work, if I feel like he trusts me and then guides me. They were two of the most fun days I’ve ever had shooting.” Weeks later, the world went into lockdown. Later in the year, Roberts received a behind-the-scenes video of the shoot. “I started crying,” she recalls. “Seeing everybody maskless, close together, huddled, people hugging. It had been so long, and it was so touching to see and remember how fun it was. That’s the kind of spirit that Chopard cultivates and that they want us to have.”
Julia Roberts as Vivian Ward in Pretty Woman
Roberts, who is currently enjoying praise for her role in the political thriller series Gaslit alongside Sean Penn, shows no signs of slowing. Her acting will soon inspire more laughter this fall. Ticket to Paradise (October 2022) is a movie about a divorced couple (played by Roberts and George Clooney) who travel to Bali for their daughter’s nuptials. Highly anticipated, it is the actress’s first romantic comedy in 20 years. Many will still remember the scene from one of her earliest rom coms, Pretty Woman, where, dressed in a red gown, she is presented with a jewelry box carrying a ruby and diamond necklace. If jewelry is traditionally associated with romance, should that still be the case today? “Oh, I hope so,” Roberts says, flashing her inimitable smile.
Originally published in the June 2022 issue of Vogue Arabia
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Rym Saidi Wore a Body-Hugging Gown by This Beyoncé-Loved Label in Cannes

Rym Saidi Wore a Body-Hugging Gown by This Beyoncé-Loved Label in Cannes

Photo: Patrick Sawaya. Courtesy of Instagram.com/rymsaidi
We all know that the Cannes Film Festival red carpet is not the only place where great fashion moments are spotted during the weeks the annual event takes place. As the buzzing event goes on, its adjacent galas and dinners also see remarkable looks, and one of them was recently served up by Rym Saidi.
Photo: Patrick Sawaya. Courtesy of Instagram.com/rymsaidi
The Tunisian model attended the Chopard Trophée Dinner in Cannes this weekend, ditching ball gowns and flared-out skirts for a form-fitting silhouette in a David Koma dress. In an evening-appropriate shade of slate navy blue, the dress, picked from David Koma’s Spring/Summer 2022 collection, featured the designer’s signature elements: an asymmetrical neckline bedazzled with diamantes. A black box clutch completed her outfit, while for jewelry, stylist Cedric Haddad looked to a matching, glittering wrist cuff and earrings. They were shown off by Saidi who wore her freshly cut hair gelled back and tucked behind her ears for a sleek look. Going for a ‘less is more’ approach, the former Vogue Arabia cover star’s glam for the evening included glowy bronzed skin, defined eyes, and a coral pink pout.
With Wissam Breidy. Photo: Patrick Sawaya. Courtesy of Instagram.com/rymsaidi
London-based designer David Koma’s bold and refined pieces have found a fan in many A-list stars, including Beyoncé, who wore a custom look to this year’s Oscars.
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Exclusive: How Chopard Created a Palme d’Or Trophy Studded With 100 Diamonds for Cannes Film Festival 2022

Exclusive: How Chopard Created a Palme d’Or Trophy Studded With 100 Diamonds for Cannes Film Festival 2022

Photo: Courtesy Chopard
In honor of the the 75th edition of the Cannes Film Festival, which coincides with the 25th anniversary of Chopard’s partnership with the event, the Swiss jeweler has put together a stunning new trophy for the annual event. The celebratory piece will see the Palme d’or rendered in gold, featuring two diamond-studded leaves, placed atop a rose quartz base.
Photo: Courtesy of Chopard
While one of the leaves will be studded with 75 diamonds, signifying the festival’s jubilee, and the other will be embedded with 25 diamonds, to signify 25 years of a committed relationship between Chopard and Cannes Film Festival. An appreciation of two in one, The Fairmined-certified 18-carat yellow gold Palme will not be placed on the traditional rock crystal cushion, but instead on a base made of rose quartz which alludes to the Greek mythology symbol of love.
The love story between Cannes Film Festival and Chopard began in 1997, when artistic director and co-president of Chopard, Caroline Scheufele left carrying a Palme d’Or to be reinvented after a meeting with then Festival President Pierre Viot. This gesture of appreciation from the maison highlights the theme chosen to celebrate the theme “Chopard Loves Cinema.”
Photo: Courtesy of Chopard
The Palme has been long used to honor the anniversaries of Cannes Film Festival. For the 70th anniversary, the iconic motif was seen filled with diamonds, and back in 2014, it was made for the very first time using Fairmined-certified ethical gold, making it the world’s first and only ethical film trophy. The trophy also held significance that year when Julia Ducournau became the first female director to receive a Palmefor her feature film titled Titane.
Below, see how Chopard’s sparkling new Palme d’Or trophy came to be for the 75th Cannes Film Festival.
Photo: Courtesy Chopard
Photo: Courtesy Chopard
Fixing the wax Palme in the plaster mold. Photo: Courtesy Chopard
Pouring the Fairmined gold in the mold. Photo: Courtesy Chopard
The Palme after heating. Photo: Courtesy Chopard
Reworking the shape of the Palme. Photo: Courtesy Chopard
The result after rounds of flame and regular polishing. Photo: Courtesy Chopard
Setting the 100 diamonds into the Palme. Photo: Courtesy of Chopard
The final ressult, noe ready to be mounted onto a slab of rose quartz. Photo: Courtesy Chopard
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How Julia Roberts Plans to Bring Joy into Her Life This Year

How Julia Roberts Plans to Bring Joy into Her Life This Year

Julia Roberts for Chopard. Photo: Courtesy of Chopard
She has the most famous smile in the world, so when the word “happy” is mentioned, it’s only natural Julia Roberts would come to mind – and when heritage luxury brand Chopard wanted a dazzling face for its new Happy Sport campaign, her superstar wattage delivered. “It was my good fortune that Chopard came to me,” she says in an exclusive interview with Vogue Arabia. “There was an immediate synergy. As a longtime admirer, this has all been very exciting.”
The 53-year-old is her generation’s biggest female movie star – the first to be paid $20 million (for 2000’s Erin Brockovich, four years after Jim Carrey became the first male actor to command that fee), then the first to be paid $25 million (for 2003’s Mona Lisa Smile). In December 2000, Roberts was also the first actress to make The Hollywood Reporter’s Power 100 list of most influential women in show business (which usually only includes behind-the-scenes executives), ranking third. “I feel quite fortunate that I’ve made my life as an artist a career,” she shares. “My creative process brings me a lot of happiness and a great sense of fulfillment.”
Julia Roberts wears Chopard to the 69th annual Cannes Film Festival in 2016. Photo: Venturelli/WireImage
This creative process continues in the sparkling new campaign for Happy Sport, Chopard’s equally joyful seminal watch. Designed in 1993 by Chopard’s co-president and artistic director, Caroline Scheufele, the Happy Sport watch embodies joie de vivre and a free-spirited attitude; its dancing diamonds as liberated as the women who wear it. Scheufele wanted to create a versatile watch for the modern woman, a piece she could wear as effortlessly playing sports as doing business or going to dinner. The result was a boundary-pushing watch mingling steel and diamonds, with a comfortable pebble-link bracelet, and seven diamonds dancing whimsically across the white dial. For 2021, the Happy Sport watch has been reimagined in a comfortable 33mm diameter case, inspired by the “golden ratio,” with 11 new references: models entirely crafted from steel or ethical 18ct rose gold, as well as bi- material variations, all available on a leather strap or matching metal bracelet and framed by a polished or diamond-set bezel.
Another version, made of ethical 18ct white gold, is entirely set with diamonds on the case, bezel, crown, and bracelet. All of them beat to the rhythm of the Chopard Manufacture 09.01-C movement with automatic winding, and each dial is graced with the legendary dancing diamonds. “This watch is rather perfect,” Roberts says of the iconic Happy Sport. “The balance of everyday elegance and surprising whimsy of the free diamonds! I love it. The watch is, of course, extremely special in its craftsmanship. I feel the type of person to wear this watch appreciates the details but doesn’t spend time fussing over them.” Along with the Happy Sport watch models, the new campaign also includes a collection of Happy Diamonds and Happy Hearts jewelry under Chopard’s Happy Diamonds line.
Photo: Courtesy of Chopard
Happiness is indeed what Roberts exudes in the joyful campaign video, helmed by director and Cannes film festival darling Xavier Dolan. In it, she dances joyfully, a crisp white shirt and jeans offsetting the Happy Sport watch, her smile the only other accessory. “Working with Xavier was like getting a present! He has so much talent and energy,” enthuses Roberts. “It was the fastest I think I have ever connected with someone on how to make the shoot work.” For his part, the filmmaker raves about his star. “There’s no question that Julia represents, for me, that kind of modernity in a woman that we think is really sensual and beautiful. That’s definitely what strikes me most about Julia: her humanity.”
While part of her appeal is assuredly her warmth and openness, when she unleashes that adored smile – perhaps only rivaled in reverence by her auburn curls and ferocious talent – Roberts disarms all around her. Born in Smyrna, Georgia, in 1967, to playwright and actor parents who also ran an acting school, she soon succumbed to what her mother called “the family disease,” moving to New York to pursue the stage and screen.
Photo: Supplied
After having two words of dialogue in the forgettable Western Blood Red opposite her brother, Eric Roberts, she landed the role that made Hollywood sit up: as fun-loving waiter Kat in Mystic Pizza (1988). She followed that the next year with an Oscar-nominated turn in Steel Magnolias – but it was her magnetic performance in Pretty Woman (1990) that heralded her arrival as the Next Big Thing. “I am proud of the staying power of Pretty Woman and how much people still enjoy it,” she says fondly. Then came Erin Brockovich (2000), a Steven Soderbergh home run that unleashed her full power; her endless limbs barely contained in tiny skirts and laced-up vests, masking the steely determination, infectious energy, and compassion that makes her such a force of nature. She would pick up the best actress Oscar at the 2001 Academy Awards wearing vintage Valentino, cementing her Hollywood legacy.
Notably private, the actor spent lockdown with her family – cinematographer husband Daniel Moder, who she met on the set of The Mexican in 2000, and their kids, 17-year-old twins Hazel and Phinnaeus and 14-year-old Henry. With the Chopard Happy Sport watch embodying the joyful spirit the world so sorely needs after 2020, how does she plan to bring joy into her life this year? “Last year was a challenge globally and things are still difficult. Moving forward, I believe, the sense of family and community has been revitalized. Our deep gratitude for being free to gather and hug. That brings me such joy. This time of the pandemic has renewed my feelings that the world is a small place in a wonderful way and we all should appreciate this fact. We are all in this life together.”
Photo: Supplied
She would also like to spend more time reading books and less time watching the news, while returning to the small screen after her Golden Globe-nominated turn in the 2018 Amazon series Homecoming for the anthology series Gaslit, scheduled for release later this year. She’ll also be reuniting with her good friend and Ocean’s Eleven co-star George Clooney for Ticket to Paradise, a comedy out next year. She goes with her gut when choosing scripts, following her intuition. “I do not know how to fully explain it, but it is a feeling that has always guided me,” she shares. “I trust that feeling and have never questioned it. My sense of success is largely the same: to be able to take care of myself and be proud of my intentions.” Traveling, too, might be on the agenda this year, Covid permitting. Roberts hasn’t seen enough of the region, she says, but would love to spend time in the Middle East – especially Lebanon. “One of my closest girlfriends is Lebanese. I would love to go there with her on a trip,” she shares. It is mere speculation whether she is talking about Amal Clooney, wife of George…
Roberts only has to walk into frame to lift the spirits, but what makes her happy? “The sunrise,” she states simply. “Being a free-spirited woman means being comfortable in your convictions and sharing your convictions with those around you. Not all women have those liberties, and I am very grateful that I do.” Even though movies and the industry have changed irrevocably, a true star’s capacity to bring joy and luminosity will never fade. Adored by men and women in equal measure, exquisite yet endearing, Julia Roberts will always have our full attention.
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Originally published in the May 2021 issue of Vogue Arabia

All the Best Fashion from the 2021 Cannes Film Festival

All the Best Fashion from the 2021 Cannes Film Festival

The Cannes Film Festival is the world’s biggest red carpet. For 75 years, the event’s lineup of premieres and parties has enriched the film industry while providing style devotees with a seemingly endless array of standout fashion. Cannes’ dress code is famously strict and arguably passé, but it has ensured the festival’s position as the premier showcase for haute couture and decadent gemstones. Cannes is not casual. Unless you’re this year’s inimitably cool jury president, Spike Lee, you don’t get to walk the steps of the Palais des Festivals et des Congrès wearing sneakers.
In 2020 there were no premieres or parties due to the coronavirus pandemic and its travel bans, but this year the event comes roaring back. With a jury that includes chic international talent like French-Senegalese director Mati Diop, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Mélanie Laurent, and Tahar Rahim, the fashion was bound to be good, but guests were already exceeding expectations. From the moment Gyllenhaal walked into day on’’s first photocell in a sleek Hedi Slimane-designed black trousers and tube-top combo from Celine, things were off and running.
Opening night at the world premiere of Leo Carax’s Annette, there were impressive outfits as far as the eye could see. Jessica Chastain delivered gothic vibes in a corseted Christian Dior Haute Couture gown paired with nearly 200 carats worth of Chopard rubies, while Lou Doillon twirled in Gucci’s gold lamé. Step up the staircase, and you’d find Bella Hadid posing in vintage Jean Paul Gaultier haute couture, nearly stealing the show from the movie stars. Not to be outdone, Annette’s star Marion Cotillard dazzled in a silver, tea-length Chanel Haute Couture look with so much sparkle it gleamed once the paparazzi began to snap Cotillard’s picture. All in all, it was a thrilling return to form and proof that the red carpet magic lives on.
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Originally published on Vogue.com

Exclusive: Julia Roberts on What Makes Her Happy Instantly and Her Tips for Happiness

Exclusive: Julia Roberts on What Makes Her Happy Instantly and Her Tips for Happiness

Julia Roberts at the 2016 Cannes Film Festival. Photo: Getty
Julia Roberts making her Cannes Film Festival debut in 2016, barefoot, and wearing a gleaming Chopard necklace of white diamonds and an emerald drop pendant is a moment for the fashion history books. Now channeling the same joie de vivre, the Hollywood sweetheart is starring in a new campaign for Chopard‘s Happy Sport watches.

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The teaser for the campaign’s upcoming short film shows a “super happy” Roberts sitting in front of the camera, her signature smile on her face as she answers questions. “The sunrise,” the 53-year-old actor replies when asked what makes her happy instantly. As for her happiness tips? “Be kind to others,” she says.
Roberts, who is known to not endorse any labels apart from Lâncome, and has worn Chopard jewelry for her red carpet appearances, was chosen by the house’s co-president and artistic director, Caroline Scheufele, to be its “ambassadress” and the face of its Happy Sport campaign. Characterized by the free-spinning diamonds enclosed in the dial, the Happy Sport watches were created by Scheufele in 1993 and have since become popular joy-sparking accessories.
Scheufele’s love for cinema is not only evident in choosing an actor like the Pretty Woman star as the face of the campaign, but also in the concept of its short film. The soon-to-be-released film is directed by young filmmaker Xavier Dolan and styled by Elizabeth Stewart. In it, Roberts can be seen gracefully moving — almost as if embodying the “free-spiritedness” of the watch’s diamonds — to Upside Down by Paloma Faith. “There is something about looking at a watch that, every time you look at it, kind of jingle balls these sparkling diamonds — [it’s] pretty rad,” says Roberts of her Happy Sport watch. “It’s good stuff,” she adds.
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Chopard’s New Boutique in Saudi Arabia Will Make You Feel at Home with Fine Jewelry

Chopard’s New Boutique in Saudi Arabia Will Make You Feel at Home with Fine Jewelry

Photo: Courtesy of Chopard
Chopard has opened the doors to its new boutique in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia at Al Basateen Mall, in partnership with Attar United.  Designed by renowned French architect Thierry W. Despont, the boutique is adorned with opulent leathers, light-toned woods, and deep red velvet interiors. Ever wanted to peruse fine jewelry and luxury watches from the comfort of home? The boutique will allow you to do just that as its design aims to put clients at ease by recreating the ambiance of a private residence.
Megan Thee Stallion wears Chopard jewelry to the Grammy Awards. Photo: Courtesy of Chopard
Once inside, clients are invited to stroll around the boutique as they browse the celebrity-loved maison‘s creations. Chopard jewels recently stole the show at this year’s Grammy Awards when Megan Thee Stallion made an appearance in five pieces from the maison. The rapper topped the event’s best-dressed lists with help from a diamond necklace from Chopard’s Red Carpet collection, a diamond bracelet from the Green Carpet collection, another from the Haute Joaillerie collection, and a brilliant-cut diamond ring from the Magical Setting collection.
Photo: Courtesy of Chopard
Karl-Friedrich Scheufele, co-president of Chopard commented on the opening, “In line with the brand’s expansion strategy, we are pleased to open our first boutique in Jeddah in partnership with Attar United.” CEO of Attar United Company, Mohammed Saddik Attar said, “We are proud to launch this new and first Chopard boutique in Jeddah which promises to be the best luxury shopping destination, we welcome our guests to explore the best shopping experience and Chopard’ s finest jewelry and watches”.
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