x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 July 2017

VIP lounge

The Flash VIP Lounge is back for its second year at at Yas Island's Ferrari World alongside the Formula 1. Alfa Romeo teams up with Ethical Muse, Miriam Quevedo branches out into skincare and Kanztee offers local artists their own T-shirts.

The luxury Italian car manufacturer Alfa Romeo has teamed up with the UAE-based company Ethical Muse to offer a reusable bag made of upcycled tyres and coffee rucksacks made out of jute, the fibre originating from tropical plants. Courtesy Ethical Muse
The luxury Italian car manufacturer Alfa Romeo has teamed up with the UAE-based company Ethical Muse to offer a reusable bag made of upcycled tyres and coffee rucksacks made out of jute, the fibre originating from tropical plants. Courtesy Ethical Muse

After a successful first year, the Flash VIP Lounge is back this weekend at Yas Island’s Ferrari World, attempting to lure celebrities who are in the capital for the F1, including Kate Hudson, her Muse hubby Matt Bellamy, Jay Z, the members of Depeche Mode, the Lebanese singer Elissa and others, with promises of new products, luxe extras and quirky brands. We look at some of the goodies on offer

Alfa Romeo x Ethical Muse

The luxury Italian car manufacturer Alfa Romeo has teamed up with the UAE-based company Ethical Muse. Cathy Leibman and Christina Decker, the founders of Ethical Muse, began the company in 2011 as a for-profit venture. Their accessories are made from upcycled, recycled and sustainable materials and are produced by artisans in developing countries. This year, celebrities visiting the VIP lounges will receive a reusable bag made of upcycled tyres and coffee rucksacks made out of jute – the fibre originating from tropical plants.

Miriam Quevedo skincare

Beauty fanatics will recognise the name Miriam Quevedo for her ultra luxurious haircare products. The label has now entered the world of skincare with the official launch of the new line at the Flash VIP Lounge. Miriam Quevedo’s renowned Glacial White Caviar Haircare line led to a Glacial White Caviar Skincare collection. The products include white caviar, peptide and pure glacial water. They’re also pumped with antioxidants, which improves the overall health and quality of the skin. The range’s products offer a moist yet light feel and are fully absorbed by the skin, resulting in a healthy, fresh glow.

Kanztee

Another regional and eco-friendly range of products comes courtesy of Kanztee, an online portal where artists can submit and sell their designs. The limited-edition pieces are made of 100 per cent sustainably grown cotton, each handprinted with catchy slogans, quirky designs and regional themes. In addition, they’re recyclable and biodegradable. Kanztee focuses heavily on the sarcastic but humorous side of life, sometimes with an Arab twist. Recent offerings included Darth Vader in a ghutra and a drawing of the Breaking Bad drug kingpin character Walter White paired with his catchphrase “tread lightly”.

Tavalon Tea

The New York-based tea specialist, Tavalon Tea, is launching for the first time in the region at the Flash VIP Lounge. The brand, which is served at The Plaza Hotel in New York City as well as Dubai’s very own Supper Club, has a celebrity following including stars such as Kate Hudson and Susan Sarandon. Chris Cason, Tavalon’s tea sommelier and one of the co-founders, grew up around tea in South Carolina, one of the few states in the US with climates suitable for growing tea. Cason then moved to New York City and worked out his goal. “Americans thought that Lipton is the only tea there. I wanted to show them that there are a lot of different kinds of tea out there,” he says.

After travelling around the world and writing his first book about tea, A Guide to Tea, Cason ended up in Las Vegas for the World Tea Expo, where he met his company’s co-founder John-Paul Lee. “We wanted to find a way to make tea universally accepted in the US,” says Cason. “We had to make it young, fresh and interesting by coming up with new blends of gourmet tea to suit the American palate.”

Cason says that with the beverage fluctuating between being the fifth to sixth most-consumed beverage in the US, “I don’t think tea has hit its Venus yet”.

“There’s a good tea craze going around but nowhere near as big as it could be.”

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