The 2020 Big Upgrade: A Gift Guide for Those In Pursuit of Better
When it comes to gifting, we’ve always believed that the search for quality should supersede the desire for quantity. This year in particular has shown us just how much expertise should be celebrated, how important craftsmanship is, and that we all deserve to experience excellence. From the latest tech releases to quality capsules sure to revitalize a winter wardrobe, find the perfect gift or a well-earned treat for yourself in this season’s gift guide—no matter the time of the year.
Hennessy X.O x Frank Gehry
As winter closes in, our minds wander towards the thought of warming up beside the fire, a glass of smooth cognac in hand. Hennessy has collaborated with iconic Canadian architect Frank Gehry to develop a bottle worthy of even the most refined tastes. Made to commemorate the 150th anniversary of Hennessy X.O, this bottle might warrant its own trophy case. Filled with the very liquor that first defined the cognac industry, each limited-run bottle is a decanter stamped with Gehry’s own signature, encased in a sleeve of 24-carat gold-dipped bronze. If that seems a bit extravagant, Hennessy also sells a less ornate but still artful bottle for a more accessible $230.
Louis Vuitton Vivienne Music Box
Made in the shape of a miniaturized Louis Vuitton trunk, the French fashion house has released a Vivienne music box in what is perhaps the most elegant and poetic gift of the season. The perfect statement piece for the home of a loved one, this mini-trunk in iconic Monogram canvas opens to reveal Louis Vuitton’s charming Vivienne figurine delicately swaying to the music. Sparking a moment of joy each time the lid is lifted, this release is built with craftsmanship to be enjoyed for generations.
Hit the slopes in style this winter with Dior’s new ski collection, including a monogrammed snowboard sure to turn heads all season. Dior’s artistic director, Kim Jones, created the capsule with the same minimalist design and expertise that we’ve come to expect from the label, with the snowboard decorated tastefully in its own iconic blue and navy Dior Oblique monogram print. Jones worked with AK Skis to create the couture gear, a Swiss company that employed a sandwiched wood construction—much like official racing skis—so the gear could perform at the highest possible level.
New Works Rise and Shine Mirror
The Rise and Shine mirror by New Works redefines what a wall mirror should look like, offering an unfolding feature that acts as the focal point in any room. Hanging from an oak knob, the feature can be adjusted to a height that best fits your needs or—if creatively inspired—can be artistically balanced to create the perfect conversation piece. The mirror’s brass components and soft oak accents are a stunning visual while providing a centrepiece full of balance and movement, making it the perfect home décor gift this season.
Give the gift of luxury to the men in your life with CDLP’s Home Robe, crafted in Portugal and available in both a rich burgundy and a deep navy blue. Cut from 100 percent woven lyocell—the most sustainable cellulose fabric—this magnificent robe offers a relaxed fit featuring a satin piping accent, silky waist belt, one chest pocket, and two side pockets. In a time when most are asked to stay home, make every day a little more luxurious with the silk-like comfort of the Home Robe.
Chanel Mademoiselle J12 Acte II
Celebrate the season with a gift elegant enough to last a lifetime. Limited to just 40 pieces between two models—in both black and white resistant ceramic and 18K gold case—Mademoiselle and the J12 reunite to celebrate the 20th anniversary of a watchmaking icon. The result: the stunning Chanel Mademoiselle J12 Acte II. Fastened to the J12’s crown, Mademoiselle is revealed in the form of a stylized tassel, wearing a suit embroidered with 224 diamonds and white gold braiding.
Veuve Clicquot Tape Box
Even decades after being replaced by Sony’s Walkman and fading into cultural obscurity, the charming aesthetic of the plastic cassette tape still holds a place in the hearts of many. Once symbols of individuality and personal taste, champagne house Veuve Clicquot is tapping into the spirit of creative expression with its Retro, Chic! gift collection. Each box is modelled after a cassette, sporting one of six 80s-inspired face graphics, including animal prints, sunsets, and diamond facets. Boasting artisanal craftsmanship, the boxes are designed to be kept for a lifetime and can be personalized to create a gift as intimate as an old-school mixtape.
Nobis x Serge Ibaka Long Parka and Tactical Vest
When Nobis embarked on their partnership with basketball player Serge Ibaka, the ensuing capsule made waves throughout the Canadian fashion world. Now, the collection has arrived just in time to gift two of Nobis’ stunning pieces, their long parka and tactical vest. Built for mild winter days and transitional Canadian weather, the tactical vest is made from durable performance fabric and insulated with lightweight Primaloft padding, making it incredibly functional and ready to take on whatever life has to offer. The parka is perfect for when those temperatures drop. Armed with water repellent performance fabric and insulated with premium Canadian white duck down, this gender-neutral parka works both in combination with the tactical vest and independently to elevate any winter wardrobe with functional style.
Google Pixel 5
There is perhaps no piece of technology more prepared to organize your life than the Google Pixel 5. The phone’s calling card is that it simply streamlines whatever life throws your way with unparalleled technology. Whether it’s a brilliant Pixel camera that captures moments with stunning clarity or a water-resistant metal body and security chip to help ensure your data stays protected, the Pixel 5 is as reliable as it is stylish. Its user-friendly interface makes this the perfect gift for anyone on your list (including yourself.)
Transform any travel experience with Away’s latest luggage collection. The perfect gift for those hoping to inject some much-needed comfort to a hectic travel schedule (when we eventually travel again,) the Bigger Carry-On comes in six standard limited-edition colourways, from golden ombré to sage matte. Throughout the various models, collaborations from Rashida Jones and Serena Williams make each variation special. The durable polycarbonate hard shells, 360-degree spinner wheels, interior compression system, hidden laundry bag, and TSA-approved lock alleviate all the stress of travel without sacrificing style.
Dom Pérignon Luminous Vintage 2008
Exceptional champagne is one of the great symbols of celebration, so whether you’re looking to treat yourself or others to the height of festivity, look no further than the Dom Pérignon Luminous Vintage 2008. Dom Perignon—the pinnacle of Champagne house Moët & Chandon’s sparkling operations in Épernay, France—is a name synonymous with elegance, style, luxury, and timelessness. This particular bottle delivers the traditional minimalist, slender, pure, toned character of the Dom Pérignon, wrapped in the now-iconic luminous bottle designed by Dom Pérignon’s creative director, Lenny Kravitz, offering something entirely singular to your celebration.
Known for their pedigree in luggage craftsmanship, Rimowa has expanded its wares into its multi-use soft bag line—Rimowa Never Still—which offers an elegantly modern solution for daily urban commuting, travelling, and everything in between. Perfect for anyone looking to simply navigate everyday life, Rimowa’s legacy guarantees exquisite craftsmanship, distinctive design, and luxurious accents with the mobility of a contemporary backpack. Made in Italy from durable, water-repellent canvas and soft-touch full-grain leather, this unisex collection consists of a small, medium, and large-sized backpack, a tote, and an essential weekender bag.
Microsoft Surface Laptop 3
Last year, Microsoft granted us more choices than ever with its Surface products, but this sleek, stylish model is a stand-out release for anyone in the market this season, either as a gift or treating oneself to an upgrade. The Microsoft Surface Laptop 3 delivers a bright touchscreen, polished design, sturdy build, and excellent performance for everyday life with 11.5 hours of battery life. Anyone entering the new year with this companion by their side, boasting the perfect balance of style and speed, is sure to forget they ever loved another laptop.
Tiffany & Co. Elsa Peretti Bone Cuff
Renowned for her distinctive sculptural, minimalist aesthetic, visionary jewellery designer Elsa Peretti has partnered with Tiffany & Co. to produce some of this season’s most elegant and breathtaking pieces. From a stunning mesh scarf necklace in 18k gold to tassel earrings in sterling silver with freshwater pearls, Peretti’s work remains timeless, but her most interesting release came in the design of her bone cuff. The cuff’s asymmetry and contours are so ergonomic that they mould right to one’s body, making it and the rest of Peretti’s collection lifelong treasures.
Tonal is an at-home strength training machine that is as beautiful as it is functional. Using electromagnetism to create resistance, Tonal mounts to your wall for a personalized workout with over 200 exercises and on-demand coaching. In a year where most of us have relied on at-home systems and routines to maintain our fitness regimen, Tonal is there to make sure no one falls off the fitness wagon.