Spice Magazine Redefining Lifestyle Kid's Luxury: Opulence Comes in Smaller Sizes As Children Flex Their Muscle in a Deluxe World
Think Angelina and Zahara with matching designer handbags; dismiss it as the Brangelina brand of eccentricity and venture winking at the modern-day version of the oldest human impulse--to behold an untrammeled frontier. If you can't fit cookie baking into your already jam-packed schedule, its defensible.
But as an up-to-the-minute urbanite, if you still dress up your kid in top-to-toe pink or a character associated with big corporations, like Barney or any Disney character, you ignore the call of natural evolution. With almost all high end items showing up in miniature sizes, it's time to treat the little princes and divas like their adult counterparts.
Uber cool styles are cutting-edge and hip: mix nursery rhymes, rock tees and hot colours. As pint-sized versions of adult tastes overwhelm Little Miss Muffet, the hit tour belts out Crib Rock Couture. There are even lullaby cover versions of songs by rock legends such as Coldplay, Pink Floyd, the Beatles, Led Zeppelin and Bob Marley.
Truly, the cup runneth over, as doting mommies and rich daddies dig deeper into their pockets to ensure that theirs are the best dressed kids on the block. It's the same story on the boardwalk too, as children race around in their own Audis and Porsches.They may not be old enough to tie their Burberry booties or Prada ponchos, but drinking milk from Dior bottles is du jour. The lap of luxury swells to make choices more democratic; if Paul Simons chart buster, Diamonds on the soles of her shoes, crafted poetic license for foot fetish, Kickbars offer of a shoe with diamond studded laces for little boys, (starting at $7500) makes good on the promise.
When its a moms day out, its babys day out too. As spa visits become less luxury and more health-care staple, children follow the example of their spa embracing parents.
At the Great Wolf Resorts Scooops Kid Spa, the little ones are spoilt for choice: Interiors that resemble an ice cream parlour and ME Baths ice cream-themed products, such as ice cream bath fizz, shower sherbet scrub, sundae topping foot mask and moisturising body icing.
Be it books, toys, birthday celebrations or just everyday life--big is in for the Little Ones. As the lure of luxe spreads with the speed of a Ferrari or a Lamborghini; the ratio of expenditure on childrens luxuries to the number of millionaire parents around the globe is fast balancing out.
A new league is in the making--children who are all under 15 are the new consumers of the uber luxe, accustomed to fine food, designer labels and top travel destinations. It's not about following trends, but making choices: A designer room, look alike dolls, tech toys, haute couture labels to wear, BMW, Ferrari, Porsche or Audi to ride and the best pre schools, is par for the course.
It's not just celeb parents like the Beckhams, who recently splashed out a whopping $50,000 (Rs 19.8 lakh) on a treehouse for her sons, but many others are enjoying this new found celeb status: Indulgent parents proud to pay. Some of the rocking trends for 2008 include birthday parties for friends at a kiddie spa--for manicures and chocolate pedicures--before the evening party.
Along similar lines is 'The Fashion Design Party' that FAO Schwarz arranges to pamper the little glam doll and and her gang. During this custommade Manhattan party, your lil ones will rule the ramp in real designer creations at an affordable $25,000 (Rs 10 lakh) price tag.
As the rage catches on--from entertainment to fashion to hospitality and education--children are the new V.I.Ks (Very Important Kids) and the little patrons like to do it their way--big, lavish, luxuriant, flamboyant and extravagant. Luxury properties are offering activities, amenities and menus designed for children; they have special childrens' areas, cocktail menus, workout classes and more.
For more racy entertainment, the Ritz-Carlton Hotel, Wolfsburg, offers the Autostadt theme park: Children can get a drivers licence at age of three, and get behind the wheel of a special miniature Volkswagen. And then there are the special breed of pampered campers. Wondering who they are? They are the young adrenaline junkies; the high flying, adventurous types.
And parents are willing to empty the barrel to pay to jet them off in style, to summer camps. Revolution Air, a charter company, customises trips to suit your requirements. In case the little geniuses have a more cerebral bent, then great literature too, is top drawer, as reading comes at a premium as well.
A copy of the first edition of J.K. Rowlings novel, Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone published in 1997 and signed Joanne Rowling, was sold to an anonymous bidder for $40,326 (Rs 15.9 lakh) at Christies, London. Another rare copy of J.K. Rowlings hand written fairy tale, The Tales of Beedle the Bard, fetched a hammer price of $4 million (Rs15.8 crore) when auctioned at Sothebys on December13th last year.
While the bidder remained anonymous, one can only estimate the value of the investment for a young reader, if it wasnt a career collector, of course. And for those tender giving hearts that want to give something back, exclusively to their moms, Judith Leiber promises to replicate strokes of their art work on a bagarm candy for proud moms to tote. It may not be French retro or modern Italian, but its Mammas boy!