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Covering Philipstown, Cold Spring, Garrison and Putnam Valley in New York’s Hudson Highlands

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Boulevard Louison Bobet 56170 Quiberon
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Boulevard Louison Bobet 56170 Quiberon
Tel: +33 (0)2 97 50 20 00 Fax: +33 (0)2 97 30 45 52 E-mail: h0562-re@sofitel.com

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Located in South Brittany, set in wild yet beautiful natural surroundings, Sofitel Quiberon Thalassa and Sofitel Quiberon Dietetique offer seawater spa treatments and mouthwatering cuisine from masterful chefs. Be inspired by the rejuvenating atmosphere of this timeless destination, where people and nature live in harmony. Experience the authentic French art de vivre with the best of views.

Each Sofitel draws inspiration from local culture and tradition while celebrating innovation and the French art de vivre to offer a one-of-a-kind, luxurious hotel experience. From design details to exhibitions and events, discover what makes our hotel so unique.

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Rest in an atmosphere of elegance, pleasure and refinement in the bedrooms and suites of Sofitel Dietetique, havens of light and well-being. Each...

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Enjoy a magnifique a magical moment with your loved one at Sofitel Quiberon Thalassa sea spa! Book the "Magnifique Romance"...

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A cocooning experience, sooooo relaxing

We booked a Superior room with Ocean view and our view was indeed really excellent and contributed to the overall relaxing experience. As we arrived at the hotel, the concierge team sprang into...

We booked a Superior room with Ocean view and our view was indeed really excellent and contributed to the overall relaxing experience. As we arrived at the hotel, the concierge team sprang into...

Great location, very nice property

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A Double Bass, Tree Rings, and the Truth

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M odern science is full of surprising analytical techniques that can be used in a wide variety of remarkable circumstances.

M y favorite technique is Mehem thin band set of two stacking rings Unavailable hAw1gNjQvn
—the study of “tree time.” By assigning calendar-year dates to growth rings in trees, scientists can garner information relevant to an astonishing range of disciplines, including Angara South Sea Cultured Pearl Solitaire Ring with Diamond Vr0ihIXwx
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, and many others.

B elieve it or not, tree ring analysis has even been used to date wooden musical instruments like violins and cellos, and in at least one case, a double bass. The double bass is a member of the viol family and looks like a large cello, but it can produce sounds a full octave lower than a cello. Because of its size it is harder to play than its stringed-instrument cousins, so it is less commonly seen in orchestras and other musical ensembles. That is why it’s not as well-known to the general public.

J ust over a decade ago, dendrochronologists analyzed tree rings in the wood from which the world-famous Karr-Koussevitzky double bass was made. Their work forced a radical reinterpretation of the instrument’s history.

I n 1962, Russian-born philanthropist BCBGeneration Pave Stick Necklace uGevuVZu
attended a performance of the New York Philharmonic in which Gary Karr, a promising young double bassist, offered his New York debut recital. Koussevitzky’s late husband, who died more than 10 years earlier, was Serge Koussevitzky (1874–1951), conductor of the Boston Symphony Orchestra from 1924 to 1949 and arguably the most famous double bass player of all time.

M s. Koussevitzky claimed that during Karr’s performance she saw her husband’s ghost embrace the young man on stage. She was so moved by the experience that she decided to give her husband’s prized double bass to Karr, thus leading to the Karr-Koussevitzky name for the instrument.

U pon his retirement in 2004, Karr donated the double bass to the International Society of Bassists, and Yvonne Léon 18kt gold 3 diamonds ear jacket Metallic nHgpE
jumped into action to professionally evaluate the instrument for the first time. After analyzing stylistic and technological attributes, they suggested that the double bass dated to about 1800 and was probably from France. It was at this point that the tree ring experts got involved.

D endrochronologists Henri Grissino-Mayer and Georgina DeWeese, along with luthier Dustin Williams, conducted the analysis . They carefully secured the double bass to a movable platform so that they could safely measure the tree rings visible in the spruce wood used to make the instrument. Given its size—more than a meter long and 33 to 63 centimeters wide—this was not an easy task! They measured a total of 317 growth rings in two long, overlapping sequences in two of the many pieces of wood that make up the instrument. They then mathematically compared the measured ring-width data to known tree ring reference chronologies from across west-central Europe.

G rissino-Mayer and colleagues determined conclusively that the last growth ring present on the double bass grew in 1761. Based on their understanding of how spruce trees grow, and an estimate of the number of rings missing from the end of the sequence, they calculated that the tree from which the instrument’s wood was taken had been cut down between 1775 and 1790.

S tatistically, the ring-width pattern from the double bass is most similar to growth patterns in trees growing in the eastern Alps. The pattern’s strongest relationship is with tree ring chronologies developed near Obergergl in western Austria, just north of the Italian border, followed by Simmental in northern Austria and Berchtesgaden in extreme southeastern Germany.

F inally, Williams’ stylistic and technological analysis of the instrument—and the fact that it was downsized at one point in its history—led him to conclude that it was made by French luthiers, using wood imported from Austria.

P rior to the tree ring analysis, unconfirmed and unwritten histories of the double bass held that the world-famous Amati brothers made it in Cremona, Italy, in 1611. Antonio and Girolamo Amati were the most renowned instrument makers of their day, and they remain famous for the quality of their workmanship and the prestige associated with their pedigree. (Girolamo’s son Nicolò went on to train Antonio Stradivari, who created the famous Stradivarius violins.) It is therefore not surprising that previous owners of the Karr-Koussevitzky double bass would want to have the Amati brothers’ name associated with the instrument, for its appraised value would skyrocket.

D endrochronology demonstrates conclusively that the Amati brothers cannot possibly have crafted the instrument in 1611. Indeed, the best we can say is that some unknown luthier made it at least 165 years later. Circumstantial evidence supports this conclusion as well: If the Amati brothers made the instrument, it would be the only known double bass in their oeuvre, which otherwise includes 77 violins, 27 violas, and 12 cellos.

M useum curators, appraisers, and private collectors spend a lot of time and money conducting provenance research in an effort to generate life histories and chronologies for specific objects under their care. They do so for good reason: Reliable provenance can demonstrate authenticity and legality, and can affect the monetary value of rare objects.

W hen the tree ring analysis forced a revision to the Karr-Koussevitzky double bass’ history, it was likely disappointing to all parties concerned. The revised history doesn’t affect the quality of the instrument or the sound it produces, but it certainly impugns the prestige associated with the object.

I n the big picture, though, more was gained than lost. Science is about finding the truth, and truth is more important than money and prestige put together.

Serge Koussevitzky, one of the most renowned double bass players of all time, died in 1951, but his instrument was given to double bassist Gary Karr in 1962. After that it became known as the Karr-Koussevitzky double bass.

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When it comes to market-leading innovation, groundbreaking invention and out-and-out 'Oh my God I want one', Jaeger-LeCoultre and Breguet are among the best of the very best watchmakers in the world. These centuries-old timepiece tinkerers have contributed more to watchmaking than pretty much anyone else out there, moving technology forward in leaps and bounds, even today. The question that remains seems simple, but it'll take a whole lot of thinking to find the answer: which watchmaker is best? We take two contemporary masterpieces from each brand and pit them head to head to see which comes out on top.

Abraham-Louis Breguet, inventor of the tourbillon, developed the pioneering technology to negate the effects of gravity on the balance wheel by continuously rotating the whole thing. The watchmaker has had a bit of practice since 1801, so it goes without saying that it's good at it, but what about Jaeger-LeCoultre? How does its offering stack up against the masters?

The headline figure is the price. Utilising stainless steel for the case instead of precious metals, Jaeger-LeCoultre has accomplished something of a luxury bargain—a tourbillon for around £40,000. This isn't any cut-price Friday special either, because the same fantastic workmanship that Jaeger-LeCoultre uses in its range-topping Gyrotourbillon is present here in spades. Neat touches abound, such as the date hand, which jumps across the aperture in the dial so as not to obscure the tourbillon. Also, this tourbillon isn't manual wind, it's automatic, making it a sensible day-to-day proposition. But doesn't the rotor weight obscure the tourbillon assembly when viewed through the sapphire case back? The answer is no, because Jaeger-LeCoultre has cleverly cut a viewing hole in it.

The tourbillon—meaning ‘whirlwind'—is a complication that spreads the force of gravity evenly over the balance wheel. It was originally designed for use in pocket watches, which spend most of the time hanging in the vertical position. The benefit in a wristwatch, which is generally more mobile, is minimal.

With the age of the mechanical watch now passed, the necessity to develop impressive and useful complications is more an opportunity to demonstrate technical ability than anything else. In a way, that opens to floodgates for some truly revolutionary thinking, as Breguet's Tradition 7047 demonstrates. In reality, the fusee and chain—the mechanism used here to keep a constant application of torque applied to the balance wheel—is no new idea, but the incredibly compact design takes the concept to a whole new extreme.

With links that are less than a millimetre thick, the chain in the Tradition 7047 is clearly the centrepiece, and that's an impressive feat when there's a tourbillon with a silicon balance spring and titanium balance wheel on show as well. The watch even has a power reserve indicator cleverly integrated into the mainspring barrel, and although all this wizardry doesn't leave any room for an auto-winding module, it's surprisingly svelte. Then again, this is no daily wearer, it's an art piece; the traditionally hand-guilloched dial takes up barely a quarter of the case and simply features two blued hands.

With fusee chain production at its peak in the 18th century, manufacturers turned to the orphanages to recruit their workers. Young girls, whose hands were small, were particularly suited to the job of producing the chains, some of which were slender enough to fit through the eye of a needle.

Jaeger-LeCoultre's Master case is home to a different beast here, namely the calibre 947, a minute repeater movement. Pull the lever on the left hand side of the case to its stop, release, and you will be treated to a combination of chimes that reveal the hours, quarter-hours and minutes. The 'code' takes a little while to figure out, but it's no matter, because watching the twin hammers strike their gongs through the skeletonised dial is very compelling.

Despite the case sharing much of its styling with its cheaper siblings, the feeling of luxury is far from compromised. The understated simplicity lets the sublime detailing do the talking and doesn't crowd the artisanal showpiece bristling under the dial. With the movement laid out back to front, the rear is not as interesting to look at as the dial side, but the decoration of what is there is stunning nonetheless. It's easy for watch manufacturers to make a mess of high complications in the attempt to put them front and centre, but Jaeger-LeCoultre doesn't fall for that. This is sheer, discreet class that rewards a keen eye with unsurpassable craftsmanship.

The minute repeater may seem like an unnecessary luxury today, but the complication did have its practical uses. As well as providing a means for visually impaired people to tell the time, it also served to aid time-curious users in an era before artificial lighting had become widespread.

At first, Breguet's 7800 simply looks to be a well-decorated three hander, but almost immediately questions are raised by the 48mm case size and the prolific use of musical notation in the decoration. The more astute will then also notice two little windows in the dial, not to mention the addition of a secondary crown and two pushers on the left hand side of the case. The explanation is simple, even if the execution is not: this a musical watch.

On the underside of the dial, pins are scattered in a seemingly disordered fashion, but one press of the top left pusher brings clarity. The intricately guilloched dial - a marvel in itself—begins to rotate, and the pins engage with a fifteen-toothed comb to play Rossini's 'The Thieving Magpie'. Being Breguet, there's some new tech in there too, including an array of magnets that manage wear and background noise from the mechanism, plus a Liquid metal membrane that amplifies the music.

This article started with a challenge, but it's clear that it's going to end in stalemate. It's a cop-out I know, but for every blow struck by one, the other parries, leaving neither with an advantage over the other. We're fortunate enough to live in a time where the collective centuries of these two old greats are beyond compare, and it would be borderline sacrilege to suggest that one was better than the other. Still, it was fun trying.

As well as a Liquidmetal membrane, Breguet utilises a series of slots in the caseback to amplify the sound produced by the calibre 0900. Impressively, despite it having several large holes in its case, Breguet have managed to give the 7800 a water resistance of thirty metres.

Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Tourbillon 1658420

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