The Most Beautiful Backgammon Boards

It is Sunday, time to play with your loved ones. Personally speaking, I love card and board games and this is one of my favorite things to do with my family on a lazy weekend. A feast for the eyes are the backgammon boards and custom-made games tables designed by Alexandra Llewellyn which I found over the EDEN BEING website.

The London based British designer stocks a collection of in-house designs, all made in the UK, that can be available immediately or personalised with engraved or painted messages, initials, and dates. They can also be commissioned with exquisite semi-precious stone and brass playing pieces.

Alexandra also takes one-off commissions for games tables and games boards, creating a truly original way to commemorate memories and life achievements. Every detail is created in close conversation with the client. What a lovely gift for a loved one!

Alexandra Llewellyn

Since her childhood, which she spent in Cairo, Alexandra has played backgammon. The rattle of dice on large wooden crate-boards signaled the game in play, as she strolled through the streets with her Egyptian step-grandfather. As she travelled more her interest in backgammon evolved, over countless games. She became enthralled by the idea that board games operate as an independent vocabulary requiring neither common language nor culture, and the idea that games bring people together.

Alexandra collaborated with legendary photographer Terry O’Neill, whose images defined the Swinging Sixties and the Seventies.

Launched in December 2010, Alexandra Llewellyn Designs embody an exquisitely unique vision of the oldest recorded board game in the world. Alexandra’s designs are owned by client’s such as Sir Richard Branson, Elle Macpherson, Jacquetta Wheeler, Sony Music, Eden Rock, Mark Ronson and Paloma Faith. I love!

LoL, Sandra

Photos: © Alexandra Llewellyn Design Ltd. 2016, some taken at Chilham Castle, Kent

Eden Rock St Barths – Eden Being

My avid readers know how much I am in love with St. Barths. It is truly my favorite place for beach holidays as it combines both, the beauty of the Caribbean with the allure of the South of France – but without being so pretentious as St. Tropez can be from time to time.

My view of the EDEN ROCK – ST BARTHS when landing on the island last month.

When I am going, I like to rent a house with my friends. But undoubtably besides that, there is not a better place to stay on the island than the EDEN ROCK – ST BARTHS, which is ‘beyond perfect’.

Impeccable attention to detail, the hallmark of Oetker Collection hotels, creativity and sheer art de vivre, make it one of the most desirable resorts in the world for the travelling elite. And the location is stunning, perched on a rocky promontory that sheers the white sands of St Jean Bay in two; there is nowhere to match EDEN ROCK – ST BARTHS for luxurious relaxation and play.

Impressions of the beach-side VILLA ROCKSTAR – a huge, ultraluxe, multi-faceted house which is being described as resembling ‘a hundred million dollar yacht on land.’

Rooms, suites and villas are steps away from the ocean and all are individually decorated in the unique style of owners David and Jane Matthews.
Live the island dream: relax in the sun or participate in water sports on the fully serviced beach; make music in VILLA ROCKSTAR’s recording studio or be a fashion icon in the ROCKSHOP boutique… and if you are staying somewhere else, please at least enjoy a drink at the Rock Bar or a delicious dinner at the On the Rocks restaurant with its exceptional setting on the top of the Eden Rock, with unforgettable views over St Jean Bay.

Dining at the On the Rocks restaurant with a spectacular view.

Both spots are places of choice to meet and mingle with adventurous and discerning connoisseurs and of course to run into many celebrities.

David Matthews with me

At star of its own is the owner David Matthews, whom I met for drinks at the famous Rock Bar to discuss a very special collaboration which I proudly announce today in this post further down. But before that, I would like to tell you a little bit more about this adventurer and true visionary who arrived on the island of St. Barths with his wife Jane and their four children in September 1995.

Hotel on the rocks

The family had purchased Eden Rock from legendary island aviator and local adventurer Rémy de Haenen, moving the family from London to the Caribbean to start a new more adventurous life. Wishes were granted two days after moving into the rundown buildings of Eden Rock when the powerful category four Hurricane Luis struck the island. While the storm raged the family was occasionally driven to seek shelter under the concrete sinks in the old kitchen, whilst reinforcing the old doors and windows using anything from bed frames to their recently arrived suitcases.

EDEN ROC – ST BARTHS beach facilities

Twenty years later, and transformed over that time by the Matthews family, EDEN ROCK – ST BARTHS continues to flourish and is regularly voted amongst the Top 100 hotels worldwide. The family puts this down to passion, hard work by a dedicated, loyal team and a good dose of luck too.

Family values remain at the heart of EDEN ROCK – ST BARTHS and this spirit is further strengthened by the recent partnership made with Oetker Collection who offers the greatest guest experiences at iconic masterpiece hotels around the world. David Matthews says: «It was pure luck that I met Frank Marrenbach, CEO Oetker Collection, three years ago. Now we are partners and work with the same passion to keep the very essence of this beautiful space.»

The ROCKSHOP boutique

David Matthews is very charismatic man and could have listened to him for hours but I wanted to quickly pass by the hotel’s ROCKSHOP boutique which is part of EDEN BEING, the new lifestyle and luxury retail brand from the Oetker Collection with physical boutiques in most of the resorts as well as now an online store. The idea behind this new venture is about capturing memories of your travels with a range of bespoke items and exquisite products, all carefully curated and inspired by the famous hotels.

Match made in heaven: a curated selection of CHLOÉ is also available at EDEN BEING.

Hand-painted backgammon board exclusively made for EDEN ROCK – ST BARTHS by Alexandra Llewellyn.

A commited custodian of the artisan, EDEN BEING supports craftsmen local to the Oetker Collection hotels. From watchmakers to sculptors the talented artisans produce pieces of singular beauty to capture memories gathered on your travels. And I am very proud to be a new ambassador for this beautiful lifestyle brand.

My beautiful new cuff by ADELINE GERMAIN for EDEN ROCK – ST BARTHS.

Before David took off with his Harley like a rock star himself, he gifted me with this special edition seven seas cuff by ADELINE GERMAIN that also can be found at Rockshop boutique. It is crafted with 7 rows of silver plated brass with eel and salmon leather representing the 7 world’s oceans. Lucky me to be taking a piece of paradise home!

The legendary Matthews family

His next venture? His son’s wedding in May. And guess who is going to be his daughter-in-law? No other than beautiful Pippa Middleton. A legend hotel and a legendary family!

And I am very proud to be now an EDEN girl as well…

LoL, Sandra

Photos: Courtesy of EDEN ROC – ST BARTHS 
© Sandra Bauknecht