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on 9 May 2012
There's quite a number of books reviewing management models and strategic insights for luxury brands. None, however, take a step back and think, What's luxury really all about?

This is the first book I've read that provides a clear-cut answer, and is bold enough to give examples. Simple, effective and actionable as the definition of Meta-luxury is, the book is also lavish in content and perspectives. Philosophy, architecture, microeconomics, music, art, paradox - the dots are connected in an engaging and unpredictable way.

While most marketing books seem to be desperate in stripping luxury down to numbers and phases, this one celebrates it as a culture and an economy. What comes out of these pages is depth and respect - as well as breadth of thought. You won't read about Stradivari, Japanese laquer or Renzo Piano in your average marketing strategy handbook.

If you're looking for a book that tells you how to do things, don't bother. If you're looking for a book that makes you think, don't miss it - and enjoy it.
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on 29 April 2012
This is a great read and the inspiring contributors serve to underline the relevance of this subject. The authors tackle the essence of the term `Meta-luxury' from its very core in terms of branding to a broader, philosophical outlook backed up by some key product creators. It comes to light that it is from a pursuit of excellence that such a product or culture has been born. The ultimate quality of craftsmanship and concept gives a ML brand its longevity and timelessness. It is unique. It is relentless. It can be used as a benchmark and remain unchallenged.

Paolo Fazioli reveals that the beauty in a piano is not solely about the outcome of how it looks or the way a pianist plays it. The physics, mathematics and the passion behind the making of this instrument is as beautiful and pure as the intended result. Indeed the process itself and the various intricate elements produce an instrument that has the ultimate in sound, craftsmanship and aesthetics. This piano is altogether beautiful and almost beyond itself as a physical object.

Most importantly, this book got me asking questions, and there are many things to ponder here. We have the in-depth theory behind `Meta-luxury' but we also have some trailblazers in their respective fields revealing to us that this is a search for something higher than itself. It is the embodiment of why we dare to dream and why only very few of us dare to live that, seemingly, unattainable dream.
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on 26 April 2012
I was hooked up by the title, and the content kept the promise. Out of the stack of books with the "L" word in the title, this is definitely one of the few I'd recommend. An engaging read, a fresh angle - and most importantly NOT the typical dull stuff about luxury, fashion, consumers, retail and emerging markets.

The authors dive well below the surface of things, rise above cliches, draw conclusions. Is it a book about "culture", too, as the subtitle suggests? Yep, guess you could say that.

The Meta-luxury model comes together nicely as a whole, with the authors defining and nailing down four "pillars" (craftsmanship, focus, history, rarity) that are supposedly common to "true" luxury brands. I've had fun testing them against brands I can think of, and they do draw a line of some sort. As far as the interviews are concerned, some are great reads, others less so - but at least it's never the usual corporate bla bla.

On the negative side (that's the missing star), elegant as the writing is in some spots, it's also annoingly self-conscious elsewhere.

All in all, a worthwhile read and a different point of view.
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on 24 August 2014
Not a book that can be read easily. Couldn't get past the first few pages.

It's like the used the thesaurus for every word they used and wanted to use 10 words where they could have use 2.

Overly complicated, textbook-like book, especially for a busy business person or professional.
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on 24 April 2012
Interesting and in places thought provoking, with some unusual commentators for this subject matter including the delightful Micheal Scott (who knew history could be so easy on the eye). Despite its best intentions the authors don't tell me anything about Luxury that hasn't already been said (Craftmanship, Focus, History & Rarity - really ? NSS) Not sure what the purpose of the book is, or for whom it is written. I really wanted to like it but at best it left me shrugging my shoulders and at worst a bit frustrated with some fairly pretentious language (introducing chapters in Latin?). Borrow it from the Library.
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on 9 May 2012
I was a bit disappointed with this book. It seemed to lack pointed advice that went beyond basic common sense. I found The Luxury Strategy by Kapferer and Bastien a lot more insightful.
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on 12 August 2013
the book is pretentious, a typical sentence is just a long list of fancy adjectives with no substance. it's also incredibly long winded. thumbs down.
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on 22 May 2015
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