As much has been made about the kinky sex in “Fifty Shades of Grey,” BDSM isn’t the only major fetish of the bestselling book series. The other sin is that universal turn on: money, money, money.
Anastasia Steele’s tortured romance with billionaire Christian Grey is about love, and it’s about all that bondage sex, of course. But we all know that bling can be an aphrodisiac, too. (Christian’s worth, according to Forbes, is estimated to be $2.2 billion.)
It’s a lot to keep track of, but we’ve identified every single luxury item we could nail down from director Sam Taylor- Johnson’s film version of the bestselling book series.
Christian is an Omega man, flashing two models prominently throughout the film, the white-faced Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra Chronograph ($7,200) and black-faced Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch Co-Axial Chronograph ($26,500). Omega (as opposed to a more rarified niche brand like Richard Mille) may seem like an odd choice for a billionaire, but I’m chalking that one up to author E.L. James not being a watch connoisseur. For example, that platinum one Christian gave to Ana in the book sequels doesn’t actually exist, according to our expert Stephen Pulvirent. Sorry, ladies.
Those Dunhill silver Knot and Rod cufflinks ($991) in the contract negotiation scene definitely do exist, and are just one of the sly details Christian uses to signal his lifestyle (and Academy Award-winning costume designer Mark Bridges picked to amuse the cast). He takes a more straightforward approach with his luxury leather goods-belts, briefcases, travel bags, wallet-all by Yves Saint Laurent (from $375 to $5,975 and then some). Those just say, “I’m classy.”
Christian is all about Audi, with a fleet comprising S6, S7, and S8 sedans (from $75,500 to $114,900 and up) and a Q7 crossover SUV (from $48,300), plus tight-lipped livery drivers (their silence, priceless). But only he gets to drive the v10 R8 Spyder convertible (from $167,000). He even buys Ana a red Audi A3 ($29,990) for her college graduation, selling her vintage Volkswagen Beetle in the process-without asking, of course.
One word: bespoke. When it comes to business attire, no billionaire is going off the rack, least of all Christian Grey. There were so many well-cut suits popping up onscreen I thought of negotiating my own Dom/sub contract-with a tailor.
Designer Mark Bridges kept the wool lightweight and Italian, the cuts classic, and the buttons were mainly limited to one. Although actor Jamie Dornan is slender, Bridges didn’t shy away from peaked lapels. He told me Cary Grant and modern international style icons like David Beckham and David Gandy served as inspiration to get that perfect “clean, classic, young, expensive, and sexy” look. Good quality, classic design is always in style.
Anto Beverly Hills sewed the custom shirts (from $300) and custom ties (from $185), including eight of that one gray tie. Shoes are the only thing Bridges hit Rodeo Drive to buy, as production timing didn’t allow custom work by cobblers; one pair is Prada (upward of $1,500).
Seattle aviation law allows only certain types of helicopters to be used, so while Christian’s Charlie Tango couldn’t be exactly like the book, his Eurocopter EC130’s buttery chestnut brown seats and black Bose noise-canceling headsetsare still plenty pimp. (It costs around $3.2 million.) When he surprises Anastasia down in Savannah, Georgia, for a post-breakfast glider ride, that’s a Flugzeugbau DG-1001 sailplane. Like his choice of auto, this two-seater hawk-like stunner is also German, handmade in Bruchsal to the tune of $150,000.
The Wine and Cocktails
If you’re going to drink a lot of Sancerre et Pouilly-Fumé, you’re going to want Baccarat crystal wine glasses to drink it out of-although by the shape of some of the stemware, we think we spied a Riedel or two in a scene as well. For bubbles, it’s all about the Bollinger. Christian keeps cocktails classic: a gin and tonic, either with Hendricks and a cucumber or Bombay Sapphire and lime.
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“International Contemporary, a la Tom Ford, Lenny Kravitz, and Ron Arad” is how production designer David Wasco and set designer Sandy Wasco described Christian’s personal design sensibility.
The Wascos asked, “What would a cultured twentysomething, tech-billionaire control freak in Seattle actually buy?” The answer is a Symphony SideBoard and Avenue Folding Screen by Portuguese designers Boca Do Lobo; and mid-century and deco-styled lighting by Delightfull (The Coltrane, The Ike, and The Turner); plus everything from dramatic mirrors to bedroom chairs to avant-garde gilt scones and chandeliers from Koket.
Nodding towards the Pacific Northwest location, Brabbu Design Forces created a redwood and brass side table (price upon request), to complement a one-of-a-kind redwood dining roomtable surrounded by vintage Milo Baughman dining chairs (from $1,198 for reproductions). You can find a similar table on Etsy for $17,355.
And what about that piano? It’s a Fazioli F278 Grand Piano, handmade in Italy over three years using red spruce (from the same forests Stradivarius used), with some parts plated in 18K gold. It cost $268,999. No wonder Christian’s song selections are so serious.
Like love, you can’t put a price on this set-up.