THE STEIGENBERGER Grandhotel Belvedere may be only a three minute walk from the conference centre – but, really, there’s only one way to do Davos. In an igloo.
Such is the sub-zero lot of the Occupy protesters, who yesterday unveiled their accommodation for the World Economic Forum in the Swiss ski resort next week: Camp Igloo, an encampment that sleeps 50 anti-capitalist activists in ice houses. Two heated teepees will also be erected – presumably for those who develop hypothermia.
“When I saw the protesters were heading out to the WEF in Davos and swapping their tents for igloos, I thought I was having my leg pulled,” said one fund manager. But sure enough, there the protesters were at the camp near Davos train station, standing on a podium made of snow to reveal that each ice-house took five hours to make.
The nearest the Occupy London movement has got to making an igloo, meanwhile, is transporting a large block of ice to St Paul’s last Saturday and watching it melt on the steps of the cathedral to “highlight” climate change. “It is very creative of the Davos protesters to make igloos,” said Occupy London spokesman Spyros Van Leemnen. “I am sure it will be fun… for a while.”
THIRD TIME LUCKY
THIRD TIME lucky for serial stockbroking chief Andrew Monk, who reckons his latest business, the resources specialist VSA Capital, will be more successful than both his previous firms Oriel Securities and Blue Oar. “My friends are saying, ‘this time, Andrew, don’t lose it,’” Monk told The Capitalist yesterday.
He was in bullish mood as shares in VSA Capital jumped more than 50 per cent after it said it would post a profit of more than £500,000 this year.
VSA also raised $100m (£65.3m) for oil and gas exploration company New Group from a group of Chinese investors operating out of Hong Kong.
“We have proved we can raise serious amounts of money in Hong Kong and China – that is where the money is,” added Monk as chancellor George Osborne embarked on his three-day tour of Asia. “But Rome wasn’t built in a day.”
ST JAMES’S is the new Mayfair, says a source with his eye on the 50 St James’s development, the newly opened members club Low and, this week, the re-opening of the legendary sixties venue The Scotch.
In its heyday, the club was the scene of Jim Hendrix’s first London gig in 1966, and tomorrow night Freddie Achom, the chairman of Rosemont Luxury Brand Group and the owner of Jalouse, re-opens the venue as a speakeasy with a 5am licence.
The club will only admit people who are recognised on the door, however – which is why its backers are reluctant to reveal its exact address. “The Scotch will only hold 100 people,” says my man with the guestlist. “But most of those 100 people will know each other.”
IN THE SWIM
WILL 2012 be the year Credit Suisse’s UK chief executive James Leigh-Pemberton swims the Channel?
After all, he did promise yesterday that the bank’s employees will take part in “a wide variety of creative fundraising activities” over the coming year to raise money for homeless charity Centrepoint, which was yesterday announced as Credit Suisse’s new official cause. No pressure.