March 3, 2007
Type Styles of the Rich & Famous
I just got back from the Bahamas. Paradise Island, to be exact. And, no, my trip had nothing whatsoever to do with Anna Nicole Smith, whose dead body arrived in Nassau just as I was heading home. (Although I was warned to leave for the airport extra early so that I wouldn’t get caught in funeral traffic or, worse, stuck in a log jam of TV camera crews going through customs.)
I was staying at the mega-resort Atlantis where, among other things, they have a marina frequented by yachts so big that, in a pinch, they could probably double as aircraft carriers. And I noticed that there was a preferred aesthetic for displaying the names of these vessels: shiny, laser-cut metal signs, often rear-illuminated.
Any of these signs would have looked perfectly at home over the doorway of a mini-mall boutique, but they seemed oddly tacky attached to so much boat. It made me think that there was an opening for a clever designer to become typeface consultant to the yacht-owning class, perhaps a lucrative sideline for Hoefler & Frere-Jones or Prof. Spiekermann.
Oh, and on a foray into downtown Nassau, I noticed a business that appeared to specialize in an increasingly scarce commodity. The assorted A.N.Smith litigants — not to mention the yacht owners –might do well to pay a visit.