Aristotle Onassis

Now that old world style is surging up again—specifically the double-breasted variety—we’d like to salute one of the gents who pulled it off best: Mr. Aristotle Onassis. Consider this your master class in tycoon style.

Perfectly Embodied:
Onassis had two trademarks: thick glasses and double-breasted suits—usually with some variety of poufed pocket square. The glasses have their followers (ahem) but we’re mostly interested in how well he pulled off the DB. Thanks to his natural swagger, the look fell somewhere between the boardroom and the speakeasy—but given that he spent his life blurring the line between investment and bribery, it’s a natural fit. Did we mention he knew his way around both a tux and a yacht?

Words of Wisdom:
Don’t get too much sleep and don’t tell anybody your troubles.

The Backstory:
Don’t let the titan-of-industry stuff fool you; Onassis lived harder than most rock stars. In particular, he made all the great parties in New York and London for a decade running, bedding Maria Callas along the way. Well into his 60s, he was closing down nightclubs and making his way home near dawn. He was a breed of tycoon you don’t see much in the hedge-fund age: gleefully competitive, larger than life and above all, deeply committed to being interestesting. Raise a glass, gentlemen.

—R.B.

CONTRIBUTORS

  • Russell Brandom