Tag Archives: China

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3 Must-See Paris Haute Couture Week Shows

As usual, Paris plays host to the biggest celebration of high fashion on earth even as the big chill rules the streets. Paris Haute Couture Fashion Week officially kicks off today, January 24, and runs till January 28 with around 30 catwalk shows lined up on the official schedule. Certain shows will be of particular interest to the fashion world this year, including one show staged with no creative director and the first steps of a fledgling fashion house in the world of haute couture.

The fashion world will cast its gaze on Paris to spot upcoming trends for spring/summer 2016/2017, even though haute couture is notoriously difficult to read. We recommend simply sitting back to enjoy the shows and the sneak preview of the gowns due to grace red carpets throughout 2016.

However, all eyes will be on three fashion houses in particular at the 2016 Haute Couture Week: Christian Dior, Yiqing Yin and Guo Pei.



Christian Dior post-Raf Simons

The departure of Raf Simons as creative director at Dior in October sent shockwaves through the fashion world. Eyes will be fixed firmly on this haute couture show, which is taking place on January 25 with no creative director. The design team alone has been in charge of this collection, as it was for the autumn/winter 2016-2017 ready-to-wear collection. This isn’t a first for Dior, which saw itself in a similar situation after parting ways with John Galliano in 2011, but this preview will still no doubt be one of the most closely watched. Dior could even take the opportunity to make its much-awaited announcement of Raf Simons’ replacement.



Newcomer Guo Pei

Haute couture’s “Chambre syndicale” announced back in November that Chinese designer Guo Pei would be joining the Paris catwalk for the first time as a special guest this year. Guo Pei’s January 27 preview will be the closing show of this prestigious fashion week (only jewelry will be shown the final day, January 28), and it’s definitely one to watch. A new arrival will understandably pique the interest of the fashion world, but Guo Pei is also known for creating a huge buzz last year when Rihanna wore her enormous yellow coat-dress to the 2015 Met Ball. Pictures of the red-carpet outfit went viral around the world and on social networks within just a few hours. As a result, this spring/summer 2016 collection is even more keenly anticipated.



A new era for Yiqing Yin

The fashion house created by Chinese-born, Paris-raised and Paris-based designer Yiqing Yin was awarded “haute couture” status back in December. Although this isn’t the first time the label has presented its collections during Haute Couture Week, it was, until now, only doing so as a guest member. This marks a new era for the young designer, who recently quit her role as creative director of Léonard to concentrate on her own label. She was also named “Best Fashion Designer” at France’s “Globes de Cristal” awards ceremony in 2015. The front row of this show is sure to be a hot ticket.

Mystery Electric Car Prototype at CES

It is a day of carbon-friendly news for us as the enigmatic Faraday Future reveals its first ever prototype vehicle January 4 on the sidelines of the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. Faraday Future, which seeks to “redefine mobility,” is named after renowned experimental physicist Michael Faraday (he of the Faraday Cage fame). The company made waves with its secrecy in the lead-up to CES and finally unveiled its first prototype vehicle while continuing to offer scant details on its ownership and structure.

Going by the shape and structure of the prototype though, we are wonder if the firm is from Gotham, with funding from Bruce Wayne. Faraday future took the wraps off its Batmobile-style vehicle (just look at it), which is part of a plan to compete against the likes of Tesla and reshape the auto sector. This baby is a 1,000 bhp monster that The Verge calls both “ridiculous” and “pretty cool,” which also sounds to us like a fair description of the mythical Bruce Wayne.

“We are embarking on a complete rethink of what mobility is,” said the company’s senior vice president of research and engineering, Nick Sampson, unveiling the “FFZERO1” prototype car on the sidelines of the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. The company actually calls this a “hypercar” and given that it theoretically crushes to race to 60mph in 3 seconds and tops out at 200mph, that is fair. For some context though, the McLaren P1 hypercar has fewer horses but goes quicker in every way. Of course, the P1 is also a real car so there is that.

Sampson said Faraday intends to move “very fast” on its plans and has already announced a $1 billion factory to be built near Las Vegas.

In just 18 months since its founding, Faraday has 750 employees and intends to produce its first car within two years. Faraday will move fast because it will act “more like a technology company than an automotive company,” Sampson said.

At the event, Faraday confirmed a “strategic partnership” with China-based media and tech firm Letv, but did not elaborate on its ownership or even indicate the identity of its chief executive.

The company told AFP that Chinese billionaire Jia Yueting is among its investors and popular speculation has it that the company is a Chinese venture. What is known though is that its employees include former executives from Apple, BMW, Google, NASA, Tesla and other prominent firms.

Sampson said Faraday has created a variable architecture platform to create multiple vehicles, and is using techniques such as virtual reality to speed up development. He also said Faraday was exploring “new types of ownership” for the vehicles, but did not elaborate.

Based in California, Faraday Future announced its factory plans in early December, saying it would be a “first phase” for the new company, which is yet to get a vehicle on the road.

The facility is “something more than an ordinary ‘assembly line,'” according to its announcement, and will include three million square feet (280,000 square meters) “for passionate creators and diligent visionaries, where new concepts will be refined and implemented.”

It will create 4,500 jobs in the region.

This report was compiled by in-house writers, in combination with a wire report and image from the AFP.

13 Hotels We are Waiting for in 2016

From the highly anticipated opening of a Toy Story-themed hotel at Shanghai Disney, to the grand reopening of two iconic Parisian landmarks, 2016 will be a big year for the luxury hotel market. While tens of thousands of new properties will open their doors for the first time in 2016, here is a selection of properties that are noteworthy for raising the bar in luxury, marking a milestone, or helping to transform the local tourism landscape.


In the last few years, Paris saw the temporary shuttering of two of its most iconic and luxurious hotels, the Ritz Paris and Hotel Crillon. This year, they will compete for attention as both are slated to re-open their doors after extensive and lengthy renovations.

Ritz Paris (March, 2016)

The hotel has been undergoing renovations since July 2012 – the biggest makeover in the hotel’s 117 year-old history. The refurbishment includes a new spa by luxury fashion brand Chanel, called “Chanel au Ritz Paris.” The hotel began accepting reservations for stays starting March 14, 2016.

Hotel de Crillon, Paris (2016)

With a history dating back to 1758, the Hotel Crillon (pictured above) is a veritable institution in Paris, located at Place de la Concorde where the Champs-Elysees begins. In 2013, it was announced that Rosewood Hotels & Resorts would take over the management of the property. The restoration will entail a contemporary overhaul led by Lebanese artistic director Aline d’Amman and architect Richard Martinet. It was also announced that Karl Lagerfeld has been commissioned to design two suites. An exact opening date has yet to be disclosed.

Nobu Hotel, Shoreditch, London (First quarter of 2016)

Nobu Hospitality (pictured below), co-owned by Japanese chef Nobu Matsuhisa and actor Robert De Niro, has announced plans to open its first European hotel in London’s trendy Shoreditch area in 2016. Expected to open in the first quarter of the year, the hotel’s five storeys are fractured into angular balconies and cantilevered steel beams using printed layered, glass and reflective facades to play with reflection and light. The hotel will be comprised of 156 rooms while the dining options will be helmed by chef Matsuhisa.

Il Sereno Lake Como, Italy (Spring 2016)

This five-star boutique hotel will be the sister establishment of the luxurious Le Sereno Saint Barths. Located 6 km from the center of Como and 50 minutes from Milan, the design of the new 30-room hotel has been overseen by Patricia Urquiola, who has focused on natural materials to create an aesthetic that is both timeless and full of character, intimate and casual. Urquiola’s studio will also design the interior of the ferry that will shuttle guests around the lake. Room rates will range from 600 to 4500 euros.

nobu shoreditch

Nobu Hotel


The Oberoi Marrakech (Third quarter of 2016)

Located 20 minutes from the city center, the luxurious property is built within 25 acres of citrus orchards and ancient olive groves. Each villa and suite comes with a private pool and views of the Atlas mountains, while rooms are spacious, modern and feature handcrafted Moroccan design features. The brand’s signature spa is built on a private island on a lake within the orchard, and offers Ayurvedic and Moroccan-inspired treatments. Facilities also include Moroccan hammams, yoga studio and outdoor pavilion.


Four Seasons Hotel New York Downtown (mid-2016)

Billed as the little sister to its flagship New York property in Midtown, the second Four Seasons hotel will open in the Tribeca district, a short stroll from the new World Trade Center, Wall Street and the Soho neighborhood and serve as a dual residential and hotel property. The 185 rooms are designed by Yabu Pushelberg. Dining will be provided by Wolfgang Puck and his CUT steakhouse restaurant and bar.

The James Hotel, Los Angeles (2016)

Once construction is complete in 2016, The James Hotel will open the doors to the first new ground-up hotel in West Hollywood in 30 years. The boutique property will open in the heart of Sunset Strip at the corner of Sunset and La Cienega Boulevards, and house 286 rooms, two restaurants and a rooftop and lobby bar. The LA location will be the third for the brand after locations in Chicago and New York. The brand’s philosophy embraces wellness, sustainability, local art and culture.

Il Sereno Lake Como

Il Sereno Lake Como

Middle East

Four Seasons Abu Dhabi, UAE (2016)

Located in the heart of the new Central Business District, the opening of the Four Seasons Hotel Abu Dhabi at Al Maryah Island will mark the first hotel for the chain in the Emirati capital. The property will open along a stretch of prime waterfront, and house a retro-modern Chicago steakhouse, cocktail bar, and poolside restaurant. Along with 200 rooms, the property will also feature 124 private and serviced residences.

St. Regis Cairo, Egypt (October 2016)

Organized as two towers, the St. Regis will house 292 lavish rooms that includes 63 suites. The mixed use property will also offer 99 guest apartments and 117 residences. Located on the north end of Corniche Road, rooms will offer views of the Nile River and in proximity to the pyramids and retail area.


Wynn Palace Cotai, Macau (June 25, 2016)

Originally scheduled to open in March 2016, the ambitious Wynn Palace Cotai will be delayed by another three months for a set date of June 25. The $4.1 billion, floral-themed property features 1,700 rooms spanning 28 storeys, and an artificial lake. To enter the grounds, guests will board air-conditioned SkyCabs that cross the 8-acre Performance Lake into the heart of the resort. Like its predecessors, the Wynn Palace will house an opulent spa, salon, luxury retailers and gourmet dining restaurants.

Mandarin Oriental, Bali (End of 2016)

Located on the southern Bukit peninsula, the luxury hotel group’s newest property will be built on elevated terraces to offer commanding views of the Indian Ocean. The resort will be comprised of 97 villas, each with a private pool and 24 guestrooms. The signature restaurant will be a cliff-top, cantilevered dining space with sweeping ocean views. Guests will also be able to indulge in luxurious spa services that include Balinese treatments.

Shanghai Disney (Spring 2016)

After experiencing construction delays, the opening of Disney’s third theme park in Asia after Hong Kong and Tokyo is expected to open its pearly gates in spring. When it does, the park will also open the doors to two highly anticipated themed hotels, The Shanghai Disneyland Hotel and a Toy Story Hotel. Not particularly encouraging is the image supplied for this story but we digress! At the Art Nouveau-inspired Shanghai Disneyland Hotel, guests will be greeted by bronze statues of Mickey and Minnie Mouse, while Toy Story fans will find Woody and Buzz Lightyear at the hotel courtyard.

Rosewood Phuket (2016)

To open on Emerald Bay in Western Phuket, the luxury property will be comprised of 80 villas and 32 residences that are designed to blend in with its natural hillside forest surroundings. Retractable glass walls will provide guests with unobstructed views of their environment, while garden rooftops and cantilevered structures will help the villas meld with the landscape. Dining options include a rustic Thai seafood eatery on the beach, poolside eatery, bistro and terrace bar, while a Sense spa will feature six spa villas and a swimming pool.

Shanghai Disney

Shanghai Disney

Dior Opens Largest China Flagship

Christian Dior has opened its largest flagship store yet on mainland China. The Beijing ‘China World’ boutique is split across two levels, featuring a floor-to-ceiling, double layer glass façade that emulates fine feminine fabric in the fashion house’s ‘Cannage’ print.

Designed by Peter Marino, the interiors blend inspiration taken from the brand’s Paris flagship, dotted with a carefully curated group of artworks by contemporary artists. Each of the 10 pieces, which include a bench by Terence Main and a video art wall by Yorame, reflect the codes of the house. There is also a sculpture “Siamese Metal 5” from British artist Richard Deacon, the work “Waterwall, Roselyn” by Gregory Ryan and table lamps by Véronique Rivemale are also displayed in the store. On the second floor, the footwear section is adorned by a “Gaia Imprint” Low Table, designed by Vincent Dubour.

Classic furniture pieces from Guillaume Piéchaud, Paolo Giordano and Timothy Horn have been placed strategically throughout the space, and the store also features a private VIP salon garnished with two Mineral Commodes designed by Juan & Paloma.


Dior will launch limited-edition products to be sold exclusively in the China World boutique to mark its opening. Products include the Diorama bag in metallic lizard or blue and pink python, a Dior VIII Grand Bal “Plissé” watch, a “Rose des Vents” bracelet or necklace in pink gold, ruby and mother of pearl, and the “Diorelita” Zodiac Monkey collection in gold and red lacquer.

Located in the city’s Chaoyang district, the store opened on December 21.


Contempo Chinese Art at Fondation Louis Vuitton

Anyone who has paid even passing attention to art auctions in the last 10 years cannot have escaped the power of contemporary Chinese art. It is surprising to us then to hear that the upcoming exhibition at the Fondation Louis Vuitton in January is the first time an entire exhibition has been devoted to contemporary Chinese artists in France in 10 years. The exhibition, running though the spring, brings together 12 Chinese artists and their work.

Entitled “Bentu,” it references the concept of motherland or native land, which is what the term refers to specifically. Make no mistake though, this is not about national boundaries. Instead, it represents a dialogue between local and global and a process of self-discovery.

Works on display will examine a changing Chinese society with artists from different generations employing a wide range of techniques and materials. Alongside the installations, there will be classical and contemporary musical performances, as well as films and poetry.


Liu Shiyuan; “From Happiness to Wherever”; 2015

Among the veteran artists on display is Liu Xiaodong, who has experimented with both acting and painting. Also exhibiting is artist Cao Fei, who has directed and produced experimental documentaries. Liu Shiyuan, of a younger generation, will be also showing her work.

The exhibition examines local cultures, tradition, new technologies as well as the interaction between urban and rural. The focal point being identity.

The “Bentu” exhibition is not meant to give an overview of contemporary Chinese art.  Rather, organizers want to present the multifaceted aspect of it and how its forms are constantly evolving.

The exposition will begin on January 27, 2016 and run until April. Music, poetry and films will continue until September 5. The Foundation Louis Vuitton will also highlight a selection of its permanent collection of Chinese art from January 27 until September 5.


Cao Fei; “Strangers”; 205-2016

China Rendez-Vous Reboots Pioneering Hainan Boat Show

The forthcoming edition of SO! HAINAN, organized by Asian boating industry veteran China Rendez-Vous, will be one to look out for because it will effectively serve as the relaunch of Hainan Rendez-Vous. This is particularly exciting news for us because we have covered the previous editions of Hainan Rendez-Vous so often in the past that we even have a tag for it (just scroll to bottom of this story). Just to revisit the past for a bit, China Rendez-Vous was founded in 2009 by Delphine Lignieres and is currently known for both SO! DALIAN and SO! HAINAN, along with the Bund Classic and Ski & Style.


The 2015 edition of Hainan Rendez-Vous will take place between December 3-6 at the Clear Water Bay Marina on Hainan island, China. The organizers have succeeded in signing a long-term partnership with Agile Group, China’s leading integrated real estate developers. According to the organizers, the concept of the event has been dramatically changed to reflect the most recent trends in China and the new dates will coincide with the peak season in Hainan. Leading international yacht and lifestyle brands have already confirmed their presence and the organizers are putting together a dense program of lifestyle activities to cater to the 20,000 expected elite visitors.

CRV marine with us-w800-h600

Alan Chan, General Manager of Clear Water Bay (Asia’s largest open-water marina), declared: “We are delighted to partner with China Rendez-Vous and to welcome SO! HAINAN at Clear Water Bay Marina. With a pristine reputation, strong track-record and great professionalism, China Rendez-Vous is the ideal long-term partner for Clear Water Bay. Our world class new coastal holiday resort is the perfect choice for SO! HAINAN and we look forward to welcoming guests from all over China to celebrate the yachting lifestyle”.

Facade Sunrise-w800-h600

Delphine Lignieres, Founder & CEO of China Rendez-Vous declared: “We are very proud to partner with Agile Group for the incredible show we are re-launching. SO! HAINAN is set to become the biggest and most important yacht show in the region and Clear Water Bay is the perfect venue to ensure its success and growth: huge open water marina, beautiful beach and amazing hotel choices.”



8 Top Selling Artists 2015

Often anticapitalist by nature and sometimes offering scathing critiques of socio-economic systems, contemporary art is paradoxically highly sought-after for its commercial potential. While classics famously hold their value well enough to be considered an asset class, contemporary art  – where the artist is frequently alive and still working – is required to demonstrate its potential at auction regularly. Of course, the value of most contemporary art is nebulous but therein lies the excitement.

Our friends at Art Republik give us the low-down on eight living artists whose best-selling work combined nets more than USD150 million…


Jeff Koons

Jeff Koons was born in 1955 in York, Pennsylvania, United States of America. He received his B.F.A. from the Maryland Institute College of Art in 1976. Koons is known for his exploration of contemporary consumer culture in his oeuvre. His series of works include “Equilibrium” (1985), which feature ready-made basketballs floating in distilled water in tanks made of glass and steel,  “Banality” (1988), mostly sculptures of toys and popular icons rendered in porcelain and polychromed wood, and “Made in Heaven” (1989-1991), centered around photorealist paintings and sculptures of the artist engaged in sexual intercourse in varied positions with his ex-wife Ilona Staller, an adult film star.

Koons’ “Balloon Dog” sculptures in five color versions – blue, magenta, yellow, orange and red – are probably among his most well known works. These are from the “Celebration” series, which presents giant mirror-polished stainless steel sculptures with transparent color coating.

The artist has pioneered new techniques for the making of his artworks. For the “Celebration” series, for example, he collaborated with Arnold AG, a metalwork mill in Germany to make the sculptures’ high-shine surface. In addition, he used the CAT scan, typically used in hospitals, to get an all-round imaging of subjects so that the enlarged versions could be reproduced to perfection. He also has a unique way of working. Koons’ works are made in a studio that employs more than 100 assistants who fabricate his work.


“Balloon Dog (Orange)”

2008 was a particularly productive year for Koons, with solo exhibitions at Château de Versailles, France, Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, and Neue Nationalgalerie, Berlin. More recently, in 2014, “Jeff Koons: A Retrospective”, was held at the Whitney Museum of American Art. It has now traveled to the Centre Pompidou, Paris, and will be at the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao later in the year.

Koons’ first million-dollar work sold was the “Pink Panther” (1988) from the “Banality” series, which transacted at Christie’s in 1999 for USD1.8 million (1988). In 2013, he became the most expensive living artist when “Balloon Dog (Orange)” sold for USD52 million at Christie’s. He holds the title to this date.

Koons lives and works in New York.

In Brief

  • Age: 60
  • Nationality: American
  • Gallery Representation: David Zwirner Gallery, Gagosian Gallery, Galerie Jérôme de Noirmont, Galerie Max Hetzler
  • Big Break: Koons’ “Banality” series (1988), featuring the work, “Michael Jackson and Bubbles”, exhibited at the Sonnabend Gallery in New York City in 1989.
  • Most Expensive Work Sold: “Balloon Dog (Orange)”, 1994-2000, mirror-polished stainless steel with transparent color coating, 307.3 x 363.2 x 114.3cm. Price including buyer’s premium: USD58.4 million. Sold at Christie’s, New York, November 2013


Zeng Fanzhi, Mask Series No. 5, 1994, oil on canvas, 180 x 150 cm. Sold at Sotheby’s, Hong Kong, October 2010.

Zeng Fanzhi

Zeng Fanzhi was born in Wuhan, China in 1964. He graduated from Hubei Academy of Fine Arts in 1991, where he specialized in oil painting.

Before moving to Beijing in 1993, he began painting the “Hospital” series, showing tableaus from the hospital, and the “Meat” series that contrast human beings with butchered meat, inspired by the hospital and the butcher’s shop he lived next to. From these first works, the characters began to be drawn with disproportionately larger hands, which persisted into his “Mask” series.

Zeng Fanzhi is probably best known for his paintings in this series of figures standing in groups or alone, wearing white masks with big smiles. This was motivated by his interactions with people in the capital of China, whom he thought hid their true identities and feelings from others and perhaps from themselves as well, in a representation of the Chinese people’s feelings of isolation in the decade after the Tiananmen Square protests in 1989.

An adventurous artist who has experimented with different styles, Zeng began drawing landscapes in 2004, mostly covered with bare intertwining branches, inspired by the unexpected beauty he saw in a pot of Chinese wisteria in his studio. He also painted portraits of luminaries in western culture such as Francis Bacon and Andy Warhol in 2010.


“The Last Supper”, 2001, oil on canvas, 220 x 395 cm.

Zeng first set a new world auction record for Chinese contemporary art in May 2008, when his diptych Mask Series 1996 No. 6 sold for USD9.7 million at Christie’s in Hong Kong. This featured eight members of the Young Pioneers, the Communist Party’s youth movement, wearing their representative red scarves, and Zeng’s signature masks. In 2013, his painting, “The Last Supper” sold for USD23 million at Sotheby’s. He remains the most expensive living Asian artist.

In the same year, the Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris presented the first French retrospective of 40 paintings and sculptures from Zeng made between 1990 and 2012.

Zeng lives and works in Beijing.

In Brief

  • Age: 51
  • Nationality: Chinese
  • Gallery Representation: Gagosian Gallery, Acquavella Galleries, Gallery Hyundai, ShangArt, Hanart TZ Gallery
  • Big Break: Fresh out of art school, paintings from Zeng Fanzhi’s “Hospital” series were selected by Johnson Chang from Hanart TZ Gallery based in Hong Kong to be included in an exhibition at Hong Kong Arts Centre in 1993 titled “China’s New Art, Post-1989”. This introduced the artist to the art community, and at the same time gave Zeng tremendous encouragement to continue pursuing his career as an artist.
  • Most Expensive Work Sold: “The Last Supper”, 2001, oil on canvas, 220 x 395 cm. Price including buyer’s premium: USD23.3 million, Sotheby’s Hong Kong, October 2013


Installation view, Takashi Murakami’s exhibition, In the Land of the Dead, Stepping on the Tail of a Rainbow, Gagosian Gallery, New York, 10 November – January 17 2015 © 2014 Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All Rights Reserved. Courtesy Gagosian Gallery. Photography by Robert McKeever.

Takashi Murakami

Takashi Murakami was born in 1962 in Tokyo, and received his BFA, MFA and PhD from the Tokyo University of the Arts, formerly the Tokyo National University of Fine Arts and Music.

A multi-hyphenate, Murakami is involved in many aspects of the art world, and works as an artist, a gallerist, a curator and an art theorist, among others. He founded the Hiropon factory in Tokyo in 1996 for the production of his works, which later evolved into Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd., an art production and art management corporation. In addition to the production and marketing of Murakami’s art and related work, it manages and promotes emerging artists.

Murakami has organized several influential exhibitions based on the theory of a tradition of a pervasive superflat look in contemporary Japanese visual culture, typified by manga, which refer to comic books, and anime, which refer to animation, that tend towards two-dimensionality. The first exhibition, titled simply “Superflat”, was held at Parco Gallery in Tokyo and Nagoya. It subsequently traveled to MoCA gallery in the Pacific Design Centre in Los Angeles, Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, and Henry Art Gallery, Seattle, in 2001. He has followed up with exhibitions such as “Coloriage” at the Fondation Cartier pour l’art contemporain in Paris in 2002 and “Little Boy: The Art of Japan’s Exploding Subcultures” at the Japan Society in New York in 2005.

A pioneer in art-fashion collaborations, Murakami began working with Louis Vuitton in 2003. He first created the “Monogram Multicolore”, which featured the “LV” monogram in 33 bright colors. Since then, he has made special prints for the luxury fashion house’s leather goods that incorporate motifs such as cherry blossoms and pandas. In 2008, the limited edition “Monogramouflage” collection, for all products from iPhone cases to luggage, featured a juxtaposition of the khaki and beige camouflage print and the Louis Vuitton monogram.



Takashi Murakami, “Lionel Messi and a Universe of Flowers,” 2014, acrylic and platinum leaf on canvas laid down on board, 70 7/8 x 70 7/8 in

A notable recent exhibition is “Takashi in Superflat Wonderland” at the PLATEAU Samsung Museum of Art in Seoul Korea in late 2013, where some of the artist’s most iconic works were on display, including one of the artist’s “Superflat Flowers” sculptures made in 2010. Also in the exhibition was a fiberglass sculpture of “Miss Ko2”, a buxom character created by Murakami as a commentary on otaku culture, an obsession with anime and manga, and the resultant desire to have these unreal characters come to life.

Not content to rest on his laurels, Murakami is constantly innovating. In 2013, he released his first feature film, “Jellyfish Eyes”, which mixes live action with cartoon characters, with plans for a sequel.

Murakami lives and works in Tokyo.

In Brief

  • Age: 53
  • Nationality: Japanese
  • Gallery Representation: Gagosian Gallery, Blum & Poe, Galerie Perrotin, Kaikai Kiki Gallery
  • Big Break: Murakami had an international traveling retrospective, “©Murakami”, showing over 90 works by the artist that kicked off at The Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA), Los Angeles in 2008. In an interview in W Magazine in April 2013, Murakami said that this exhibition was a turning point in his career, stating that he thought the conventional view before the exhibition was that he was merely an artist influenced by Japanese subculture. The exhibition was persuasive of the strength of his artworks to have a place in art history.
  • Most Expensive Work Sold: “My Lonesome Cowboy”, 1998, oil, acrylic, fiberglass, iron, 254 x 116.8 x 91.4cm. Price including buyer’s premium: USD15.1 million, Sotheby’s, New York, May 2008


Tracey Emin, My Bed, 1998, mattress, linens, pillows, objects, 211 x 234 cm. World auction record for the artist at Christie’s, London, July 2014. Courtesy Christie’s Images Ltd. 2014.

Tracey Emin

Tracey Emin was born in London in 1963, and studied at Maidstone College of Art and the Royal College of Art, London, where she earned her Master’s degree in 1989.

Emin’s art is inspired by her personal life. Her artworks reflect universal emotions and are both relatable and confrontational. These are created in wide range of mediums, including, painting, photography, textile, video, installation and sculpture.

In 1999, Emin was shortlisted for the Turner Prize, an annual prize awarded to a British visual artist below the age of 50. This was for her provocative work, “My Bed”, an installation of the artist’s bed complete with liquor bottles, cigarette butts, worn underwear, condoms and rumpled stained bedsheets, the scene of a post-breakup breakdown.

Among other works by Emin are her “I’ve Got It All” photograph from 2000 showing the artist seated on the floor with ample cleavage, her legs wide open, bills and coins pressed against her crotch. She is also known for her neon light installations, which she has produced since the 1990s, featuring evocative messages such as “You Forgot to Kiss My Soul” (2001) and “You Loved Me Like a Distant Star” (2012).


Tracey Emin

Emin has exhibited extensively. In 2007, she represented Britain at the 52nd Venice Biennale. The first major retrospective exhibition of Emin’s work opened at the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art in 2008, and traveled to Centro de Arte Contemporáneo de Málaga, Spain and the Kunstmuseum Bern, Switzerland. In May 2011, Emin had a major survey exhibition, “Love is What You Want” at the Hayward Gallery in London.

Emin currently lives and works in London.

In Brief

  • Age 52
  • Nationality British
  • Gallery Representation Lehmann Maupin, White Cube
  • Big Break Charles Saatchi’s “Sensation” exhibition at the Royal Academy, London included Emin’s much-discussed work “Everyone I Have Ever Slept With 1963-1995”, which was a tent embroidered with over 100 names of people she had slept with, including 32 lovers, and 80 people she had only slept next to.
  • Most Expensive Work Sold “My Bed”, 1998, mattress, linens, pillows, objects, 79 x 211 x 234 cm. Price including buyer’s premium: USD4.3 million, Christie’s, London, July 2014


Gerhard Richter, Abstraktes Bild, 1986, oil on canvas, 300.6 x 250.5 cm. World auction record for the artist at Sotheby’s, London, February 2015. Courtesy Sotheby’s.

Gerhard Richter

Gerhard Richter was born in 1932 in Dresden, Germany. He studied at the Staatliche Kunstakademie, or the State Academy of Art, in Düsseldorf under the eminent German artist Karl Otto Götz from 1961 to 1964.

Richter has had an illustrious career spanning over half a century. Beginning in the 1960s, the author painted, in grey scale, renditions of blown-up blurred black-and-white photographs he had taken of still lifes, portraits and landscapes, such as “Kitchen Chair” (1965), “Helen” (1963) and possibly his most well-known work of the period, “Domplatz, Mailand” (1968), measuring nearly 3 meters by 3 meters, featuring the Cathedral Square in Milan. This iconic work appears to vibrate with Richter’s signature fuzzy blur in his photo-paintings, which had the capacity to soften or destabilize an image.

Beginning in the late 1960s, Richter created his “Colour Chart” and “Grey Paintings” series that were based on his exploration of color. “1024 Colours” was made in four unique editions, and feature neat ovoids of 1024 different colors painted in a grid at random. His “Grey Paintings” were inspired by the use of shades of the color in his photo-based paintings.

In the 1980s, Richter started to apply a squeegee across the canvas to scrape and smear freshly laid paint to create intuitive paintings that revealed hidden layers, and from the 1990s, the tool was applied both horizontally and vertically to create new possibilities in the final works.

Richter has exhibited all over the world. He had a major exhibition, “Abstract Paintings”, in 1978 at the Stedelijk Van Abbemuseum, Eindhoven, which traveled to the Whitechapel Art Gallery, London. In 1988, the artist was given his first North American retrospective, jointly organized by the Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto, and the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago. The exhibition traveled to Washington and San Francisco. In 2002, a 40-year retrospective of Richter’s work was held at the Museum of Modern Art, New York and in 2011, a major retrospective of the artist’s works opened at the Tate Modern, London and traveled to the Neue Nationalgalerie, Berlin, and the Centre Pompidou, Paris. Richter has also participated in multiple editions of the Venice Biennale and the Documenta in Kassel since 1972.

In 2012, Richter became the most expensive living artist after his work, “Abstraktes Bild (809-4)” (1994), sold for USD33 million in London, a title he held until 2013. Most recently, in February 2015, another “Abstraktes Bild” work, this one painted in 1986, sold for USD37 million, which made him the most expensive living artist
in Europe.

Richter has lived and worked in Cologne since 1983.

In Brief

  • Age: 83
  • Nationality: German
  • Gallery Representation: Marian Goodman Gallery, Scott White Contemporary Art
  • Big Break: In 1968, Richter was commisioned by Siemens AG to make a work to hang in their Milan offices. The result was “Domplatz, Mailand” (1968), at the time the artist’s largest figurative painting, and probably the most accomplished
  • photo-painting by the artist.
  • Most Expensive Work Sold: “Abstraktes Bild”, 1986, oil on canvas, 300.5 x 250.5cm. Price including buyer’s premium: USD46.3 million, Sotheby’s, London, February 2015


Exhibition view of Yayoi Kusama, Ota Fine Arts, Singapore. Photography by Quek Jia Liang. Image courtesy of Ota Fine Arts

Yayoi Kusama

Yayoi Kusama was born in Matsumoto City, Japan in 1929. She moved to the United States in 1957 before moving back to Japan in 1973. Kusama has had a rich and varied career as an artist for over five decades. Her works are in various mediums, including painting, sculpture, performance and installation. Among her most well known works are the “Infinity Net” paintings she began making in the late 1950s, made by adding white arcs onto a darker background on a large canvas. The “Accumulation” sculptures came after, and feature soft-sculptures she made by stitching cotton-stuffed cloth into phallic shapes to attach to furniture and clothing, as well as her trademark polka dot designs in both two- and three-dimensional works. In her time in New York in the 1960s, she was also a performance artist who staged provocative happenings, such as painting people in the nude in her trademark polka dots.

Kusama has exhibited all over the world. In 1993, she represented Japan at the Venice Biennale, for which she created an installation with a mirror room and multiple yellow pumpkin sculptures, the beginnings of similar sculptures covered in uneven black dots. In 1998, a major retrospective of her work made in New York, opened at the Los Angeles County Museum of art before traveling to the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Walker Art Centre in Minneapolis, and the Museum of Contemporary Art in Tokyo.

Notably, from 2011 to 2012, a touring exhibition of her works made its way to Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía in Madrid, the Centre Pompidou in Paris, the Tate Modern in London as well as the Whitney Museum in New York.

In 2012, Kusama collaborated with Louis Vuitton in an ambitious project that saw products such as leather goods and ready-to-wear fashion, in prints featuring Kusama’s signature polka dots – black polka dots against a yellow background, white against black and red against white, which took center stage in window displays of 460 Louis Vuitton stores in 64 countries, as well as seven special concept stores in Paris, London, and Tokyo.


Yayoi Kusama, Shellfish, 1989, screenprint, 53.5 x 46 cm. Image courtesy of the artist and Ota Fine Arts.

In the past decade, Kusama has created immersive installations of walk-in rooms that create disorienting experiences for the viewer. “Fireflies on the Water” (2002) features 150 lights and a pool of water in the center of a room, whose surfaces are all covered with mirrors that give multiple reflections. “Infinity Mirrored Room – The Souls of Millions of Light Years Away” at the David Zwirner Gallery in late 2013 played on a similar concept with 75 colored LED lights that glimmered and pulsed in a small mirrored room. Another recent installation is “The Obliteration Room”, currently at the Queensland Art Gallery, where children add colorful dot stickers to white furniture, objects and surfaces.

Kusama lives and works in Tokyo.

In Brief

  • Age: 86
  • Nationality: Japanese
  • Gallery Representation: Ota Fine Arts, Victoria Miro, David Zwirner Gallery
  • Big Break: Kusama has had a long and successful career, but probably became a global household name when she collaborated with Louis Vuitton in 2012, which included not only a full range of products carrying her signature polka dots, but also the window displays of the luxury fashion house’s stores in over 60 countries.
  • Most Expensive Work Sold: “White No. 28”, 1960, oil on canvas, 147.6 x 111.1cm. Price including buyer’s premium: USD7.1 million, Christie’s, New York, November 2014

Cindy Sherman

Cindy Sherman, Untitled #463, 2007/2008, chromogenic color print, 174.2 x 182.9 cm, edition of 6. Courtesy of the artist and Metro Pictures.

Cindy Sherman

Cindy Sherman is an American artist born in 1954 in Glen Ridge, New Jersey. She graduated from State University College, Buffalo, New York, in 1976. Her photographs have seen her take on multiple roles since her first series, “Untitled Film Stills” in the late 1970s, and continuing with “Centrefolds” (1981), in which she was photographed in an intimate setting as a vulnerable character, and “Fashion” (1983-84), exploring the objectification of women in the still image. The artist is at the center of each photograph, but in different guises, as she plays with identity through dress, transforming her image through hair, make-up, costumes, props and prosthetics.

Sherman has continued to create chameleon-like transformations in performative photographic works, such as in her humorous interpretations of old master paintings as photographs between 1989 and 1990, where she became the portraits’ subjects. Another series of similar works, this time with society portraits in 2008, saw Sherman dressed as aging socialites against moneyed backgrounds. These works poked fun at the trappings of excessive wealth and the obsession with youth and on-the-surface perfection in contemporary society.

While she is most famous for her more light-hearted self-portraits in different roles, she has created a significant number of works that are darker in nature. Beginning in the mid-1980s, her body of work expanded to include the “Fairy Tales” and Disasters” series that show grotesque scenes from which the artist is mostly absent. Other dark series include “Sex and Death” in the late 19080s, photographed using disfigured mannequins, “Pure Horror” in the mid-1990s and “Clowns” in the mid-2000s.


Cindy Sherman, “Untitled Film Stills”, gelatin silver print, 25.4 x 20.3 cm. World auction record for the artist at Christie’s, New York, November 2014. Courtesy Christie’s Images Ltd. 2015.

Sherman has had numerous solo exhibitions at home and abroad since the 1980s. Of particular note is a survey at the Museum of Modern Art in New York in 2012, which showcased more than 170 photographs from the artist’s extensive body of work. The exhibition also included the debut of Sherman’s new photographic murals, which saw her image manipulated digitally against a decorative toile background.

Sherman lives and works in New York.

In Brief

  • Age: 61
  • Nationality: American
  • Gallery Representation: Metro Pictures, Galerie Sprüth Magers
  • Big Break: “Untitled Film Stills”, shown at the landmark performance and video space The Kitchen in New York in 1980, was Sherman’s breakthrough. In these black-and-white photos, the artist took on 69 stereotypical female roles in movies such as the housewife and the femme fatale.
  • Most Expensive Work Sold: “Untitled Film Stills”, 1977, gelatin silver print, 25.4 x 20.3cm.
  • Price including buyer’s premium: USD6.8 million, Christie’s, New York, November 2014


Andreas Gursky, Rhein II, 1999, chromogenic colour print face-mounted to plexiglass, 185.4 x 363.5 cm. World auction record for the artist at Christie’s, New York, November 2011. Courtesy Christie’s Images Ltd. 2015.

Andreas Gursky

Andreas Gursky was born in Leipzig, Germany in 1955. He first studied photography at the Folkwang University of the Arts, formerly Folkwang Academy in Essen. He then attended the Staatliche Kunstakademie, or the State Academy of Art in Düsseldorf and studied under the influential German photographers Hilla and Bernd Becher from 1981 to 1987.

Gursky is known for his large-scale magnified photographs of varied scenes, which can measure up to 2 by 5 meters, reveal the conditions of contemporary times. Usually taken from an elevated vantage point, the artist’s photographic works are known for their stunning and often overwhelming clarity.

In the 1990s, Gursky began experimenting with digital manipulation through shooting the images on chromogenic prints, or c-prints using a large-format camera, then scanning the images for reworking on the computer to create his massive and precise photographs. One of the earliest works made this way was “Paris, Montparnasse” (1993), which showed an inhabited apartment building, and highlighted its uniformed structure and crowdedness in a commentary on the cookie-cutter mold of contemporary urban living. In “Rhein II”, Gursky merged photographs of different parts of the river together to exclude industrial activity, creating an imaginary serene landscape.

In 2011, this work became the most expensive photograph sold at auction.

A recurring theme in Gursky’s work is the effects of capitalism and globalization in contemporary society that put in place invisible systems. Perhaps his most recognizable images from the 1990s are of the Chicago Board of Trade from 1990, which, in contrast to “Rhein II”, shows a flurry of activity reflective of the trading floor’s organized chaos, with traders at the pit surrounded by circular rows of computers. In “99 Cent II Diptychon” (2001), which shows the interior of a 99 Cents Only store, the bright colors red, yellow and orange of rows of boxes were edited to jump out from the photograph, aided by the addition of a mirrored ceiling. The visually impressive work provided a stark reflection of an obsessive consumer culture in contemporary society.

From the mid-2000s, Gursky has worked on numerous projects in Asia, including Japan, Thailand, China and North Korea, among others. “Pyongyang”, a series of photographs of the annual Arirang Festival in North Korea in 2007 presented the heavily directed spectacle to the rest of the world. In taking the festival proceedings such as choreographed mass dances from a great distance, the resulting images look like colorful tapestries, and show the insignificance of the individual within the society.

Gursky has exhibited internationally. A 2001 retrospective at the Museum of Modern Art in New York traveled to Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid, Centre Pompidou, Paris, and Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago.

In recent years, Gursky has also exhibited small photographs atypical to the rest of his oeuvre, such as in “Werke-Works 80-08,” which opened in Kunstmuseen Krefeld in Germany in 2008, and toured to Moderna Museet, Stockholm and Vancouver Art Gallery in 2009.

Gursky lives and works in Düsseldorf.

In Brief

  • Age: 60
  • Nationality: German
  • Gallery Representation: Galerie Sprüth Magers, Mai 36 Galerie, Matthew Marks Gallery
  • Big Break: Gursky acquired worldwide fame with his major solo exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), New York, in 2001.
  • Most Expensive Work Sold: “Rhein II”, 1999, chromogenic print, Plexiglass, 207 x 385.5 x 6.2cm.
  • Price including buyer’s premium: USD4.3 million, Christie’s, New York, November 2011

Story Credits

Text by Nadya Wang

Review: Ferretti Altura 840 Tai He Ban Special Edition

The much-publicized boom in Asian boating is still just on the horizon, but the major European builders and manufacturers realized some time ago that luxury, social, boating has a different function in this part of the world. In the familiar markets of the Mediterranean and the Caribbean, the concept is well understood – owners and friends, or charter guests, take off for a week or more for a spell of sybaritic luxury as far as possible from the madding crowd. In Asia, a boat is most often seen as a business entertainment platform, useful for cocktail receptions, parties, dinners and possibly day-trips, but rarely overnight stays.

This implies a substantially differently genre of boat to those seen moored stern-to in the vieux port at Cannes, or anchored in English Harbour, Antigua. Boats designed specifically for Asia require less outdoor deck space, fewer and less expansive cabins, less galley space, more air-conditioned indoor area, and more space for entertaining.

The people who have taken these new design parameters to heart most enthusiastically are without a doubt the Ferretti Group. Last year they presented Asia with the Ferretti Altura 840 Tai He Ban Special Edition. This year they have taken the re-working of the interior a stage further.


Step on board the Ferretti Yachts 870 Tai He Ban Special Edition from the stern and enjoy the spacious aft deck. Banquette seating, big table, plenty of room. But it’s sizzling here in the tropics, so let’s go straight into the very welcoming air-conditioned interior. Every boat manufacturer likes to tell you about space and light, but here it is not just brochure talk. The saloon of the 870 is a one-piece affair, from the sliding glass doors aft right through to the bridge. It’s a big space, and brilliantly lit by ceiling-to-sofa windows down the full length. If you are hangin’ out here in a secluded anchorage in Double Haven (Hong Kong) or Phang Nga Bay (Thailand), the view is going to be a big part of the onboard experience.

Long sofa seating travels down both sides of the saloon, leading to a proper bar on starboard (applause, please, for a bar in an entertaining area) and straight through into the dining area which is not huge – deliberately – and is separated from the saloon only by a decorative screen feature. And there’s a day head, right there.

The pilot house is ever-so-slightly raised, giving the helmsman an excellent level of visibility, but we are heading down below. Here there are two double cabins, one in the bow and the other to port. Both feature walk-around beds and en suite bathrooms, and in terms of actual measured size, they are almost identical. Which one is the Master and which the Guest is anyone’s guess. There’s also a twin-berth tucked neatly into a remaining corner, with over-and-under bunk beds at right angles to each other. It’s a delightfully quirky arrangement, and definitely a place for the kids, young or old.


The lower deck also features the canapé-sized galley. The description is intentional – this is not a unit designed to turn out 12-course banquets. If you want one of those, you need the 870 ‘standard version’. This is the support base for the bar upstairs, big enough for a fridge full of champagne and a chef turning out the amuse bouches non-stop.

And then, just where you expected to find the full-beam owner’s suite, there is the playroom. Call it a karaoke lounge if you like, call it a cinema, call it a mahjong room. It is designed to be all of the above. The leather paneled walls, along with the striking and thoroughly tasteful Fendi upholstery, exude richness and warmth, making this a very unique sea-going ‘den’. The high end video and AV systems are complemented by the color-pulsed lighting system to make this a perfect party pad. Plus, of course, you can switch off all the fun stuff if you must, and this becomes a meeting room or conference center, or anything else serious that you might have in mind.

Lastly, head all the way upstairs to the flybridge. ‘Top decks’ are popular in Asia. This is where you get best view when cruising the coast on a glorious summer’s day, and where you get the wind-in-the-hair look (just like in the brochure). There’s also plenty of room for lounging up here, as well as storage space for the tender. Best of all, to beat the searing rays of the midday sun, is the retractable sunroof; now you see it, now you don’t.


When it comes to designing for the Asia market, Ferretti seem to try harder than most. We like people that listen: if they don’t, we might as well be writing in the dark. Ferretti are listening to the market, to the owners and prospective owners, to the weather forecast and even to the media! Maybe being owned by Weichai Holdings has something to do with it. The 870 Tai He Ban is a class act; handsomely designed to purpose, and delivered with proper Italian style, quality and panache. It is a boat that deserves to be a real winner in Asia.



Story Credits

Text and Photography By Guy Nowell

Jack Ma

China now has more billionaires than US

Jack Ma

The number of billionaires in China has overtaken that of the United States for the first time, an annual survey said Thursday, despite slowing growth in the world’s second-largest economy.

Communist-ruled China now has 596 billionaires, up a “staggering” 242 over the last year, Shanghai-based luxury magazine publisher Hurun Report said, surpassing the 537 Americans.

“Despite the slowdown in the economy, China’s richest have defied gravity, recording their best year ever,” Hurun Report Chairman Rupert Hoogewerf said in a statement.

Real estate and entertainment magnate Wang Jianlin dethroned founder of e-commerce giant Alibaba Jack Ma as the country’s richest person, Hurun’s annual wealth ranking showed.

Wang Jianlin

Wang, who founded conglomerate Wanda, saw his fortune jump more than 50% to $34.4 billion, helped by a surge in the stock price of a listed unit.

Wang is known outside China for a string of overseas acquisitions including the organiser of Ironman extreme endurance contests, Swiss sports marketing group Infront, and a stake in football club Atletico Madrid.

He burst into the spotlight in 2012 by buying US cinema chain AMC Entertainment for $2.6 billion.

Zong Qinghou

Wang took the top spot back from Ma, executive chairman of Alibaba, because of a collapse in the Internet company’s New York-quoted shares, which were the world’s biggest initial public offering when it listed last year. Ma’s wealth still stands at $22.7 billion.

Beverage tycoon Zong Qinghou of Wahaha remained in third place with just over $21 billion while Pony Ma, founder of Internet giant Tencent which operates popular messaging app WeChat, took fourth place with a little under $19 billion.

Lei Jun

Lei Jun of smartphone maker Xiaomi, which is seeking to challenge Apple, jumped 5 places to fifth by doubling his wealth to more $14 billion.

Yan Hao of road builder China Pacific Construction was sixth while the founder of search engine giant Baidu, Robin Li, dropped to seventh amid worries over his company’s huge spending to expand its business.

Baidu CEO Robin Li

Sheraton Chuzhou Hotel

First Sheraton Hotel opens for business in Chuzhou

Sheraton Chuzhou Hotel

Starwood Hotels & Resorts recently announced its debut in Chuzhou, a city in Anhui Province, China, with the opening of Sheraton Chuzhou Hotel.

The hotel features 348 contemporary rooms and suites, featuring all of the brand’s signature amenities and a wide range of on-property facilities.


Chuzhou is situated in the east of China in the Anhui Province and the site for the new hotel was selected to ensure that visitors, whether traveling for business or pleasure are close to both the central business district and to historic sites such as Zhu Yuanzhang’s imperial tomb.

The Sheraton Chuzhou Hotel

“The opening of the first Sheraton hotel in Chuzhou underscores Starwood’s continued commitment to aggressively expanding its footprint in the region and builds on the Sheraton brand’s long legacy as a first-mover in markets across China and Asia Pacific,” said Vincent Ong, Senior Brand Director, Asia Pacific Brand Management, Starwood Hotels & Resorts.

Sheraton Chuzhou Hotel Shine Spa

As well as a fitness center, the hotel offers an indoor pool, spa and two restaurants.

Norwegian Cruise Line cruise ship

Norwegian Cruise Line designs Chinese ship

Norwegian Cruise Line cruise ship

 is building its first ship completely customized for the Chinese market.

The ship will feature accommodations, cuisine and onboard experiences that cater to the unique vacation preferences of Chinese guests, CEO Frank Del Rio announced yesterday during the CruiseWorld China summit.

The vessel will be the second of Norwegian Cruise Line’s Breakaway Plus class and will have a capacity of 4,200 guests. Chinese guests will be able to experience fine Mandarin, Cantonese and Continental dining and various entertainment options.

Additional details, including the ship’s name, homeport, accommodations, dining and entertainment will be shared in the coming months.

brave men bridge

China’s new glass bridge tests courage of tourists

brave men bridge

China’s first glass suspension bridge, which dangles 180 metres (594 feet) over a canyon in the central Hunan province, has terrified thousands of visitors since opening two weeks ago.

“I’m afraid to look down. I can only look straight ahead,” said one young woman crossing the 300-metre long structure.

Visitors were apparently not put off the experience despite news this week of cracks appearing on a glass walkway over a canyon in nearby Henan province, reportedly because someone dropped a stainless steel cup on it. Authorities insisted it was still safe.

China new glass bridge

Visitors flocked to the Hunan glass bridge, in a scenic area of Pingjiang county, where officials were forced to impose a cap of 10,000 people a day during recent holidays.

The glass-bottomed bridge, which replaced a wooden walkway, opened on September 24 — just in time for China’s week-long National Day holiday.

China first glass suspension bridge

As dozens of people trudged across the bridge it shook underfoot and photos posted online showed some visitors kneeling or crouching on the transparent surface, too scared to move.

The structure is made from two layers of hardened glass with a total thickness of 24 millimetres (0.9 inches), according to state media.

1921 gucci menu

Gucci Restaurant Opens in Shanghai

1921 gucci menu

Gucci recently opened its first full-service restaurant in Shanghai, China.

With this new culinary destination, called the “1921 Gucci Café,” Gucci is paying tribute to its history, referencing the year of the label’s foundation.

Gucci has chosen one of Shanghai’s most popular commercial avenues for its first restaurant. Located on the fourth floor of the IAPM luxury shopping mall on Huaihai Lu, the 1921 Gucci Café took two years to complete and is accessible by means of an elevator from the Gucci store in the mall.

Epicureans will step into a décor that perfectly reflects the iconic brand’s style. With elegantly done-up interiors in gold shades and full of velvet, every inch of the place radiates Gucci style; the 1921 Gucci logo is stamped on everything from menus to cutlery to napkins.

Thousands of miles from its native land, Gucci is nonetheless sticking to its roots when it comes to the food. The menu is high on Italian cuisine but the restaurant offers a wide range of options to satiate foodie cravings.

Chinese gourmands will thus have the chance to experience authentic bruschetta, made with marinated tomatoes, garlic and basil.

The pasta options are an obvious highlight, especially the spaghetti with mussels, urchins and calamari. Prices start at 150 yuan for a two-course lunch, 300 yuan at dinner (just under $50).

Although 1921 Gucci Café is the brand’s first full-service restaurant, there is a Gucci-themed cafe in Florence attached to the Gucci museum, which opened in 2011 to celebrate the label’s 90th anniversary. 

Gucci Museo Caffe Restaurant

First Six Senses resort opens in Chengdu, China

Six Senses Qing Cheng Mountain

Six Senses Hotels Resorts Spas, has opened a new property in the Qing Cheng Mountains in Chengdu province, China.

Six Senses Qing Cheng Mountain spa

Set at the gateway to the UNESCO World Heritage & Natural Cultural site at Dujiangyan, the Six Senses Qing Cheng Mountain offers 113 guest rooms and suites ranging from semi-detached suites in duplex villas with balconies and verandas, to courtyard suites, and garden and pool villas.

Six Senses Qing Cheng Mountain bedroom

A collection of four suites may open on to a central courtyard, enabling them to be individually occupied or grouped into a private community compound for friends and family.

Read More @ adelto.co.uk

Six Senses Qing Cheng Mountain bathroomSix Senses Qing Cheng Mountain suite Six Senses Qing Cheng Mountain bar  Six Senses Qing Cheng Mountain bridge

Remy Martin Connected Bottle

Remy Martin to export ‘smart’ cognac to China

Remy Martin Connected Bottle

Chinese consumers concerned about counterfeit cognac will soon be able to verify the authenticity of a bottle of Remy Martin via their cellphone.

The “smart” bottle of Remy Martin Club Connected Cognac, sold only in China, will be available in the coming months in “nightclubs in three big Chinese cities”, said Florence Puech, a spokeswoman for the firm.


Consumers can download a special app onto their smartphones, developed in partnership with Selinko — a technology company — which will communicate with a chip in the bottle cap.

The technology will allow them to ensure the bottle has never been opened as well as other information about its content.

It also has a marketing component, allowing cognac connoisseurs to join a fidelity programme.

China is one of Remy Martin’s key markets, along with the United States. French people do not consume a lot of cognac and most of the liquor produced in the country is exported.

Taylor Swift

Taylor Swift creating fashion line for Chinese market

Taylor Swift

JD.com has announced that it will soon be offering a new fashion line that US singer Taylor Swift has designed especially for the Chinese market.

The line will include dresses, sweatshirts and tops that the company says will be high-quality and will be available next month on JD.com.

Created by Swift with Heritage66 Company, which focuses specifically on US artists looking to expand their reach in China, it will be an exclusive to the Chinese market and was designed with local consumers in mind.

JD.com is to be the first authorized seller of Taylor Swift merchandise in China via its new platform “U.S. Mall,” through which Chinese consumers wil be able to buy goods from US brands.

shanghai tower China

Shanghai Tower nears completion

shanghai tower China

The Shanghai Tower, the tallest building in China and the second tallest in the world, is nearing completion.

Located in the Pudong financial district, the 632m tower composed of 128 floors is a striking addition to the Shanghai landscape.


Composed of a tapering outer skin of glass and steel that wraps itself around the building’s circular core, Gensler, the American firm behind the design, claims this twisting shape reduces wind load on the building by 24%, thus saving approximately $58 million in steel and structure costs.

While still dwarfed by the 829.2m Burj Khalifa in Dubai, Shanghai Tower is now Asia’s tallest skyscraper and a bold statement about the country’s economic prosperity going forward in the 21st century.

A soft opening of Shanghai Tower has seen some tenants allowed into the building to conduct interior construction. An official public opening has yet to be announced but is expected sometime this autumn.

bordeaux wine

China recognises ‘Bordeaux’

bordeaux wine

After a four-year struggle, France has convinced China to recognise “Bordeaux” as a brand in a bid to combat counterfeit wines.

France has been in talks with China since 2011 to recognise the Bordeaux “appellation” — a legally defined and protected geographical marker used to identify where grapes are grown.


China’s recognition, announced Tuesday on the first of a three-day visit by Prime Minister Li Keqiang — was a “historic advance” in the battle to stop fake Bordeaux wines being sold in Asia.

The appellations system “promotes quality productions rooted in our territory,” the agricultural ministry said in a statement.

The two countries are discussing around 100 geographical labels from both countries as part of wide-ranging trade talks.

bordeaux wine map

Armani Casa project Beijing

Armani to design luxury residences in Beijing

Armani Casa project Beijing

Armani Casa has signed a deal with the Smart Hero Group to develop a residential project in Beijing, Women’s Wear Daily (WWD) reports.

Architect Ma Yansong has been signed up to design an eco building comprising several apartments, with Armani creating the amenities and common areas.

Armani Casa project Beijing China

“I’m very happy to collaborate on the development of this complex in Beijing, one of the most charming cities in the world,” Giorgio Armani told the publication. “The Chinese concept of ‘Union of Nature and Man’ perfectly fits the aesthetic I developed for Armani/Casa, which constantly aspires at creating a sense of harmony inside the indoor spaces while respecting their natural context.”

The brand has previously worked on projects including the Century Spire complex in Makati, Philippines and the World Towers in Mumbai.

Alibaba.com advertising

China’s Alibaba launches Internet bank

Alibaba.com advertising

Chinese e-commerce behemoth Alibaba on Thursday launched an Internet bank aimed at serving small businesses which often struggle to obtain credit from large banks.

MYbank, which is 30% owned by Alibaba-linked Ant Financial Services Group, will offer loans of up to 5 million yuan ($800,000).

The bank, based in Hangzhou where Alibaba is headquartered, added it will serve “small businesses, individual consumers and rural users.”

Alibaba completed the world’s biggest IPO last September with a listing on the New York Stock Exchange that raked in $25 billion and made founder Jack Ma one of China’s richest men.