Rewind: Our favourite SS19 collections from Tokyo Fashion Week 2019

Toyko Fashion Week 2019 kicked off this Monday, much to the delight of those  who enjoy the wacky, weird and boundary-breaking styles of the modern garment industry. With a reputation for creating bold and extravagant runways, the Summer / Spring show was all about outré, outstanding fashion that will no doubt prove to be valuable additions to your wardrobe this summer.


Local Tokyo designer Mari Odaka unleashed her ninth collection, which consisted of crocheted knitwear summer dresses and cool cow-boyish two pieces. The contrasting beiges and reds pair strongly with each other ensuring bold statement pieces, but while the patterns themselves are unique, they are subtle enough to be worn during the day as well. Malamute‘s sophisticated collection is appropriate to wear wherever and whenever.


If anyone could make ragamuffin chic, it’s designer  Kotoha Yokozawa. Her eponymous brand, kotohayokozawa, aims to explore the relationship between touch and texture, translates to uneven patterns, unique stitchings and nostalgic children’s pop-art in her clothing line. Using mostly soft colours, the collection captures a rare-yet-successful mixture of calmness and chaos.

tiit Tokyo

Designers Sho Iwata and Hiroshi Takizawa of tiit tokyo have created a rather darling collection for SS19. With a clear focus on such natural hues as blue and green, the pieces feature beautiful effects from sheer lace to feminine-plaids (who would have thought that was possible?) and of course, everyone’s favourite come-back, the belt-bag. 

Jenny Fax

Taiwanese designer Shueh Jen-Fang of Jenny Fax is the winner of our favourite SS19 collection to come out of Tokyo Fashion Week. In fact, we’ve been counting down the days until Spring so we could finally let it escape from our closets. A series clearly inspired by the retro-style of ’80s, the range is absolutely electric with its outrageous proportions, neon colours and fresh take at how a belly-button should stand out.

Text:Bailey Atkinson


Spring / Summer 2019: Turn up the heat with these flirtatiously femme fads

Dazzling hues, arresting patterns and bold prints – the haute couture world celebrates the emergence of spring with a seemingly endless array of divine designs. From subtly sophisticated power suits and chic silk skirts to avant-garde accessories and apparel, from ’60s-era flared trousers and ’80s geometric patterns to metallic Space Age inspirations, this season’s collections deftly balance every imaginable style in a whirlwind of fads, fabrics and flourishes. Onwards, then, to the top looks of Spring / Summer 2019…




Turning the old adage that beige is boring completely on its head, chief creative officer Riccardo Tisci has completely transformed this once -blasé shade into the very cutting edge of refined haute couture this season. Deftly divided into three separate sections – casual, sophisticated and evening wear – these creations were craf ted solely with the modern woman in mind. From posh pencil pants and square-shouldered suit jackets to playful polka dots and bold animal prints, Tisci’s masterful deployment of textures, tones and fabrics will surely find favour with haute couture-minded madames the world over, no matter what the occasion.



In what was to be his final collection for Chanel, its late creative director Karl Lagerfeld transported his audience to the sun-dappled beachside. With a solid emphasis on flirtatious fun, his barefoot models pranced – sandals firmly in hand – down the catwalk in a flurry of ruffles, silky silhouettes and a plethora of patterns, with a hip handbag or two thrown in for good measure. The highlight of the show, though, was undoubtedly the svelte showcase of Chanel’s signature tweed in the form of suit jackets, gloves and overcoats, all cut in contemporary fashion and burnished in bold hues of pink, yellow and blue.


There seems to be no expiration date for some good old-fashioned ’60s hippie chic, at least as far as Chloé’s Natacha Ramsay-Levi is concer ned. Drawing inspiration from the rich cultural heritage of Morocco and Ibiza, her sophomore Spring / Summer collection for the maison pays tribute to the festival going fashionista of the Flower Power era with a rich catalogue of Boho-esque flared trousers, kaf tan gowns, figure-hugging jump suits, and ethnic-printed silk scarves and shirts. A veritable treasure trove of talismanic accessories – from tasselled earrings and rope belts to cuff bracelets and oversized pendant necklaces – rounds out the line’s refined New Age vibe.


Creative director Maria Grazia Chiuri explores the concept of freedom in a series of eye-popping creations inspired by the world of modern dance for Dior. Gone are the movement-restricting corsets and stiff fabrics that were the benchmarks of previous seasons. Instead, there’s a new element of playfulness, be it the sheer chiffons and tulles that allow an enticing glimpse of skin or the flowy, figure-hiding overcoats and sweaters that leave you wanting more. As a final flourish, ballerina-esque flats and leotard-inspired garments have been interwoven throughout, fulfilling Chiuri’s mission to “speak about dance with a different point of view, to speak about freedom”.


Embracing the urban concrete jungle in which we live, Fendi’s recently passed and much-mourned creative director Karl Lagerfeld turned it on its head, using a minimalist palette of sage, cognac, burgundy, tangerine and white to create a collection that is brilliant in its down to-earth appeal. Though ostensibly masculine in shape, the attires are deliberately softened by a touch of femininity through gathered patch pockets, ruched sleeves, feminine belts, floral prints and even bib collars. And while the dresses themselves are strictly utilitarian, the accessories – such as the legendary Baguette bag from the ’90s that makes a reappearance with sequin embellishments – give them an unmistakably signature Fendi flamboyance.


Building on her well-known penchant for creating entire collections around one singularly compelling individual, Givenchy creative director Clare Waight-Keller has once again plumbed the depths of historical archives to present a new line inspired by Annemarie Schwarzenbach, an early 20th-century bisexual Swiss journalist and photographer with a penchant for cross-dressing. On a mission to “collide the codes” of menswear and women’s apparel, she has embraced Schwarzenbach’s gender fluidity to the fullest, balancing the feminine – swishing floor-length gowns, shimmering tassels and crystal accents – with distinctly masculine tuxedo jackets, trenches and trousers. The verdict? A barrierbreaking success.


Eschewing the outré in favour of clean lines and light tones, French haute couture maison Hermès has wholly embraced the spirit of summer with an array of decidedly sporty creations. In place of the equine designs that dominated last season’s catwalks, this year’s focus is more in line with beach chic, with strappy sandals, peek-a-boo bralettes and shoulder-baring shirts all in play. As usual, the brand’s iconic orange hue was very much in evidence, whether accenting a hemline or dominating across a sailing coat. Of particular note, though, is the seamless transformation of Hermès’ sturdier leather designs into comfortable, breathable summery garments and accessories that still retain an aura of casual sophistication while taking ‘athleisure’ wear to new heights.

Text: Tenzing Thondup and Suchetana Mukhopadhyay

Happy New Year 2019!

Happy New Year 2019!

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year 2019

Merry Christmas

Editors’ Picks: Our favourite dresses from the Emmys 2018 red carpet

The biggest names in TV stardom turned up dressed to the nines for last week’s 70th Primetime Emmy Awards. Nominees, presenters and their guests alike all put their best feet – and wardrobes – forward for the small screen’s biggest night of the year. Some fell short of their mark, but most set the fashion bar very, very high, indeed. Here are some dresses that outshone the rest on the Emmys 2018 red carpet.

Our favourite dresses from the Emmys 2018 Red Carpet

Pristine whites were the shade of choice for many a TV celeb walking the Emmys 2018 Red Carpet. Spanish actress Penelope Cruz channeled vintage Hollywood glam in a gorgeous sleeveless A-line ballgown by Chanel. The Crown‘s Claire Foy, meanwhile, opted for a timelessly elegant shin-length sheath dress adorned simply with a bow on its back.

Pretty pinks seemed to be back in favour, with Stranger Things’ Millie Bobby Brown dressed in an adorably age-appropriate off-shoulder dress from Calvin Klein by Appointment, whose cuteness was raised considerably by the rose prints that dominated the garment. There was nothing innocent about Thandie Newton’s sultry look, however. She upped the sex factor of the entire Emmys 2018 Red Carpet with a figure-hugging, bubblegum prink one-shoulder gown by Brandon Maxwell.

Other bold hues were also very much in evidence, with This is Us‘ Mandy Moore opting for a custom-made Rodante dress in an unusual amber shade. For Michelle Dockery, who starred as Lady Mary Crawley in the acclaimed British TV show Downton Abbey, the absolutely right choice was a lovely, airy blue tulle number by Caroline Herrera.


Pastel Planet: Our roundup of the five most colourful places on earth

From multi-coloured lamp-lit streets of Hoi An to a beautiful blue city in Morocco, here’s our countdown of the top five most colourful places in the world.

colourful places

 Chefchaouen, Morocco

Every street and building in Chefchaouen in Morocco is coloured in some shade of blue, as in Islamic culture, blue symbolises wealth and happiness. The city was closed off to foreigners for 500 years, but now it welcomes travellers into its blue paradise with open arms. Blue is indeed the warmest colour here as it reflects the importance of the nearby Ras el-Maa Waterfall from where citizens get their drinking water.

colourful places

Hoi An, Vietnam

While Hoi An is romantic with its 18th century wooden buildings, street food and narrow alleys, the true highlight is the beautiful coloured lanterns that line every street. Perfectly blending elements of Chinese, Japanese and Vietnamese cultures, the lanterns and lamps of every size, shape and colour hang over the streets, illuminating the special rustic charm that characterise Hoi An.

colourful places

Jaipur, India

No list of colourful places can be complete without featuring Jaipur, the Pink City of India. All forts and historical buildings in this ancient city are painted with a terracotta pink colour, which is especially produced from calcium oxide and is extremely durable in the arid desert conditions of Jaipur. What was originally a welcoming gesture by Maharaja Sawai Ram Singh II to please British monarch Prince Albert in 1876 still continues to draw throngs of guests every year to this desert city.

colourful places

Painted Desert, Arizona, the US

It’s difficult to imagine deserts as colourful places, but the Painted Desert in Arizona is a multi-coloured exception to the rule. Deriving its name for the multitude of colours like lavender, orange and pink, it is a vast expanse of hillocks and buttes that stretch for over 160 miles. This massive sandstone formation is also brushed in places with brick red and golden yellow, which changes colours during different times of the year.

colourful places

Bo Kaap, Cape Town, South Africa

Bo Kaap in Cape Town, South Africa, is one of the trendiest neighbourhoods with lots of restaurants and bars. What stands out, however, is its rows of coloured houses. The houses are a mix of Cape Dutch and Georgian architecture, standing in distinctive multi-coloured rows on cobbled roads. Of all the other colourful places on this list, Bo Kaap’s history is perhaps the most inspiring. All the houses in this neighbourhood were originally white, but when slaves were allowed to buy their own houses, they coloured them in the brightest of hues to mark their freedom of expression.

If all these colourful destinations have you daydreaming, click here to plan your next vacay with Flight Centre.

Text: Suchetana Mukhopadhyay

Terrace Tapas by La Rambla: When sunshine and Spanish flavours beckon

Imagine sipping a cool cocktail while nibbling on some delicious hors d’oeuvre and soaking in the sweeping views of Victoria Harbour. Pure bliss, right? Well, that’s exactly what Spanish cuisinary La Rambla by Catalunya offers to Hongkongers this summer. No doubt eager to infuse a bit of laidback al-fresco-style dining at the heart of the bustling ifc mall, La Rambla has just introduced a new terrace tapas menu curated by Chef Ferran Tadeo.

La Rambla

Boasting rich Spanish flavours, the all-new Terrace Tapas menu incorporates umami flavours in Surtido de Montaditos, Suckling Pig & Foie Sliders and Escalivada Coca. A few more seasonal options include amón Croquettas and Chorizo Al Josper & Padron Pepper served on house-baked baguette.

La Rambla

Of course, lounging on the terrace can only be fully appreciated with a glass of cocktail in hand. Bearing this universal law in mind, La Rambla has on offer a range of summer-suitable signature drinks. The selection comprises Botanical Summer Garden, Negrambla, and Catalan Spritz, among others. Gin drinkers would be particularly delighted, with over 30 choices available, including a Gin Volcanic from Spain.

La Rambla

Before you ramble in the direction of La Rambla though, keep in mind that it’s a regular haunt for office-goers looking to down a few after-work drinks, so it’s probably a wise idea to book in advance. Also the happy hours are from 3 to 7pm, so that’s when it gets really crowded around that time. Our suggestion? Go early and soak in the good life!

La Rambla by Catalunya
3071-73 level 3, ifc mall
Central, Hong Kong
Telephone: (852) 2661 1161

 Text: Suchetana Mukhopadhyay

Barcelona’s top chefs woo with modern Spanish cuisine at Rustico

Two of Spain’s top social media chefs Jérôme Quilbeuf and Miquel Antoja touched down in Hong Kong this month, courtesy of the summer showcase at Rustico, the rather-quaint Spanish restaurant tucked away in Lai Chi Kok, Kowloon.  

Guest chefs Jérôme Quilbeuf and Miquel Antoj

Transforming Rustico into a fine dining mecca from 11-14 June, Chef Jérôme and Miquel’s four-hand, seven-course tasting dinner menu, Journey through modern Spanish cuisine, showcased signature items from famous Barcelona restaurants Nonna Maria and 130 Restaurant.

The culinary journey started off with Iberian ham croquettes – a crispy affair made special by truffle crème. The next appetiser – a mini version of Nonna Maria’s mini seafood pizza, complete with a Nonna Maria tiny pizza box – was extremely easy both on the palate and on the eyes, so much so that we can safely declare it to be the most Instagram-worthy dish of the seven courses.

Nonna Maria-style mini pizza paella at Rustico

The next two courses, a sea bream ceviche with strawberries, sweetcorn and pumpkin, and a salad of hearts of lettuce with Romesco sauce were light and flavourful, but the dish that created a lasting impression on us was the duck consommé with foie gras Kombu seaweed and plums, thanks to its delicate and beautifully balanced consommé. The fresh scallop in shell and the juicy red prawn rice did not disappoint either, but were overshadowed by the next course – a beautifully braised beef cheek with Pedro Ximenez wine and apple coca. The melting-in-the-mouth-meat deservingly won its place as the champion of the evening.

Blanc almond manger, Mediterranean Sea water ice-cream

The foodtastic journey reached a perfect conclusion with not one but two desserts – the Blanc almond manger with Mediterranean Sea water ice-cream and a luscious grand finale titled ‘Textures of Chocolate, Barcelona 2018’.  

For food-enthusiasts who have missed the culinary journey so far, there’s still good news! From 15 to 25 June, Rustico returns to its rustic roots to showcase the celebrity chefs’ ten trendy tapas specialities, including the Nonna Maria-style mini pizza paella (HK$118), Iberian ham croquettes with truffle crème (HK$25) and the ever-popular red prawn tartare with strawberries (HK$108). Also on offer is a range of Spanish dessert specialities like pina colada (HK$70) and red fruit meringue (HK$70).

Prawn tartare with strawberries

Address: Shop G01, G/F, D2 Place ONE, 9 Cheung Yee Street, Lai Chi Kok, Kowloon
Reservations: (852) 2743-4511 or

Text: Suchetana Mukhopadhyay

Top Five Staycations in Hong Kong: Get away while staying in

If you are hard-pressed for time to take that beach vacation to Koh Samui, look no further than the many beaches in our own city. With our top five staycations in Hong Kong, there’s really no easier way to recuperate your holiday-deprived souls.

Silvermine Beach Resort

Beachside Blue Horizon Café at Silvermine Beach Resort

Unwind at one of Hong Kong’s only true beach hotel. Complete with Saturday barbecue dinners, alfresco style dining, luxurious lounges, boat and bicycle rentals, Silvermine Beach Resort is ideal for transporting you to the beaches of Phuket or Bali in a mere 30-min ferry ride from Central!

D.D.2 Lot 648, Silvermine Bay, Mui Wo, Lantau Island
+852 6810 0111,

Auberge Discovery Bay

Ocean Front Suite at Auberge Discovery Bay

Situated in the lap of nature, this island oasis on Discovery Bay brings the best of nature’s beauty and state-of-the-art facilities to its guests. Enjoy a staycation in Auberge’s many sea-facing spacious rooms or suites that offer panoramic views of South China Sea. Auberge Discovery Bay is also completely smoke-free, making it the perfect place to soak in pure oxygen.

88 Siena Avenue, Discovery Bay, Lantau Island
+852 2295 8288,

Four Seasons Hotel Hong Kong

Imperial Suite at Four Seasons Hong Kong

When it comes to luxurious staycations, Hongkongers are literally spoilt for choice by the myriad luxury hotels in town. Among these, Four Seasons Hong Kong would be an obvious choice for couples looking to ‘up’ their wellness quotient. With a wide range of vegetarian, gluten-free and sustainably-sourced seafood options, and one of the world’s best five-star spas to boot, Four Seasons is the place to visit all seasons for a weekend of holistic makeover and rejuvenation.

8 Finance Street, Central
+852 3196 8888,

Grand Hyatt Hong Kong

Swimming pool at Grand Hyatt HK

Time-starved people can also explore the rather aptly named Escape 24 staycation package at Grand Hyatt Hong Kong. Enjoy a 24-hours stay in the Grand Deluxe Harbour Room and access to an outdoor heated pool and a fitness centre in this package that’s only available to HKID holders. Complimentary parking for one vehicle per stay is also included in this offer. We recommend this for an anniversary or birthday getaway for the complimentary celebration cake, the chocolates and strawberries, and, of course, the champagne.

Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre, 1 Harbour Road, Wan Chai
+852 2588 1234,

Hullet House

Tai O Suite at Hullett House

Looking to imbibe a bit of heritage on one of your staycations? Look no further than Harbour Plaza’s colonial-style heritage hotel Hullet House, housed in the former Marine Police Headquarters, one of the oldest surviving government buildings in Hong Kong dating back to 1881. In keeping with their old-world charm, the hotel offers heritage tours within its history-laden premises, covering spots like pigeon courtyard, Indian police rest, mariners’ rest and old horse stables.

1881 Heritage, 2A Canton Rd, Tsim Sha Tsui
+852 3988 0000,

Text: Suchetana Mukhopadhyay

E=MusiC²: Einstein’s favourite fiddle goes under the gavel

Einstein's violin

Apart from single-mindedly working out how the universe works, it seems that Albert Einstein wasn’t averse to banging out a Mozart sonata on the fiddle whenever inspiration eluded him. Recently, some 63 years after the eccentric genius died, the very violin with which he wooed his Mrs – she was well partial to a bit of Wolfgang Amadeus apparently – came up for auction at Bonhams in New York. It eventually sold for US$516,500, five times more than the original estimate.

Given the staggering sum it went for, it’s perhaps not surprising that the violin – which Albert himself referred to as “Lina” – has outdone his telescope (previously sold for US$432,500) and his pocket watch (US$352,054) to become the most valuable item of Einstein memorabilia ever sold (other than his scientific documents).

The violin was made by Oscar Steger, a cabinetmaker and a member of the Harrisburg Symphony Orchestra, and gifted to Einstein in 1933. It bears the inscription “the Worlds [sic] Greatest Scientist Profesior [sic]” and was said to travel everywhere that Albert went.