theW+ Architectural Tours with Hogan: Design Institute

Hong Kong’s latest architectural renaissance jump-started within the educational sector in 2010 with the iconic, Hong Kong Design Institute aka. the HKDI located in Tseung Kwan O.This highly original building was first conceptualized less than 10 years ago after it won first place in an ideas competition for the non-profit public school devoted to all things Design. Since it was built, construction of other design schools with similarly iconic avant-garde architectures in the city followed, all authored by award winning and globally recognized architects such as Daniel Libeskind for the Run Run Shaw Media Centre (2011) and Zaha Hadid for her “Innovation” Tower (2014) at CUHK’s Kowloon campus.

Pedestrians can access the vertical campus on many levels.

The difference between the Hadid and Libeskind campuses and the HKDI, is that HKDI’s winning architects don’t have the starchitect status nor long building history of the other two. Named CAAU (Codelfy & Associes Architectes Urbanistes), the Lille and Paris, France based studios, have basically hit jackpot with this winning project. At 42,000m2 large, HKDI is the first ever completed building within their company portfolio, and it’s a beautiful and thoughtful one at that… everything works spatially and volume-wise, with no gimmicky forms or odd cheap finishes.

And after walking around the school’s site two weeks ago, I was completely convinced that CAAU could not have done a better job with the HKDI, which is a feat in itself considering Hong Kong’s complicated construction process (especially with all the permits to build anything a-traditional here.)

Internal streets on many levels connect the building with surrounding environments.

HKDI, which can house up to 4,000 students, is most notable for its four tree-tower trunks clad in a lattice steel diamond shaped-structure holding up an awe-inspiring glass box raised 7-storeys high. Dubbed the “White Sheet”, the architects saw this sheet as a “metaphorical presentation of creativity”, floating in air, connecting all other parts of the campus’ multidisciplinary functions, many meters above ground.

The glass box above is the metaphorical ‘White Sheet’ of Creativity. Photographed by Lightseed Studio.

The otherwise flat site, has been made more dynamic with all auditoriums, dining, and gallery functions placed within an artificial plinth on the ground, sandwiching the towers housing the classrooms, with the glass box on top holding other shared functions like study areas and the main library (with a view.)

Towers clad in lattice steel structure.

From a detail standpoint, this building is far superior structurally, materially, and finishes-wise, than the other buildings in Hong Kong of its ilk by far more seasoned architects. The 60m long escalator which takes students from ground level to the glass box, works well enough exactly how it was intended to work, and the external lattice structure which was constructed on site (not-prefabricated at all) is the the building’s overall design signature which looks neat with no water rust on the paint and with very clean joint details amongst all its structural parts. It still looks new after so many years.

While CAAU was the design architect, the project was made possible with collaboration with P&T Group, the local architects who designed our last Architectural tour stop, The Velodrome. Ove Arup Hong Kong is the project’s structural engineering team (also same with the Velodrome). The HKDI was first established in 2002, and houses departments for Design, Fashion/Textile, Printing/ Digital Media, and Multimedia + Internet Technology.

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Glass canopy brings light in while protecting interior open spaces from the elements.

Latticework structure of the HKDI built on site looks as good as new.

There are very elegant moments here when the tree trunk goes beyond the glass box above. (It could have gone horribly wrong, but it didn’t.)

So many sublime moments to connect and contemplate.

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Our Architectural Tour at the Hong Kong Hong Kong Design Institute was made possible through partnership with Hogan Autumn / Winter 2014’s Simon Holloway Collection for Casual Business. For three decades, Hogan has provided comfort and style for gentlemen everywhere. These days a plugged-in and fast paced society has changed the way we travel, choosing instead destinations that allow us to discover, explore, and document our creative inspiration. For smart shoes that allow guys like us to negotiate, network, and explore the world from day to evening, Hogan is there.

WEAR Hogan / VISIT Hong Kong Design Institute . 3 King Ling Road, Tseung Kwan O, NT HK . Tiu Keng Leng MTR Station Exit A2 . T: +852-39282994 / DESIGN CAAU Codelfy & Associates Architects Urban Planners / STYLE PHOTOGRAPHY Ken Wu - Lightseed Studio

JJ.

theW+ Architectural Tours with Hogan: The Velodrome

One of the biggest trends (thankfully) that has arrived to Hong Kong within the last 4-5 years, is the embrace by a large percentage of the city’s population towards cycling. A visible sign of its trendy popularity, recreational cyclists are now everywhere to be seen in the city, but much more so at night when it’s so much safer to avoid the city’s smoggy roads and dangerous traffic.  Heck, I’m even surprised the cycling trend has caught on in the first place! Even on Facebook, the non-profit Hong Kong Cycling Alliance Group and Fan Pages attract close to 5,000 members and counting, aimed at forging a harmonious relationship between the city and the city’s bikers through safety education programmes and pro-urban cycling advocacy. 

In the suburbs of Tseung Kwan O, we find the newest sign of cycling’s popularity with this year’s unveiling of one of the the region’s first official indoor velodromes designed specifically for the competitive Hong Kong Cycling Team and all bike enthusiasts alike.

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The beautiful yet sculpturally iconic Hong Kong Velodrome designed by P&T Group and Ove Arup, aims to bring cycling’s competitive games to this city. Costing about HK$600 million to construct in total, the building is programmatically effective, hosting the main 250-metre cycling track, plus spaces for multi-purpose sporting use, a restaurant, and a pro-bicycle shop, while also being highly sustainable. Water harvesting, photovoltaic panels plus solar panels on the roof, generate heat and energy savings.

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The most distinctive feature of the Hong Kong Velodrome (my favorite feature actually) are the building’s elliptical form and ribbed roof apparently inspired by the profile of a bicycle helmet. The zig-zagging ridges of the building’s crown gives the form a sense of lightness and height meant to reduce the overall bulk of the massive new building.

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The Hong Kong Velodrome was full of life and activity, inside AND outside. The day I visited there were so many kids cycling around the piazza, a nice welcoming space for a city that is far from being bike-friendly.

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So amazing to see this kind of playful and helpful activity between kids.

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The Hong Kong Velodrome is surrounded by a network of pedestrian bridges, linking the building with the overall stadium adjacent and public pedestrian park pathways.

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The Hong Kong Velodrome was built for cycling competitions, but that day, it was all about badminton in the its multi-use/multi-purpose spaces.

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A beautiful red tiled iconic oval Customer Service Desk, welcomes all guests at arrival.

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Our Architectural Tour at the Hong Kong Velodrome was made possible through partnership with Hogan Autumn/Winter 2014’s Collection for Casual Business. For three decades, Hogan has provided comfort and style for gentlemen everywhere. These days a plugged-in and fast paced society has changed the way we travel, choosing instead destinations that allow us to discover, explore, and document our creative inspiration. For smart shoes that allow guys like us to negotiate, network, and explore the world from day to evening, Hogan is there.

WEAR Hogan / VISIT Hong Kong Velodrome Park . 105 Po Hong Road, Tseung Kwan O, Hong Kong . Hang Hau MTR Station Exit B . T: +852-28788621 / DESIGN P&T Group / STYLE PHOTOGRAPHY Ken Wu - Lightseed Studio

JJ.

#JJStyle: Moustache Looks Back At 5th Anniversary

Thanks to their blog, we now know that this month the gents at Hong Kong’s best casual tailoring shoppe, Moustache, are celebrating their 5th year anniversary… as in… they MADE IT TO FIVE YEARS!!! As Alex Daye (aka j.a.daye) stated in his blog post, where these inaugural lookbook images above are posted…they began their menswear journey during the financial tsunami at the end of the last decade. That said, it’s really funny how financial tsumanis tend to be a turning point for many people. I know it was for me (quitting my last job, and starting a new post … plus starting this blog), it just makes all of us that much more creative doesn’t it?

Everything you need to know about Moustache you can read on Alex’s blog (or mine since I tend to always feature them). Most importantly, Alex recounts over several blog posts how and what the inspirations were for their business and how it has evolved since then. It’s a great read.

I just wanted to re-blog/re-post these dapper images from their first lookbook, printed on seemingly luxurious matte paper. Alex models in the photos, which are taken by his business partner, Ellis Kreuger, who is also the head tailor at Moustache. The lookbook is a mixture of photographs of Alex in various Moustache-wear from their first collection, in different much loved sites all over Hong Kong… from Shek-O to Sheung Wan. The photos are juxtaposed with handwritten text by Alex, who used to be (and by the looks of the blog, still is) a writer.

Enjoy the style… and the City’s urban nostalgia!

READ On Hollywood Road, the Blog of J.A.Daye & Moustache / WEAR Moustache / 31 Aberdeen Street, Sheung Wan, Hong Kong / T:+852-25411955 

JJ.

Seen&Scene: Supporting Creative Friends at Omar Khan Home and MISCHA Product Launches for Fall/Winter 2014

Friends very close to the heart, designers Omar Khan and Michelle Lai, have each just released new products in Hong Kong last week for Fall/Winter 2014. Omar and Michelle are regularly on the blog, but more so in the last month.Omar is making buzz for finally producing a home collection of area rugs via Omar Khan Home, and Michelle for celebrating the 10th Anniversary of MISCHA by introducing her first unisex line of Camo prints… A possible gateway into menswear style.

+ Omar Khan Home @ BLITZ for Lane Crawford

Last Tuesday at BLITZ, Lane Crawford’s curatorial and creative arm, hosted their first Fall event for Krafted I, a new initiative by the Department Store, to introduce brand curation of products and gifts focused on the luxury heritage market. While all big products market heritage these days, the items available for purchase at BLITZ for a limited time seeks to introduce new products to the Hong Kong market from smaller studios Globally… including Omar Khan Home. 

On immediate offer through Krafted I, are two prints from Omar Khan Home’s line of hand tufted artisan carpets in different colors. Also available at the pop-up is furniture designed by Yabu Pushelberg for Stellar Works, bags by Moreau (soon to open a shop in Hong Kong), jewellery by Maiyet, amazing modern sandals by Alvaro Gonzalez, and a selection of scarves and shawls by Janavi and The Elder Statesmen.

Omar Khan Home rugs on offer in different styles and colors.

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Krafted I product + designers catalogue.

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The Omar and I.

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Delicious bags by Moreau.

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Various curated items on offer.

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A toast at the new Joyce Wang designed, ISONO, to finish of the night.

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One big creative family.

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+ MISCHA Camo Collection @ KAPOK PMQ

Two days later we went to support MISCHA’s amazing new Camo Collection at Kapok Crafted in Hong Kong in the PMQ, a version of the Kapok family of shops focused (for the most part) on brands designed from within Hong Kong. Michelle’s new line even has a cool pop-up space within the curated boutique, displaying a full variety of styles from this new collection you can read more about here.

Designer, Michelle Lai, with her new product line.

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Plenty of supportive fans were at the opening including Menswear designer, Anthony Hill, with wife Fiona Hill (left), and Amanda Thompson of Grana (right).

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Me with amazing archie-fashion junkie, Yuen-Man Tse.

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New HOME Journal editor, Kissa Castaneda (center), with colleague plus Marketing maven, Ms. Khan-Linh (right.)

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My high-school pal and date that night, Carolyn.

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This cheeky duo, Vincent and Jerome.

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This one hot clutch.

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We all decided to celebrate by gorging on Camo-esque Deep Fried Green Tea Buns at Little Bao next door after with Chef Mai Chow and her partner, Samantha Wong from Little Square. Yum!

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Crafted in Hong Kong!

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So, the Krafted I Collection will be available at BLITZ for Lane Crawford now until September 18 at the ifc mall and until September 29th at the BLITZ Glasshouse on Canton Road. MISCHA’s Camo Collection shop at KAPOK Crafted in Hong Kong Pop Up will be available for a few more weeks.

DESIGN Omar Khan Home / WEAR MISCHA / SHOP BLITZ Glasshouse at Lane Crawford . 3 Canton Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon . T: +852-21182288 / SHOP Kapok Crafted in Hong Kong . GF Hollywood Road, HG10, 35 Aberdeen Street, Central HK . T: +852-28588170 

JJ.

#JJStyle: Erbert Chong Discovers A Black Metropolis, AW 2014

Ever since I went to check out Erbert Chong’s debut  starting with a SS14 collection this time last year, i’ve been a fan of his understated yet sharp work. “Fierce” is something I would describe Erbert’s overall directive since launch. As I reported before, Erbert is a graduate of no less than three international fashion programmes… Parsons, FIT, and then ESMOD in Paris. 

One year later, his AW14 collection (ie. second line), is about to go on sale. Dubbed Black Metropolis, the latest lookbook campaign, photographed by Rosemary Conway, does its best to give the looks… derived from turn of the century “Old-World glamour and dark occultism”, a proper stage. The looks are feminine, but with a very masculine and architectural raw edge. Of course, Erbert looks to Fritz Lang’s 1927 Futura-Art Deco film, Metropolis, an inspiration source, as are objects and other architectures like the Chrysler Building.

Still quintessentially a Hong Kong designer, Erbert infuses classic silhouettes of the traditional qipao into the mix to help give a sense of height and strength to the his clients who are always all too eager to wear his collection.

Other things to note, the fabrics used in this particular line are specially sourced from Beijing’s oldest historic fabric shop, Rui Fu Xiang, renowned for their history of making handcrafted Chinese silks for traditional cheongsam and qipao dresses.

WEAR Erbert Chong

JJ.

SG_WOMEN_615x100 New Season

#JJStyle: Three Words. MISCHA. Camo. Collection.

As a long time fan, friend, and supporter of MISCHA’s founder/designer, Michelle Lai, i’m very pleased to announce the arrival of an amazing new capsule line she’s created that’s adventurous, innovative, yet still very “on-brand”, dubbed The Camo Collection. 

The Camo Collection retains MISCHA’s signature hexagonal graphic prints, but splatters it all with a new fluid camouflage motif defined by a traditional muted green, but with vibrant pops of color to mix it up. With the new Camo Collection, MISCHA not only breaks out of the brand’s two-tone japanese-inspired motif of the full-on hexagon shape wallpapering the bags, but she may also have to get used to a new kind of clientele… men.

While there have been talks about a 100% menswear collection from MISCHA for a long time (and there still might be in the foreseeable future), this Camo Collection does a great job catering to both women and men who are already big fans of the MISCHA product and aesthetic. That said I expect the line to gain a few MORE fans as well. Much More. The look and the print is something I have not seen in the market, which I think only works here because of the hexagon pattern giving the whole print a really cool base to play off of.

To further celebrate the arrival of the capsule line, MISCHA collaborates with both Lane Crawford and Kapok to supply the shops with limited edition pieces designed exclusively for each store. A limited edition Messenger Backpack (not shown on this post) will be available at all Lane Crawford stores from August 2014 and a special Kapok version of the “Jet Set Tote” featuring Kapok-exclusive colourways and details will also be available at the same time.

I know what I want…  definitely “the Voyager Duffel”, its the best way to escape in style. 

WEAR MISCHA

JJ.

#JJStyle: 200 Steps With Canali - Behind The Scenes

JJ Acuna interview for 200 Steps, Canali.com from Canali on Vimeo.

Before I procrastinate even further this month, since i’m (as of today) quite backlogged on so much work in general… I wanted to put everything on hold and take a moment to give a big warm THANK YOU and show my gratitude to the Italian suiting brand, Canali, for reaching out to us all the way here in Asia for a secret project that we’ve been working on together since March 2014 this year... a profile collaboration for their global web portal, Canali.com.

The project, part of Canali’s 200 Steps series of videos and interviews published on L’Edizione, the brand’s editorial platform, aims to interview “male professionals” like myself from all around the world in a monthly series of videos and oral interviews examining each gentleman’s processes and craft. Each of the talent interviewed is dressed by Canali in tailored wear for that season, and is focused less on the 80-year old brand and more on the interviewees, their work, and inspiration.

Each 200 Steps story is created within a day’s shooting, and culminates in a 2-3 minute interview film, a 30-second “Word Association” film, and a full Q+A article explaining the full context behind each gentleman’s work. I was told that brand director, and a third generation Canali, Ms. Elisabetta Canali, picks the interviewees herself for the global website. I, for one, was surprised to have met her myself at the interview shoot here in Hong Kong. She’s quite cool in person, and was very “hands-on”… really overseeing the whole entire process.

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For my story, Canali’s team wanted to focus on a designer-blogger’s thinking in relation to curation and the formulation of a story or perspective for the digital space. In order to express what I do and how this translates with tactility on film, their production team imagined a large square white canvas to hang centrally within the space… and throughout the two minute video, that canvas get’s filled with images i’ve taken over the years that have been placed on my various social media outlets thus far.

At first I was unsure, since i’ve only known my work to exist in a certain format online, and certainly not on a “white canvas”, however once i’ve spoken with their London team on the phone, and after they themselves have sent me mood board pegs of example “treatments”, portrait shots, and other reference concepts, I quickly got around to enjoying playing around with how they wanted to frame this whole thing to fit both me, my story, and their format.

Anyway, the rest is history as they say!

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Some Behind-The-Scenes Photographs from our shoot….

The “White Canvas” at the start of the evening….

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Gradually filling up slowly…

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The canvas wasn’t allowed to sway back and forth, so the crew really took great pains to secure it on the set.

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Each time a photograph was placed on the canvas, it was captured on film… sometimes two or three times.

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The Director, Jon Clements, was really detail oriented as to the composition of the photographs on the canvas…

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The production team at London’s Spring Creative, plus the brand team at Canali, picked out the all the photographs from all my social media accounts to be placed on this White Canvas. To be honest, when I started the website and the whole “Wanderlister” thing a few years ago… placing all these images online, there was no way I would have anticipated any of this to come to fruition from the content, that up to this point… i’ve only kept on the Digital Space.

Their team picked out the photographs to cover the five topics on my website; Architecture, Art, Design, Food, and Life/Style.

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Taking a step back, seeing it all up there (I put up each of the photographs myself)… it was really something to see. 

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To step back and have all these things jump out from the computer, and be composed in the physical space like this was really cool, weird, strange, and in a way… a general cosmic affirmation of the whole thing that I do. Very interesting how it takes a collaboration with a big global brand, to really force one to assess and define their work. I definitely did some soul searching by doing this interview with Canali. Most of what I said was off-the-cuff, which surprised even myself. It’s like “A-ha”, so that’s what being an Architect by day, and a blogger by night in Asia is all about. It’s even news to me.

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So for that, I thank Elisabetta Canali, the whole Canali House in Milan, and the guys Spring Creative in London for such a great opportunity. I really learned about myself though all of this as well.

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Other 200 Steps profiles include the brand’s new Creative Consultant, fashion designer, Andrea Pompilo

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Design duo, Barber and Osgerby

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Stage actor, Tony Stephens

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And Typographical artist, Job Wouters.

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Check out our FULL INTERVIEW with Canali via 200 Steps plus our “Words Association” Video.

WEAR Canali . Wheelock House, Shop C, Ground Floor, 20 Pedder Street, Central, Hong Kong . T: +852 2918 1745

JJ.

#theWanderlist: A Style Revival at Bangkok’s Hotel Muse

Thanks to The Luxe Nomad, me and two friends were able to take a summer pause in order to refresh and revive with a quick three-day escape from one urban jungle… into another at Bangkok’s quirky Hotel Muse, part of the “M Gallery” brands of hotels under Accor group. Hotel Muse has actually been in operation for about 4-5 years, and is situated right in the centre of it all, but a little ways away from the actual hustle of Bangkok’s central shopping district, Siam Square, only some stops away on the elevated train. 

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Speaking of elevated train, Hotel Muse is less than a block away from the Phloen Chit stop, which is connected to both, Central Chidlom and the brand new silvery and shiny, Central Embassy Mall. (I was too busy relaxing, so I didn’t even get to go.) That said, who cares about malls, my friends just wanted to get rest, eat, spa, and go to JJ-Market. Thats it. And who can blame them… Hong Kong is already full of malls!

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Hotel Muse, part romantic getaway-part business hotel, is all about “dark sophistication” which is due to its Rama-V era concept, and houses 174 rooms, 11 suites, a sitting library, a full gym (with two bored trainers), a sitting pool (swimming is difficult in there), and a few destination restaurants. People come to Hotel Muse’s Medici restaurant for the best in modern-rustic Italian fare that apparently makes some really great steaks and wine pairings. The Speakeasy is the Muse’s answer to an old-style mixology bar, but with a rooftop view of the city. Su Tha Ros, hosts the hotel’s morning breakfast (which is so-so), but transforms into a wonderful Thai restaurant in the evening that a bunch of my local high-society friends who live there go because it offers a private and more intimate dining experience with authentic Thai fare.

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Generally everyone was happy with their stay. What really made it was that everyone slept so well in Hotel Muse’s beds… ie. could be the best part of the hotel. Everyone, including I, has been so stressed out within the last few weeks that we all agreed, a separation from Hong Kong in general, is a plus… tack on a nice quality bed and you’ve got a winning trip.

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The owner of the Hotel is really into historical nostalgia ie. he has a few personal antique pieces throughout the property. Additionally he loves the word “muse”, because it reminds him of these other words… “music”, “Museum”, “musing”, “amusement park”, etc. which harks back to the concept of creation and exhibition, which to me pretty much describes the hotel’s quirky and showy Asia-Euro-inspired decor. The letter “M” is also everywhere in the hotel, which is tied to this branding with the word “muse” and the “M” Gallery group.

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Whether the style of Interiors is for you or not is dependant on your taste, but the design direction is whimsical where it’s necessary (in the public areas and restaurants) and restrained when needed (in your bedroom.)

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All I know is, anywhere with a DIY Bloody Mary station for breakfast is fine by me.

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When in Bangkok, make sure to make a stop at JJ Market ie. Chatuchak / Jatujak, which I absolutely love. I go there all the time, and I post about it on this blog each time I go because you know what… there’s always something new to see, something new on offer, and the Thais really have style and trends for next year already figured out NOW and have it on offer at Chatuchak. My friends who live there think i’m so silly because they fly to Hong Kong and Japan to shop. That said it’s a different kind of shopping, and it’s not only Thailand… every country I go to, I don’t buy souvenirs… I buy local designer pieces. You know, I’m all about supporting local style ecosystems! If its something you can keep for more than two years (wherever it’s from), then it’s worth it.

Some of the new shops/concepts at Jatujak (Chatuchak) I discovered on this trip include, A Laboratory, a casual his/hers boutique with a bar/cafe adjacent.

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This casual shirts shop called, Kook, with really nice prints.

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This place made great shirts and accessories for men. It’s called, does mondays have an apostrophe before the s?. I kid you not.

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My friend bought two pieces here at Tar Mafia. Who knew?

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I love the ceramic and brass jewellery on offer at Mary Lou.

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I bought quite a few shirts here at SM Object.

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They also had simple accessories on offer.

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This one was my friend’s take home from JJ Market. Insanity.

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We again thank The Luxe Nomad booking website AND Hotel Muse for our wonderful two-night stay in their property. Hotel Muse plus other properties are available at cut rate costs at on that amazing website which specializes in relaxing and tasteful getaways in the region.

Where to next?

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BOOK The Luxe Nomad / STAY Hotel Muse Bangkok . 55/555 Langsuan Road, Ploenchit Road, Lumpini, Pathumwan, Bangkok 10330, Thailand / DRINK The Speakeasy Rooftop Bar / EAT Medici Kitchen & Bar / WEAR A Laboratory . Jatujak Weekend Market, Section 4, Soi 49.2 / WEAR Mary Lou . Jatujak Weekend Market, Section 4 Soi 2, Shop Number 083 

JJ.

SG_WOMEN_615x100 New Season

DESIGN NOTES: A Panoply of Dreams, Omar Khan Home Collection Debuts

My pal whom I first met in Hong Kong, Parsons graduate and amazing designer, Omar Khan, made a name for himself doing great visual merchandising work for On Pedder and then Joyce before going solo doing freelance work for events, and as a spatial designer under his new company, The Omar Khan Collective. Omar then moved from Hong Kong to Malaysia a few years ago, to continue his work for clients and friends in the broader region, which, through his various projects, he was able to slowly accumulate a whole archive of artisan-crafted handmade featured carpets he has created through his journey which can now be sold under a sub-moniker, Omar Khan Home

Omar Khan Home, has since debuted this past year at the first Maison et Objet Asia Singapore in March 2014, and has already been exhibited at Lane Crawford’s Chengdu Flagship… with word on the street that it may also be on offer here at Lane Crawford in Hong Kong as well. (Will keep you updated on this.)  

Omar Khan, a Singaporean with Dutch, Chinese, Egyptian, Pakistani, and German roots, was educated in the states since High School to college, uses his amalgamated past experiences to create designs which re-orient the “orient”, but in a graphic format that is contemporary and romantic… ie. “a panoply of objects, textures, and sensations”, according to him. The line as of now consists of 15 designs, with each comprising of about 3 different variations and made of wool, viscose, and silk… all hand tufted in Malaysia with Omar’s personal guidance on each piece that goes from factory to client. His signature rugs are quintessentially memorable and are each defined by “strong graphic motifs and fantastical elements” which Omar says are derived from his “dreams”. We have a quick chat with Omar about the new Omar Khan Home line and his amazing 2014 debut so far.

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theWanderlister+: Congratulations Omar on the launch of the the Omar Khan Home, tell me about the new line and how it fits conceptually with your design company, The Omar Khan Collective?

Omar Khan: The Omar Khan Collective and the home brand, Omar Khan Home, is really a company and product that wants to tell your story, be it thru lifestyle, retail, residential or commercial projects. We shy away from trends and we believe a personal investment into your life means more. I suppose thats why I decided to launch with a collection of statement rugs.

From an interior perspective, I always felt that having a rug in your space is an anchoring element. From a wellness perspective, we see the rug as more than just a rug, it’s a statement. You chose that piece because on some level it resonated with you. 

theW+: The last time you were on Wanderlister.com, we discussed your VM work for Papillon, a lifestyle boutique destination in Kuala Lumpur. That was about 4 years ago. Do you still do similar kinds of work today? And how does your work for The Omar Khan Collective feed into your home styling brand and vice versa?

OK: We are first and foremost an interior focused company. We have a consulting arm that deals with issues outside the realm of interiors but still very much intrinsic to the end presentation, We have done big atrium installations for two malls in Kuala Lumpur and some VM and  branding consultation around the region.

Within the consultancy we have what we call “Crafted and Curated” and this is an initiative specific to hotels who want to up the ante with their gift stores. Omar Khan Home will be expanding into scented candles and luxury towels which we will use to anchor the merchandise selection and then add on with a special curation from local artisans. Selfishly i miss a really good hotel gift store so to be able to bring that back is very interesting to me.

theW+: The feedback of your work has been quite positive. Some of your rugs have been showcased throughout China via Lane Crawford and other parts of Asia as well. Why do you think that the response has been so great? Did you expect it all?

OK: For me the rugs are a labor of love, which comes from a pure creative side that I feel resonates with people. I am planning a series of trunk shows throughout the region and it will be interesting to see the perspective on the collection from country to country. I always believe in the transformative effects a rug can have on a person and in their home, so for me that positive response specific to wellness is quite rewarding.

theW+: Who do you look to as your design heroes?

OK: I suppose they come from all different design fields. Hayze Menon, the man behind the music from my video, Brian Christie, who concepted and directed it, Meredith McLean, a creative powerhouse whose ability to take your vision and go the extra mile to turn it into reality. I’ve been privileged  enough to work with them and continue working with them on collaborative projects moving forward. 

Statement Rugs by Omar Khan Home from Omar Khan on Vimeo.

In regards to the usual suspects, I’ve always had Ray and Charles Eames, up there on the same pedestal as well as Erwin Olaff, Tim Walker & Dries van Noten.

theW+: What else will we see from Omar Khan Home, I know you will be collaborating with Lane Crawford in Hong Kong, among other projects…

OK: Moving forward, as a company our biggest ethos is that everything presented by The Omar Khan Collective should resonate with you. I hope to expand into Bed & Bath products with a range of oversized luxury towels, chinaware, fabric, and wallpaper collaborations. Such is the case for our brand new and very limited range of scented candles from France. There are 4 notes - our hero scent “Fleure Blanche”, “Palace”, “Lounge”, and my personal favourite “Bad Boy”. I have such great dreams for them in my head : )

DESIGN Omar Khan Collective and Omar Khan Home

JJ.

#JJStyle: Blast Off Cosmonaut, Jonathan Liang’s AW14 Collection

One of Asia’s hottest designers, Jonathan Liang, is busy at work in his Paris studio making the most out of the best opportunities, not only as a young 26 year old making global waves in fashion via his own namesake line, but also as the new Creative Director of Malaysia’s “IT” label, Dude & the Dutchess.

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On offer in stores now is Jonathan Liang’s Fall-Winter 2014 collection inspired by the Cosmonaut. Before fashion, Liang was an illustrator. The narrative as concept is obviously on full display here stating that the collection is “an adventure starting from the Big Bang through the cosmos - a life of space suits worthy of Jane Fonda’s Barbarella.” Signature Liang is at play with each item’s form dependent on function and utility, yet defined by refined feminine silhouettes and innovative use of various fabrics and textures. 

This collection is complimented by a collection of exclusive footwear designed in collaboration with Nelissa Hilman.

WEAR Jonathan Liang

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