News – Asia


Despite the decline of tourist arrivals into Hong Kong last year and challenges in the luxury retail sector, Italian-owned mall operator RDM has just opened its first Hong Kong outlet. Located in the KC100 complex near Kwai Hing MTR station, Florentia Village is hoping to attract 500,000 customers this year thanks to its proximity to the airport. The 60,000sq ft boutique-style mall comprises upscale luxury brands, such as Prada, Salvatore Ferragamo, Versace and Kenzo. With three existing malls in China – Shanghai, Tianjin and Guangzhou, RDM is confident that their brand name will travel. Maurizio Lupi, Managing Director of RDM Asia said: “Our brand is growing fast in China, so having the same type of operation in a different approach with a very strong mix of luxury brands, we are sure to attract customers from China who are visiting Hong Kong.”


AL_A, the architecture practice headed by RIBA Stirling Prize-winning architect Amanda Levete, has completed Central Embassy, a striking 37-floor retail, leisure and hotel tower in central Bangkok for Central Group, Thailand’s leading retailer and department store operator. Located within the former gardens of the British Embassy, along Ploenchit Road, Bangkok’s primary commercial artery, the 1.5 million square feet mixed-use projects merges a seven-storey luxury retail podium and a 27-storey five-star Park Hyatt hotel tower into a cohesive, architectural entity. The tower is the first to be completed by a British architect in Thailand. The hotel and shopping mall are bound together using the notion of a continual looped form to give a more intuitive merging between plinth and tower and between the programmes.


A Cle de Peau Beaute flagship store has been launched in Singapore. Owned by Shiseido, the Japanese luxury skincare brand says it chose Singapore because of robust growth in its beauty market. The new 94sq m store at Mandarin Gallery faces Orchard Road, directly opposite the new Apple store at Knightsbridge Mall. It also features 12,000 suspended Swarovski crystals, two facial cabins, a gift-wrapping counter and a private area with plush seating for intimate consultations. Shiseido Asia-Pacific President Jean-Philippe Charrier commented: “I see Singapore as a window for the other countries, I find it interesting to start things here, a country that is not big in terms of market size, but it has so many visitors. So many people visit Singapore and the brand here.”


10 Design has been appointed as Lead Design Architect on the new Huafa Plaza development following an international design competition for this landmark mixed-use project in Hengqin. The development of Huafa Plaza will amalgamate three key development sites within the new Hengqin District in Zhuhai. It will accommodate over 300,000sq m of boutique retail, food and beverage facilities, and office space when built, construction is expected to complete in 2019. The winning design consists of three high rise towers together with three boutique retail and food and beverage environments. Miriam Auyeung, Partner at 10 Design commented: “When Huafa Plaza opens, it will become one of the most dynamic destinations on Hengqin Island.”


Alcantara, the manufacturer of the eponymous luxury material Alcantara® and ambassador of Italian excellence worldwide, has announced the opening of its first Concept Store in Asia, in Shanghai. The Alcantara® store can be found at Shanghai Village, the luxury shopping destination. This marks the second Alcantara® Concept Store, following the opening of the first store in Milan in 2016. Among the different applications, which include automotive, fashion, consumer electronics and interior, Alcantara produces its own collection of finished products such as bags, accessories and garments. The prestigious Shanghai Village in China will now play host to a meticulous array of art, clothes and accessories. This store will be the first time Alcantara branded products are available to buy in Asia. Developed and operated by the creator of award-winning Bicester Village in the UK, Shanghai Village is the most creative Village from Value Retail, which is situated in the heart of Shanghai’s International Tourism and Resorts Zone, adjacent to Shanghai Disney Resort. This is a prime location that boasts an unparalleled shopping experience. “We are very pleased to celebrate the opening of Alcantara® Concept Store in Shanghai, our first location in Asia, which is one of our most important markets, says Andrea Boragno, Chairman and CEO of Alcantara®. “The store presents an extraordinary opportunity for Alcantara to underline the versatility of the material and the lifestyle approach of our brand, which combines tradition and innovation under the banner of the authentic Made in Italy value. The unique shopping experience of this store is in perfect harmony with Alcantara’s® art installations that have arrived in China.”