By Jiaqi Luo and Nick Withycombe
Anyone living in China circa 2000-2010 would have seen a couple of tried and true design trends for luxury homes and the wealthy owners thereof. Or to be more precise, anyone living in China from around 1644-2005 would have seen the Qing and Ming dynasties being faithfully replicated with ‘mahogany’ as the answer to every design question. From 2005-2010, it was pan-European gold and chandeliers – many, many chandeliers that swept the nation. Continue reading “From Ming to Minimal: The Evolution of Luxury Design in China”
Earlier this month, ILTM China arrived in Shanghai. The first specifically China-focused iteration of the event came after strong demand for a dedicated Chinese version, with the market now too large to be just part of ILTM Asia. Because in case you missed it, Chinese outbound and domestic travel is booming.
There’s a high chance that, after China’s ‘Golden Week’ of national holidays at the start of October, you read that hundreds of millions of Chinese people travelled here, there and everywhere. These big numbers make for easy headlines, yet mean very little. Continue reading “How Green is the New Gold for Luxury Chinese Travellers”
By Jiaqi Luo and Nick Withycombe
You’ll have noticed that we didn’t opt for a shout-y ‘big numbers’ headline that conveys no other information than China has a large population and many people bought many things. Whether hundreds of millions of people were buying billions of RMB of items or not (they were) is no simple bell-whether for strategy. In fact, luxury brands need to tread carefully during the sales mania of Double 11.
The most consumerist baby on Earth was conceived by Alibaba in 2009. If you’re new, then it’s called ‘singles’ day’ and falls on the 11th of November, with 11/11 marking out the ‘1’ of dreaded singledom into a hyped shopping fest. Now, it even has a reasonably nauseating ‘gala’ with colourful lighting and whichever western star is paid the most to perform in front of baying masses. This year it was Mariah Carey. Continue reading “How Luxury Brands Win in Double 11; Exclusivity – and Simplicity”
The travel hopes and dreams of one of the most important demographics for luxury hospitality globally are finally revealed in The Luxury Conversation’s China Insight Report:
Next-Gen Luxury Travellers: Affluent Chinese Families.
Continue reading “China Insight Report: Next-Gen Luxury Travellers – Affluent Chinese Families”
The recent growth and mouth-watering potential for chocolate brands in China is similar to many forms of luxury. Chocolate is something that was rare (and ‘Western’) even in the early 2000s, yet remains an alluring luxury today – while still subject to distinctly local palettes that generally dislike desserts or tastes that are allegedly ‘too sweet’.
If we start getting into pure overall numbers then, unsurprisingly for China, they are huge and rising. But in real terms, it’s clear that chocolate is seeding its natural brilliance (The Luxury Conversation openly stating a strong positive bias for chocolate) throughout first-tier cities. As with any market, China’s room for growth is where chocolatier brands need to explore.
One brand – one person – who is sowing the beans and reaping the rewards is the beloved Pierre Marcolini, already with three stores and a loyal following in China. Continue reading “5 Questions with: Pierre Marcolini – on Chocolate, China and Niche Luxury”
It’s safe to say that Chinese consumers are even more knowledgeable about the world of luxury than their Western counterparts. In fact, luxury is a way of life for affluent Chinese consumers, and this arguably affects brands in many ways.
One of the major changes of recent years has been the shift from making blingy, big-logo purchases to a more curious look at luxury. Today, it’s about being discerning, as having a savvy knowledge of luxury goods expands from China’s first tier cities and well-travelled set of affluent consumers, to reach wider, regional audiences. Continue reading “Op-Ed: Hyper-localism – Luxury Brands in China Must Prepare to ‘Go Local’”
While the wine industry in China has been booming for years now, the industry is far from the simple gold mine that it seemed to be in the past. Those who have lived in China for some time will remember the ‘grape rush’ circa 2010, as many a Frenchman came to cities such as Shanghai, quickly opening up a wine importing / retail company, before just as quickly shutting it down as Chinese consumers were able to buy any grape under the Sun from Tmall and China’s other m-commerce giants.
A decade ago, a bottle of wine was a mere box on the checklist of middle-class aspiration – a token alongside cheese, coffee and golf – while nowadays there has been a shift to genuine enjoyment, knowledge and dare we say oenophilia (while a checklist photo of the wine glasses ‘cheers’ is still a common WeChat sight come Friday evening). Domestic vineyards are proving so bountiful that Chinese wine tourism is set to becomine a thing. Counterfeiting is finally being tackled. Trade organisations are allegedly throwing huge amounts of money at borderline unknown Chinese ‘KOLs’ to live-stream themselves drinking particular wines.
China’s cup poureth over in terms of demand, with the country set to become the world’s second biggest wine market overall by 2020, and is in fact already leading in the top-end segment, as is revealed below. But what is the state of this unique marketplace? In terms of reaching the Chinese wine drinker whether you’re a national wine group, a label, importer or restaurant/bar, what’s happening in 2018 and what should you know about the ‘grape wall of China’? Continue reading “Wine in China: A Fruitful Opportunity If You Can Hit the High Notes”
At the recent M Talk, hosted at M Glam on the Bund, the theme Wellness Uncovered saw entrepreneur and KOL speakers discuss the booming wellness and vegan industries in China.
One of the speakers was ‘Sporty Bitch’, the fitness and lifestyle blogger who has grown a loyal, avid readership of her brutally honest and highly informative perspectives on everything to do with getting fit and living well.
We took a moment to speak with Sporty Bitch about her success and where she sees the industries heading.
Continue reading “5 Questions with: Sporty Bitch at Wellness Uncovered, M on the Bund Shanghai”
China specialises in big numbers and the car market is no different, from 6.7 million passenger vehicle sales in 2008 to 24.7 million in 2017. While many articles about business in China tend to wring their hands over the ‘whys’, this topic doesn’t need much social pondering of why Chinese people like cars – people in all countries opt for car ownership when financially able, and you just may have read that the Chinese economy has grown somewhat in the last decade.
The more intriguing poser is how do car brands ignite passion for their marque in China’s competitive environment? Continue reading “How Luxury Car Brands in China Show That Bigger is Better”
Last month saw Shanghai as the location for the World Premiere of the new Macan. This was no coincidence, as China is now the largest individual market for Porsche for the third year in a row. Of the 350,000+ Macans sold since 2014, over 100,000 are in China.
China’s passion for Porsche began long ago and the feeling is clearly mutual, with bold new projects such as the Porsche Experience Centre in Shanghai, next to the F1 International Circuit, being the first in Asia. Continue reading “5 Questions with: Jens Puttfarcken, President & CEO of Porsche China”