Saturday, April 04, 2009

Buying Trip HK & China - Part II

Day 2

March 19th. I had my super fast breakfast around 9 AM at the hotel’s Garden Café. Believe me, breakfast in Hong Kong is an absolute haven! I’m not joking, I mean it! No matter how small or how big the rank of the hotel, Hong Kong hotels offer something different and unique. They really combined a mixture between east and west cuisine. Oh well, enough said.
We left hotel around 9.30 AM and headed our way to Hong Kong Exhibition Center located somewhere in the Bohemian Square. This venue is the main site of Interstoff. Interstoff is a Textile and Garment Exhibition held special for buyers only. I, myself, am a Junior Buyer in this case. Now I understand why working inside retail industry is very hard. A Retail Buyer must have a sharp eyes and good intuition in textile. You cannot pretend you know this thing if you seriously enter retail industry. We’re not allowed to take pictures inside this venue so I guess it really explained why this Interstoff is very special. I got around 3 to 4 name cards of various garment company in Asia. Who knows someday I’m going to need them! Who knows!
Our next pit stop after Interstoff is IFC Mall! Yes, IFC Mall is an upscale shopping center located not very far from the venue of Interstoff. IFC mall really understand the meaning of ‘high end’ shopping mall for fashionista out there. If you think that Plaza Senayan or Plaza Indonesia had given you the best atmosphere and ambience of what they called ‘luxurious lifestyle’, then think again! With only 3 to 4 storeys, IFC mall itself already looks huge especially because it is located adjacent to IFC office building and Four Seasons Hotel. It’s too bad they didn’t have Louis Vuitton or Hermes stores but trust me, it doesn’t even matter! What really surprised me is that IFC mall has something that both Plaza Indonesia and Plaza Senayan (or even Paragon Singapore) didn’t have. IFC Mall still has middle to middle up boutiques like Mango, Zara, Nine West, Steve Madden but the percentage is quite small compare to other ‘high end’ boutiques like Valentino, Dolce and Gabbana, Burberry, Anne Klein, Cole Haan, Murella, Juicy Couture, etc. even Lane Crawford store that sells high end stuff like Miu Miu, Jimmy Choo, Manolo Blahnik, Lanvin has bigger percentage compare to other middle up boutiques. Speaking of foods and drinks @ IFC, you also have to pay higher price if you insist on dining at this place. For example, an appetizer like salad or hot dog will cost you at least HK$ 90 – 100 for single portion. You do the math then! However, this price is applicable only @ Palace IFC restaurant so results may vary at other places.
By 2 PM, we finished our quest @ IFC mall and headed our way straight to the border of Hong Kong and Shenzhen, China. We arrived around 3.30 PM but had a little problem during the process of getting into Shenzhen. Apparently, the information given to the person in charge at the border was wrong. We’re supposed to pass by the new border located in New Territories that is adjacent to the new bridge built by Chinese government. However, information regarding our temporary visit to China by Visa on Arrival was given to the immigration people @ Lo Wu border so they hold our permit and told us to wait till 8 PM. Yeah I kinda sad and suffered a little but I was happy because during that moment, I could spend more time by getting to know each other well. We finally left the border around 8 PM and went straight to restaurant for dinner. We finished our dinner around 8.40 PM and went straight to Guangzhou by our bus using the toll free way. We arrived in Guangzhou around 11 PM. The hotel that we stayed is Landmark Hotel Guangzhou located just beside Pearl River and near the famous shopping arcade: Beijing Lu.
To be continue...

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