Madness in Madrid
Once in a generation, a hotel comes along that helps define a city; that puts a destination on (or sometimes back on) the map for trend-driven travellers looking for the sharpest point of the cutting edge.
Keep the Good Stuff for Yourself
So the silly season is over and you managed, through a series of perfectly-executed smoke screens, bluffs and slights-of-hand, to hide that really good bottle of wine from thirsty visiting friends and relatives, pawing off instead the bottles left over from the company Christmas party.
Look Aging in the Eye
So, you’ve decided that in 2017 you’re going to be a little more adventurous, a little more daring, a little more inspiring.
Look Aging in the Eye
Sure, it may not have happened yet, and we’re not saying it will any time soon, but eventually, there’s going to be a morning when you look in the mirror and realize that age is catching up with you.
An Entertainment System for Your Face
Ah, the modern jet age, an era when the seats are smaller, the cabin crew snarlier, the delays longer, the screaming children louder.
A Touch of Real Mexico
Unless you’ve toured the country, you could be forgiven for thinking Mexico’s culinary heritage is steeped in taco shells and guacamole.
A Gentleman’s Guide to NYE
Looking to farewell 2016 in style? We look at the top New Year’s Eve parties in Hong Kong and Macau and find there’s a solution for every New Year’s Eve dilemma.
The Bunny Solution
You know it’s time for a party when bunnies get bouncing. Dress to impress as LKF’s favourite steakhouse becomes the Playboy Mansion with the Porterhouse by Laris and Playboy New Year’s soiree. Arrive for dinner or come later for the lounge party, with Veuve Clicquot and cocktails served by playboy bunnies, and music from renowned DJ Aldo.
HK$988 includes dinner, countdown and late night lounge;
HK$300 per person for Lounge from 9pm;
HK$6,000 per VIP table.
7/F, California Tower, 30-36 D’Aguilar Street, Lan Kwai Fong, Hong Kong;
The Burlesque Solution
Armani/Prive will transform itself into a seductive burlesque boudoir this New Year’s Eve for its NYE en Rouge party, complete with sensual dance, captivating cocktails, and beats spun by DJ P. Grant. Don’t forget a dash of red to really look the part.
Tickets at the door from HK$550 including two glasses of champagne, from 10pm;
Landmark Chater House, 8 Connaught Road, Central;
The Black Tie Solution
Don your slim-cut tailcoat for Namo’s Great Gatsby Glam NYE Ball, where you’ll enjoy front-row views of the fireworks from the terrace lounge, free flowing champagne, and sumptuous Thai cuisine. If you don’t find your own Daisy Buchanan for the night, there’s an anti-hangover breakfast kicking off at 2am to ensure you start the year right.
Premium Ticket with Dinner for HK$998; 8pm – 3am;
Shop G18, Empire Centre, 68 Mody Road, Tsim Sha Tsui East;
The Polynesian Solution
For Hong Kong’s best tiki experience this New Year’s, head to Mahalo Tiki Lounge in the heart of Wan Chai. Soul Train, a tiki-esque disco party filled with flair jeans, platforms, tie-dye shirts, and diminished inhibitions, will bring the 1970s back to this South Seas hideaway thanks to tracks spun by DJ FuFu.
Advanced tickets for HK$350 include 1 drink;
on the door for HK$500 includes 2 drinks; 8pm – 4am;
29/F QRE Plaza, 202 Queen’s Road East, Wan Chai;
The Carnivoric Solution
If your perfect New Year’s Eve is good steaks, red wine, and the chance of meeting alluring Latino women, then we suggest you head for Gaucho, which will be hosting a five-course dinner that includes Argentinian slow braised short ribs and Aberdeen Angus fillets, a couple of glasses of champagne, and sultry Latino tunes. Opt for the free flow package and toast the new year in style.
HK$1200 per person includes 5-course meal, a glass of Veuve Clicquot on arrival and a second to toast the New Year;
5th Floor, LHT Tower, 31 Queen's Road Central, Hong Kong;
The High Flier Solution
Duddell’s will host soaring aerial acrobats at its Cirque! New Year’s Eve party. Expect free flowing champagne and signature cocktails by mixology maverick Marek Wo Vojcarcik, stunning performances over the terrace, and a performance by Hong Kong's premier ska band The Red Stripes.
Entry for HK$700 includes free flow champagne and cocktails; 9.30pm onwards;
3/F Shanghai Tang Mansion, 1 Duddell Street, Central;
The Rio Solution
Get your samba on with the Kee Club Copacabana NYE Party, complete with Latin American-influenced dinner menu, live performances by Brazilian dancers, and sets by DJ Rork and DJ Kenji.
Advanced tickets for HK$400, $ 500 At Door includes 1 glass of Veuve Clicquot champagne; 10pm onwards;
KEE Club, 32 Wellington Street, Central;
The Retro Solution
Bored of LKF? Hop on a ferry to Macau in time for Starworld Hotel’s Reminiscence Party, held at its chic Whisky Bar, where the live band will rock you with music from the 70s, 80s and 90s. Plan your acceptance speech in advance for the best dressed award and be sure to stretch before tackling the dance battle.
MOP$350 includes two standard drinks and one glass of Moët & Chandon champagne; 9:30pm – 4:30am;
16/F Starworld Hotel, Avenida da Amizade, Macau;
The Electro Solution
One of the hottest nights in Macau will at the Ministry of Sound NYE Countdown After Party, at The Venetian Macao’s CotaiExpo Hall, complete with sets from DJ and producer Shaun Frank, and vocalist Delaney Jane.
MOP$288 includes 1 standard drink; 11pm onwards;
Cotai Expo Hall F, The Venetian Macao, Macau;
The Vegas Solution
Turn a new page in the most decadent way at Club Cubic’s New Year’s Eve Party. The most prestigious club in the Vegas of Asia will make sure you experience the craziest of a countdown parties with music by Polish DJ Tom Swoon. Get in before midnight for complimentary entry.
MOP$350 includes 1 standard drink, midnight onwards;
Level 2, The Shops at The Boulevard, City of Dreams, Estrada do Istmo, Cotai, Macau;
Two Hands, Two Feet, Four Wheels
Few destinations lend themselves to a driving holiday quite like Scotland. With its more than 10,000 kilometers of ruggedly-beautiful coastline, historic castles, pristine scenery and friendly (if not intelligible) locals, Scotland has long been a favourite for classic car lovers looking to hit the open road sans crowds and pesky police traps.
There are a few things you must do if you’re visiting Amsterdam, the global city of free love (or not so free as the case may be). Sure, you should walk the canals of Jordan; knock back a few cold ones in Dam Square; or even visit some of the city’s world-famous coffee shops (while non-residents still can).
Singapore’s Newest Hideaway
You may not have thought about it much but the bag you carry can define you as much as those expensive shoes, that vintage watch, or that flashy haircut. You may have just stepped out of a Thai boxing session but if you’re sporting a backpack with that pinstripe suit, you might as well be wearing trainers and a pocket protector.
Prepared to be Judged by Thy Purchases
It’s almost the silly season again and you know what that means – you’re about to be judged on what you buy the women in your life for Christmas. To help you ease your way into the season we’ve done some of the thinking for you with our 2017 What to Buy Her Gift Guide.
Keep your lady silky smooth with Jo Malone’s new Geranium and Walnut Hand Cream, which soothes and softens hands with a lightweight formula comprising apricot kernel oil that allows for quick absorption without a greasy residue. Developed to complement the brand’s fragrances, the hand cream also boasts aromatic geranium layered with walnut that nourishes skin cells for younger looking skin.
Treat your other half to a bespoke pampering experience at Four Seasons Resort Koh Samui’s The Secret Garden Spa, where a new suite of indulgent treatments inspired by Thailand’s ancient wellness techniques are now on offer. A new signature treatment for couples, Siam Lovers, combines a nourishing coconut oil and jasmine rice scrub with a four hand massage, followed by a rose bath in an al-fresco tub (far from prying eyes), ensuring you both a happy ending to the year.
As the age-old adage goes, diamonds are a woman’s best friend, and we’re sure your lady love will have a lasting friendship with the Galanterie De Cartier Necklace by Cartier, which features a brilliant-cut 1.69-carat diamond encased in 18k white gold in a design that’s sure to turn heads and win you brownie points to last a lifetime.
What to buy that femme du jour that’s new on the scene without setting some sort of weird relationship precedent? Tom Ford’s new Velvet Orchid Lumière is pretty much perfect; the fragrance opens with Italian bergamot and mandarin, as well as luminous honey, while succan absolute, a hyper-purified rum extraction, lends a caramelized, lacquered sugar cane note. After all, who doesn’t like their woman smelling like a Cuba Libre?
For when you’re far from home, the Gigi 2 Rechargeable Vibrator is powerful sensual massager that will make her journey to Pleasuretown all the smoother, thanks to a curved and flattened tip that’s designed to stimulate the G-spot, and a long battery life for when she likes the pleasure to linger.
If you’re going to get lipstick on your…collar, you might as well choose the colour, and you can’t go wrong with the new Vernis À Lèvres Vinyl Cream Liquid Lipstick by YSL, which combines lip stain, lipstick and high-shine lip gloss. With a soothing undercoat and a vinyl shine overcoat that dresses the lips with a bright, daredevil colour for a sharp contour, this little purse addition will enhancing those pouty lips for up to ten hours.
An ideal gift for the ladies in your life you’re not pursuing but want to appreciate, Bollinger Rosé Champagne Brut is a special blend of a red grapes from the Grand Cru vineyards of Champagne that offers a layered structure and a complexity with touches of red berries that make it ideal for the festive season. www.champagne-bollinger.com
A gift as much for her as it is for you, Victoria’s Secret’s Supersoft Crochet-trim Sleep Romper makes every woman feel like a Victoria’s Secret Angel. With a crochet lace-framed plunge front and a cute, edible (just joking) centre front bow, this extra soft and silky sleepwear reveals the curves of her body, while making sure she feels comfortable and sexy in the sack. You’ll enjoy her putting it on just as much as she will enjoy you taking it off.
Singapore’s Newest Hideaway
There’s something magical about giving an old building a new lease on life. It’s something that we don’t do as often as we should in Hong Kong, and those few times we do, it seems to take a generation to actually make the change.
And You’ll Never Believe Where
You’d have to live under a rock not to know about chef James Sharman and his innovative monthly pop-up restaurants, held in Sheung Wan.
Embrace the Power of the Sun
Did you know man has been worshipping the sun for millennia? The sun, or Ra, was pretty important to the ancient Egyptians, with a whole solar dynasty of gods created over centuries.
Part Restaurant, Part History Lesson
Being a soldier in Napoleon's army was a tough business. Not only did you have to risk bullets and cannon fire far from home, but you didn't even get a decent meal afterwards.
Taking Your Wine to the Next Level
So you might not know why we decant wine, and even if you do, you might not be 100 percent sure when to do it, and that’s ok because let’s be honest, even if it makes the wine taste better, the whole process can look a little wanky.
Groom to Win
Today’s gents looking to maintain their debonair persona should count themselves lucky. The men of the past didn’t have the raft of grooming options we now take for granted. In the late 1700s Pierre Fauchard, known as the father of modern dentistry, recommended rising with one’s own urine to kill germs and maintain good oral health.
Your Next Great Adventure
List off the countries in Africa you’d associate with the classic safari and you’d be forgiven for leaving out Zimbabwe. The former colonial territory of Rhodesia has had a rough time over the past decade or two;
Tech Meets Style
When Steven Sasson, an employee of Kodak, invented the first digital camera in 1975, it consisted of several off-the-shelf devices jerry-rigged together. Of course the company wasn’t all that impressed with the idea of digital photography
Time to Brazilanese
Fusion cuisine may have become the culinary craze of the 1990s (and the cocktail equivalent of Midori by the Noughties) but it’s been around a lot longer than that.
Your Own Robotic Stalker
Few concepts bridge the divide between science fiction and reality quite like Artificial Intelligence, and you might be surprised how old a concept it really is.
It’s What Your Wet Bar’s Been Waiting For
The cocktail shaker is a fundamental component to any cocktail set up. The first shakers could be traced back to 7,000BCE, where jars were used in pre-Hispanic Mexico and South America. Even the Eqyptians blended spices and fermented grain spirit in containers before serving.
Time for a Touch of Exploration
The history pages are filled with men looking for adventure and glory, and arctic explorers are no exception.
Is it Date Night Already?
We’re spoiled for choice when it comes to bars and restaurants in Hong Kong, of that there is no doubt. But it can still be tricky to find just the right spot for a first date – too loud, it looks like a pick up joint, too quiet and she’ll think you’re reaching for chloroform every time you pick up your napkin.
Change for the Good
Change. You may love it or hate it. You may even suffer from metathesiophobia (it’s worth a Google), but change, as the saying goes, is inevitable. Change is about making things more relevant, more attractive, more efficient, and more effective. Change is about keeping up with the times, about replacing old norms with new trends.
Fine Dining Done Right
You might have noticed that the ladies like a gent who knows a thing or two about the finer things in life. Knowing which wine goes with your main is all well and good but have you thought about taking it to the next level?
The recently winner of Sports Illustrated’s 2016 Swimsuit Model Search, NecesCity speaks with Hong Kong-born model and ass-kicker Mia Kang about life in the lens, Bond Girl aspirations, and what she misses most about the Fragrant Harbour.
You were born in Hong Kong but live in New York; how often do you return to our fair city and what do you miss most?
I try to come back every 3 or 4 months. There is a lot that I miss about Hong Kong. I miss the convenience of the city and being able to get so much done in a day. I miss the fact that you can be hiking in the mountains or wake surfing in the sea in 20 minutes, and of course I miss the food, dong leng cha and char siu in particular.
You’re clearly far more than just a ‘pretty face’ and gave up a promising career in finance to model fulltime. Was that a hard sacrifice to make?
I retired as a model and went into finance. After working as a commodities trader for three months, and then training in derivatives consulting for another three, I decided to move back to Hong Kong to be closer to my family and give modeling a last spin. It wasn't a difficult decision for me to make. No one can take my education from me now that I have it under my belt. Modeling is a career with a short life expectancy, and I am lucky to be able to do it. So I thought I should pursue it while I still can.
You’re a Eurasian with a Korean mother and an English father; do you think this has given you an edge in your modelling career?
Definitely. I think selling a unique product always helps in business. It makes you stand out from the rest. I also think that these days there is a lot of value in the ethnically ambiguous look. On the downside, you’re a minority so the pool of opportunity for you is smaller. Generally when people cast they have a particular look in mind, so I have come to accept that it’s harder for me to get in the room. But when I'm in the room, that's my time to shine.
You’ve nailed your dream job, what’s next for you?
I never stop dreaming. Sports Illustrated cover! I would love to accomplish a lot. I would love to try my hand at acting. I've always wants to be a Bond Girl, I've always wanted to be in martial arts movies. But most importantly all of this is a platform for me to try and make a change in the industry.
You’re an anti-bullying advocate; does that stem from personal experience?
Yes I was bullied growing up. Bullying can destroy a person’s life. I think that it is important to try and equip youth with tools to best deal with social pressures. I certainly wish I had more strong female role models when I was growing up, and there is nothing more that I would like to do with my life than to be that for others.
You’re the perfect balance of brains, beauty and lethality - where does your passion for Muay Thai come from?
First of all, thank you, that’s such a nice thing to say. I initially tried it just for fitness purposes, but I quickly fell in love with it. I love the discipline and bravery. I think the technique is beautiful and fluid. I admire the intelligence that goes into fighting - it’s just as much about the mental as it is the physical. It’s about finding opportunities and your reflexes. I love how it makes me feel when I land that perfect shot. I definitely think that it takes a certain kind of personality to be able to do combat sports. I have always had a tough edge to me, and this is my perfect outlet. I prefer it to other martial arts because it can only be practiced with impact, and I prefer it to boxing because of the use of all the limbs.
You’ve said you’d like to act in action movies; which actresses inspire you?
Lucy Liu, Michelle Yeoh, Uma Thurman, Zhang Ziyi.
Having travelled to some of the world’s glamorous destinations, where do you call home, and where do you escape to?
Home changes for me regularly. Right now home for me is Koh Samui (where I spend a lot of the year learning and training in Muay Thai), and New York where I am based for work. Hong Kong will always be my real home and where I am from. Although I am not Chinese, when people ask me where I am from I always answer Hong Kong.
You’re out in the town in Hong Kong; where are we likely to find you and your friends?
Dinner at Mott32 or Brickhouse. Drinks at Stockton. Sitting at a table on the terrace of Dragon-i catching up with friends.
As someone who spends her life being photographed, what is beauty to you?
Beauty to me is subjectively universal. There is something innate in beauty, but at the same time we all have our own preferences. To me, beauty lies in the unexpected, in the weird, in the peculiar and quirky. I like faces that I'll never forget. Beauty has no boundaries or limitations. Beauty doesn't fit into boxes or categories. It is not a certain size, colour or shape. Real beauty is a feeling not just a thought. I think that a real supermodel oozes this feeling. She walks into a room and lights it up; she leaves people with a certain presence. It’s not only about the exterior; it’s about who she is.
Take Steak Seriously
The relationship between a man and his butcher is, in our humble option, akin to his relationship with his priest, his wife, and her sister – it’s something special.
It’s Our Time Now
So you consider yourself a bit of a music buff, a festival fan, a man-about-the-dancefloor, and with good reason. You’ve travelled the world to attend, front row and all, the world’s best music concerts and events, from muddy farm fields in the English countryside, and the beaches of Singapore, to the free love best found in the streets of Berlin.
Time to Turn Off
It’s possible you don’t know much about the origins of floatation therapy. Using a sensory deprivation tank (which sounds like the swimming pool at Guantanamo), neuropsychiatrist John C. Lilly pioneered today’s modern float tank concept as part of his research into sensory deprivation back in the 1950s.