Malls in Asia vs Chadstone

photo-13-10-16-5-43-02-pm2 years – that’s how long one of my local shopping malls took to renovate a new block within the complex. Now that the 1st phase is completed I’m already starting to hear these common remarks: “Chadstone  competes with the shopping malls in Asia”, “it’s better”,”it’s bigger”. Why Asia?  Shanghai, Jakarta, Manila, Bangkok, and Saigon— are crazy about developing and expanding new urban landscapes influenced by the malls in America. They serve as the global hub for multiple mega complexes.

Asia’s economy in this 21st century thrives on the  ability to consume at levels at or near those of the US or Europe. Shopping is like a sporting culture to them, the influence of Sex and the City and the New York fifth avenue shopping fantasies  appeal to them on many levels. Their malls  are  meeting spaces, glossy, air-conditioned indoor parks – a place to ignore the air pollution, poverty, and heat of the real world. So yes, for you folks travelling to South East and East Asia for the first time, now you know.

photo-14-10-16-1-11-34-amSo how does Chaddy compare? In terms of variety and being able to cater to everyone, yes Chaddy is a massive win. From the top of my head here’s what Chadstone has to offer that the malls in Asia don’t have all under the one roof:

Kmart, Target, The Reject Shop and Daiso – perfect for anyone who wants to shop for everyday items. Art Riot, Stuff n Nonsense (costume shop), Kikki.K, Muji, Typo, and Lincraft shops – for the creatives. Bath and Body Works, Crabtree & Evelyn, The Body Shop, Kiehl’s and Aesop – for skincare and body products. Two leading Australian department stores  Myer and David Jones situated next to the luxury district, and of course the luxury district itself:  Fendi, Prada, Gucci, Valentino, Givenchy etc. A section of the lower level for kids; Armani Junior, Pumpkin Patch, Build a Bear, Bardot Junior, Toys R Us and a Legoland to be opened next year.

photo-13-10-16-2-18-43-pmColes, Aldi and Woolworths, seafood shops, premium butchers, an Asian grocer, a market for fresh food – all conveniently located near each other  for those who do grocery shopping (I’ve never seen more than one supermarket in a mall overseas!). Two major food courts as well as  private  eateries and cafes  scattered throughout the building – the favorites being  Ladurée (Parisian cafe), Royal Stacks (burgers), Fonda (Mexican restaurant),  Marae Izakaya (Sushi Train), Nene Chicken, Yokozuna (Ramen restaurant with green tea sweets) and of course, Hungry Jacks burgers (yum).

photo-13-10-16-6-11-08-pmThere’s already a Burberry across the road, this may be an extension?

Apple, Samsung and JB Hifi are there to accomodate the tech department and Nike, Adidas, Under Armor, Converse and Rebel Sport accomodate your sporting needs. A random Tesla showroom. Hoyts cinema complex. Watch repair, shoe polishing and key fitting services. A mini playground for kids. Sneakerboy, Platypus, Hype, Footlocker and Adidas Originals for you sneaker heads. And finally: Sephora, Uniqlo, H&M, Mecca Maxima, and Zara.

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It is the Fashion Capital, but it’s more like the Variety Capital!

Singapore’s Marina Bay Sands, Jakarta’s Plaza Indonesia, Philippine’s Mall of Asia, Macau’s Venetian hotel and mall, Chengdu’s New Century Global Center: every one of them has their own target market, with each shopping experience differing to one another including Chadstone. In the Philippines you have an indoor  ice skating rink and a theme park next door, Chengdu has an artificial indoor beach, Singapore and Jakarta houses more luxury brands and the Venetian in Macau has a huge mix of branded fashion and a casino/hotel complex. So in a way, you can’t compare any of them with Chadstone.

img_2076Venetian, Macau

20131213_175400 img_3602Taipei 101, Taipei
img_0134Marina Bay Sands, Singapore

I think Chaddy  is still a win. Yes the size draws similarities  with the mega malls in Asia but it depends on experiences shoppers want  that define the word “better”. Perhaps shopping with family is ideal for you and you’ll probably find Chengdu or Philippines the better spot. Or if you solely want to shop for everything luxury in one spot then Singapore and Macau is your pick (they have Vertu phones, Richard Mille watches and Hermes bags – the most expensive brands in their specialty).

Chaddy just caters to everyone’s shopping needs – and even eating needs!

A cosy space in Windsor

promo-windsor“Sheen Slip” art exhibition by Naomi Nicholls

Happy Spring people, although there’s not a whole lot of sunshine happening just yet, we certainly are getting hit by the typical Melbourne hayfever and bipolar weather. I’m pretty sure Melbourne is the only place on the face of this planet that endures extreme change in weather. I’m still learning how to adapt to these quick turnarounds, clearly I won’t get used to it since I’ve always been  the one to  catch a cold easily, which sadly is a reoccurring pattern for me this past month.

One of the nights I had to hide my cold was when I attended the opening of 4 solo shows at the Alternating Current Art Space two weeks ago.  I know it’s only a week left till it closes but maybe if you’re strolling through High St in Windsor, you might wanna volunteer some of your time to be in this small location.

The gallery is currently hosting  4 solo exhibitions under the one roof, curated and produced by some of Victoria’s successful young artists. I didn’t manage to get photos of all the artworks but shoutout to all the artists involved: Naomi Nicholls, Jessica Ledwich, Kate Wallce and Melanie Joy Caple. It was nice meeting some of you, great to be able to bounce ideas around and listen in on  your  motives behind these works.

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I really love Kate Wallce’s miniature hand painted  subjects. Her exhibition “In Transit” showcases her observations of people in the middle of  commuting to different places. The paintings look like they’re a decent size but they’re actually tiny – roughly the size of my index finger. They’re quite realistic and the simplicity of the paintings are quick enough to make you want to look closer to analyze the tiny brushstrokes.

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Naomi’s use of space was interesting given that she works on a large scale, it’s different to experience spacious art in a narrow space. The narrow part of the gallery  can be easy to pass by without noticing but with her bold and colorful palette it’s probably the perfect spot to drive attention. You won’t miss it from the corner of your eye.

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My friends and I headed to Fonda on Chapel for dinner afterwards. The atmosphere was buzzing and the waiter took us to the rooftop area, which was even louder…Friday nights what can you expect! The food was freaking delicious and the menu was an appealing piece of art  to look at. I recommend the Fish Tacos and the Pulled Pork Quesadillas.

I find myself in the city too often and don’t get the chance to fully explore places around South Yarra, Windsor and Prahran. The last time I was here was in July when I had dinner at Woodland House  with my family – another tasty  restaurant and less noisy! In fact we were the noisiest ones dining here.photo-5-7-16-6-52-41-pm photo-5-7-16-7-29-04-pm photo-5-7-16-8-24-44-pm photo-5-7-16-8-24-53-pm

I’m usually around these areas whenever there’s an occasion for a lunch or dinner. I do hear  there’s some great art and design galleries and shops around there also. If you guys can recommend me spaces or even restaurants to visit please email me!

Another week of fashion

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Melbourne is celebrating  another week of fashion this Spring! Following the success of  Virgin Australia’s Melbourne Fashion Festival  earlier this year, Creative Victoria is back at it again with the  Melbourne Spring Fashion Week. The Creative Collection exhibition at Town Hall is one of the first few showcases that contributed to the launch of this one-week event. Here, you’ll witness a body of work by rising Victorian designers and artists who bring in their own unique practices to create statement clothing, footwear, films, graphics and Avant Garde millinery.

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I advise people when attending any kind of fashion exhibition or runway to study   a specific part of the garment carefully. Usually in haute couture shows  the clothing worn by models down the runway are highly unpractical and there’s a reason for that. It’s obviously not intended to be worn in public but it’s made to inspire viewers with their   different techniques and how their techniques could be applied to improving the future of fashion. It’s always that one aspect on the garment that is inventive ie. the way zips are used, the placement of buttons, the way a fabric drapes etc. This is what the Creative Collection exhibition offers with a large mix of bold and minimalist designs.

There are plenty of events scheduled throughout the week including workshops, premium runways and seminars. This week’s the week for you to get a dose of inspiration even if you’re strolling by Swanston st. The big white tent known as the ‘Hub’ is home to a Mecca mini popup shop, free Messina ice creams, T2 samples, Vespas, Movish digital specialists, live entertainment and a lineup of designer runways.

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No I didn’t hashtag this on instagram but yep that’s me and my first time on a Vespa hah!

A right-brainer by day and occasional blogger by night, you've landed on a place where I live and breathe all things art, design, culture and fashion. You'll find me documenting my life in the creative field, endless travels with friends and family and a bit of food.

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