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Ageing revellers contemplating ditching dancing for a pipe and slippers style sedentary lifestyle are being targeted by US furniture company Raffel Comfort Sciences, who in summer launched a new range of chairs called ‘The Rave’.

The designer chairs feature Ipod storage space, speakers in the chair back and a facility which synchronises bass notes with vibrations from four pre-programmed massage treatments for the bargain basement price of just $799.99 each.

“The Rave massage chair: a party for your back,” gadget portal slipperybrick.com  enthused, “Why go to a rave when you can have one from the comfort of your very own massage chair?”

SlipperyBrick’s less than reverential tone (regarding the chair’s massage functions they said ‘large, beefy Swedish woman not included’) matched similarly disrespectful media coverage to the world’s first rave coffee table, designed by Daft Punk several years ago.

“If you haven't forgiven Daft Punk for the dreary electronic lament that was
One More Time and seemed to be on repeat throughout the whole of 2001, then you might not be thrilled to hear the French twosome has branched out. Into furniture design,” the Guardian sneered at the time.

“Designed with the same attention to electronic possibilities as their songs, it's a shiny black glass cube decorated with illuminated red squares that can flash randomly or light up in time to the music you are playing,” they explained.

Channel 4 similarly derided the Punk coffee table’s ‘macho colours of the moment: black and red’, suggesting the £1,000 tables were aimed at ‘Disco Daves’.

“Who would have thought it,” the UK TV channel added, “A coffee table that can help you relive your clubbing years?”


Article by Jonty Skrufff

Subscribe to Skrufff music newsletter at www.Skrufff.com

Retro Rules Of Attraction

A 17th century book offering dating tips appeared at auction in the UK this year months after it was discovered in the collection of a recently deceased Yorkshire book trader.

“The Ladies Dictionary, Being A General Entertainment For The Fair Sex” includes love tips including bathing in red wine to get in the mood, timeless advice on affairs (‘they often end in 'blood and disgrace') and equally contemporary advice on first date etiquette.

“Is it proper for a woman to yield at the first address?” the Dictionary asks, “You'll get better conditions if the enemy does not know how weak you are within.” (Metro. UK)

Less forward thinking advice appeared in a US book “Sex Secrets of an American Geisha: How to Attract, Satisfy and Keep Your Man” which suggested women should ‘always make your man your highest priority’, ‘give him credit for your orgasm’ and ‘never refuse your man’s offer of sex.’

“When your man asks to him sex with you, agree to do so enthusiastically so that he never experiences rejection,” the book also recommended.

“Should you be too ill to make love, you can make him feel better by saying, “I’d love to make love to you right now, but I’m achy all over.” Follow that up by telling him the next available time when you should be able to make love. You might say, “I know I’ll feel better in the morning. Can we set the alarm a half hour early and make love then?”

Article by Jonty Skrufff

Subscribe to Skrufff music newsletter at www.Skrufff.com

Tattooing’s Last Taboo

The BBC examined the increasing popularity of tattoos amongst ‘normal people in October, declaring ‘would-be prime ministers' wives have them. Lawyers have them. Doctors have them. So how did tattoos become so acceptable?’

BBC writer Finlo Rohrer suggested tattoos are now an ‘everyday thing’, particularly for women and interviewed sociology professor (and tattoo expert) Katherine Irwin, who pointed out that many new tattoos are wimpy generic concealed ones which in reality are nowadays ‘middle class symbols’.

"They (middle class people) like to play with fringe identities without sacrificing their middle class status,” Professor Irwin suggested, “They get a tattoo that is thumbing their nose at middle class society in a way that is so mainstream that it would be hard to push them out,” she said.

Skrufff man-in-Bangkok Bee, who has well as having his entire back covered by a giant centipede, has a face tattoo, was unimpressed with the general trend, declaring ‘tattoos are no longer a statement now unless it’s a fashion statement.’

“Though I don’t mind normal people getting them,” Bee added, “Anything that makes ‘norms’ more colourful is a good thing.”

The British born DJ and guitarist has long based himself in Bangkok where he DJs and plays with Futon and spoke proudly of his face tattoo, which he’s continued to gradually expand, he said.

“My first face tattoo was three white lines on my cheekbone in the mid eighties and since then I have had 2 beauty spots and a blue /jade coloured rune added,” said Bee.

“Charles Manson drew an X on his forehead to cross himself out of society; I guess my face tattoos were a similar statement. The blue Vikings used the rune I had done, they believed it could make them invisible in battles. It has worked for me in several other situations,” he added. “Facial tattoos are the last bastion of tattoos that have any effect on other people,” he said.

Despite admitting that he was barred from several gyms recently when on tour in Japan, Bee said even his face tattoo is no longer so shocking.

“Most people don’t think my blue rune is a real tattoo because they have never seen anything like it before. Either that or they can’t see me coz I am invisible,” he laughed.

He also chatted happily about his massive centipede tattoo that took 87 hours of work to be inked onto his back (spread over a year).

“I had it all done in Thailand by a Thai tattooist and his wife. It's kind of a homage to William Burroughs (he had a centipede phobia),” Bee explained, “It teaches me to overcome my fears.  Plus centipedes are such beautiful ferocious creatures.”

Bee offered one piece of cogent advice for anyone thinking to follow in his footsteps; ‘never bargain the price of a tattoo down’.

“You want to be tattooed by a happy tattooist,” he laughed.

Tatttoo fanatic Judge Jules also urged caution when deciding to be inked, advising sober reflection before making the decision.

“I've got a mate who's a tattoo artist, and I was in his studio watching people come in and make five second choices from a book full of designs.
They were making rapid fire decisions about something that would be with them for the rest of their lives,” he told Skrufff.

“In my case he did a number of different bespoke designs especially for me, and I chose one after rejecting a number of his sketches as unsuitable.  At best tattooists are great artists, and I'd like to think that mine count as such.”

Futon’s new album Painkiller is out now. To remix their music, click here:

http://www.rehabisfab.com


Article by Jonty Skrufff

Subscribe to Skrufff music newsletter at www.Skrufff.com

Christmas Festival of Lights


Enjoy the hustle, bustle and good cheer of the holiday season at InterContinental Grand Stanford! At the center of the holiday excitement is the Christmas Grotto located in B2 next to Mistral and Hoi King Heen!

 

The InterContinental Grand Stanford Christmas Grotto is open early this year and welcomes all who seek the true spirit and meaning of Christmas! Nestling amongst the snow laden trees and twinkling lights is Santa is waiting for your kids to make there Christmas wishes come true.

 

The children’s corner will feature Santa each weekend at any of our restaurants can bring the children to meet, play and have fun at the Grotto.

 

Visit him in his special grotto located in B2!

 

Opening Hours

December 1 (Sat) – December 2 (Sun), 11:30pm – 3:00pm

December 8 (Sat) – December 9 (Sun), 11:30pm – 3:00pm

December 15 (Sat) – December 16 (Sun), 11:30pm – 3:00pm

December 22 (Sat) – December 23 (Sun), 11:30pm – 3:00pm

* Plus Christmas Eve and Christmas Day

(information provided by the pr company)

The Grand Mercure Hongqiao Shanghai is warming up for the winter season with special room rates and delicious new editions to the menu to keep guests cosy and comfortable all winter.

The contemporary luxury hotel is offering a special room rate of RMB818 net per night* for a limited period only with exclusive benefits including complimentary early check-in and late check-out, complimentary internet access throughout the hotel and free use of the fitness centre. The Grand Mercure Hongqiao Shanghai is offering this special room rate from December 1st, 2007 until March 31st, 2008 for superior rooms only.

The Grand Mercure Hongqiao Shanghai has 496 elegantly appointed rooms and suites with spacious living areas and apartment style in-room amenities complimented by excellent functions rooms and leisure facilities.  Opened earlier this year, the Grand Mercure Hongqiao is conveniently located for both downtown Shanghai and the international airport, and close to local restaurants, bars and shopping centers making it the ideal location to explore Shanghai, whether on a business trip or family vacation.

 

Also starting from December 1st 2007, the restaurant at the Grand Mercure Honggiao Shanghai, Asiatique, is introducing 20 different varieties of clay pot dishes to the menu for a limited time only to excite diners and guests’ appetites.   Available exclusively until January 31st for RMB88 +15% service charge per set, the clay pot dishes include specialities such as Diced Chicken and Eggplant with XO sauce, Tahini Scented Lamb Stew with Artichokes and Tomato, Oven-Simmered Duck Stew with Olives and Tomato and many many more**

 

Asiatique is The Grand Mercure Hongqiao Shanghai’s Asian inspired restaurant offering guests a unique dining experience in the atrium area, flooded with natural light and featuring an exceptional flower wall for a graceful atmosphere. 

 

The Grand Mercure Hongqiao is part of the worldwide Grand Mercure Hotel collection – a brand of the Accor group specializing in boutique hotels in prime city and country locations. The Grand Mercure Hongqiao is the seventh of the brand to open in mainland China – and the second in Shanghai.

 

Sister China properties are in Xian, Beijing, Dalian, Shijiazhuang, and Shenzhen.

 

Accor, the European leader in hotels and tourism, and a global leader in corporate services, operates in nearly 100 countries with 166,000 employees.

 

With 40 years of expertise in its two core businesses, it also operates the Sofitel, Novotel, Suitehotel, Ibis, All Seasons, Etap Hotel, Formula 1 and Motel 6 brands.

 

*    Room only

 

** Full list of Clay Pot dishes available throughout the promotion includes:

 

          Diced Chicken and Eggplant in XO sauce

          Braised Lamb Stew with White Radish

          Black Mushroom and Bokchoy with Fried Gluten Puff

          Seafood and Bean Curd Stew

          Chicken Stew and Black Bean and Shallot

          Diced Chicken and Salty Fish Stew with Bean Curd

          Curry Beef Stew with Carrot Thai Style

          Pork Rib Stew with Soy Sauce Wuxi Style

          Winter Melon Stew with Mixed Vegetables

          Spring Chicken and Chestnuts Stew

          Boiled Beef Ribs Stew with Cabbage and Vegetables

          Tahini Scented Lamb Stew with Artichoke and Tomato

          Chicken Red Curry

          Chicken Stew with Livers and Fruits

          Boiled Spicy Cabbage with Pork Ribs

          Indian Vegetable Curry

          Boiled Radish with Seafood

          Oven-simmered Duck Stew with Olives and Tomato

 

 

For more information on Grand Mercure Hongqiao Shanghai please visit www.grandmercure.com/asia

 

For reservations please contact The Grand Mercure Hongqiao Shanghai on

Tel: (86) 21 5172 7959

Fax: (86) 21 5172 7961

E-Mail: reservation@grandmercure-hongqiao-shanghai.com

(information provided by the pr company)

Christmas by Design’ at Radisson Hotel Pudong Century Park

Shanghai’s very own ‘art hotel’ celebrates Christmas 2007 with characteristic creativity and flair – and a boldly controversial take on the consumerism of Christmas.

Instead of starting Christmas dinners on December 24th as is traditional. The Radisson Hotel Pudong Century Park is throwing the city’s ‘First Christmas’ party on Sunday December 23 to take advantage of the fact that this is the first non work day of the Christmas period.

In keeping with the hotel’s artistic vision, it has also commissioned local pop artist Chen Hangfeng to create customised artwork and multimedia installations under the theme ‘Christmas by Design’ which will be on display throughout the hotel from November 25.

Chen’s works are festive but also provocative as he questions the consumer culture that dominates Christmas in China. His abstract Christmas trees and snowflake decorations are formed using the logos of famous international brand names in complex patterns which reference traditional Chinese paper-cutting techniques. Inside his Gift Boxes in the lobby, a video installation shows factory workers in a village of Zhejiang province that mass produces 50 per cent of the world’s Christmas gifts and decorations.

 “Christmas is becoming a very important holiday in modern Chinese culture, a symbol of increasing purchasing power and growing consumer desire,” says the artist. “I hope to reveal an insight into Chinese consumer culture which provokes the question: “What is the true meaning of Christmas?” For many people in China it means producing toys and gifts for the rest of the world.”

Against this artistic backdrop, Radisson’s ‘First Christmas’ celebrations will be held on Sunday December 23, when families are free from work and school. A lavish party in the Magnolia Ballroom will feature a Christmas dinner buffet, live music and entertainment, and a Grand Lucky Draw with prizes including a luxury overseas holiday for two along with digital cameras, iPods, mobile phones, DVD players and more. Tickets are priced at RMB 888 net per adult and RMB 488 net per child, inclusive of unlimited red, white or sparkling wine, beer and soft drinks.

Also on December 23, Infinity restaurant will be serving a ‘First Christmas’ buffet dinner with live music and a lucky draw priced at RMB 688 net per adult and RMB 388 net per child, followed by a Christmas Eve buffet dinner accompanied by live jazz priced at RMB 488 net per adult and RMB 288 net per child, and a Christmas Day Brunch for RMB 268 net per adult and RMB 148 net per child.

Signature Chinese restaurant Yar Chi Ting offers a selection of festive menus throughout December priced from RMB 188 net for a minimum of two people, with special dinners on December 23 and 24, and a Christmas Day Dim Sum lunch for RMB 118 net per person.

For those wanting to make a night of it, guests who book the ‘First Christmas’ dinner on Sunday December 23 at Magnolia or Infinity will be entitled to enjoy the ‘First Christmas’ accommodation package for just RMB 688 plus 15 per cent surcharge. This includes one night’s stay at the trendy five-star hotel with 30 per cent discounts on food and beverage, use of the gym, sauna and tennis court, complimentary in-room broadband internet access and wireless in public areas, free admission to the Zendai Museum of Modern Art and late check-out until 4pm.  

Kicking off the seasonal festivities, a Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony will be held in the hotel lobby on Sunday, November 25. This event also promises to light-up the faces of 20 young children from a rural primary school in Shanghai’s Baoshan district. In an effort to spread festive cheer throughout the local community and remember the real reason for the season, the children have been invited to assist the hotel’s GM, Mr Gerhard Fasching in lighting the tree and celebrate the occasion with dinner and presents. More parties follow in the lead-up to Christmas, including a ‘First Christmas’ Press Cocktail on November 27, a Corporate Thank-you Party for 250 clients on November 29, and an Artists’ Launch Party on December 8.

A selection of traditional Christmas goodies will be available at Bytes Deli, from brandied Christmas pudding to mince pies and chocolate liquors. Bytes Deli also has deluxe hampers filled with Christmas treats and a bottle of Veuve Clicquot Champagne that make wonderful gifts for friends or associates.

About Radisson Hotel Pudong Century Park

The 362-room Radisson Hotel Pudong Century Park was conceived as an ‘art hotel’ complementing the neighbouring Zendai Museum of Modern Art by the same owners. Designed by Australian firm Hassel and featuring specially commissioned artworks and sculptures by high-profile Chinese artists, the hotel combines striking contemporary design with stylish all-white guestrooms and the latest high-tech conveniences making it one of the world’s most unique and ravishing Radissons.

Radisson Hotel Pudong Century Park is conveniently located in the heart of Pudong, Shanghai’s dynamic financial, business and cultural centre. It is part of the hip lifestyle and dining enclave of Thumb Plaza – which is named after the giant thumb sculpture in the hotel lobby - and is the closest hotel to the Shanghai New International Expo Centre.

(information provided by pr company)

ImageDiesel is proud to launch (with, literally, a BIG BANG) the third and final chapter of Issue Four of its seasonal ’zine, “BRAVE,” by presenting an exhibition by American photographer extraordinaire, Terry Richardson.

Notoriously known to push the boundaries of fashion photography, Richardson, in his first ever visit to Hong Kong, will be showcasing a brand new body of fresh work in his exhibition, titled “From Rio to Hong Kong.”

National Geographic Brand Ibiza the World’s Sleaziest Island

National Geographic Traveller Magazine published the results of their annual top island guide this week, in which 522 ‘travel experts’ placed Ibiza second from bottom, out of 111 ‘selected islands and archipelagos’.

"Ibiza is not Spanish anymore. Or Balaeric. It is a colony of Europe and, at times, seems more a colony of British ravers. Half the island is still 'natural.' The other half has been lost completely to the party circuit”, one writer complained.
 
"Ibiza cannot get rid of the vicious circle it went through a few years ago,” another added, “Booze, partying, and drugs are a big part of an increasingly sleazy scene."

The writers ranked ‘cloudy, beach-poor islands’ like the Shetlands and Isle Of Skye at the top of their poll, to the consternation of Pacha chief Danny Whittle.

“Who cares what these people think; if your thing is counting sheep then Ibiza probably isn’t the ideal destination, but then if you like nice beaches, cool hotels and great social life then the Shetlands is probably not ideal either,” he pointed out.

“Have they been to Ibiza recently,” Danny continued.

“Ibiza is what it is, there is no need for excuses. If people look beyond the clubbing, social element (which is the best in the world) they’ll also find an amazing island with fantastic local people. This island hasn’t become famous because it’s a hell hole but because millions of people love it and enjoy its reality.”

Danny went on to praise Ibiza’s’ ‘sport, archaeology, museums and confirmed that Pacha have no plans in the immediate future to relocate to the Shetlands (‘not unless sheep take up dancing, drinking and enjoying life a little’.)

“In a way Ibiza has become like a superstar as a destination and some of the press just look for the negatives to get column inches,” he added, “Then you see the same reporters jumping around the Space terrace having a ball.”

National Geographic’s worst ranked island this year was St. Thomas in the U.S. Virgin Islands, which one critic described as a ‘totally spoiled and low-quality, high-volume destination."

“The native population is unfriendly,” another travel hack cautioned, “With a coldness that borders on outright hostility."


Article by Jonty Skrufff

Subscribe to Skrufff music newsletter at www.Skrufff.com

Stare For Sexual Success

Looking at someone directly increases a person’s attractiveness, according to new research published this week by Scottish psychology school The Face Research Lab.

The Aberdeen University beauty analysts reported that as expected people find happy, healthy faces appealing though also responded favourably to the direction in which a person looked at them.

"Faces that were looking directly at the viewer were judged more attractive than faces with averted gaze,” study chief Dr Claire Conway told magazine Proceedings of the Royal Society this week “"This shows that people prefer faces that appear to like them and that attraction is not simply about physical beauty, she added (Reuters).

The same organization published another beauty study earlier this year, which showed that women find men more attractive when other women smile at them, explaining a common condition noted by many men in relationships.

"We tend to think about attraction as a personal thing and personal choice, but we actually seem to be quite influenced by what other people think,” head researcher Dr Jones told the Scotsman in January,

"You hear a lot of men saying 'when I was with my girlfriend I had a lot of interest from other women, but since we've split up that interest has vanished'. We've shown that this is probably true,” he added.

‘’Erotic filmmaker’ Tony Comstock also emphasised the importance of smiling this week, in an article about the explosive growth of amateur porn this week, in London’s Metro newspaper.

“Smile,” he advised in his top tips for making a DIY porn clip, “The most consistently sexy thing a person can do is smile. Yes, pouty can be oh-so sexy, but an authentic smile shows you're having fun. It also gives a feeling of reality to the images that commercial porn doesn't have,” he said.

In more porn news, Japanese icon Nana Natsume warned this week that ‘facials’ can ‘hurt like hell’ and suggested men seeking a lasting relationship should do their best to avoid them if at all possible.

“If the heat of the moment does result in a shot in the eye, the best way to treat it is by washing with milk,” she advised, “Milk has the effect of washing sperm cleanly away. That's common knowledge on the sets of adult movies." (Spa Magazine/ Mainichi)

 

Article by Jonty Skrufff

Subscribe to Skrufff music newsletter at www.Skrufff.com

Judge Jules Says Snitch On Smelly Clubbers

Judge Jules called on clubbers to inform on smelly clubbers this week and complained that the UK’s recent smoking ban is causing people’s body odour (BO) to ruin otherwise great nights.

Jules suggested the smell of smoke had been previously masking people’s BO and complained that ‘the more off-the-hook and energetic the atmosphere is the more the smelly minority start stinking’.

“Somebody’s gotta’ take a stand,” he decreed on his weekly blog at JudgeJules.net, “ I want to start a campaign for clean smelling clubbers to name and shame the smelly people on the dance floor to embarrass them into washing before going out next time. Equally, it’s time that all venues introduced scented dance-floors. Harass your local club manager on the issue, and the gagging will eventually stop,’ he urged.

Mikki Most from Trailer Trash said they’ve definitely noticed more body odour at their tiny London On The Rocks headquarters, telling Skrufff ‘hot, sweaty dancing bodies are great for the club but tend to smell a bit after a few hours on the dancefloor’.

“Jules’ suggestion of scented dance floors is a great idea and I’m sure some of the bigger venues with some money to burn would consider it,” he agreed, “However, most of these have pretty good air conditioning anyway so I don't thing it's so much of a problem. It's the small sweatbox places like us where it's more of an issue - most of which don’t have much spare cash so I very much doubt it will happen.

Keeping a can of deodorant in your record bag isn't a bad idea and if any really bad offenders come into the box you can always give them a quick blast,” he suggested.

Armani Code aftershave wearing fellow London club promoter (Fonteyn said no-one stank at their Nuke Em All grand opening last month (‘We had a light smoke machine on, whether that masked any smells I don't know’, he suggested) and was also less taken with perfumed clubs

“I think scented dance floors might be a nice idea but with the majority of UK venue owners being total cheapskates, the reality will mean clubs stinking of nasty air freshener (a particular dislike of mine),” he laughed. “I think people will have to just scrub up.”

Canadian electro-disco diva Betty Forde told Skrufff they’ve had am off and on smoking ban in clubs there for years and said so many Canadians smell so much that smoke never hid BO anyway though stressed her main complaint is bad breath.

“As a DJ, when someone comes up to you to bug you while you're working and ask you stupid questions and make stupid requests, although it’s very loud and tempting to just tell them you can't hear them, beware of doing so, for they will not retreat, rather they will get right in your face and shower you with their bad breath and spit,” she warned, “And if you're not careful some of the gross white foam caked in the corners of their mouth will dislodge and fall onto your mixer.”

“And not to go off on one, but once Stinkmitt played with this band in San Francisco, the Judy Experience, and their whole trip was to actually smell as bad as possible, they thought it was  "art", she laughed.

“So you can imagine how much the stage f**king stank after they got off and we went on. They totally outstank StinkMitt, that's for sure. I am still having smelly nightmares about them.”

 

Article by Jonty Skrufff

Subscribe to Skrufff music newsletter at www.Skrufff.com

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