Lifestyle and Culture

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ImageOn the 30th April (this Thursday) The SilverBlack Card will have an updated annual fee of HK$880 (currently the fee is only HK$650 per year)

The new price reflects added value as we continue to add more and more benefits. With over 150 outlets now accepting the SilverBlack card, there's no reason why you shouldn't start being privileged today.

Click HERE to join now!
London 'Another Country' of Creatives

People living in England are increasingly choosing to live alongside like-minded neighbours, leading to increasing regional differences, researchers from Cambridge University revealed this week.

Study chief Dr Jason Rentfrow analysed the personality traits of over 11,000 people scattered across the UK and concluded that London in particular is becoming ‘another country’.

“People in London tend to be, on average, more analytical, assertive, dominant, efficient and creative,” he told the Sunday Times this week.

“People in Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales are less open-minded, more traditional and less tolerant of differences.”

Birmingham born tech-house DJ Andy Baxter left his home town of Shirley in 2002, though bypassed London altogether for Ibiza, he told Skrufff this week.

“I was a local DJ playing more soulful US house and garage on the circuit and had many great times but I reached a point where I felt my career in Birmingham was progressing a little slowly,” said Andy, “So I decided to take the chance of moving to Ibiza to start a new life.”

Going on to become a regular headline DJ at virtually all the island’s superclubs, he’s nowadays a year round Pacha resident and has no plans to leave, enjoying having ‘some of the most interesting and funny friends, who are always there for me.’

“Its quite hard to say how things are different here,” Andy continued. “Though at the moment, with all the financial problems in major cities, you can clearly notice the vibe is different when you’re travelling, whereas in Ibiza it's not at all obvious that we are in the middle of a crisis,” he said.

“And lets not forget the weather issue, this winter has been one of the sunniest I can remember. I think this plays a vital part of peoples’ lives,” he suggested.

Manchester based DJ/ producer Iain Taylor recently became musical director of the city’s uber-hip underground club Area 51 and like Andy said they look to Ibiza for inspiration before London.

“I like London as a place to visit and hang out and party but I don’t think I could live there,” Iain told Skrufff, “Manchester is the perfect size for me. It’s a big city but the music scene is more like a small village. I love it.”

The 33 year old creative chief moved to Manchested aged 17 and robustly defended his adopted home against its harsh image.
“I have lived in both Hulme and Chorlton, both areas which border Moss Side and Hulme especially has a reputation with people from outside of Manchester as being a rough or ‘dodgy’ place,” said Iain.

“Instead I found it to be most agreeable. I used to walk home at all times of the night with my records and sometimes carrying a CD deck and I’ve never had even a sniff of trouble. It’s a fallacy that there are gangs of youths looking for trouble,” he added. (Another Country: Rupert Everett in his 80s prime) (Andy Baxter)

Article by Jonty Skrufff (

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Exhibition Period: May 2nd – June 14th, 2009
Location: Philia Lounge, 4-8 Arbuthnot Road, Central, Hong Kong
Artist: Leslie Lachiche
Cocktail Reception - Meeting With The Artist: May 2nd and May 27th 2009, 7pm

The Earth, with its purest and untouched natural beauty is the core of Leslie Lachiche’s inspiration. Landscapes such as sunsets, beaches and still life images are used as a form of pure expressions of Nature and its ‘perfection’.

Not only is the “Earth Elements Collection” a display of the world’s natural beauty, it also provides a reflexion on our turbulent modern time, with an emphasis on issues such as global warming and environmental issues. As part of her mission as an artist, Leslie contemplates, celebrates and retransmits the beauty and glory of mother Earth and its humanitarian aspects. Her work acts as a reminder to conserve, respect and cherish our only one planet called home.

Her ultimate goal is to inspire others to take action, through a compelling depiction of what might be lost if nothing is done. The collection uses vibrant colours in an aim to touch the soul of individuals, thus capturing intense emotions and feelings. 

The collection is divided into four main themes – the four vital elements: Fire, Water, Air and Earth, each being a way of reconnecting with mother Earth and nourishing the soul. Each element’s own powerful property, be it energizing, calming, refreshing or comforting, go straight to the heart of the audience. However, when displayed together, their healing energies decuple to reach a deeper philosophical meaning.

Artist’s Profile: Born in Besancon, France, Leslie lived her childhood in Lyon until her early twenties. Graduated from Lyon’s Supdemod - Fashion and Graphic Designing School and settled in Hong Kong five years ago, she since has come to mature and fully express her artistic creative talents through painting in the natural surroundings and ethnic diversity of Asia. Acrylics on canvas are her favourite medium for their flexible use and modern, eco-friendly approach to paintings.
“Harmonious and colourful Beauty is food for the Soul”

(information provided by the organiser)

ART HK 09 Hong Kong International Art Fair returns to Hong Kong at the Convention and Exhibition Centre from 14-17 May 2009.

Check out over 110 galleries from 24 countries.

Imageadidas has been the influential pillar of sports history since its establishment in 1949. Today adidas, the world's leading sports brand, is proud to celebrate its 60th anniversary. For creativity, adidas Originals uses "60 years of Soles and Stripes" as a product inspiration which describes decade-sets showcasing cultural moments in time and Adidas interpretations across the past 60 years.

The Celebration will be themed "60.09" (60th anniversary, year 2009). To pay tributes to the founder of adidas, Adi Dassler, a series of Adidas'

‘Cross Dresser’ Defrocked In Dubai

A man in Dubai has been sentenced to six month in jail, suspended for three years after he was caught walking round a shopping mall wearing clothes that ‘glittered like a lady’s outfit’, the Gulf News.

The expat was convicted of cross dressing in public after cops spotted his dressed in ‘a bra, mascara, women's perfume and a wig’ the paper reported, though the Indian man insisted he was innocent.

 "I'm not guilty,” he told the Dubai public prosecutor, “I was cross-dressed because I was training to perform a woman's role in Indian cinema,” he explained.

The cross dressing criminal was only identified by his initials PK and of being of Indian origin, though the case is likely to cause a frisson of concern to the tens of thousands of British expats who live and work in Dubai, particularly those who enjoy fancy dress. British psychologist Ros Taylor said large numbers of Brits are partial to dolling themselves in an interview with the Guardian several years ago, when Prince Harry was busted for dressing as a Nazi.

“Fancy dress is all about acting out your alter egos. It dates back to the times of masked balls when you could be someone else without retribution,” she explained.

“I'm amazed by the number of men who like going to parties dressed as women.
They can be a transvestite in public and the next day wash the slate clean. It's a risk-free way of being someone you secretly want to be,” she added.

In more Dubai men-in-tights news, a man who flew from Dubai to Melbourne wearing women’s tights was arrested in Australia this week after sharp eyed customs officials noticed unusually large bulges beneath his waistband. Cops subsequently discovered two live pigeons stuffed down his tights and charged him with contravening wildlife regulations,” the BBC reported.


Article by Jonty Skrufff (

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US Visa Authorities Monitor Facebook

Hillary Clinton confirmed this week that US Immigration authorities are actively monitoring social networking sites to catch people slipping into America to work without permits.

“We've got to figure out how we're going to be smarter about using technology,” she told a meeting of US officials at the State Department.

“For everybody who is applying for a visa, you just should know that the State Department is on the watch here for Facebook,” she declared.

The warning could have chilling implications for visa-less DJs and journalists attending the upcoming Miami Winter Music Conference with those caught breaking the rules facing harsh treatment in Immigration detention centres.

Guardian freelancer Elena Lappin spoke of her experiences soon after being arrested after she told Immigration officials that she was visiting Los Angeles to carry out some interviews in 2004, resulting in her being locked up and treated like a hardcore criminal.

“Somewhere in central Los Angeles, about 20 miles from LAX airport, there is a nondescript building housing a detention facility for foreigners who have violated US immigration and customs laws. I was driven there around 11pm on May 3, my hands painfully handcuffed behind my back as I sat crammed in one of several small, locked cages inside a security van,” she wrote.

“I was to spend 26 hours in detention. My crime: I had flown in earlier that day to research an innocuous freelance assignment for the Guardian, but did not have a journalist's visa.”

DJ Fergie also found himself trapped in America’s notoriously violent prison system 10 years ago after a drunken prank involving snatching a number plate prompted cops to fling him in a tough Philadelphia jail.

"When I walked in, the other prisoners were all banging on the doors going
'Jerry, Jerry, Jerry', doing that Jerry Springer chant, though fuck knows why," Fergie recalled.

"The guards let me use the phone and as I was using it the prisoners then started chanting 'I'm a chick with a dick and I'm gonna' fuck you up the ass'. I was thinking 'Holy fucking shit, I think I'm in the wrong place here'."

"Next day they transported me to Philadelphia's main prison, The Curran-
Fromhold Prison and I had to wear an orange boiler suit, the lot- I couldn't fucking believe it," he said.

"You get put in a wing of the prison and once you're locked up, you've got to go through a seven day process, starting at the top of the prison in a cell with a big glass door and no beds, with ten prisoners in the cell. You go in one cell one day, then another the next and you just keep moving down the line until you get to the front desk. After seven days, you're then sent up to the Big House (main prison)," he added.

"A prisoner told me if you get put in Ward D don't go because you'll be fucked all night; you'll be raped non-stop", Fergie shuddered.

"I just remember the screw (prison officer) coming to get me on the 7th day thinking 'Fucking hell, my star's getting busted tonight'. But it turned out I'd been bailed out."  (‘Applying for a Visa? Someone Is Reading Your Facebook Page’, more)

Article by Jonty Skrufff (

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Image"One Country Two System" is the phrase used to describe Hong Kong's relationship with the Mainland. Within our society we can also see two systems – the ever-increasing division between the rich and the poor.  Nowhere is the more pronounced than in the Special Economic Zone.  Exhibition period 16 January 2009 to 28 February 2009 at Philia, 4 Arbuthnot Road, Central, Hong Kong.

Real Man’s Magazine For Men’s Men Only

Real Man Magazine launched on online version of their ‘man’s man’ 
periodical this week with a warning that ‘girlie men or the easily offended’ should stay away.

“If you’re not a real man, what you read within our magazine will be so foreign to you, and so outrageous, that you’re liable to fall out of your chair, curl up in the fetal position and start sucking your thumb. Consider yourself warned,” Real Man publisher Franklin Pierce boasted, “I set out to create a magazine for real men, by real men.”

Regular really manly features include ‘The Girlie Men of the Media’ (‘From Man-Crushes to Moisterizing, Women have Nothing on These Wimpy Girlie Guys’) and  an agony uncle offering advice on typical real men problems such as threesome etiquette.

“My boyfriend keeps talking to me about a threesome. I’m not sure what I should do. Please help,” one (presumably female) reader, ‘Sherry from Nashville’, begs.

“Dear Sherry: You know the idea excites you, but you’re afraid your boyfriend will become attracted to the other woman,” Real Man replies.

“The truth is that your boyfriend will actually become more attracted to you. After all, think about it. He has a woman who makes all of his fantasies come true. It’s hard to top that. So stop talking about it and do it already. And tell your boyfriend he owes me a box of cigars,” he adds. (‘Not for girlie men or the easily offended. 
May cause hair growth, increased testosterone and erections lasting longer than four hours. Read at your own risk . . .’)

Article by Jonty Skrufff (

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Hong Kong’s chic ‘urban lifestyle hotel’, The Fleming, is offering a Valentine's package for two including a romantic candlelit dinner and breakfast at just HK$1,688 from 7-15 February. 

Staying in a premium executive room or deluxe room, guests will enjoy a welcoming bottle of sparkling wine, a floral bouquet, home-made Valentine’s Day cookies, an aroma selection of choice, luxury L’Occitane bath amenities and a selection of romantic DVD movies.

Dinner for two at The Fleming's intimate restaurant Cubix is alone valued at HK$999 and makes the perfect setting for a candlelit dinner for two.

The set dinner starts with an appetizer combination of Serrano ham with white jelly, crab with avocado and King Prawn, followed by a cream of asparagus soup.

A refreshing champagne sorbet introduces main course choices of either grilled beef tenderloin or French duck confit with port wine sauce. A "sweet heart dessert" completes the romantic dinner, with petit fours and coffee or tea.

Along with continental breakfast, late check-out till 3pm is also included, subject to availability, and guests even have complimentary entry to nearby California Fitness.

In addition are complimentary extras that guests enjoy during every stay at The Fleming including complimentary local calls, daily newspaper and both wired and wireless broadband internet access.

The Valentines package is available on a first-come-first-served basis at the award-winning 66-room boutique hotel in Wan Chai and prices are subject to a 10% service charge.

About The Fleming

The Fleming opened two years ago in a quiet side-street in the heart of the Wan Chai business and entertainment district.

It was last year ranked on Condé Nast Traveller’s “Hot List 2007” as one of the world’s best new hotels, and as a finalist of SCMP/Harper’s Bazaar Style Awards Best Boutique Hotel of the Year 2007.

The boutique hotel targets international executives and frequent business travelers with affordable accommodation, up-to-date technology, contemporary facilities and a stylish address. Its key philosophy is exceptionally friendly and attentive personalised service.

It is a member of Sterling Hotels™, a collection of hotels with sterling personality from Preferred Hotel Group™.

To book the Valentine's package, please contact the Reservation Department at (852) 3607 2225.

The Fleming is at:

41 Fleming Road, Wan Chai, Hong Kong

Tel: (852) 3607 2288

Fax: (852) 3607 2299


(information provided by the pr company)

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