Chengdu IFS challenge to Hong Kong
To mark its second anniversary, Chengdu IFS has launched the “All In Here – World Fashion Tour” to introduce the south-west China city’s latest initiative to be part of the global fashion scene – and a direct challenge to Hong Kong’s Harbour City on Canton Rd.
A key event of the Jinjiang Shopping Festival, the tour was organised by the Chengdu municipal government and Jinjiang district government in a move toward transforming the city into an international travel and shopping destination. It has been supported by trade representatives from France, Italy and Switzerland as well as Elle magazine.
Chengdu IFS opened in 2014, and with its architecture, brand collections and international-standard management has become a landmark in the city. As the first major world-class, high-end mixed development in urban Chengdu, it brings together about 300 top brands, 90 of which are new to the region. Multi-level flagship stores featuring international brands line Hongxing Road as part of the 530 metre. ‘International Fashion Walk’”.
Chengdu’s city fathers announced an action plan in July to build Chengdu into an international shoppers’ paradise as a key element of its development as a new first-tier city. Officiating at the launch ceremony of the “All In Here – World Fashion Tour” were Chengu Business Committee deputy-director Wen Feng, Jinjiang district deputy-head Wu Wenhui, Wharf Holdings vice-chairman Doreen Lee Yuk Fong and Wharf China Estates GM Christina Hau.
Speakers also included Italy’s consul-general Sergio Maffettone, France’s consul-general Olivier Vaysset, Milan’s general director of creative programs Alessandro Pollio Salimbeni, Swiss Chinese Chamber of Commerce GM Rolf Studer, and Elle China publisher Chris Hu.
Taking on a carnival atmosphere, the opening brought together art, fashion, tradition and style with performances including a mid-air fashion show, a parade of orchestral musicians and a VIP gala dinner at the Niccolo by Marco Polo. Guests at the dinner were surprised when Hong Kong artiste Carina Lau wore her own Anirac creations to present the brand’s first-ever catwalk show.
Since its “I Am Here” promotion in 2014, Chengdu IFS has increased its turnover and traffic flow by 50 per cent. The number of VIP members doubles last year, with sales up 50 per cent. As the first of five IFS projects in which Wharf Holdings has invested RMB 46 billion (US$6.9 billion), Chengdu IFS has set a solid foundation for the development of Chongqing IFS, scheduled to open next year as a boutique version of Harbour City, and also Changsha IFS, which will be the largest of the group.
Featuring panda sculptures as an external feature, Chengdu IFS has become a benchmark for urban fashion as well as a favourite spot for young people to meet.