16 August 2019

Around The World In 25 Days

Melbourne – Rajasthan – Delhi  – London – Singapore – Hong Kong – Bangkok – Singapore – Melbourne. July was an absolute whirlwind.

Kicking off the month with a visit to Six Senses, Fort Barwara in Sawai Madhopur where things have kicked up a notch, furniture prototyping has commenced, and the stunning lime plaster shades which celebrate the colours of times past at the 600 year old fort are being applied. From Rajasthan, I headed to Delhi where I was able to visit some of our friends, colleagues, manufacturers and suppliers. With some new projects now live in Mumbai, we are looking for fresh, exciting materials locally and also strengthening our existing relationships in India.

With a quick (13 hour) hop across several ponds, I was in London where I was greeted with some rare British sunshine and absolutely no rain! Not only did I have the chance to catch up with friends and family, I also found an abnormal amount of my clients and colleagues from Singapore, New York and Hong Kong enjoying their ’summer in Europe’. Its incredible how small the world can feel sometimes!

Next stop, Singapore – my home from 2011-2014 – where I had the chance to meet some new owners and operators as well as catch up with the wonderful people from my Singapore days. Singapore is feeling incredibly comfortable and stable, as expected, and although there doesn’t seem to be a great deal of new construction happening locally, there are a lot of companies based in Singapore who are looking to take the world by storm and considering some refreshing operational ideas. In contrast to the calm of Singapore, was my fifth stop, Hong Kong, where thankfully the protests held off for a few days and didn’t prevent me from getting around the city. As you will likely know, things have progressed substantially in Hong Kong over the past couple of weeks and its sad to hear that our friends operating in the world of F&B and retail are struggling with occupancy and tourism dropping substantially. We however, are still optimistic at DBQ, and I was lucky enough to spend a couple of days with our friends at Samantha Eades Design pitching some collaborations which we cant wait to get started on! Watch this space!

From Hong Kong, I flew over to Bangkok – my home from 2014-2016 – where I couldn’t wait to get stuck into some Tom Kha Gai. I spend some time catching up with some wonderful colleagues and clients and reigniting some design relationships, as well as sailing down the Gulf of Thailand and forming some new friendships.

I like to treat my travels as ‘international study tours’ between the meetings, and I was very fortunate to have the chance to visit a handful of newly opened hotels in Hong Kong and Bangkok including the St Regis Hong Kong by Andre Fu, the Rosewood Hong Kong by Tony Chi, The Rosewood Bangkok by Avroko and Celia Chu, and the Park Hyatt Bangkok by Yabu Pushelberg. I strongly believe that unique design personality comes from the ability to draw inspiration from diverse cultural and experiential influences, and the experiences we gain and places we visit, inspire us, teach us lessons and form a foundation of what our future properties should or shouldn’t become and how we create them.

I am back in Melbourne now brimming with enthusiasm and inspiration and the team and I cant wait to share our upcoming projects in the near future!

Hayley – Principal Director, Design BY QU

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