Thursday, August 31, 2006


Boy, do they think up exciting names for new department stores in Taipei. After the A4 and the A9 and the like for Mitsukoshi, Sogo has come up with the name BR4 for its fourth and latest sibling, the big green hulk that is to open on top of the Zhongxiao-Fuxing MRT station on - write it in your diary - November 9.
Thanks to the United Daily News, we know what kind of brands will be available in the new supershop, and we also know that the Sogo and the Breeze Center are fighting out a surreptitious war trying to block their guest brands from opening up on the other side, so to speak.
Top brand names at the new Sogo will be Hermes and Chanel. The latter is already present just about everywhere you can think of, in the East Area's Mitsukoshi stores, and at the Regent Galleria under the Grand Formosa Regent Hotel for example. Hermes seems to have been more selective, with the Asiaworld Plaza on the corner of Nanjing and Dunhua as their major stronghold so far. Both brands are interested in the new Sogo because, sitting as it does on top of one of the Taiwanese capital's busiest public transport hubs, the location will greatly increase their visibility.
Other guests at the new Sogo are Paul & Joe, Jean Paul Gaultier, Vivienne Westwood, Valentino, jewelry stalwarts Georg Jensen and Hearts on Fire, and popular face and body care rivals The Body Shop and L'Occitane en Provence.
On the gossip side, Coach will apparently hold on to its Breeze Center location, relinquishing a chance to enter Sogo.
The big unknown, according to the United Daily News, is Louis Vuitton. While you can also find the LV superlogo products on Dunhua South Road, Chungshan North Road and at Taipei 101, apparently the French fashion brand is still making up its mind which side of the department store conflict it will be taking: Breeze's or Sogo's.
Turning away from the new Sogo, let's again make amends for our past oversight, and mention that the renovated Missoni has reopened next to the Regent, with a new brighter white and deep orange design, and the familiar colorful knits.
The fashion event of the coming weekend though, must be Saturday night's major Gucci Autumn and Winter show at the Warner Village. Like me, you'll have to stand outside and gawk at the celebrities and hope to see some of the new Gucci they're wearing. Or you just wait until Sunday to read the papers.


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