As you may have guessed from the shopping, make-up and general splashes of pink on our site, the Sassy team is thus far an all-girl affair (although boys are very much welcome)! We’re happy to admit that all things manly aren’t exactly our speciality; we daren’t venture too deeply into the male psyche for fear of what we might find!
So, rather than give you a load of random selections for the Ultimate Christmas Gift Guide For Guys, we’ve instead recruited some of the coolest guys about town (it’s just a coincidence they look rather alike in their photos!) to tell you what’s on their festive wish-lists instead…
JJ Acuna is HK’s resident cool guy about town and we love his sophisticated and individual sense of style! His taste is impeccable, his wardrobe unimpeachable – so what better bloke to give us a few gift recommendations for the man in your life?
Check out his fab blog, www.Wanderlister.com, for art, design, lifestyle, fashion and trends reports from Hong Kong, Singapore, Manila and the Asian Region at large.
All my gift ideas are focused on making the man in your life unique and different from everyone else in the city – maintaining their own classic sense of style, but with an additional chic, stylish, and edgy twist…
1) Holiday Neck Warmers, $690
CoolDay, Sir, Shop 219, Silvercord, 30 Canton Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Hong Kong, 2376 0118
You really can’t go wrong with Neck Warmers as presents. The independent men’s label, CoolDay, Sir has a great collection of Merino Wool neck warmers this year. What I love about CoolDay, Sir is their fantastic bespoke-like aesthetic and great accessories, like these neck warmers, in plenty of different prints and patterns that go well with nice blazers, dress shirts and tailored jeans. Additionally no more than 10 items of each piece is produced… sometimes even less, which will make sure your gentleman’s look stays unique.
2) CIPHER ALPHA 2011 Lowtops, around $2600
Times Square Lane Crawford or Kapok, G/F St Francis Yard, Wan Chai, Hong Kong, 2549 9254
One of the things I love about Hong Kong is our never ending supply of creative entrepreneurs making it work in the fashion industry; lately, the amount of new designers and work is rising (and most of them have been featured on my blog at some point!). One of the brands I’ve been keeping an eye on is CIPHER, who have studios in Sheung Wan. They create really cool street hightop and lowtop shoes with the relaxed casualness yet formal edge that you can pull off wearing with either jeans or suiting. I don’t have a pair myself (yet!), but the ALPHA 2011 Lowtops would be the ones on my wishlist! I’d love a funky colour like Navy Blue.
3) Kenton Sorenson iPad Portfolio, $1700
Kapok, 3 Sun Street, Wan Chai, Hong Kong, 2520 0114
If someone gives me another iPad cover/case as a gift/giveway/present, I think I’ll go berserk. The only item piling up in my house besides free USB Sticks are the dozens of iPad cases I’ve been receiving since I started blogging! However, I do have to say, one gift I really wouldn’t mind getting is this amazing Kenton Sorenson iPad Portfolio now available at Kapok. The goods are made from handmade vegetable tanned leather from Sorenson’s own workshop in Cottage Grove, Wisconsin. Additionally, he cuts and sews each leather piece by hand. Each portfolio is oiled and conditioned in beeswax as well.
4) TK Garment and Supply City Bag, $4,800 The General Store
41 Gage Street, Shop H, Central, Hong Kong, 2851 8144
I can personally vouch for the quality of TK Garment Supply – I just grabbed one for myself the other day! I really do admire the fact that all their bags are up-cyled and made of components from other vintage bags, with all imperfections still in place. The artist in Japan that crafts these bags takes plenty of time to make sure the colours and materials are just right, without being too perfect. You will never find a bag like this in any other store, and since all bags are one of a kind and made of various recycled surplus ware, you will never find anyone carrying the same one as you either. It’s really something.
5) Tailor-made Kurashiki Betty Smith Jeans, price to order
Moustache, 31 Aberdeen Street, Sheung Wan, Hong Kong, 2541 1955
After setting up shop more than three years ago and making it into the New York Times and several other travel guides as a “must-go” tailor in HK, Moustache has now partnered up with the historic jeans brand, Betty Smith from Kurashiki, Japan to offer a one-of-a-kind experience in this city – to have jeans tailor-fit for the gents in your life. The jeans will be fitted personally by Moustache’s wonder duo, Alex and Ellis, in their shop-front on Aberdeen Street in the NOHO area; then after fitting, the jeans will be produced at the Betty Smith headquarters, one of the oldest denim factories in Japan.
6) A Day at The Men’s Spa, $900-2100
Gentlemen’s Tonic, Shop B47-8, B/F Landmark Men, Central, Hong Kong, 2525 2455
You will be surprised that in this day and age, there are still a lot of men out there who really do not take the time out of their day to de-stress, relax and just pamper themselves. For those guys who have tried a massage or two because they live in Asia, they understand that a quality periodic massage can actually help their stress levels, and relieve them of the day-to-day fatigue they get from the daily grind. I completely recommend a day at the spa for gents, and Gentlemen’s Tonic has plenty of quality options for him. Gift him with a spa package such as “The Hemingway” (great for hangovers) or “The Rubio” which is a Haircut, Wet Shave, Facial, Hand Treatment AND Swedish Massage. They also make the best Bloody Marys in town. He’ll be good as new after he’s done.
7) Kagool Parka Moss, $3,950
Kapok, G/F St Francis Yard, Wan Chai, Hong Kong, 2549 9254
I really love Kapok in the Star Street District because if you really are out of ideas for gifts for guys, you can just go there and there’s bound to be something that’s fit for your gentleman friend. I wear plenty of jackets and blazers… but people often forget that sometimes it rains like crazy in Hong Kong, and you’re left wearing a nice suit or jacket without any kind of decent protection from the rain. This Kagool Parka Moss is a rainproof cotton, zipfront jacket, that you can wear on top of your really dapper suit or any other outfit you will decide to wear for the day. It’s smart and makes for a very sensible gift… not to mention it will save you from Hong Kong’s wet weather!
8) Mutewatch, $2490
All Lane Crawford Stores
Mutewach is another one of those cool inventions from Stockholm that has made its way to Asian shores within the last few months. My style leans to a rather bespoke/vintage old school kind of look and lately, my watches have been silver and gold, really vintage… but the techie in me can’t resist the allure of Mutewatch, the world’s first touch screen watch. As an architect I love the simple and effortless form and no frills design of it. With just a tap of the flat surface, a touch screen lights up, then a swipe through activates the functions of a clock, alarm, and timer. The Mutewatch also features a built-in sensor that registers your movement and automatically adjusts the strength of the vibrations to fit. I currently do NOT have a Mutewatch, but it’s another thing I’ll be sticking on my list for Santa!
Jason Tse is one of HK’s top food bloggers, an occasional writer for Time Out and a self-proclaimed ‘guy-tai’! If you want truthful reviews on all the hottest new restaurants and scrummiest meals about town, head to www.jasonbonvivant.com… But first, check out his top foodie and lifestyle gift picks for what to buy your guy!
1) Philips Viva Collection AirFryer, around $2000 Fortress or Broadway, everywhere!
It’s quite difficult not to like fried food, be it fried chicken or French fries! The Philips’ Viva Collection Airfryer uses special technology to fry food without oil, meaning tasty dishes with 80% less fat; I can now have my fried food indulgence anytime without all the oil and grease (and cleaning up!) in the kitchen.
2) Blu Spa Men Conditioning Facial Polish $230 for 100ml Harvey Nichols, Landmark, Central
Believe it or not, winter in Hong Kong can be quite cold and dry. To keep our manly faces clean, smooth and hydrated during the holidays, Blu Spa Men Face Scrubs can be the simple solution. Even better for busy or lazy individuals – you only need to use it every other day!
3) Perrier-Jouët Champagne 200th Anniversary Gift Sets, $438-1368 Not on sale until December
When it comes to Champagne, it’s best shared – just like Christmas Love! Celebrating its 200th anniversary, Champagne Perrier Jouët recently came out with its bicentennial limited-edition Fleur Gift Set, consisting of a bottle of Belle Epoque 2004 and two specially designed flutes, inspired by the first ever Perrier-Jouet bottles. If you can’t get your hands on these bicentennial sets, more combinations are coming out closer to Christmas! Get ready for some champers!
4) Dyson Handheld Vacuum, around $2120 Fortress or Broadway, everywhere!
Home parties are a must during the festive season, but I’m not a fan of cleaning up all those peanuts and chips all over the floor! So let Dyson’s handheld vacuum come to the rescue! Functional yet cool to display around the house and with no need to worry about replacing bags or filters because Dyson uses none thanks to its Root Cyclone technology. What’s most important is how it never clogs and sucks strong… oh yes it sucks well! [Sassy girls: we hope buying this for our bloke would encourage them to actually do the cleaning once in a while!]
5) Casa Bugatti Diva Coffee Machine, $7950 Lane Crawford Home & Lifestyle, Level One, Pacific Place, 88 Queensway, Admiralty, 2118 3668
An ordinary cup of espresso isn’t enough to keep us awake from all the parties during the holidays… it has to be a cup of espresso with style! The Casa Bugatti Diva Coffee Machine is exactly what is needed; whatever or however you fancy your morning coffee, from a cup of strong espresso to soothing cup of latte, the Bugatti Diva delivers with a touch of luxury.
Stay tuned for Part Two, coming tomorrow!