Show and sell

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 10 August, 1997, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 10 August, 1997, 12:00am

AM IMPRESSIVE queue is forming for Alfred Dunhill's charity fashion show at the Grand Hyatt where the guest of honour will be Princess Diana (right).

Tables close to the Princess' not only sold out immediately despite the $150,000 per plate but there's now a waiting list of 100.

tickets to tables at the Alfred Dunhill-Hospice Care charity fashion show where the guest of honour is Princess Di.

With that sort of demand the organisers suspect they could have charged far more for tickets for the September 25th event in aid of Hospice Care. One source even claims people would be willing to pay at least double the going rate to get a table near Diana.

Landing the princess was certainly a coup - credit goes to choreographer Alan Bailey who has worked with Diana in the past and started the ball rolling.

The prestigious night is bound to cost Alfred Dunhill a pretty penny. The British menswear house is putting on a catwalk show and paying Diana and her entourage to fly in. Her Mandarin Oriental stay, however, is being paid for by a 'personal friend' who apparently insists on having the princess as his guest while she is in Hong Kong. No prizes for guessing who that is.

nap of luxury The dismal turnout for the first exhibition organised by Comite Colbert - a Paris-based umbrella group overseeing top French fashion, accessories, jewellery and homeware brands, must have taken the company by surprise.

Only 20 of the 70 companies under Comite Colbert's wings have decided to take part in the promotion from October 31 to November 8 at Pacific Place.

Companies dutifully trotting along include Hermes, Dior, crystal maker Lalique, fashion house Leonard, Baccarat and Remy Martell.

Perhaps the cost of taking part has convinced Comite Colbert members like Chanel and Cartier to pass up the chance: display fees alone run up to US$50,000 (HK$389,000), not including the cost of sending company representatives.

More likely, most of these French brands who have opted out, including Van Cleef and Arpels, are so well-established in Hong Kong they don't need to showcase goods with a dozen other names.

silly season THE few people remaining in the city over the summer might like to snap up tickets for a fund-raising event by Future Hope, a charity caring for Calcutta's street kids.

Friday's bash at Viceroy's in Wan Chai also celebrates the 50th anniversary of India's independence. The organisers, a bunch of gweilo expats, promise Indian dancers and cuisine, plus other surprises. Thankfully, organisers abandoned plans to hold a 'best Ghandi look-alike competition'.

Funds raised from the $650 all-inclusive tickets go towards a new home in Calcutta for underprivileged children. If you can't go, make a donation anyway to: Future Hope, Level 31, HBI, HongKong Bank, 1 Queen's Road, Central, marked for the attention of Alison Zanardi-Landi.

Anybody planning to show up in Gandhi attire of brown shoe polish and bedsheet should be warned: it is really naff.

reach for the starz A local banker and trader have set up a new modelling/talent agency, Starz People HK Ltd, though they're leaving the limelight to their clients, refusing to give their names because for the moment the agency is a sidline.

The two have no experience in the business but have lured three bookers away from rival agency Elite - one of whom has brought top Hong Kong model Qi Qi with her.

The agency, located on Lyndhurt Terrace, aims to represent the 'new young faces' of the region's fashion and entertainment worlds on an exclusive basis and has already signed a number of girls, aged between 15 and 19. A company spokesperson said the search was on for a 'good-looking Chinese male Canto-pop singer' for a forthcoming product launch in Malaysia.

set sale Here's one sure way to beat the summertime heat - stay inside shopping malls, especially when sale prices are plummeting.

One shopper picked up a pair of Italian shoes for $50 - down from $1,295 - at Accessorie in Prince's Building, while at Gemma Kahng in Swire House, they are offering up to 90 per cent off though these clothes are so miniscule they 'wouldn't fit a broomstick', said one prospective buyer. Further reductions are promised at Joyce and Lane Crawford, among others.

So why the big sale? One fashion buyer for a chain of Italian stores said most retailers had overestimated the number of tourists in Hong Kong for the handover/summer, hence the drive to offload their excessive stock.