Light show gives hair mogul idea for Brisbane's crowning glory

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 30 July, 2008, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 30 July, 2008, 12:00am

Australian hair mogul Stefan Ackerie has been back in the city for more than two weeks. He's been organising new hair treatment and cutting sessions presented by Il Colpo and Gold Coast beauty experts to give his large contingent of Aussie hairstylists a taste of local follicular fashion. 'We have about 250 or 260 here,' the Brisbane-based king of curls said of the number of his staff in town. 'Hong Kong is now a style capital to rival London and Paris.'

Ackerie has been bringing his troupes to be trained in the latest trends for over five years. He makes Hong Kong part of his regular trips to the mainland to inspect the factories making his curlers, straighteners and other supplies. Next week he'll be in Guangzhou to look over the custom furnishings for his restaurant, Jojo's, back in Australia.

During his current stay, the view of the skyline's nightly 8pm light show from his Sheraton Hotel room has also inspired him. Ackerie now wants to create a similar visual spectacle back home on a landmark he owns. The 88-metre Skyneedle in Brisbane was built for the 1988 World Expo. When the city was considering selling, dismantling and moving it to Japan, Ackerie stepped in and bought the building. 'I want to do it like the lights on Central Plaza but I want it 10 times bigger. It'll be great. I want it for Queensland's 150's anniversary celebration next year. [In Brisbane] it won't have to compete with all the lights from buildings like here and I want the light show to appear every night, too.'