PUBLISHED : Sunday, 31 October, 2010, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 31 October, 2010, 12:00am

Who started it? Eccentric Italian Luigino Bottos launched Bothos in Hong Kong in July last year after more than 30 years in the fashion industry, working as stylist, art director and designer for several Italian brands. The leather goods and accessories label is a manifestation of his vision, style and aesthetic, which attempts to fuse West with East. The Silk Road, which connected the two and along which trade, culture and ideas were exchanged, provided Bottos with rich inspiration, resulting in bags with unique functional shapes in beautiful, high-quality leather. Bottos has also set up a working studio he calls the 'Bothos elaborathory' - a physical and conceptual location promoting the constant evolution of ideas and innovation that is the label's essence.

Why we love it: because unisex is so in right now, the 'fe-male' (for both men and women) factor of Bothos is appealing. With an understated cool, it manages to look both worn and luxuri- ous. A breath of fresh air among generic luxury travel and handbags, this label is laid-back without being lazy. Meticulous detailing and fine workmanship show a leaning towards traditional 'maison' but are more modern and organic. The well-designed concept store includes artwork and installations, making for an aesthetic shopping experience.

What we'd pick: the grey Opium Road Trapu in buffalo leather (left; HK$4,200), with multiple pockets and a vintage military feel is great for travel. An elephant-coloured Boshay bag (above; HK$3,850), which is part of the Perfect Shape collection, is a versatile new-generation backpack.

Where can you get it? Bothos is at 20 Hollywood Road, Central, tel: 2526 9222;