The Swank offered a stimulus package of a different kind on Thursday night. Bucking the trend for smaller, cheaper events, the high-end retailer and the Italian Trade Commission co-hosted a swanky dinner and fashion show at the Grand Hyatt called Italian Fantasy. Showing off the boutique's latest imports, Swank managing director David Hong Kin-hay was irrepressibly positive. 'Just like any other company in fashion, as well as all other industries, we have suffered due to the recession,' Hong said. 'But we are looking to expand our business into mainland China, opening our first flagship store in April this year.' When it comes to la dolce vita, Hong knows how to live it up. He's a well known Epicurean with a particular fondness for French food and wine, but sartorially, Hong sides with the Romans. 'Italian fashion is so much warmer (if you can call it that) in comparison to French fashion, just like the people.' As for fashion advice, Hong's tip is to watch out for Ermanno Scervino. Furthermore, 'don't become a fashion victim. Use clothes as an expression of who you are as an individual. That to me is having a real sense of style'. Speaking of style, the evening kicked off with Italian trade commissioner Romano Baruzzi addressing the crowd. Sensing he was droning on and the audience was growing restless, he said: 'I know you're all dying to check out the gorgeous models, so I'll stop here.' In the spirit of Valentine's Day though, Romano the romeo added: 'Although, I personally think the woman sitting next to me is the most beautiful woman in the world.'