Friday, February 1st, 2013
If you know your Chloe from Chanel and Marchesa from Missoni; pronounce Givenchy: ‘jhee-von-shee’; drop the ‘H’ in Hermès; and revere Anna Dello Russo as much as Anna Wintour – then we have a guide for you. Sartorialists rejoice, as we take you around the world for a year of fashion weeks.
The Big Four
New York City
Autumn/Winter: 7–14 February 2013, and Spring/Summer: September 5–12 2013
Every February and September the world’s fashion-forward converge on the Lincoln Centre, in Manhattan’s artsy Lincoln Square, to witness America’s most iconic and up-and-coming designers debut their latest collections at New York Fashion Week. This February, more than 75 designers will showcase their handiwork at official events, with names like Charlotte Ronson, Zac Posen, Badgley Mischka, Vera Wang, Ralph Lauren and Diane von Furstenberg all taking on the runway. Fashion zealot or not, fashion week is a great time to visit The Big Apple, as the city is abuzz with quintessential New York City energy and high drama.
Getting there: Together with partner airlines Delta Air Lines and Virgin America, Virgin Australia operates flights to New York City, from Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne.
Where to stay: ON THE AVE complements fashion week’s vibe, with stylish and contemporary facilities just 15 minutes’ walking distance from the Lincoln Center.
Autumn/Winter: 15–19 February 2013, and Spring/Summer: September 13–17 2013
Sporting sore heads from wrap parties, the fashpack moves across the Atlantic, without even a day’s reprieve, to Somerset House for London Fashion Week. Following firmly on the coattails of NYC, London showcases twice a year (February and September), with more than 5,000 visitors – ranging from buyers to TV crews and journalists and A-listers – in attendance. This February more than 60 catwalk shows and 30 presentations and salon shows fill the official schedule, while 45 shows will take place off schedule. Iconic UK names like Vivienne Westwood, Paul Smith and Burberry will flaunt their wears alongside avant-garde heroes like Christopher Kane and Henry Holland, and Australian innovators like sass & bide, Antipodium and Dion Lee.
Getting there: Together with partner Etihad Airways, Virgin Australia operates flights to London from Sydney and Melbourne.
Where to stay: Situated in the heart of London’s vibrant Covent Garden, Kingsway Hall Hotel offers comfortable and deluxe accommodations, a mere 9 minutes’ walk from all the action of London Fashion Week.
Women’s Fashion, Autumn/Winter: 20–26 February 2013, Spring/Summer: 18–24 September 2013, Men’s Fashion, Spring/Summer: 22 – 26 June 2013
Fashion is such big business in Milan that womenswear and menswear are dedicated separate week-long events. This year’s men’s event has already passed with names like Prada, Giorgio Armani and Dolce & Gabbana heralded as standouts. Come late February, the world’s biggest names are set congregate in the Italian hub once again to showcase their take on women’s runway and ready-to-wear looks. All the big Italian heavy-hitters will be present – including Gucci, Versace and Valentino, to name a few – alongside the world’s most innovative up-and-coming labels. Considered to be the most intrinsically stylish city in the world, Milan Fashion Week is highly revered and respected by those in the fashion know.
Getting there: Together with partner airlines Etihad Airways, Virgin Australia operates flights to Milan from Sydney and Melbourne.
Where to stay: On a private street, situated in the cultural and commercial heart of a city, the Bulgari Hotel (of Italian design house fame) is one of Milan’s hottest locations during Fashion Week.
Ready-to-Wear, Autumn/Winter: 26 Feb–6 March 2013, Spring/Summer: 24 September – 2 October 2013, Men’s Fashion, Spring/Summer: 26–30 June 2013, Couture, Spring/Summer: 1–4 July 2013,
Paris is the fashion capital of the world, and consequently Paris Fashion Week is the hottest ticket item on the fashion calendar. Couture Week has just past, and saw Kanye West sit front row at Lanvin, Jessica Alba don all black for Christian Dior, Olivia Munn support Donatella Versace, and Diane Kruger pull off Parisienne chic at the Chanel. Ready to Wear womenswear is next on the agenda, and will see France’s most iconic fashion houses – such as Isabel Marant, Balmain, Céline, Dior, Chloe, Louis Vuitton and Chanel – inundate the Carrousel du Louvre. Fashion Week is an exciting time to be in Paris, at the city’s boulevards come alive with all things fierce and fabulous.
Getting there: Together with partner airlines Etihad Airways, Virgin Australia operates flights to Paris from Sydney and Melbourne.
Where to stay: A favourite of Alber Elbaz and Carine Roitfield, and located just around the corner from Vogue Paris, and a mere 15 minutes’ walk from the Louvre, the Hotel De Crillon is a hot Fashion Week haunt.
Closer to Home
Autumn/Winter: 17–23 March 2013, Spring/Summer: October 2013
A frontrunner in all things progressive and out-of-the box, Tokyo has been steadily growing a reputation as a fashion powerhouse. Just weeks after Paris, the adventurous of the fashion set move from Europe to the east, to witness the radical innovations of Tokyo Fashion Week. Last season’s event saw intricate neon and leather laser cut garments, models caring manikins wearing dresses, and toe print textiles on pantsuits, command the runway and wow crowds. This March a who’s-who of Japanese designers – such as Alice Auaa, Beautiful People, G.V.G.V., Yasutoshi Ezumi, A Degree Fahrenheit and Yoshio Kubo – will line up at the Hikarie shopping tower in the trendy precinct of Shibuya. The focus will be just as much on fun and fantasy as it is on fashion.
Getting there: Together with partner airlines Singapore Airlines, Virgin Australia operates flights to Tokyo from Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne, Darwin, Adelaide and Perth.
Where to stay: Featuring an elegant decor, pleasant ambience and comfortable accommodations, just 5 minutes’ walk from Hikarie, Shibuya Excel Tokyu is the perfect base for Tokyo Fashion Week.
Annual Event: April 8–12.
Australia’s biggest fashion event, Australian Fashion Week (Mercedes Benz Fashion Festival Sydney), has been responsible for launching names like Ksubi, Josh Goot, sass & bide, Romance Was Born, Dion Lee, and a whole host of prominent antipodean fashion labels. In recent years the event has also garnered attention from international celebrities like Whitney Port, Dita Von Teese and Erin Wasson, as well as prominent bloggers like Susie Bubble, Bryan Boy, Rumi Neely and Elin Kling. This year’s event features a new venue (Eveleigh’s Carriageworks) and new dates (moved forward a month), and is set to again showcase the best of Australia’s home-grown talent.
Getting there: Virgin Australia operates flights to Sydney direct from all Australian capital cities and most major regional ports, and from international destination such as Auckland, Christchurch, Wellington, Los Angeles, Abu Dhabi, Nadi and Bali.
Where to stay: Nestled between the Opera House and Harbour Bridge, with water literally lapping at its edges, Park Hyatt offers the ultimate Sydney experience, just 15 minutes’ drive from Carraigeworks.
Friday, September 14th, 2012
To inspire you and help you discover the world in all its glory, we have scoured the globe to fashion a series of World’s Top lists.
This week we bring you a snapshot of the world’s top boutique hotels.
Located in the heart of New York City’s fashionable SoHo neighbourhood, the SoHo Grand Hotel is one of the world’s most sought-after boutique hotels. Flaunting a luxuriously chic interior, adorned with rich fabrics and textiles, and fostering a renowned party culture, the SoHo Grand offers an authentic taste of Manhattan’s hip downtown scene. The hotel’s custom rooms and suites reflect the history and character of the neighborhood, while its elegant restaurant and trendy bars have been known to attract and inspire creatives and celebrities.
Stay at SoHo Grand Hotel: Our hotel partner, HotelClub offers great deals for SoHo Grand Hotel.
Flights to New York City: Together with partner airlines Delta Air Lines and Virgin America, Virgin Australia operates flights to New York City, from Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne.
Inhabiting a magnificent mansion in the posh London suburb of Kensington, The Milestone Hotel blends luxury and comfort. Employing two staff members to every guest, the hotel is renowned for its exceptional service – so much so that readers of Condé Nast Traveler voted its butler service the best in London. Overlooking Kensington Gardens and Palace, the Grade II listed, five-star hotel exudes historic Victorian grandeur. Every room is decorated with individual style, and is a grand statement of colour and style.
Stay at The Milestone Hotel: Our hotel partner, HotelClub offers great deals for The Milestone Hotel.
Flights to London: Together with partner airline Etihad Airways, Virgin Australia operates flights to London, from Sydney and Melbourne.
More-is-more at Hong Kong’s The Luxe Manor. Built with post-modern sensibilities, stepping foot in this boutique hotel is like entering an extraordinarily over-the-top parallel universe. The lobby flaunts mosaic floors, lipstick red armchairs and garish chandeliers. Its suites showcase a weird and wonderful array of themes, ranging from Safari to Nordic. While onsite bar, Dada Bar steps things up even further, taking inspiration from the king of surrealism, Salvador Dali. An intriguing celebration of the abstract and the extraordinary, The Luxe Manor is surreal yet strangely comforting.
Stay at The Luxe Manor: Our hotel partner, HotelClub offers great deals for The Luxe Manor.
Flights to Hong Kong: Together with partner airlines Singapore Airlines and Virgin Atlantic, Virgin Australia operates flights to Hong Kong, from Sydney, Adelaide and Melbourne.
Serenity meets sophistication in Bali’s trendiest enclave, the W Retreat and Spa. Located on the beachfront at Seminyak – a hub of chic restaurants, clubs, fashion and art – the boutique lifestyle hotel provides for a glitzy and vibrant escape. Belonging to the world-famous W Hotels collection, the W Bali is rich in design, luxury, and experience. Hosting more than 200 villas (many enjoying spectacular views of the Indian Ocean) and surrounded by fragrant lush tropical gardens, the W is a welcoming retreat, tucked away from the hustle and bustle of Kuta.
Stay at W Retreat & Spa: Our hotel partner, HotelClub offers great deals for W Retreat & Spa.
Flights to Bali: Virgin Australia operates flights to Denpasar daily, direct from Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne and Perth.
Boasting a contemporary interior and an enviable Melbourne location, The Blackman is a creative and inspired luxury boutique hotel, in hot demand. Built within and above Saint Kilda Road’s historic Airlie Mansion, the hotel belongs to Melbourne’s Art Series – a collection of unique premises which take design inspiration from Australia’s artistic greats. Each suite in The Blackman is filled with light, adorned with original Charles Blackman artworks and prints, appointed with up-to-the-minute comforts and technology, and focused around an Art Series Signature bed – which is said to be “what dreams are made of”.
Stay at The Blackman: Our hotel partner, HotelClub offers great deals for The Blackman.
Flights to Melbourne: Virgin Australia operates flights to Melbourne daily, direct from Australian and New Zealand capital cities and from L.A., Nadi and Denpasar.
Wednesday, April 27th, 2011
With the Royal Wedding just days away and the country abuzz with all the new developments surrounding the 2012 Olympics there’s no better time to start organising your trip to sunny London.
Fly V Australia (along with our partner Etihad) and arrive at the wedding in style!
With such an eclectic mix of old and new, London is the place to play tourist. First things first, start your day with a traditional English breakfast of fried eggs, bacon, sausages, fried bread, mushrooms, baked beans and cup of tea. If that doesn’t get your heart started (or stop it completely) nothing will. The Breakfast Club cafes are in three (almost four) London locations and are the perfect place to try this menu staple.
The London Eye
Find your bearings with a tour on one of London’s famous big red buses and work out the lay of the land. Similarly the London Eye situated by the River Thames offers a bird’s eye view of the city and beyond.
The Tower of London (See photo at top of page) is a UNESCO world heritage listed site that simply can’t be missed. Entertaining guides provide an interesting and sometimes unbelievable insight into the buildings colourful history and the Jewel House is home to the most dazzling collection of (functional) crown jewels in the world. With the upcoming nuptials, be on the lookout for the ‘in use’ signs and speculate how they’ll look on Prince William and Kate!
Next, immerse yourself in a little celebrity (if the tabloids haven’t already got your attention) with a visit to Madam Tussauds. Rub shoulders with rock, pop, sporting, political, historical, fashion, Bollywood and Hollywood royalty – and a few monarchs for good measure! Located at Marylebone Road, it’s an easy walk from the Baker Street Station.
Borough Markets in London
My absolute favourite thing to do in London is to visit the Borough Food Markets. Take the tube to London Bridge Station and the market is just a few minutes away. Start at neighbouring Café Monmouth for a cup of London’s best coffee. Find a spot at the long wooden tables and you’re in for a treat. £2 will get you all you can eat house made bread, butter and jam – which in my opinion is the cheapest and best thing you can do in London. After you’ve had you fill, stroll across to the markets and spend a couple of hours savouring (and photographing) everything from pork pies and cider to English preserves and French pate. Open Thursday through Saturday this foodie heaven offers an impossible variety of fresh seasonal and organic food. Do not pass go, without a morning spent here.
Oxford Street is the place to go for an English retail fix. Spanning one-and-a-half miles long, it’s the quintessential London shopping experience and reputedly the busiest strip in the world. A department store mecca, everything and everyone from Marks & Spencer, Debehams, House of Fraser, John Lewis to 21st century shopping encounter, Selfridges will keep you busy for hours. It’s also home to affordable fashion favourites H & M, Zara and Topshop.
Prince William and Kate Middleton
Buy a punnet of fresh English raspberries while you work your way through the Portobello Markets in Notting Hill. Held every day except Sunday, the markets sell everything from bric-a-brac, food and vintage clothes to antiques and collectables. The street itself is a haven for fashion, art and lifestyle boutiques and a great place to people watch over coffee and cake. Get off the Tube at Notting Hill Gate Station and follow the crowds.
Best of British!
With fares this low they won’t last long. Now is the time to book your trip to London with V Australia and our partner Etihad and visit the sights, maybe walk down the route where the future King & Queen travel on their wedding day!
Flight from Sydney to London from $2025* – Available for a limited time only – visit the vaustralia.com website for more details