A fascinating whistle-stop tour of Asia begins

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Martin Moodie
Martin Moodie is the Founder & Chairman of The Moodie Report.

photoI’m at a very busy London Heathrow Airport Terminal 3, about to depart on what promises to be an enthralling trip around North Asia.

Having escaped far from the madding crowd (above) to the Cathay Pacific lounge, I’m supping on a delightful Picpoul de Pinet (check it out, a great white wine discovery from the Languedoc) while plotting my next moves and reviewing the Heathrow experience (see below).

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Over the next two weeks I’ll be in Hong Kong, Taiwan (including Taipei and a visit to the Taiwanese-controlled Kinmen Islands just off Mainland China), South Korea, Beijing and Hainan Island.

It’s a full-on programme but I’m looking forward to every minute, starting with the official opening of Ever Rich Duty Free’s magnificent new Duty Free Plaza in Neihu, Taipei on Wednesday followed by the retailer’s 18th Anniversary Gala Dinner that night. Ever Rich and The Moodie Report will also be unveiling a special book that we have written to celebrate the retailer’s fantastic achievements to date, so it’s a particularly exciting occasion for me.

On Thursday we’re flying to the Kinmen Islands to look at Ever Rich’s plans to create an extraordinarily ambitious retail-to-leisure complex in this historic location.

In Hong Kong and Seoul I’ll be catching up with some key industry contacts before heading on to Beijing where TFWA and APTRA have attracted a terrific speakers’ line-up and delegate attendance for their first China Century conference. It should be a great affair, organised with TFWA’s trademark efficiency.

From there it’s on to Hainan Island and Sanya where I, and many suppliers, will be visiting China Duty Free Group to hear the retailer’s plans for its Haitang Bay retail mega-complex, set to include the world’s biggest duty free store.

If all that doesn’t get my journalistic pulse racing I’m in the wrong professsion. It’s going to be a journey of learning, of fun and of meeting friends old and new. What more could one ask?

RETAIL PLUSES AND MINUSES AT HEATHROW TERMINAL THREE

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[A high-profile promotion area, currently used by Jameson Irish whiskey, is practically the first thing passengers see after they exit security. After all that stress, travel retail needs to put on a welcoming face and this does the trick nicely]

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[But this doesn’t. WHSmith can – see its stunning London Gatwick offer – and should do better than this. Literally a case of the lights going out on quality travel retail. And look at that confectionery display…]

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[Maybe it should read ‘Snacks to go off’ – that’s not what I call banana appeal from the same WHSmith outlet]

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[I’m not so sure parts of the World Duty Free Group confectionery offer, above and below, are that inspiring either]

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 [But this is better. Nice use of World Duty Free’s Content-ainment screens by Patrón tequila]

new perfumes

[As is this – clean, bright simple images to communicate the availability of new launches]

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 [Interestingly, Estée Lauder chooses the liquor section to promote its offering…]

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[… While Rémy Martin opts for the tobacco department]

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[Not the greatest photo (iPhone on the run) but I am constantly struck by the sheer consistency and excellence of Chanel’s in-store presence, which enables it to always stand out from the occasional clutter of a big airport’s perfumes & cosmetics department (below)]

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[I love the big airport advertising panoramas at Heathrow. Here’s a prime example below.]

airport advertising please

[And finally… still for my money one of the world’s best airport speciality shops, World of Whiskies from World Duty Free Group]

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