From show time in Cannes to T time in Hong Kong

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

T galleria signs

As I begin this Blog, I’m five hours or 4,004 kilometres out of Hong Kong, just south of my regular ‘blogspot’ Novosibirsk and north of Ust-Kamenogorsk.

It’s 6a.m. in London time, 2a.m. Hong Kong time and goodness knows when Moodie time. At 35,000 feet I’m listening to the exquisite ‘silver violin’ of Nicola Benedetti as I kick back after the pressures of the past month or so and reflect on the rich experiences they have brought.

I’m making a mega-quick trip to Hong Kong for the launch of the second T Galleria by DFS concept store in a few hours, and then heading back to London the next day. It’s highly appropriate that DFS makes Hong Kong the second location (after Hawaii) for the unveiling of the T Galleria theme for the two locations represent the very genesis of the world’s leading luxury travel retailer.

T Galleria signs 2

 [Pictured above: DFS builds awareness of its new T Galleria by DFS concept with strong advertising in the arrivals zone of Hong Kong International Airport]

It promises to be an exciting day and I’m only hoping that the jet lag doesn’t get in the way of me enjoying every word and moment. It’s been a phenomenally busy few weeks, traversing the globe from Hong Kong to Hawaii, Germany to Guam, Italy to Incheon, and many others besides with a couple of short stop-offs at my dual homes of West London and Heathrow Airport.

And it hasn’t always been in comfort. Let me tell you how hard it is to write this Blog while squeezed into the back of the Cathay Pacific premium economy cabin, while the gentlemen in front of me does his best to turn his reclining seat into a flat bed.

And then (for those of you who are wondering about the absence of my Blog over the past week) there was the not insignificant matter of the TFWA World Exhibition in Cannes, from whence I returned on Friday.

After seven long days and nights on the French Riviera followed by two nights’ insufficient recovery in London, to quote the great Kris Kristofferson, ‘I woke up Sunday morning with no way to hold my head that didn’t hurt’.

Cannes was a great show this year and highly memorable for The Moodie Report team. Business-wise we launched ‘Moodie Live’, a direct feed of words, pictures, audio and video straight from the show to our website. “It was just like being in Cannes,” was my favourite reader response, coming from a TFWA World Exhibition veteran who missed the event for the first time in many years.

He was not alone. As of Friday afternoon, the visitor traffic had reached incredible levels – 7,831 unique users with an average (get this) 19.74 minutes on page and a total of 212,528 engaged user minutes (I did feel an anagram coming on but EUMs doesn’t exactly hit the right tone).

If you’d told me, then a technical dinosaur, 12 years ago that I would be able to stream live to web from Cannes a video interview of the Treasury Wine Estate team and me supping on Penfolds Grange Hermitage or indulging in a great glass of Amarone with the fabulous family-owned Masi of Italy, I would have accused you of having indulged in too much of both.

But so it came to pass. I shot something like 30 short videos on my iPhone last week and using our Moodie Live service, made them available to the world within seconds. Isn’t that simply cool? I just wish I could roll the clock back 20 years, to be a longer-term part of this amazing technological wave, which is every bit as profound in communication terms as the invention of the printing press in 1448.

We also soft-launched Airpinion.com, our new airport reviews, ratings and rankings consumer service. It’s our first foray into consumer publishing and very exciting it is too. We’ve asked our many friends in the industry to ‘road test’ it to iron out any glitches and to help build a body of reviews. In coming weeks we’ll be offering many great prizes to reviewers, including the chance to win a ticket in a US$1 million draw, courtesy of our first advertising partner, Dubai Duty Free.

I can’t think of a Cannes show I have enjoyed more in years. From Harry Diehl’s traditional dinner on the Friday; through our own MIS-HIT golf tournament the next day (pictured below, with a full report to follow in a subsequent Blog); to the opening cocktail, conference and exhibition, the event brought much in terms of buzz, business, friendship and fun.

MIS-HIT 2

[The Moodie International Superstars Honorary Invitation Tournament – The MIS-HIT – contestants line up for a photo-call before the traditional honorary first drive, this year played by event debutant, Peter Sant of Remy Cointreau, shown below ‘smoking’ his ball down the fairway]

Mishit peter

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mis-hit peter 3

mishit dd mm and bob

[Dermot ‘Divot’, Martin Moodie and ‘Captain’ Bob Wilby’ welcome guests to this year’s MIS-HIT]

The Frontier Awards I felt were much better this year (Editor Kristiane Henney spoke very well) but I still question how you can assess ‘Airport Retailer of the Year’ when entries range from a single location (Dubai Duty Free, LS travel retail Singapore) to retailer groups (Flemingo, The Nuance Group and, eventual winner, World Duty Free Group). Apples for apples it is not.

It’s time to grab a quick nap before landing in Hong Kong. For very soon it will be time for T.

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