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My headline doesn’t refer to the temperature of the liquid. For those of you (mainly outside Asia, the Middle East or Morocco) who haven’t heard about Bacha, I suspect you pretty soon will.
A disclaimer. I love Bacha. I loved Bacha from the first time I set my eyes on it at IFC Mall in Hong Kong. I love the colours (oh boy do I adore the colours – more orange than in a Florida orchard, if Hermès was a coffee brand it would be Bacha). I love the merchandising. I love the atmosphere. I love the sheer visuality.
Shall I go on? OK then. I love the staff uniforms, the service, the music (Andrea Bocelli’s Sogno was playing the last time I entered a store), the (most scrumptious in the world) croissants. Oh, and most of all, I love the coffee.
Make that coffees plural. As in more than 200 of them from 35 renowned producing countries around the world. I have tried many of them though I can’t help but keep returning to my runaway favourite – Sevilla Orange, a 100g, US$12.50 sojourn into coffee nirvana. Sinfully addictive, it fuses the zest of ripe orange with a full-bodied roast and just the right hint of sweetness.
On the eve of Lunar New Year I arrived home to find a surprise gift from Flora Lee (pictured right), the Hong Kong-based human dynamo and Founder of Blue Chip E&M International, which represents Bacha Coffee with several duty free retailers in Asia and the Middle East. She had heard of my weakness for Bacha (actually I call it a strength).
Seriously, I couldn’t have been happier if someone had sent me a case of Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc. And coming from this flying Kiwi, that is high praise indeed.
So I was delighted during a recent visit to Changi Airport, Singapore, to encounter not just one but two Bacha Coffee shops (Terminals 1 and 3) and to learn this week that the brand is now in all four terminals, having just opened in T2. During that visit I noted how packed the stores were, not just with shoppers but with travellers taking photos. An Instagrammable airport store. How about that?
I was equally delighted to hear the words of Taha Bouqdib, President & CEO of V3 Gourmet, which owns the brand (and TWG Tea), who said: “As the world reopens, part of our expansion strategy shifts towards enhancing the travel retail component of Bacha Coffee’s customer touchpoints globally.”
There you have it. Bacha Coffee coming to an airport near you. And I give you a (minimum annual) guarantee that Bacha Coffee will both walk and flow off the shelves in any airport where it lands.
Take a look at our images from the Changi T2 story. Or more particularly, look at the photos related to the brand’s Moroccan heritage at the foot of this page. Bacha Coffee is a storied brand and you can just about feel how much its custodians respect that story and enjoy telling it.
As I write this Blog I’m on Cathay Pacific 739 to Changi Airport, where I will transit onto Abu Dhabi for the inauguration of Abu Dhabi International Airport’s magnificent new Terminal A tomorrow.
Actually not just an inauguration. Also the birth of a new name as from tomorrow the airport will be renamed Zayed International, in honour of Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, Founder of the United Arab Emirates.
I am looking forward to that but not before I have stopped for a coffee and the ultimate accompaniment, a Bacha raspberry and cinnamon croissant. If there was a croissant heaven, I promise you this would be served at the gates.
*ABOUT BACHA COFFEE
Bacha Coffee specialises in 100% Arabica coffees, providing customers with a unique opportunity to travel the world through their cup by exploring harvests from over 30 of the most well-reputed coffee-producing countries.
Its story began at the medina of Marrakech, Morocco. Built in 1910, the spectacular Dar el Bacha palace – which means ‘House of the Pasha’ – was famous for its ‘Coffee of Arabia’, or Arabica as it is known today.
After the Second World War, the palace was closed and fell into decay. Eventually, after two years of restoration Dar el Bacha was reopened in late 2017 as the Museum of Cultural Confluences.
To restore the courtyard and adjacent private rooms of this listed historic monument, Bacha Coffee brought together numerous experts in their fields. Architects, historians and craftsmen worked together to preserve and revitalise the landmark. This included the installation of a spectacular glass roof, the decoration of every room, and placement of every chair and table.
After its reopening in Marrakech, Bacha Coffee rooted its headquarters in Singapore and expanded internationally, opening boutiques, coffee rooms and takeaway concepts in Asia, the GCC region and France. The BachaCoffee.com online boutique ships internationally and Bacha Coffees are distributed in luxury hotels, restaurants and airlines around the world.