Grand Halloween Tradition at the Wyndham

The Wyndham Grand, Futian, doesn’t do events by halves, and Halloween this year was no exception. The Grand Kitchen, the Wyndham’s buffet restaurant, was host to the Halloween Buffet Dinner. No word could be used to describe it other than ‘spectacular’.

As soon as the elevator doors opened on the third floor, you were greeted by Halloween decorations and spooky sounds. Cobwebs were draped over light fittings; staff were dressed in cloaks and witches hats, with the occasional addition of scars, vampire teeth or dripping blood; skeletons and skulls caught your eye in every direction.

The most remarkable aspect was the amount of effort that had obviously gone into the Halloween themed food. Even the bread was shaped like ghostly faces!

From 6pm to 9.30pm over 100 people came to spend Halloween eating sumptuous savouries and delectable desserts. Appetizers included a selection of Asian-style and Western-style salads, as well as ‘design-your-own’, sushi, sashimi and an array of imported seafood – the Grand Kitchen’s specialty.

Everything from New Zealand scallops to oysters from Iceland, Alaskan salmon to South American shrimp, was available for the guests’ delight.

At the opposite side of the restaurant, a wide variety of Asian and International dishes greeted guests.

Alongside the usual dishes such as beef brisket, braised noodles with seafood, fried sole fish with cream sauce, Chinese BBQ chicken and pork, and Guangdong-style soup, the food was accentuated by Halloween specials.

A ‘Terrorist Mummy’ of BBQ pork rib with sausage was the centrepiece, complete with ketchup blood, laid ready and waiting to feed hungry guests.

The pièce de résistance of the whole experience was – without a doubt – the desserts. This is where the Halloween theme really came alive – or undead! A human brain, a bleeding heart and a dismembered arm were proudly displayed, surrounded by tombstones, spiders and skulls.

Luckily they were filled with delightful flavours like chocolate cake with raspberry and cream filling, almond cake or Swiss roll. They looked so good people were almost afraid to eat them!

As well as these masterpieces there were over 30 different types of dessert, all designed and made by the bakery chef.

Eyeballs filled with chocolate truffle and nuts, honeycomb witch hat cupcakes, Halloween sugar cookies, sweet witch poisoned soup, 3D spider puffs, fruit tarts in mini white chocolate coffins and chocolate spiders were just a few of the petrifying puddings on offer.

The treats didn’t stop at food either. Free-flow soft drinks and beer were also included with the buffet, along with a complimentary glass of wine and exclusive Halloween mocktails.

Free face paint, stick on scars and wounds, hats and masks were provided for anyone who wanted to embrace their inner scariness.

To top off a spectacular evening, what Halloween celebration would be complete without a pumpkin carving competition!

Eight guests took their places in front of fresh pumpkins, ready and waiting for life to be carving into them. Two children joined in, although after a while it became clear that their parents were doing most of the work as the children decided to go elsewhere and play!

After intense concentration and hard work from the participants, the restaurant manager chose a winning pumpkin. All pumpkin carvers received a Wyndham Grand mug as a special gift and the winner also received an exclusive bottle of house wine. The decision was very difficult to make as a lot of thought and effort had gone into every Jack o’lantern.

This was the third consecutive year the Grand Kitchen has put on a special Halloween Buffet and Mask Party, ever since the Wyndham Grand opened in 2015. If you can’t wait until next October, the international seafood buffet is also available every day for lunch and dinner!

From Monday to Thursday the buffet is RMB268, and RMB318 between Friday and Sunday. All diners are also welcome to enjoy one complimentary glass of wine. Prices are subject to 10% service charge and 6% VAT.

Address: 3rd Floor, Wyndham Grand Hotel, 2009 Caitian Road, Futian, Shenzhen (深圳温德姆至尊酒店三层,中国广东省深圳市福田区彩田路2009 )

Tel: +86 755 8299 8888 (EXT 8560)

Introducing Verdicchio di Jesi: The Italian White Wine That Everyone Is Talking About

You know, they don’t call Italy the beautiful country for nothing. Whether it’s the Da Vinci’s Mona Lisa, Vivaldi’s Four Seasons, or the Sistine Chapel; beauty can be found everywhere in Italy.

Perhaps no more so than in its wine, whose export sales amounted to USD35.5 billion in 2017. And where once Italy was renowned for its classic reds, it is now in white wines where the biggest growth can be found. Leading that growth is the Verdicchio dei Castelli di Jesi white wine.


Verdicchio: Fifty Years Of Wine Making Excellence


This year a conference was held to mark the 50th anniversary of Verdicchio dei Castelli de Jesi DOC. The event took place in the beautiful Pergolesi Theatre in the heart of Jesi. The theatre is one of the few opera houses still remaining in Italy from the late eighteenth century period. It was on such an occasion and at such a venue that it was revealed that in the past year, Italy sold more white wine than any other country in the world.

A few years ago, such a statement would not seem possible, but within the last 10 years, the production of white wine by Verdicchio has exceeded all expectations; they have tripled the average area of hectares planted, renewed over ¼ of the vineyards, while bottling outside the area has fallen by 75% and exports have grown by almost 50%.

This has led to Verdicchio establishing itself as a brand known for its high quality, both in Italy and across the world. Recognition has arrived in the form of awards from Italian wine guides, for both their red and white varieties.


White Wine: The World’s Fastest Growing Popular Wine


Red is the world’s most popular wine, representing 55% of all global sales of wine, but white is growing in popularity, especially among consumers aged 40 and under. In Italy, the trend is even more pronounced. White wine sales in the country rose an incredible 14% in the past five years, while red wine sales increased by 7% in comparison.

During the 50th anniversary of the Verdicchio dei Castelli de Jesi DOC, David Summerland of International’s Wine Monitor revealed several fascinating facts about the growth of white wine. People preferred to drink red at home, while when they went out to socialize they would drink white. This was due to the drink being perceived as an easy drink compared to a red, in particular with women aged under 40.


White Wine Opens New Exciting Markets


Summerland went on to explain that the growth in the white wine market was mainly driven by young people and young women in particular, who represented a good engine for the market. In general, women’s consumption of wine has increased compared to men’s, which partially explains the surge in white wine sales in recent years. In particular, in Italian white wine.

Last year, Italy’s global sales of white wine were worth 1.287 billion Euros, the highest in the world, surpassing France’s total amount of 1.267 billion Euros.


Award Winning Wines


Italian wine has grown so popular because it comes from autochthonous grapes grown in special regions, often referred to as native varieties. Summerland explained that Verdicchio, native to the Marche, was a textbook example of this because of versatility and capacity to age well.

The Marche has worked hard to improve its vineyards. In the past decade, more than a quarter of the Jesi DOC’s 2,190 hectares of vineyards have been renovated. Around 100 million Euros have been spent on promoting and introducing organic growing methods.

The return of investment has included the highest accolades. In the past four years, no other white wine has appeared in as many international wine guides as the Verdicchio dei Castelli di Jesi white wine.

Last year, Verdicchio received the title of best white in Italy for the fourth year running. At this year’s Decanter World Wine Awards, 15 Verdicchio wines received a score of more than 90, compared to only four Verdicchio wines in 2016.


A Best Seller Worldwide


Around 18 million bottles of Verdicchio dei Castelli de Jesi DOC are sold each year, half of which are sold internationally. The top five export markets are the US, China, Germany, the Netherlands, and Belgium. International sales exports are worth approximately 52 million Euros, which represent a growth of about 50% in the past decade.

It’s clear that Italian white wine is going from strength to strength, and Verdicchio dei Castelli di Jesi white wine is leading that growth.

For more: (www.stesoph.com)

New Beginnings- an Exciting Time at Green Oasis School

The ancient Chinese philosopher Laozi wrote, “A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” The educational journey for our students at Green Oasis School is no different. It starts from the moment children enter our classes to the day when they leave; hopefully a little wiser, more knowledgeable and confident to face the next step on the journey their lives will take.

It is a fact that schools are only a very short part of people’s lives, and yet those 12 or 13 years are some of the most significant. The experiences, opportunities, confidence and skills they learn through their education, be they academic or social, which will ultimately mold them into the adults they will become in the future.   Of course it is also how students use these opportunities and it is the hope of every educator that our students use them wisely with thoughtfulness and above all share our passion for ensuring they reach their full potential.

Although we are all ultimately responsible for our own journey as teachers, we know we are also responsible for guiding our students to ensure they make the right choices in life. This is why at Green Oasis School, our Vision is so important to us. Our most important work is to ensure students are educated, nurtured and inspired to face the journey they will take both at school and when they leave. Part of that is to accept that mistakes are part of the life we will have and should not be avoided as they are often what make us stronger. It is how we recover from these mistakes that are most important. Part of our responsibility at GOS is to ensure students have the tools and the support to do just that. Mel Gibson, the movie actor has had plenty of ups and many downs, his quote I believe sums up the need to understand that a mistake is not a failure, but a chance for a new and maybe exciting beginning. He writes:

“It’s a wise man who understands that every day is a new beginning, because boy, how many mistakes do you make in a day? I don’t know about you, but I make plenty. You can’t turn the clock back, so you have to look ahead.” —Mel Gibson

Looking ahead is exactly what we must all do. Mistakes are part of life; we learn from them, they can make us resilient and more determined. Here at Green Oasis we understand that students are growing, changing and open to new experiences. It is part of our Vision to ensure they are nurtured and learn to make choices and decisions that are the best for them. We also know that mistakes are inevitable and not the ‘end of the world’, thus they need to see them as a learning tool to improve and grow as young adults.  At GOS it is important to us that we do nurture our students, guide them and give them the support they need throughout their time with us through formal classes and during the day through counseling and from teachers.

Green Oasis School is aware that in our 18 year history, we have had many students through our doors. It is our hope that they have all been inspired to become the adults we knew they could. As we approach our 20th Anniversary, we would be keen to hear from alumni and read their stories. We invite our former students to contact the school through email, so we can continue to celebrate your achievements and successes in life.

Helen Swan 

Principal

Scan below to subscribe:

 

Place Name: Green Oasis School Shenzhen 深圳市福田区城市绿洲学校
Place Address: No 4030, Shennan Middle Road, Tianmian, Futian District, Shenzhen 广东省深圳市福田区田面村深南中路4030号
Place Phone: +86 (755) 8395 9000

Duke’s Wine & Grill: Possibly The Classiest Spot In Town

What makes a classy restaurant? Well, there is the understated décor and stately furniture. There’s the number of bottles in the wine cellar. There’s the grade of the steak and where the oysters come from.

But there are also those small, almost indefinable, details. The way the light illuminates the room. The way the waiter appears and disappears as if they are reading your mind. The way the music slowly lures you in.

Rather than try defining what makes a classy restaurant, it might be easier for me to give you an example. Allow me to introduce you to Duke’s Wine & Grill at The Langham, Shenzhen.

They say first impressions are important. This is equally true when going to a new bar or restaurant as it is when meeting someone, if not more so. Well, when I first entered Duke’s Wine & Grill, the restaurant certainly made a strong impression.

My eye was drawn from the classic leather couches and tub chairs to the contemporary art adorning the walls to the high ceilings. Duke’s was lively and was already brimming with the kind of atmosphere you associate with a jazz bar.

I took a table and the manager offered to introduce me to the wine cellar upstairs, to which I duly obliged and he led me to the second floor of Duke’s where the wine cellar is located alongside a private dining room.

I walked along the wine selection, all 394 varieties of them, and reading some of the labels it was clear why Duke’s Wine & Grill had been awarded 3 Wine Glasses at the Wine List of the Year Awards. Chateau Le Pin from Pomerol, Pinot Noir from Domaine de la Romanee-Conti from Bourgogne, and Chateau Ausone from Saint Emilion were particular gems in what was a treasure trove from the world’s finest wineries. After exploring the wine list, I settled on a bottle of one of the house whites. The Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc from Marlborough came highly recommended by the manager.

If you prefer a fine single malt or a blended Scotch, then you can explore the extensive spirits list. Highlights include Hibiki 17 Years, Macallan 25 Years, and Royal Salute 38 Years. Duke’s Wine & Grill also boasted an impressive choice of imported cigars. The limited run of Cohiba Talisman 2017 Edition, in particular, caught the eye.

I headed back downstairs to my table and started to peruse the food menu. As I flicked through the pages, it quickly became apparent that Duke’s Wine & Grill boast one of the most delectable selections of dishes around; from the Anceline Oysters from France, the Beluga Caviar, the Canadian Lobster, to the Australian Wagyu Tomahawk Steak. Duke’s Wine & Grill only serve the finest of the fine.

As I ordered some dishes, the entertainer for that evening took to the stage and sat behind her piano ready to play. She introduced herself as NaTasha Rogers and when she started her set with a silky smooth rendition of This Masquerade by George Benson I knew we were in for something special that evening.

NaTasha quickly captivated the entire restaurant as she moved on to the Jazz classic Autumn Leaves. By the time she had started to play Lovin’ You by Minnie Ripperton, she had already cultivated that special kind of ambiance, which you only feel in the best Jazz bars.

Soon after, our dishes began to arrive. First up was Duke’s Signature Salad, an intriguing mix of Oyster, Avocado, Bergamot Pear, Manchego Cheese, and Quinoa. The chef struck just the right balance between sweet and savory to deliver a healthy salad you will want to keep coming back to.

Next was a favorite of fine-dining restaurants in China, the Pan-fried Foie Gras. The foie gras is served with mango chutney, which really brought out something new in the dish, and a candy brioche, which was somewhat of a surprise selection but paired unexpectedly well with foie grasAfter the Foie Gras, the Silver Cod Fish Filet arrived, 180 grams of the freshest and most succulent cod available. The cod was expertly matched with a basil clam sauce and came with a side of the softest baby potatoes and pearl vegetables.The final dish was something from Duke’s Wine & Grill’s meat selection. As tempted as the Australian Wagyu Tomahawk looked, I opted for the Salt Marsh Coastal Lamb Loin. Imported from New Zealand, the lamb loin was cooked with parsley, garlic, and breadcrumb, and presented with a rosemary and thyme sauce. The vegetables and herbs really offered the perfect balance to the dish.After another glass of the house white and a couple more songs from NaTasha, it was time for dessert. The intriguingly named Tropical Explosion certainly lived up to its name. The tropical mango’s crispy exterior betrayed the rich mousse inside while the passion fruit ice cream sprinkled with coconut melted in the mouth.Later that evening, I had a chance to chat with the Western Executive Chef, Fabrice Bruto. When he talked about his dishes, there was one element that ran through them all. For him, it is not about where a dish originated from, but the connection between the elements. It is about creating combinations and contrasts resulting in new flavors and sensations.

Before he left, he recommended that next time I try the Venison Rossini Burger, which sounds like the king of gourmet burgers; Venison Patty with Foie Gras and Black Forest Ham topped with Iberico Cheese, Arugula, and Caramelized Red Onions, served in a Brioche Bun with a side of Homemade Truffle French Fries.

I left Duke’s Wine & Grill having thoroughly enjoyed my evening and being reminded what a restaurant is capable of being. While it may be debatable what exactly makes a restaurant classy, there is little doubt that Duke’s is one of, if not the, classiest spots in Shenzhen.Address: Level 3, The Langham, Shenzhen, 7888 Shennan Boulevard, Futian, Shenzhen 518040 (中国深圳市福田区深南大道7888, 深圳东海朗廷酒店, 3)

Opening Hours: 6:30 pm to 1:00 am (Sun – Thurs), 6:30pm to 2:00am (Fri – Sat)

Tel: 86 (755) 8828 9888 ext.8922

Hilton Shenzhen Shekou Nanhai hotel General Manager named Outstanding Area General Manager

Hilton Shenzhen Shekou Nanhai hotel General Manager named Outstanding Area General Manager 2017-18.

Twofold award for John Burger

John Burger, Shenzhen Area General Manager and General Manager of Hilton Shenzhen Shekou Nanhai, has been honored as “Outstanding Area General Manager 2017 & 2018 (Asia Pacific).”

This was one of a number of awards acknowledging great leadership and outstanding commercial results achieved during the past year, announced at the recent Hilton APAC & Commercial Conference held in Singapore recently.

A veteran of four decades of experience in leading international hotels, John’s current responsibilities cover nine Shenzhen hotels.

In 2012, he was appointed General Manager of Hilton Shenzhen Shekou Nanhai China, which he opened in 2013. He also successfully oversaw transformation of the adjacent former Nanhai Hotel into a unique boutique resort, opened in 2017.

John’s award was twofold: for outstanding commercial results that have established the company as a local market leader. And also for his substantial contribution to the development of talent for the Women in Leadership Programme, dedicated to developing female leaders to enrich the diversity of the company’s management team.

The figures speak for themselves – a 110% market share; and an impressive rise in total hotel revenue – 2016 versus 2017 23%; and 2017 vs 2018 year to date, 45%.

Leading the Women in Leadership program proved to be “exciting, educational and thought-provoking,” John says. ”It was exciting to work closely with female leaders and watch them progressing to the next stage. During this processes, I was able to learn more about them. It was a steep learning curve as I started to appreciate the special challenges faced by a female leader whereas a male counterpart would never face such issues. This encouraged me to reflect on my personal life and think about how I balance my work and life. I thought about how my wife and I reacted to each promotion. So it was a process of witnessing other peoples’ growth and helping my own growth at the same time.”

“It was an honor to have the opportunity to present John with this coveted award for Area General Manager Asia Pacific. John has guided his area to superior performance and represents the very best of Hilton Hospitality.” said David Kelly, SVP Operations GCM,


About Hilton


Hilton (NYSE: HLT) is a leading global hospitality company, with a portfolio of 14 world-class brands comprising nearly 5,000 properties with more than 812,000 rooms in 103 countries and territories. Hilton is dedicated to fulfilling its mission to be the world’s most hospitable company by delivering exceptional experiences – every hotel, every guest, every time. The company’s portfolio includes Hilton Hotels & Resorts, Waldorf Astoria Hotels & Resorts, Conrad Hotels & Resorts, Canopy by Hilton, Curio Collection by HiltonTM, DoubleTree by Hilton, Tapestry Collection by HiltonTM, Embassy Suites by Hilton, Hilton Garden Inn, Hampton by Hilton, Tru by Hilton, Homewood Suites by Hilton, Home2 Suites by Hilton and Hilton Grand Vacations. The company also manages an award-winning customer loyalty program, Hilton Honors. Hilton Honors members who book directly through preferred Hilton channels have access to instant benefits, including a flexible payment slider that allows members to choose exactly how many Points to combine with money, an exclusive member discount that can’t be found anywhere else and free standard Wi-Fi. Visit newsroom.hilton.com for more information and connect with Hilton on FacebookTwitterLinkedInInstagram and YouTube.

Place Name: Hilton Shenzhen Shekou Nanhai 深圳蛇口希尔顿南海酒店
Place Address: 1177 Wanghai Rd, Nanshan District, Shenzhen 深圳市南山区望海路1177号
Place Phone: 0755 2162 8888

The Story of Bionic Brew & Electric City Craft Beer Fest

Shenzhen’s original craft beer festival, Electric City, is coming up on Friday 9th to Sunday 11th November. Shenzhen Party sat down to speak with Joe Finkenbinder, founder of Electric City and Bionic Brew, to learn more about this year’s festival, the story of his brewery, and his love of craft beer.

Shenzhen Party (SZP): Bionic Brew has become one of the most iconic craft beer brands in Shenzhen and across China. How did it all come about?

Joe Finkenbinder (JF): I started home brewing in 2008 when I was in Pennsylvania. I went to Beijing in 2010 where there was a brewery called Great Leap Brewing that had just started up, and I started to work there part-time. I really liked the brewing scene, and in 2014 I decided I wanted to do my own place in Shenzhen.

I’d never been to Shenzhen before. I didn’t know the area, I didn’t have any partners. But I liked the weather. I liked the access to Hong Kong.

I arrived in April and started brewing right away. Rented some equipment from another local brewer and I would brew there on weekends. Rented a little bar in Baishizhou. It was basically a tiny storage room. There were no chairs, no bathroom. It was just somewhere I could sell my beer.

After a month, we were doing pretty well, so I got the place next door. We started to brew inside there and we had a bar. And then that was closed by November. We had won a That’s PRD Award and by the time the award ceremony was held a week later we had already been closed down. They never told us why.

I reached out to a friend of mine, Thompson, who was the owner of NYPD. He made really good pizza, and pizza and beer kind of go together. So, we co-located in another shop in Baishizhou.

That worked for a few months before it was shut down. Apparently, it wasn’t zoned for what it was meant to be. So, we spent all that money and it was closed within a few months. It was a week after our first beer festival. We were top of the world and then you have your knees kicked out from under you.

Just when I was thinking that Baishizhou was not the right place, Thompson got in touch. He had found a 100 sqm location that was legit. The police had shown it to him and he had the paperwork.

So we opened the third Bionic in Baishizhou in August 2015. And that’s where we’ve been ever since.

SZP: Bionic Brew organize Shenzhen’s original craft beer festival, Electric City, which is now in its fourth year. How did that all start and how has it grown over the years?

JF: I’d seen it done in Beijing and Shanghai. I thought it would be a good way to bring people together and show there is craft beer down here.

We had six breweries from Guangzhou, Beijing, Hong Kong, and some local guys. The same weekend there was a big Battle of the Bands and the week before they lost their venue. So we did it together. I think everyone sold out of beer. I know we did. It was only one day, but it was a good time.

We have a waiting list for breweries, but we always invite back the people who came before. We have a lot of breweries, we could have 30, but I just said let’s do 19, plus the home brewers. Last year we did 17 plus the home brewers. The year before was 14.

We need to grow slowly to ensure we have good quality breweries because you want to have someone who already has a little bit of a foothold in the market already. And also, are they legal companies? You know, I don’t want people to get sick.

I would say for those that came, 80 or 90% were foreigners. By the fourth year, it’s – same as our bar – about 50/50. Some craft beer bars are all Chinese and there are some that are all foreign. But ours is very mixed.

SZP: Every year, the top brewers from all over China descend on Shenzhen for Electric City. What breweries have you got for us this year?

JF: One of the breweries we have is a Taiwanese brewery that has a Shenzhen location. They’re called Zhang Men. We’ve got Moonzen, from Hong Kong and we’ve got Master Gao, who comes every year. He’s one of, if not the, biggest brewery in China. We just did a nice Pilsner together. Then we’ve got guys from Wuhan, Beijing, Chengdu, Dongguan, and Guangzhou.

SZP: You must get a wide range of beers at Electric City. What have been the standout beers at the festival over the years?

JF: I’ve got some new recipes in development. An Imperial Stout and a Mango Saison. The idea is to have them there, but I don’t know yet. We’re going to have our two flagship beers and a new hoppy, amber beer called Brass Neck.

I know the guys from Moonzen do some weird stuff that people like. Craft Head is known for their cider. Last year, Devils from Wuhan made a Sweet & Sour Noodle beer. 18 Brewpub made a Blonde Coffee Saison, which they won an award for in Japan.

That’s the thing, you make two that you can just pound all day, and you make two that are the beer nerds, which are high alcohol and are unique.

SZP: After a few of those beers, I’m sure our readers will have worked up a bit of an appetite. What food vendors will be at Electric City this year?

JF: We’ve got a pretty good range. We’ve got tacos from Teqo, the new spot. We’ve got Artisans pizza, who came last year. HH Gourment, who does real cheeses, sandwiches, bagels, and pizza bagels and stuff. We’ve also got this guy, Andy, who flies down every year from Beijing. He makes his own sausages and they’re delicious.

We make Chinese food too. Most people sell Western food, but we do Chinese food. Just a bit different. We start at RMB20 for a Rou Jia Mo.

SZP: Craft beer festivals have become increasingly popular in recent years, and it’s threatening to over-saturate the market. How does Electric City distinguish itself from other craft beer festivals?

JF: What we do that makes us unique these days is that we only have brewers that brew in China. They have to be a Chinese business and they have to use Chinese water.

That’s pretty unique because it allows for a fairly even playing field. You see most of us started from pretty much nothing, and most of us are still pretty much very tiny businesses. There’s no Vedetts or Budweisers that can drop thirty grand and kit out their tent.

Another thing is, you don’t pay for beer with tickets at our festival. You pay each brewer individually. That way, that brewery keeps all the money. Not like these guys who do tickets and take 20% off the top and pocket it. As a brewer, we don’t want that to happen. We treat the festival as we would if we were one of the guests.

Also, every beer fest in China, apart from us and one other, use disposable cups. You get one, you drink one, you throw it away, you get another. So we give a plastic cup, but it’s a thick, reusable cup, and you have to take back that same cup every time. Between the first two years and when we introduced the cup, we cut down on our trash to 1/15th of what it was.

This year, another big difference for us is we are doing three days. One of the reasons for that is that on Sunday we will give out tickets to people in F&B. Number one, if there is any leftover beer then the vendors can sell the kegs to local bars and restaurants. Two, it helps the brewers build new relationships.

Where, When, and How Much?

Where:

Halo Plaza, No. 8 Liyuan Road, Luohu District, Shenzhen (深圳市罗湖区梨园路8号HALO广场)

When:

Friday 9th November, 17:00 – 23:00

Saturday 10th November, 12:00 – 23:00

Sunday 11th November, 12:00 – 19:00

How Much:

1 Day Ticket (includes entry, 3 beer taster coupons, 1 commemorative beer mug, 1 beer koozie) – Pre-sale RMB80, At door RMB100

Weekend Pass (includes entry, 6 beer taster coupons, 1 commemorative beer mug, 1 beer koozie) – Pre-sale RMB120, At door RMB150

Buy Tickets:

https://www.247tickets.com/t/electric-city-4th-shenzhen-craft-beer-festival

The Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge To Open Next Tuesday

Video from:South China Morning Post 

It’s set to become the world’s longest sea crossing, completely revolutionize the way people travel between Macau and Hong Kong, and be a giant step forward in the government’s Greater Bay area project, but the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge (HKZMB) has been a long time coming. Despite some delays and controversy, the bridge is set to open next Tuesday. Shenzhen Party went to work to discover the details about the seemingly imminent unveiling.

What is the bridge?

The Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge, or HKZMB for short, is a sea crossing that links the Mainland China via Zhuhai with Macau and Hong Kong. The bridge stretches a whopping 55 kilometers (34 miles), making it the longest sea crossing in the world.

The HKZMB has been plagued by its fair share of issues over the years. It was originally meant to be opened by 2016, but a series of controversies involving accidents on the bridge, overspending of budgets, and investigations into corruption has caused it to be delayed until now. But when looking past the setbacks, it’s exciting to see the new opportunities the bridge will bring to the region.

Previously, travelers had to take the ferry to travel directly between Hong Kong and Zhuhai or Macau, or travel indirectly by vehicle north through Shenzhen, across the Pearl River Delta, and south again. Now, with the opening of the HKZMB, travelers can travel directly by car, taxi, or bus. The impact of this cannot be overstated.

Travel times are about to be reduced massively. While before it would take 3 to 4 hours to travel by car from Macau or Zhuhai to Hong Kong, with the HKZMB it will only take 30 minutes.

Also, the HKZMB is open 24 hours. Unlike a number of the other borders between Hong Kong and Mainland China, travelers are free to cross whenever they need.

Interestingly, and perhaps most importantly, the bridge is cheaper than taking a ferry. Speaking of which…

How much does it cost?

The Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge Authority recently released information on the toll prices for the sea crossing. More information is inspected once the bridge is officially opened and it should be noted that the information is still subject to change.

Vehicle type Cost (per vehicle)
Shuttle Bus RMB300
Cross-Border Coach RMB200
Car/Taxi RMB150
Cargo Truck RMB115
Ordinary Truck RMB60

When is it opening?

Now, that has been the million (Hong Kong) dollar question for the past couple of years.

The bridge was meant to open back in 2016, but there have been several setbacks that have seen the project delayed until now. We’ve heard rough dates for the opening before, only to be disappointed later.

But this time seems to be different, with the government confirming a set opening date of Tuesday October 23rd. Check back regularly with Shenzhen Party for more news when the bridge opens and also tips on how to use the bridge.

All Photos from: http://www.hzmb.org; http://www.hzmb.hk/ 

[Winner Announcement] Clockenflap: Hong Kong’s Music & Arts Festival 2018

ShenzhenParty.com is very proud to hold a contest for Clockenflap: Hong Kong’s Music & Arts Festival 2018. We are pleased to announce that the winner of the contest is as below. Congratulations!!

Clockenflap: Hong Kong’s Music & Arts Festival 2018 Winners: 

Zena Wong  

Ryan Esser   

James david   

Congratulations to the winners above!! :) Also thanks to everyone who attended the contest. We look forward to seeing you all at our next contest in the future. Be prepared, you just might be the next winner!!

My Shenzhen Mission: Bringing ‘Tech’ to ‘non-Technicals’

Hi, I am Markey Tan and this is my story of how I came to start a coding bootcamp in Shenzhen.

It started just like how it starts for so many others out there. I went to university to study the subjects of my choosing; political science and international relations, all the while increasingly getting conscious of the problems around me and constantly coming up with the ideas to solve them.

By the time I graduated, I was all stoked and couldn’t wait to entrepreneur the crap out of my ideas. Only to realize that ideas, no matter how good and enthusiasm can only take you so far and what I needed was business skills. So, I did what every fresh out of the university, aspiring entrepreneur does: I went to business school.

I chose to do my masters in business management at the Peking University in Shenzhen. I couldn’t have chosen a better city to study in.

Shenzhen was a dream come true for my entrepreneurial mind that by now was brimming with ideas. Plus, it comes to the era that all devices can be connected with the Internet. Then Shenzhen must be the place!

With its ever-growing international community, a strong spirit of entrepreneurship and all sort of resources available at my fingertips, I was sure to be able to launch my project in no time but even though I had a clear business plan and knew all that I needed to know or so I thought, I still found myself on the outside of things looking in.

My year 2017 would be spent working as a co-founder of China Channel. In the process, I really had a blast setting up large-scale events related to China Digital Marketing. I was using Tencent WeChat to its full extent every day for growth, management, and communications.

It was there, among some of the most brilliant entrepreneurial and business minds that I realized what I had been missing in my arsenal: technical skills.

Too often, I had an idea for a product or a service. I had done my research and it was most definitely needed. I had a business model, I had a marketing plan, I had projections, and everything else, except a way to talk to my tech team. They spoke a language, I didn’t understand and I couldn’t clearly relay what I was looking for. Even though I had complete confidence in their capabilities, I felt alienated throughout the design process. I was once again on the outside of things. How could I call it my product when I didn’t know anything about its inner workings?

CHina CHat is the largest international Chinese Digital Marketing conference in the World

It was now clear to me why so many genius ideas remain just that, Ideas. The lack of technical know-how in the business minds keeps them from realizing their dream projects.

I decided to tackle this technical difficulty head-on by going back to school to learn to code, as if the universe was waiting for me to make this decision; I meet Thibault of Le Wagon China.

He told me what he does, I told him what all I wanted to do, long story short, instead of spending what could possibly have been years, I am on way to a 9-weeks coding bootcamp.

Le Wagon batch #151 in Chengdu, West China

Why did I or should anyone else join the Le Wagon coding bootcamp?

First of all, isn’t it better to test the waters by joining a 9-weeks program before plunging headfirst into what can be at the least a year-long course, only to realize it is not something for you and dropping out mid-semester?

Second and I know this through experience, Le Wagon coding bootcamps are not designed to beat the coding into you but to ease you into the world of computer languages and programming so that after the camp, you can choose whether you want to continue learning or if you’ve learned all that you needed.

Third, and this was the reason that I joined the bootcamp, wouldn’t it be nice if you can be more involved in the actual realization of your brain-child and be able to understand what your technical team is talking about at your next staff meeting? It’s not for no reason that Bill Gates dropped out of pre-law and chose computer science. Also to myself, I always came up with the idea. Then this is perfect for me to just make it come true with Le Wagon tools that I’ve learned within 9 weeks.

And last but not the least, you will be learning in a friendly, non-classroom environment from highly skilled, seasoned, coders who won’t only give you theoretical knowledge but teach you how to implement it.

Back to my story. We fast forward to 9 weeks later. I am done with the Le Wagon bootcamp and was I glad that I went. Not only did I learn a programming language, albeit basic (hey, it was a big deal for someone with a non-technical background like me), my fear of all things programming related is gone! Now, I can continue learning on my own with the help of the books that didn’t even dare look at the cover of.

And, the cherry on top of this awesome sundae is that now I am more involved in my projects and can understand when my developers tell me that there is a ‘technical problem’ and not just stare him blankly in the face as they go on explaining it.

Who should attend Le Wagon coding bootcamp?

Everyone! In this day and age when programming is fast becoming the most widely spoken language of the world, it doesn’t matter whether you are a student, entrepreneur, salesman, marketing specialist, financial consultant or English teacher… You got to know the what, how and why of those dozens of applications and smart gadgets you are using. Especially if you are living in China.

Now that you are all excited to give it a try, where can you attend a Le Wagon bootcamp?

Le Wagon is currently present in 29 cities across the globe and as I couldn’t keep the benefit of this mind-blowing program to myself, I have decided to bring Le Wagon to Shenzhen!

Why Shenzhen?

If not here then where? Shenzhen boasts and for no small reasons, its new-found status of being the tech and gadget capital of China. It is home to some of the biggest tech giants like Tencent, Huawei, DJI, BYD and ZTE of our time.

In just 40 years, what was a fisherman’s village has gone from being the hardware manufacturing city to now quickly becoming the tech capital of the country.

With its strategically superior location in Greater Bay Area, manufacturing facilities, diverse international culture, Shenzhen is where the startup dreams come true.

Despite attracting a vast entrepreneurial crowd, there is one major problem.

The talent pool in Shenzhen is divided into two groups, one with genius ideas and the other with technical skills to turn it into reality.

Because of the communication gap, one can’t explain to the other what it is that they want in their product or if it is at all possible.

So even when the two are able to come together, the outcome is most of the times, less than satisfactory or not all what they initially hoped and planned for. As a result, most startups don’t even get to see the light of day and die out during the execution and, the ones that do get launched, their life is short lived.

With Le Wagon coding bootcamp, I wish to bridge that gap in knowledge and communication in tech in Shenzhen.

So, if you are someone who has a business idea but don’t know how to go about executing it, a young professional who wants to get a taste of programming or a senior executive in a tech company. Le Wagon Shenzhen is now here for you.

The Mission in Shenzhen

We are really excited about working with the young business minds, seasoned professionals and entrepreneurs of Shenzhen to bridge the gap between techs and non-techs. Our passionate programming teachers are eager to share their knowledge with anyone and everyone willing to make a step to help themselves.

A community empowered with knowledge will make for a better, stronger Shenzhen.

If you are in Shenzhen and would like to know more about our mission, contact me!

👉 markey@lewagon.org

For more: https://medium.com/le-wagon/shenzhen-mission-bringing-tech-to-non-technicals-d5aceb497925

The Langham, Shenzhen Awarded “Best Business Hotel” in Condé Nast Traveler China Gold List 2018

Best Business Hotel

Since opening its doors in 2012, The Langham, Shenzhen, has been combining modern facilities with classic sophistication, as well as the most thoughtful and meticulous services, to provide a peaceful and comfortable place for leisure and business travelers.

In August 2018, The Langham, Shenzhen, was named “Best Business Hotel” in Condé Nast Traveler China Gold List 2018 by renowned travel magazine Condé Nast Traveler.

Introduced in the US for the first time in 1995, the Gold List by global luxury travel and lifestyle magazine Condé Nast Traveler covers over 50 countries and regions across five continents and is the most authoritative list for the global tourism industry. Presenting an objective and professional selection of the top hotels, the Gold List is widely regarded by travelers around the world as one of the most trusted “Golden Standard”.

In the spirit of objectivity, authority and professionalism, Condé Nast Traveler published the first “Golden Guide” for travelers to China in 2004. In 2017, the selection received a full upgrade to include hotel, airlines, airports, cruises and travel agencies, providing a list that is catered to the Chinese tourism market and represents the preferences of travelers to China from a global perspective.

Also known as the “Oscars” of the global travel industry, the Gold List complies with the highest industry standards. Independent surveys and tasting were conducted to assess hotels based on the strictest criteria to ensure that the list is a true reflection of the world and the times to keep travelers at the forefront of fashion and lifestyle.

“We are very honored,” Mr. Jeffrey van Vorsselen, General Manager of The Langham, Shenzhen, said. “This is The Langham, Shenzhen’s second inclusion in the Gold List since 2014. The accolade of ‘Best Business Hotel’ is a result of the love and support that business travelers have given to the hotel. We treasure this recognition very much. In the future, we will continue to provide the best services, as usual.”

Located conveniently in the Futian commercial district, The Langham, Shenzhen inherits over 150-year old classic luxury of the Langham brand. The hotel has 352 guest rooms and suites, 8 banquet halls, multipurpose conference rooms catereing to different business needs, and 7 iconic restaurants that offer a wide range of dining options. In addition, the Langham Hospitality Group’s very own Chuan Spa uses the concept of five elements in traditional Chinese medicine to create a series of natural treatments that allow guests to relax in a tranquil space away from the hustle and bustle of the city.

The Langham, Shenzhen

About Langham Hospitality Group


As the wholly-owned subsidiary of Great Eagle Holdings, Langham Hospitality Group encompasses a family of distinctive hotels under the Langham Hotels and Resorts and Cordis Hotels brands with more than 50 projects currently either confirmed or in a developed stage of negotiation from Asia, Europe and North America to the Middle East. The Group takes its name from the legendary Langham in London which was widely recognized as Europe’s first Grand Hotel. For 150 years, this flagship hotel has represented sophisticated and gracious hospitality, a philosophy that reflects elegance in design, innovation in hospitality, genuine service and captivation of the senses across all properties. For more information, please access the website at www.langhamhospitalitygroup.com.

Place Address:  The Langham, 7888 Shennan Boulevard, Futian District, Shenzhen 深圳市福田区深南大道7888号
Place Phone:  0755 – 8828 9888

Take a walk in someone else’s shoes with Shenzhen Stories

Shenzhen Stories is a community of people from all over the world who get together once a month to share their stories. These stories come from all walks of life and are told in a coffee shop snuggled in the Shekou neighborhood of Shenzhen.

Shenzhen Stories was founded by two buddies, Trey Hobbs and Siobhan Lumsden, directly in response to a feeling of being far from home and away from a community.

Shenzhen is a stirred pot of countless cultures, beliefs, backgrounds, and experiences. The nature of this city is one of diversity and growth and those things make for colorful lives lived. However, all the business, all the growth, and all the change lend itself to a certain amount of transience. Shenzhen Stories seeks to create a space for a permanent sense of community in a fast moving world.

The mission statement of Shenzhen Stories is simple: to foster an international community through the art of storytelling. This has taken shape in the form of traditional oral storytelling, dance, music, visual art, and everything in between. Month after month, the stage is filled with humor, grief, the curious, and the downright bizarre.

No matter what though, the stories told are absolutely true. In ten minutes, storytellers share micro-moments of their life to a room full of friends and strangers alike with the goal that, in the end, there are a few more friends than strangers. It is amazing to see people from all walks of life hear a story from someone so different from them and be able to see themselves in that story. It is these little bits of empathy that truly build bridges. Through fostering this community, Shenzhen Stories hopes to cultivate that ideology as people travel throughout the world.

Throughout the nearly two years of hosting stories, one thing stands out above all things. Honesty. Shenzhen Stories has been honored to partner with other great organizations throughout Shenzhen for special events and workshops. This has allowed them to reach both the local and international communities and has given them access to a plethora of interesting stories. In these workshops, tools are presented to increase skill, structure, and confidence when sharing, but when asked in these workshops what makes for a great story, the answer is always the same: honesty. Month after month, it is clearer and clearer that audiences are drawn to truth.

It is refreshing and quite often life is indeed stranger than fiction. The Shenzhen Stories stage has heard stories of marriages born from devastating natural disasters, close calls with cults, clandestine cats, and breast implants being blown away in the wind. It has heard life viewed through our pets, through disastrous earthquakes, loss of loved ones, and the discovery of family previously hidden. Like no kidding! There have been stories told over and over again about reuniting with lost family members.

It’s these stories that walk past us every day on the street and sit next to us on the bus. The world is a crazy place and it’s full of people who have lived exciting and wonderful lives. Shenzhen Stories believes that if we can understand where a person has come from, we can understand that person.

Seeing the world through a person’s eyes doesn’t just validate their experience though. It validates those hearing it as well. The audience has a chance to see themselves in these stories. To see a world both different and also familiar in these stories is where, as a society, we thrive. We thrive when we express ourselves. We thrive when we connect to others and join in a community.

For our ancestors, it used to mean survival and I’m not sure that has changed so much for us in 2018. But also, it’s just plain fun! It is really a thrill to walk in another’s shoes and for a short time look down and see that even though we have walked in much different landscapes, our shoes don’t look so different. It’s fascinating to hear an amazing true tale of adventure, pain, joy, or the bizarre and be able to say “me too”.

So why tell our stories in a coffee shop surrounded by friends and strangers? Why spill your guts for a podcast to be listened to by people around the world? The answer may be as simple as for fun and as huge as for survival. Whatever the answer is for you, Shenzhen Stories aims to create a safe platform for where every person and every story has worth and value and where we can all have a great time doing it.

How to get in touch

Shenzhen Stories meets every month in Shekou. For more information, contact them at shenzhenstories@gmail.com or follow them on social media @shenzhenstories.

To listen to your fellow humans, find the podcast on iTunes and SoundCloud by searching ‘shenzhenstories’.

Autumn Wedding Show @The St. Regis Shenzhen

The St. Regis Shenzhen

Autumn wedding show and exquisite wedding package

The St. Regis Shenzhen presented the Autumn wedding show on August 26th. The wedding show is including themed video and presentation of bespoke St. Regis wedding butler service. There was also an elaborate display of wedding menu and desserts. Prizes with buffet coupon, complimentary room night and so on had been blasted out during the show.

For the wedding show weekend, an exclusive package has been offered with limited bookings available.

The package includes:

-Reserve and enjoy reduction of 10% service charge

-Reserve and enjoy RMB 988 package, including a bottle of wine, soft drink for 3 hours and table flowers

-Reserve and enjoy a discount of RMB 826 per table

-Reserve and enjoy additional 6,000 SPG Pro points when consume RMB 200,000, enjoy additional 12,000 SPG Pro points when consume RMB 300,000

Minimum 20 tables (10 pax/table), minimum charges will be applied for weekend and hot wedding dates.

For more information, our wedding telephone line at +86 755 2223 9338.


About St. Regis Hotels & Resorts


Combining classic sophistication with a modern sensibility, St. Regis is committed to delivering exceptional experiences at nearly 40 luxury hotels and resorts in the best addresses around the world. Since the opening of the first St. Regis hotel in New York City over a century ago by John Jacob Astor IV, the brand has remained committed to an uncompromising level of bespoke and anticipatory service for all of its guests, delivered flawlessly by signature St. Regis Butler Service. The ultra-luxury brand is set to expand its legacy to 50 hotels by 2018. For more information and new openings, visit stregis.com or follow TwitterInstagram and Facebook.

Place Address:  No. 5016 Shennan Road East, Luohu District Shenzhen 深圳市罗湖区深南东路 5016 号 深圳
Place Phone:  +86 (755) 830 88888

 

Glory Kickboxers Weigh-In At Mission Hills

Some of the world’s top kickboxers were at Mission Hills Centreville in Shenzhen for the official weigh-in ahead of the GLORY 57 Shenzhen event on Saturday, August 25.

Mission Hills Group has partnered with GLORY, the world’s premier stand-up combat league, to bring kickboxing to Shenzhen.  Mission Hills Shenzhen is the tournament’s Official Hotel.

GLORY 57 Shenzhen – part of a five-city ‘Summer of GLORY 2018’ campaign – takes place at the Shenzhen Bay Sports Center this Saturday, August 25.

Representatives from Mission Hills Group and GLORY were on hand for today’s weigh-in, including Tenniel Chu, Vice Chairman of Mission Hills Group, Marshall Zelaznik, CEO of GLORY and Scott Rudmann, Vice Chairman and Co-founder of GLORY.

For more information about Summer of GLORY 2018, the five-city campaign featuring can’t-miss events in New York, Denver, Shenzhen (China), Chicago and Amsterdam, visit glorykickboxing.com/summerofglory2018.

For more information about GLORY, visit glorykickboxing.com.

Photo 1-Mission Hills Group Vice-Chairman Tenniel Chu (centre) at the GLORY57 weigh-in ceremony with kickboxers Sitthichai Sitsongpeenong (left) of Thailand and Belgium’s Marat Grigorian at Mission Hills Centreville in Shenzhen

Photo 2-Some of the world’s top kickboxers were at Mission Hills Centreville in Shenzhen for the official weigh-in ahead of the GLORY 57 Shenzhen event on Saturday, August 25.


About Mission Hills Group


Mission Hills Group, owner and operator of Mission Hills resorts in the heart of the Pearl River Delta and on the tropical island of Hainan, is synonymous with leisure, wellness, entertainment and luxury.

Founded in 1992, Mission Hills is recognized as one of the world’s leading golf brands and a pioneer in China’s hospitality, sports and leisure industry. The world-class integrated leisure and wellness resort destinations have hosted more than 100 international tournaments, dating back to the World Cup of Golf in 1995, the first international golf tournament in China. Mission Hills has also been accredited by the Guinness World Records as the “World’s Largest Golf Club” and the “World’s Largest Mineral Springs and Spa Resort”.

Mission Hills’ properties sprawl over 40 square kilometres. They include 22 championship courses designed by renowned players and architects from five continents, five-star resorts, award-winning spas and volcanic mineral springs, international convention centres, state-of-the-art golf academies, a 20-pitch football training base, Asia’s largest basketball school and Asia’s biggest tennis facility. Mission Hills is also the official training headquarters for China’s Tennis, Football and Golf Associations.

The Group’s ‘golf and more’ leisure philosophy has seen its tourism-related business expand into a leisure hub for multi-generational families. Mission Hills Centreville in Shenzhen and Haikou provides integrated shopping, recreational, business, education, entertainment, leisure and cultural experiences, including Bromsgrove School Mission Hills in Shenzhen in collaboration with the historic British boarding school. Mission Hills has also extended its foray into the hospitality industry by partnering with world-renowned hotel brands such as Hard Rock, Renaissance and Ritz-Carlton. These collaborations have seen the opening of Ritz-Carlton’s first golf resort hotel in China and China’s first Hard Rock Hotel in Shenzhen.

Other significant projects include Movie Town in Haikou in partnership with China’s largest film production company, Huayi Brothers Media Corporation and award-winning director, Feng Xiaogang and China’s first Wet’n’Wild water park in collaboration with Australia’s leading entertainment group and largest theme park operator, Village Roadshow Limited.

Mission Hills has also announced ground-breaking partnerships with FC Barcelona and the NBA to bring the world’s most famous football club and the world’s largest professional basketball league to its Haikou resort, making Hainan island a leading hub for football and basketball development in China.

For more information and latest updates, visit www.missionhillschina.com or follow Mission Hills China on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter and YouTube.

Celebrating An Expat Institution For Women In Shenzhen

For many expats, what makes or breaks a move to a new country is the community they meet there. One cannot underestimate the importance of having a friend to go to the bar for a drink or to grab a coffee during the day. It can make a world of difference if you know some people you can ask for help or advice, be it finding where to buy the food they like from back home or to take them to the hospital after an accident.

 

If someone is fortunate enough to find this sense of community when they move to a strange new place, then they are more likely to stay longer and start to feel like they have a found a home away from home. It’s that same sense of community that the Shenzhen Women’s International Club (SWIC) has been providing to the ladies of our city for over 30 years.

 

We sat down with President Yvette Taylor and Programs Chair Christyne Holmes for a coffee and a chat to find out more about what SWIC is about and what it offers to the expat women in the local community.

 

“It started in 1986. It was just a few ladies who met in somebody’s lounge in Jingshan. Two years ago we did quite a few big events to celebrate the 30 years. There are no original members left, but we do have some photos,” explained Yvette.

Christyne had heard about what it was like back when SWIC started. “At that time, in the Shekou area, there were a lot of oil and gas companies, so my guess would be that it came out of that. There were a lot of expat ladies, or expat families, that were living here, and they don’t really know how to communicate locally. They didn’t speak Chinese. They had just moved here. That time, wasn’t like it is now.”

 

SWIC has come on leaps and bounds since it was first formed, but it fundamentally represents the same values. Their mission statement can be found in their leaflets, but Christyne sums it up well during our chat.

 

“I think our goal with SWIC is to offer the gals support. These women are the anchors for their husbands and kids and they feel like they are running around, taking care of and solving all the problems. Grocery shopping alone can be a challenge in a new country where you don’t speak the language. Any additional special needs can make acclimation and adjustment even more difficult. I like to think of it as a soft place to land. You can come here and ask whatever questions. You can vent. You can get rejuvenated. Then we put you back out there.”

 

“We recently had an event and some of the new ladies were really struggling. If you’ve never been to Asia before, it is a culture shock. So we are there for them if they want someone to chat to,” added Yvette.

The group has grown tremendously over the years, which is reflected in the original name of Shekou Women’s International Club being changed to the Shenzhen Women’s International Club it is today. The amount and variety of activities now held offer members something interesting to do every day during the week.

 

“Every Tuesday morning 9:30 to 11:30 we have a coffee morning. It’s usually at the Hilton, except for the third Tuesday of every month where we go to the Marco Polo in Futian. At our Hilton coffee we generally have over 50 ladies, on some occasions more than 70. The Marco Polo coffee is popular with a lot of our members that live in Futian and have kids, but we also get a lot from Shekou. Generally, there are 50 ladies there.

 

There’s also a book club, which meets once a month on a Tuesday evening. Most of the books are, some fiction, some non-fiction, but right now we are reading one about a Chinese wife and American husband bringing up their son in Shanghai,” explained Yvette.

cof

Mothers with young children form a significant percentage of the members in SWIC and they are well taken care of.

 

“So we have a large Mom’s and Tot’s group. That is a lot of support for those with preschool kids. Every week they make play dates. It’s every Wednesday or Thursday and it’s someone different every week. It alternates between different apartments. They had a big Easter party recently and you wouldn’t believe how many people were there. It was crazy,” recalled Christyne.

 

Yet that represents just a small fraction of the work SWIC puts in to arrange activities for their members. Christyne gave a breakdown of what happens in a typical week.

 

“Monday they have the hiking group. Tuesday we have the coffee. Wednesday they play tennis. Thursdays they usually do another hike. Monday and Wednesday they do archery. Friday we do mahjong. And then we sprinkle in other activities along the way. A couple of weeks ago we made dumplings in my house. We had 15 or 16 gals who came to my house for that. At the weekend we are going to the Opium War Museum.”

 

The women of SWIC also enjoy their parties and members can be sure to have a few large events to be arranged each year.

“We had our farewell lunch on the 22nd of May. It was a chance to say farewell for the summer and to those who were leaving Shenzhen. That was at the Westin. We had the ballroom there for a late morning lunch with a wonderful buffet and sparkling wine. 90 Ladies attended,” said Yvette.

 

“Then in September, we will have our welcome breakfast. A way for everyone to get back into the groove,” added Christyne.

 

Even putting the weekly activities and the great parties aside for one moment, SWIC is worth joining for the great discounts members can enjoy at more than 50 restaurants, bars, shops, spas, and other businesses you are sure to come into contact with during your time in Shenzhen.

 

“This is worth the cost of the membership alone. Because if you go to McCawley’s and get 5% off then it adds up over time. It adds up pretty quickly,” explained Christyne.

 

Charity work forms an important part of the work that SWIC does, so those who want to give back to the local community can find a platform to do so at the club. Yvette went into detail about the assistance they provide.

“We support three local charities; Captivating, Promised Land, and Sunshine Academy. We budget at the start of each year and we set out an amount for each charity. That can either be given to them at the end of the year or if they want to use it throughout the year. What we’ve also done this year are three coffees where – they usually cost 50RMB – the members have it free, but then we have a charity bucket. So we’ve raised 3 or 4,000RMB each charity coffee just by doing that.”

 

SWIC boasts a large membership, but it’s not one that is dominated by any one clique. As is stated as part of their mission statement, ‘there is no typical SWIC member. We are women of all ages, with or without children, working or not working for money, seasoned or first-time expats’.

 

“We have over 250 members at the moment. There can be up to thirty different nationalities on a bus during a trip,” explained Yvette.

 

When asked about the makeup of those 250 members, Christyne is keen to express the diversity. “I would say American is probably the largest nationality and then maybe French. Our mahjong group just cracks me up. We have women from Belgium, France, Korea, Japan, America, New Zealand, and Australia.”

“It’s amazing that everyone gets on so well. I don’t know anyone that is cross with one another. In 250 people, I don’t know if there is any bad blood or poor relations. Which is pretty amazing when everybody is from different walks of life,” she added.

 

Perhaps the best possible note to finish on is to simply leave you with a quote from the SWIC mission statement, which sums up all the good work the women at the club are doing.

 

‘The purpose of Shenzhen Women’s International Club is to promote social and cultural exchange between the women of the expatriate community in Shekou and throughout Shenzhen. This is done through meetings and activities in the spirit of mutual understanding and friendship.

SWIC provides a focus for social and cultural activities for members and is of particular value to newcomers by serving as a means to meet other expats, find resources, and share tips and information about living in this city.

 

We are a club run solely by volunteers. To give back to our host country, we continually support local charities through donations, promotion, and active participation.’

 

To become a member of SWIC, applicants must hold a foreign passport or be a spouse of a foreign passport holder. Membership costs RMB350 per year, with the year beginning in August.

 

For more information or to inquire about joining SWIC, you can visit their official website or check out their Facebook page. Feel free to send an email to membership@swiconline.com.

sdr

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hike Your Heart Out in Hong Kong

Home to beautiful skylines, a multitude of tourist attractions and centuries’ old historical sites, Hong Kong already has much to offer the Shenzhen, Chinese and International Communities for fun times. There is a wonder and amazement to this territory’s nature, however, which can be explored and enjoyed by all those whose curiosities are inspired by the lush, green and mountainous expanses.  Shenzheners now have a group with which to enjoy hiking these mountain-forest outskirts of Hong Kong! Founded in 2017 by Vincent and Oswaldo, the Discovery group dedicates itself to immersing curious explorers into parts of Hong Kong previously unseen, and helps these visitors develop a love and wonder for nature, have fun, and share with others in community through hiking. While it is still young, Discovery Adventure Tours has proven itself to be very successful in these tasks. Its activities range from cliff-jumping, snorkeling, diving, surfing, hiking, and more! And, they have left several fun-lovers both satisfied and excited for future activities. Some of our fellow city-dwellers yearn for friendships after having just arrived from their home countries, and fresh air and exercise prove to be great aids in achieving friendship with others.

When asked what she thought of her experience with the Discovery Hiking Trips, Carla shared how she “really appreciated the opportunity to escape the city to do some exercise in some beautiful scenery, in the company of lovely and friendly people!”

Wang Zai is also happy to be in the group because he wanted to meet people in different industries from himself, as well as enjoy the sun and nature.

Some people, previously not so interested in hiking, have now become hooked by its allure and fallen in love with its beauty. Echo is one of those captured individuals; she previously thought hiking was just a boring outdoor activity. Now, she has been swayed! She goes every month to see these views of the city from the top, and her beautiful photos even convince her friends to join her on later excursions. She thinks the trips are “totally worth it,” she likes to stay after the hike to swim at the beach, and keeps being surprised by Discovery’s events every time. Several individuals interviewed express similar sentiments to Carla and Echo, in which they feel happy to have a social outlet combined with both new and existing loves of hiking outdoors.

Of course, there are these social and natural elements of the Discovery hikes. But, another very much appreciated factor in these trips is that….things are just taken care of. The logistics are planned out, meeting points are developed and people can follow plans laid out by the group’s creators. Vincent, one of these head-honchos who scopes out good-quality and safe routes, feels the trails the group goes to are particularly beautiful and gratifying for the hike-lover. He also makes sure to inform both oldies and newbies (author’s term) in advance of the different difficulty levels of these hikes to prevent either boredom or over-exertion, depending on the individual.

Ivan, who heard about the hiking tours through Oswaldo, “was interested in going to a Hong Kong Beach to swim and live in a tent, dance and eat BBQ!” Sounds like a good kind of life, eh? He goes on to say,” Hiking makes you see beautiful scenery, helps you keep fit. I enjoy the trips very much, [and] feel attached to the people with whom we usually go.” Friendships, fitness and fun: Ivan knows where it’s at.

 Carla went on to share how she “really like[s] that [she] just has to be at the meeting point at a specific time with walking shoes and everything else is already organized and taken care of.” Liliia shares Carla’s sentiments since she feels, “as a foreigner, to go to Shenzhen or Hong Kong countryside is very challenging.” For her, Discovery is a really good way to learn about new places and still not get lost in the process. Getting lost sometimes is fun, but Liliia, we feel your pain.

And now, happiness! Oswaldo, the marketing magician both behind and in front of the scenes, wanted to be able to bring foreign friends, Chinese friends and Hong Kong beauty together in a workable way. Both organizers create a streamlined experience for adventure-goers, and logistics are addressed and taken care of in advance.

All of these perspectives leave you excited and tantalized, yes?! Well! Discovery Tours has something exciting for you in store!! We can’t just tell you about it without offering a change to experience it, right? The group will be hosting yet another hiking trip this coming July 29th, where you can get your chance to meet new people, have fun, explore nature, and get in touch with Hong Kong’s natural beauty! Oswaldo, Vincent, and the group’s several members are excited to meet you and create some good times and good memories. To get in the loop about future events, Discovery Group has its very own WeChat group, and their contact details is provided below.  So! Join the group, have some fun in the sun, and LET’S. GO. HIKING!

Harmony Jones

Oswaldo wechat ID: osloor  Phone: 13380386829

Vincent wechat ID: ywh0665 Phone: 13510154421

Long-press the QR Code, tap “Extract QR Code” to Follow “Discovery” on Wechat for more information.

Take a step forward to hike:

Startup Mentor & Entrepreneur Daniella Santana

Written by Peter Fenton

Startup mentor and entrepreneur, Daniella Santana, first arrived in Shenzhen in 2005. The vibrant Brazilian has high energy, a generous spirit and real insight into the challenges foreigners face operating a business in China. Recently, Peter Fenton, from Evertop Legal Solutions, caught up with Dany between her keynote addresses, master of ceremonies duties, and running her own business.

Shenzhen Party (SP): What was your first impression of Shenzhen?

Daniella Santana (DS): When I first arrived in Shenzhen, there was not much going on in the city. The foreign community was very small and most of the people were in the export business. In those early days, I left and came back to China twice, but now I have lived in Shenzhen for a decade.

Shenzhen is a great place to start a career. Compared to some cities, there are still plenty of great opportunities for those who can offer certain skills and services. If you come to Shenzhen to start a local business, you have a great chance to succeed.

The rapid development of the city is what impresses me the most. When I first arrived, there was only Line 1 on the metro, which was half the length it is now. Today, the metro has 11 lines. The city now has a wide variety of restaurants, bars, five-star hotels, and lots of business and networking events.

SP: You have a wealth of experience in logistics and assisting companies with OEM. Based on what you are seeing, where do you see the trade opportunities in Shenzhen at the moment?

DS: Shenzhen has diversified and developed. The city has had a great number of startups, both in tech and in hardware, working on all kinds of projects. In terms of trade, the market with the most potential is to import products into China for the country’s growing upper and middle classes. The domestic consumer market is booming, especially for high-quality goods and healthcare products.

SP: You facilitated the first TEDx event in Shenzhen. What interested you the most about the TEDx experience?

DS: TEDx was one of the best experiences of my life. A few years ago, I decided I would like to give a talk at TEDx, but I could never have imagined that one day I would help to put together, what has so far been the best TEDx event in Shenzhen. Held at the Shangri-la Hotel, we had 150 people attending the event, with top speakers coming from all over the world including London. It was the first time that the foreign community could attend a TEDx event in Shenzhen.

What I loved most was, firstly, to organize my first ever live TEDx talk, and secondly, to provide the foreign community with a TEDx talk in English, which for many of them would also be the first time they attended such an event.

SP: What do you see as the opportunities and the challenges for women in business in China?

SONY DSC

DS: China is far ahead of many other countries and also gives more opportunities to people, no matter their age, race, or gender. As long as you can deliver a good job, you can have the world at your feet.

There have been few instances where I felt it was difficult to do business as a woman in China. Most of the experiences here have been overwhelmingly positive and have helped me to get to where I am in my career today. I don’t think I could have achieved what I did, if it wasn’t for China.

China inspires you to be an entrepreneur. There are so many opportunities to open your own business here, and this is very inspiring and empowering for women. In China, it’s very easy to meet and develop relationships. You may meet someone at a networking event today and next month you could be starting a business or working on an amazing project with this person.

For instance, we have the first international Female Book Club of Shenzhen since July last year. All the books are free and we read one book per month then meet at the end of the month to discuss what we have read.

All the books are meant to help the women with their development, both in their business and their personal life. This non-profit event has helped and inspired many women to start a business or to get back into business after many years of being a stay-at-home mother. For me, this is a great source of inspiration.

SP: You recently addressed the Cross-Border Summit in Shenzhen. What was it like and which topics did you address in your presentation?

DS: The Cross-Border is a great initiative from Mike Michelini, which helps entrepreneurs and business owners to fill in the gaps for those who have a cross-border business in Asia. It covers quality control, logistics, Amazon, import/export, among other important topics.

Additionally, I also recently participated in the first “women only” fireside chat alongside other amazing women who are doing incredible things in China. I was very flattered to be invited this year. We talked about the challenges women face in business, how we got to where we are, and we gave a few tips for female entrepreneurs on how to get started and how to pursue their dreams.

SP: You also assist with Startup Chile. What opportunities do you see Chile has in China?

 DS: At Startup Chile, I mentor female entrepreneurs on manufacturing in China and business development for the Asian market. Startup Chile is the number one accelerator in Latin America, and my idea is to help as many startups as I can to not only enter the Chinese market, but also create their prototypes and products here and export them to Chile.

Due to the free trade agreement between both countries, products coming from China are more competitive in Chile, and the same applies to Chilean products going to China such as wine, blueberries, and avocados. Also, I have been working closely with the Chilean Consulate in Guangdong to increase awareness of Chilean products in Shenzhen.

 

 

 

Shangri-La Hotel, Shenzhen Holds Moon Cake Tasting Event 2018

Shangri-La Hotel, Shenzhen recently held its moon cake-tasting event, inspiring guests with the hotel’s array of moon cake boxes and flavours.

There are 10 moon cake packages and three hampers presented by Shangri-La Hotel, Shenzhen this year.  Guests can still enjoy the very popular bright-coloured classy silk embroidery outer-box packaging, which presents an exquisite picture of vivid flowers and birds, koi and a butterfly figure. Apart from that, a leather case showcasing a vibe of grandness and decent will charm guests.

Traditional flavours like White Lotus Bean Paste and Egg Yolk and Mixed Nut Paste are still offered. The hotel also features a selection of creative new filling flavours like Milk with Egg Yolk Moon Cake, Crispy Longjing Tea Paste, and Mango and Egg Yolk Paste in Momoyama Skin. Classic and new flavours have been combined to offer a perfection of healthy delicacies.  This year’s Snow Skin Durian Moon Cake will not disappoint with the quality ingredients in the authentic Musang King Durian Paste. Each bite will be an addictive blend of smooth, sweet and generous filling.

Guests may enjoy a 30 per cent early-bird discount on the moon cake packages before 31 August 2018.  Free delivery within Shenzhen is offered for a minimum order worth RMB6, 000. For reservations and enquiries, guests may call (86 755) 8396 1366 or (86 755) 8396 1383.

Zero One Technology Festival Opening Ceremony

The Opening Ceremony Of Zero One Technology Festival 2018
Create The Universal Expo Of Black Technology

Zero One Technology Festival 2018 Trailer

Live Video

The “Zero One Technology Festival“, organized by Shenzhen Zero One Technology Co., LTD, under the guidance of China’s Industrial Development Alliance of Artificial Intelligence (AIIA), was held in Shenzhen I-Factory from 5th to 8th of July.  It has created an immersive future business space integrating multiple fields under the theme of “second nature”.

You may wonder, what is second nature? The general manager of Zero One Technology Festival Chen Jiangshan said that second nature is the inherent instinct that people live with technology. This technology festival will explore the second nature of the symbiosis between human and technology through the three modules of the intelligent technology exhibition, the summit forum, and the launch platform of black technology, and bring a new deep technology experience to consumers around the world.

GM of Zero One Chen Jiangshan Welcome Speech
GM of Zero One Chen Jiangshan Welcome Speech

30, 000 squares of intelligent science and technology, full scene exhibition, and new experience

The Festival covers an area of over 30,000 square meters. The intelligence technology expo covers artificial intelligence, robotics, drones, smart apparel, smart homes, smart medical, applications and security and virtual reality and all the cutting-edge areas. Compared to traditional science and technology festivals, it does not only display a single product but also embed products and technologies into commercial application scenarios but also creates an intelligent space for deep technology, full scene, and new experience. 

The intelligent technology exhibition is divided into “exploration”, “perception”, “release” and “awakening”. These four regions correspond to different intelligent spaces. The organizer has organized more than 100 black tech enterprises and more than 50 interactive experience show. There are many unicorn enterprises in the field of artificial intelligence among them, such as DJI, CEXO and Puppyrobot, jointly creating an AI+ scene experience space. In these four days, representatives from dozens of countries will show the world their latest entrepreneurial technologies. 

Instead of being an ordinary exhibition, the festival developed to be more like a futuristic full-scene cutting-edge science and technology show. “The Totem of Light”, “The Phantom Show”, “The Pulse of Urban” and other scientific and technological venues make “black technology” and contemporary aesthetics blend perfectly. At the scene, tourists can sit down and chat with robots, watch a robot runway show, taste a cup of coffee delivered by robots, or walk into AI business scenes such as unmanned shops and hospitals to have close contact with intelligent life scenes in the future. 

The cutting-edge press conference, the first launch of ten of the top black technology in the world

The festival is dedicated to creating the first platform for the launch of black technology. More than 10 cutting-edge press conferences will be held during the festival. Among them, more than most products are the world’s top black technology products. Many black technology products are released at the same time, which is rare in this market. It has also launched more than ten of the top black technology products, which has attracted the industry and media attention. 

As the world’s first full-scene immersive technology exhibition, CEXO brought its most dazzling and cutting-edge “Real Steel Exoskeleton” on stage. “Real steel exoskeleton” brought the independent research and development of the world’s first power packages to arm exoskeletons fingers (CEXO – 01), and the waist powered exoskeleton (CEXO – W02), to have close interaction with the audience on the scene.

In the field of brainwave, we have the world’s leading brainwave head-wear products developed by BRUN Technology, which can provide an EEG recognition system for industrial applications. It has the characteristics of high accuracy and high speed of EEG control. You can wear a brain cap with dozens of EEG capture points, and you’ll be able to control the characters in a 3D game. 

Midstereo, a leading domestic virtual reality technology company will launch the world’s most advanced backlit naked eye 3D product and redefine the naked eye 3D in the field of stereoscopic vision BrainCF, the world’s leading manufacturer of brain machines, launched the new brain machines on the spot. It comprehensively improves the performance and efficiency, leading the industry evolution. DTing will launch the world’s top bio-control products that can be used in the mobile terminal gestures, robot, mechanical arm control, smart TV gestures, and other areas, under the open AI era of new interactive way. 

Puppyrobot launched their new products at Zero One. Among them, LOLO robot can carry out planned cleaning for AI voice interaction and visual planning navigation, intelligent obstacle avoidance, education for children, and even home environment monitoring. Most importantly, you can manage your health and become your family doctor. You can realize one-key alarm and call your family remotely. Puppyrobot’s driverless cars “puppy” are also showing off the black technology of transportation, solving the problem of “last mile” community travel. 

Industry leaders’ summit, artificial intelligence unicorns talk about the future 

At the industry leaders’ summit, dozens of industry leaders from home and abroad jointly look forward to the “national strategic vision and reality of artificial intelligence” and explore “the next super species of 2018” at the Zero One Technology Festival. In these four days, they have been constantly brainstorming the top ideas, communicating with 12 top-level wisdom collisions, delivering 20 keynote speeches of industry leaders and talking about the future of the global technology industry. 

The industry leaders’ summit is divided into four major themes: industry, life, art, and culture. Steve Mann, the father of wearable computers, Fei Lianghong, Amazon AWS chief cloud computing technology consultant, Yan Zhijie, the chief scientist of voice interaction intelligence of Alibaba DAMO Academy – machine intelligence technology laboratory, Zhang Rui, the CEO of ARTrobot,  Song Yuegang, the chairman of Pangolin Robot Corp., Ltd and others industry leaders will be here. The summit focused on AI vision, service robots and other topics of greatest concern in the field of artificial intelligence. There will also be “Chinese style opportunity of AI”, “new power of AI”, “double liberation of intelligence and people” and “unlimited possibilities of AI and art”. Business trends in the era of artificial intelligence are in full view.

It has to be mentioned that the host place of the first Zero One Technology Festival was chosen in Shekou I-Factory in Shenzhen, it was previously the factory of Guangdong Jiangmen Isn Float Glass. It was the “experimental field of reform and opening up” in 1985. The Zero One Technology Festival invested hundreds of millions of Chinese Yuan to transform a small harbor between mountains and seas into a science and technology ideal country, which means to connect the past with the future. 

All products and technologies do not exist in isolation but are applied to real scenes in this show. It allows the technologies such as artificial intelligence and service robots to be embedded and connected with life scenes to create an immersive technology experience. It’s also a big no man’s land, all the smart office, the smart hotel, the smart business, the smart medical, the smart health and others come at one time, in the city of the future to build a technological ecosystem of the future. More than 10 revolutionary new technology launches from around the world. It is considered the most exclusive launch, which allows the users to take the deep technology to the end. It aims to create a Chinese version of CES, and Shenzhen, a city known as China’s Silicon Valley, is once again become the focus of the world.

Buy Tickets: http://www.huodongxing.com

Official website: http://www.zeroone-tech.com

Event Date: Thursday, July 5, 2018 – 8:00am – Sunday, July 8, 2018 – 11:30pm
Pricing Info: 299 RMB;1999 RMB;2999 RMB; 8000RMB
Booking Phone Number: 010-59037400
Place Address:  No.8, Haiwan Road, Shekou Industrial Zone, Shenzhen I-Factory 深圳市南山区海湾路8号蛇口价值工厂

Experience the passion of Latin dancing with free classes

Every Sunday afternoon at the Civic Center, you can hear the sound of Latin music. If you follow that exotic sound, you will find a group of people from all over the world dancing. Watching from the sides will be a larger group of locals, who are fascinated by the music and dancing, but are perhaps just a touch too shy to join in. If you do happen to be one of the spectators, don’t be shy. Just join in because that’s exactly what the group is all about.

 

The Latin dance classes are a free course started by Patrice Guilemond, a French engineer who has been living in Shenzhen since 2011. The classes are now organized by Oswaldo Loor, while Patrice focuses his time on his family after the birth of his child.

Patrice Guilemond, the original founder

In the beginning, Patrice used to invite his friends to dance, but they didn’t know how, so he taught them. “At first it was between friends, but little by little, friends invited their friends and it grew like this,” explained Patrice.

 

According to Patrice, salsa, and dancing in general, is a great way to meet people and make new friends. It’s also an activity where you can have fun while also burning a few extra calories

 

He also said that dancing can help us discover our true self and gain confidence. “Of course at first, the shyness will prevent you to achieve your true potential, but you’ll see you’ll gradually raise your self-confidence and improve yourself.”

Oswaldo Loor, the current organizer

 

Oswaldo comes from Ecuador, the heart of Latin America, but he admits he didn’t know how to dance before coming to China. “In Ecuador, we learn to dance since we are little kids, but my only interest back then was reading comics and adventure books,” said Oswaldo, adding that he kept postponing learning to dance for different reasons.

 

“When I came to China, at the beginning I was bored with nothing to do as I didn’t have many friends, and someone told me there was a salsa party at Coco Park. I thought that in Ecuador I was a terrible dancer, but here for sure it would be ok, but after I arrived at the party I saw that everybody was dancing so elegantly, so again I was sitting at the party just looking at the others dance,” Oswaldo recalled.

 

Step by step, however, Oswaldo learned to dance better and better by attending different dancing parties across the city. One day, he joined Patrice’s course and the two began to invite more friends to join the classes.

Adrian Esquivel from Colombia

“We do not only teach salsa, but also bachata, kizomba, and a bit of reggaeton, and we are looking to add other cool dances. We currently have more than 660 members in our group and every day it grows more and more. It’s scientifically proven that dancing works in the brain to make you happier,” said Oswaldo.

 

Currently, there are four instructors teaching the class in rotation, namely Adrian Esquivel from Colombia, Daniel Canosa from Spain,  Jenny Wu from China, and Amga Gamboa, whose parents originate from both Colombian & Mongolia.

Amga grew up in Colombia where he learned to dance salsa, merengue and other dances with his family since he was a child. “Now I am dancing all the time, be it cooking, showering or cleaning the house,” said Amga.

For Amga, Chinese people are a bit shy. “When I first came to Chia, people just passed by or stood there watching us dance. But gradually, after they listen to the music and feel the passion, they fall in love with dancing and Latin culture.”

Amga Gamboa, of Colombian-Mongolian descent

“Some people feel lonely, but when they dance in the group, they feel comfortable and not lonely anymore, some even find their life partner via dancing. Others come becaue it is a kind of sport for them, but later they realize that it’s also a hobby with passion and more feelings,” said Adrian.

 

Daniel said he fell in love with the atmosphere of dancing when he first joined a party in Madrid in 2014. “People from all ages were smiling, dancing…The vibe was amazing. From then on I started taking classes every week,” said Daniel.

Daniel Canosa, another one of the talented instructors

“Salsa makes people happy so I want to spread happiness throughout the world. It’s also amazing to see the student’s faces when they are finally able to make a difficult step successfully,” said Daniel.

 

For Jenny, salsa is a kind of interesting and joyful dance. She wants to make more people join the salsa community in order to enjoy themselves.

Jenny Wu, Salsa instructor

 

Isabel, one of the students joining the group, commented that she benefits from the course a lot and always invites her friends to join.

 

“I met Adrian, one of the teachers from the Salsa Beginners Group, in the elevator of my building and he invited me to join the class,” said Ginevra, another student of the course.

Isabel, one of the students

“The activity is really well organized. The location (Civic Center) is beautiful. The classes vary every week, trying to cover different styles and aspects of Latin dances, from basic steps to musicality, interpretation, and self-expression,” said Ginevra.

Another student, Ginerva

Yannis from Greece found the class on ShenzhenParty.com and joined the group. “All the guys that run the salsa group – Oswaldo, Amga, Adrian, and Daniel – are great guys, and very helpful and willing to offer great advice. They are cool, upbeat, and fun guys. Like most Latino people I’ve met in my life, they are so optimistic and expressive!” said Yannis who started dancing salsa and bachata about two years ago.

Yannis, from Greece

Additionally, the group has now their own party, every Wednesday and Friday at the Mr. Wong Bar at the Hilton Futian. They also invite different instructors with rich dancing experience to share in the class from time to time. For example, Aaron from Colombia with 15 years of dancing experience. Stephanie and Vivian, who both have their own studios have also been invited. Also, Alex, a Chinese national that organizes salsa parties, also sponsors drinks for the class.

 

If you want to join their group, feel free to add Oswaldo Loor on WeChat. His ID is ‘osloor’ and his phone number is 13380386829.

 

Local Comedy Stands Up At SZN COMEDY Open Mic Night

I’m at my first stand up comedy open mic night in Shenzhen.  A small, respectable-looking Chinese woman takes to the stage to do a set. I’ll be honest with you. She wasn’t exactly what I had in mind when I imagined the type of people performing.

Within a minute, she’s made more dirty jokes than I can keep track of and she’s doing an impression of oral sex on stage. Half the audience bursts out laughing while the other half don’t know where to look. Either way, she has got our attention.

Alice Photo

By the time she has walked off stage, she’s left us with one of the raunchiest sets I’ve seen live. As I was going to find out that night, that’s what the Open Mic Night organized by SZN COMEDY from Eastern Liberty is all about. It’s about providing local comics a platform to perform, giving audiences an alternative to the party scene, and ultimately, connecting those audiences with these comics in a meaningful way.

Earlier that night, I sat down with Mr. Ryan from SZN COMEDY, which organizes these open mic nights as well as monthly shows. Through our chat and the night that followed, I was introduced to an exciting and burgeoning scene in Shenzhen.

Hilton Photo

Whenever a new scene emerges in a city, it’s curious to know what pushed the people involved to make it happen. For Mr. Ryan, he couldn’t believe that a city like Shenzhen didn’t already have a comedy community.

“I was going down there to Hong Kong once a month for a while for an open mic, but I started thinking why a city like Shenzhen didn’t have something like this. I did a bit of research and found out that people had tried to do one-off shows every now and then, but there wasn’t any sort of stable organization that the comedians can count on being there.”

Looking around the open mic show that evening, the scene seemed well developed. Mr. Ryan was laidback as the venue gradually filled up with regulars who greeted him as they passed us at the bar. There was a relaxed vibe and everyone seemed comfortable in their own skin. In the very beginning, as Mr. Ryan recalls, it was somewhat more hectic.

“Back in 2016. Our first show was Cinco De Mayo in Frankie’s, Nanshan actually, and they gave us the opportunity to use that space. It was a free show and so everyone was really excited for comedy and it was Cinco De Mayo so it was some party. That day had to be around a hundred people. The crowd was kind of like a wild animal that night. So we learned. We got to control the crowd a little bit.”

Like any good comic, SZN COMEDY took some pointers from that first show and made some adjustments. Mr. Ryan found it made a big difference.

“We started selling tickets to the show in advance so people started becoming a bit more invested in the show. They are not going to just laugh when they are supposed to laugh, but they are not going to just be on their phones all show, because they paid to be there.”

One of the things I was most curious about coming into the show was the makeup of the crowd. I was wondering if it would it be mainly expats or would locals come down to the show too, and beyond that, how did the composition of the audience influence the type of jokes being told.

“I think that’s one of the things that people get excited with our scene. You’re going to see tonight that around half the crowd is Chinese and the other half is expats, and from that half, everyone is from somewhere different. I think that helps a little bit because it keeps everyone fresh, friendly, and open.

I just try to feel the room out when I’m hosting. If it’s mostly expats, foreigners, whatever you want to call them – us – then yeah, you just adjust a little bit. You can add more cultural references, but with Chinese, their laughs might come more from reactions and the expressions on your face and your body language.”

You can see what he means with regards to how different parts of the crowd respond to different material. One American comedian who has come all the way from Hong Kong performs a set of spot-on impressions packed full of pop-culture references. A big chunk of the audience is in stitches, but for others, the references are maybe too obscure. While later another American comedian gets up, this time from Guangzhou. His set is full of energy as he relates his experience of an expat living in China and the other sections of the audience find it easier to connect to what it is he is saying.

It’s interesting to talk to Mr. Ryan because while he started out in the scene as a comic traveling to Hong Kong to perform at open mic nights, he no longer sees himself as a comedian per se. For him, it’s more important for SZN COMEDY to provide a platform for local comedians.

“I honestly don’t do sets anymore. Our company focuses on bringing comics and crowds together. I think sometimes that fails because the people that are organizing are trying to be the stars of the show. Right now, everyone that is involved is comfortable because our organization doesn’t run like that. We generally just want to make a good product for the city.

We try to get the word out as much as we can about local comics because that’s really what this scene is about. We really try to grow the scene here with local comics.”

It’s an approach that has helped some local comedians start to make a name for themselves. There are a few comics who started out at open mic that are now doing paid shows in Shenzhen and elsewhere in the PRD area. When you hear Mr. Ryan talk about these guys, you can tell he’s genuinely invested in seeing them be the best comics they can be.

“Troy Lewis is the big up and comer in Shenzhen right now. Recently, he did a show in Shuiwei. Amazing show. High energy. He’s putting in a lot of work and it’s paying off. He was in the Dongguan show we did a few months ago. Dongguan loves Troy Lewis. Just to be able to say he’s part of the Shenzhen scene is great, because we’ve been doing shows together for years now.

Linus Leas is another up and comer. He came onto the Shenzhen scene a few months ago, but his stuff is very fresh. He was the opening act for the Dongguan show as well and the experience he grabbed that night can be applied to all the material he is writing.”

As luck would have it, Leas actually popped into the open mic night later that evening to perform a set and it’s clear to see why Mr. Ryan is so excited about him. Leas is Cambodian-American. As an Asian-looking expat living in China, he’s got a rich amount of material to mine. While hearing about the typical expat experience in China might be a bit too familiar for some, Leas occupies a space which feels much fresher.

Leas’ set is undoubtedly one of the highlights of the evening, but in truth, I had a great time throughout the night. Whether it’s a first-timer getting up on the stage or a comic working on material for their next show, there’s just a really relaxed and positive vibe going on. It’s something that Mr. Ryan touched upon when explaining why they do these open mics.

They offer something for comics working on their set. “There’s always some crowd to perform in front of here. And I think that’s what comedians need. They need reactions from a real crowd. You will see people doing new jokes, fixing old jokes. You can’t do that on a paid show.”

Yet it’s also a safe environment for those who are just starting out. “We try to get that vibe out there. Super relaxed, no pressure. If you don’t want to go on stage, then that’s cool. If you do want to go on stage, then we will kind of help you out.”

Meanwhile, it’s about offering something different for the people of Shenzhen. “I think people are trying to find an alternative to that party scene, and that’s kind of what we are. Yeah, we are still at a bar, and yeah, you can still get a drink, but nobody is out there to get drunk. It attracts a certain type of person too. Generally, the people that come here are good people.”

Ultimately, it’s about bringing together foreigners and local Chinese for events and to share something they are all passionate about.

“There’s too many expat-only events or Chinese-only events, and the only other thing that brings these people together are parties. A concert is another one, but how often is that? So in this scene, even if we only get 20 or 25 people, for a crowd for an open mic, it’s cool, because in any other situation that would never happen. So that’s something that we actually try to focus on.”

SZN COMEDY organizes an open mic night every Sunday at LUNA Bar in Nanshan and every Thursday at MAMBO.

SZN COMEDY also hosts regular paid shows. They are typically held twice a month here in Shenzhen. For more info, add wechat: easternliberty86