Wednesday, January 27, 2010

starbucks nation

This is not your ordinary Starbucks.
We often talk about the uniformity of fast food chains everywhere in the world... McDonald's, Burger King, Kentucky Fried Chicken, and in recent years coffee chains like Starbucks, Seattle's Best Coffee, etc have also joined the army of globalization. There's always good and bad associated with such phenomenon - good in the sense that since each outlet should look more or less the same as one another, there's a sense of familiarity built up; "bad" in the sense that there's no character within each outlet, as they are all predictable and standardized everywhere in the world. But this particular location, is not your ordinary Starbucks. If it weren't for the siren-logo coffee cups or the shouts of "tall caramel macchiato, skim no foam" over the counter, one would not have associated this charming cafe as the ubiquitous Starbucks. Modeled after "bing sut", aka old-school style Hong Kong cafe that originated circa 1960's, this particular Starbucks on Duddell Street, Central, is designed by local interior decor guru G.O.D. . The objective is to re-create the laid back cafe style at that time (a little bit Wong Kar Wai feel) with vintage pieces and handwritten translated Chinese menu items for that authentic old-timey atmosphere. If Mad Men took place in Hong Kong, this "bing sut" Starbucks could easily fit in one of the episodes.

This lady dressed up in a 60's style Chinese outfit and fit the picture perfectly.
Handwritten Chinese-translated menu items
1971 poster
Starbucks "menu"

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