News by Madeleine Oakley
Chanel has announced the postponement of their 2020 Cruise collection show, which was originally planned for November 6th. Political unrest and anti-government protests have caused upheaval in the region, making it the sensible choice to not go ahead with the event.
Originally unveiled in Paris earlier this year, the Cruise collection is Chanel’s first fashion offering without Karl Lagerfeld in charge, following his death in February. Chanel publicised their plans in July to stage the show in Hong Kong, despite the fact that protests were already abundant throughout the area. Many were shocked by this announcement and therefore, Chanel’s decision to reschedule the show to a “later and more appropriate moment” was received with understanding.
The protests in Hong Kong are in response to the extradition bill and include pro-democracy marches, some drawing crowds of over a million citizens. Protestors have torn down facial recognition cameras and caused upheaval to transport, including the cancellation of many flights from the airport. Other luxury events have been cancelled, including the Tatler Ball and the opening of a new shopping site in Kowloon, which was planned for November. The demonstrations have been happening for three months and the end is uncertain.
In the short term, the cancellation of Chanel’s show and similar luxury functions will affect the local economy, as each event would have brought in a few million pounds for the hospitality and travel sectors. The long term consequences are still yet to be felt, but it is unlikely that companies will want to base their future events in the region. Moreover, Hong Kong retail sales in July were down by 11.4%, meaning that brands will be likely to concentrate their efforts on other areas of the world. Chanel has nine boutiques in Hong Kong and these may also see a slump in sales.
Despite the postponing of their show, Chanel has confirmed that their latest resort collection will still be available to buy in Hong Kong from November 6th.