Typhoon Vicente hits Hong Kong

It really was a stormy night and today you can totally see what damage typhoon Vicente caused when it hit Hong Kong last night. First of all: nothing happened to us and the office is okay too. After it was clear that typhoon signal no. 8 would be issued yesterday evening, which means that everybody should go home, we hurried and finished up packing your orders quickly, so that we could go home before the big rush of people. It was really raining heavily, everybody got soaking wet and you would see lots of broken and abandoned umbrellas and fallen branches of trees already in the evening. The supermarkets and subway stations were absolutely packed. The later the evening the stormier it got, the winds were very strong and it was really noisy outside. Around midnight even the strongest typhoon signal no. 10 was issued, which happened the last time in 1999.

This morning at 10 AM the signal was lowered, so all of us could come to the office. It was really amazing to step outside, as there were super few people (usually Hong Kong is packed) and lots of damages to be seen, especially fallen trees. We read in the news that more than 600 trees were uprooted and around 100 people injured, luckily nobody really severe. Today people in Hong Kong will be busy cleaning up. We will try to pack as many of your packages today as possible, although we missed a couple of hours already.

A typical view on the way to work today: Fallen trees everywhere

A typical view on the way to work today: Fallen trees everywhere

This big tree crashed on a children playground

This big tree crashed on a children playground

This used to be a simple street restaurant close to our office, now it is devastated

This used to be a simple street restaurant close to our office, now it is devastated

This advertising sign is totally broken

This advertising sign is totally broken

Lots of trees fell down on this basketball court opposite to our building

Lots of trees fell down on this basketball court opposite to our building

Also banners and signs came off shops and buildings

Also banners and signs came off shops and buildings

These construction fences flew all over the place

These construction fences flew all over the place

This big tree is blocking a whole road

This big tree is blocking a whole road

The terrace of a local restaurant near our office

The terrace of a local restaurant near our office

Another tree blocking the road, fortunately people can still pass it

Another tree blocking the road, fortunately people can still pass it

mt Masking Tape workshop in Japan

We want to go! In Japan you can visit special Masking tape workshops held by mt. In four different cities they regularly offer weekend classes called ‘mt school’ where you can craft with Washi Tape and also get professional instructions by Washi Tape crafters. We saw some pictures from a workshop in Yokohama, which look so inspiring. It just gives you wonderful ideas on what to use Washi tape for. The whole venue – usually a crafting or stationery shop – is decorated with tapes and of course there are lots and lots of mt tapes to buy. We think it’s a great idea to craft together in such a creative environment. If there was something like this in Hong Kong we would definitely go. Would you?

The entrance of the venue of the masking tape workshop in Yokohama

The entrance of the venue of the masking tape workshop in Yokohama

There is an extra mt section with lots and lots of Washi tapes

There is an extra mt section with lots and lots of Washi tapes

This looks so inviting: One of the crafting tables for the participants

This looks so inviting: One of the crafting tables for the participants

Great for inspiration: Some exhibits of Washi tape stationery

Great for inspiration: Some exhibits of Washi tape stationery

Super pretty boxes and wrapping embellished with Washi tape

Super pretty boxes and wrapping embellished with Washi tape

Incredible: Why not decorate a bird house with Washi Tape?

Incredible: Why not decorate a bird house with Washi Tape?

More examples of masking tape crafting

More examples of masking tape crafting

Participants of the workshop being creative

Participants of the workshop being creative

A great and simple idea: embellish mobiles with Washi tape

A great and simple idea: embellish mobiles with Washi tape

The decoration of the venue with Masking tape is just adorable

The decoration of the venue with Masking tape is just adorable

We want a car like this: the official mt school truck

We want a car like this: the official mt school truck

Cute Hello Kitty cards for McDonalds promotion in Hong Kong

Yahoo Deals Hong Kong just started a super kawaii Hello Kitty deal for an upcoming McDonald’s promotion. For 48 Hong Kong Dollars you can buy a set of four adorable Hello Kitty collector’s cards including a kawaii album. Till the beginning of October you can show your card when buying a drink out of certain product group and then get a free McDonald’s product on top. You can only get those special Hello Kitty cards in this Yahoo deal, McDonald’s will use different cards for the promotion throughout Hong Kong.

And the Hello Kitty cards are super adorable, who would not want to have them? Hello Kitty is dressed up as different fairy tale characters: Little Red Riding Hood, Frog Prince, The Ugly Duckling and the Wizard of Oz. There are two interchanging images on each card, so you also have a cool visual effect. Do you have a favourite card already? They are all really kawaii, but the wolf of the Little Red Riding Hood card just stole our heart away.

Those are the 4 sets you can get on Hong Kong Deals for the McDonalds promotion

Those are the 4 sets you can get on Hong Kong Deals for the McDonalds promotion

Hello Kitty as Little Red Riding Hood and wolf

Hello Kitty as Little Red Riding Hood and wolf

Hello Kitty as Frog and Princess

Hello Kitty as Frog and Princess

Hello Kitty as ugly duckling and pretty swan

Hello Kitty as ugly duckling and pretty swan

Hello Kitty as Lion and Tin Man

Hello Kitty as Lion and Tin Man

This is the cute album that comes with the cards

This is the cute album that comes with the cards

Dragon Boat Races in Hong Kong

Last Saturday it was time for a fun piece of Chinese Tradition. It was the day of the Tuen Ng Festival (Dragon Boat Festival), so at many places in Hong Kong there were action-packed races, where you could watch numerous teams compete on the water against each other. And you were really close to the action as spectators could just stand on the beach, watch the teams race towards them and congratulate them once they arrived at the shore. It was really a great atmosphere with lots of cheering and laughing. Many teams were corporate amateur teams that enjoyed the event a lot, they wore funny hats, dressed up in costumes or had their own battle calls. After the races each team was soaking wet and totally exhausted, but they all looked very happy.

The dragon boats raced right to the beach

The dragon boats raced right to the beach

A dragon head on one of the boats

A dragon head on one of the boats

This team wore funny hats - mostly Angry Birds characters

This team wore funny hats - mostly Angry Birds characters

The Beach at this venue was totally crowded with spectators

The Beach at this venue was totally crowded with spectators

Hello Kitty Airplane going to Hong Kong

One of our team members will be going to Taiwan for a short trip soon and discovered that you can even take a special Hello Kitty plane between Hong Kong and Taipei. What pleasant news. Isn’t that the dream of every kawaii-Fan? So we did a bit of research and found some articles about this. Those new cute airplanes were actually launched a couple of months ago already and give you the whole kawaii package. Not just is the airplane painted with lovely Hello Kittys from the outside, but EVERYTHING is Hello Kitty inside too. You have Hello Kitty meals, pillows, soap, paper cups, headrest covers or boarding passes. And those are just a few things. Obviously there are more than 100 in flight items. And of course they have special Check-In counters and terminals too, at least in some cities.

All you Hello Kitty Fans probably know that the Hello Kitty planes were already launched in 2005, but in 2009 they stopped service as the licensing agreement between Sanrio and Taiwan Eva Air expired. So from now on Eva Air offers 3 Hello Kitty planes again to various destinations in Asia. Wouldn’t a flight in one of these cute planes be the perfect incentive for a future trip to and within Asia? Still our team member will not be going to Taiwan in one of those special planes. But she surely hopes that she gets to see one.

A plane never looked cuter from the outside

A plane never looked cuter from the outside

Inside it gets even cuter - there are more than 100 Hello Kitty in flight items

Inside it gets even cuter - there are more than 100 Hello Kitty in flight items

The food is almost too cute to eat and all flight attendants wear Hello Kitty aprons

The food is almost too cute to eat and all flight attendants wear Hello Kitty aprons

Also the tiniest and most common items are in Hello Kitty design

Also the tiniest and most common items are in Hello Kitty design

The children's meals are especially kawaii

The meals for children are especially kawaii

Cute Hello Kitty tiles in Hong Kong

Every time you walk through Hong Kong you discover so many cute things, even in places you would not expect it. When we passed a store for bathroom interiors the other day, we couldn’t believe what we saw: adorable Hello Kitty tiles. So we stopped and took a look. The designs were really cute and actually quite discreet with lots of red, black and white. The suggestions on how to arrange the tiles and pictures with examples of Hello Kitty bathrooms and kitchens looked very nice, even for people who are not hardcore Hello Kitty fans. Isn’t it a funny idea to have some rooms covered with Hello Kitty tiles? Would you want it?

Lovely Hello Kitty tiles displayed in a shop in Hong Kong

Lovely Hello Kitty tiles displayed in a shop in Hong Kong

Hello Kitty cover story in Hong Kongs U Travel magazine

What a wonderful place to work. This month’s U Travel magazine – a Hong Kong magazine for mainly young people writing about good travel opportunities in Asian countries – has a huge cover story about Sanrio, the home of Hello Kitty. As the Japanese headquarter in Tokyo is moving, they used this occasion to open the company doors for an exclusive insight. It is a huge cover story with lots of colourful pictures and information… all in Chinese of course. But it’s definitely worth checking it out.

The adorbale cover of Hong Kongs U Travel magazine

The adorbale cover of Hong Kongs U Travel magazine

It’s all about Hello Kitty on these pages, that’s for sure. The photos of all those pretty details in the Sanrio building are just amazing.

It will be Hello Kitty on the next 12 pages as well

It will be Hello Kitty on the next 12 pages as well

It probably is the dream of every kawaii Fan. When you work for Sanrio you can’t escape Hello Kitty. Employees get drinks in cute Hello Kitty bottles, they can play Hello Kitty videogames on adorbale machines, there are amazing interactive Hello Kitty installations on the floor and big Hello Kitty walls next to the elevators.

Look at all those cute pictures of the Sanrio interior - it is a dream come true

Look at all those cute pictures of the Sanrio interior - it is a dream come true

Of course the article also includes a Sanrio history. Did you know that the company started out as a greeting card company in the 1960s? In the 1970s then they developed the Hello Kitty character and this is when the success story really started.

A brief Sanrio history - Hello Kitty made them famous

A brief Sanrio history - Hello Kitty made them famous

Hello Kitty in the course of time. Fortunately the cute cat hasn’t changed much. Sanrio just knows what’s good.

Now and then - Hello Kitty has not changed much. We like it!

Now and then - Hello Kitty has not changed much. We like it!

Japanese designer Yuko Yamamoto invented Hello Kitty. When asked what is her favourite Hello Kitty character she answers that she is still working on it. So we can look forward to much more cuteness.

Hello Kitty creator Yuko Yamamoto answers questions

Hello Kitty creator Yuko Yamamoto answers questions

Dim Sum lunch with our new team member

The modes4u team is growing constantly, this week we welcomed our new team member Sylvania. She is supporting us in accounting from now on and will help with other administrative tasks around the office as well. We are very happy that she is with us, not least because it means going out for a Dim Sum lunch with the whole company. What a nice tradition to welcome new staff. The table was filled with a lot of food, and although the portions look small, everybody was very full afterwards.

Bianca used Sylvania’s welcome lunch to deliver on the promise she made at her welcome lunch last year. She finally tried the chicken feet – a very common dish in Hong Kong. And what a surprise, she didn’t like them. It meant more chicken feet for Lok and Sylvania, who loved the dish very much. Would you have tried it?

Welcome to the team, Sylvania.

Our table in the Chinese restaurant for Dim Sum

Our table in the Chinese restaurant for Dim Sum

Lots of delicious dishes in small servings

Lots of delicious dishes in small servings

We had a good view of the busy kitchen with hundreds of steamer baskets

We had a good view of the busy kitchen with hundreds of steamer baskets

Karen, Lok and Sylvania are busy eating and drinking tea

Karen, Lok and Sylvania are busy eating and drinking tea

The whole modes4u team in front of the restaurant

The whole modes4u team in front of the restaurant

Bianca kept her promise and tries chicken feet - yummy

Bianca kept her promise and tries chicken feet - yummy

Living next door to…a giant tortoise

Hong Kong is full of surprises. It could even happen that one day you share the elevator with a giant tortoise that is just being taken out for a walk by its owner. Yeah, sounds pretty unlikely, doesn’t it? Still it happened to our team member Bianca. Not only was she quite impressed by meeting such an unusual pet, but also by the routine of the situation. Because the tortoise goes for a walk every day and knows exactly what to do: Ride the elevator, ‘run’ to the exit and wait for someone to open the door (or just run against it until somebody does). As soon as it is outside it can stroll around, always watched by its owner, who doesn’t have a very hard job in doing so. And getting its picture taken didn’t disturb the massive reptile either – it’s probably already used  to being a little celebrity.

It was an encounter of a different kind but definitely unforgettable – at least for the humans involved.

The giant tortoise heading from the elevator to the door

The giant tortoise heading from the elevator to the door

Cute Hello Kitty Cup Noodles

Every now and then you see cute Hello Kitty food in the supermarkets of Hong Kong if there are special promotions or holidays. Then you’ll find Hello Kitty sweets, cookies or even whole food series like pasta or sauces. But now we discovered the little cat on an item that couldn’t be more typical for Hong Kong: Cup Noodles. Instant Noodles are sooo common and popular in Asia, every supermarket has large shelves with lots of different flavours and brands, every convenience store holds at least a small selection of instant noodles. And now we found cute Hello Kitty Noodles with soy sauce flavour. Do you think the noodles will be shaped like Hello Kitty? If we get some we’ll let you know.

what a nice sight in the instant noodle shelf of the supermarket

what a nice sight in the instant noodle shelf of the supermarket

cute Hello Kitty instant noodles

cute Hello Kitty instant noodles

this one has soy sauce flavour

this one has soy sauce flavour

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