Hi, where are you from and how old are you?
Singapore. Older than Leonardo, younger than Clooney.
Tell us about your website basketcase.asia. What’s the inspiration behind this website?
There are a lot of cool but indecipherable websites in Asia, and even if the look or design is great, you can’t buy what you want. Basketcase came about because we thought it’d be great to have a site where all the most Insanely Awesome Stuff in Asia can be featured in English (from robots to bikes to leather boots) and people around the world can read about it and buy it. Kind of like a “one link to rule them all”. It’s curated by me and it’s updated everyday.
What do you think of the local Men’s Fashion scene in Singapore? Where would you recommend your mate to do some serious good quality shopping locally?
Scene still a bit nascent, I reckon, if you’re talking about the designers. A lot of local men’s fashion tend to be of the overdesigned “look at me” variety – stuff with too many pockets, epaulettes and details, and I’m a minimalist fan. If you want to make something bespoke go to Swagger. The shopping scene is fine, there’s COS, Club21 and my favourite of the moment is Robinson’s Orchard men’s department. The labels are beautifully curated, the walk is a pleasure, and the selection is quite stylish. That should be anyone’s first stop.
Tell us about yourself. What is your mantra in life?
I’m pretty sure you’re a global traveler. Can you please share with us some of your most memorable travel experience?
Surf camp in Kerala was quite an experience, it’s perfect for beginners, and you’ll be surprised by how cool and placid the place is – it’s like Seminyak on a cliff. You get up at 6am and go surfing till 10am, then back to the villa for a big breakfast. Yoga in the evening. Read or nap in between. Also just got back from Russia where I stayed in a tiny Soviet-era apartment. Visited St. Petersburg which is really stunning, The Hermitage is possibly the grandest museum in the world. Berlin was also an eye opener, as we stayed in the East side near the wall. It’s still very affordable and not overrun, but it’s gonna be a hot new tech spot soon. Perennial favourites are Bali and Bangkok.
Any plans for the next 5 years?
Build more websites. Finish my book. Watch Daft Punk in concert. Travel to new places (Cuba, Bhutan, doing the El Camino pilgrimage in Spain, avoid Beirut and Afghanistan, and definitely do one of the Poles.) Find a way to work remotely so I can combine these things. Flight to Rio for World Cup 2014 already booked.
Tell us your dream.
I was stalked by the ghost of JD Salinger.
What is the 1st thing you do every morning just after you get out of bed?
Feed the cats. Even if I’m hungover.
Favourite movie and why?
Brazil by Terry Gilliam. A fantastic allegory about bureaucracy, governance and paranoid. Fantastic set design which inspired my apartment’s grey look, and with so many layers and nuances you keep discovering new things – which I still do even after 10 viewings. Honorable mention: Annie Hall and Manhattan, cos I’m a wretched romantic and big Woody Allen fan.
In 3 words how do you feel right now?
Optimistic. Humbled. Restless.