Hong Kong is a place brimming with talented and intriguing people. In our new 27 Questions column, we get up close and personal with notable Hong Kong personalities, learning about their whims and aversions, pivotal life moments, and hopes and dreams — all revealed in roughly the same amount of time it takes to sit through a round of speed dating. 

This week, we talk to Bohan Qiu — senior PR executive at a luxury e-commerce site and co-founder of Totem Collective. Formerly a student of journalism and politics at the University of Hong Kong, Qiu’s extracurricular activities — including a stint spent modelling in Paris — resulted in a career shift towards the world of fashion. Known for his prolific interest in how fashion exerts macrocosmic influence over the social and political mainstream, Qiu spends what little free time one imagines he has writing as a contributor to SCMP Style. We get to know one of Hong Kong’s hardest-working fashion insiders below.

Name: Bohan Qiu
Age: 24
Neighbourhood: Wan Chai
Occupation: PR executive

Bohan Qiu
The living and breathing embodiment of Mr Porter’s “ahead of the curve” positioning, Qiu also supplements his impressive professional credentials with a prolific output of fashion writing at ‘SCMP Style’.
1. What's the best meal you've ever eaten in Hong Kong?

At Old Bazaar Kitchen in Wan Chai. They cook the best bak kuh teh, lamb stew and the most incredible chilled squid!

2. Who is your role model?

Anybody who champions his profession while still remaining very down to earth.

3. What was your first job?

Modelling.

4. What's your drink of choice?

Espresso Martini.

5. When was the last time you drove a car?

When I passed my driver’s license exam!

6. Are you a morning person or a night owl?

Oh, night owl for sure.

7. Which phone app could you not live without?

WeChat!

8. If you could only eat one thing for the rest of your life, what would it be?

Hot pot.

9. What do you hate most about living in Hong Kong?

Small living spaces! I dream about a little house with a garden.

Bohan Qiu

10. What is the top destination on your bucket list?

Xinjiang!

11. What is your greatest fear?

Rats.

12. When did you last ride the Star Ferry?

When I was on my way to an event at Harbour City. I’ve always loved riding the Star Ferry. It feels like I’m between two spaces and don’t really exist anywhere. It’s one of the few places in Hong Kong where I feel at peace.

13. What is your biggest guilty pleasure?

My Nintendo Switch! I’m actually quite a big gamer.

14. What's one movie everyone should see?

Happy Together by Wong Kar-wai.

15. If you could live anywhere else in the world, where would it be?

Berlin, for sure. It’s a city where everyone can always reinvent themselves.

16. What makes someone a real Hongkonger?

When you know how to order at a local restaurant with all the correct abbreviations and slang!

17. If you could invite any five people in the world to your dream dinner party, who would they be?

Liu Wen, Haider Ackermann, Tilda Swinton, Timothée Chalamet and Du Juan.

18. What is one song you know all the lyrics to?

“The Suburbs” by Arcade Fire.

19. Where do you go when you want to be alone?

I take the Star Ferry.

20. If you had to describe Hong Kong in one word, what would it be?

Transient.

21. What is your favourite scent in the whole world?

Fresh laundry.

22. Are you a good cook?

I think I’m not bad! My signature dish is my grandma’s recipe for a special type of Chiuchow-style satay noodle that’s topped with beef and Chinese kale. I’ve floored people of every conceivable nationality with this dish.

Bohan Qiu

23. Do you have a catchphrase?

“INSANEEEEEE!”

24. Have you ever experience love at first sight? Tell us about it.

When I was 18 years old, I had an incredibly cliché yet romantic encounter of the Before Sunrise kind in Budapest.

25. How many pairs of shoes do you currently own?

Roughly 50–60? Nowadays I wear two pairs made by my Belgian friend’s brand ROMBAUT. They’re uber cool vegan leather sneakers that also happen to be incredibly comfy.

26. Would you rather never be alone for single moment or be alone for the rest of your life?

I can’t be alone for too long. I need human energy to sustain myself!

27. What's the last dream you remember waking up from?

I was in a Berlin club, trying to introduce gong therapy in a corridor adjoining two rooms. I was figuring out how I could persuade a bouncer to smuggle the gong into the club!

Randy Lai
Watches Editor
Having worked in the Australian digital media landscape for over 5 years, Randy has extensive experience in men's specialist categories such as classic clothing, watches and spirits. He is partial to mid-century chronographs and a nice chianti.