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Fashion, Recently Opened

Emporium Launch by Baz Luhrmann


Celebrities and A listers recently enjoyed a fabulous and extraordinary night at CFS Retail’s Emporium Melbourne official opening of the shopping centre and were captivated by a mobile movie kind of experience put on by legendary Australian director Baz Luhrmann.
Luhrmann, who most recently directed box office smash The Great Gatsby, put his unmistakable touch on party proceedings that took retail launches in Melbourne to another level. This was a curated production of the highest magnitude that was able to wow The World Loves Melbourne and the other 1500 guests.


Celebs, apart from the compelling director Baz Luhrmann, included actor Vince Colosimo, singer Megan Washington, model and reporter Rachael Finch, model Abbey Lee Kershaw, actress and model Isabel Lucas, singer and TV celebrity Natalie Bassingthwaighte, singer Harrison Craig, socialites Michael and Lindy Klim, singer Timomatic, Real Housewives of Melbourne stars and actor Isabelle Cornish (sorry if we've left someone out, image below from official collection).
Powerhouse owners CFS Retail and Singapore’s Government Investment Corporation selected Luhrmann to direct the event for his ability to take an old classic (like the Emporium) and turn it into a contemporary icon, such as The Great Gatsby or his equally popular film Moulin Rogue, which was released in 2001. The $1.2 billion Emporium Melbourne was created out of the largely ­disused Myer Lonsdale Street building, and we watched for years as the impressive new shopping precinct took shape.Boasting more than 200 retail outlets including notable international and Aussie brands, the centre is fully leased, though a few tenants are yet to open.


The World Loves Melbourne walked several tours of the creative set up and imbibed the high quality food and wine, and festive ambience. Some 100 performers performed in Luhrmann’s production that included several references to Melbourne’s history — from the Australian Open, the Melbourne Cup and even outback Australia. For The World Loves Melbourne this was a benchmark in retail launches, I'm not sure we will see again in terms of scale and brilliance.


We were told some 5 million shoppers have passed through the doors since they opened a few months ago. The World Loves Melbourne is not surprised and we are a big fan of Emporium Melbourne as a centre that can hold its head up internationally and is hugely positive for Melbourne (image below courtesy of official collection).
Recently Emporium Melbourne added Uniqlo and Top Shop stores to its collection of iconic brand names and the cafe court (not food court) is one of the Melbourne's best spaces for casual dining boasting notaries such as Jimmy Grants, Charlie's Burgers and Pho Nom (a personal favourite).


The Emporium is huge, yet boasts diversity and interesting spaces. The joint venture between Colonial First State and the Singapore Government’s Investment Corporation, spans a massive 48,000 square metres and has full occupancy with 225 tenants.


Not only did The World Loves Melbourne enjoy each of the "sets" on the night but enjoyed following Baz Luhrmann around, who made himself accessible posing for selfies and chatting with the guests and performers. He oozes style and charm. Unlike many politicians Baz is a man of the people. At one stage he pulled a fashion blogger out of the crowd and featured her in front of the media.


Check out this lavish buffet table, including the best ham I've ever tasted, and some glorious terrines.


Emporium Melbourne's launch spared no expense when it came to cocktails and other beverages.


You may find yourself dancing with a sailor...


Or in a bed of gladioli celebrating the 60's...


Or suspended above a giant tennis ball with confetti cannons in full cry...


What celebration is complete without confetti?


Melbourne loves a party and the punters were into it...


I managed to snap Baz as he passed by, if not from behind as he engaged our 60's singer...

This was a spectacular night, with kudos to Baz Luhrmann, the owners, performers and all associated.