Those who couldn't get enough of the Top Marques Shanghai luxury and supercar show that concluded earlier this month will probably fall in love with a newly opened department store in Haikou in southern Hainan Province.
The store boasts some extreme luxury items on its shelves. Among them are two Vertu Monza cellphones selling at a heart-stopping price of 52,000 yuan (US$6,600) each. Vertu, a subsidiary of Nokia, made Monza limited edition phones to celebrate the classic racetracks of the world. There are only 1,000 Monza handsets worldwide. That makes the phones so special, customers at the Haikou store are not allowed to touch them unless they are going to make a purchase.
Other luxury items include a Mont Blanc pen priced at 9,800 yuan and a WMF kitchen knife retailing 6,900 yuan.
While citizens accuse the store of selling items that are far beyond their reach, Xue Qiang, vice-general manager of the store, insists there is a niche market in the city and they are going to find it.
(CRI November 1, 2006)