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Hello Kitty celebrates 50th anniversary with 5 must-visit experiential zones

MANILA, Philippines — Hello Kitty has just turned 50 years old, and the celebration is taking place in grand style, as the icon serves as the International Frienship Ambassador for the Hello Kitty – Happy 50 @ Harbour City anniversary celebration.

For this special occasion, five must-visit experiential zones have been created at Hong Kong's Harbour City for the public to take part in and appreciate. Ongoing until February 25, these five zones showcase thematic installations, art exhibitions, pop-up stores, a charity exchange and an authograph event with Hello Kitty designer Yuko Yamaguchi on February 2 and 3.

These activities are geared towards charity, with all proceeds, after deducting minimal costs, will be generously donated to the Make-A-Wish Foundation.

50th anniversary parade performance

Hello Kitty’s 50th Anniversary "Parade Performance" Installation is ready at the Ocean Terminal Forecourt. The parade float is designed with the concept of an "Apple Wishing Garden," where Hello Kitty transforms into a Daruma of wishes, hoping to send different blessings to everyone.

The installation consists of three parade floats, led by Hello Kitty waving flags that bear the special logo of Harbour City.

The first float, the "Classic Apple-shaped Float," is driven by Hello Kitty's sister, Mimmy.

Following that is the main float, the "Apple Wishing Garden," featuring a 5-meter-tall red Hello Kitty Daruma and eight smaller Darumas wearing red apples on their heads.

The Darumas are adorned with things that Hello Kitty loves, representing different wishes, including happiness, wealth, love, family, fortune, study, career and health. On the back of the giant Daruma is a gashapon machine. Visitors can get charming and adorable Hello Kitty Daruma capsules by inserting Hello Kitty coins, consisting of a set of eight different designs.

The garden, meanwhile, is surrounded by a delightful variety of pink apple trees. Take a moment to relax at the Hello Kitty-shaped swing and the whimsical bow-shaped swing under the big apple tree. And for even more fun, Hello Kitty’s lovable friends, Joey and Rorry, will be there.

The third float features a grand archway inspired by Hello Kitty's Dream House, where Hello Kitty and Dear Daniel warmly welcome everyone in front of a small flower garden! Connecting the second and third floats is a love lock bridge. Starting February 1, visitors can purchase a Hello Kitty Love Lock and hang it on the bridge, marking a special moment with loved ones.

Lion Dance Garden

Visitors will find an adorable Hello Kitty stepping on a plum blossom pile, accompanied by a large lion dance head and four big drums behind her, inviting everyone to join in the drumming excitement. The lion dance flags proudly display auspicious blessings and serve as a vibrant backdrop for taking photos.

Harbour City, in collaboration with the Keung's Dragon & Lion Dance Team and the brand “Needless,” aims to promote the traditional Chinese lion dance culture. In the small flower garden beneath Hello Kitty, there is a display showcasing the history of lion dance, including lion head production, lion dance training, and the art of flag and drum performances.

Hello Kitty Lion Dance

Art exhibition and limited-edition merchandise

Renowned artists have come together to showcase the diverse and captivating charm of Hello Kitty through various art forms in the "Every Flower Tells A story" art exhibition curated by William Chan Design.

One highlight of the exhibition is the exclusive "Color Your Future" collection, a collaboration between William Chan Design and Bull & Stein. Bull & Stein, a German home decor brand, combines their iconic apple design with Hello Kitty's classic image to create a series of collectible Hello Kitty art sculptures. There are 10 sculptures, each limited to 20 pieces per color, which have been meticulously handcrafted by top European artisans using Swiss-patented pigments.

Hisahiro Fukazawa is another artist represented in the art exhibition, who is presenting a collection of Hello Kitty-inspired exquisite 24 Karat Gold Acrylic Paintings. The series consists of 10 artworks, showcasing the essence of Japanese classical flower and bird paintings with intricate craftsmanship and modern design, complementing the story of Hello Kitty and flowers.

Also, Wondrous Group Limited unveils the Hello Kitty Jewellery Collection here, and it features silver, semi-precious stones and 18K gold pieces. Incorporating the art of enamel painting and materials such as gemstones, mother-of-pearls and diamonds, the collection exudes the glamorous charm of Hello Kitty's classic image.

The exhibition likewise showcases a range of limited-edition Hello Kitty merchandise, including blankets, acrylic stands, phone holders and vases. All the artworks and merchandise are available for sale from January 25 at the Gallery by the Harbour.

Candies and cookies pop-up store

Visitors would be happy to find the Hello Kitty x Kee Wah Bakery Candies & Cookies Pop-up Store here. The entire store is filled with pink and adorable decor.

There are three "Hello Kitty – Happy 50" Candies & Cookies gift boxes available. These include a cardboard tote bag, an iconic "coin purse" style and a Hello Kitty-shaped tin box. The packaging is adorned with Hello Kitty and her beloved items, showcasing a delightful and cute design.

Customers can choose to purchase pre-made gift boxes or customize their own. By selecting the gift box style, they can then visit the candy bar to choose the designated quantity of their favorite candies and cookies, including special Hello Kitty-themed ones.

50th Anniversary pop-up store

Sanrio has opened a Hello Kitty 50th Anniversary Pop-up Store at Harbour City. Highlights include a Hello Kitty 50th Anniversary photo spot and the global exclusive launch of a variety of exquisite products.

The pop-up store, themed around exploring the future, features a stunning "Friend the Future" – designed photo area where fans can take pictures with Hello Kitty. In addition, there is a Hello Kitty 50th anniversary-themed Snapio photo machine available.

A series of limited-edition items has also been launched to celebrate Hello Kitty's 50th anniversary! This includes a Hong Kong-exclusive limited edition set of Hello Kitty 50th Anniversary commemorative pins, with only 100 sets available. The complete set features Hello Kitty designs from 1974 to 2023, along with two hidden editions. Additionally, there are 19 classic Hello Kitty 50th Anniversary plush figurines and one bow figurine, all exclusive to the event.

Hello Kitty art exhibition

More exclusive items

Apart from the five stops mentioned above, the golden anniversary celebration also launched 50 Iconic Hello Kitty Past Styles' Tote Bags. Each bag represents a different design spanning from 1974 to the present.

Aside from the tote bags, the Hello Kitty Glittery Charm, a semi-transparent pink charm filled with adorable sparkling flakes, will also be available. Customers can receive one designated tote bag and one charm redemption voucher for free by making a same-day single electronic spending of HK$500 or more at participating merchants during the event period. With the voucher, customers can donate HK$25 to redeem one charm at the Hello Kitty x Kee Wah Bakery Candies & Cookies Pop-up Store. These will be in limited quantities and will be available only while stocks last.

The previously launched Hello Kitty 50th Anniversary Chinese Zodiac Commemorative Golden Coin Wooden Box Set sold out quickly, thanks to the tremendous love and support from fans. The good news is that, starting on January 25, the individual set of the golden coin (HK$50) will be available for public sale. The packaging design showcases Hello Kitty as a wish-granting Daruma, with her iconic red apple atop her head and holding a Golden Coin. Those who are interested can purchase this special item at the Hello Kitty 50th Anniversary "Parade Performance" themed installation located at the Ocean Terminal Forecourt. This release is likewise limited.

To be able to enjoy many of these exclusive offerings, Harbour City has launched two celebration experience packages for Hello Kitty’s 50th anniversary, which fans can book through Klook. In addition to getting precious limited-edition anniversary items, customers also get the rare opportunity to participate in an autograph event with Hello Kitty designer Yuko Yamaguchi. During the event, Yamaguchi will personally draw Hello Kitty on-site.

Celebration Experience Package A (HK$600) includes a set of eight Hello Kitty Daruma Wishing Capsules, one Hello Kitty Chinese Zodiac Commemorative Golden Coin, one Hello Kitty Past Styles’ Tote Bag and one Hello Kitty Glittery Charm.

Celebration Experience Package B (HK$900) includes admission to the exclusive Hello Kitty designer Yuko Yamaguchi’s autograph event at Harbour City on February 3, includes a set of eight Hello Kitty Daruma Wishing Capsules, on Hello Kitty Chinese Zodiac Commemorative Golden Coin, one Hello Kitty Past Styles’ Tote Bag and one Hello Kitty Glittery Charm.

RELATED: Tiger Sugar opens world’s first café in Philippines, collaborates with Hello Kitty

Credit belongs to : www.philstar.com

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