In Straat Smart, we talk to well-travelled individuals and see the world through their eyes. This month we speak to Sabrina Li, representative of Staple SEA/Taiwan, whose involvement with the brand means the love for NYC is a staple.
By Kim Hana
As a representative of Staple SEA/Taiwan, Sabrina Li’s time is split between home, which is Singapore, and her creative home, NYC. In recent months, Sabrina has overseen the Staple store going from Pop-Up to permanent through the launch of the Reed Space SG in November.
Which are some of your favorite places in the world?
I like Tokyo for its quirky vibrancy. I love California, especially Santa Monica, it’s a really cute town by the sea and also San Francisco for its innovativeness. Last but not least, NYC for its amazing diversity and ever evolving culture.
where are some of your favorite places to go when you’re in NYC?
I really like Blue Bottle Coffee* in Tribeca, it has a downtown, chill vibe and for coffee addicts like me, it’s the one place you can just sit, appreciate and watch your crafted coffee drip.
Highline Park in Summer and Fall is amazing too. You can walk through the city and look at graffiti works and it is also in the really quaint Meatpacking District area.
Apart from the renowned
establishments, there are always surprises in the city. I once visited a speakeasy where patrons had to enter through a building with no obvious sign and then through a pizza kitchen doorway which led to a really posh but cozy bar. The music and crowd was amazing.
I like SoHo downtown as well as the Lower East Side where Reed Space NYC is located. I also make it a point to visit Madewell and J.Crew stores.
What are some of the best accommodations you’ve put up at?
Since I travel alone quite often for work and for long periods of time, I usually get an apartment from airbnb. I tend to choose apartments that belong to creative types so it really feels like home away from home. My hotel of choice would be The Standard in the Meatpacking District. The service is really good and I love the vibe of the place.
What are some of your travel essentials?
Floss, Burt’s Bees chapstick, Macbook Air, sneakers, dance gear, vitamin C, mints, my iPhone.
Name three places in Singapore you love to hang out at.
I like the Art Science Museum at the Marina Bay Sands, they have really good design/art centric exhibitions. I also do like a simple cup of coffee with toast at Dong Po because it’s near my office and store. I hang at the Kinokuniya in Takashimaya when I miss Japan.
If you had to single out one place in the world – a country, a city, or even an establishment – that emanates positive vibes, where would that be?
Without a doubt, it has to be Reed Space NYC. It is an authentic platform for artists, designers and brands to showcase themselves to the world. It is always about people and the people behind Reed Space and Staple get it.
Now that the positive social contagion has arrived in Singapore, how do you see the new space affecting the streetwear community here?
We see ourselves as an extension of what Reed Space NYC brings and we hope to be a spot that offers design and craft content from the States and different parts of the world. We were determined to bring consumers a new retail experience, hence the decision to integrate Reed Space SG with Hairloom, a local company that offers salon services. Streetwear is ever evolving and at this point, it is expanding, so we hope that Reed Space SG can facilitate this growing movement and culture in this part of the world.
*According to the Tribeca Citizen, Blue Bottle Coffee has left the market since September this year