In Hong Kong, souvenirs worth saving
One of the rarest items on auction is an intricately woven Chinese dragon robe owned by an Imperial Duke in the 1880s.
Next time you’re in Hong Kong, forget coming home with a mass-produced, fake designer handbag or ubiquitous Chinese teapot. There is a new, more authentic option in town.
Opened in late June in the Ap Lei Chau district, Gresham’s is the city’s first auction house to offer affordable Asian collectibles and antiques, allowing travellers to return home with one-of-a-kind historical pieces including furniture, ceramics, art, carpets, maps, watches and jewellery.
The next auction takes place on 31 August (viewing starts 29 August) and features rare carpets and textiles from China, Tibet, Central Asia and the Middle East, with items starting as low as 1,000 Hong Kong dollars. A few highlights of the 183-item collection are four beautiful Chinese silk skirts in pristine condition. The pale green skirt has black trim, embroidered with auspicious symbols such as peony, peach, pomegranate and butterflies.
The rarest items include an intricately woven Chinese dragon robe owned by an Imperial Duke in the 1880s, a blood-red Turkmen carpet from the late 19th Century, and a Sinkiang (a Chinese province) carpet with an image of a tiger, dating back to 1920.
The auction house can ship items to the buyer’s home, with the cost based on the item’s weight.
Vicki Williams is the Hong Kong Localite for BBC Travel. She also writes sybariteunlimited.com