Sarah Fung, founder of pre-loved luxury retail Hula
Hong Kong is a place full of talented and scheming people. Every week in 27 questions, we connect with the city's notable personalities, discovering their quirks, dislikes, crucial moments in life, hopes and dreams - all in about the same amount of time it takes to make a date. you quick two minutes. Somewhere along […]

Hong Kong is a place full of talented and scheming people. Every week in 27 questions, we connect with the city's notable personalities, discovering their quirks, dislikes, crucial moments in life, hopes and dreams - all in about the same amount of time it takes to make a date. you quick two minutes.

Somewhere along the way, the humble act of treasure hunting in all manner of thrift stores took its big break from the luxury world. In fashion-obsessed Hong Kong, second-hand shopping made a bigger name once there were some pretty sophisticated retailers in the area that were solely dedicated to pre-loved pieces - especially with the growing option of doing it online. Closer to home is Hula, a pre-loved luxury retail platform, stacked with designer womenswear taken from the sartorial treasure chests of the city's most affluent townspeople..

The fashion industry is known for the amount of textile waste it produces each year, precisely 10% of global carbon emissions. It's a number no one knows better than Sarah Fung, who spent a decade in luxury retail witnessing firsthand the impact of the endless pursuit of new trends and cycles in the fashion space. retail. There is an ongoing parent line of new clothes, most of which are instantly thrown new or at a discount as soon as new collections hit the runway. Realizing that there was a wardrobe of opportunity for these pieces in lieu of the sales bin, the Central Saint Martins graduate swept these designer pieces and, with pieces still price tagged coming from the glowing closets of friends, curated her first collection for the pre-loved luxury retailer, Hula.

Hula's retail warehouse in Wong Chuk Hang.

In a nutshell, Hula is where pre-loved luxury finds meet affordability: most of the collection is offered at an attractive 95% off retail price. However, Hula is doing its part in promoting a circular fashion economy (hence a `` hula hoop ''), a practice that reuses and extends the life of a single item by circulating it between users and new buyers. It works extremely well with pieces from the luxury landscape, as many are from respected, high-quality global brands and are made to last. Along with the great prices and well-verified authenticity - achieved by AI Entrupy technology or with items purchased from a list of trusted guest sellers - every now and then a rare vintage piece of jewelry comes under scrutiny. It's especially exciting to find out with archival pieces making a comeback once again in the trend charts.

From the online marketplace it started from, Hula has grown into a retail warehouse in Wong Chuk Hang in 2019, where the spacious 3,500 square foot. the space is filled with countless mint designer pieces from over 750+ brands. More recently, the consignment retail concept also launched its first pop-up in the heart of bustling Central, with a beautifully appointed boutique setup displaying the vast selection of new styles (still with price tags attached. ) and coveted vintage pieces. Always curious to learn more, we took a closer look at the founder of Hula with our quick interview, covering topics ranging from her first job to her favorite words of wisdom; and even delved into the gems of Fung's own closet a bit.

Sarah Fung, founder of Hula.

Last name: Sarah Fung

Age: 46

District: Wong Chuk Hang (work) and Sai Ying Pun (home).

Occupation: Founder and CEO of Hula.

1. What is your life motto?

"Glass half full and not half empty."

2. What is your model?

Sarah Blakely, founder and CEO of the “Spanx” lingerie brand. She's a self-made billionaire who didn't go to college and used to sell fax machines for a living before - it shows you anything is possible.

3. What is your favorite drink?

If I'm feeling alright, hot water with lemon, otherwise it is Champagne.

4. Are you a morning or a night owl?

If I've got enough sleep, I like to get up early and be productive, but I can also stay up all night to work.

5. What was your first job?

Working in my mom's beauty salon when I was 14 (it was totally child labor!).

6. If you could only eat one thing for the rest of your life, what would it be?

Rice… but can I at least eat it with something else ?!

7. What are the top destinations on your wishlist?

A gastronomic holiday in Italy, a safari in Africa or glamping in Oman.

8. What is your greatest guilty pleasure?

Alcohol, cheese and sugar: bad, bad and very bad!

9. What does your typical Sunday look like?

Sunday is usually my 'stay-at-home day' - I like to wake up late, eat brunch with my husband on our balcony, exercise, chat with my sister in the UK, eat a light dinner, then watch a few episodes of our favorite shows.

10. What motivates you in your work?

My wonderful staff and clients.

3,500 square feet of pre-loved designer pieces in the Wong Chuk Hang Hula space.

11. What time in your life would you most like to relive?

Some of the best parties I had when I was in my twenties.

12. Which phone app do you think more people should know about?

TakeTaxi app - it translates all the street names in Hong Kong into Chinese. But my all-time favorite app that a lot of people probably already have is Shazam. It's so smart!

13. What's your unique party tip?

I can lean back to touch my toes with the top of my head (maybe I should say I was doing it like it's been a while).

14. If you had to describe Hong Kong in one word, what would it be?

Energetic.

15. What is the best meal you have ever had in Hong Kong?

Bo Innovation - that was such an interesting twist in Cantonese cuisine.

16. If you could ban someone from Hong Kong forever, who would it be?

Carrie Lam ...

The pre-loved luxury consignment retail store stocks over 700 designer brands.

17. What is your favorite scent around the world?

Fresh cut grass.

18. How many pairs of shoes do you currently own? Which one do you wear most often?

I own 40 or so pairs of shoes, I wear my black Vince leather slides most often right now as I had foot surgery earlier this year and they happen to be the most comfortable.

19. What was the best gift you have ever received?

My vintage engagement ring from the 1890s.

20.What's breaking your relationship?

If the person doesn't make me laugh.

21. What is your favorite tradition?

Christmas Day should start with a mimosa in the morning and end with a Baileys after dinner.

22. Who is your spirit animal?

A tiger.

The Central pop-up store which ran from October 21 to November 9, 2020.

23. Who is the best teacher you have ever had, what important lesson did they teach you?

My mother; she said a lot of things that maybe wouldn't have been so good… but one thing she said to me that really resonated was: "[you need to] live your life as fully as possible. Travel, study, never rely on a man to bring you happiness, and don't settle in too quickly. Seems like normal advice, but from a Chinese mother (who didn't do any of that), these were words of total and absolute freedom, and I will always remember them.

24. What is your favorite childhood memory?

Sing with my sister or my mother.

25. Do you have any favorite tattoos or special birthmarks? What is that?

I love the little mole on the tip of my nose and a little hole near my tear duct that people often mistake for an eyelash (which I don't really like)… yeah, weird.

26. When was the last time you drove a car?

14 years ago in London… and that was the last time I had run over one too.

27. What is your biggest regret in life?

That I didn't start Hula sooner!


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