New name and more for Ku De Ta
IN A coup for the original Bali owners of the Ku De Ta trademark, the swish club atop Marina Bay Sands Hotel will no longer be able to refer to itself using the trademarked name.
It is now called Ce La Vi, inspired by the French phrase "c'est la vie" or this is life.
The rebranding comes after a five-year lawsuit over the unlawful use of the Ku De Ta trademark in Singapore, brought on by the owners of the original Ku De Ta concept, a beachfront club in Bali.
L Capital Asia - the investment arm of French luxury group LVHM Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton, which indirectly holds a controlling stake in Ku De Ta SG - yesterday announced its decision to rebrand the Singapore venue, following last month's Court of Appeals ruling against it.
The group also noted that it had some documentation to sort out before proceeding to rebrand Ku De Ta in Bangkok, which it also controls.
L Capital also announced its intention to take Ce La Vi to global lifestyle capitals around the world.
First on that agenda is a rooftop Ce La Vi location in Hong Kong, slated to open next month. Occupying the top three floors of the California Tower, the venue will be located in the heart of Hong Kong's iconic Lan Kwai Fong party district.
New venues boasting panoramic views in Dubai and Taipei are also expected over the next five years.
Ravi Thakran, managing partner and chairman of L Capital Asia, told Life! that Ce La Vi will take the business from an "Asian lifestyle titan to a global luxury dining and lifestyle titan".
Asked about the future of the club in Singapore, he said: "When we took over the Singapore business last year, it was 60 per cent of where we wanted it to be, but come the end of the summer, Ce La Vi in Singapore will be 100 per cent of our vision realised."
He declined to disclose how much the group is spending on the rebranding efforts.
The Singapore club, which generated $43 million in revenue last year, will also undergo refurbishment over the next few months.
Spearheaded by award-winning Hong Kong-based interior design firm AB Concept, guests can expect the new look to pay homage to South-east Asian culture. Among the purported influences are 16th-century Javanese poetry and prints, 18th-century Balinese woodwork and Angkor Wat.
The club will be operational during the duration of the refurbishment works. The VIP guest list of about 300 members will not be affected by the transition.
The rebranding also boasts an addition to Ce La Vi's resident DJ line-up, given that music is an important part of the entertainment brand.
DJ Spinbad from New York - the most radio-syndicated DJ in the world - has joined the Singapore team permanently. And next Wednesday, American rapper Lil' Jon will kick things off at the new club when he plays guest DJ as part of the Grey Goose V Series party.
Mr Thakran said of the new brand: "We aim to create drama and inspire moments from cuisine, mixology, music, culture and spectacular surroundings. We like to say we are the love child of South-east Asian creativity and international hedonism."