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Giorgio Armani store for Shanghai

April 14, 2004
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Giorgio Armani is enjoying some Eastern charm as he makes his first ever trip to China. The designer made a stop-off in Beijing's Forbidden City before opening a new store in Shanghai.

The 69-year-old, who was accompanied by Hollywood actress Mira Sorvino on the visit, admitted the trip has been a long time coming. "The culture and customs of Asia have always been an inspiration to me," said the silver-haired Italian. "This is a much overdue trip to one of the world's most remarkable countries."

Giorgio staged an appropriately spectacular launch for his new outlet with a fashion show and party on the banks of the Huangpu river. The new boutique, which is Armani's third in the country - there are already outlets in Hong Kong and the Chinese capital - is located in the city's historic Bund area.

And it seems Giorgio intends to make his mark on the Chinese fashion scene, with plans to open more shops across the country. "We would expect to have a network of between 20 and 30 freestanding stores throughout China's most important cities by 2008," he revealed.

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Admitting he had never been to China before, the 69-year-old Italian designer described his trip as "much overdue"
Giorgio soaks up the sights of Beijing's legendary Forbidden City before heading east to open his latest store on the mainland, in Shanghai. Next week he will be in Hong Kong, presenting a catwalk show of his designs

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