Bonnae Gokson is a veritable powerhouse, a woman who has worked in the fields of fashion and hospitality in Hong Kong, forging an empire built on good taste and impeccable vision. Starting out at her sister’s famous Joyce fashion boutique, Gokson conceived of the chic Joyce Cafe’s in the 1990s before leaving to become Head of Image and Communications for Chanel in Asia. Fast forward a decade of putting on extraordinary fashion shows for the French fashion house everywhere from Shanghai to Singapore, she now sits at the helm of her own two businesses – Ms B’s Cakery, a patisserie and cafe brand aimed at providing simply the most delicious cakes in the business and Sevva, a super sleek bar and restaurant and one of Hong Kong’s hottest spots. With Gokson overseeing everything from menus to decor, dining to art, the penthouse restaurant and bar is the incarnation of her visionary and exacting approach to business and hospitality. Here, she answers Kotur’s questions.
What’s in your make-up bag?
Lots! From reviving serums and rejuvenating masks, to eye liner pencils and lipsticks, I have it all!
Do you have a beauty secret?
I only believe in holistic naturopathic therapies and have been practicing this for many years. I also do blood irradiation therapies twice a year with my German doctor.
What would be your desert island essentials?
My moisturizing creams with sun block, lipstick & water.
What do you wear on a fat day?
Morgane Le Fay dresses from New York or Josie Natori shifts.
How would your female friends describe your style?
Glamour Puss….”Only you can get away with it”…..
What’s the most treasured item in your wardrobe?
Hmmmm….there are quite a few. Probably my many fine pashmina & silk scarves I’ve collected over the years.
Is there anything in your wardrobe you should get rid of but can’t?
Plenty….Couture gowns, gorgeous accessories that they don’t make anymore….
What do you never leave home without?
Hot date night, what do you wear?
Depends with who…..something that shows off the figure, I suppose…
When home alone, what do you wear?
My stretch pants and comfy tees or my cotton kaftans.
What do you wear to bed?
Very fine cotton night gowns bought in Morocco.
You’re the fashion police for a day, what do you ban?
Items that are overly sloppy and bad taste stockings.
Have you ever worn anything you now regret?
Yes, and how!
How high is too high a heel?
6 inches up.
How old is too old for jeans?
It depends….If you can carry them off, I guess all the way to your 60s?!
If you could live in any other time for its fashion, when would you choose?
The Gatsby days or the 1980′s when clothes seemed to be more glam and sexy.
What is your most recent purchase?
Something beautiful for my home.
Can you judge a book by its cover?
What are your bad habits?
Sitting in my cosy bed, Downton Abbey style, enjoying my breakfast in bed and papers for hours….I know it’s bad for my back!
What’s your greatest extravagance?
Going into a fine jewellery store, within 5 mins of just walking by a window, picking up something très cher… Or my full length Russian Sable by Carlo Tivioli.
What are your guilty pleasures?
Cakes from Ms B’s Cakery.
What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given?
When life is being somewhat tough, we must understand that the universe just loves us too much to leave us alone. We are only being tested, it is only happening to give us an opportunity to grow more into our potential.
What’s your favorite smell?
Fresh sweet peas or fresh wild roses. Otherwise, scent(took out the s) wise, Grapefruit Cologne from Jo Malone.
What’s your idea of a great holiday?
Heading to either a culturally stimulating place with good company, good restaurants & interesting small finds OR getting lost in superb paradise where nature speaks louder than words, with beautiful lodging and good food…
What are you most proud of?
I’ve accomplished many things myself and never had to rely on anyone.
What are you least proud of?
My poor Mandarin….I should not have dropped Chinese for French when I was young.
What is your pure bliss?
To have hours of great massage whilst going through MAD MEN movie marathon.
Who or what would you like to be reincarnated as in your next life?
I wouldn’t know, but I hope I’ve earned enough good karma in this lifetime to be reincarnated into another blessed life.
What would you eat for your last supper?
Maybe a good soup if I had the appetite.
If you could meet someone from history who would it be?
Yes or no to a nip and a tuck?
Never obsessively, but if you have to do it, why not?
Do you have a favorite purse or bag?
My Paloma Picasso for Tiffany’s kidney shaped bag in Japanese black lacquer.
Do you have a favorite KOTUR bag?
The Pearce Special Edition Miniaudiere black bag.
On a scale of one-to-ten, how good looking are you?
I’d say a little just over average
How would you like to be remembered?
Someone’s who’s warm, with a lot to give & whenever you think about her, it just puts a little smile on your face…
By Fiona Kotur