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Who designed one of Bangkok's first industrial-style cafe?

Bangkok’s growing fashion and lifestyle industry has had more than some help from Bhanu Inkawat, the founder and creative director of Greyhound, one of Thailand’s most celebrated local design brands. 

Greyhound started out in 1980 as a menswear label known for its minimalist street style, and has since expanded to include womenswear, accessories, the sub-label Playhound, and a string of cafes. 

How did your advertising experience influence you as the creative director for Greyhound?
I was lucky to grow up in a Leo Burnett culture, which is all about creativity and doing things that haven’t been done before. Its philosophy is: “When you reach for the stars, you may not quite get one, but you won’t come up with a handful of mud either.” This is something I live by every day. It helps me when I work on Greyhound.

The Greyhound Cafe was one of the first in Bangkok to adopt an industrial style. Tell us more about that.
We were there at the right time and place. When we launched in 1998, there weren’t many modern cafes around. You can say that we were the first fashion cafe in Bangkok. [Industrial chic] is a basic style, which is why it remains relevant today, but how do you make it your own? Our approach is about little twists, whether they’re in the statements on the wall the uniforms, or the plates we use. We hope to open a restaurant here at the beginning of next year. Singapore is a small but sophisticated market, and a gateway to South-east Asia.

What have you learnt from designing for both fashion and food?
With fashion, people ask: “What’s new?” With food, they insist on sameness.

You’ve been in advertising, fashion, and the food and beverage industry. What’s your philosophy?
If you create something good, the business and money will follow. Quality is what makes you stand out and what you should live on. Part of our success is due to people appreciating the effort we put into details – the quality, the consistency, the style.

How would you like Greyhound to evolve?
I want the team to understand the core value of the brand and keep improving on it. There’s a saying – the old generation is the root of the brand, while the new generation is the fire that lights it up, and takes it to another level. 

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