By  on July 2, 2008

BEIJING — Legation Quarter, a hyped luxury destination project here, flexed its fashion muscle last month by hosting Shanghai Tang's fall fashion show. But between sips of free-flowing Champagne, guests and industry insiders mused over the controversial restoration project and the validity of its business model.

"It's a risky area for us here in terms of traffic," said Raphael le Masne de Chermont, executive chairman of Shanghai Tang. The group is currently in negotiations with Legation Quarter over retail space. De Chermont admitted that price was also a factor, but maintained the rent was still a bargain compared with costs in Shanghai and Hong Kong.

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