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Candypants (at the W Hotel, Soho)
Candypants is the ultimate social and lifestyle brand, showing the world its outrageous, award-winning parties, alongside an up and coming fabulous fashion line designed for the modern party girl.
I have not had the opportunity to attend one of the parties abroad yet however I had the great opportunity to interview the founder of Candypants, Ray Chan, during one of his parties that he threw in London in March 2018.
His story is incredible and it is really inspiring to hear someone who has used their resources, no matter how humble the background, to create something that is truly lasting and innovative. While still a student in Leeds, Ray’s inherent business experience (taken from working at his parent’s Chinese restaurant as a young boy) and infectious charisma allowed Ray’s University and College parties to quickly become the go-to for the city’s party-loving crowd. In an industry better known for dingy bars and pretentious clubs, Ray found a gap in the market – his refreshing parties were a breath of fresh air: fashionable, unpretentious, easy-going and fun.
This skyrocket success allowed Ray to take his parties to the coolest locations across the globe as you can see. His ethos is to be different and, most importantly, keep things fun dstinguishes him. He’s a firm believer that smiling and laughing wins over pouting and posing, regardless of status or celebrity. It is hard to not want to experience one of them!
If you want to experience a party awarded the 2016 Time Out Best Brunch and 2017 Fact Magazine Best Brunch then this is something not to miss!
Candypants has been throwing its infamous parties for over 10 years, with once-in-a-lifetime experiences across the UK, Marbella, Dubai, Ibiza and Abu Dhabi. They now hold an amazing 250 events per year and these all include wild pool parties, all-day brunches, nightclub takeovers and innovative pop-ups, each drawing in an A-list crowd including the likes of Justin Bieber, Flo Rida and Leona Lewis (just naming a few!).
So why should I attend Candypants?
Off the back of a successful party business, Candypants launched an online fashion brand in July 2017, channeling its unique party attitude into clothing and accessories at candypants.com. Sassy and confident, each style embodies the fearless spirit of the Candypants girl. Think killer party dresses, playsuits and cords, alongside swim and beachwear, darling lingerie and jewelry. There are also party survival kits and cult essentials, as well as trend-led loungewear for morning-after chic.
March 2018 saw the launch of Candypants SS18 holiday designed collection, with standout swim and beachwear, daytime separates and body jewelry for a party-ready summer ahead. Already spotted on celebrities like Love Island’s Kady McDermott, swimwear pieces are available within a price range of £28-48. One this has circulated I will definitely update this information to the details of all of the collection.
So, who actually attends Candypants?
The Candypants girl is typically aged 21-32. Strong and independent, she wants to look her best for every occasion, but never takes herself too seriously. Candypants fashion gives her the freedom to express herself in a unique and confident way: trend-led and relevant, but unlike anything else on the high street; just like the Candypants parties themselves. But of course it isn’t just a female-led scene, the Candypants guy is also typically around the same age range, independent , focused and suave – but also doesn’t mind letting go now and again.
A sit down with Ray Chan
One lovely Sunday afternoon I sat down with Ray at the W Hotel in London to really get a sense of what makes him him, and how Candypants has all come about.
Ray explained to me how he had been growing Candypants for almost a decade. He enjoys bringing people together and learned from a young age the mistakes that others were making in the entertainment and party industry. He chose his venues (currently and in the early candpants days) firstly on the basis of the direction that Candypants was going in. It started within the nightclub scene, and then after the firs 2 years it broke into venues abroad such as their Marbella Candypants – and this opened up a completely new kind of party scene for them.
A day party in the sun, which people in the UK would love and run to due to the impending lack of sun in the UK. There was a gap in the day party industry in Marbella at that time, and it was just about to grow. People from the UK love this concept and that is reflected within other top holiday destinations within Spain such as Ibiza.
And I completely understood him as I personally prefer the idea of being in the sun and being on a beach or on a boat and enjoying yourselves during the day (especially for a non-drinker like me) as opposed to waiting until energy levels are low during night parties and depending on alcohol to fuel your energy levels throughout the night and destroy your plans for the next day.
Ray explained how he always prefers quality of fun over quantity when it comes to his parties. In the London Candypants in March 2018 there were little over 100 people in the guestlist but he would rather a few to have an amazing time instead of focusing on the actual outturn or statistics of the attendees.
It was amazing to hear that ever since then, venues started calling or enquiring for Candypants, and it has never ceased since then! They get venues calling once a month or even weekly and they are constantly growing all over the world with international venues enquiring constantly (and this has been the constant case for the last 3 years). Ray is currently in contact with the W in Hong Kong – and thats quite personal to him as it is his heritage – and thats an amazing story to bring to the brand.
Now with possible plans to expand Candypants out of the party scene, as they are coming up to their 10 year run, their thoughts on how to push the parties are being considered. They had been approached in Novemeber 2017 to do a party in the F1 Abu Dhabi grand Prix and Canypants was selected (which made him realise how organically Candypants has grown around the international hubs).
Canypants is split into 3 sections:
The Uk, which is their backbone – the starting point. The seasonal events like Marbella and Dubai (even though they are all yaar roun) but the F1 Grand Prix event opened a compleetly new section for Canypants: sporting/concert afterparty/festival afterparties. And by the sounds of it it seems like they want Candypants back in 2018! (which is not a surprise to me)
New directions are always exciting no matter what kind of brand/business you run. But especially difficult for the party/events scene as people need to be constantly kept excited on their toes and also intrigued as to why they want to attend that specific event.
I could really relate to Ray even more with the typical controversial debate between the ideal ‘going to university, getting a degree and getting a 9 to 5 after’ path. Literally the story of my life. The traditional saying of. “When are you going to get a proper job?”
A proper Job?
Ray struggled between his traditional family perspective and background as opposed to his innovative thinking and way of lifestyle, which annoyed Ray at times, but he used that as his incentive and fuel to really propel himself and make a success out of himself. With the motive of “one day I’m going to prove then wrong” and he was right. But Ray constantly realised he needed to have presence in Hong Kong – going back to his value of his roots which I also really relate to. And I am super excited and will keep an open ear for that.
One of the many things that I learned from speaking to Ray Chan – the more you doubt or annoy people, the more incentive they have to prove you wrong!
With parties in America and Asia next on the horizon, Ray Chan continues his mission to unite the world’s most glamorous, fun-loving people through unforgettable party experiences and fabulous fashion in 2018 and beyond. I am definitely excited to see what is next this Summer’18 and beyond!
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