HOME AND AWAY
Hands up who wishes they had created Miss Kitty? The little fluffy cat has to be one of the most franchised images ever and the money-spinning moggy has now popped up at The Shangri-La Group’s Hotel Jen Puteri Harbour at Johor in southern Malaysia. There are a dozen themed guestrooms “to suit moods and preferences”, from the nautical-accented Sailor Hello Kitty to the Pink Series “for a delightful rosy getaway”. It’s easy to scoff but there’s no denying the enduring appeal of the cartoon figure, created by the Sanrio corporation in Japan in 1974 as “an anthropomorphic white Japanese Bobtail cat-inspired character with a red bow”. There are Hello Kitty parks and cafes in Southeast Asia although the experiment has failed in Australia, with a cafe in Adelaide and a diner in Sydney’s Chatswood closing their pretty pink doors. But the hotel experiment has worked, with Hello Kitty “dream room” accommodation also at Keio Plaza Hotel in Tokyo. At Johor, there’s Sanrio Hello Kitty Town and Hello Kitty Red Bow Cafe next to Hotel Jen Puteri Harbour. Sanrio must be meowing merrily all the way to the bank. More: hoteljen.com.