Buckets of Goodwill
It seems the downpour is over. No, not those late-summer rainstorms, but the ice bucket challenge, which drenched our Facebook feeds right through August and September. Friends and workmates were being called out left, right and centre. And don’t forget the celebs: Leonardo Dicaprio and a native American clan, Jimmy Fallon and his band. Then came a spate of challenges gone wrong, such as the potty-mouthed toddler. That one was actually funny (the first time).
Whatever you thought about the challenge, you can’t deny its phenomenal success; at last count, more than US$100 million had been raised for the battle against the dreadful ailment ALS, or Lou Gehrig’s disease. And by combining crowd funding and video selfies, the campaign has transformed the way charities will operate forever. In this issue, Madeleine Ross dives into the ice-bucket craze and gets ninjitsu master Albert Wong to do a hair-raising re-enactment of his chilly moment at the hands of friend Caroline Roberts (p.348).
In Features, this month’s cover star, chic hotelier Sonia Cheng, tells Melissa Twigg of her grand expansion plans for Rosewood Hotels & Resorts (p.256). Cheng recently launched Rosewood London, which is becoming one of the hottest spots in the capital; next up is Rosewood Beijing, which opens this month, and a major refurbishment of the Hôtel de Crillon in Paris will be unveiled in the new year.
The one-on-ones with heavy hitters continue offshore. We speak exclusively with Oscarwinner Morgan Freeman, who will tee off at the Mission Hills World Celebrity Pro-am at Mission Hills Haikou later this month. The star opens up about golf, Nelson Mandela, his blues bar and even his gold earrings (p.122). We also sit down with a star from the other side of the camera, Titanic director James Cameron, to discuss his history-making solo journey to the bottom of the deepest ocean (p.242).
Emilie Yabut-razon catches up with basketball legend Lebron James, who talks hoop-shooting and timekeeping in his new role as ambassador for Audemars Piguet (p.238). Then we kick the ball into orbit in an interview with Richard Branson, who is due to launch the inaugural Virgin Galactic space flight in the next few months (p.284).
Elsewhere, the How To feature that pleased so many of you last year makes a return. Our elite panel of good-humoured experts, which includes Ronald Abram, Michele Li, Michelle Cheng, Jamie Lee, Christina Man and Ivan Ting, will coach you through all manner of activities, from fighting the flab to baking a mind-blowing birthday cake, and to picking the perfect diamond (p.264). But we haven’t included a how-to for the ice bucket challenge—we think you’ve probably mastered that by now.