Growing up on fantasies of Willy Wonka’s Chocolate factory, one tends to leave these dreams behind as relics of childhoods past. But stepping into Magnum Cafe Brunei, one is taken aback by the familiar feelings of excitement that chocolate still induces in us even as adults. Keeping this in mind, Royal Brunei Catering hosted their very first Magnum Lifestyle Meet-up on the 23rd of July with the uplifting theme of “Empowering Women” featuring a panel of invited guests who are seasoned and accomplished players in their respective fields.
Sharing their expertise on the panel were Patricia Li from Laneige Brunei heading the beauty front, Shy Nokman (also known as “The Little Lifter”) running through topics on health and fitness and Shafiza Aisyah, the Creative Director and co-founder of Pret-A-Porter Malaysia departing her knowledge on fashion and running a multi-label fashion enterprise. Keeping with the theme, the panelists shared their ideas and challenged women everywhere from all walks of life to love and care for themselves.
Shy Nokman, founder of online weight loss program “Sparkle With Shy” was passionate in her support of body positivity and feeling comfortable in one’s skin. Not only does she promote it to her clients, she also lives by the importance of enjoying and treating one’s self from time to time no matter the diet or workout regimen.
Patricia Li from Laneige Brunei, on the other hand, is a true advocate of self, skin and soul-maintenance. Talking about the significance of paying attention to one’s skin, regardless of gender, she also lists lip balm, moisturizer and face mist as part of her purse essentials on a day-to-day basis. But most of all, she mentions that “confidence and happiness shines from within” which is vital for all women anywhere and everywhere.
Shafiza Aishah, on the other hand, mentions that maintaining a balanced life while juggling between duties of being a mother, daughter and wife in addition to other day jobs, while challenging at times, should be a priority. However, among everything else, she also highlights that it is part of a woman’s rights to be able to take the time out to pamper one’s self, without feeling guilty in order to establish a positive mindset.
Throughout the event, looking around one gets the feeling of being in a sweet tooth’s version of Disneyland, with lamps disguised as chocolate drops and the smooth, rich golden of the cafe’s accent paneling. Elegant desserts, dainty hors d’oeuvres and gourmet chocolate-drizzled fries line the island bar in an almost dutiful manner.
The atmosphere is one of jovial cheer as participants and esteemed guests from the embassies of Pakistan, Laos, Vietnam and Thailand mingled with one another. Clad in white as part of the sophisticated dress code, crisp white button-ups, smart polo shirts and refined flowing ensembles made up the garb of the stylish crowd present that day.
After a mind-opening round of discussion among the panelists, a beauty contest sponsored by Laneige was held, in which contestants stood to win a chance of Laneige products worth up to BND350. The participants were required to create makeovers on their partners using only the Laneige makeup and skin-priming products available on the spot and nothing else.
On the other side of the restaurant, guests were invited to an equally exciting treat as Magnum, for the first time ever, opened its ice-cream bar to the public for a chance to “Make Your Own Magnum”.
With their famed assortment of exotic toppings such as chilli flakes, sea salt, dried mangoes and rose petals, guests fulfilled their fantasies of creating their own Magnums by dipping the rich, cream popsicles in molten white, milk or dark chocolate and then sprinkling on their favourite toppings according to their hearts’ desires.
As the Lifestyle Meet-up came to a close with the presenting of prizes to the skilled finalists of the beauty contest, Ahmad Husaini bin Hassan, General Manager of Royal Brunei Catering, presented the crowd with a rousing closing statement. Built in less than one month on recyclable materials, and credited with being the fastest growing yet most affordable branch of its franchise, Magnum Brunei faces its fast approaching one-year anniversary on Bruneian ground with promising success.