Arc’teryx Brings Gorpcore To Shangri-la’s Snow-capped Mountains

What Happened: On February 28, Canadian outdoor apparel brand Arc’teryx held a fashion show atop a 9,842-feet tall mountain near Xiaojiezi Village, Shangri-La, Yunnan Province. Decked out in the brand’s signature bright-colored climbing gear and technical outdoor styles, the models also wore local Tibetan prints and beading. 

Arc’teryx held a fashion show at Songtsam Linka Shangri-La, located in a Tibetan village. Photo: Xiaohongshu @Arc’teryx始祖鸟

The event took place at luxury boutique hotel Songtsam Linka Shangri-La, a Tibetan-style hotel located next to the renowned Songzanlin Monastery Temple, the province’s largest Tibetan Buddhist edifice. Parent company Songtsam owns a series of hotels across Yunnan and Tibet, including Songtsam Lodge Lijiang and Songtsam Linka Retreat Lhasa. The hotels focus on providing unique local experiences, such as hiking the lush nearby forests and wellness offerings like traditional Tibetan meditation and spa therapies. 

The Jing Take: Owned by China-based Anta Group, outdoor apparel brand Arc’teryx has made major strides in China over recent years as the nation continues to see strong demand for outdoor wear and athleisure. 

Since launching its “China first” strategy in 2020, Arc’teryx has been making its presence known across the country. In November 2022, the retailer collaborated with local coffee roaster Peet’s Coffee to celebrate the opening of a new store at China’s Beidahu Ski Resort. Covered in a gold facade, the retail space features a rustic wooden interior, along with a glacier-inspired sculpture, and was designed to be a “spiritual” destination for China’s skiers.

Arc’teryx’s store at the Beidahu Ski Resort in Jilin, China. Photo: Arc’teryx

The collaboration between Arc’teryx and Yunnan’s Songtsam Linka Shangri-La, which connects colorful Tibetan and Yunnanese customs with winter sports and wellness, makes sense as a next step. In a survey of six countries, McKinsey & Co. found that Chinese consumers reported the highest level of spending on wellness-related online products and services during much of the pandemic. And as the wellness market matures, other brands moving into this space include Dior, which opened its first Dior Luxury Beauty Retreat in Shanghai last year. 

Boasting picturesque scenery, fresh mountain air and plenty of rural greenery, Yunnan is emerging as one the most popular domestic tourism destinations, thanks to government initiatives and TV shows like Meet Yourself. And now, merging luxury wellness and hospitality with outdoor apparel and activities along the province’s quaint mountaintops appears to be the next logical move for brands like Arc’teryx.

The Jing Take reports on a piece of the leading news and presents our editorial team’s analysis of the key implications for the luxury industry. In the recurring column, we analyze everything from product drops and mergers to heated debate sprouting on Chinese social media.


Fashion, Market Analysis