Shuttlecocks and wine corks
Everywhere he goes, badminton ace Peter Gade shops for vino
Be it shuttlecock or wine cork, Danish shuttler Peter Gade handles both with finesse. The 30-year-old badminton player, who is currently ranked seven in the world, collects wine from all over the world when he travels for competitions and leisure.
In the cellar in his house in Copenhagen sit 550 bottles of wine collected during the 120 days of travelling he does each year to cities in Europe and Asia.
Apart from wine, he never fails to bring something back for his 21/2-year-old daughter who always bugs him for toys wherever he goes.
Although Gade was unable to defend his title in the Aviva Open Singapore at the Singapore Indoor Stadium last week - having made it only to the semi-finals of the competition - and will not be bringing home a trophy this time around, his daughter will still have something to look forward to.
Which is the best city for shopping?
Rome. I was there for Christmas the last three years, and it's by far my favourite city.
It is beautiful, rich in history and the people have a very relaxed mindset. I like places where things are calm and there's a lot of nature.
And compared to the very fashionable Paris, Rome is much more casual.
It's a good place to shop for wine. There are shops everywhere and you can find some good wines at reasonable prices.
What do you always have to buy on shopping trips?
I don't really buy anything much for myself apart from wines, but I always try to buy stuff for my family.
I'll look for clothes or shoes for my wife, and my daughter will always ask for toys whenever I travel, but I've given her so many that I don't think she really cares much for them any more.
So where is a good place to shop in Copenhagen?
Generally, prices in Denmark are quite high.
I always go to Zornig in Gammel Kongevej in Frederiksberg. It's a two-storey men's store that sells designer brands like Replay, and it's the only store I ever go to.
There's also the shopping districts of Gronnegade and Ostergade, where you can find boutiques of Danish designers such as Birger Christensen - a fur designer - and female fashion house Munthe plus Simonsen, which happens to be Danish supermodel Helena Christensen's favourite.
Is there one thing that you always buy and collect on your travels?
I buy wine from all over the world when I travel. I now have about 550 bottles in my cellar at home.
My most expensive bottle is a Chateau Latour 1982, which I bought in Japan six months ago. It cost me S$1,500, and the price is always going up.
If I were to sell it now, I can probably make a small profit.
Where is the best place to buy wines?
My favourite places are Bordeaux and Burgundy in France, and Piedmont in Italy, all well-known wine regions.
But it is very hard to say which place is best for buying wines because prices are different everywhere.
A certain bottle might be very expensive in one country but cheap in another.
Sometimes, you can find small wine shops stocking some pretty good wine but, not knowing its true value or something, are selling it very cheap.
That's part of the fun, hunting down little treasures like that, and it's really very satisfying when you finally manage to find a special bottle of wine after looking for it all over the world.
To me, wine is like an investment because prices are always moving up and down, just like the stock market. Sometimes, I will try to sell some of those I own on the Internet or in wine auctions.
What was your strangest buy overseas?
When I was younger, I used to bargain in cities like Hong Kong and Kuala Lumpur, just for the fun of it.
Once, in Kuala Lumpur's Chinatown when I was 18 years old, I haggled with a seller for some imitation branded watches. I used to collect watches then.
I selected between 25 and 30 watches but the seller and I couldn't settle on a price so we tossed a coin to decide. Whoever won the toss would get his price.
I can't remember who won or how much it cost but, at that time, I did it for fun.
Now I don't like to bargain anymore. It's such a hassle. I prefer to shop in ease and relax.
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