Last week we were in Berlin to celebrate the re-release of of the iconic ASICS GEL-KAYANO 5, The silhouette first launched in 1999, the GEL-KAYANO 5 was the 5th iteration in the Kayano series and appeared six years after the first GEL-KAYANO model which was a worthy successor to the GT-Cool Xpress and X-Caliber GT.
Designer Toshikazu Kayano based his iconic design for the first GEL-KAYANO on the mighty stag beetle and the silhouette has been evolving ever since. From the samurai-inspired GEL-KAYANO 11 to the Gran Turismo-inspired 20th anniversary edition, the shoe has continued to drive innovation year after year.
Each GEL-KAYANO design was unlike anything that had come before it using ground-breaking ASICS technology to provide runners with speed, comfort and confidence.
With an introductory meal, photography activation and a Japanese-themed party in the heart of Berlin. Fashion and streetwear alumni flew in from around the world to be a part of this special moment, giving the iconic shoe the re-introduction, it deserves.
On arrival we were greeted by both ASICS and HighSnobiety representatives, the initial meal gave weary travellers the time to get to know one another, talk all that is ASICS and mull over what would be a very unique dining experience to come.
Hosted at Berlins Zenkichi Restaurant, you’ll wander through a lobby that looks like a bamboo forest, to immersive dining spaces composed of small, semi-private booths. Zenkichi’s perk is its all-embracing conceptual design where guests enjoy a seasonal Omakase menu, seated in alcoves. This menu is here to make it easier for you, the 8-course tasting menu will let you enjoy all the varieties the kitchen has to offer, just sit down, relax and await the plates being spread in front of you to enjoy.
The following day, we set out early to meet individuals that had been assigned our ‘Berlin Guides’ each with their own list of unique photography spots. In groups of no more than 10, we walked from location to location scouting spots that would prove ideal for both the GEL-KAYANO 5 and tell the best story of Berlin through visual communication. After our busy morning, all the groups met at ‘Cocolo Ramen’, a temple for Ramen worshipers where we were treated to authentic noodle soups whilst revelling in the creative outcomes from the morning shoots.
Later that evening, honouring the brand’s Japanese roots, ASICS brought various elements of Japanese culture together under one roof at Berlin’s infamous nightclub IPSE. Guests were treated to a selection of complimentary drinks, Golden Gai-style food stalls, and could battle it out on 90s arcade classics. The soundtrack for the evening was supplied by Soichi Terada, DJ ONONiiONIONIION, and the Highsnobiety Sound system.
Thanks to ASICS and HighSnobiety for having us on the trip and to celebrate another chapter in the Kayano legacy.