I have been noticing the rack of Hellolulu Bags from Rustan's Gateway branch for the longest time. I didn't bother to check because it is surely expensive. Most of the bags I see are also in the form of backpacks. I don't often use backpacks these days, except when I had those rare overnight trips. 

In one random day of April, I was able to leave work early. The rare times the train ride was a breeze. I don't have any freelance work to attend. Time was on my side. I decided to walk around the mall for a while. I noticed the magic red flag at Rustan's, SALE. I checked out the items on sale and discovered that all Hellolulu bags were sold 20% off its original price. Looks like a tempting deal, but surprise or surprises... I went home with no paper bag on my hands. Although I have to admit, I was starting to like their bags. 

Weeks after, I decided I wanted my own Hellolulu. Unfortunately, Rustan's promotional sale was over. I checked out other boutiques offering Hellolulu and discovered Urbanize in Gateway Mall too. I was willing to purchase because the sales clerk told me that the bag was still on sale. Deal! But when the sales clerk verified with their main office, we discovered that it was back on its regular price. I went back to Rustan's even though I will be able to acquire for the same price. Rustan's was a better choice because of the opportunity to purchase via zero interest installment. True enough, the price of the bag qualified for the installment program. Added to this, Rustan's customer service is always way way way better. 

I purchased the tote version or the Nori Slim Brief. I admit, the bag is expensive... relative to my purchasing capacity and payslip :p When I checked its features and materials, I have to say that I got a good deal.

The best thing I love about the bag is the compartments. It has a huge back pocket that can store small documents to regular must haves like your coin purse, train card, to a thin pocket book. The front side of the bag provides another space for easy access of your other set of must haves. An added tool, (as seen on the 6th photo) the bag provides a safe and sturdy key holder.

My appreciation to the front and back compartments intensified because I have problems with bags designed with flaps and zippers. I hate the inconvenience of lifting the flap and pulling the zipper to access my things. The spacious front and back compartments made it for me. My important items are secured in the space with zipper, while I have external compartments that provides easier access for items I often need. 

When I examined the main internal part of the bag, I was surprised to see a safe compartment for a laptop. The bag can fit either my 11.5 inches MacBook Air or my Acer V5-132p laptop. I initially thought that the laptop might eat up the entire space of the bag. Surprisingly, the inside part of the of the bag can still accommodate. My foldable umbrella, portable mini electric fan, hygiene kit, and pocket book can still fit. Mini pockets are also provided inside for small and important items.

While the bag can accommodate a lot of things, my other concern was the weight. The bag itself is very lightweight and sturdy. Have you ever had the bag that already feels heavy even without your stuff inside yet? Hellolulu Bags are surprisingly lightweight and pardon the comparison, I love its material than the Herschel bags.

I was also able to road test the bag against stains. I accidentally left a pen mark and oil stains. With the help of my mother, the stain was easily removed by water and a small amount of detergent. Lastly, it might surprise you but the bag's fabric is made of water resistant material. Yay for rainy days! 

Aesthetics was the main reason why I was driven to purchase my first Hellolulu. I love its Japanese inspired structure. I love that the bag looks like a lunch pouch or a backpack, only to discover that it was a tote bag. I can use it as a messenger bag with the long strap or simply rely on the short handles, making it feel like almost a handbag. 

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