Page 1

Issue x


GOLD RUSH Is now the right time to invest in precious metals?


Chinese contemporary art, property and natural resources are all attracting informed investors


Exclusive interviews with the Wolf of Wall Street, Vartkess Knadjian of Backes and Strauss and Simon Berry


Ferraris, fine wine, fashion and your essential guide to Hong Kong’s most talented tailors


Feature Name



S A L E S | R E S T O R AT I O N | PA R T S | S E R V I C I N G

Aston Workshop Aisia Ltd

Aston Martin DB4 Series 1

INVEST IN AN ORIGINAL AUTOMOTIVE LEGEND! Aston Workshop Aisia Ltd. 00852 98420355

0044 7785 115737

Red Row Beamish Co.Durham United Kingdom DH9 0RW Telephone +44 1207 233525 Fax +44 1207 232202 Email:

Contents 12 15

Editor’s Letter and Contributors The writers and photographers who helped make this issue happen What is Millionaireasia? A brief explanation of the VIP club

Invitations 18 20

44th Summit Millionaireasia’s latest investment dinner De Grisogono Members are invited to meet the man behind the luxury jewellery brand

22 24

Backes and Strauss Diamond watches were the order of the day at this intimate event in Macau EFG Top experts from EFG bank advised on investments

26 28

Singapore and Malaysia A look at Millionaireasia events across Asia PIES Save the date for our next property investment exhibition and seminar

Insights 31

Dubai Your guide to a business trip in the Emirates

32 34

Abu Dhabi Where to stay, eat and play in the UAE capital Hypoxi A new health craze arrives in Hong Kong

35 White Cube Gilbert and George are the first artists to exhibit at this new gallery in Central 37 Holiday in a Hurry Coverage of the exclusive Trisara resort in Phuket 38 Artistic Sole Would you buy the world’s most expensive flip flops? 40 East vs West Head East to Japan or West to France for your next ski trip 42 Mango Tree The acclaimed Thai restaurant chain launches in Hong Kong


16/f Chao’s Building, 143-145 Bonham Strand, Sheung Wan, Hong Kong Telephone: 3620 3157 Fax: 2522 3068

48 52

Global Forecast Predictions for the rest of the financial year from three experts The Golden Rule Is now the time to invest in the precious metal?


Contemporary Chinese Art Speaking to insiders about who and what to invest in


Billion Dollar Homes Why super high end property will never be a bad investment


Hot Property Now is the time to invest in Kuala Lumpur


Insiders 76

Creating Change Kevin Yeung introduces his new online health platform,

80 84

Taming the Wolf An exclusive with Jordan Belfort, Wolf of Wall Street How I Make it Work Simon Berry, CEO of wine company Berry Bros & Rudd discusses family business

88 90

Stepping Stones Vartkess Knadjian on the diamond watch collection at Backes & Strauss Weathering the Storm Wise words from experts at Standard Chartered Bank


Inspiration 94

Tailor Made Uncovering Hong Kong’s best bespoke suitmakers

96 104

Suit Yourself Geared up and groomed on the city streets Mine to Mine Treat yourself to a new diamond pendant from this luxurious collection

106 108 110 118

Going Coco The new jewellery collection from Chanel New Jewels Forevermark’s stunning Millemoi collection The Hot 10 Millionaireasia’s ultimate shopping list Face the Music Celebrating 50 years of KEF’s superior speaker systems

120 122 124

Bottles of Bubbles Germany’s premium sparkling wine arrives at S&D German Wine Room in Hong Kong Back in Time Introducing a new retro watch from Glashütte Into the Blue A new bottle for Johnnie Walker Blue Label whisky

PAGE 110

End Note 128

Last Word Getting reflective with Hong Kong businessman John Hung




Millionaireasia is a VIP club exclusively for Asia’s business elite. Produced in Hong Kong and China by INFO/NATION

Managing Director

Ed’s note It’s the Year of the Dragon and our team decided to celebrate by breathing hot new fire into the magazine. Those of you with a keen creative eye will notice a few key design changes, some subtle, some not-so subtle – like our brand new Insights section, filled with bitesize news and notes on all things fabulous. You’ll also find our usual departments – Investment, Insiders and Inspiration – covering everything from Chinese contemporary art and tailoring to property and diamonds. We bagged some exciting interviewees this issue too, including enfant terrible Jordan Belfort, otherwise known as the Wolf of Wall Street – and Vartkess Knadjian, the dapper owner of Backes and Strauss. Beyond the magazine, we’re also busy developing our new website, which will be rolled out alongside our inaugural monthly enewsletter Invest and Inspire. With an exciting calendar of events planned too, 2012 really is shaping up to be huge – we look forward to celebrating with you.

Roger Searl

Membership services Carrie Wan Event Director

Sonya Yeung


Dominique Afacan

Creative Director

Sam Growdon

ADVERTISING AND SPONSORSHIP +852 3620 3157 Partnerships directors Steve Bruce Katie Vajda Elizabeth Leung Jadie Rees Partnerships manager Max Hussain

Dominique Afacan - Editor

Sam Growdon Originating from the country famous for diamonds and gold, this South African creative director, in addition to designing this issue of Millionaireasia, also wrote and photographed the feature on bespoke tailoring in HK.


Christie Simpson Hong Kong based fashion stylist Christie has been dressing celebrities and models for over ten years. For this issue she pounded Hong Kong’s busy streets laden with designer suits and accessories for our photo shoot

Nicky Burridge Writer Nicky has spent the past 11 years writing about all things finance related, and this issue penned our gold cover story. Based in Hong Kong, she writes for the Daily Mail, the South China Morning Post among others.

Millionaireasia Singapore Ivy Toh +65 9795 4094

Millionaireasia Indonesia Ann Delny +62 816 112 8296

Millionaireasia Malaysia Valerie Slew +6016 212 6388

Millionaireasia India Parineeta Sethi +91 11 46055000

MillionaireasiaChina Eric Tam + 86 147 1492 9670

Millionaireasia Japan Ian Tu +81 3 5770 5236

Millionaireasia Hong Kong is published under license from Events Creation Pte Ltd. All rights reserved. Title and trademark registered. No part of this publication may be reproduced in any form without the written consent of the publisher. The views and opinions expressed or implied in Millionaireasia are those of the contributors and advertisers and do not necessarily reflect those of the publisher.

Taj. Forever seductive, forever trusted, forever enchanting. From authentic Indian palaces to landmark city hotels, from dazzling resort properties to pastoral safari lodges, enjoy a thoughtful blend of tradition and modernity in the distinctive and highly personal Taj manner. Fabulous suites, splendid dining, and tranquil Jiva spas await. Discover the Taj difference at over 85 hotels around the world. For re s e r vati on s a n d sp ecia l o f f ers, p l ea se visi t ta j h otel s.c om, ema i l reser va ti on s@ta j h otel s.c om, c all 00.800.4588.1825 t o l l f ree, o r co n t a ct yo ur t ravel c on sul ta n t. I n d i a • N e w Yo r k • B o s t o n • S a n F r a n c i s c o • L o n d o n • D u b a i • C a p e To w n • Z a m b i a • M a r r a k e c h • M a l d i v e s • S r i L a n k a • L a n g k a w i • B h u t a n • S y d n e y

INTRODUCTION Millionaireasia

What is Millionaireasia? An introduction to Asia’s most exclusive member’s club

Reserved for the top business leaders in each market, Millionaireasia provides vital investment information and experiences built around the exact needs and passions of our members. In addition to this magazine, hand-delivered to you every quarter, look out for our new monthly e-newsletter and soon-to-be launched member website packed with investment ideas, video interviews and brand insights. At the heart of Millionaireasia is our extensive calendar of private events. From exclusive investment opportunities, pre-public property launches through to private showings of rare diamonds, limited edition cars, watches and wine, our events are designed to give you highly memorable experiences and exclusive benefits. All of our events are private and never open to the public or press. With over 50 events last year in Hong Kong alone it is important that we understand your interests so we can ensure we send you invitations to the most relevant events. Please take a moment to complete the form inserted in these pages to ensure you continue to enjoy these benefits. We look forward to seeing you at some of the exciting events we have lined up this year.



Ranked No. 1 Overall Best Private Bank in Indonesia

(as voted by HNWIs with US$ 1m AUM upwards)

Ranked No. 2 Overall Best Global Private Bank in Asia (as voted by HNWIs with US$ 1-5m AUM)

Ranked No. 2 Overall Best Private Bank in Singapore (as voted by HNWIs with US$ 1-5m AUM)

Ranked No. 3 Overall Best Private Bank in India (as voted by HNWIs with over US$ 25m)

HONG KONG 18th Floor, International Commerce Centre, 1 Austin Road West, Kowloon Tel +852 2298 3000 SINGAPORE 25 North Bridge Road, #07-00 EFG Bank Building Tel +65 6595 4888


Top Marques

The Venetian Macau, Nov 24-27th Supercar show Top Marques came to Macau for the first time in November, giving visitors the chance to test drive Bugattis, Maseratis, and Lamborghinis around a specially built track. PIES partnered with HSBC Private Bank and Gulfstream to host a property pavilion at the event where we presented exciting investment opportunities from across the globe to Millionaireasia members and Top Marques visitors.



44th Summit

44th Summit

The Renaissance Hotel, February 22nd Demand for our 44th Summit last month was overwhelming, with members all eager to hear about our handpicked investment opportunites over a relaxed dinner. Speakers at the event included Justin Howard from Diamond Rock Investors who spoke about diamonds as an investment class and Floyd Smith from Petron Energy II who talked about the investment opportunities in re-worked oil wells.




De Grisogono

De Grisogono

The Wynn Macau, November 27th This exclusive event in Macau starred de Grisogono owner Fawaz Gruosi who enjoyed a 6-course Italian lunch with Millionaireasia members. Guests had the opportunity to try on key pieces from this exclusive brand including a beautiful 25 carat blue sapphire ring (see left).




Backes & Strauss

Backes & Strauss The Vista Room, MGM Macau, Dec 7

Selected Millionaireasia members attended this special event late last year where they had the opportunity to view and try on key pieces from the luxury watch collection over an indulgent high tea. Owner Vartkess Knadjian came to Macau for the event to give a presentation and an insight into this unique brand.





The Kee Club, October 27th In today’s uncertain global economy, 40 handpicked Millionaireasia members were keener than ever to hear from top experts at EFG bank as they advised on investing wisely in a shaky economy. The lunch at Hong Kong’s exclusive Kee Club featured speakers Bradley Okita (CEO) and Chris Shiu (Senior Portfolio Manager).



Legacy Program

Kuala Lumpur

Legacy launch, Royale Chulan, Oct 21st 120 members enjoyed rhe soft launch of Millionaireasia’s Legacy programme. The party featured a fashion presentation from Bally and a showcase from Vertu of their latest signature phones. Legacy members are role models and shining examples of altruism and philanthropy. Legacy is supporting various charities to make a clear difference and be a positive force for good.



Legacy launch, Seletar, Dec 13th Following a successful soft launch in Kuala Lumpur (see opposite), exclusive membership programme Legacy made its big debut in Singapore. The grand launch was held at the new Aviation Centre at Seletar, offering guests the chance to explore new aircraft models as well as test drive the latest BMW M cars. Brian Lim, Millionaireasia’s founder commented: “In business, contacts and access to the right people are priceless. A Legacy membership provides that vital link.”



Save the Date

Save the date for the next Property Investment Exhibition & Seminar May 26th 2012 PIES – Hong Kong’s most exclusive live property event is back, taking place on April 21st at the Grand Hyatt Residences. Delivering the most exciting and compelling property opportunities from around the world, this event is not to be missed. Visitors can expect to see everything from beachfront villas and private islands to commercial property and off-plan developments as well as lifestyle-led elements including fashion shows and chocolate tasting.



Decadent Dubai


he land of the tallest, the biggest and the brashest may have suffered at the hands of the global financial crisis – but a $10 billion loan from Abu Dhabi in 2009 helped get Dubai back on the rebound. The opening of the Burj (the tallest building in the world) two years ago proved that business is carrying on as usual – and expats continue to flood there to take advantage of the easy lifestyle and zero tax. Business travellers should be aware that the Arab business week runs from Sunday to Thursday – so avoid making calls or arranging meetings on a Friday as this is the Muslim day of rest. Conservative dress is advised, even in hot weather so be prepared to sweat buckets. Don’t even think about walking anywhere in the summer – the heat is utterly stifling so air conditioned taxis are the norm.

Factbook Currency: The Dirham (AD) Country Code: +971 Airline: Emirates Language: Arabic Population: 5,314,317 Religion: 96% Muslim

Where to stay, eat & what to do Mid-week - Emirates Towers This landmark hotel in Jumeirah, recognisable by its two soaring triangular towers, is just a short walk from DIFC (Dubai International Finance Centre). An on-site boulevard featuring restaurants and designer shops, as well as state-of-the-art meeting and conference rooms, means guests can get pretty much everything they need without leaving the hotel. A dedicated floor for female executives on the 41st floor features an incredible suite – the Deluxe Chopard. Weekend - One and Only The Palm In Dubai there are two branches of this luxury South African hotel chain, but for a weekend retreat, book into the option on The Palm. With manicured gardens, beautiful pools and creamy calming interiors, it’s the perfect place to relax after a hectic week of work.



Notes and News

Did you know?

EAT: The Ivy Across the road from the Dubai International Finance Centre, The Ivy attracts a business crowd who appreciate the fuss-free brasserie menu. For a big lunch meeting – book the 16 seat private dining room.

More than 28,000 glass panels, each individually hand-cut, were used in the exterior cladding of the Burj Dubai

TIME OUT • Zoom up the Burj, the world’s tallest building. • Head to Dubai mall to shop ‘til you drop. • Ski – indoors at the Mall of the Emirates. • Take an abra (traditional wooden boat) to historical neighbourhood Bur Dubai. • Eat by the Dubai Fountain which bursts into glorious life every 30 minutes.

Abu Dhabi

Just an hour away from Dubai by car, it’s easy to add an Abu Dhabi element to a trip to the UAE. Like Dubai, Abu Dhabi felt the pinch in 2009 but as oil prices recover this emirate is back on track. EAT: Park Hyatt – The Beach House The brand new Park Hyatt hotel with its beautiful beach, Atarmia spa and landscaped gardens is located on Saadiyat Island, the soon-to-be cultural centre of Abu Dhabi. Head to the Beach House for a Mediterranean style lunch overlooking the sea. TIME OUT: - Take a ride on the fastest rollercoaster in the world at STAY: Emirates Palace Ferrari World. This lavish ‘seven-star’ hotel is set in acres of beautifully - Head to town for landscaped park, with a private beach, a marina and a Shanghai Tang S/S 2012 men’s collection helipad fit for two ‘copters. Dominated by gold and marble, the Abu Dhabi F1 in the hotel, owned by the Abu Dhabi government is a source November. - Visit Sheikh Zayed Mosque, of national pride as well as the perfect hotel for visiting the biggest mosque in the UAE. high flyers.

For him...


Residences of unsurpassed beauty, now yours to own

Terms and conditions apply, please contact the Banyan Tree Residences Property Sales Centre for further information Tel. +66 (0)76 362 333 or

From Harrods to Hong Kong As warmer weather finally arrives in Hong Kong it’s time to shed the extra pounds and get back into those Vilebrequins. Enter Hypoxi, a high-tech ‘targeted weight loss’ system that started life in Harrods, London and has now cornered the Asian market. Aimed at both men and women, the regime involves wearing a specially designed vacuum suit to carry out moderate exercise (30 minutes on a bike or treadmill) three times a week. It works by increasing circulation in the lower

Private chefs direct to your kitchen... Ralph Lauren, Price Charles and Madonna are all clients – so it’s no wonder the arrival of Private Chefs Inc. in Hong Kong is causing a stir. While many households in the city already have helpers who take care of the cooking, Private Chefs Inc. only use professional level chefs, meaning Michelin standard food at your home or on your yacht. Founder Christian Paier’s top HK restaurants: Cépage ‘Chef Thomas Mayr worked at Munich’s Michelin Star Restaurant Tantris which has long been a favorite.’ Lung King Heen ‘Executive Chef Chan Yan Tak is the first Chinese chef to receive three Michelin stars.’ Bo Innovation ‘I love this place for its creativity & Chef Alvin Leung Jr.’s take on traditional Chinese dishes.’


half of the body, stimulating metabolism and energy burn on the waist, hips, thighs and bottom – typically problem areas for shifting weight. Happily for bread and pasta addicts, users are advised to eat carbs before each workout and are told not to do any other exercise on their Hypoxi days. The results can be dramatic, with losses of up to 30cm in just four weeks. Book a month’s session in April and you can hit the beach looking like a champion by May!


Feature Notes and Name News

New art gallery arrives in Central British gallery White Cube is one of the world’s best contemporary art spaces, often credited with launching the careers of Damien Hirst and Tracey Emin. The recent opening of their new venue in Hong Kong feeds the everincreasing interest of art aficianados in the city. China (HK included) is Until May 5, visitors the second largest art can view the gallery’s market in the world, inaugural show by snapping up 23% of British duo Gilbert and global sales. George – where they are premiering their exhibition ‘London’s Pictures.’

Did you know?

Every Second Counts The Centigraph Sport is part of the new ‘lineSport’ collection from Swiss luxury watchmakers F.P Journe. The collection is inspired by a commited F.P collector and sportsman who wanted an ultra light watch to wear for marathons and triathlons. The result is a timepiece that weighs only 55 grams and is entirely made of aluminium alloy.

For her...

Shanghai Tang, S/S 2012 women’s collection

ART HK is hitting Hong Kong from 17-20th May this year. The art fair attracted 260 of the world’s leading galleries from 38 different countries last year – and more of the same is promised for 2012. In the midst of all the cultural change happening right now in Hong Kong, from the US$2.1 billion West Kowloon Cultural District to the renovation of the Central Police Station into an exhibiton venue, 2012 is shaping up to be an exciting year for HK’s culture vultures.

00 35

Welcome to the premier life速 Enrich your travel experience with BEST WESTERN PREMIER throughout Asia, a collection of distinctive hotels as unique and authentic as the destinations in which they are located. Each place offers a voyage for those who live for discovery. BEST WESTERN PREMIER locations in Asia: China | India | Indonesia | Japan | Malaysia | Philippines | South Korea | Thailand | Vietnam Visit or call toll free +800 0013 1779

Manila, Philippines

Nagasaki, Japan

Seoul, South Korea

Manila, Philippines


Feature Notes and Name News


Call the shots

Take your games room to new heights of hip with this toughened glass pool table from Nottage Design. A special surface replicates the feel of the more traditional cloth tables and it can even be converted to a dining table with a special three piece cover. Priced at HK$500,000.

For the home... Caneva Vase, Armani Casa

Holiday in a Hurry Take the weekend off and fly to Phuket. The exclusive Trisara is just ten minutes from the airport – so you can minimise travel time and maximise time away from work. Millionaireasia recommends the ocean front pool villa for both privacy and luxury with views of the Andaman Sea and a private infinity pool. While you’re there: The Phuket International Boat Show will be taking place in April at the Royal Phuket Marina.

00 37


Notes and News

Artistic sole David Palmer Chipkos flip-flops

Don a pair of these artistic flip-flops and help save 100,000 square feet of Costa Rica’s endangered rainforest. Hand painted by the Los Angeles based artist, David Palmer, they will set you back HK$140,000. You’ll be helping preserve the land, species and natural resources of the area. The sandals are being hailed as “the world’s most expensive flip flops.” Whether you frame them or wear them, engage in philanthropy in style by protecting more than just your feet.


00 38

AMAZING DESIGNER BALI VILLAS from just $295k USD Rice is a truly unique and awe inspiring spa resort with a six star luxe vibe, set into a dramatic amphitheatre of lush farmed rice paddy terraces

19 beautiful villas for sale in a 6 star luxury spa resort Fully managed with a unique business model villa owners share resort operations revenue as well as rental income Yields from 13.3% net (based on very low occupancy!) Located in Bali’s most exciting investment hotspot of Tabanan In a magical valley of lush paddy terraces with restaurant, organic cocktail bar, infinity pools, yoga pavilion Developed alongside the local community for a sustainable resort that benefits all Free designer furniture pack worth $15k for all Claire Brown Realty clients

FREE OF CHARGE TO RESERVE A VILLA - CONTACT US NOW / +852 6807 9560 / +44 7766 492961


Notes xxxxxxxxxxxx and News


East vs West Ski inspiration in France and Japan

Whether you’re slotting in a last minute trip or planning your next, take a look at these two resorts, one in Japan and one in France that Millionaireasia has selected as two of the world’s best. France: Cheval Blanc in Courcheval gives ski in/ski out access to the famous Trois Vallees in the French Alps. Owned by Bernard Arnault, chairman of LVMH, the allsuite hotel includes Michelin quality meals, helicopter transportation and all the interior treats you’d expect with the backing of the French luxury goods company. Japan: Featuring Niseko’s first rooftop bar and eight beautiful suites, the Green Leaf Hotel is located at the base of Mount Niseko An’nupuri in Japan. With artworks from Soichiro Tomioka and Emi Shiratori and a superb restaurant Goshki, this hotel is the most stylish in town. The Gear: Stay safe on the slopes with a helmet from luxury Swiss brand Zai. It’s extremely lightweight, with ear protection and a chinstrap fitted with merino wool and leather. HK$6000,



Notes xxxxxxxxxxxx and News

Dining Out

Mango Tree launches in Hong Kong

With existing branches in Bangkok, London and Dubai – the arrival of Thai chain Mango Tree in Causeway Bay, Hong Kong was music to the ears of jetsetting gourmands who already know and love the restaurant. Using the freshest ingredients, diners can expect traditional Thai dishes presented with a contemporary twist. The Thai shrimp cakes and the red beef curry are both top choices. Wash them down with a coconut martini if you feel like shaking things up. MA’s table recommendation: Ask for a table in the private room at the back of the restaurant for more privacy and a calmer dining experience.

Did you know?

It’s Songkran from 13-15 April – or Thai New Year. Tradition requires locals to pour water all over each other!


Elegantly Jaded The Senzanome name is famed for its beautiful limited edition jade pendants, created by design duo Giulio Zecchini and Memo Ozdogan. For 2012 the talented team have come up with this contemporary design (left) to celebrate the Year of the Dragon. Using Type A jade from Burma and 18k gold, each piece is unique and extremely wearable.

00 42


ONE Energy

8th Floor, Two Exchange Square, 8 Connaught Road, Central, Hong Kong Tel +852 2297 2495 Email Visit For more information on Petron Energy II, inc. please contact ONE Energy Investments Ltd

Investment 10 most expensive cities to live in

Worldwide Cost of Living 2012 -











Cheapest? Karachi, Pakistan


okyo has held the top spot in worldwide cost of living surveys for nearly twenty years, but this year the annual results from the Economist Intelligence Unit put Zurich in first place, largely blamed on strong currency movements in recent years. Second Swiss city Geneva moved up six places to joint third place with Osaka. Zurich is now 48 times more expensive to live in compared to Hong Kong, with Tokyo falling just a little under at 45% more pricey. London only ranked 17th, tied with Adelaide, Brussels and Wellington. No American cities fell into the top ten and New York placed 47th, tied with Chicago. The index measures the cost of living in more than 130 cities using a weighted average of the prices of various products and services.

Country City WCOL index Rank Rank Movement (Hong Kong = 100) Switzerland Zurich 148 1 4 Japan Tokyo 145 2 -1 Japan Osaka Kobe 138 3 -1 Switzerland Geneva 136 4 6 Norway Oslo 133 5= -2 France Paris 133 5= -2 Australia Sydney 129 7 -1 Australia Melbourne 128 8 0 Singapore Singapore 125 9 -3 Germany Frankfurt 119 10 -1

“Both Japan and Switzerland have seen strong currency movements over the last few years which have made them relatively more expensive. This has become especially true of Switzerland in the last year, where investors looking for a haven currency outside the beleaguered Eurozone have invested heavily in the Swiss Franc, prompting an unprecedented move by the Swiss government to peg the Swiss Franc to the Euro to keep the currency competitive.� 45


Worldwide Cost of Living

Calculating every day costs HK$=100 Utilities Domestic help Recreation



149 222 223 143 153 211 197 160 162 116

132 101 101 130 149 100 124 118 166 111

141 134 118 110 220 125 191 183 179 100

Cost of White bread?

(1kg at supermarket in US$) Zurich 6.15 Paris $6.57 Singapore $3.19 London $2.26 Hong Kong $2.91 Beijing $1.85 Bangkok $2.47

Five least expensive cities to live in




130 131 Jeddah, Saudi Arabia

Zurich $5.38 Paris $3.93 Singapore $2.54 London $4.81 Hong Kong $1.77 Beijing $2.23 Bangkok $1.44

New Delhi, India

White rice?

(1kg at supermarket in US$)

199 161 150 189 142 165 153 152 120 124

Tehran, Iran

“As well as currency movement, structural factors maintain the high cost of living in many of the top cities. Despite Eurozone weaknesses affecting markets like Greece, Ireland, Portugal, Spain and Italy, evidence is that German and French cities are still relatively expensive with Paris and Frankfurt holding firm in the ten most expensive. Oslo, which was considered the world’s most expensive city only a few years ago also sits towards the top of the ranking although Singapore’s presence in the top ten highlights a shift away from Western Europe towards Asian hubs. Cities from the Asia Pacific region (including Australasia) now make up half the ten most expensive. That said, Western Europe still accounts for 24 of the most expensive cities in the top 50, with 14 hailing from Asia.” Cost of

Mumbai, India

348 206 240 361 203 337 279 225 78 341

Karachi, Pakistan

City Food Household Zurich 119 180 Tokyo 168 145 Osaka Kobe 148 134 Geneva 102 164 Oslo 90 169 Paris 107 163 Sydney 86 141 Melbourne 86 137 Singapore 92 97 Frankfurt 81 142

“The cheapest cities in the ranking are dominated by Asian and Middle Eastern cities. The latter of these is due, in part, to the use of price controls and the pegging of currencies to the US dollar. astructural basis, with cheap labour and land costs making India and Pakistan incredibly attractive to those bargain hungry visitors or investors willing to brave some of the security risks that accompany such low prices, especially in Pakistan.”

More about the Economist Intelligence Unit Woldwide Cost of Living survey EIU researchers survey a range of stores. Prices reflect costs for more than 160 items in each city. These are not recommended retail prices or manufacturers’ costs; they are what the paying customer is charged. Prices gathered are then converted into a central currency (US dollars) using a prevailing exchange rate and weighted in order to achieve comparative indices. The costof-living index uses an identical set of weights that is internationally based and not geared toward the spending pattern of any specific nationality. Items are individually weighted across a range of categories and a comparative index is produced using the relative difference by weighted item.

00 46

GLOBAL FO Millionaireasia talks to three experts about the outlook for investors in 2012. Words by Andrew Wood

Expert panel

Thomas Meier, Julius Baer


Peter Wynn Williams, The Henley Group

Stuart Crow, Jones Lang

INVESTMENT 2012 Outlook

ORECAST Stuart Crow, International Director, Head of Asia Pacific Capital Markets, Jones Lang LaSalle


here is no question that there has been instability in property markets since July or August last year. That’s due to a combination of factors. Europe’s problems are one of them. But there’s a lot of optimism that things will settle down – not necessarily that there’ll be a massive improvement, but at least there’ll be a stabilisation. Deflation is affecting many markets. I don’t think interest rates are going up any time soon. We’re starting to see that on the rental side of things, especially offices, where we’re forecasting smaller declines than we were a few months ago. Property markets are probably not going to be dissimilar to what the equity markets may look like. Investors can make money in any property market. There are a few things you want to look at. One is cycles – where the markets are in a regular cycle. So you need to look at where there is

inherent growth. The other thing to consider is liquidity. Look at markets that don’t have high barriers to entry, that don’t have big restrictions on foreign investment – and where people can get in and out quickly if they want to. Australia has all those attributes, and many foreign investors are looking Down Under for those very reasons. We’ve moved some way through the cycle but we’re still a long way from the previous peak. There is inherent growth largely based on Asia. And it’s a very transparent market. There is perhaps some concern about a high Aussie dollar, but there’s a lack of credit and bank financing that makes Australia very different to many Asian markets. That creates opportunity, particularly for development. The other place worth looking at is right at the other end of the region: Japan. In Japan there are no foreign

Investors can make money in any property market Stuart Crow

investment restrictions, lots of liquidity, and it’s a nice deep market. Prices have been falling for some time so hopefully the market is reaching the bottom of the cycle. Both Australia and Japan have the highest rental yields in the region. I think people are gravitating towards yield, as they have for a several years, as a defensive mechanism. Financing is cheap in Japan. The cash-on-cash yields there – the ratio of cash generated before tax to the total cash invested – are higher than anywhere else in the region. The yields are six or seven per cent, but the debt costs almost nothing.


IVESTMENT 2012 Outlook

also high-dividend stocks. We have found that smaller stock markets in Asia can be particularly attractive value propositions. Look at Weimar German, Brazil, Argentina, the Philippines, Indonesia, and even and now in this century we’ve had Thailand. Last year the MSCI Emerging Zimbabwe and most recently Belarus all Markets index fell by 20 per cent, and going down this route. the Asia Pacific EM index was down by And in every single case, those 16 per cent. examples of hyperinflation were the You have to understand where the result of governments printing money entry levels are. It’s not a buy-and-hold to fund deficit spending. Which is type of strategy. You have to take a more exactly what the Europeans, Americans trading-oriented approach. But when you and Japanese are now doing. have clear ideas of what asset classes I think people all over the world you want to take an exposure in order to are becoming disillusioned. People manage the risks, then I think that would are getting angry. They’re work very well. seeing prices going up Until the European crisis and their currencies is resolved, we are depreciating. advising clients to stay Investors are on the sidelines as far looking for as European markets something are concerned. And to trust, and it’s right to take – this isn’t a a cautious stand mainstream view about companies in – that ultimately Asia that depend on is gold. European exports. Tom Meier But have a look at Li & Fung, (which makes clothes and lots of other consumer goods for Europe and North American markets.) It got hammered last year, but Tom Meier any slight upturn in consumer confidence Head of Asia, Julius Baer will go straight onto the stock price. There’s nothing wrong in having an n the next year, like last year, it’s exposure to physical gold. In fact you going to be about trying not to should do. That’s a stance that we’ve lose money in a rather volatile taken for quite a while. For assets like environment. We need to see a clear oil, we advise taking a neutral to more solution to the European crisis before bearish approach. You never know markets return to normal – an approved what might happen geopolitically in plan and an agreed plan. Then there are elections in Europe and the United States the Middle East, and if you really look coming up that are adding a nervous spin at structural demand, it’s soft, and that suggests a neutral stand. On the to the situation. agricultural side, we’re also neutral So, I think you really want to because of increased output from concentrate on this hemisphere, favourable weather conditions. particularly in view of the European As for currencies, my personal view crisis. Asian clients, as with every is that you should focus on content, client, have a tendency to invest in or underlying assets, and not play a markets they are familiar with, and in currency as an investment. Obviously Asia you are going to get a really nice there will be a need to trade currencies diversity of investments. There are lots to buy or sell assets, but you should only of opportunities that you can tap. For look at a time frame of 24 hours. example, high-yield fixed income, and

Peter Wynn Williams Investment Director, The Henley Group


e’ve always been big advocates of well-diversified portfolios, but I honestly do find it difficult to make a case at the moment for investing in anything except the monetary metals – gold and silver – although I have been saying something similar for the last ten years. At Henley we divide the investment universe into six classes: cash and currencies, equities, fixed income, commodities, real estate and alternatives (like hedge funds, and so on). Over the past ten years a number of those asset classes that we’ve been able to recommend with any conviction has been falling. And now it’s just basically fallen to the one – the monetary metals – because we see the world as being in a giant monetary crisis which has been going on since 2006. We saw inflationary dangers ahead as long ago as 2002 when interest rates were pushed down so low and monetary policy became too loose. So then we started to put money into gold. And we’ve accelerated that process over the past few years because things seem to be going from bad to worse. The authorities’ response to problems seems simply to be to lend more money to insolvent banks which to me, seems to be doomed to failure, frankly. The problem is that all of these economic and financial decisions are being driven by politicians. Take the sovereign debt crisis in Europe. Well, it’s not really a sovereign crisis, the problem is the euro. And the one thing that the politicians are not willing to compromise on is the euro. Clearly one breaking point could be the debt repayments that Greece has to make in March. Central banks at the moment don’t seem to have any alternative solution to printing more money. So they’re walking a tightrope at the moment between printing enough, and printing too much. And history is replete with where it’s ended up with too much money being printed. In the last century we had


I think you really want to concentrate on this hemisphere


THE GOLDEN RULE An update on the investment potential of gold and diamonds. By Nicky Burridge


old has enjoyed a spectacular bull run over the past decade. With world economies in the doldrums and high inflation an ongoing problem, many investors have turned to the precious metal in a bid to preserve their wealth. The price of gold has soared more than five-fold since 2000, jumping from US$290 per troy ounce (unit of weight used for precious metals) to a record high of just over US$1,900/oz reached in early September 2011.The precious metal has traditionally appealed to investors because it provides an inflation hedge. At a time when the worth of fiat currencies is being eroded by inflation, the yellow stuff tends to holds its value. But while investors often turn to gold during periods of economic uncertainty, there is another asset class that offers many of the same advantages, namely diamonds. The price of diamonds has been on a steady upward trajectory during the past five decades, and while the stones have not seen the stellar returns produced by gold in recent


INVESTMENT Gold vs Diamonds

INVESTMENT Gold vs Diamonds

years, their price has been much less volatile – evening out the returns over time. Diamond prices vary according to the colour, cut, clarity and number of carats of a stone – the so-called four Cs. A one carat diamond of premium, ideal

Benjamin Sweetman, chief diamond trader for Diamond Rock Investors, says: “No major new mine discoveries are predicted after 2015. At current and predicted demand levels present mines may struggle to meet demand. There is a strong probability of price acceleration

Demand for diamonds is also expected to grow in the years ahead, particularly in the Chinese and Indian markets. cut with excellent clarity and colour has seen annual price increases of more than 4.5% during the 50 years to 2010, rising from US$2,700 in 1960 to US$25,410. Both gold and diamonds have a strong market dynamic in their favour: demand for both assets is expected to significantly outstrip supply in the years ahead, forcing up prices. Not only are the precious metal and stones used in jewellery, but both commodities also have widespread industrial uses, which, combined with their inflation-beating appeal, helps to ensure demand remains strong, even during periods of recession. Yan Chen, a gold analyst at Standard Chartered, predicts gold production will grow by just 3.6% annually over the next five years. But demand for the metal is expected to soar as central banks turn from being net sellers of gold to net buyers. The Chinese and Russian governments are expected to be significant purchasers going forward, while consumer demand from the growing middle classes in China and India is also expected to be strong. Chen says: “We believe that these factors can potentially drive the gold price to US$5,000/oz.” Demand for diamonds is also expected to grow in the years ahead, particularly in the Chinese and Indian markets, while there are no major new sources of supply of the stones on the horizon.


in 2012.” He adds that diamond values also benefit from so-called reliable rarity, as the stones are many times rarer than gold. This helps to provide a hedge against market fluctuations, as well as inflation. But despite the obvious advantages of gold and diamonds, the assets also have downsides for investors. The price of gold can be volatile, despite its safehaven status. Negative equity price movements can exert downward pressure on the metal, as investors who are nursing losses from share price falls are forced to liquidate their gold holdings in order to raise cash. Currency movements, such as the weakness of the Euro, can also bear down on the price of gold. There are also concerns in some quarters that a gold bubble has built up, following the recent steep price rises. The pessimists appeared to be right in September last year, when gold lost 10% of its value in just four sessions, and tumbled by nearly 20% in a little over a month. But the price has since rallied, and while it has not yet matched its previous highs, the general view is that gold values will continue to increase steadily in the years ahead. Suki Cooper, of Barclays Capital, says: “The market backdrop of negative real interest rates, concerns about rising inflation and currency debasement, financial market and economic

Fast facts

2 500 The amount of gold, in tonnes that is mined every year in the world.

Canada Peru Indonesia Russia China Australia United States of America South Africa TOP 8 GOLD PRODUCING COUNTRIES

DID YOU KNOW? The largest Diamond ever found was the Cullinan at 3,106 carats. Diamond is the hardest substance on Earth 80% of the world’s diamonds are not suitable for jewellery. Most diamonds found in nature are between one to three billion years old. Source:

Investing in gold

Buying diamonds is easy, selling them can be more difficult due to fears about fraud and scams. insecurity, and rising sovereign debt risk, remain favourable to gold.” Thomas Paterson, chief economist of Gold Made Simple, echoes this view, and he has pencilled in a fouryear price target of US$7,500/oz. There are also a number of issues investors need to consider before putting money into diamonds. As an asset class they are illiquid. Although buying diamonds is easy, selling them can be more difficult due to fears about fraud and scams. Rare coloured or larger stones tend to appreciate in value the most, but these are correspondingly more expensive to buy, requiring a bigger upfront investment. Investors can also find themselves at the mercy of changing fashions and tastes. Pink diamonds may be all

the rage now, but they could seem passé in a decade’s time. Equally, the popularity of different cuts changes with time. The unique nature of rare diamonds also means it can be difficult to gauge their value, while tracking price movements is generally more difficult than for gold. This is beginning to change, however, with the launch of indexes that track the wholesale prices paid for diamonds. And the potential this gives to open up the diamond market offers an opportunity for investors. Sweetman is clear where he would put his money: “Diamonds are superior to gold. The average return of diamonds is equivalent to gold, without the speculation and volatility,” he says.

Investors who want to put money into gold have a number of options. • Buying physical gold, such as bullion coins or small gold bars, which rise and fall directly in line with the gold price. • Buying gold certificates, issued by banks in countries such as Germany, Switzerland and Australia. • Investing in gold exchange traded funds (ETFs). • Putting money into gold futures contracts – a binding commitment to buy or sell gold at a set price on a set date. • Gold options, under which the investor takes out the right but not the obligation to buy or sell gold at a set price on a certain date, offer a variation on futures, but with less risk. • Buying shares in gold mines or investing in gold orientated investment funds.

Investing in diamonds The illiquid nature of diamonds makes options more limited for investors than with gold. • Investors can buy physical diamonds. Large and coloured stones tend to appreciate the most due to their rarity value. • Alternatively they can invest in diamond funds, such as the KPR Diamond Fund and the Diamond Circle Capital Fund, which operate as collective investment vehicles buying high value diamonds.


INVESTMENT Petron Energy Ⅱ

INVESTING IN OIL ONE Energy’s merge with Petron Energy II means more opportunity for investors.

ONE Energy was featured in MA a while back. Can you update our members on what changes have taken place since then? We have had some exciting changes. Since speaking at the 38th Millionaireasia Summit, ONE Energy successfully merged its Texas oil and gas assets with a publically traded oil and gas company, Petron Energy II Inc. (PEII). As with ONE Energy, Petron Energy II’s strategy is to focus on low risk re-work and drilling opportunities in areas with a proven production history, providing greater consistency in well development and stable long-term cash flow. So how does Petron Energy II differ from ONE Energy’s previous model? The most important difference is that Petron Energy II is a publicly listed company. It’s the total package; we are positioned as a fully integrated oil and gas company. This allows us to take a project from inception through production and revenue generation. By operating the wells we have greater cost controls over the entire project. What is Petron’s Corporate Strategy? Our strategy is to acquire and exploit low-risk assets in proven areas of Texas and Oklahoma where multiple pay zones


Petron Energy II’s strategy is to focus on low risk re-work and drilling opportunities in areas with a proven production history.

exist. Multiple pay zones are layered (typically vertical) sections of the earth where oil and natural gas deposits are located. Multiple pay zone plays provide Petron II with assets which have long life reserves. We effectively manage development and infrastructure costs associated with bringing additional production online from properties. We believe it is extremely important to implement proven technologies to maximize daily production rates from existing fields. The acquisition of ONE Energy’s Texas wells is consistent with this strategy.

able to reduce transportation fees thereby creating improved profits. Ownership of the pipeline provides us access to primary leases which assure Petron II of growing its acreage, production, revenues and reserves. Our well services unit provides access to valuable services which reduces well down time allowing for greater consistency of well operations. This unit will also provide services to third-party customers which creates another revenue stream for PE II. The operating company provides PE II greater controls concerning operational cost and other efficiencies.

Does Petron II have subsidiaries? If so how can they create value for Petron II? Yes, Petron Energy II Pipeline, Petron Energy II Well Service and Petron Energy II Operating. Our mid-stream pipeline company allows Petron II exclusivity within the Oklahoma market. We are the only transporter of natural gas within a 50-60 square mile area. We are

Is there still an opportunity for investors to invest in a stake of an oil well? Yes, there is still an opportunity available for investors to invest [both directly in oil and gas wells that Petron operates and also in the company’s securities]. Through their investment in Petron II investors become shareholders in a publicly traded company.


INVESTMENT Petron Energy Ⅱ

Our strategy is designed to incorporate lowcost wells with high rates of returns. What does 2012 have in store for Petron Energy II? We are preparing to execute our plan of reworking 93 wells and drilling 10 new wells as well as several oil and gas properties to acquire by year end 2012. Completing this plan should position PE II for listing on the US Stock Exchange. Why choose oil over other investment assets? We believe the energy market offers a tremendous upside for our shareholders. If we consider the global significance of energy and its need to meet global demand, specifically in emerging markets like China and India the futuristic view is very encouraging. We strongly believe the long range optics in the energy industry are far more attractive when considering it to other investment vehicles. Why Invest in Petron Energy II? We have a high quality asset base with strong upside potential in low-risk, highly repeatable projects. Our strategy is designed to incorporate low-cost wells with high rates of returns. We


have a strong balance sheet with financial flexibility. Lastly management is invested in and aligned with Petron Energy II’s success through equity ownership. How would an interested investor get involved? We have a relationship with ONE Energy Investments Ltd., based here

How Petron Energy’s strategy maximises investment opportunity • Focused inventory of low-risk, highly repeatable projects • Strong economics in core liquid-rich plays • Emphasis on growth through the drill bit and acquisitions • Leverage mid-stream assets to serve both Petron Energy II and third-party customers • Experienced management team with operational expertise • Additionally the investors benefit by having access to a secondary market which allows them to sell their position in a timelier manor

in Hong Kong. They are not only a significant investor in PEII but are also our Asian representative. Investors interested in securing an investment in Petron Energy II Inc. and /or its projects, should contact ONE Energy Investments Ltd. What type of returns can an investor expect? We have a conservative strategy and believe the estimated ROI range can be 20% or better. How can investors keep track of their investment from overseas? Petron Energy II Inc. is a publicly listed company. We are a fully reporting company which means we have financial reporting obligations quarterly and annually. PEII has a higher threshold to meet regarding transparency because it is a public company. Investors are able to easily track their investments via our website and public filings.

Contact details ONE Energy Investments Ltd. 8th Floor, Two Exchange Square, 8 Connaught Road, Central, Hong Kong Phone: 852 2297 2495 Fax: 852 2297 0066,

26TH MAY 2012

Date: Saturday, May 26, 2012 Venue: The Residence, Grand Hyatt Hong Kong Exhibition: 12:00pm - 6.30pm VIP Seminar: 7 - 10pm Join us for drinks and meet the people behind the projects. Reserve your place at PIE+S now. call +852 3620 3157 or email





Talking to three local experts about Chinese contemporary art as an investment asset. Words by David Evans


ontemporary art has been one of the surprise success stories to come out of China since its economic reforms began back in the late 70s. In fact, it’s only in the last decade that the likes of Ai Weiwei, Cai Guoqiang and Cai Xin have become household names. Even more extraordinary is that in a short space of time pieces were soon changing hands for millions of dollars and Chinese artists were regularly breaking auction records.

The economic crash in 2007 should have put paid to what was looking dangerously like a bubble. But beyond a slight correction the market seems to have held up well with some commentators suggesting it’s still undervalued. Recently Anders Petterson, head of art research consultancy ArtTactic said, “Confidence in the Chinese contemporary art market remains high despite art market confidence dropping sharply in the US and European contemporary market.” So where is the smart money going in this arty asset class?

Above: Chen Wenling, Red Memory, No BIg Deal No. 2






The Gallery Owner Angela Li


he owner of Angeli Li Contemporary Gallery says that while there is interest across the board for Asian contemporary art, the greatest demand is for Chinese artists. She agrees with other market commentators that interest from Chinese collectors is helping to keep the market buoyant, although she believes the work is undervalued. “I see lots of Chinese new money coming to the market. A number of collectors are trying to build up respectable contemporary art collections. There are also a lot of big international collectors and institutions buying. The next couple

Angela’s top three: Chen Jiagang - Chinese photographer and former architect specialising in large format photographs. Chen Wenling - One of the most respected and acclaimed Chinese sculptors. Back in 2009 his large scale piece of Madoff being pushed up the wall by a raging bull caused a huge stir. Shi Jindian - Chinese artist who twists thin stainless steel wires into sculptural objects which have special social, historical and political meanings.

of decades are all about China. It is important not to miss the opportunity of collecting a slice of this historical development, which is reflected in the progression of the country’s contemporary art scene,” she explains. She says many early collectors were in it for a quick profit, but the market has now matured and so have the investors.

Instead of chasing a few big names they are taking the time to research the artists. “I recommend buying, but be selective. Hold what is good and trade in what might just be trendy for the time being. Study the artists’ works and artist statements carefully and talk to people in the industry,” she says.

The Investment Guru Jon Reade


s a former artist and gallery owner Jon Reade, who is now the managing director of Art Futures Group, should know what makes for a good investment, which is why his company is recommending mid-career artists. As a broker Art Futures sources the art, which can then be ‘rented’ to firms to hang on the walls of their offices. Jon says that on top of the capital appreciation investors can expect a 6% annual rental return on their purchase. “People may have invested in the traditional asset classes and because property has topped out and what with stocks being volatile they are looking for new areas in which to invest such as art, gold and wine,” he explains. Typical investors are drawn from the professions and might already have a portfolio of around US$1million. He’s also seen a growing interest in buyers from the east. Much of the art is drawn from midcareer artists, typically those in their 50s and 60s, and pieces cost around US$1520,000 and up to US$50,000. “In 2006/7/8 investors were mainly from overseas. Then when the financial crisis hit they pulled out of the market and prices dropped. You had some overproduction and pieces that artists should never have got money for, but now there is better regulation of the market and you’ve got more reputable dealers and artists and people from Asia

People may have invested in the traditional asset classes and because property has topped out and what with stocks being volatile they are looking for new areas to invest such as art, gold and wines.

are now buying the art,” he says. Jon thinks that part of the attraction of Chinese contemporary art is the possibility of a subversive or hidden message behind the image on the canvas. It’s this that makes it desirable to collectors and why there is a demand from firms to have such pieces adorning

1. Chu Teh-Chun (b.1920), Lueurs, 1981 2. Yin Kun, Chinese Baby 11-07, 2011 3. Chen Jiagang, Apprehension (Chongqing)



their board room walls. “I think people like the idea that if the authorities come knocking on (Yue Minjun’s) door in the middle of the night he’ll say ‘they are just smiley faces,’” says Reade referring to the artist’s trademark grinning self-portraits.

John’s top three: Yin Kun – Graduated from the Sichuan Apa Normal Junior College Fine Arts Department in 1992. He went to Beijing in 1993 and became a free painter. Liu Fei – Graduated from the Nanjing Academy of Fine Arts in 1989. His works have been collected globally and he has held over 10 solo exhibitions worldwide. Shen Jingdong – Graduated from the Nanjing Institute of Arts. He has become hugely successful, not only in China, but also in the US.

in China, prices appear to be ‘levelling off’. Again, his attention is towards second-tier artists who are flying under the radar because their work hasn’t been over publicised. “Over the last few years we’ve seen collectors from the Asia market – Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore, buying works back. It’s almost like collectors from the west validated the work and they are now buying back their heritage and expanding their collections,” he said. He said there are some artists that are keeping supply low in order to keep prices artificially high. His advice for those looking to invest is to “look for historical references, and ask yourself, ‘what is this picture about, what’s the message, is it in my price range and do I like it?’”

The Auctioneer Anthony McNerney


nthony McNerney, international director of Contemporary Art at Bonhams, doesn’t talk in terms of ‘investing’ in art. He says the market is too volatile and there are too many imponderables. He will, however, admit that there are those that have ‘made fortunes dealing in Chinese contemporary art.’ Like other major auction houses Bonhams has seen some of its sales of Chinese art break records. In fact, expectations for their May 25 Hong Kong sale of paintings by Chu The-Chun and Zao Wou-Ki are running high. Mr. McNerney says there is still a huge demand for artists that have a great track record, are fresh, have good provenance and are not ‘shopped around.’ He said that while there’s a ‘voracious’ demand among buyers of middle and high-end art from investors






Look for historical references, and ask yourself, what is this picture about, what’s the message, is it in my price range and do I like it?

4. Liu Fei, Women & Fashion No. 25, 2008 5. Shi Jindian, Changliang 750 with 2 Wheels 6. Shen Jingdong, Lei Feng, 2011 7. Luo’s Brothers, Welcome Welcome #1, 1999




BILLION DOLLAR HOMES A good investment


Why super prime property will never be a bad acquisition. Words by Nicky Burridge

he market for ultra high-end properties is booming as superwealthy individuals seek to insulate themselves from the current economic problems by putting their money into top end homes. Meanwhile, the creation of a rising number of multimillionaires and billionaires in recent years has led to increasing competition for a scarce number of prime properties in the world’s major international cities. Inevitably, the phenomenon is putting upward pressure on the price of top-end homes, despite the fact that

housing markets in many countries are suffering. International property advisers Savills says this strong demand from the ultra-wealthy has created a new global super class of real estate, and it recently launched a billionaires’ property index to track developments at the very top end of the market in 10 key international cities. The group found that homes typically bought by billionaires in Hong Kong, Shanghai, Singapore, Tokyo, London, Paris, New York, Sydney, Moscow and Mumbai, were significantly outperforming the rest of the property market. The price of super-prime properties in these cities soared by an

average of 10% during the first six months of 2011, while their value has increased by 65% in the past five years, despite the global financial turmoil seen during this period. The rise is nearly double the 6% increase in prices for homes typically bought by senior executives in major cities during the same period. Yolande Barnes, of Savills residential research department, says: “This increase reflects the speed at which new billionaires have been created – particularly in the ‘new world’ – and have invested in global real estate.” It will come as little surprise to many






INVESTMENT Property investors that Hong Kong leads the pack as the most expensive place in the world in which to buy a super-prime home. The city is in a league of its own in terms of prices, with super-luxury homes selling for an average of £6,700 (HK$82,000) per square foot, more than double the £3,090 (HK$38,000) per square foot commanded by homes in London, and 29% more expensive than Tokyo, which has the second highest prices. The high prices are being driven by “overwhelming demand.” Barnes says: “The extreme scarcity of prime houses on The Peak is perhaps an exaggerated caricature of the fundamental problem affecting all world class cities; there are simply just not enough of the most desirable properties to go round.” This dynamic has helped drive up the price of top-end homes by 83% in the five years to the end of 2010. But the same factors that limit supply and push up prices have a significant downside too. At an average of just over 5,000 square foot the homes of the super rich are smaller in Hong Kong than any of the other global cities looked at, with the exception of Moscow, where city centre apartments are usually complemented with 21,500 square foot country mansion for the weekend. However, concerns that a bubble is building up in the Hong Kong market are unfounded, according to Barnes. She says: “It is a common feature of world class cities that they are ‘unaffordable’ by local standards. More important to billionaires is the rarity of a product and most of the cities under study are short of space so prime property (the scarcest) carries a rarity premium.” She adds that there are also signs of a ‘wall of money’ waiting to get out of China, which should further boost demand in Hong Kong. But while the cost of luxury homes in Hong Kong has boomed during the past five years, Tokyo, the second most expensive of the global cities, has fared less well. Prices of top-end homes have

increased by just 11% in the five years to the end of 2010, and actually fell by 2% in the first six months of 2011. The Japanese market has a curious dynamic, in that it is the land and not the property that holds the value, with properties depreciating almost as soon as they are built. There is also less demand in the city from international billionaires.

The extreme scarcity of prime houses on The Peak is perhaps an exaggerated caricature of the fundamental problem affecting all world class cities; there are simply just not enough of the most desirable properties to go round. Unsurprisingly, the price growth of ultra high value homes during the past five years has been strongest in emerging ‘new world’ economies, mirroring the creation of new billionaires during the same period. Singapore, which now has the highest concentration of millionaire households in the world, leads the field with growth of 144%, followed by Mumbai at 138% and Moscow at 110%. But Shanghai bucks the trend, with top

end properties posting price growth of just 32% since 2005. Barnes explains: “Underperformance at the very top end of the market is undoubtedly linked to China’s closed market, where billionaire demand is solely domestic, unlike the rest of our cities which are also fuelled by international buyers.” The strong property price growth seen in new world cities in recent years, has caused old world ones, such as London, Paris and New York, to begin to look like good value, while currency weakness has also made investing in these cities more attractive. Although prime homes in these centres are unlikely to match the gains seen in new world ones, they do offer the relative price stability associated with more mature markets. “These established western markets have seen steady growth but not the same volatility as cities in the new world, making them attractive ‘safe havens’ for billionaires’ wealth,” Barnes says. In fact, around 40% of high-end properties in London are now bought by international buyers. Paris is also beginning to rival the UK’s capital as a store for international wealth. But will ultra high-end property continue to represent a good investment going forward? Barnes thinks so. “It is likely that the world class billionaire homes market will continue to out-perform other markets for as long as the boom in global commodities and other markets continues and helps create new billionaires,” she says. “Continuing political upheaval, war and civil unrest in various other parts of the world, will ensure that there is continued demand from the international elite for safe havens in world class cities.”

Did you know? A home on The Peak might sell for as much as HK$77k/square foot. That’s more than double the price for a similar property in London, the second-most expensive city for high-end homes.

Left: 1. London’s Hamilton Terrace (Savills) 2. Bomera, Sydney (Savills) 3. Anchorage Terrace, Gold Coast (L J Hooker) 4. Chelsea Square, London (Savills)


INVESTMENT St Mary Residences

HOT PROPERTY Why now is the perfect time to invest in Malaysian capital Kuala Lumpur


illionaireasia spoke to Eric Chan Kok Leong of Eastern + Oriental Berhad to find out why Kuala Lumpur is the city of the moment for investors – and why St Mary Residences should be on any buyer’s wish list. Why is now a good time to invest in property in KL? In 2008/2009, we saw the KL property market being hit by the financial crisis, albeit not as badly as some of its neighbours. It then entered a phase of recovery, and hit a high in 2010 but unfortunately in 2011/12 was weighed down by the European debt crisis. As such, the market is presently quite soft and savvy investors keeping a watch on the KL property clock will tell you that the time to invest is now. In the current market, buyers have the upper-hand to negotiate for the best deals and the icing on the cake is that Malaysia’s properties are among the most affordable in the region. How much have residential property prices risen over the past few years and what do you predict will happen over the next two years? Residential property prices have been rising due to inflation. However, adverse


world economic conditions will to a certain degree have a dampening effect on the Malaysian economy and the property sector. Yet, we should take some comfort that thus far, the Malaysian economy with its strong fundamentals has sustained moderate growth despite the challenging external conditions. Property investment is generally long term in nature and the astute investor will find that soft market conditions may just be the most opportune time to buy. What about rental yields? Gross rental yields are somewhat stable for KL properties with condominiums generally fetching between 5 to 7%. Most importantly, you are able to secure rental above your holding cost and hence, will not run the risk of a negative carrying cost. For investors looking at KL – which specific areas would you recommend? Obviously, the most sought-after locations in Kuala Lumpur are in the central business district (CBD) and in the vicinity of the Kuala Lumpur City Centre (KLCC). In line with this, E&O’s deliberate landbanking strategy has seen us acquiring landbanks within a 10-km radius from the KLCC, with some like the St Mary Residences being only an

8-minute walk to the iconic landmark. The other important consideration is the developer. It is not uncommon to find properties located along the same street but one may command a greater premium than others because it is backed by a strong developer. Buyers need a developer with a very strong track record. It is also vital to be aware of the prevailing trends in home and design concepts. For example, when E&O launched Dua Residency in 2004, it was among the first set of large-sized condominiums ranging from 2,0006,000 sq ft in the KLCC area. We had the first mover advantage and successfully anticipated and met the demand for such ample-sized abodes at that time. Then in 2009, when the market was just turning but still raw




from the effects of the financial crisis, we took the bold step to be among the first developers to re-enter the market and introduced St Mary Residences. These compact but cleverly laid-out condominiums were a hit and soon set a trend in the KL CBD for such units. With the first mover advantage, we are ahead of the curve and will be one of the earliest to be completed among similar developments in the city. This means that our buyers who intend to either resell or rent out their units will benefit from being the first to meet the demand in the market for such unit types. Can you explain the Malaysia My Second Home Programme? This is open to foreign citizens wishing to retire or reside in Malaysia on a long term basis. It is fully endorsed

by the Government of Malaysia and your immediate family (spouse and children) can also participate in the programme. Some of the key benefits and flexibilities you will enjoy under the Malaysia My Second Home programme include the following: • A 10-year Visit Pass and MultipleEntry Visa (renewable every ten years). • You can import a car or purchase a new car, tax-free and enjoy other tax incentives. • You can invest and own businesses in Malaysia. • You still retain your citizenship and all its privileges in your own country. You can come and go as you wish. There is no restriction on your stay and travelling. • Foreigners are permitted to buy either freehold or leasehold properties at a cost no less than RM 500,000 (around US$165, 000) each without seeking prior approval from the Foreign Investment Committee (FIC). There are also no restrictions in terms of usage of the property or the number of properties bought.

Gross rental yields are somewhat stable for KL properties with condominiums generally fetching between 5 to 7% rental yields.


INVESTMENT St Mary Residences


5 6

WHERE TO BUY NOW St Mary Residences

St Mary presents chic lifestyle luxury suites, conjuring the spirit of Manhattan’s iconic loft apartments but with a uniquely Malaysian character. The units boasts generous floor to ceiling glass windows, articulated at different angles to present the best views of the city. The floor plans are cleverly designed to maximise living space. Each unit’s in-facing walls follow the curvature of the central lift lobby, giving it a natural flow, relieving the monotony of flat walls. Luxury detailing and finishing complement the chic metropolitan character of Kuala Lumpur itself, from flooring to tiling and floor finishes. The single bedroom studio suites are designed for the young single or couple. An elegant bedroom and a well-appointed master bathroom form a private zone within a private haven. The expansive 6,000 sq ft rooftop triplex penthouses with private pools overlooking the city skyline make a clear statement about how international living standards are finding a new habitat in the heart of Kuala Lumpur.


The CBD KLCC is the most highly sought-after corporate address for multinationals and global giants. St Mary is sited on the last plot of prime land in the CBD and is within walking


distance of nightspots, restaurants, iconic shopping centres of Suria KLCC and Pavilion KL as well as 5-star hotels. The development is extremely well connected with a monorail station, road access and easy reach of public transport. St Mary is also in close proximity to international schools and universities, embassies and medical centres. But the best part is that even though St Mary is located in the heart of the CBD, the site itself is secluded, perched on a rare elevated land plot right next to the hip and happening Jalan Sultan Ismail. Residents on premium floors will enjoy superb views of the Petronas Twin Towers and the CBD skyline as well as the green lungs of the Bukit Nanas Nature Reserve and KLCC Park.


Although located in the middle of bustling Kuala Lumpur, St Mary is surrounded by lots of greenery. It has its own 1.2 acre park and nearby, the green lungs of the Bukit Nanas Nature Reserve and the KLCC Park. For recreation, there is a swimming pool and jacuzzi pavilion and a 2-storey residents-only clubhouse with gym and function rooms. There is a 34,400sq ft 2-storey retail

annex in Tower A offering hip bistros, boutiques and spa as well as a dedicated children’s playground. Residents can enjoy 5-star hotel-standard concierge service to help make modern urban life stress-free and super-efficient.


Homeowners and property investors will be buying into the sterling E&O brand promise of superior design and quality. Whether it is the external finishing or the internal fit-out, buyers are assured of the desirability of the St Mary project. The St Mary Residences development is part of the E&O luxury collection and this carries with it favourable market perception and acceptance. There is great potential for upside long term price growth and its relatively low price compared to luxury apartments in South East Asian capital cities makes it a very healthy investment proposition.

Previous page and above: 1. The skyskrapers of KL 2 - 6. St Mary Residences



The language of luxury in China “Chinese luxury consumption is projected to grow 18% annually from 2010 to 2015, doubling its share of the global market from 10% to 20% during the same period.” Yuval Atsmon, Partner, McKinsey & Co (Shanghai)

15,000 malls

“Capital Land’s President (the Singapore government real estate arm) in a recent interview said that there will be 15,000 malls operating in China in the next 5 years.” Paolo Bodo, President and CEO, Sixty Far East

“China is traditionally a ‘nation of savers’ but…this vast and ever increasing reserve of savings is on the verge of being liberated on some well-deserved selfindulgence.” David Hughes, Barclays

“Apple makes more profit foot by foot in its Shanghai store than in any other of its stores in the world.” Guy Salter, Deputy Chairman, Walpole*

“On average, Chinese consumers spend 2.7 hours per day online.” Marco Bizzarri, President & CEO, Bottega Veneta Paolo Bodo with Juliet Li

*Walpole Luxury in Greater China Report


INSIDERS Kevin Yeung

CREATING CHANGE Kevin Yeung talks about creating, a new online platform which he describes as ‘the Bloomberg of healthcare.’


evin Yeung is a busy man. With extensive charity and business responsibilities, it’s a wonder he has time to be interviewed, let alone set up a whole new company on the side. But he has, and of course he’s done it fantastically well. He tells Millionaireasia more about his latest project. What inspired you to set up FindDoc? I founded FindDoc with my college roommate, Dr Michael “Mike” Lim and our friend Ivan Ng. The idea came about after our friend, the late Mohan Mahtani, sustained a concussion and fell into a coma late last year. His loving family were well connected members of society but still found it incredibly difficult to find information on leading neurosurgeons to help him. They quickly realised that the sort of information they needed was not readily available. Mohan sadly passed away on October 23rd, 2011 and we set about finding a way to improve the accessibility of the information that could have saved his life. Tell us about your team. I am very proud of our world class team! They are top graduates from Stanford, Wharton, Cornell, Rhode Island School of Design, NYU, UNH and other leading schools. They are also leaders and experts in specific areas. For example, Ivan is a mobile veteran and leads our operations, while Albert, who was Woody Allen’s protégé leads our art direction. Johnson, a former head of Motorola’s Greater China business works closely with KC who previously

Left: The FindDoc team Right: Kevin Yeung, seated left with Michael Lim



Jordan Belford

worked for Boeing’s Information Solutions division and devoted his early career to meeting the complex challenges faced by the United States Government. They are supported by out talented team of technologists. Mike serves as our medical expert but unlike the rest of team he is not full time as he is also the director of neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins. I guess I am their boss. As a teenager, I was raised in the United States by my uncle and aunt,

who were both leading physicians so I fully appreciate the importance of effective healthcare. My mentor was the late Dr. Robert Fund who was the Founding Chairman for UNICEF so I’ve had a lifelong passion for helping people and serve as Chairman of the United Nations World Food Programme. I also founded Feeding Hong Kong which serves over 25 local foodbanks and I also serve UNICEF as a board member.

I’ve had a lifelong passion for helping people and serve as Chairman of the United Nations World Food Programme. 77

INSIDERS Kevin Yeung

Healthcare is always personal and patients want to learn as much information about doctors and their practices as they can. How did you set about starting the system? With a blank sheet of paper. We were determined to create an uncompromised class leading system, one that would make Mohan proud! FindDoc was created thanks to the generous help of many leading doctors, their nurses and other medical consultants who worked closely with us since inception to ensure that our team fully understood their needs and requirements as well as those of the general public’s. It was important for us to get it right. Thanks to them, I think we did. So how does it work? To use our service, patients visit FindDoc’s website or use our free mobile applications and enter their location, insurance plans, and/or the specialty of the medical practitioner they wish to visit. FindDoc then displays physicians’ schedules in real-time, along with their credentials in order to help patients select a suitable medical practitioner that best fits their needs. Patients simply select a time slot and complete a brief three-step booking process to secure an appointment. FindDoc then sends reminders to help patients remember to attend their appointments.


What’s the response been like so far? The response from the community has been fantastic! We have only just started to quietly share our service but already the enthusiasm has been overwhelming. We have been referred to many organizations such as as until now deaf people were unable to make doctor bookings as everything had to be done by telephone. Healthcare is always personal and patients want to learn as much information about doctors and their practices as they can. A question we like to ask is: would you purchase a stock that you knew nothing about except its name and that your friend said was good? Probably not. So why would you take your daughter to a doctor you knew nothing about? Interestingly, because of the informative nature of our website, what we also learned was that FindDoc created the “informed referral” as people can now refer trusted doctors to their friends with insightful and relevant information and not just a comment and a telephone number. Patients want to find doctors and doctors hope that patients find them. In the past, to get attention on the web, doctors would have to set up and also maintain costly individual practice websites which were immediately lost in cyberspace as they could never generate sufficient traffic to make them relevant. We solve this problem once and for all by having doctors list with us and for us to draw in patients to find them on one intuitive site. Our AskDoc videos allow our users to ask doctors health related questions and our team identifies qualified doctors to answer them in a video format. In addition to answering the questions, it allows users to get a feel of how a consultation would be with the featured doctors. Lastly, we just won 1st prize for Hong Kong’s City App Award 2012 from the Government of HKSAR.


ONLY US$199*


* Certain blackout periods apply. Offer valid throughout 2012 only. Refundable upon purchase.

Terms and conditions apply

ng 12 ni 20 pe r O me m Su

Choose a second home lifestyle investment in a private pool villa, designer boutique resort, island retreat or urban-style condominium As one of Asia’s leading development brands we offer: § Shared ownership from US $19,000

Absolute Bangla Suites, Phuket

The Beach Samui in Partnership with Yoo

Absolute Nakalay Beach Resort, Phuket

Absolute Twin Sands, Phuket

§ Whole ownership from US $190,000 † ng 12 ni 20 pe r O me m Su

§ City style, beach and private island resorts § World leading design § Great optional rental program § Excellent re-sale options § Access to Absolute’s extended collection of resorts worldwide § Assurance of buying into one of Asia’s leading lifestyle development brands

To experience our Thailand resort collection contact a dedicated member of the Absolute World Group team

§ Finance options available or register online at

§ Fully furnished and fully managed resorts







Hong Kong




Koh Samui









INTERVIEW Jordan Belford

Getting rich is so easy. It really is. There is only one way to do it. Quickly.


INSIDERS Jordan Belfort


THE WOLF Millionaireasia scores an exclusive one-on-one with former enfant terrible of Wall Street. By Dominique Afacan


he Wolf of Wall Street, or Jordan Belfort, was once a high-flying, multi-millionaire stockbroker with his own brokerage firm, Stratton Oakmont. In his early 30s, he was earning more then US$50m a year and living a life of total excess. The first thing he bought with his fortune was a white Ferrari ‘because I saw Don Johnson driving one in Miami Vice.’ He followed up with a yacht, a helicopter, then a private jet. You name it, Jordan bought it, drank it or snorted it. But of course, what goes up must come down, and Jordan came down with a bang in 1991, pleading guilty to 10 counts of securities fraud and money laundering – and was swiftly banged up for 22 months. That was all a long time ago though. He has since written his book The Wolf of Wall Street – currently being made into a film with Leo DiCaprio playing the lead, and has started a comeback career as a motivational speaker. This is clearly a man who can bounce back from the depths. In Hong Kong awaiting press interviews, Jordan is sitting in the club lounge at the Four Seasons, sipping on orange juice and talking at a million miles an hour. He

has an open, honest face, which presumably aided him in his murkier past and is looking remarkably clean-cut in chinos and a polo shirt. Happily, he’s not afraid to tell all about a past that has seen him in jail, on drugs and committing fraud on a colossal scale. First things first though, how on earth is he still alive? Jordan answers the first question without a flinch. ‘I was a pretty responsible drug addict, I mixed my drugs well. Unfortunately the human body is an amazing machine. You can push it to its limits without anything happening, but then you cross that line and push it that 1% too far. I got lucky – people who used far less than me shot their lights out.’ Jordan has now been sober for 15 years, and looks like any other healthy 40 something, possibly better – even if he does say so himself. ‘I look pretty good considering what I’ve been though! How many brain cells did I kill? I have enough left thank God. When I finally got sober I felt so done with it. I looked back at the whole thing and couldn’t find one memory that I thought was better because I was high. Lots of people romanticise about past drug use. I don’t. It was awful. My whole life revolved around it. When I got



Jordan Belfort

Learn to focus on where you want to go versus what you are afraid of. If you focus on the problems, you’ll crash into them. There’s no mystery. sober I saw the wreckage from the past and I prayed that my mistakes wouldn’t come back to haunt me.’ The mistakes he made, however, only happened after enormous selfmade success. The son of poor parents, Jordan built his fortune entirely from scratch, using an entrepreneurial savvy he was clearly born with. He talks about money as though it grows on trees. For him, the formula is simple. ‘Getting rich is so easy. It really is. There is only one way to do it. Quickly. Typically you work, you work, you work, and you don’t get anywhere – until all of a sudden, bam! The money starts pouring in. It’s like an overnight success after years of hard work. In those years before, you are lining up the elements of success. If you have these elements sorted, you can’t fail to get rich.’ It’s this entrepreneurial spirit that Jordan is capitalising on post-downfall. He is now a motivational speaker and private consultant who teaches individuals and businesses how to achieve massive success – ethically. And it seems to be serving him well. As he explains; ‘I can capture the attention of a room like nobody else because of my story. I do coaching for the biggest companies in the world – Virgin, Goldman Sachs, Semantec whoever, and I have their attention. People know I am the real deal. If I was to hide from the mistakes I’ve made, it would be different. But I put it out there and explain it all. I’m proud of what I’ve been able to do. I’m proud that I was able to take what happened and use it as a swing board to be who I am today.’ So is it working? Are people really becoming millionaires as a result of listening to The Wolf? How can it be that easy? Jordan explains a common


setback for wannabe millionaires. ‘The problem is that people have limiting beliefs. I teach people how to get themselves into the right state to close, to get into a peak state at the right moments. I had my own limited beliefs about my past when I got out of jail. But then I realised that my past was not haunting me, it was actually my greatest asset. I also teach people

Jordan Belfort’s CV 1962 Born in the Bronx, NYC 1990 Sets up Stratton Oakmont 1997 Belfort’s 37m yacht sinks after he ignores the captain’s advice not to sail 1998 Belfort is indicted for securities fraud and money laundering 2012 Production begins for a film telling the story of his life

to have high standards. People aim too low. You need set points for every aspect of your life. Learn to focus on where you want to go versus what you are afraid of. If you focus on the problems, you’ll crash into them. You become a millionaire long before you get the first dollar in your pocket. There’s no mystery.’ So all this talk of closing and sales and making millions – is it not leading Jordan down that same old path to greed and excess? Apparently not. And again, that earnest, open face explains; ‘People have some misconceptions about the difference between greed and ambition. In truth greed is bad and ambition is good. Ambition is about going out there and having a vision, and giving value and learning how to monetise that value. Greed is about making as much as you can as fast as you can and not caring about who gets hurt along the way. You need to have some ethics and integrity for it to work.’ A PR appears at his side to tell him the interview slot is over but Jordan is keen to continue. Eager to prove he has changed. ‘I do a lot of things now, a lot of charity work. People look at me and think, wow, this guy has come back from a terrible place, maybe I can do the same. I do a lot of charity work all over the world now, I sit in front of 40 or 50 kids and I can look them in the eye and say I have been there – it gives me the ability to serve as an inspiration. How do you place a value on that?’ With that final snippet, he finally settles back in his chair, drains his orange juice and looks relaxed, pleased with himself. His PRs come and hurry him along. All smiles, apologies and charming goodbyes – it’s incredibly easy to want this wolf to succeed once more.


INSIDERS Simon Berry

HOW I MAKE IT WORK Simon Berry, the Chairman of Britain’s oldest wine merchants explains how constant change and innovation has brought international success. Words by Catherine Shaw


ransforming a family business into a successful modern enterprise is challenging enough without the weight of 310 years of distinguished history added to the equation. For many, it would have been tempting to keep doing what had always proved successful; that is, serving a privileged slice of society fine wines in suitably historic premises on St James’s Street in London, a shop Berry Bros & Rudd (BBR) still occupies today. But its current chairman, Simon Berry, says that by the early 1990s it was clear that BBR’s traditional profile represented as much an obstacle as an advantage in the wine business because so many people assumed they were old -fashioned. “We had a shop front that if it could talk would have said ‘go away’,” he admits. “It was intimidating and if you were not wearing a pin stripe suit or couldn’t pronounce things you thought you would be sent away. But that wasn’t what we were about. It was a dilemma because we couldn’t change the shop – that wouldn’t be allowed because of conservation restrictions Left: Simon Berry, Chairman of Berry Bros & Rudd



Simon Berry

We had a shop front that if it could talk would have said go away. It was intimidating and if you were not wearing a pinstripe suit or couldn’t pronounce things you thought you would be sent away. – but behind that we had fantastic staff precisely to help those who didn’t know anything about wine. You need to know your wine when shopping at a supermarket but buying from us is all about getting expert help.” Salvation came in the unlikely form of winning a bid to open a wine shop at London’s Heathrow airport. “I saw this as a chance to reinvent ourselves,” explains Berry. “We have always had a philosophy that the wine merchant should be the closest link between those who make wines and the people who drink them so we realised it wasn’t important what we looked like at Heathrow but who we had working there.” The airport concession taught a valuable lesson, says Berry. “We thought we would sell to English businessmen travelling abroad but it was the opposite – most had never seen the shop in St James’s Street and we quickly discovered that the world was full of people fascinated by wine. Afterwards we went on to open in Hong Kong, Dublin and then a bit later in Tokyo. Our website also came out of this experience.” The company’s online presence proved an inspired move drawing even more new customers thanks to early investment in an easy-to-use interface with something for everyone from basic information, podcasts and recipe matching to highly specialised reports. “We got into websites very early, around 1994” says Berry. “We didn’t have a business plan, a budget or forecasts...but found it was the answer for people who were terrified about coming into the shop. In cyberspace no one sees you blush. And so that is what it did for us.” Berry says the website also gave them a unique insight into how people bought online. “We also found out that people only bought after the 7th time of coming to the website so we decided to give them 8 reasons to come back. We’ve drawn people in from different angles providing everyone from a novice to expert with a reason to keep coming back. We’ve gone from an intimidating Georgian shopfront to a website with security but anonymity. If you can be intelligent about


how you do it you can reinvent yourself.” “It is very simple actually,” he adds. “The heritage side comes from time and you can’t escape it. The trick is to understand what is at the centre of all that. The first thing you learn is that you only last if you keep changing. But it is important to know what you are at your core.” But awards and accolades (the website is the second-most visited wine site in the world) are no reason to sit back and relax or to move away completely from what you are at the core, observes Berry. “We have to continue to change and take into account that every culture has a different take on what we do – so we try to be as simple as possible and make sure that the people who want to have access to it, do. Some people take it all very seriously but there is nothing worse than a wine bore. It is about fun – after all it is only fermented grape juice.” Other recent business endeavours include collaboration with Dunhill’s flagship shop in HK’s Princes’ Building in Central which Berry describes as “a very good piece of shop design combining modern and tradition, so a perfect match,” and managing the Financial Times’ wine club. The latter has significantly raised BBR’s profile, especially in other parts of the world, notes Berry. “We didn’t realise quite what an impact our advertising through them would be – it has had much more of a result than we expected.” Despite these very modern developments, heritage remains the essence of BBR’s business. “Our team is completely focused,” says Berry. “We encourage different ideas but we are very clear about the ones we do and don’t do. For every one we do choose we reject about 10. Some we choose are not always money generating but we understand it is about supporting the rest of the business. This is the advantage of a family business; instead of thinking about profits next month you’re thinking about your children. It really is about a culture of passion.”

Wine to buy for: INVESTMENT: 2008 COS D’ESTOURNEL, ST. ESTÈPHE, BORDEAUX. “With Cos D’Estournel one arguably finds equal quality to a first growth for the price of a second growth wine.” DINNER PARTY: 2008 GROSVENOR BLANC DE BLANCS, RIDGEVIEW ESTATE. “The Sussex Downs in England continue to provide a rich seam of inspiration for the patriotic fizz drinker.” HOME: BERRYS’ EXTRA ORDINARY CLARET. “Our Extra Ordinary Claret is sourced from one of Bordeaux’s legendary figures, JeanMichel Cazes, proprietor of the great Ch. Lynch Bages.”

Right: 1. The storefront in London 2 & 3. Books and bottles from times gone by 4. History captured forever at BBR


Simon Berry

We had a shop front that if it could talk would have said go away. It was intimidating and if you were not wearing a pinstripe suit or couldn’t pronounce things you thought you would be sent away. – but behind that we had fantastic staff precisely to help those who didn’t know anything about wine. You need to know your wine when shopping at a supermarket but buying from us is all about getting expert help.” Salvation came in the unlikely form of winning a bid to open a wine shop at London’s Heathrow airport. “I saw this as a chance to reinvent ourselves,” explains Berry. “We have always had a philosophy that the wine merchant should be the closest link between those who make wines and the people who drink them so we realised it wasn’t important what we looked like at Heathrow but who we had working there.” The airport concession taught a valuable lesson, says Berry. “We thought we would sell to English businessmen travelling abroad but it was the opposite – most had never seen the shop in St James’s Street and we quickly discovered that the world was full of people fascinated by wine. Afterwards we went on to open in Hong Kong, Dublin and then a bit later in Tokyo. Our website also came out of this experience.” The company’s online presence proved an inspired move drawing even more new customers thanks to early investment in an easy-to-use interface with something for everyone from basic information, podcasts and recipe matching to highly specialised reports. “We got into websites very early, around 1994” says Berry. “We didn’t have a business plan, a budget or forecasts...but found it was the answer for people who were terrified about coming into the shop. In cyberspace no one sees you blush. And so that is what it did for us.” Berry says the website also gave them a unique insight into how people bought online. “We also found out that people only bought after the 7th time of coming to the website so we decided to give them 8 reasons to come back. We’ve drawn people in from different angles providing everyone from a novice to expert with a reason to keep coming back. We’ve gone from an intimidating Georgian shopfront to a website with security but anonymity. If you can be intelligent about


how you do it you can reinvent yourself.” “It is very simple actually,” he adds. “The heritage side comes from time and you can’t escape it. The trick is to understand what is at the centre of all that. The first thing you learn is that you only last if you keep changing. But it is important to know what you are at your core.” But awards and accolades (the website is the second-most visited wine site in the world) are no reason to sit back and relax or to move away completely from what you are at the core, observes Berry. “We have to continue to change and take into account that every culture has a different take on what we do – so we try to be as simple as possible and make sure that the people who want to have access to it, do. Some people take it all very seriously but there is nothing worse than a wine bore. It is about fun – after all it is only fermented grape juice.” Other recent business endeavours include collaboration with Dunhill’s flagship shop in HK’s Princes’ Building in Central which Berry describes as “a very good piece of shop design combining modern and tradition, so a perfect match,” and managing the Financial Times’ wine club. The latter has significantly raised BBR’s profile, especially in other parts of the world, notes Berry. “We didn’t realise quite what an impact our advertising through them would be – it has had much more of a result than we expected.” Despite these very modern developments, heritage remains the essence of BBR’s business. “Our team is completely focused,” says Berry. “We encourage different ideas but we are very clear about the ones we do and don’t do. For every one we do choose we reject about 10. Some we choose are not always money generating but we understand it is about supporting the rest of the business. This is the advantage of a family business; instead of thinking about profits next month you’re thinking about your children. It really is about a culture of passion.”

Wine to buy for: INVESTMENT: 2008 COS D’ESTOURNEL, ST. ESTÈPHE, BORDEAUX. “With Cos D’Estournel one arguably finds equal quality to a first growth for the price of a second growth wine.” DINNER PARTY: 2008 GROSVENOR BLANC DE BLANCS, RIDGEVIEW ESTATE. “The Sussex Downs in England continue to provide a rich seam of inspiration for the patriotic fizz drinker.” HOME: BERRYS’ EXTRA ORDINARY CLARET. “Our Extra Ordinary Claret is sourced from one of Bordeaux’s legendary figures, JeanMichel Cazes, proprietor of the great Ch. Lynch Bages.”

Right: 1. The storefront in London 2 & 3. Books and bottles from times gone by 4. History captured forever at BBR


Backes and Strauss

STEPPING STONES Vartkess Knadjian of Backes and Strauss summarises his unusual road to success.


ackes and Strauss, the oldest diamond company in the world creates opulent diamond-set watches, currently making waves in Asia. Current CEO Vartkess Knadjian, explains here how he climbed the ladder to success with this sophisticated brand.

Family ‘I was born in Ethiopia to Armenian parents. My father studied at the Ecole d’horlogerie in Geneva and returned to Ethiopia in 1943 where he set up a watch shop with Haile Selassie as the main customer. Selassie was a huge watch fan and used to give watches to any foreign heads of state he had visiting. He also used to give the top graduate of every high school an Omega watch to encourage education. As a child I used to go to my Dad’s workshop regularly – I remember it vividly. And the palace, of course. I remember once we got a call saying Charles de Gaulle was visiting Ethiopia with his wife and Selassie wanted to give her a watch. So we went to the palace with our collection for him to choose from. It was incredibly exciting.’


Education ‘When I was 12 I was sent to school in England. After that I got into the London School of Economics and graduated in 1976. By then there was no chance of going back to Ethiopia because of the military revolution. So I had to stay and find myself a job. A family friend suggested I try Backes and Strauss, which I joined when it was based in Hatton Garden. I’ll never forget my first day – lots of my friends had gone into banking and here I was amidst all this glamour!’

Opportunity ‘After the war Backes and Strauss had lost a lot of ground so when I joined, it was a question of rebuilding the business. I happened to be in the right place at the right time with the right people next to me. Benjamin Bonas, the owner at the time, was a visionary with a very international outlook. He was very much my mentor. Over the next few years we opened four more offices and in 1982 I headed the Antwerp office. In 2000 I became the CEO and in 2003 an opportunity arose for a management buy-out. I took it, but with the mind of leveraging the heritage of the company and creating a consumer brand.

Vartkess’ Top Three Watches The Imperial ‘This watch uses lime coloured diamonds. These are very rare and very valuable and this model has 48 stones in it. When you cut coloured diamonds, if you don’t adhere to the proper angles, you lose the colour. So it was a long process. We only made one piece and sold it in two hours to a Japanese customer.’ The Piccadilly Prince ‘This uses very complicated tapered baguette diamonds. In the space of the dial you have 380 of them. They have all been individually polished to be set invisibly into the dial.’ The Royal Berkeley ‘We sold the first model to an existing customer who came to me to see if we could make a diamond bracelet from baguettes to go with his watch. I told him baguettes wouldn’t be ideal for that and showed him the Royal Berkeley instead. He tried it on and bought it immediately.’

I’ll never forget my first day – lots of my friends had gone into banking and here I was amidst all this glamour!’

Collaboration ‘I had a very good relationship with Franck Muller and had seen how he had successfully branded himself in a very short period of time. The Swiss watch producers had been very successful in communicating the craftsmanship and precision work that goes into watch making. This contrasted with the inability of the diamond manufacturers to talk about the amazing skills required to polish diamonds – imagine all 57 facets are polished by hand and sometimes we are talking of diamonds less than one mm! We both came to the conclusion that we should create a product that combined the skills and craftsmanship of fine watch-making and diamond polishing. In 2006 we entered into a strategic partnership and launched

the brand with the first collection of Regent, Berkeley and Piccadilly watches.’

Expansion One of the major incentives to work together with Franck Muller was to take advantage of the manufacturing capabilities. All our products are crafted within the group so we don’t experience delays or bottlenecks. We have been present in SE Asia since the beginning of 2011 and are delighted with the reception of our collection. Through our presence in Harrods we had already monitored that the Chinese consumer had an appreciation for Backes & Strauss watches. Together with our partners Sincere Brand Management we look forward to raising the profile of the brand in the coming years.



Standard Chartered

WEATHERING THE STORM In these uncertain times, it’s time for back-to-basics strategies and long-term thinking, says Standard Chartered Bank.


f there is one predictable thing about the business cycle, it’s the fact that what goes up must come down. Economic downturns, as much as growth and success, are part and parcel of the financial evolution, and they need to be anticipated and managed with foresight and prudence. The 2008-2009 financial tsunami continues to send shockwaves across developed countries, established companies and investment portfolios of high net worth individuals (HNWIs). America’s unresolved credit issues and a debt crisis in Europe continue to dominate the headlines. Asia remains a bright spot, although it has cooled and growth rates have moderated. In all, there are still increased uncertainties, greater volatility and heightened risk aversion across financial markets. “We have not changed our view of the world. As before, we remain bullish about emerging economies and cautious about the West in the near-term. But the downside risks have increased significantly,” commented Shayne Nelson, CEO of Standard Chartered Private Bank.


For HNWIs living in Asia, how can the risks be mitigated and what can be done to respond to the impending tides of change? Here, back-to-basics strategies come into play as investment ideas and products are kept simple.


“Investors have been whipsawed by a repertoire of highly complicated and leveraged structured products during the 2008-2009 market melt-down. Many wealthy individuals saw a substantial part of their wealth eradicated during the crisis. As a result, risk levels have generally gone down; clients seek more transparent products and maintain a higher cash ratio,” Shayne observed. “They are now less prone to using complex structures. Principal protection (be it 100% or partial) has become a key and much sought-after feature in structured products and solutions.” Overall, heightened risk aversion and a search for safe havens may be the initial response, but Shayne added that asset re-allocation towards emerging economies may be the eventual outcome. In addition to the adjustments of asset allocation, investors are likely to increase cash ratios, closely monitor positions and look for asset classes that are not correlated with equity markets. For Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs), cash management is a top priority, particularly during economic uncertainties. Som Subroto, Global Head of SME Banking said, “It all comes down to cash flow forecasting. Firstly, know what you have in terms of liquidity and where it is sitting. Then assess what you will need; in which currency, where you need it, and work backwards from that.”

Companies should focus on improving their working capital cycle and needs by better managing clients and supplier relations. By working with a cash management specialist or bank for trade and cash management solutions, this will help to speed up collection, lengthen account payment and reduce transactional cost.


In less than favourable economic conditions, a reflexive action by many investors and business owners is to reduce their investments on both personal and corporate fronts. Planning strategically and thinking long-term are crucial, yet often overlooked attitudes. ”Investors need to stay rational, avoid emotional investing and choose their advisors well,” said Shayne. “One size doesn’t fit all: know yourself and your life objectives, needs, emotions and triggers; wealth management is similar to life management. Lastly, choose your bank well. The bank can be a solid partner that stands by your side in difficult times and assists you in capturing future opportunities,” he added. Business owners may be tempted to indiscriminately reduce headcount to save costs, or move away from their core competencies into new areas of business in the hope of quick, new revenue opportunities. As a result, some companies are unable to meet their

Som Subroto, Global Head SME Banking and Shayne Nelson, CEO, Standard Chartered Private Bank

business commitments due to a lack of manpower or end up doing more harm to their balance sheet as they navigate unfamiliar business areas. A more sustainable solution requires a long-term, strategic approach across business and investment fundamentals.


• Practising sound, value-based financial management. Emphasise cash flow and strong balance sheets, especially during good times. • Taking the opportunity of a downturn to strengthen your current positions. Develop a keen understanding of your core competencies. This will enable you to better seek out relevant markets and maximise growth opportunities. • Balancing between cost control and investment for the future. Focus on gaining operational efficiency and adopt a continuous improvement mind-set; look into product or service innovations that are market-leading


Shayne explained, “Banks must stay side by side with their clients to navigate successfully through the crisis. In our experience, this is particularly relevant for business owners. Research teams, product specialists, relationship

managers and management must provide constant communication on market and portfolio updates. Banks must also vigilantly monitor client positions, and work closely with clients to review their portfolios and position these tactically to the market conditions. In fact, it was during the financial crisis that Standard Chartered Private Bank established itself, recording nearly 70% growth in assets from 2008-2010. We also won the Outstanding Private Bank in Asia Pacific award at the annual Private Banker International Global Awards for three years during that same period.” It is these times, Shayne added, that allow banks and their clients a unique opportunity to deepen their relationship. Som said, “Standard Chartered remained ‘open for business’ during the recent financial crisis and demonstrated our long-term commitment to SMEs by partnering with several governments to ensure a continued flow of credit; lending to SMEs was up 38% in the first half of 2011. SMEs can also look to their banking partner for yield enhancement solutions. Standard Chartered Bank provides access to investment expertise through a team of experts; higher yielding solutions to maximise returns and preferential pricing on higher volumes for better value.”

Standard Chartered Bank provides access to investment expertise through a team of experts; higher yielding solutions to maximise returns and preferential pricing on higher volumes for better value.

By adopting a holistic, longterm view of their relationship and by undertaking a comprehensive assessment of their clients’ risks as well as assets – both personal and corporate – banks will be able to take calculated risks to support their clients’ financing needs, offering them stability through bad times and allowing them to grab opportunities and position themselves for the next upward cycle. In this regard, Standard Chartered Private Bank leverages its universal bank model and collaborates closely with SME Banking and other parts of the bank to help clients navigate through uncertain times in a seamless manner. Economic downturns may be inevitable but with planning, foresight and the right banking partners, company owners, investors and HWNIs can ride through and even flourish during the tough times.


Inspiration TAILOR MADE We went in search of the true meaning of ‘bespoke’ and found four tailors specialising in this artisanal craft. By Sam Growdon


rom the officers in Napoleon Bonaparte’s French army to Hollywood celebrities walking the red carpet, men have been wearing suits for over 400 hundred years. Fashions come and go and the styling of suits changes with each season – one button, skinny fit, thicker lapel, longer length – but what leaves a lasting impression is a well-fitted and individually crafted suit. While Hong Kong is famous for its tailors and made-to-measure suits, it’s uncommon to find a truly bespoke or fully custom-made suit. The former is a suit made to order using an existing, standard-sized pattern that is then adjusted for the individual customer. Bespoke, however, is the artisanal craft of creating a suit from scratch without an existing pattern. With so many ready-to-wear, high quality designer suits to choose from, bespoke suits have lost some popularity

“If you are out to describe the truth, leave elegance to the tailor.” Albert Einstein




3 4

in recent years. Buying a suit off-therack might be convenient and satisfy the sense of instant gratification but these mass-produced suits are made to fit an industry-standard body shape and are constructed according to the styling of the designer. While it is true that you can have a designer suit tailored, which gives you a nip and tuck here and there, altering the length or taking in the arm seam, it will never be drawn, cut or sewn specifically for your body as bespoke will. Having a fully custom-made suit made can hide a multitude of physical flaws, when one buys readyto-wear we often find men buying a larger jacket to accommodate a wider mid-section, but this means over-sized shoulders, arms being too wide and the length being too long. A custom suit will give a “little extra” around the waist but will keep the shoulders, sleeves and length in proportion. Alignment and posture also affects the way a suit fits. A good tailor will not only take length and width measurements but a diagonal measurement across the body to fit slouching or sloping shoulders and adjust the type of shoulder to create the perfect silhouette. Bespoke suiting also allows the customer to personalise, choosing a specific lining colour, button hole or pocket pacement or type of buttons – all the small details that make a suit unique and lend that extra exclusivity to your look. The art of a bespoke suit is a true collaboration between yourself and the tailor, As


your relationship grows so can your signature style making you the design maestro of your own wardrobe. Millionaireasia found five Hong Kong tailors specialising in bespoke menswear and met the men behind the tape measure and needle.

Ascot Chang

Famous for their shirts and with 14 stores in eight cities across Asia and the US, The House of Ascot Chang merges history and tradition with a growing need for creating contemporary, bespoke shirts for the modern man. When visiting any of the stores you will have at least 20 collar and cuff styles to choose from, 24 monogram styles and 30 monogram tread colours, boasting style combinations that are limited only to your imagination. Your individual quirks in fit, posture and shape will be discussed and a personalised pattern will be made for you. All fabrics are preshrunk before being cut and the ageold saying “it’s all in the detail” has never been truer than in the hand-sewn single-needle French seams which uses 22 stiches per inch and Japanese Mother-of pearl buttons. With a list of client that includes big names like US treasury secretary Timothy Geithner and French President Nicolas Sarkozy and you’ll be sure to find yourself in good company when wearing an Ascot Chang bespoke shirt or suit. Shop 130, Prince’s Building, Central, Hong Kong Tel: 852-2523-3663

Bespoke is the artisanal craft of creating a suit from scratch without an existing pattern. W.W. Chan & Sons

A huge sign on Nathan road directs you to W.W Chan & Sons. The company has been here for 48 years and is run by Patrick Chu. Passionate and particular about tailoring and the work that he has been doing for almost 30 years with the Chang family, he continues


suit ensuring that time is not wasted for future versions. Feel like splashing out? Try a suit in Vicuna starting at HK$190,000. A2, 2/F., Burlington House, 94 Nathan Road, Kowloon Tel: 2366 9738 5 6

W.W. Chan’s Shanghai lineage of tailoring. He keeps a “high end/low volume business model” making sure that even in these modern times of fast factories the only machine that Chan & Sons use is a straight sewing machine. Everything else is handcrafted, allowing for the fabric to be rolled and sculptured around the natural curves of the body. Each suit they make takes 55 hours and between one week and 10 days. Although Chu is aware of fashion trends and the need for contemporary styles he will not encourage a style that doesn’t look good on his customer. Each one has their own envelope with their unique paper pattern, any adjustment made on the suit at a fitting is then made on the paper pattern as well, highlighting the personalised detail of each client and

H. Baroman LTD

Kenny H.W Kwa is an enthusiastic tailor and runs H. Baroman with heaps of heart and soul. In fact, that’s what sets him apart from other tailors, “Tailors are artists, it’s a feeling, it’s the heart that goes into it. If the weather is good, the tailor works harder, like all artists.” It’s important to Kwa to teach people how to dress well with good suits. He doesn’t want to become a commercial or massproduced business, he just wants to keep his high-class customer happy. Kwa was started by Mr. Hoi over 70 years ago. Mr Hoi, who could count high-powered names such as John F Kennedy, Michael Todd and Edward G. Robinson on his client list, began in Shanghai like, it seems, all the good tailors in HK. Kwa continues the legacy of Mr. Hoi, counting Stanley Ho, Anthony Leung and Joseph Fong on his list. “This is my life, 33 years already for one company, no bank holidays only New Years Day. But it’s fair, I have a lot of good friends and have good relationships in Hong Kong, people can call me 24 hours a day. It’s the heart for this business, for every tailor like myself, it’s not about commercial success. Work hard, do good work, and results will follow.” Shop 203-204, Second Floor, The Galleria, 9 Queen’s road Central Tel: 2523 6845

A-Man Hing Cheong Co.

There’s a distinct sense of luxury on the mezzanine floor of the Mandarin Oriental, where A-Man Hing Cheong Co. (pronounced Arman) is located.

The masculine-looking store features dark wood shelves bearing fabrics of different colours and textures. Hours could be spent here debating which shirt, suit, tie combo is best. Y.K Poon is the Managing Director of this prestigious store, joining the company in 1954 at the age of 15. He explains that A-man’s designs are very classical and more conservative, they’re moulded on the old-English style suit like on Saville Row, mainly for lawyers and investment bankers. He explains how the “grey or blue, single breasted, two buttoned, Englishstyle suit is always in fashion, it’s timeless fashion”. Poon talks about the finer features of the Englishstyle handmade suit, pulling out an unfinished example. “If you can see the stitching under the collar it’s canvassed (with horse hair) and the canvas is separate to the fabric, it’s not glued”, he continues explaining that “Designer suits are mostly glued, and after dry cleaning a few times the jacket will start to bubble”. Poon is definitely a man who knows what he is talking about and is very specific about English styling, not recommended if you’d like a softer European style. M/F, Mandarin Oriental Hotel, 5 Connaught Rd, Central, Tel: 2522-3336

By word of mouth GORDON YAO: Shop 116, The Royal Garden Hotel, 69 Mody Road, TST Tel: 2730 1545 WILLIAM YU: Room 1102-03 Sands Building, 17 Hankow Road, TST Tel: 2366 6637 IL SARTO: G/F, 18 Gilman’s Bazaar, Central, Tel: 2815 3336 RAJA FASHIONS: G/F 34-C Cameron Road, TST, TST, Tel: 2366 7624

Previous page: 1. Bespoke jacket at W.W. Chan This spread: 2 & 4. Kaleidoscope of fabrics at A-Man Hing Cheong Co. 3. Fabric books at W.W Chan 5. H. Baroman shop front 6. Choice of collars


STYLE INTERVIEW PROFILE Jordan Alfred Dunhill Belford

96 Millionaireasia



Suit yourself

Geared up and groomed on the streets of Hong Kong Shot by Steve Wong Styled by Christie Simpson

Grey stripe suit, shirt and belt – Ermenegildo Zegna Tie – Paul Smith Shoes – YSL i-pad holder – Tods Umbrella – Fox at The Armoury

Millionaireasia 97


INTERVIEW INSTYLE Jordan FashionBelford Shoot

Shirt and tie – Hugo Boss Waistcoat – Wooyoungmi at Harvey Nichols Jacket(over arm) and trousers – Paul Smith Watch – David Yurman Shoes - Tods Blue suit – Etro Shirt – Hugo Boss Red pocketscarf and tie – Drakes at The Armoury Shoes – Gucci



Feature Name

“The finest clothing made is a person’s skin, but, of course, society demands something more than this.” Mark Twain


INTERVIEW Jordan Belford

Dark grey suit – Paul Smith Shirt – Richard James at Harvey Nichols Tie – Gieves and Hawkes Belt – Ermenegildo Zegna Cufflinks – Shanghai Tang Shoes – Tods Umbrella – Fox at The Armoury Briefcase – Ludwig Reiter at The Armoury Opposite: Navy blue suit – Richard James at Harvey Nichols Shirt – Paul Smith Tie – Hugo Boss Shoes – Tods


SECTION INSPIRATION Feature Name Fashion Shoot


INSPIRATION INTERVIEW Jordan FashionBelford Shoot



suit – YSL FeatureGrey Name Shirt – Gieves and Hawkes Belt and shoes – Ermenegildo Zegna Watch – David Yurman Laptop case – Shanghai Tang Photographer Steve Wong at Stylist Christie Simpson Hair and makeup Denise Siobhan Toms Model Winfred at Calcarries

“Style is knowing who you are, what you want to say, and not giving a damn” Orson Welles




ALL MINE A very special collection from Mine to Mine


veryone knows that diamonds are a girl’s best friend, but even better they are currently an inflation-fighting commodity that makes for a fantastic investment (see feature on page 52). This latest collection from Mine to Mine by Roni N includes these two dazzling designs (see right). The elegant pendant (this page), handcrafted with diamonds and 18k white gold is something of a collector’s item, containing a total of 12.82 carats of exquisite natural round brilliant and pear shaped diamonds – all 707 of them! The necklace (main image) meanwhile,

features over 36 carats of brilliant round diamonds totalling an impressive 1818 pieces. The perfect accessory for a special occasion or to add the finishing touch to a knock-out dress. All of the pieces in this ‘Mine to Mine Private Collection’ are stunningly beautiful, a triumph of design and gemmological expertise. Merging influences from the east and west, the collection features dazzling colours, shapes and diamond combinations that result in timeless, classical jewellery. Handcrafted using diamonds from renowned South African mines, these one-of-a-kind pieces are the perfect gift – for a loved one, or maybe just for yourself.

Everyone knows that diamonds are a girl’s best friend but even better they are a fantastic investment 104

Roni Namdar - CEO & Head Designer




GOING COCO Highlights from the new Chanel Contrastes collection



1. Nuage de Glace – Black diamonds and onyx join mother-of-pearl rows in a frosty contrast of black and white. 2. Bague Ombre de Charme – Floral designs sparkle with diamonds on onyx. 3. Etoile du Nord – Mother-of-pearl and white opals sit around a central diamond baguette with pear and briolette cut moonstones. 4. Chanel’s Resort 2012 advertising campaign, shot in black and white, personally prepped and shot by Karl Lagerfeld.



omen think of all colours except the absence of colour. I have said that black has it all. White too. Their beauty is absolute. It is the perfect harmony.” So said the formidable Coco Chanel. If she were alive today she’d no doubt be pleased with the new Contrastes collection from the brand she gave life to. Sensual yet structured, feminine yet feisty, the collection is a sublime marriage of monochrome. Choose from the most elegant of earrings, gorgeous statement rings, brooches and more.

House of Chanel – a history

1883 Gabrielle (Coco) Chanel is born to single mother Jeanne Devolle in Samur, France

1913 Coco opens a hat shop in Paris 1926 Her first ‘little black dress’ is

created and revered by Vogue 1955 Chanel No. 5 becomes the world’s best-selling perfume. 1955 Coco Chanel dies 1983 Karl Lagerfeld starts work on a Chanel revival 2010 Keira Knightly becomes the





NEW JEWELS Introducing the new Millemoi collection from Forevermark.


recious gems are without question one of the most globally and historically renowned symbols of luxury, and none more so than diamonds. Of the brands associated with diamonds, none are more recognised than De Beers, which since its establishment in 1888, has grown to become the world leader in the exploration, mining and marketing of diamonds. And from the wealth of expertise and experience of De Beers’ Forevermark diamond brand, comes the iconic new collection, the Forevermark Millemoi Collection. Inspired by the diversity and glamour of modern women, Forevermark has created a collection that celebrates the individual and personal stories that make each woman the unique wife, mother and daughter they are. Their relentless efforts, aspirations and devotion have influenced the Forevermark


Millemoi Collection at its core. The name Millemoi stems from the Italian word ‘mille’, meaning thousand and the French word ‘moi’ meaning me; evoking the multiple layers that give each woman their identity. The range includes pendants, rings and earrings. Each piece has a spectacular Forevermark diamond, inscribed with a promise of beauty, rarity and responsible sourcing. Forevermark’s stunning jewellery has not escaped the notice of Hollywood’s most glamorous women, with signature pieces from the Forevermark Millemoi Collection cropping up on red carpets everywhere. Uma Thurman wore a Forevermark Millemoi cuff to the recent Independent Spirit Awards, while Alicia Keys donned Forevermark Millemoi drop earrings for a personal concert showcase. Li Na, Yasmin Le Bon and Michele Reis have also been photographed wearing magnificent pieces from the Millemoi range. In addition to their brand new collection, Forevermark is taking the jewellery

selection experience to the next innovative level. They have simultaneously announced the launch of My Forevermark Fitting – a virtual try-on experience that brings jewellery featuring Forevermark diamonds to life as they sparkle and move with the wearer in real time – all through their computer screen. My Forevermark Fitting is the first deployment of a 3D virtual try-on for jewellery. In this worldwide debut, users are able to see the earrings and pendants sparkle in the light and to see how the jewellery will move as they ‘wear’ it. “Not only does the experience reflect all the beauty of a Forevermark diamond; it is also a remarkable digital achievement to have jewellery moving with the wearer in real time,” says Forevermark’s CEO, Stephen Lussier. Using a webcam and the special Forevermark cut-outs, consumers can select all white gold or a combination of white, yellow and rose gold, as well as choosing the carat weight of the diamonds. When the try-on experience is activated, the Forevermark diamonds sparkle and the loops move to truly bring the Forevermark Millemoi jewellery alive.

Li Na

Uma Thurman

Andrea Riseborough

Forevermark’s stunning jewellery has not escaped the notice of Hollywood’s most glamorous women



These speakers priced at are built in 18-carat gold and weigh in at 215kg, with state-of-the-art audio quality. Limited numbers of bronze and silver designs are also available as well as bespoke diamond-encrusted versions.




This season’s most desirable new must-haves


This Gold Bike Crystal Edition from Danish company Aurumania is plated in 24-carat gold and adorned with more than 600 Swarovski crystals – the company logo is even inscribed in Swarovski Braille. They’re also super exclusive – only ten have been made.




GOLD SHOELACES Mr Kennedy’s shoelaces are handmade in the gold belt of Colombia in a small town called Quinchia. Each hand-woven lace takes around five to eight days to make and can be customised to fit your favourite pair of shoes. The 24-carat gold laces are


for a pair and will be hand delivered and laced for you anywhere in the world.


BACKGAMMON SET Coming in at around


this small backgammon board in English saddle leather is the perfect addition to a games room.

Dテ傍TLING SAFE A functional and stylish product with prices starting at Dテカttling safes are handmade to the highest standards in Germany using materials including 24-carat gold and calfskin. The craftsmanship is exquisite, from the saddler work to the intricate workings of the master locksmith.



ROYAL SALUTE Royal Salute’s Tribute to Honour is so rare that only one man in the world has tasted it – master blender Colin Scott. Introduced to pay homage to the oldest crown jewels in the British Isles: The Honours of Scotland and produced in collaboration with Garrard, the world’s oldest jeweller, the bottle is priced at




VERTU PHONE The Constellation Touch is the only sapphire crystal touch screen mobile in the world. Costing the phone features black alligator skin and diamonds. Owners of the phone also benefit from partnership services provided by Berry Brothers and Rudd and Protector Services Group.




FERRARI 458 SPIDER Ferrari’s first mid-rear engine hard-top convertible features a fully retractable aluminium lid that takes just 14 seconds to open


or close. Costing from the car is powered by Ferrari’s 570 CV 4,499 cc V8, named engine of the year in 2011, and can get from 0 to 100 km/h in less than 3.4 seconds.



Feature Name

PEARL CHOKER The Mustard Seed Workshop trains former substance abusers in Hong Kong to become artisans and helps break the poverty cycle. The company customises jewellery and specialises in pearl pieces. A pearl choker starts from around

HKD $280,000.

GLASHĂœTTE WATCH Designed to celebrate the Year of the Dragon, the new limited edition Senator Meissen Tourbillon Dragon features a porcelain hand-painted dial and a rose gold case. Price on request.




FACE THE MUSIC Celebrating 50 years of KEF, the brand behind the innovative speakers

“Of all art, music is the most indefinable and the most expressive, the most insubstantial and the most immediate, the most transitory and the most imperishable. Transformed to a dance of electrons along a wire, its ghost lives on.” KEF Founder Raymond Cooke OBE 1925-1995. Music lovers will already be familiar the KEF name. The brand,





KEF is founded pioneering the use of synthetic materials in the creation of superior speakers.

KEF is the first company to use computers in loudspeaker testing allowing the design of new and improved speakers.

The decade that sees the emergence of what will become KEF’s signature technology; the Uni-Q point source driver array.

Where to Buy KEF’s latest concept store is at Cubus, 2/F, Cubus, 1 Hoi Ping Road, Causeway Bay, Tel: 2877 1778 Tsim Sha Tsui: Shop 301-3, Star City Tel: 2693 3468 Central: 3/F, VC House, 4 On Lan Street, Central Tel: 2523 2528 118

famed for its premium quality speakers, was set up by Raymond Cooke, a British electrical engineer with the BBC who set about designing a speaker with superior acoustic quality. It seems he succeeded, as 50 years later – the brand is still making breakthroughs in sound production and its products are available in over 70 countries.

1990s KEF becomes a pioneer in home theatre and the Coda 7 speaker becomes KEF’s best seller.

NOW – The KHT2005 is launched, the first of the iconic ‘Egg’ series of home theatre speakers. The Blade – the world’s first single apparent source speaker is developed to universal acclaim. 119



BOTTLES OF BUBBLES Germany’s premium sparkling wine, Rotkäppchen-Mumm, heads east to Hong Kong’s S&D German Wine Room


ith its roots dating back to medieval Europe, RotkäppchenMumm is the most successful sparkling wine range in Germany. Now Hong Kong wine aficionados can try it for themselves – with two varitieties available at local distributors S&D wines. Choose from the popular Rotkäppchen or Geldermann, a top shelf sparkling wine targeting those with a Little Black Book S&D German Wines Room 3207, 32/F, Tower 6, The Gateway, 7-11 Canton Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon Tel +852 21178286,


scrupulous palate. Meaning ‘Little Red Riding Hood’ in German, Rotkäppchen-Mumm was founded in the 1800s. Formulated using classic base wines from various European wine-growing regions, Rotkäppchen’s individual characters include the fine and tangy Trocken (dry), the smooth favourite Halbtrocken (medium dry), the fresh Rosé Trocken, and Rotkäppchen Alkoholfrei, which is composed using de-alcoholised wines. The bottle-fermented Rotkäppchen (Black Label) catalogue features a very fine mousse from high-quality French base wines. A friend to the most discerning taste buds, Geldermann is RotkäppchenMumm’s premium sparkling wine and

Did you know? Germany’s annual per capita consumption of approximately four litres of sparkling wine is the highest in the world. has its origins in France’s Champagne region. Produced exclusively by traditional bottle-fermentation for almost 170 years, Geldermann was first crafted in French cellars, until it was moved to historic vaults in the German town of Breisach in 1925. Made from meticulously selected aged French base wines, Geldermann’s classic Brut is dry and elegant, while the dry Rosé has an extravagant and fruity spirit.



BACK IN TIME Glashütte creates a watch to mark a memorable decade


he seventies made a mark on the world unlike any other decade before or since; they were the years that linked a world hungry for change with unbridled and unprecedented opportunities. New, high-capacity aeroplanes made travel to far-off destinations possible, and technological advancement and sci-fi fantasies became fodder for a generation of expanding minds. The look of seventies art and design was heavily influenced by the changing world, and remains visible today in the striking artefacts of the time. Indeed the adventurous feeling of the decade soon shaped the less spectacular world of everyday objects. Cars, furniture and jewellery all took on a streamlined, softedged, aerodynamic appearance. What remains from the seventies is an unmistakable look and feel, captured in the icons and objects of the time. In a tribute to this unique decade and its broadening horizons, Glashütte Original has created a new masterpiece of German design and engineering – the Seventies Panorama Date. Glashütte Original is a name that has been synonymous with highquality watchmaking, precision and exquisite design for 165 years. Taking its name from the tiny town in which German watchmaking was born, Glashütte Original is one of the few brands that uses its own movements, in addition to holding 10 proprietary movement innovations. Every aspect of the Glashütte Original timepiece, from the smallest screw to the most complicated movement, is created


in their own manufactory, with most of the work being done by hand. Glashütte Original’s craftsmanship and attention to detail is renowned the world over as being second to none. Glashütte Original is debuting three new models that each represent a chic tribute to both German design and the traditions of mechanical watchmaking in Glashütte. With flowing curves of streamlined steel, the Seventies Panorama Date presents a distinctly seventies look and feel, and captures the spirit of the decade in a hip, iconic design.

Applied indexes and hands in white or rose gold frame the Glashütte Original Panorama Date. To fit the each wearer’s wrist perfectly, Glashütte Original has crafted a sleek four-link metal bracelet. Glashütte Original’s proven Calibre 39-47 automatic movement is clearly visible through the domed sapphire crystal case back. In honouring a decade of such advancement and optimism, Glashütte Original has created a perfect tribute to the character and style of the time. lover with an appreciation for timeless, iconic style, and the decade that changed it all.

Glashütte Original is a name that has been synonymous with high-quality watchmaking, precision and exquisite design for 165 years



Johnnie Walker

INTO THE BLUE Sultry, sensual and smoky, a drink of champions, Johnnie Walker Blue Label has been re-launched with new packaging.


t the end of the rainbow, there lies a blue bottle filled with wisps of smoke, layers of honey, spice, with accents of rich chocolate and rose petals, and capped with a luxuriously smooth finish and mellowness. Walk around the world and that elusive bottle of blue is found gracing the desks and shelves of the wealthy and successful, and being presented to potential clients as a gift of distinction. Known as Johnnie Walker Blue Label, the glass bottle lies in a blue box, caressed in lustrous blue silk, the mahogany coloured fluid resting within resembling liquid gold. The luxury whisky is the pinnacle blend from the House of Johnnie Walker, a brand that has long been recognised as the face of Scottish whisky, and has a heritage of close to 200 years. “Over the years the Walker family used coloured labels to differentiate their various products – most famously with Red Label and Black Label. We believe that, historically, they used Blue Labels to demarcate premium products within their business,” said Jonathan Driver, the global brand ambassador for Johnnie Walker Blue Label Blended Scotch Whisky. A respected expert in the luxury whisky industry, with nearly 20 years of experience in the field, he has an instrumental role in the development and positioning of the product, and has written extensively on the history of the Johnnie Walker brand and company. Appointed the global brand ambassador for Johnnie Walker since 2006, he is an unswerving ambassador for the brand.


Only one in 10,000 casks are deemed of sufficient character to deliver its remarkably smooth signature taste Johnnie Walker Blue Label is a commemoration of the first blend of Scotch whisky, the exceptional Old Highland Whisky that was created in 1867 by Alexander Walker and formed the base of Johnnie Walker’s business growth in the 19th century. Conceived by master blender, Jim Beveridge, the blue-blooded whisky perpetuates John Walker’s legacy of a religious devotion and commitment to making the world’s best whiskies. “It helped change the world’s understanding of luxury whisky and today, the same guiding principles continue to inspire our business. Only one in 10,000 casks are deemed of sufficient character to deliver its remarkably smooth signature taste – the pinnacle of the art of blending whisky

from the House of Johnnie Walker. Each rare whisky is handpicked by Jim, himself part of an unbroken blending heritage stretching back over 190 years. We believe that in the modern age, this is the epic achievement of today,” said Jonathan. This nonpareil bottle of blue is blended using only the most premium of young and old whiskies, drawn from a reserve of whiskies deemed the largest in the world, a reserve that traces its heritage back to nearly two centuries ago. Nestled within the heart of Johnnie Walker Blue Label, is the Royal Lochnagar, a rare single malt Scotch whisky with accents of malt, fruit and sometimes pine, said to be a favourite of the British royal family. The whiskies are handpicked for their rare and unique personalities, nurtured

and matured in oak, finally coming together in a sinuous weave of flavours to deliver the fully-fledged character of Johnnie Walker Blue Label – “deep richness and smoke, layers of honey and fruit and an incredibly smooth finish, a truly rare character,” Jonathan effused. The blue blood whisky comes in two editions, Johnnie Walker Blue Label King George V and The John Walker, each to mark a special occasion. Johnnie Walker Blue Label King George V was blended to observe the Royal Warrant bestowed upon the Walker family in 1934, as a stamp of their superior quality. Mixed into this blend is the Port Ellen, a particularly prized malt whose distillery no longer exists. The John Walker was a recent addition, created in tribute of Johnnie Walker’s founder, and came



Johnnie Walker


in single barrel batches of a mere 330 bottles. A rare blend of nine whiskies, such as those from Glen Albyn and Cambus distilleries, they are presented in bottles that are topped with individually numbered Baccarat crystal decanters, handcrafted and engraved by a master craftsman. The luxury blend with which people can celebrate their achievements, Johnnie Walker Blue Label has lately been introduced in a new look for the current century, in celebration of the original 19th century Johnnie Walker bottle, with its signature square shape, blue glass and thick glass base. Almost two decades after the launch of Johnnie Walker, the House of Johnnie Walker has unveiled a new look for its iconic luxury bottle. In celebration of the original 19th century Johnnie Walker bottle, the contemporary redesign features beautifully crafted

mizuwari or just neat, there is a whisky for every occasion. Johnnie Walker has created a remarkable portfolio of whiskies, a global business based on the appreciation of this fact by our consumers over nearly two hundred years,” said Jonathan. Worldwide, there has been a demand for Scotch whisky, especially in the Asian, Latin American and African markets, where they have developed a penchant for the super deluxe versions in particular, such as Johnnie Walker Blue Label. In Diageo’s first half financial results released earlier this year, it reported a 10% rise in organic net sales for Johnnie Walker, supplying nearly one third of Diageo’s overall sales growth. “The appeal of luxury whisky lies in the incredible heritage of brands like Johnnie Walker who will go deep into their reserves to create remarkable and

Almost two decades after the launch of Johnnie Walker, the House has unveiled a new look for its iconic luxury bottle details evoking both heritage and modernity and an ultra-thick glass base and side walls to frame the honey hued whisky inside. “There is something very resonant about the worldwide nature of the Johnnie Walker brands and Johnnie Walker Blue Label in particular and the characteristics of our modern consumer. A world view, an appreciation of the finer things in life, wherever in the world they are, a restlessness and ambition amongst many of our Johnnie Walker Blue Label consumers, has created a strong appeal for our Luxury business,” said Jonathan. “Whisky has more flavours than virtually any other type of drink. With a global market looking for drinks for different occasions, mixed, on the rocks,

unique blends from very rare stocks of whisky, hand crafted in small batches and delivering flavours that are not found in other whiskies,” he added. Increasingly, travellers are going luxe, especially with Asia’s robust sales performance of luxury goods across all product categories for the DFTR market, based on the Global Duty Free & Travel Retail Sales 2010 report by Generation Research. The sales of Scotch whisky grew by 18.2%, taking sixth place this year in the report’s top 25 product categories. This was an improvement from its seventh placement in 2009. “There is also growing recognition of the quality credentials of Scotch Whisky in Global Duty Free and Travel

Retail. Johnnie Walker has been at the forefront of tastings, education through Brand Ambassadors and a far greater prominence at the point of sale. Partnerships with F1 have created a new dynamism in this market,” said Jonathan. “Innovation projects such as the line extensions: Johnnie Walker Blue Label, King George V and Johnnie Walker Blue Label, the John Walker have also played a significant part in making the Scotch fixture a much more exciting and intriguing part of the overall Duty Free/ Travel Retail environment. This has encouraged a lot more premiumisation and trading up. Additionally whisky is a great gift and Johnnie Walker has capitalised on that through a constant stream of gift packaging and engraving projects,” he added. Diageo, the world’s leading premium drinks business, owns Johnnie Walker Blue Label. A global company that trades in more than 180 countries around the world, it has an impressive collection of beverage alcohol brands across spirits, wines, and beer categories. These brands include Johnnie Walker, Guinness, Smirnoff, J&B, Baileys, Cuervo, Tanqueray, Captain Morgan, Crown Royal, Beaulieu Vineyard and Sterling Vineyards wines. On Diageo’s future plans for Johnnie Walker Blue Label, Jonathan said, “The focus for the coming months will be on rolling out the new Johnnie Walker Blue Label bottle and pack. This is the platform for building the business in the coming years.” “What we have learnt over the last 10 years is that the incredibly sophisticated airport retail environment around the world needs a constant supply of new stories to excite and engage with the discerning international traveller. So there will be more and more activity around Johnnie Walker Blue Label and our key Airport Partners in the coming years.”

Previous page and left: 1. The new packaging 2 + 3. Johnathan Driver, global brand ambassador




Dominique Afacan asks flamboyant businessman John Hung to finish her sentences.


ohn Hung is a fourth generation Hong Kong resident with Chinese and Scottish ancestory. His career has seen him as chairman of Wheelock & Co and director of Wharf Holdings. In 2009 he was convicted of accepting an advantage to help with a membership application for the Jockey Club. He served 16 months in Stanley Prison which was where he began to write the recently released book about his life, Master of None. My biggest business success was taking the share price of Wharf Holdings from $6.95 to $43.50 in just two years. The worst mistake I ever made was my agreement to propose a candidate, under utmost good faith, for upgrade from a racing member to full membership in the Hong Kong Jockey Club. This friendly willingness to accommodate a friend led ironically to my incarceration. I wish I had invested more in selected properties outside Hong Kong in places like New Zealand or Australia for long term holding. I will never regret allowing my love of cricket to mould my character, from my inter-personal skills, to my leadership ability and my capabilities as a team player.

Buy John Hung’s book, Master of None at all good bookstores.


I regret not having developed my entrepreneurial skills at an earlier age instead of placing total reliance on institutional employment. My best trait is my power of persuasion and the total dedication on any job or venture that grabs my interest. I adore my wife Gail and my six children. The best piece of business advice I can give is to never say no to a proposition until it has been fully evaluated. Think yes first and try to get it done. Only when all avenues and possibilities have been exhausted should one reject the proposition at hand. My biggest extravagance was investing in the ownership of more racehorses than I really needed. I love Hong Kong because my family has been here since the 1850s and they are steeped in the culture of early Hong Kong. I find it almost impossible to find an alternative place that offers a wider variety of culinary delights, service efficiency and business opportunities. My hero is Nelson Mandela for everything he represents, especially his willingness to forgive. My life’s motto is to treat everyone with respect and compassion as I would expect others to treat me.

Millionaireasia Gold Rush  

Millionaireasia magazine