Welcome to the Good Life

For the newly rich in China maintaining a luxurious lifestyle is a strong indication that you are, essentially, killin’ it. From bougie yachting conventions to polo tournaments China’s one percent is attracting a host of European and Western brands that are eager to capitalize on the good life in a new market

Released on 1/5/2015

Credits

Director: Lauren Greenfield
Producer: Lauren Greenfield and Sandra Keats
Executive Producer: Frank Evers
Editor: Adam Parker

Director of Photography: Shana Hagan

Transcript

00:02
(upbeat music)
00:06
Luxury in China is not frivolous.
00:09
It's not superficial.
00:11
In China, only one percent would say
00:14
that luxury products are superficial pursuits.
00:17
Luxury is a tool of success on the battlefield of life.
00:29
I'm Delphine Lignières and I created So! Dalian
00:33
which is a boating event in the north of China.
00:36
In every of the event we are developing,
00:38
we are trying to bring lifestyle and to bring experience.
00:42
We have to show the customer what you can do on board.
00:47
How you can enjoy on board the fine things
00:49
like strawberries, champagne, caviar, cigars.
01:05
We have to remember, 30 years ago,
01:07
China was an incipient basketcase.
01:10
I mean it was total isolation.
01:11
Having a car was a luxury.
01:13
Everybody was on bicycle.
01:15
So going from complete isolation to huge transformation,
01:20
China is now the biggest market for all
01:21
the Western luxury brands.
01:23
The new generation now who haven't actually lived the life
01:27
of their parents want to discover something new.
01:46
When we started to develop the boating industry,
01:48
they were quite a challenge because some did not want
01:50
to face the sun or couldn't swim.
01:53
And that why the key was to bring them on the water.
01:56
And to offer them the opportunity
01:58
to discover the great excitement of sailing.
02:11
I tell all of my customers what is the difference
02:13
you have 500 million US, 600 million US.
02:17
There's a big difference, you have one million,
02:18
10 million or 100 million.
02:19
There's a great difference.
02:20
But there is no difference anymore you have 500 million
02:22
or 600 million, if that's the figure.
02:25
Enjoy your life.
02:34
We organise the first beach polo tournament in China.
02:37
Equestrian activities are considered as noble sports
02:41
so that's why it's attracting a lot of upper-class people.
02:45
The idea is to develop international communities and club.
02:49
You have the same values.
02:51
You feel the same things, actually.
02:53
Wherever you are from, you are from your same category.
02:58
(gentle piano music)
03:01
(vocalizing in foreign language)
03:18
Face is the currency of forward advancement.
03:21
Face is acknowledgement that other people give you
03:25
but is translated into getting them to do things for you.
03:29
And it's generated according to a very
03:31
opaque network of associations.
03:34
All those high-end activities in a way will help them
03:37
to do networking too because, never forget
03:40
that Chinese never disconnect in doing business.
03:44
That, like in every country, you want
03:47
to belong to the upper class.
03:50
That's what you aim to.
03:51
When you're working, your trying to do
03:52
your best to be on the top.
03:55
You show lifestyle, you show in which league
03:59
and which level you are playing.
04:00
I strongly believe this yachting will be booming.
04:05
It's just a question of time.
04:08
(energetic music)
04:10
The China market is the future of the luxury market.
04:12
And there are many people that say
04:15
that it's bound to tail off.
04:17
But, in my opinion, it's not going to tail off.
04:19
Money will not become something that is crude
04:23
because it is a meritocratic marker of success.
04:26
And one thing about the Chinese is they revel
04:28
in the comprique and the quantifiable.
04:32
To me, it's still a little bit of a mystery
04:34
what exactly the Chinese dream is.
04:36
I've asked my friends, I've asked my driver,
04:38
I've asked my assistants, I say,
04:40
what do you think this means?
04:41
I think it's a promise, it's a hope for everybody
04:45
to improve their lives in a time, right now,
04:48
where there is a big rich-poor divide.
04:51
It's something that brings the other 99%
04:55
that do not hold the country's wealth,
04:57
give them something to work towards.
05:00
It's hard if you're not being a communist country anymore
05:03
and you're being capitalist, then you are going
05:05
to have those differences.
05:06
It's natural.
05:08
(upbeat music)