Hey, guys, do you have $132 million to spare? If you are of the lucky few who can answer ‘yes’, you can consider placing your order for this luxurious superyacht which is so sleek you’d almost be forgiven for mistaking it for a floating limousine.

The Sovereign superyacht is the brainchild of Gray Design who specialises in both superboats and supercars – or sometimes, like the Sovereign, ingenious combinations of both. The superyacht is inspired by a limousine and even comes with its own matching car.

The 100-metre Sovereign superyacht

“We thought about a typical person on board one of these yachts and asked: how do they travel on land? Well limousine,” says Gray Design CEO Eduard Gray. “It’s a very unique concept in the yacht world.”

At the back end of the yacht, is a circular infinity pool that surrounds a reinforced glass helipad. The latter also acts as a skylight for the room below. There are ten guest suites, in addition to the owner’s extensive main quarters, as well as a cinema, gym, library and nightclub area which epitomises ‘elegance and class’.

Read the rest of this entry…


Indonesians monopolized the top 5 positions of t recently release Wall Street Journal’s Southeast Asia Power List of the 30 most influential business leaders in Southeast Asia while positions 6 to 10 on the list went to Malaysians.

Aburizal Bakrie, owner of Bakrie Group, takes the first position. He is one of Indonesia’s most prominent business and political leaders. The billionaire’s business group is part-owner of Bumi Resources Group, Indonesia’s biggest coal producer by output, of which he is also the Chairman. He also is chairman of Indonesia’s Golkar political party, a member of the ruling coalition.

Aburizal Bakrie

Ranked second on the list is Putra Sampoerna, Chairman of Sampoerna Group,  who is estimated to be worth more than $2 billion. After selling his tobacco businesses in 2005, he has been focusing on online gaming and agricultural businesses.

Putra Sampoerna

Ranked third is Anthoni Salim, CEO of Salim Group which has interests in everything from real estate to agriculture. Its Indofood Sukses Makmur has grown into one of the world’s largest instant-noodle makers.

Anthoni Salim

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Elin Nordegren has splashed $12.2 million of her $110 million divorce settlement from Tiger Woods on a 17,178-square-foot beach-front property in North Palm Beach, Florida,  just 10 miles south of Tiger’s new pad in Jupiter Island, Fla.

Elin Nordegren's new house

According to Palm Beach County records, Nordegren bought the two-story 17,000 sq feet beach front mansion–which boasts eight bathrooms and a 4,700-square-foot basement–in February through one of her divorce lawyers, Dennis Belcher.

Another view of Elin Nordegren's new $12.2 million beach-front house

Even though Tiger paid nearly five times more than Elin for his $50 million house, Elin’s new two-story pad has double the living space and is located right on the beach.

Last week, Woods announced that he’d be moving into his 12-acre $50-million bachelor pad soon, which includes a 6,400-square-foot gym/media room/bar, an elevator, a reflecting pond, a lap pool, and a 3.5 acre practice facility.

“The practice facility features four greens, six bunkers with different depths and kinds of sand, a video center and a putting studio,” Woods wrote on his blog last week. “It’s also set up so I can hit shots out of my second-story studio.”

Another view of Tiger Woods' new home

In 2010 Elin split with Tiger Woods after Woods’ numerous affairs were revealed. The former couple agreed to live near each other for the sake of their children, Sam and Charlie.

Elin Nordegren and Tiger Woodsduring happier times


The modern Cinderella story of twenty-two-year-old Hong Kong actress Isabella Leong has apparently come to an end. Isabella stunned fans across the globe when she announced that she is separating from billionaire businessman Richard Li, the son of Hong Kong’s richest man Li Ka-shing.

Isabella Leong

In case you do not know, according to the Forbes World’s Richest List published in March, Li Kai-Shing, who owns 21 billion US dollars worth of assets, is ranked 14th in the world. Richard Li, the youngest son of Li Kai-Shing, has been dubbed “Little Superman” by the press, and has a net worth of about 9 billion RMB. He is the Chairman and Executive Director of PCCW Limited, Hong Kong’s IT and communications giant,  and Pacific Century Group in Hong Kong, Chairman of Singapore-based Pacific Century Regional Developments Limited, and a non-executive director of the Bank of East Asia.

Already the mother of three children with Richard Li Jat Kai, Isabella Leong Lok Si suddenly issued a statement to the media last Saturday. Just as everyone thought that she was about to marry rich, she dropped the bombshell.

Isabella Leong....beautiful

In the statement, Isabella said, “2011 will be a new phase of my life. I have already split from Richard. We had a good time together; we will share custody of our children. Their health and happiness are our common interest. I hope the public will cease all speculations through this statement.”

The couple reportedly broke up a few weeks ago, and though they will share joint custody of their children, Isabella is rumored to get cars and properties from her soon to be ex-partner, in addition to child support.

It was rumored that 22 year-old Isabella was seen chatting with a male at a bar in Toronto for three hours and this caused the rift, but those rumors were rubbished by her spokesperson Lo Mik Shuet who said that that man was an elementary school classmate of Isabella and also a friend of Richard Li.

Sexy Isabella

Media reports have revealed another side to the break-up between Hong Kong billionaire Richard Li and actress Isabella Leong and it seems like third parties are involved. Li is rumoured to be involved with model Mandy Lieu and “Queen of the World 2009″ contestant Zhao Yaqi.

Li  is rumored to be surrounded by female companions and that he had gotten to know American-Malaysian Mandy Lieu in 2009. Mandy, 25, is a presenter at Li’s television channel NOW and is rumoured to be the ex-girlfriend of actor Berlin Chen for three years before breaking up early last year. Mandy’s “Westernised” character was a good fit with Li and they got along rather well.

Mandy Lieu

Another rumour circulating at the moment is Li’s involvement with Zhao Yaqi in 2009, the same time Isabella was pregnant with twins. Zhao is the second runner-up in the Miss Tourism of the Globe and a model who has been involved in many pageants and contests.

Zhao Yaqi

Both Isabella and Richard have kept mum about the reasons for their split.

Isabella Leong ( aka Leong Lok-Sze)  was born 23 June 1988 in Macau. Her father was a descendant of a prominent Macanese family of Portuguese-English heritage, and her mother is Chinese. Leong dropped out of school at the age of 12 to join Emperor Entertainment Group as a teenage model.

Isabella in a sexy photo shoot

Another photo from the sexy photo shoot

She later turned to singing and released her debut album, Isabella, at 16 years of age. Isabella did not achieve the success hoped for and she turned to acting instead. From 2005-2007, she made a string of films including The Eye 10, Bug Me Not!, Isabella, Diary, and Spider Lilies.

"Spider Lillies" movie poster

Leong went on to land her first American film role in The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor, which was released in 2008.

Isabella in The Mummy

While starring in film “The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor,” Isabella Leong was introduced to Richard Li by actress Michelle Yeoh. Although they had a 20 year age difference, Li fell in love at first sight with Isabella.

Isabella Leong and her close friend Michelle Yeoh

Isabella, who won a Porto Film Festival Best Actress for her role in the movie “Isabella”, had a contract at that time with Emperor Entertainment Group, one of the largest entertainment groups in Hong Kong.

"Isabella" movie poster

Emperor Entertainment Group filed a lawsuit in the High Court on 3 April 2008 to seek damages from Leong for breaking a 10-year contract which Leong’s mother signed for her when she was only 12 years old. Leong filed a writ against the company on 27 April. In November 2008 the legal battle between Leong and EEG ended in an out-of-court settlement, with the star “free to pursue her career”. Hong Kong media reported that Richard Li spent about 6.2 million US dollars to resolve Leong’s 13-year contract with Emperor.

The 22 year old former singer and actress gave birth to Ethan Li Changzhi, Li’s first son, in Toronto, Canada,  on April 26 2009, after which Li lavished property, services, and gifts upon the new mother. Leong was allowed to use Li Family mansions in San Francisco. The Li family also provided her with an entourage of care-givers, including five bodyguards, four full-time nannies and a personal attendant. There was some speculation about a large pre-nuptial agreement. A 100-day-old banquet was held for the son from July 9–11, 2009, for three consecutive days, with some of the city’s celebrities like Stanley Ho and his second wife Lam Wan Ying, and Tsang Yam Pui and his wife having been spotted in attendance.

Isabella Leong gave birth to Richard Li's first son, Ethan Li, in April 2009

Then in June 2010 she gave birth to Li’s twin sons. Because Isabella has borne three male heirs for the Li family, it was widely speculated that she would soon marry Li. According to tabloid reports, Richard’s father, Li Ka Shing, was extremely grateful towards Isabella for delivering three male heirs and approved of the marriage between Richard and Isabella. Indeed, recent rumors claim that Isabella may marry Richard in August.  Li Ka-Shing reportedly rebuilt his Deep Water Bay mansion recently, leaving the fourth floor for younger son’s family of five.

Li Mansion in Deep Water Bay

The announcement of the split has thus come as a shock to the entertainment world in Hong Kong and around Asia.

End of her Cinderalla story but might be the beginning of a brand new life for her.


Meet the second-youngest individual ever to be named Time magazine’s Person of the Year: Mark Zuckerberg, CEO and co-founder of the omnipresent social-networking site Facebook.

TIME's 2010 Person of the Year Mark Zuckerberg

“It’s something that is transforming the way we live our lives every day,” Rick Stengel, the magazine’s managing editor, said as he announced the magazine’s 2010 selection live on NBC’s ‘Today’ show earlier today. “It’s social engineering, changing the way we relate to each other.”

“He’s very affable, he’s in the moment, he’s quick-witted,” Stengel said, but “he has this thing when he gets on camera” and becomes suddenly shy.

Stengel said Zuckerberg stands out for accomplishing something that’s never been done before. “This year they passed 500 million users — one in 10 people on the planet.

“He’s our second-youngest Person of the Year,” Stengel added; only Charles Lindbergh, named the magazine’s very first Man of the Year back in 1927 when he was only 25, was younger. “He’s deeply affected by it.”

Zuckerberg created the hugely popular and influential social networking site, which reflects a major transformation in the way people communicate and do business.

Facebook CEO

“Facebook started out as a lark, but it has changed the way human beings relate to each other. And Mark Zuckerberg is the man who brought us here,” TIME says on the magazine’s website.

TIME’s editor, in their letter explaining “Why We Chose Him” wrote the following:

“At 26, Zuckerberg is a year older than our first Person of the Year, Charles Lindbergh — another young man who used technology to bridge continents. He is the same age as Queen Elizabeth when she was Person of the Year, for 1952. But unlike the Queen, he did not inherit an empire; he created one …”

For connecting more than half a billion people and mapping the social relations among them (something that has never been done before); for creating a new system of exchanging information that has become both indispensable and sometimes a little scary; and finally, for changing how we all live our lives in ways that are innovative and even optimistic, Mark Elliot Zuckerberg is TIME’s 2010 Person of the Year.”

Almost seven years ago, in February 2004, when Zuckerberg was a 19-year-old sophomore at Harvard, he started a Web service from his dorm. It was called Thefacebook.com, and it was billed as “an online directory that connects people through social networks at colleges.”

Mark Zuckerberg during his Harvard days

This year, Facebook — now minus the the — added its 550 millionth member. One out of every dozen people on the planet has a Facebook account. They speak 75 languages and collectively lavish more than 700 billion minutes on Facebook every month.

Last month the site accounted for 1 out of 4 American page views. Its membership is currently growing at a rate of about 700,000 people a day.

What just happened? In less than seven years, Zuckerberg wired together a twelfth of humanity into a single network, thereby creating a social entity almost twice as large as the U.S. If Facebook were a country it would be the third largest, behind only China and India. It started out as a lark, a diversion, but it has turned into something real, something that has changed the way human beings relate to one another on a species-wide scale. We are now running our social lives through a for-profit network that, on paper at least, has made Zuckerberg a billionaire six times over.

With Facebook co-founders Dustin Maskovitz and Chris Hughes in 2003

Facebook has merged with the social fabric of American life, and not just American but human life: nearly half of all Americans have a Facebook account, but 70% of Facebook users live outside the U.S. It’s a permanent fact of our global social reality. We have entered the Facebook age, and Mark Zuckerberg is the man who brought us here.

Zuckerberg is part of the last generation of human beings who will remember life before the Internet, though only just. He was born in 1984 and grew up in Dobbs Ferry, N.Y., the son of a dentist — Painless Dr. Z’s slogan was, and is, “We cater to cowards.”

Mark Zuckerberg in his baby days

Mark has three sisters, the eldest of whom, Randi, is now Facebook’s head of consumer marketing and social-good initiatives. It was a supportive household that produced confident children.

Mark Zuckerberg with his sister Randi in 2006

The young Mark was “strong-willed and relentless,” according to his father Ed. “For some kids, their questions could be answered with a simple yes or no,” he says. “For Mark, if he asked for something, yes by itself would work, but no required much more. If you were going to say no to him, you had better be prepared with a strong argument backed by facts, experiences, logic, reasons. We envisioned him becoming a lawyer one day, with a near 100% success rate of convincing juries.”

A lot of people feel as though they already know the 26-year-old Zuckerberg, thanks to the acclaimed movie “The Social Network,” which portrays Zuckerberg as socially stunted, calculating and arrogant. But Stengel told TODAY’s Matt Lauer and Meredith Vieira that there’s more to the multibillionaire CEO.

The Social Network movie poster

In his in-depth profile of Facebook’s co-founder, Time’s Lev Grossman writes that “Zuckerberg is a warm presence, not a cold one. He has a quick smile and doesn’t shy away from eye contact. He thinks fast and talks fast, but he wants you to keep up. He exudes not anger or social anxiety but a weird calm. When you talk to his co-workers, they’re so adamant in their avowals of affection for him and their insistence that you not misconstrue his oddness that you get the impression it’s not just because they want to keep their jobs. People really like him.”

Inside Facebook headquarters

Another scene from Facebook headquarters

The majority of the photos used in this blog post are courtesy of TIME magazine. You can view more photos at TIME magazine’s website.


Bob Guccione, who founded Penthouse magazine in the 1960s and built a pornographic media empire that broke taboos, outraged the guardians of taste and made billions before his empire was decimated by a string of bad investments and Internet competition, died yesterday at Plano Specialty Hospital in Plano, Texas, after losing a long battle with lung cancer. He was 79.

Flamboyant Bob Guccione

Flamboyant Bob Guccione

Robert Charles Joseph Edward Sabatini Guccione was born in Brooklyn on Dec. 17, 1930, the son of Anthony and Nina Guccione. He was raised Roman Catholic in Bergenfield, N.J., and said he considered the priesthood, but decided to be an artist. In 1948 he graduated from Blair Academy, in Blairstown, N.J. At 18 he married the first of his four wives, Lilyann Becker, and had a daughter, Tonia. The marriage soon failed.

Over the next 12 years he traveled in Europe and North Africa, sketching tourists in cafes and working odd jobs. In Tangier he met Muriel Hudson, an English singer. They traveled together for several years, were married in 1955 and had four children: Bob Jr., Nina, Anthony and Nick.

In 1960 they settled in London, where he ran a dry-cleaning business, drew cartoons for a syndicate and edited a small newspaper. A mail-order business, selling back issues of men’s magazines, put him deep in debt, and his wife left him, taking the children.

With Kathy Keeton, a dancer from South Africa who was his girlfriend, his business partner and later his wife, Guccione challenged Playboy at the height of the feminist movement and the sexual revolution, introducing Penthouse in the United States in 1969.

The adult publication billed itself as “the magazine of sex, politics and protest,” and quickly challenged Playboy magazine by offering a mix of tabloid journalism and provocative photos of nude women. The centerfolds were dubbed Penthouse Pets. Its images of women, often shot by Mr. Guccione, left little to the imagination. Compared with Playboy Playmates, as the Hefner centerfold models were known, Penthouse Pets were arrayed in more provocative poses. The magazine infuriated feminists and conservatives, but others praised it for breaking taboos.

In 1984 it was the magazine that took down Miss America, publishing nude pictures of Vanessa Williams, the first black woman to hold the title. Williams, who went on to fame as a singer and actress, was forced to relinquish her crown after the release of the issue, which sold nearly 6 million copies and reportedly made $14 million.

One of Penthouse topselling issues featuring Vanessa Williams

Guccione built a corporate empire under the General Media Inc. umbrella that included book publishing and merchandising divisions and Viva, a magazine featuring male nudes aimed at a female audience. He also created Penthouse Forum, the pocket-size magazine that played off the success of the racy letters to the editor.

By the early 1980s he was one of America’s richest men, king of a $300 million publishing empire, General Media, which owned Penthouse, with a monthly circulation of 4.7 million in 16 countries, and 15 other magazines in addition to book, video and merchandising divisions.

An April 2002 New York Times article quoted Guccione as saying that Penthouse grossed $3.5 billion to $4 billion over the 30-year life of the company, with a net income of almost 500 million dollars.

Forbes listed Guccione in its Forbes 400 ranking of the wealthiest people, estimating his net worth in 1982 as $400 million. His art collections, worth $150 million, included works by Degas, Renoir, Picasso, El Greco, Dalí, Matisse and Chagall. Troves of art and antiques filled his Manhattan home, a 17,000-square-foot double town house on East 67th Street, and his country estate in Staatsburg, N.Y.

Guccione and longtime business collaborator Kathy Keeton, who later became his third wife, also published more mainstream fare, such as Omni magazine, which focused on science and science fiction, and Longevity, a health advice magazine. Keeton died of complications during surgery for an intestinal obstruction, aged 58, in New York City. Her death had profound effects on Guccione’s business and personal life.

Kathy Keeton...Bob Guccione's third wife

Guccione’s empire fell apart thanks to several bad investments and changes in the pornography industry, which became flooded with competition as it migrated from print to video and the Internet. His company, his world-class art collection, his huge Manhattan mansion — all of it, sold off.

Probably his best-known business failure was a $17.5 million investment in the 1979 production of  film “Caligula.” Malcolm McDowell was cast as the decadent emperor of the title, and the supporting cast included Helen Mirren, John Gielgud and Peter O’Toole. Distributors shunned the film. However, it eventually became General Media’s most popular DVD.

Guccione also lost $160 million on the proposed Atlantic City Boardwalk Hotel and Casino. He never received a gambling license and construction of the casino stalled.

Legal fees further eroded his fortune. Among those who sued were televangelist Jerry Falwell, a California resort, a former Miss Wyoming and a Penthouse Pet who accused Guccione of forcing her to perform sexual favors for business colleagues.

In 1985, Guccione had to pay $45 million in delinquent taxes.

Penthouse’s downtrend accelerated in the 1990s as Internet pornography grew increasingly available. Guccione responded with more explicit sexual content that drove advertisers and vendors away, limiting many sales to pornographic bookstores.

In 2003, General Media (the publishing company for Penthouse) declared bankruptcy, and Guccione himself resigned as chairman of the board and CEO of Penthouse International, Inc.

In 2004, a private-equity investor from Florida acquired Penthouse in a bankruptcy sale. Penthouse and related properties are now owned by FriendFinder Networks Inc., a Boca Raton, Fla.-based company that offers social networking and online adult entertainment.

Guccione eventually went back to painting, and his works were shown at venues including the Butler Institute of American Art in Ohio and the Nassau County Museum of Art in New York.

Married four times, Guccione is survived by his fourth wife April Dawn Warren Guccione, as well as daughter Tonia from his first marriage and daughter Nina and three sons Bob Jr, Anthony and Nick from his marriage to his second wife Muriel Hudson. He did not have any children with April and his third wife Kathy Keeton.


Apple crushed revenue and earnings estimates, as expected, but the iPad business posted a huge miss: 4.19 million shipments versus the Street’s consensus at 4.7 million and many estimates above 5 million.

On the earnings call, Apple hinted that this was at least in part a supply issue, noting that supply and demand weren’t balanced until September, the last month of the quarter.

Steve Jobs stole the show on the call, trashing competitors like RIM and Google, and suggesting that the iPad and iPhone will win against rivals because they are better products at great prices. Jobs also said the company is holding onto its cash — more than $50 billion now — mostly in case a big strategic opportunity comes along.

On the plus side, Apple’s iPhone business posted huge numbers despite the “Antennagate” hoopla — Apple moved 14.1 million phones last quarter, and boasted in its press release that this beat RIM’s most recent quarter, when it shipped 12.1 million BlackBerry devices

Steve Jobs also announced that Apple has already sold more than 250,000 of the new Apple TV device.

On a lighter note, I have just received an email from my cousin Sylvester with these Steve Jobs/Apple/Bill Gates jokes. Apple investors are all smiles with the great earnings reported by Apple but I hope these jokes will bring a big grin to you all.

Apple jokes

"Apple" Jobs & "Soft" Gates


"Bills" Gates

Let’s get back to “serious” business again. Microsoft and Apples are rumored to be collaborating on a new product.  It is all shrouded in secrecy but I heard that the product will be called “SoftApple”  and will run on a BlowJob (oops!)  BillJob platform and powered by a Applegate processor.  Stay tuned for the launch!


India’s richest and world’s fourth richest man, industrialist Mukesh Ambani, has built what is claimed as the world’s first billion-dollar home – a 27-storey luxury residence in Mumbai.

The chairman of Reliance Industries, whom Forbes magazine forecast to be the world’s richest person by 2014, is all set to move into his mansion, named Antilia, after a mythical island in the Atlantic, by the end of this month.

Constructed in Mumbai’s downtown Altamount Road, the palatial building Antilia is a twenty-seven floor (560 ft or 173 m) building that took seven years to complete. It is situated on a 4,532 square metres (48,780 sq ft) plot at Altamount Road on the famed Cumballa (Malabar) Hill South Mumbai, India, where land prices are upward of US$10,000 per square meter. The skyscraper has a whopping five football pitches of floor space.

The palatial Antilia

The first six levels of the glass tower, which stands about 174 metres, has a garage where more than 160 cars can be parked and has nine elevators, the reports said.

On the top floors of the house, with a sweeping view of the city and out over the Arabian Sea, are quarters for the 53-year- old tycoon and his family of four. The family will occupy about 400,000 square feet, making it the largest home in the world.

Towering above the Mumbai skyline, the 37,000sq ft tower is grander than the Palace of Versailles in France. To keep things running smoothly, there is a full-time staff of 600.

It is designed by Chicago architects, Perkins & Will and is inspired by the Hanging Gardens of Babylon. The Melbourne-based construction company Leighton Holdings began constructing it but it has been finished by another company.

The skyscraper will have 3 helipads including air traffic control area on the top floor. The building is equipped with amenities such as a health spa, and small theatre with a seating capacity for 50 on the eighth floor. Other features include multiple swimming pools, three floors of hanging gardens, and a ballroom. Included in the tower are six floors of parking – the seventh floor is for in-house vehicle maintenance. It has been reported in the media to have a current extrapolated value at between US$1 billion and $2 billion, making it the most valuable residential building in the world. Reliance, however, said it cost U$50-70 million.

The 53-year-old industrialist is expected to move into his palatial home with his wife Nita Ambani and his three children Akash, Anant and Isha later this month.

Mukesh Ambani and family

Let’s take a quick tour of Mukesh Ambani’s new home:

1. The palatial Antilia

Another view of Antilia building

2. Nine elevators dot the lobby floor: Two are designated for parking areas, three for guest quarters, two for the Ambani family residences and two for service. The lobby opens to numerous lounges, reception areas and powder rooms. Dual stairways lead from the lobby floor down to the ballroom, which is designed in an open layout with a two-story roof.

Antilia - Elevators in the lobby floor

3. Ballroom : The most striking features of the Antilla ballroom are the crystal chandeliers that will take up approximately 80% of the ceiling. The silver stairways lead to a central landing, behind which two retractable doors can open to display works of art. There is also a stage for entertainment or speeches, with a projection screen behind it. A kitchen, about the same size as the ballroom itself, can service hundreds of guests.

Antilia's Ballroom

4. Bathroom : One of Antilla’s key design themes is the mix of lavish features seen in worldwide homes and elements that are distinctly Indian. The Gingko-leaf sink designs are a good example. Native to India, the leaves in the sinks are shaped in such a way that their stems guide water into the bowl created by the basket of the leaf.

Antilia's bathroom

5. Traditional Lounge : Ambani’s home features countless lounges, offering Reliance Industries guests a quiet escape. Chandeliers and mirrors are a common feature of these rooms, as are finely woven Indian area rugs.

Antilia's tradtional lounge

6. Modern Lounge : Each space and floor uses materials not seen anywhere else. The idea is that spaces will blend into one another, giving the impression of consistency and flow, while at the same time displaying different influences and traditions. This furniture, floors, lines and dark woods of this lounge have a more minimalistic approach than the home’s other lounges.

Antilia's modern lounge

7. Entertainment Level : It’s very common in large homes to have a theater or screening room, but usually they’re just large projection screens with a few nice seats. The Ambani’s theater is more like those seen in George Lucas’ Skywalker Ranch or Frank Pritt’s Portabello Estate–a full-fledged theater, indistinguishable from a cinema. A wine room, snack bar and entertaining space, including couches and tables, fill out the room. This is a detail from a floor plan rendering.

Antilia's theatre plan

8. Health Level : The indoor/outdoor health level features a lap pool and Jacuzzi that take in views of the city skyline, as well as lounge chairs shaded by trees. Yoga and dance studios, changing rooms for men and women, gyms and a solarium with a juice bar fill out the interior space. There are plans to include an ice room in the center space, where the Ambanis could sit on a hot Mumbai day to cool off in a man-made snow flurry. This is a detail from a floor plan rendering.

Antilia's health centre plan

9. Garage : The first six floors of the residence will be dedicated to parking for the Ambani family, guests and employees. Hanging vertical gardens dot the exterior. While they make for good decoration, their key function has to do with energy efficiency: The hydroponic plants, grown in liquid nutrient solutions instead of soil, lower the energy footprint of the home by absorbing heat and sunlight and providing shade that helps keep it cool.

Antilia's garage floors

10. Roof : The top floor features a covered, outdoor entertaining space with panoramic views of the Mumbai skyline as well as the Arabian Sea. On those days when it’s too hot, or cold, an interior space with floor-to-ceiling windows provides the same luxury.

Antilia's roof

Is this class or sheer arrogance? You decide!


11 of the 20 richest self-made women in the world are Chinese, with their average fortune of 2.6 billion dollars surpassing US talk show host Oprah Winfrey’s 2.3 billion and author JK Rowling’s 1 billion, the Shanghai-based Hurun Report reveals. And the top 3 richest on the list are all Chinese. Rowling, author of the immensely popular Harry Potter books, actually came bottom on the list.

Oprah Winfrey and J.K.Rowling

Paper-recycling queen Zhang Yin, head of Nine Dragons Paper Holdings, is the wealthiest with a fortune of US$5.6 billion, followed by Wu Yajun of Longfor Property with $4.1 billion and Chen Lihua of Hong Kong’s Fuhua International with $4 billion.

The list includes three billionaires from the United States, three from Britain and one each from Italy, Russia and Spain.

The richest non-Chinese person on the list is Rosalia Mera of Spanish clothing store Zara who is fourth overall with 3.5 billion dollars. U.S. talk show host Oprah Winfrey came ninth.

The top 10 richest self-made women on the Hurun list is  shown below’

Hurun List of the 10 Richest Self-Made Women 2010

The richest self-made woman in the world.....Zhang Yin aka Yan Cheung (age 53) of China's Nine Dragons Paper Holdings

No. 2 Wu Yajun (age 46) of China's Longfor Property

No.3 Chen Lihua aka Chan Laiwa (age 69) of Hong Kong's Fuhua International

No. 4 Rosalia Mera (age 66) of Spanish clothing store Zara

No. 5 Xiuli Hawken (age 47) of Renhe Commercial Holdings

No. 6 Elena Baturina (age 47) of Russia

No. 7 Zhu Linyao aka Chu Lam Yiu (age 40) of China's Huabao International

No.8 Doris Fisher (age 78) of USA's Gap

No. 9 Oprah Winfrey (age 56)

No. 10 Zhang Xin (age 45) of Soho China

Listed below are the 11th to the 20th richest self-made women:

11. Guiliana Benetton, age 72, of Italy’s Benetton ($2.0 billion)

12. Chen Ningning, age 38, of China’s Pioneer Metals Holdings ($1.7 billion)

13. He Qiaonu, age 44, of China’s Orient Landscape ($1.5 billion)

14. Huang Xi of China’s Zhongsheng Group ($1.4 billion)

15. Ruth Parasol, age 43, of UK Internet gambling ($1.32 billion)

16. Meg Whitman, age 54, former CEO of eBay ($1.3 billion)

17. Mary Perkins, age 66, of UK’s Specsavers ($1.29 billion)

18. Dai Weili, age 48, of China’s Marvell ($1.2 billion)

17. Zhou Yaxian, age 50, of China’s Shenguan Holdings ($1.1 billion)

20. JK Rowling, age 44, UK author of Harry Potter books ($1.0 billion)

A China expert attributed the country’s dominance to the fact that Chinese women are spurred in their ambitions by Mao Zedong’s dictum, “Women hold up half the sky.” In a survey, 76 percent of Chinese women aspired to top jobs, compared to only 52 percent of their U.S. counterparts. “Chinese women are also among the most ambitious on earth,” the Financial Times wrote.

“There is no other country that comes even close to touching the number of self-made women in China. They are now head and shoulders above any other country,” said Rupert Hoogewerf, founder and compiler of the Hurun rich list.

Hoogewerf partly attributed the Chinese women’s business success to the government’s one-child policy and free childcare provided by many grandparents, which has enabled them to spend time building their empires.

China’s long acceptance of women working outside the home has been another significant factor. The booming Chinese economy has also been a big factor, creating more opportunities, giving them access to a huge consumer population and also cheap labour.

Chinese female business owners recently made quite an impression on Kristina Bouweiri, head of $US15 million (estimated sales) Reston Limousine in the Washington DC, area, who recently returned from the Global Summit of Women in Beijing.

“These are the first women in history able to take advantage of the industrial revolution. My first impression is that it’s been easier for them in some ways. The opportunities have been greater. They seem to think a lot bigger,” says Bouweiri.

“They are kicking butt and making money.”

The London-based Financial Times attributed the figures to Chinese women being among the most ambitious on the planet.

The paper cited a study conducted by the Center for Work-Life Policy in New York, which found that 76 percent of women in China aspired to top jobs, compared to 52 percent in the United States.

Working mothers in China “are able to aim high, in part because they have more shoulders to lean on than their American and European peers when it comes to childcare”, the center noted.

While the achievements of Chinese women are impressive, they still lag behind their male counterparts. The Hurun Rich List on China’s wealthiest showed that only 11 percent of the richest people in China are women.


Hurun Research Institute yesterday released the Top Five of the Hurun Rich List 2010, the twelfth annual ranking of the richest individuals in China. The complete Hurun Rich List 2010, China’s equivalent of the Forbes list, listing 1363 individuals with personal wealth of at least a billion Chinese yuan (US$150 million), will be released mid-October. Hurun is a luxury publishing group run by British accountant Rupert Hoogewerf in Shanghai.

Twelve billion dollars. That’s what it takes to be named the richest person in China. China’s richest individual is Zong Qinghua with $12 billion, a fortune that is however dwarfed by the $53.5 billion amassed by Mexican tycoon Carlos Slim, who this year beat Bill Gates to the title of world’s richest person.

Zong Qinghou, 65, the Chinese soft drinks magnate famous for tackling the French Danone group in China’s highest-profile foreign investment dispute, has been named the mainland’s richest man with a personal fortune of $12bn. Zong tops a list of 1,363 yuan billionaires in China — up from 1,000 last year.

Zong heads Wahaha, China’s leading soft drinks company, which recently emerged largely victorious from a protracted global legal battle with Danone, its former joint venture partner. “Drinks King” Zong, 65, has overseen Wahaha’s rise to become China’s dominant drinks business with expected profits this year of US$1.5bn and 30,000 employees,” the Hurun Report, which compiles the list, said in a statement. He rose from 12th place last year.

After battling Zong in litigation and arbitration proceedings from Samoa to the British Virgin Islands, Danone last year decided to sell its 51 per cent share of the joint venture to Zong for only €300m — despite winning a partial ruling in its favour from a Stockholm arbitration panel. Danone had alleged that Zong — who managed the joint venture’s 36 subsidiaries — ran parallel operations that competed against the joint venture.

Zong and his wife and daughter hold 60 per cent of shares in the Wahaha group, which dominates China’s soft drinks market and has expanded into food products.

Zong was one of two drinks makers in the top five of the Rich List, released in Shanghai on Wednesday, underlining the strength of some Chinese consumer goods brands, and an unexpected rise in the proportion of manufacturers at the top of the list, at the expense of property developers.

“2010 is the first time in ten years a property tycoon has not made the Top Five,” says Rupert Hoogewerf, the list’s founder. He noted that China’s fourth wealthiest man, Liang Wen’gen, made his fortune from selling construction equipment — rather than from property speculation.

“Liang sells construction equipment to businesses feeding off the great Chinese urbanisation boom and has, in the process, made himself richer than any property developer”, says Mr Hoogewerf.

On average, the Hurun Rich Lister started out aged 34 in 1993, and is today 51 years of age. This is fifteen years younger than US or European counterparts, with faster growth in their fortunes.

“China probably now has the largest number of billionaires anywhere in the world,” says Rupert Hoogewerf. “We already know of 189 US dollar billionaires in China this year, but you can safely say that we have missed at least half again, meaning there are between 400 and 500 USD billionaires.”

The most popular family names in this year’s list are Wang with 103 people, Zhang 95, Li 92, Chen 89, Liu 59, Huang 47 and Wu 40. Interestingly, Zong Qinghou, this year’s Number One, is the only one with the surname Zong.

The Hurun Rich List is a snapshot of wealth as of 16 August 2010. The exchange rate used for US$ was RMB 6.8. The list relates to Mainland Chinese only, defined as someone born and brought up in Mainland China, no matter what passport they might hold today.

Last year’s number one, 44-year-old Wang Chuanfu, has seen his wealth drop ten percent as a result of his company’s waning fortunes on the stock market, placing him twelfth on the list with US$4.6 billion. The Warren Buffet-backed auto entrepreneur’s wealth was accumulated mainly from his BYD high-technology firm, which has specialized in batteries for mobile telephones and electric vehicles. BYD has recently had to cut its forecast of conventional car production for this year from 800,000 to 600,000. Delays in production of his electric cars have led the market to conclude that it may be years before BYD’s green cars make a big contribution to profits.

Wang Chuanfu

2008’s number one, Huang Guangyu, the imprisoned electronics tycoon and founder of Gome, the Chinese electronics empire, ranked 21 despite losing a protracted battle — waged from his jail cell — to replace the current Gome chairman with Mr Huang’s sister. Huang is serving 14-year prison sentence for insider share-trading, bribery and other offences.

Huang Guangyu of Gome

With its emerging wealth, China also has a growing income gap. The minimum monthly wage in parts of China is as low as 660 yuan ($95). China’s top leaders have made boosting farmers’ incomes a top political priority as they worry about social unrest.

Here are China’s top 5 richest people in 2010 according to Hurun:

1) 65-year old Zong Qinghou of Wahaha is the richest man in China with a personal fortune of US$12 billion. ‘Drinks King’ Zong has grown Wahaha into China’s dominant drinks business with expected profits this year of US$1.5 billion and 30,000 employees. This year, Wahaha finally settled its protracted dispute with France-based Danone. Zong, who, together with his wife and daughter owns 60% of Wahaha, has jumped up from twelfth place in last year’s list.  The owner of a company best known for its soft drinks brands was named as China’s richest person with a personal fortune estimated at some 12 billion dollars on Thursday. Zong Qinghou, 65, shot to the top of the annual China Rich List of the country’s wealthiest entrepreneurs after his Wahaha group settled a long dispute with French firm Danone, the Shanghai-based Hurun Report said. Zong, his wife and daughter hold 60 per cent of shares in the Wahaha group, which dominates China’s soft drinks market and has expanded into food products.

China's richest person...Zong Qinghou

2) Li Li & family caused a sensation when drug maker Shenzhen Hepalink Pharmaceutical went public in May, catapulting him straight into second place on the list with a personal fortune of US$6 billion. Li Li, 46 years, his wife Li Tan and her cousin Shan Yu founded the business in 1998 and together own a 75.6% stake. Hepalink makes heparin, a blood thinner purified from pig intestines, used to prevent blood clots. This is the first time a pharmaceutical tycoon has made it into the Top Five of the Hurun Rich List — underlining the rise of local drug companies eager to serve the rapidly expanding Chinese healthcare market.

Li Li of Hepalink

3) 53-year-old  Zhang Yin, founder of the paper-recycling giant Nine Dragons Paper, sees her wealth grow by almost a billion US dollars to US$5.6 billion on the back of growth in the domestic retail market. Li Li’s rise, however, drops Zhang down one place to third. Notwithstanding this, Zhang remains the richest woman in China, and the richest self-made woman in the world. “Paper Queen” Zhang Yin, who in 2006 became the first woman to head the list, remains China’s richest woman and now ranks third in the list.

Nine Dragons Paper's Zhang Yin...China's richest woman

4) Liang Wengen of Sany Heavy Industry Co. Ltd is proof of the adage that if you want to make money in a gold rush, sell shovels to gold miners. 54 year old Liang jumped 16 places to fourth with a personal fortune of US$5.4 billion. Liang sells construction equipment to businesses feeding off the great Chinese urbanisation boom and has, in the process, made himself richer than any property developer.

Liang Wengen.... Chairman of Sany Group

Liang’s wealth rose sharply largely after listing a second subsidiary, this time in Hong Kong. The only company from the Hurun Top Five headquartered in China’s poorer Western regions, Liang has overseen Sany’s growth into one of the world’s biggest makers of construction equipment, with sales last year of US$4.5 billion and 46,000 employees. Liang owns 58.2% of the group.

5) Fifth of the list is a  tie between Robin Li Yanhong with search engine company Baidu Inc. and Yan Bin of Ruoy Chai International Group, whose brands include Red Bull energy drinks.

Robin Li Yanhong saw his wealth double year on year, placing him fifth on the list with US$5.3 billion. 42-year-old Li has Google’s departure from China to thank for Baidu’s sharp share increase, and is this year lining up Baidu to take on Taobao in the online shopping market.

Robin Li Yanhong of Baidu

Yan Bin has grown his fortune on the back of a strong performance in sales of Red Bull energy drinks in China, which are expected to hit US$800 million this year. Fifty-six year old Yan started his business in Thailand and is also known by his Thai name of Chanchai Ruayrungruang. Apart from Red Bull, Yan owns the luxury Reignwood Group, which includes the best-known golf club in Beijing. He is the second drink maker in the Top 5.

Yan Bin also known by his Thai name of Chanchai Ruayrungruang