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Chinese media & celebs propel property investment abroad
By Juwai, 10 November 2014
It’s no secret that popular media influences consumer behaviour, so perhaps it’s no surprise that popular Chinese celebrities are now impacting overseas property investment.
Recently, a Chinese buyer with a budget of ¥100 million came to us in search of a vineyard or château in France.
Despite the fact that he speaks nary a word of English nor French, he's keen to invest in France.
His reason is simple. He saw that Zhao Wei, one of China’s most popular and glamorous actresses, bought Château Monlot in Saint-Émilion, Bordeaux.1
Naturally, he had to get one too.
This is a direct example of a larger trend, whereby popular Chinese television and celebrities are sparking new interest in real estate overseas.
When Beijing met Seattle
Last year, a Chinese movie inspired by the American romantic comedy, “Sleepless in Seattle” stirred up a surge of Chinese property investment in Seattle.
Bangze Wang, a Beijing native living in Seattle, tells the New York Times:
“People my age in China suddenly started talking about Seattle.”
The movie, titled “Finding Mr. Right” (北京遇上西雅图 or “Beijing Meets Seattle” in Chinese), was one of China's highest grossing files of all time and gave many Chinese buyers their first introduction to city, inspiring new home purchases and migration.2
The reality show factor
Another example is popular Chinese reality show “Where Are We Going, Dad?” (爸爸去哪儿), which features five Chinese celebrity fathers and their children travelling to mystery destinations.3
With 400 million Chinese viewers, the show brought massive, unprecedented Chinese attention to New Zealand when they filmed their season finale – and first international destination – in Rotorua.
"In a market like China, the profile this show has given New Zealand as a family friendly, desirable visitor destination, is unprecedented,” said Kevin Bowler, Chief Executive of Tourism New Zealand.
With that said, perhaps Chinese movies and celebrities offer more hints than you think as to where Chinese buyer are looking, seeing as some of these destination traits are precisely what they consider when investing overseas.
Sources: 1. Decanter.com; 2. The Guardian; 3. Tourism New Zealand
[Image source: "Finding Mr. Right" (北京遇上西雅图) movie]
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