Yes, Hong Kong Tatler 500 lister Adrian Cheng is the heir to the world’s largest jewellery empire and yes, he also runs the conglomerate New World Development—but he's not stopping there. From his new venture capital to his affinity for wearing limited edition sneakers with suits, find out how Hong Kong’s unofficial cultural attaché is challenging the city's norms:

1. Tapping into millennial culture

Adrian is deeply interested and heavily invested in the millennial generation, so much so that he recently founded C Ventures—an investment fund with its eye on technology-driven brands and services that cover art, media and fashion.

"My team and I are researching Chinese millennials along with Generation Z (those born after 1995) because these groups will have the most spending power in the next 30 years, yet remain a puzzle," he says. 

See also: Adrian Cheng's C Ventures Taps China's Millennial Market

2. He lives in his Yeezies 

If the shoe fits, Adrian buys them in every colour. His current favourites are his limited edition Yeezy Boost 350 V2 sneakers—which he owns in White, Oreo and Zebra—and he wears them everywhere, including to business meetings. "They’re comfortable and chic and I wear them with a suit to meetings, openings and site visits," he says.

He’s also one of the few in Hong Kong who has ditched the tie at annual shareholder meetings.

3. Putting Chinese red wine on the map

Few outside of China have heard of the vineyard, let alone tried its wine, but family-owned Grace Vineyard in Shanxi is ranked among the top wineries in Asia. We attended a few of Adrian’s events, where he shared the 2010 Chairman’s Reserve—of which he purchased all 3000 bottles.

“This fine vintage is the best red wine in China," says Adrian. "But not a lot of people outside the country are aware of it.”

4. Bridging cultures through design 

Adrian founded the non-profit Culture for Tomorrow last year to help turn audacious design and architectural ideas into reality. At its inaugural event, Adrian introduced a life-sized sauna designed by Finnish architect Ville Hara, and a traditional Hong Kong style pavilion, to the Tsim Sha Tsui Waterfront.

“It’s a fun idea—imagine sitting in a sauna or in a pavilion facing the harbourfront on Hong Kong’s busiest promenade. More importantly, it takes on two culturally iconic architectures as we invite architects and designers, as well as the public, to reimagine the use of public space.”

See also: What's A Finnish Sauna Doing In Hong Kong?

5. Redefining work culture in Hong Kong

While he introduced the world’s first museum-retail concept, K11 Art Mall, in 2009, we were excited to hear about a new office tower under his belt—K11 Atelier. It's the first workplace in Hong Kong that integrates art, people and nature in one building. It also offers programmes ranging from spiritual and physical wellness to creativity to team building.

“[K11 Atelier gives] the new generation of talents what they really want: premium office space with the ability to connect with other like-minded, forward-thinking individuals.”

See also: 5 Hong Kong Art Exhibitions To See In January

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