CHILDREN of some of Asia’s richest business tycoons and politicians are unabashedly flaunting their extravagant lifestyles on social media, Straits Times reported.
Many of these young and rich personalities have become easy targets for political attacks, as in the case of Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s granddaughter, Meers Alyana Mukhriz who was recently savaged in two pro-Umno newspapers, Utusan Malaysia and Berita Harian, which published Instagram pictures showing her in designer clothes and travelling around on a luxury yacht.
Instagram pictures of TV personality Rozita Che Wan lightly kissing her husband Zain Saidin on the Eiffel Tower in Paris in 2014 and on on Mykonos island in Greece last year led to dozens of angry comments. She said she had to block hundreds of accounts on social media.
In Indonesia, a tweet in August of a picture of a Koenigsegg – a Swedish sports car – by a friend of local celebrity Raffi Ahmad described the car as Raffi’s new ride.
In response, a tweet from the account of the Directorate-General of Tax said:
“Please inform Raffi to report on his annual tax filing if he has new asset.”
Other children of prominent people whose eye-catching adventures may be followed online are:
Norashman Najib, Malaysia
Norashman, the son of Prime Minister Najib Razak, recently posted a picture of himself at a Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show in Shanghai last week. Norashman, 27, had a seat at the show which featured models in scintillating lingerie and posted a selfie with one of the models, Josephine Skriver. Ashman, as he is known to friends, is well known to social media users as he frequently documents his love for music on Instagram. But most posts show him trailing his father on official business trips, including a ministerial meeting with US President Donald Trump in September.
Chryseis Tan, Malaysia
Chryseis is the chief executive of Berjaya Times Square in Kuala Lumpur. Forbes values her father Vincent Tan, one of Malaysia’s most recognisable tycoons, at US$820 million (RM3.4 billion) this year. Chryseis, who often documents her travels through Instagram stories, was recently engaged to Faliq Nasimuddin, 32, a son of Naza Group founder Nasimuddin Amin. She had her pre-wedding photoshoot in Venice. Dressed in a Monique Lhuillier gown, her photos were taken by Greg Finck, one of the top wedding photographers listed by Harper’s Bazaar. She celebrated her 29th birthday last month in Venice, with dinner in an emptied-out hall at the Aman Venice, where Hollywood superstar George Clooney tied the knot with Amal Alamuddin.
Isabelle Duterte, the Philippines
The granddaughter of President Rodrigo Duterte stirred a hornet’s nest recently when she posted Instagram photos of herself in expensive, designer garb as her father was being investigated over 6.4 billion pesos (RM500 million) worth of smuggled methamphetamine. The 17-year-old is the daughter of Davao Vice-Mayor Paolo Duterte, 42, the elder of Duterte’s two sons. Paolo’s name came up in a testimony given in August to the Senate by a Customs “fixer” being investigated for allegedly facilitating a shipment of 604kg of crystal meth in May. Paolo has claimed he is innocent. While this was happening, Isabelle posted photos that showed her with a US$3,100 Celine bag and donning a US$750 pair of Chanel ballerina flats. She has another Celine bag, worth about US$2,700, and US$620 Gucci Ace sneakers.
Richard Muljadi, Indonesia
Lawyer-turned-entrepreneur Kartini Muljadi was the only Indonesian woman on the Forbes 2016 list of Indonesia’s 50 richest individuals, with a net worth of US$760 million. Her family controls listed pharmaceutical firm Tempo Scan Pacific. Her grandson Richard, 29, regularly shows his audience how some of that money is spent. In one picture, he is standing astride two red Ferraris. A short video highlights how he spends a day at home, showing him starting the engine of his red Porsche 911 Carrera, then his yellow Lamborghini, before cruising around his swimming pool in a Yamaha WaveRunner jet boat. In another photo, Richard shows he has not one, but two, vintage watch collectors’ items – the 1970s Rolex Military Submariner. He is married to former model and actress Shalvynne Chang, 27.
Robbie Antonio, the Philippines
Robbie, 39, is the son of Century Properties’ owner Jose Antonio who is a business partner of US President Donald Trump. The property scion is friends with Trump’s children Ivanka, Eric and Donald Jr. Those ties have led to a US$150 million, 57-storey, Trump-branded tower in Manila. In 2013, Robbie commissioned Dutch architect Rem Koolhaas to build him a US$15 million Manila home to house a museum for his art collection, including a series of 35 portraits of himself by some of the world’s top contemporary artists, dubbed in a Vanity Fair story as his “Museum of Me”.
While Robbie keeps a low profile on social media, his Instagram account has him posing with celebrities he considers close friends, such as Adrien Brody and Lenny Kravitz. He has also been photographed with Paris Hilton, who designed an artificial beach for him, and, of course, with Trump. The self-promotion and networking are part of a successful business model that Century Properties has latched on to. It builds luxury properties and has celebrity partners like Paris Hilton.
– Malay mail