Changyu and Penang’s Blue Mansion continue their "Great Story"

In mid-April, the Mayor of Yantai led a trade and economic delegation to Malaysia, accompanied by Mr. Zhou Hongjiang, Chairman of Changyu. At the exchange meeting, both sides initially reached a consensus. With the help of the historical link of Chang BiShi (a.k.a. Cheong Fatt Tze), the founder of Changyu, they hope to strengthen the cultural tourism cooperation between Yantai and Penang. Changyu also discussed with the Blue Mansion about opening an exhibition hall.

Changyu Retraced its Steps toward Penang: The meeting was held in the Blue Mansion, the former residence of Mr. Chang BiShi in Penang. With its blue exterior wall and unique Chinese and Western styles, it has become a famous local scenic spot. Blue Mansion is the largest existing garden house with Chinese and Western elements in Malaysia, which has 5 courtyards, 7 staircases, 38 rooms, and 220 hand-carved wooden shutters. In 2000, the Blue Mansion was awarded UNESCO Asia-Pacific Heritage Awards for Culture Heritage Conservation, and listed as “One of 10 Greatest Mansions In the World” Lonely Planet 2011. It was also used as a movie location, such as Indochine, the 65th Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film, “Crazy Rich Asians", and Chinese film “Night • Light”.

Continue the "Great Story": Mr. Lu Lin Sheng Yi, the director of Blue Mansion, said “Obviously we share history, this house was built by Chang Bishi around the same time he founded Changyu, which is late 19th century I believe. So for me, I feel like it's full circle.” “I think it's for us it's a very great story, an amazing story, and a closure of a loop that should have been closed a long time ago” “so we are glad to have Changyu here. we are happy to sell their wines and market their wines with our restaurant, to our guests that walk through our restaurant. And I think it's a great story."

Mr. Chang Bi Shi, the founder of Changyu, went to Southeast Asia at the age of 17 to start his business. His assets are as high as 80 million taels of silver, making him the richest man in Southeast Asia. As the first Chinese Consul in Penang and the Pacificator of the Republic of China in South Asia, Mr. Chang made a significant contribution to Penang’s economy, education, and exchanges with China. In 1962, Penang authorities named a road after Chang Bi Shi in honor of him.

Zhou Hongjiang, chairman of Changyu, sighed that this is a journey to find our root, a journey of admiration, and a journey of condolence. Mr. Chang Bishi founded more than 40 enterprises in his lifetime, covering reclamation, shipping, commerce, mining, etc., and was praised as "J.P. Morgan of China" and the "Rockefeller of the East" by the New York Times. In 1892, Mr. Chang invested 3 million taels of silver and founded China's first wine enterprise - Changyu in Yantai, which has spent his most efforts and is still in healthy operation today. After 132 years of growth, Changyu has developed over 250,000 mus of vineyards, hold 6 wine companies in France, Spain, Chile, and Australia, and operated 14 wine estates in the world. The products of Changyu have been exported to more than 80 countries. Last year, Changyu comes top with a BSI score of 83.2 in Brand Finance’s World’s Strongest Wine & Champagne Brand List 2023, “which also means we still have great potential for development in the future”, said Mr. Zhou, chairman of Changyu.