The magnetism of old(-ish) Hong Kong money and new Mainland China money has fueled the construction of pompous residential real estate developments across China’s Pearl River Delta. I’m sure many of the residents of these complexes are quite normal and don’t actually act as though they live on the sets of Dynasty or Dallas, but the promotional materials reek from the pretension of the tasteless developers.
“A Majestic Kingdom with a token of luxury and superiority.”
In Hong Kong’s New Territories “Providence Bay” (天賦海灣) seeks to convince potential buyers of its relaxed, but exclusive, sea-side feeling with a series of photographs of white people on luxury yachts:
Sadly, while the development is on the Tolo Harbor, there is no marina* at Providence Bay. But that doesn’t stop the grasping developers from describing their low-rise condo development as having the:
“Communal atmosphere of the coastal regions of southern France.”
Finally, the most pompous of them all, “The Beverly Hills“ (比華利山別墅) of Hong Kong, provides the following nauseating copyright:
“When it comes to choosing a perfect home, the rich and powerful never settle for less.
“The Beverly Hills is majestically situated on the most exclusive stretch of Tai Po coastline, a crown jewel shining on a crystal aquamarine sea. Nestled in an infinity of sky and sea, its noble bearing invites admiration from those who appreciate only the finest things in life.”
Such quotes are interspersed with photographs of faux royalty, including a bridal couple in a gilded carriage, mounted guards, and this chummy group of Oxbridge-esque, privileged youth:
For potential buyers with a greater interest in Eastern-style auspiciousness, “The Bev’s” property developers pull out a full-frontal Feng Shui assault:
“The exceptional location of The Beverly Hills endows it with superb Feng Shui. … Mountains beyond mountains and water appearing to float above water compose an enfolding Tai Chi pattern resembling a ‘treasure box’. .. The Beverly Hills is a residential gem commended by many leading Feng Shui masters.”
But don’t assume this is exclusively a “China-thing,” as most of these developers probably got their original ideas from the pretentious residential developments of America. Think Donald Trump or great swaths of Southern California. Even my own childhood neighborhood in desert-dry, “salt-of-the-earth” Utah was named “Somerset Farm” after the rolling green countryside of southwest England. Tacky property developers lurk the world-over, waiting for little local spikes in wealth to sell to.
Have a favorite bit of nauseating real estate copy? Please share.
*There is a small public pier. I think I saw a small fishing boat there. Once.