Ultra-Wealthy Chinese Favour American Luxury, Studies Suggest

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Flair Rooftop Restaurant & Bar, The Ritz-Carlton Shanghai

When it comes to education, immigration and international property, the wealthy Chinese have been found to favour the United States, according to a report by Hurun. Aside from the popularity of American retailers including Tiffany & Co. and Apple, the study suggests that travel, hospitality and real estate rank amongst the sectors benefiting most from Chinese interest.

Joining the U.S. in the top three travel destinations for Chinese consumers are France and Maldives. The Maldives in particular has been increasingly popular amongst the Chinese; aside from stunning beaches, Chinese passport holders can visit the Maldives without a visa. Along with Kyrgyzstan and Armenia, China currently ranks at 69th on the Passport Index and can only enter 58 countries in the world with no visa.

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According to Hurun’s report on American luxury brands in China, American hotels including The Ritz-Carlton, and Four Seasons have consistently ranked as favorites, along with Singapore-based Banyan Tree. Furthermore, the Best North American Airline Serving China has been awarded to United Airlines for the third year in a row.

The report also indicates Christie’s International Real Estate is the preferred brokerage for Chinese consumers searching for permanent or vacation homes. The luxury real estate arm of auction house Christie's recently announced an imminent partnership with news portal Zaobao.com, to generate monthly real estate content.

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According to Rupert Hoogewerf, chairman and chief researcher at Hurun, ultra high net-worth Chinese view American education as the best in the world, especially at postgraduate level. Hoogewerf adds, “However, it is worth being aware that China-based business schools such as CKGSB, CEIBS and recently-launched Hupan have the most active alumni.”

Indeed, of the 449 affluent respondents surveyed, 34 percent indicate U.S. as their Top Education Destination, up from the previous year’s 30 percent.

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