The ever-young Chiang Yu Lan spares time amid her busy schedule during a visit to Jakarta for a chat with Indonesia Tatler. Here’s what she has to say.
Tell us a little about your background? Where you were born, raised and the life you led back in the day.

I was born and raised in Taipei where I lived with my parents, three sisters and two brothers. I have a close relationship with my siblings and even though all of us are married and live in different parts of the world, we still meet up pretty often.

Since you are currently based in Singapore but travel to Jakarta much, which city do you prefer and why?

Each city has its own vibe. Living in Jakarta after my marriage was a huge transition. Language, culture, food and lifestyle were huge hurdles, which I slowly overcame. Indonesia has rich natural resources and a huge pool of labor that makes one of the emerging market economies in the world. Singapore has its pros. It has transformed into a beautiful garden city with high standards of living, education, cleanliness, efficiency, law and order. Even though there are many races living in Singapore, they are able to live harmoniously.

Tell us about your kids and grandkids and what they are currently doing.

Both of my elder daughters are married and are living in Jakarta. Therefore, I spend most of my time in Jakarta. The twins have recently graduated with MBA degrees. I have a grandson, Liam who turned two years old. My family showers the love and attention onto him, hoping he will grow up to be a caring and kind individual.

What are you passionate about in life? A few mottos you live by, perhaps?

I am passionate about living healthily and eating well. I believe that one should have a proper regime to maintain a healthy living style and correct attitude and towards learning.

We believe you are a ballroom dancer? How and when did you develop a passion for ballroom dancing?

I was mesmerized when I watched a ballroom competition in Singapore. Their elegance, poise and classical music made me take up ballroom dancing.

What has ballroom dancing taught you about yourself as a person?

Ballroom dancing has taught me qualities such as perseverance and good manners. With hard work and determination, nothing is impossible. Besides the skills and techniques, ballroom dancing also incorporates social etiquette.

Could you share with us some of the achievements/awards in ballroom dancing that you are most proud of?

I was the champion for a few competitions such as The Hour Glass Open Asian Open Dance Championship 2008, 15th Penang International Ballroom Dancing championship 2008 and 2012 US Open to the World Pro-Am B Ballroom Scholarship.

You also have an eye for art. Which artists are you most fond of and why? 

Some of my favorite artists are Lee Man Fong, Wu Guanzhong and Qi Baishi as I collect their paintings. I love watercolor works sceneries of China.

What about your take on fashion? What are some of your favourite brands and personal styles?

Personally, I feel that we should dress accordingly to our age and status. We should not follow fashion blindly but find one that suits our style and body type. A few of my favorite brands are Chanel, Dior, Dolce and Gabbana, Balmain and Fendi. I prefer apparel that are elegant and sexy.

How do you maintain a fit body and a healthy lifestyle?

I work out regularly and eat wisely. I tend to avoid wheat, grains, and consume more vegetables and fruits. I drink plenty of water to hydrate myself and will do a facial mask daily to keep my face supple. Having sufficient sleep and avoiding the sun and alcohol are my believes in maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

(Photo credit: Heri B. Heryanto)

Tags: Society, Fashion, Chiang Yu Lan, Socialite, Interview, Lifestyle, Profile, Personality