#WithHeart: Chinoy trailblazer Kenneth Cobonpue joins Shangri-La’s 50th-anniversary campaign

Shangri-La is, without a doubt, one of the few five-star hotels that stayed on top of their game bringing unparalleled service and commitment to the hotel industry. This writer has booked this hotel brand for both leisure and work in the past, but her experience with her every stay remains the same: it feels like home. 

In 1971, the first Shangri-La Hotel opened its doors in Singapore, welcoming guests like family. Since then, Shangri-La’s journey has mirrored Asia’s rapid growth. 

Fast forward to today, the five-star hotel celebrates its 50th anniversary in the business. To commemorate this milestone, Shangri-La unveils the #WithHeart campaign, which honors the passion which drives the brand’s evolution and the rise of Asia through the stories of those who have lived this transformation. 

The campaign brings to life the significance of “wholeheartedness” in all endeavors. A short film series, premiering on Nov. 19, will tell the stories of young and passionate Asian culture makers. The campaign will also include a quest to discover #WithHeart through social media and extend into 2022 with collaborations and experiences.

“As we reflect on 50 years of bringing the best of Asia to the world through our heartfelt hospitality, we wanted to showcase stories that embody the tradition, craftsmanship, and passion of the region we call home,” said Chairman of Shangri-La Group Hui Kuok. 

“Asia has been through an incredible transformation, reinventing itself with unparalleled economic, cultural, and technological progress and a pioneering spirit that we share,” he continued. “Shangri-La is proud to have supported this growth. As we mark our anniversary, we want to bring to life the stories that have made Asia what it is today. We are not just celebrating our past but looking towards the future as we embark on our next chapter.”

As part of the campaign, the “From Asia With Heart” short film series by Shangri-La tells the stories of six trailblazing culture-makers who are preserving Asian traditions and craftsmanship and innovating and reimagining their industries for new generations. The series features: 

Kenneth Cobonpue, Furniture Designer: An award-winning designer known for integrating nature, traditional crafts, and innovative technologies, Kenneth Cobonpue’s home furniture showcase his respect for the environment and the Philippine islands where he grew up.

DeAille Tam, Chef: Named Asia’s Best Female Chef by Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants, DeAille Tam is known for her inventive cuisine, combining traditional Chinese flavors with Western cooking perspectives.

Xiong Liang, Illustrator: As the first Chinese illustrator shortlisted for the Hans Christian Andersen Award, Xiong Liang is devoted to recreating Chinese folklore as picture books introducing Chinese culture to children.

Red Hong Yi, Installation Artist: An architecture graduate who followed her creative passions to become an installation artist, Red Hong Yi builds masterpieces with unexpected materials while evoking unique cultural sentiments that pay tribute to her heritage as Malaysian-Chinese.

Haochen Zhang, Pianist: World-renowned pianist Haochen Zhang brings colorful Asian themes to his captivating piano concerto performances throughout Asia and across the globe.

Huishan Zhang, Fashion Designer: Renowned for his unique approach that marries Asian heritage and Western influences in his designs, Huishan Zhang was named by Business of Fashion 500 as one of the major influences on the global fashion industry. 

In celebration of these stories worldwide, Shangri-La is also rewarding those who share their #WithHeart stories on social media. Beginning on Nov. 22 on Instagram, the brand is inviting people to share what they do “with heart” for a chance to take their passions further and win exclusive Shangri-La prizes.

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