Longines recently opened its first boutique in Penang, its fourth location in Malaysia. We had the opportunity to attend the grand opening of this new space on the ground floor of premier shopping mall, Gurney Plaza. We also met the multi-talented Aaron Kwok — famed actor, singer and dancer — who has been a brand ambassador for the watchmaker since 2005.
Hailed as “the Michael Jackson of Hong Kong”, Kwok performs sold-out shows worldwide. It is difficult to imagine that this handsome, suave and incredibly fit man is 54.
Proving to be more than just a pretty face, Kwok has taken on many serious acting roles and garnered numerous awards. He was named best leading actor at the 2005 Golden Horse Awards for his first film Divergence and won the Hong Kong Film Award for Best Actor for his role in Project Gutenberg in 2018.
We met him at the E&O Hotel for a media interview before the grand opening of the Longines boutique. Kwok is known for always dressing to the nines. He was wearing his favourite watch: the latest Longines HydroConquest in stainless steel and ceramic. The sunray blue dial of the new model and his striped suit made an effortless combination.
Options: Have you been to Penang before?
Aaron Kwok: This is my first time here. I’m looking forward to trying some Malaysian food, like the very famous Penang char kuey teow and durian. I told my friends that I would come to Penang for a few days, and they recommended some very good food. Last night, I tried a Chinese restaurant with my crew, and the food was very good. The sauces are different, but it’s very tasty. Sometimes, when you travel to places and try the Chinese food, it has a very strong taste, so you have to drink lots of water. But, yesterday, no — after I finished my dinner, I was very satisfied. I like durian but when I asked for it last night, they said it’s not in season. I missed it! Maybe next time I will return just for a vacation and try again.
What do you have in common with Longines?
Longines was founded in 1832 and the DNA has always been timeless elegance. For work or my lifestyle, I like elegance. It’s how you present your attitude to the public or even family. I think it’s both the inside and outside — outside is your look and inside is your experience. So, together, in and out, you have to present elegance. Not just in the way you move, but also the way you think.
I have been a Longines ambassador since 2005. Actually, I have experienced many great moments since then. I love to promote its tagline, ‘Elegance is an attitude’. Every moment is wonderful with Longines. Whenever I wear my Longines watch, I can share the elegance with my fans. I love it. I’m part of the Longines family.
You’ve been performing for many years. Do you still feel the same energy every time you go on stage?
I have a lot of energy. I try to work out every day, 30 minutes of cardio and 30 minutes of body training. I have a rule for myself: I have to keep my body in very good condition, and then I can project good energy into my work. I am not young. I’m 54 years old, and I have two daughters. So, that’s why I need a lot of energy to keep up with it all.
When your children watch you perform, what do they think?
My younger daughter is too young; she’s seven months old. The older daughter is almost two years old. My wife brought her to my concert and she supported me, waving neon lights, saying ‘Hello, Daddy’ and dancing. She tries to learn the dances. My recent birthday was very special because she sang the Happy Birthday song for me. It was very sweet.
Having achieved success very early on, what keeps you motivated still?
Even though I have a lot of achievements, I tell myself it’s not enough. I give myself a lot of space to improve. That’s why I think, don’t look back, just look forward in your life, work, everything. This is part of Longines. The attitude. I will keep moving forward and keep doing something different. Something that I’ve never done before.
This article first appeared on Feb 17, 2020 in The Edge Malaysia.