If you haven’t fallen down the glamorous rabbit hole that is Netflix’s Bling Empire, you’re missing out on some juicy drama. The reality show follows a group of super wealthy Asians living in Los Angeles (think Crazy Rich Asians IRL) as they navigate their close-knit social scene and find extravagant ways to spend their fortunes.
The first episode sets up an intense rivalry between Anna Shay, the daughter of a weapons billionaire, and Christine Chiu, whose husband is a direct descendant of the Song dynasty. During Christine’s over-the-top Chinese New Year party where she shuts down Rodeo Drive (casual), the two spar over jewels, parties, and hotel suites. As castmate and fellow millionaire heir Kane Lim points out: “Fuck, there can’t be two queens!”
Ahead, meet the cast of the binge-worthy show.
Dubbed by Kane as the “Queen of Beverly Hills,” Chiu co-owns Beverly Hills Plastic Surgery with her husband Dr. Gabriel Chiu. Known for her love for haute couture and fine jewelry, Christine spares no expense and loves to wear her crown—literally, as she wears a couple throughout the show. The Chius are also philanthropists: They donated $1 million to the Cayton Children’s Museum in honor of Baby G’s first birthday, and even worked with Prince Charles to create The Prince’s Foundation Chiu Health and Wellness Programmes and Center in Scotland.
The elusive heiress begins the season with a casual trip to Paris to celebrate castmember Kelly Mi Li’s birthday (more on that trip later). Chartering a private jet is no biggie for Shay, who is the daughter of billionaire and Pacific Architects and Engineers founder Edward Shay. Anna comes from Japanese and Russian descent and has one child, a son named Kenny Kemp who appears in the show. According to Buzzfeed, Kemp is an “avid stoner” and owns a bong collection worth millions.
Lim hails from Singapore but moved to LA to chart his own path from the family business, which includes oil, gas, and real estate. According to Voyage LA, Kane started investing as a teenager and eventually created his own business, Kix Capital. “My core focus right now is to grow the investment arm for my family,” Lim explained to the publication. “Back in Thailand, we have commercial real estate ranging from shopping malls to office buildings. In Los Angeles, I’m in the process of doing some residential deals and commercial ones in the future.” Lim is best friends with castmate Kevin Kreider and loves to collect designer shoes. His hilarious one-liners and friendly persona make him a cast favorite.
Kelly is a self-made entrepreneur and dating Andrew Gray; their relationship is one of the show’s more tumultuous storylines. During Anna’s surprise trip to Paris for Kelly’s birthday, Andrew blows up after Kelly leaves him while he’s sleeping to go shopping. The couple remain on and off throughout the season, though Andrew moves out of Kelly’s home. It’s unclear if they’re still together (there are no recent photos on Instagram), but Bustle points out that Kelly is a partner at Andrew’s new clothing line. Do with that information what you will.
The odd one out of the group, Kevin does not come from money and was adopted from Korea and raised by a white family in Pennsylvania. The abs-flashing model is constantly in awe of his wealthy friends, tagging along to glamorous events and learning more about Asian culture. Bling Empire creator Jeff Jenkins told Oprah magazine that Kevin was introduced to the group by Kelly one year before filming. “That year gave Kevin this wonderful sandbox time of playing and getting to know everybody and getting to form his own opinions, his own attitudes, and his own friendships or rivalries,” he said.
Described by Kane as “Asia’s Calvin Harris,” Kim is a famous DJ in Southeast Asia and known to draw crowds of 50,000. Kim’s parents divorced when she was a child and she was raised in California by her Vietnamese mother and French stepfather. Before becoming a DJ, Kim worked as a model and appeared on international covers for GQ, Maxim, and Esquire.
Cherie is the heiress to a denim empire (Kane describes her uncle as the “godfather of denim”) and has two children, Jadore and Jevon. During a confessional, Cherie reveals that she was previously signed to Sony Music Label and was primed to become a pop star in Japan, but her late mother did not approve of her plans and wanted Cherie to be a doctor or a lawyer. Throughout the show, Cherie grapples with the loss of her mother and securing a proposal from her boyfriend Jessey, who owns a furniture empire.
At 22, Jamie is the youngest cast member and the daughter of cybersecurity technology billionaire Ken Xie. A regular at fashion week, Jamie works as an influencer and tracks her outfits and travels on Instagram and Youtube. Before becoming an influencer, Jamie was an accomplished equestrian and almost made a career out of it before realizing her love for fashion.
Watch Bling Empire on Netflix