Monday, December 26, 2011

Nicky Cheng: Malaysian designer shines in New York

Backstage peek: Cheng showing Shields’ dressing room at the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre in New York.

NEW YORK: Malaysian interior designer Niki Cheng can now add Hollywood actress Brooke Shields as one of her many fans.

Cheng decorated the backstage room for the star who is now taking the lead female role in the Broadway play, The Addams Family, being staged at the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre here.

“Yes, I did Brooke Shields' backstage dressing room and also gave furniture from my store for the dressing room,” she said.

Apparently, the Lipstick Jungle star had screamed in delight when she first saw how the dressing room had been refurbished.

Cheng and her husband own BoConcept New York which offers a wide range of customised and affordable furniture and accessories.

They are making a mark on New York's urban lifestyle despite the stiff competition and constantly changing consumer taste.

Born and raised in Tanjung Tualang, Perak, Cheng attended Ungku Omar Polytechnic in Ipoh. She also obtained a diploma in interior design from the Malaysian Institute of Art.

“My background in designing combined well with my husband's business acumen, resulting in a fast-growing and highly successful BoConcept venture.

“Business has increased 10-fold and we have eight stores in the New York region now,” she said.

Her Taiwanese husband Shaokao Cheng was raised in Japan but educated in the United States where he obtained a Masters degree in electrical engineering from John Hopkins University.

Eventually, the husband-and-wife team decided to establish BoConcept New York, which is part of a retail furniture chain in Denmark.

The Danish group, according to Cheng, has established 340 outlets in more than 50 countries.

Cheng seems to have impressed her clients with her humility. She has used many platforms along with her husband to showcase their products, television being one of them.

BoConcept New York's furniture has been featured on shows such as NBC's The Apprentice, Bravo's Queer Eye for the Straight Guy and Kathy Griffin: My Life on the D-List.

In 2009, BoConcept New York was honoured by the City of New York as the recipient of the Neighbourhood Achievement Award, Small Business of the Year for improving the neighbourhood and its commitment to the community.

*Taken from NST Online

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