BEING blessed with good looks certainly does have its perks.
Just ask leggy Malaysian model Amber Chia, 27.
The first-time homeowner proved to be the darling of several companies, which eagerly rushed to sponsor the furniture for her new home in Kuala Lumpur.
The luxury three-storey house set Amber back by about RM2 million ($833,682).
But less than half of the RM500,000 spent on renovation and furnishing came from her own pocket.
Various companies sponsored up to RM300,000 worth of household and interior decor goods.
They included the wardrobe, sofa set, bedroom suite, security system, windows, lightings and electronic goods.
The local media was treated to a rare glimpse of her lifestyle when she invited journalists into her home recently.
Her home looks like a museum for her shopping coups.
Guang Ming Daily reported that stepping into Amber's dressing room is like stepping into a clothing store.
Her clothes are housed in a huge floor-to-ceiling walk-in wardrobe.
Amber said extensive collection of outfits was a big headache for her when she was living in the previous home, a condominium apartment.
The wardrobe there was one-tenth the size of the current one.
|Amber showing off her new bedroom suite (top picture) and wardrobe (above), with ample room for her collection of shoes and accessories.
Because she couldn't display the garments properly, she resorted to folding them and stacking them in piles.
Each time she looked for an outfit, she had to dig through the piles. She ended having to fold the clothes again after the rummaging.
It was a tedious exercise that easily took her about five to six hours each time, she said.
'Now I finally have my dream wardrobe,' said Amber. 'It really saves me a lot of time and effort.'
Apart from clothes, the model gives Imelda Marcos some stiff competition with her collection of some 320 pairs of shoes.
She houses them in a separate room together with her bags.
Currently, Amber shares her new home with her two sisters.
Asked if a man might be moving in anytime soon, the model jokingly said she was still looking for the right man.
She added that her future husband would definitely have to provide her with an even bigger wardrobe than the one she now has.
The Ipoh-born woman grew up in Sabah and started modelling at the age of16.
Her big break came four years ago when she was picked as the face of Guess Watches in a 2004 global contest by the fashion label.
Since then, Amber has bagged various accolades such as being among the top five of FHM Malaysia's list of 100 sexiest women in 2005.
And she is a hit with retailers.
To date, she has endorsed more than 10 brands of products, making her the most bankable model in Malaysia.
In Singapore, she acted as Mark Lee's girlfriend in a MediaCorp Channel 8 drama called What Is Love and is on the lookout for more acting opportunities.
This article was first published in The New Paper on July 29, 2008.