Bling Empire: The Real Reason Anna Shay Snubbed Christine Chiu

One of the central conflicts of Netflix’s Bling Empire, aside from how many pairs of designer shoes Kane Lim can fit onto one wall, is undoubtedly the rivalry between Anna Shay and Christine Chiu. From episode 1 of the hilarious and glitzy reality series — which follows “LA’s wildly wealthy Asian and Asian American fun seekers” as they shop, party-hop, and shop some more (via Netflix’s description) — it’s clear that we have a frenemy situation on our hands. Anna, the wealthiest of the bunch, finds herself getting into it with the “Couture Queen” and wife of Dr. Gabriel Chiu, Christine, on multiple occasions.

First, the pot-stirring Christine casually brings up that they both frequent the same penthouse suite in Paris. Then, of course, there was necklace-gate. Christine intentionally wears a Louis Vuitton necklace that she knew Anna also owned, resulting in Anna moving Christina’s seating at a dinner party to the very end of the table, per Esquire. When asked about the change-up, Anna downplayed the drama on-air. “Big deal. She shouldn’t trip over things like this,” she said. Can somebody pass the shade?

Yup, it’s great reality TV, because who doesn’t love watching a good-natured feud? It’s Flavor of Love‘s Pumkin and New York, but friendlier, and with… more diamonds. So why did Anna move Christine’s seat, arguably shifting their battle into overdrive, anyway? Their rivalry may be petty, but the question still stands. Scroll down to find out what Anna is now saying. 

Anna Shay said she 'didn't have time to deal with' Christine Chiu

So, why did Anna Shay move Christine Chiu’s seat? Anna told The Cut that she felt that necklace-toting Christine would be more “compatible” at the opposite end of the table. “Why did I move Christine [in episode one]? Because I was hosting and didn’t have the time to deal with her,” Anna explained in January 2021. “I saw where she was and knew she would not get along with the people next to her, because she asks unnecessary questions. And so I said [to my best friend] Maria, ‘Help, help.’ And so Maria just small talked with her.” On hosting, Anna added the key is to “ensure that a guest is compatible with the people to their right and their left.” 

As for the necklace that launched a thousand shades, Anna told Esquire, “I know the designer, actually quite well, of the high jewelry at Louis Vuitton during that time… And those two necklaces are not identical.” Fair enough! While Anna may have been provoking Christine, Anna didn’t start the chaos. She comes off as one of the most genuine characters on the show, giving gifts to cast members like Kevin Kreider, asking only for friendship in return. “Money isn’t everything and the most important things cannot be bought… just be happy and content with who you are,” Anna told The Cut. 

Here’s to these two finding peace in Season 2! 

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