Earlier this year, the world’s first social lounge opened right in the centre of Kuala Lumpur and it’s different from any other bars that you have been to. Founded in 2011 in Sapporo, Japan, the founder of JIS realised that it was difficult to meet new people in the city. As an Asian, it’s not in our culture to strike up a conversation with any random strangers. So with a quick brainstorm session, the founder hosted dinner parties to change this whole situation and it actually worked.
From Japan, JIS is now introduced to KL-ites and it’s going to change our nightlife scene for the better.
We had the chance to speak to Cornelius Lu, the founder of Cheers2Cheers by JIS Kuala Lumpur and learned a little more about his background, his thoughts about the nightlife in Malaysia and more.
For the unfamiliar, Cheers2Cheers is JIS Kuala Lumpur’s very own drink delivery platform that offers its guests the same in-house experience through its vast array of unique alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks selections. Thanks to their in-house mixologist, they also offer new creatively-crafted cocktails just to provide its guests with an immersive drinking experience from the comfort of their own home.
Born and raised in Kuala Lumpur, Cornelius went to St John’s Institution for both his primary and secondary education then furthered his education at UCLA and Columbia College Hollywood. As a kid, he always had an interest in the entertainment industry and eventually, he did become a part of it — proving that the saying of turning your dreams into reality can come true.
When asked about the nightlife in Malaysia, he shared, “In my opinion, it can be much better.”
“The nightlife in Malaysia is generally not as sophisticated as in the West. Nevertheless, it is varied and acceptable to the people of this country.”
Those who are interested to know what JIS Kuala Lumpur is all about especially for first-timers should note that it is absolutely important to socialise as it is a part of healthy living and to maintain a healthy society. Although city life can be very stressful at times, people really need to relax by unwinding themselves. It can either be over a good meal or cocktail.
If you assume that JIS is a dating bar, then you are quite wrong. It is actually a safe place where people come to gather, both friends and also strangers.
So how does it really work?
When you have arrived, the host will come to you and ask if you’d like to take part in their unique social lounge system. If the answer is yes, all you have to do is tell the host your preference and they’ll pair you up with someone or a group that matches your choice.
Once seated, guests would only need to pay a small rate to enjoy 300 choices of complimentary drinks (alcoholic and non-alcoholic) and food that is served at JIS. During that same time, you’ll be introduced to someone or a group of people in order for both parties to socialise. If they both approve, then the host will seat you together. And that’s basically it.
JIS is all about connecting its guests with the same-minded people which can help them grow their circle or connection from there.
Get to know Cornelius
What are the most unforgettable memories and unspeakable challenges that you have faced in your career?
There have been too many unforgettable challenges in my life. However, I have accepted them all as part of my life. I think the most remarkable achievement is my ability to combine the entertainment industry with private life. This has helped many to lead a normal life.
How do you cope with rejection?
Rejection is a part of growing and people may find it difficult to accept your values and ideas. It will be good to accept and as they may intend to inform us something. Every rejection is a lesson to learn. The best is to look at things positively.
How did your parents influence you to be the person that you are today and what lessons and values can you share with us?
My parents have been my idols. They have taught me the importance of being honest to myself and to all others in any situation and they have instilled in me the respect to all whom I meet irrespective of their social status. They have also imparted the values of hard work and determination that are important for success.
What advice would you give to those who have a passion in the same industry as you?
The entertainment industry is fast-expanding and daily new inventions and forms are introduced. And, one has to learn fast to stay relevant in the industry. Besides, one has to be creative so that one’s work is special and accepted as new.
What makes you excited when you get to work?
When I meet challenges, these make me think out-of-the-box to find solutions. At the same time, be patient and use time economically to achieve the most each day. My life mantra is “there is nothing in this world that can trouble you more than your own thoughts” so I have to keep my thoughts clean.
How do you stay true to yourself and what’s your definition of success?
I have to be honest to myself and to those I meet to earn their respect. My definition of success is discussions are better than arguments because an argument is to find out who is right but a discussion is to find out what is right.
JIS Kuala Lumpur
Hours: 5pm – 12am, daily
Address: Unit 3-01, 3rd Floor, Star Boulevard, Jalan Yap Kwan Seng, 53300 Kuala Lumpur