Dorothy Wang traded her swanky digs and palm trees of Beverly Hills for fancy digs in the concrete jungle of the “Big Apple ” for Bling Empire New York. The Netflix reality series spins off from Bling Empire, following the billionaire heiress along with a new cast of Asian-Americans living in couture and jaw-dropping extravagance.
Among them is Wang’s “slaysian” bestie Tina Leung, a model, and blogger-influencer who makes her feel welcome. However, Wang finds out quickly that a new coast doesn’t mean she can escape the drama. Here the star dishes on life in a new city, dating, and more.
[Warning: The below contains spoilers for Bling Empire: New York]
Would you say Bling Empire prepared you for the Bling Empire: New York?
Dorothy Wang: I don’t know if the show prepared me for anything, per se. I got this show first and then because of this show, I had to film stuff for that show. It was more me appearing to build a little bit of continuation from my move from L.A. to New York.
You find out quickly that visiting New York and living there are two different things.
There were a lot of changes for me. I always knew I would love living in New York. Doing remedial tasks is a lot harder though. You get in your car and run all your errands in L.A. When I moved to New York my friends were like, “Dorothy, you’re a New York girl now. There is no joy in physically running your errands here. Get everything delivered.” I didn’t listen. I thought I was going to go to Bed Bath & Beyond to pick out trash cans and tissue boxes. It was honestly such a bad experience. Here it was a completely different experience than in Los Angeles. More than errands, the people are different. It’s not fluffy here. I realized that people are more no-nonsense. When they speak they have something to say. It’s just different.
Tina really opens up throughout the season about her upbringing as anxiety and past traumas come up in your trip to the Bahamas. There are a few moments during the trip where you really comfort her. How was it showing that different side?
I think Tina’s story is so powerful and so important to tell. It’s common in Asian culture to be hard on yourself. It’s great to be motivated and want to be successful, but I feel Asian children have struggled with harder, tougher upbringings. That can stifle. Sunflowers need sunshine and watering and love to blossom…I’m happy she was so open and vulnerable and can share her experience. I feel like people were almost surprised about the way I support her and that I’m so close to her. With people and having people around, I’m a slow burn. But if you’re my real friend I adore you. People often think I’m a cold-hearted b****. A lot of people you see on the show I’m meeting for the first time. I don’t necessarily open up and give my warmth and fuzzies to the people I just meet.
Things got a little tense between you and Richard Chang in regard to his charity event. How do you feel that panned out?
I just think at the time we were overwhelmed. We had just moved and had a lot of stuff to do. We all were filming the show and had projects to work on. He was constantly, persistently, asking us for things, and it just kind of got irritating and felt so much so soon. It became more than attending. [cast member] Lynn Ban had donated a purse that I had bought. We are there to support each other, but I do think there sometimes needs to be a limit on how much you call on others. I just think there is a limit. Not that I don’t think you should be supportive as a friend. I do. But then it became Dorothy, Richard, and Lyn’s charity event when you ask so much.
What did you take from entering the dating pool in New York? You did find some success with Ari.
I think dating in New York is a lot of fun. For me, it’s a different group of people. I think the guys in New York are different from guys in L.A. It was fun to meet new people. For me, dating isn’t always my number one priority but people love to watch. It has haunted me since Rich Kids [of Beverly Hills] because they want to see Dorothy on dates. There are so many things I can film, but people love watching people date. They are obsessed with a love story and can relate to it. None of my dates were necessarily that bad on and off camera. I’m not necessarily a huge dater though. I’ve tried to be more of a dater since being in New York.
There are times it feels a little like Sex in the City. Where are you guys today?
This is one I’ll say wait and see what happens. Maybe season 2? Hopefully, this time it won’t take as long.
Why was there a delay in Bling Empire: New York coming out compared to Bling Empire?
I think Netflix is very meticulous when they want to drop certain things. It was supposed to come out sooner, but that was around the holidays. I like when things come out soon as possible, but I do feel it came out at the right time. It fell in line with the Chinese New Year. I think it is kind of aligned with our biggest cultural holiday of the year. I think everything happens for a reason.
Do you finally have blinds in your loft?
I do! But only in one room. When I do have friends coming to stay with me I warn them I do provide masks but don’t provide blinds in the guest house.
What do you hope to see if there is a season 2?
I actually really hate filming conflicts and fights and sitting down arguing or having boring long lunches. The thing I want to do is fish-out-of-water experiences. I would love to do The Simple Life and little tasks. Tina and I floated the idea of working at Mrs.Fields and Cinnabon or taking a part-time job at a pizza shop in New York City. I like to do activities while we film. So I would like to see that.
Bling Empire New York season 1 is streaming on Netflix