In 1926, Chan Fu Cheung and his father Chan Yam Kwok founded the Luk Hoi Tong Co., Ltd. (LHT). Today, Jeffrey Chan and his son Darrell Chan (M.Arch ’04) continue to oversee the family-owned development company as Vice Chairman and Executive Director, respectively.
The company currently holds a property portfolio that includes retail and commercial office properties throughout the Hong Kong region such as the one recently developed at 31 Queen’s Road Central: the award-winning 29-storey, 190,000sf mixed-used commercial development, LHT Tower.
The company also currently operates the Gloucester Luk Kwok Hotel in Wanchai. Originally opening its doors in 1933, the hotel has been the home away from home for numerous UC Berkeley leaders, becoming, in the words of CED Dean Jennifer Wolch, “an invaluable “Cal Hub” for campus because of the incredible generosity and hospitality of the Chans and their hotel staff.”
Jeffrey and Helen Chan, along with Darrell and his wife Jamie Ho (M.Arch ’04) are a unique example of how generations have come together to support CED and the larger UC Berkeley community.
As UC Berkeley Foundation Trustees, Jeffrey and Helen Chan have welcomed notable Berkeley chancellors, provosts, deans, professors, and Nobel laureates. They also keep in close contact with the Berkeley Alumni Club in Hong Kong in addition to contributing to CED. “It’s been a great experience and an honor for me,” said Jeffrey Chan.
Jeffrey Chan always had a great passion for architecture. Perhaps it was this influence that led his son Darrell to pursue a degree at CED with knowledge that the college was a leader among all US schools in areas of urban planning and sustainable design research.
In his role as Executive Director of LHT, Darrell believes that successful urban architecture must stem fundamentally from human-focused and pedestrian-oriented urban design principles. He has applied his design philosophy most recently in the development of LHT Tower.
“Because the site is so prominent in Central, it was important to us that this project made a special architectural statement to build a new history for this public part of the city,” said Chan who is also LEED AP. “We care very much about the principals of sustainability and good urban design, so it was important that the new building also enhance its surrounding neighborhood and public spaces.”
Recently, Darrell accepted a position on the CED Dean’s Advisory Council—a select group of alumni and friends who serve as ambassadors, provide strategic planning advice to the dean, and encourage gifts to the college.
As an Advisory Council member living in Hong Kong, Darrell explains that one of his goals is to help CED set up a vibrant social and professional network of CED and Berkeley alumni in Hong Kong and surrounding regions. In July of this year, Darrel co-hosted with Darrin Woo a CED alumni gathering in Hong Kong at the famous Gaucho restaurant on the 5th floor of the stunning LHT Tower. The event was an opportunity for Berkeley and CED alumni, and friends to share ideas and build a dynamic social community in Hong Kong.
Darrell adds, “Given the massive scale of urban development we witness here in Asia, I believe CED has a role to contribute in this part of the world through its research and the design talents of both its faculty and its students.”
The Chan family has supported the college in numerous ways, contributing to the CED Annual Fund, the Campaign for Wurster Hall, and establishing The Jeffrey and Helen Chan Faculty Excellence Fund, an endowment that supports faculty research innovation and excellence.
“We’ve been extremely fortunate to have the support of the Chan family through their roles as Trustees, Advisory Council member, and donors,” says CED Dean Jennifer Wolch. “We are also deeply honored by their gracious hospitality in Hong Kong and generous commitment to the university’s community in Asia.”