Eliza Sam Still Adapting to the Hong Kong Lifestyle

Eliza Sam (岑麗香) did not have much ambitions when she first joined the Miss Chinese International pageant in 2010, but as a graduating college student who was ready to test new boundaries, she was eager to try anything new.

“The pageant was a rare opportunity for me to try something I haven’t tried before. If I was lucky enough to reach the top ten, then I would be able to have stories to tell to my children. I would like to tell them that as long as you try, anything is possible.”

After winning the pageant, Eliza was given two options – leave or stay. Opportunities in the entertainment business come and go as quickly as the blink of an eye, and Eliza knew she had to come up with a decision, fast.

“Although I knew staying in Canada would give me a more stable and happier lifestyle, I would always be carrying that ‘what if’ scenario in the back of my head. That’s why I decided to stay,” said Eliza.


Stepping into her fourth year in Hong Kong, the Canadian-born Eliza still finds Hong Kong’s fast-paced subculture quite hard to adapt to. “Canada is a relaxing and easy-going place. For those likes us who are used to that kind of lifestyle, Hong Kong is not really suitable for us. It’s too fast and complicated.”

Eliza’s parents were originally against the idea of Eliza traveling to Hong Kong alone, but they had come to realize that the long distance is actually beneficial for Eliza’s developing independence. “They want me to seek new life experiences. They know I would regret it if I didn’t do it, so they didn’t stop me.” Eliza would return to Canada at least once a year to visit her family.

But Hong Kong is not at all as frightening and distant as it originally seemed. The 29-year-old has recently developed an interest in cooking Chinese dishes. “I’ve learned how to boil certain foods and how to cook soup. I’ve learned what it means to be ‘yit hei’ (heaty) and what food is suitable for what weather. Foreigners never really cared about these things, but I find it very refreshing. I get to learn more about Chinese culture.”

On why she ultimately chose to dab in showbiz, Elizza said, “I am a curious person. I love to learn new things. I was really worried when I first settled down in Hong Kong, but honestly, Hong Kong is not as scary as I thought. People are very kind; it’s just that they lead very stressful lives. If you are willing to ask questions, seniors will be very glad to help you out.” Eliza thanked her The Hippocratic Crush 2 <On Call 36小時II> costar, Him Law (羅仲謙), for helping her overcome challenges. The two have previously worked together on Eliza’s debut series, Divas in Distress <巴不得媽媽>.

Her Biggest Challenge

Unsurprisingly, the biggest obstacle for Eliza to overcome in her career is language. “I really didn’t know how to read the script at first, but now I’ve managed to read about half. I really don’t want to drag anybody down with me. These productions require team work and we all have our own parts to do. As long as you are willing to learn, every day is a lesson.”

Source: ihktv.com

This article is written by Addy for JayneStars.com.

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    1. Nope. I find that many actors who gain relative exposure are close to their 30s. For example, Fred Cheng just celebrated his 30th birthday and his career is finally taking off.

      1. Oh but my Linda BB is way more successful at 29 yrs old!!! :p Eliza won miss Chinese internal at 25 yrs old then? Damn that is old!!!! Linda won at 19!!!!

      2. True but Eliza finished her degree before competing in the pageant and is several months younger than Linda (:
        And I like them both.

      3. If Linda competed in pageants at the age of 25, I doubt she would have won since she would have grown out of her young adult face and into her true adult face. I like both personalities.

      4. You cant compare people’s journeys as competitions to determine their success in show bizz. That’s just silly. whether Eliza won at 25, or Linda won at 19, that doesn’t mean/determine anything. Artirsts’ who find success in the entertainment industry are already lucky enough. Longevitity of success is never a guarantee in such industry.

      5. Eliza just look like baby face at 29! She’s cute though. All Canadian girls this cute and sweet? However, my goddess will only be the one and only one … the one that won miss Chinese international 2004 🙂

      6. Clementine, sorry I wasn’t comparing them. Just surprised u can still enter beauty Pagaent at 25 yrs old. Yes both is lucky to be successful in this industry. Eliza will be very popular in a few more years.

      7. i think the age limit is 28 years? (well at least for miss HK i think) 25 isnt ‘too old’ to enter imo.

      8. yeh well most 19 year olds go to college and study. not all decide to strut around on stage in their bikinis and dream to become a star.

      9. @notasaint,
        Agreed, which makes me think that Eliza makes a better role model than Linda so far.

      10. Is Linda a drop out of college what is she doing on the stage at the age of 19 years old sh be at the college?

    2. Eliza should just go home. Having lived in HK for 4 years and still say she’s adapting, means she is a loser.

      Just leave, please. HK don’t need complainants like you.

      And your acting is bad, a disgrace to TVB, and all good artistes out there. You just add more negative image to this industry.

      There are so many talented artistes who can act out there, many veterans too, but they have not gotten the kind of ‘support’ and limelight from TVB as you have, but you blew it.

      I hate it when all you do is flash that silly smile of yours anywhere, everywhere, and showing that argumentative stubborn streak in all roles you play.

      Just get lost.

      1. There is just one word to describe your reply. Blind love, LOL.

        Such stupid reaction,…

      2. Oops, its blind worship, lol.

        Haven’t seen pretty girls before, so anyone with Eliza looks is like goddess to these people, worthy of being worshipped, hahahaha!

      3. It’s not that easy to adapt to new things. It’s not something that you can learn in two or three days. You have to learn how to speak the language that they’re speaking, culture, food & styles. Some people might take longer than others. Just give her some time or a chance maybe you’ll think differently about her. I think her acting skills are improving so that’s great!

      4. Being plain rude and immature is way worse than Eliza taking her time to adapt. What matters is that she is trying very hard. Do not judge people when you barely even know them.

      5. “Say no to Eliza”‘ have u been living in another country of a different culture? Especially from a Western to an Eastern. I did. From East to West.

        It is especiallt tough for a young adult girl to be in that sistuation, away from her family and doing it all by herself. It took me over 4 long years to adapt.

        So please do not judge.

      6. It is much harder to adapt to entertainment environments in a new country because of its funny hours of working, “too flexible” life style, too much temptation, too many competitive colleagues, and no family, relatives or close friends. On top of that, Eliza Sam had to learn the language (Chinese, verbal and written) to get by. I think she is doing great. At least she admits that it is hard for her to adapt to Hong Kong environments.

        As far as I could remember, Linda Chung had the same problems in the first 2 or 3 years in Hong Kong though she could speak quite a bit of Cantonese and read some Chinese characters before she came to Hong Kong.

      7. What’s wrong w u? First of all, if I’m not wrong, I rmbr I read an article about Linda Chung, she said its hard for her to adapt to HK life, she even has her mom or dad came live w her for a while to help her w the film scripts. I think Eliza is a lot better than those so called fadans like Christine kuo, oceana zhu etc. I, myself grew up in Canada and moved to US to live after got married and it took me good 2 yrs to adapt to the new life and got rid of homesick. If u think u r that good, put urself in her shoes and try.

      8. “Say no to Eliza says:
        November 29, 2013 at 7:56 am

        There is just one word to describe your reply. Blind love ”

        uh … by my count, blind love is two words, not one lol

      9. If I remember correctly, Bernice Liu also expressed that she experienced the same things (eg. cultural-language barrier, learning the language) when she first came to HK as Linda, Eliza, most fadans who came from Canada. 😛

      10. I’m kinda with you though not as harsh. I find alot of asian-american or asian-canadian actors/actresses head to asia because they basically aren’t talented enough (or have the same opportunities) in the west as they do in east. They go there (are unable to adjust) and yet make sh!tloads of money off of asian audiences and then move back to the west to find a white spouse and hide in obscurity when they’ve ‘had enough’ of fame so to speak. There are lot’s of talented people there already, why you need to import these folks is beyond me. I mean so many women competing for Miss Hong Kong over the years grew up in every where but HK (and in my opinion many were not good looking at all).

    3. she look like 20-23 to meeeee~ :DD she looks like a baby! nice tis mean she’s well preserved for this career :DD

  1. Don’t know why but the picture with this article made me realize how beautiful she can be… stunning!

    1. Eliza Sam is a very sweet and bubbling girl. She looks like she is very friendly and easy going.

      1. Sounds like sour grapes to me especially since you seem like a “social loser” who enjoys dissing people who took a chance on their life and did well.

  2. i really do not know as she not even beautiful at all… bubbly personality yes (i agree) but if said she pretty or beautiful is not at all

    1. i think she’s cute but not pretty. Her chin is a little weird in certain angles

      1. Her eyes are a little too close together, but she is still pretty and has a very friendly face. I like her simplicity and warmth.

    1. TVB is always biased.

      Even 4th and 5th runner-ups from Canada gets signed up.

      All you need is to be from Canada and HK.

      Look at Vivian Yeo. What roles she gets to play? All goes to that bimbo, Eliza.

      She’s from where? Yes, you got it right. from Canada ma.

      Malaysia, every yera has one in the top 3 or top 5, but no representation in TVB dramas.

      No, Clementine, you are dead wrong. It is not that the girls do not want to enter TVB. It is TVB do not allow them to enter.

      1. You could be right ……… TVB likes to sign girls up from Canada. Don’t know why though.

      2. Hongcouver!!!! Lol Awesome name!!! Hey I like Canada girls. Don’t know why they all so pretty!!! Is it the air? Environment? Weather? The food? Damn they are all HOT! I should vacation there one day.

      3. Nicholas
        Where are you from?

        If you plan to visit Canada, you should visit Vancouver. In a day, you can do fishing, sailing, golfing and skiing. If you have more time, drive north from Vancouver to the Canadian Rockies. They are just beautiful. They are the most beautiful scenic spots in Canada with snow-capped mountains as high as 10,000 ft., and lakes as beautiful as emerald (Emerald Lake).

      4. Canada is gorgeous from coast to coast. I loved Nova Scotia and New Brunswick. (: In comparison to the west coast, The eastern coast of Canada tends to be warmer during the summer and colder during the winter while western coast is moderate and rainy, depends on the season. but most people in vancouver call ourselves raincouver. XD

        this may help you: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pc-tVZq9a4Y (:

      5. Bubblez
        If it does not rain that much in Vancouver, Vancouver will be a paradise to live.

        I don’t mind to live in Calgary even it is a lot colder than Vancouver. I can drive to Banff every weekend (or long weekend). Banff is part of Canadian Rockies.

      6. Well I never minded the rain growing up. I loved it because at school, it would be an inside day xD

        But yes, my parents have told me how beautiful Banff/Rocky Mountains are 🙂

      7. Bubblez
        I watched your video clip. It is so cute. I thought it would be talking about the City of Vancouver! Now I know how to pronounce Vancouver as “Vangcouver”. Ha ha ….


      8. Live in the states. The first city I would visit is of course Vancouver (Linda’s hometown). I’m sure canada is a nice country. I saw it on TV during the Vancouver Olympics. People are friendly and more polite too. Thanks gals. I guess u guys from Canada? Must be quite pretty! 😉

      9. Your video link scare me! Not sure if I ‘m ready for rain everyday! Lol. That luongo can’t win Stanley cup from us at all. USA always win :p Sorry Linda I know u support your Canucks but that goalie needs to go!!!! Lol. Thanks for your cute video link.

      10. “TVB likes to sign girls up from Canada. Don’t know why though.”

        For English translators and/or a potential ticket into Canada (and out of Hong Kong).

      11. It is quite true ……….. TVB promoted Miss Chinese International winners more than Miss Hong Kong winners, e.g. Linda Chung, Fala Chen, Aimee Chan, Eliza Sam, Christine Kuo vs. Myolie Wu, Kate Tsui, etc.

      12. It’s a fact that MHK doesn’t do well in MCI. When was the last MHK wins MCI? Sonija!

        Years before, Txb already promotes MCI more than MHK. However in recent years, Txb tries to promote MHK more. Pity for Leanne Li and Ocean Zhu who I find pretty girls with a little promotions. (I find Leanne has more talents than Linda, just no luck).

      13. Wow, looks like so many Canadians here. Means many of the comments here are biased or slanted to western mentality.

        So what if Canada is such a nice,wonderful, beautiful place? It is still not your country as in historical and cultural perspective.

        You are still Asian and Canada is still gwailo,..

        And many Hongkies have come back to HK, and greater China for their careers, you can’t do that is laid back canada.

        Fishing, skiing, sailing… bla bla, all those things only retirees do, HK people will say, no ambition, no upward streak, just want to laze around, do nothing all day.

        That’s Canada for you. Waste your whole life to enjoy life, hehehe.

      14. “I find Leanne has more talents than Linda, just no luck.”

        Maybe her ugly bf/WCL has something to do with that?

      15. If you don’t like Canada, don’t choose to stay here. If you plan to stay in Canada, you will have to accept and like it.

        I agree that there are always pros and cons in every country, including Canada, the States, and Hong Kong. It is personal choice.

      16. Personally I think Linda Chung acts better, and Leanne Li looks prettier.

        There is one big advantage for Linda over Leanne, i.e. Cantonese. Leanne has taken too many years to improve her Cantonese. By the time her Cantonese got better, TVB had already recruited too many new and young beauty pageant winners.

        Fala Chen couldn’t speak much Cantonese when she went to Hong Kong, but her Cantonese has improved so much over the years, and not Leanne’s. Both Leanne and Fala were winners of MCI in 2005.

      17. I have the feeling that TVB want to let contestants from other countries to win MCI and let Miss Hong Kong take the 2nd place. After all, TVB is the host of MCI, and they want to act a little “classy”. In “question and answer” session, Miss Hong Kong usually can present herself better in Cantonese.

      18. Malaysian girls speak better cantonese than most canadian girls, some speak native cantonese so i wonder why belle theng wasnt signed up by TVB

      19. Vivian Yeo’s Cantonese is heavily accented. I have to wince everytime she speaks her line.

        This coming from a fellow Malaysian, who is also Cantonese speaking.

      20. I wouldn’t say Malaysian girls cannot speak perfect Cantonese, but their Cantonese is usually not the same Hongkong Cantonese. They speak with their own accents, same in English.

        At the same time, I won’t say Hongkongers speak perfect Cantonese or English. But if you live in Hongkong, you would rather listen to artistes speaking Hongkong Cantonese and English.

      21. actually, I don’t think Eliza’s parents are from hk, I read from Wikipedia that she is Viet-Chinese. No wonder

      22. So is Linda Chung’s family,who had never set foot in HK prior to her coming there.

      23. Most Malaysian girls have attitude problems. This could be the reason why TVB is not in favor of them.

    2. Lenna Lim (林家冰) and Denise Tan (陳楚寰) is with Astro (數碼私人有限公司), tvb’s equivalent in Malaysia.

  3. shes cute but not the most beautiful lol.

    she has alot of charisma and i think that is why she is so well liked.

    1. Agreed, I think her focus is in the right place (language and cultural barriers). This girl is in “high” demand for good reason (she has it all; beauty and charm). Hope she selects a good man/family.

  4. talking about eliza,i immediately think about cristine kuo,where is she? it seems tvb has frozen her,because of her fatness.she even didnt appear in tvb anniversary show,tvb is so mean.

    1. You are right. I did not see Christine Kuo at the Anniversary ceremony or in the nomination lists.

      1. Rebecca Zhu’s name was not in the list for “Most Improved Actress”. Surprised! She seemed to do well in “Always and Ever”.

        Eliza Sam must be privileged and highly promoted by TVB this year.

      2. After OC2 airs finish, I highly believe Eliza will be set to win Most Improved. Though I do think she has improved greatly, I think others on the list to take MI this year more than Eliza! But Eliza no doubt has been highly promoted this year. WHo knows!

    2. tvb told christine kuo to take a break so she can lose some weight. she will come back a NEW person lol

      1. People here say her weight is fine. I guess it is not accepted by TVB.

  5. Eliza is cute and sweet….I just can’t find a way to dislike her. .she has an aura..too.

  6. I think that eliza is great at acting. Her role In in on call suits her perfectly! Apparently she’s gonna die from cancer at the end! I hope not!!!

  7. Whether we like it or not! I think she will be the next myolie wu!!

  8. Many ex-pats are from HK who enjoy watching HK TV shows so there is a strong market for TVB to continue their sphere of influence through advertising and recruitment.

  9. Eliza Sam is born in canada at Vancouver she knows English very well anyway…………………………
    Also when she joined in the miss international pageant 2010 I was thinking that she would able to be part of tvb hong kong but the result is that was voted to become the first one can’t believe it……..:)

  10. The hippocractic crush she was quite good on the tv show episode but before her Cantonese wasn’t that good but now her Cantonese is starting to get better now GO ELIZA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!;)

  11. The main reason for Eliza Sam to be popular is that she is a likable actress, well accepted by Hongkong audience. She also works hard on her Cantonese (from no good to fluent) and her acting. She is a lot better than many other newbies (at least to me).

  12. The main thing is Eliza Sam is to let people know that is popular and perhaps she can do a bit more so people would think that she can be popular in hong kong and so that the people will know her………..and get to know her in all the tv episode……..

  13. I am with the minority here.. Although I agree that she is cute and likeable but I am getting tired of the bubbly, cute-sy, happy roles from her. Would like to see her truly take on more challenging roles in the future and better herself as an actress.

  14. When Eliza won the Miss Chinese Vancouver pageant I didn’t like her but now she’s growing on me. she’s so cute !! Woo Vancouverites ^_^

  15. Eliza jiayou because she is likeable. With that x element, the rest is hard work!!

  16. Waaaa…Eliza came in 4th for the top earner in 2013 beating the ugly, lowest paid for commercial ads queen Tavia, well done!

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