This is the web-adapted version of our June cover story on Pita "Tim", head of CEO Agrifood and his wife Chutima "Tye" Limjaroenrat, featuring online-exclusive photos.
At our photoshoot, though there is a nanny along for the ride, the crew were impressed as Tim and Tye took turns comforting their infant daughter, Pipim. As they schlepped in and out of Rolls-Royce Dawn and the Azimut Atlantis 43 – gorgeous machines, indeed – we asked: What are their plans, their dreams and hopes for little Pipim? Trilingualism, says Tye. Maturity and the ability to make choices, says Tim. But there’s more to their love story– as they divulge to Prestige.
First meeting: A first date in Venice, or three-strikes-and-you're-out?
Tye: Our first date was set for Paris. But he couldn’t get a visa in time. I thought to myself, “That’s one point taken away!” The second time, we were communicating and he suddenly disappeared for a week. It was like he completely disappeared. He had been in hospital – taken in by his friends, practically carried in, it was so severe. But that time, he chatted and called to explain. So I thought, “I’ll just observe for now.” I half-believed him, and half didn’t. The third time, we changed the location from Paris to Venice – he decided he would come just to see me, whereas before in Paris, he had had plans to meet friends. I was impressed that he came just for me.
Our date was set for the 26th, but on the day he called to say that his flight was cancelled. I thought, “Hey, is this guy a player? This is the third time!” But the next day he flew straight out to Venice. He even reserved a hotel to be close to where my crew was staying – just a three-minute walk away.” [laughs] Three times! Can you imagine?
Tim: At that time, she was making a movie with Grammy – Dear Galileo – a story that was filmed in London, Paris, Milan and then Venice. It was December 26 so I stopped over on a flight from Boston-Venice, Venice-Bangkok. We had been introduced through a common friend. The friend knew that I was travelling through Europe, so they connected us – otherwise, I would be a lone traveller, and she would be just working by herself. She’d be lonely, I’d be lonely – so we had something in common. Both Thais – how many Thais are you going to meet in Venice, and on Boxing Day too?
First impressions: digital or real-world?
Tye: Before we even met, we chatted online. We liked similar things: like travelling to Japan, dining out, watching movies – we had the same way of thinking. When we actually met, it was a just a regular dinner date, but he seemed to have surveyed the restaurant beforehand – I was so impressed. As if he had come by and checked out the ambience and the menu – and then brought me to it that evening. He seemed to be good at taking care of details. Although... when we went, we were looking at maps for a long time, and I wondered if it had been his first time there. [Tim replies, “It was a trick – strategic – so I could spend more time with her!”]
Tim: We clicked very well. As if I’d known her for a long time... We were having fish for dinner, and it was pretty much the first time I could be myself and I could open up. With work, it’s almost like you have to be in the zone all the time... almost like unintentionally having a face on all the time, as if you have to be strong all the time. You have to show that you’re a leader...
The first time when I talked to her, she was 20 years old. She was still in college, seven years younger. It was the first time I let my hair down and I could be a young man, a young guy once again. We talked about various things – parents, siblings, schools – she told me about the entertainment business, something I’d never known [about], being in the financial world. I told her what I had gone through – about work, life, finance, economics, public policy and politics.
Future: Social enterprise and social awareness
Tye: [I would like to work with] the Voice Foundation. In the news, I see animals being abused, and what I don’t understand is, the way the news is presented, it’s almost making the situation worse. The vicious abuse of animals – or abuse in general, of children, of women – I want to raise awareness, to awaken people’s consciences about this. Especially news of Little Gam [a young abuse victim recently in the news] – it’s already upsetting in general, and now that I have a daughter, I understand that – she too is someone’s daughter and her parents must be incredibly overwhelmed. I want people to have more of a conscience.
Tim: One day, if I’ve accomplished everything in my life, and I retire from everything, I want to be a teacher somewhere outside of Bangkok. I want to help someone grow. It’s a life blessing to help review and mentor someone. If you can teach someone or coach someone, for example.
I played squash a lot when I was younger – there’s the feeling to coach and teach someone to grow. It’s the kind of luxury that you cannot pay for. It’s something you must spend your time doing – and then you get that feeling.
Their daughter, Pipim: A mother and a father's hopes
Tye: I have to devote every single moment to taking care of her. I don’t sleep late and I don’t go out any more. It’s hard, but I do it wholeheartedly - anything to take care of her...
I want her to be a good person, have a soul, but at the same time, I want her to be strong. To be gentle on the outside, but strong on the inside – polite but tough – to be able to have a strong “immune system”, I suppose, to always see the world in a positive light.
Tim: We call this life – this is when you become an adult. You become a responsible parent. You’re tired but you’re happy... I hope [Pipim] has the capability to choose for herself, to do anything she wants. I want her to appreciate good food, enjoy good music, travel a lot. I want her to enjoy life to the fullest, and I would definitely support her in any possible way that I can: her endeavours and her journeys.
Photographer: Apichart Chaichulla
Stylist: Rangsan Chompoopol
Stylist assistant: Arrisa Arsanork and Satima Limpakanjanavah
Makeup artist: Purita Nununtakarn
Hair stylist: Paktheema Sakeeree
Art director: Kanda Charanawat