SINGAPORE -

There's been an air of mystery surrounding the Malaysian company that aims to build a destination casino resort in Miami.

VIDEO: Local 10's Christina Vazquez sits down with Genting Group chairman

It seemed to come out of the blue, investing nearly half a billion dollars in property at and around the Miami Herald building in downtown Miami. 

Local 10 wanted to know more about the company, which often points to its destination casino resort in Singapore as a model for what it wants to bring to Biscayne Bay.

Local 10 thought the best way to do that is go there itself, bringing viewers halfway around the world. Local 10's Christina Vazquez flew nearly 11,000 miles over two days and several time zones to travel to Singapore in Southeast Asia. 

She toured the resort and discovered how the debate that ensued in Singapore closely mirrors what is happening right now in Florida. 

When she returned, she sat down with the company's current chairman at the property it now owns, the Hilton Omni in downtown Miami. Click here to watch more of that interview and to read excerpts.

The company may come from a part of the world many South Floridians have never seen, but it turns out the patriarch of this family-run business, the son of a vegetable seed salesman, achieved what many would call "The American Dream."  Despite having no formal education, the founder of what is now The Genting Group established a multibillion-dollar business following years of hard work, tenacity and perseverance. 

PHOTOS: Genting Group History

As Vazquez greeted K.T. Lim, he revealed how this would be one of just a handful of television interviews ever granted in the company's nearly 50-year history. 

"Typically, the low-profile way of getting things done is very much an Asian sort of culture," explained Lim. "So what is more important to us is talk less and do more, so the end result is important rather than try to boast of what one is capable of doing, so the end result should speak for itself." 

Local 10 began the interview talking to Lim about his late father, Lim Goh Tong, the founder of Genting Group. 

"It would surely be a rags to riches sort of story. It is amazing what he's done," he said.

K.T. Lim spoke warmly of his father. 

Lim Goh Tong was born in a rural Chinese village, one of seven children. At just 16, Lim Goh Tong had to leave school to provide for his family after the death of his father, a vegetable seed salesman. 

A few years later, with $175 in his pocket, Lim left his native China for Malaysia. 

"He did not have any formal education," K.T. Lim said. "Pretty much when he arrived in Malaysia, it was through what one would call the school of hard knocks, and that is what made him the practical person that he is." 

In his autobiography, "My Story," Lim Goh Tong described himself as a "country bumpkin" who was "shy, introvert and sensitive." His first obstacle, he stated, was overcoming being bashful. 

Lim Goh Tong eventually wound up in scrap metal and hardware trading before launching his own construction company in 1951. He later won several engineering contracts with the government. 

While at a job site, enjoying the crisp air of the country's mountainside, he had a simple idea, a thought, really, that would unwittingly launch an empire. He wanted to build a vacation spot on a cool hillside, about 6,000 feet above the tropical heat of Malaysia's valley, close to its capital, Kuala Lumpur. 

"He found this piece of jungle outside the capital city and has developed it into over 20 million visitors have visited the resort," his son said. 

Lim Goh Tong wrote of the project, "The Genting project basically fitted my idea of an ideal business: No one was interested in it, which meant no competition."

Click here to read excerpts from Lim Goh Tong's autobiography.

K.T. Lim said his mom came up with the name for what would be his first destination casino resort. 

She called it, "Genting," K.T. Lim said, which is Mandarin for "above the cloud."