Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Chua

Christopher Chua

Managing Director, BLINK Design Group

BLINK's managing director Christopher Chua finds deep satisfaction in seeing a design job through from concept to completion, and he relishes being a designer who can turn his hand to architecture in all its shapes and forms. "For me the thrill is being faced with a fresh challenge and the chance to apply my knowledge in different ways. From tented naturalist villas to cool urban chic hotels, from minimalist to opulent, every project is a signature within itself.” Mr. Chua’s intelligent understanding of space and his instinctive feel for design make him the most valued of creative talents: a highly skilled, unfettered yet disciplined mind. He is at one with his craft, living and breathing hotels and resorts to produce work that resonates and inspires. During nine years as an associate with Singapore’s eco.id, Mr. Chua worked on resorts at the farther reaches of luxury, including The Shangri-La Saadiyat Beach, Abu Dhabi; Nikki Beach Resort, Qatar; The Saladaeng Residences, Bangkok; and TAJ Vivanta resorts in Assam and Chennai. He has developed a deep understanding of the symbiosis between branding and design. Since joining BLINK, he has unleashed the full force of his creativity in India and China, and has been instrumental in the company's Shanghai office launch and subsequent rapid growth in China. Mr. Chua’s ability to develop relationships with clients also applies to his team, which totals almost 200 people in four studios from Bangkok to Singapore, New Delhi and Shanghai. He achieves results because he motivates those around him, inspiring them with his vision, leading by example and developing a strong bond with existing clients while being instrumental in winning new ones.

Mr. Chua can be contacted at +65 9273 4098 or christopher.c@blinkdg.com

Coming up in March 2019...

Human Resources: An Era of Transition

Traditionally, the human resource department administers five key areas within a hotel operation - compliance, compensation and benefits, organizational dynamics, selection and retention, and training and development. However, HR professionals are also presently involved in culture-building activities, as well as implementing new employee on-boarding practices and engagement initiatives. As a result, HR professionals have been elevated to senior leadership status, creating value and profit within their organization. Still, they continue to face some intractable issues, including a shrinking talent pool and the need to recruit top-notch employees who are empowered to provide outstanding customer service. In order to attract top-tier talent, one option is to take advantage of recruitment opportunities offered through colleges and universities, especially if they have a hospitality major. This pool of prospective employees is likely to be better educated and more enthusiastic than walk-in hires. Also, once hired, there could be additional training and development opportunities that stem from an association with a college or university. Continuing education courses, business conferences, seminars and online instruction - all can be a valuable source of employee development opportunities. In addition to meeting recruitment demands in the present, HR professionals must also be forward-thinking, anticipating the skills that will be needed in the future to meet guest expectations. One such skill that is becoming increasingly valued is “resilience”, the ability to “go with the flow” and not become overwhelmed by the disruptive influences  of change and reinvention. In an era of transition—new technologies, expanding markets, consolidation of brands and businesses, and modifications in people's values and lifestyles - the capacity to remain flexible, nimble and resilient is a valuable skill to possess. The March Hotel Business Review will examine some of the strategies that HR professionals are employing to ensure that their hotel operations continue to thrive.