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 February 2018...

Social Media: Engagement is Key

There are currently 2.3 billion active users of social media networks and savvy hotel operators have incorporated social media into their marketing mix. There are a few Goliath channels on which one must have a presence (Facebook & Twitter) but there are also several newer upstart channels (Instagram, Snapchat &WeChat, for example) that merit consideration. With its 1.86 billion users, Facebook is a dominant platform where operators can drive brand awareness, facilitate bookings, offer incentives and collect sought-after reviews. Twitter's 284 million users generate 500 million tweets per day, and operators can use its platform for lead generation, building loyalty, and guest interaction. Instagram was originally a small photo-sharing site but it has blown up into a massive photo and video channel. The site can be used to post photos of the hotel property, as well as creating Instagram Stories - personal videos that disappear from the channel after 24 hours. In this regard, Instagram and Snapchat are now in direct competition. WeChat is a Chinese company whose aim is to be the App for Everything - instant messaging, social media, shopping and payment services - all in a single platform. In addition to these channels, blogging continues to be a popular method to establish leadership, enhance reputations, and engage with customers in a direct and personal way. The key to effective use of all social media is to find out where your customers are and then, to the fullest extent possible, engage with them on a personal level. This engagement is what creates a personal connection and sustains brand loyalty. The February Hotel Business Review will explore these issues and examine how some hotels are successfully integrating social media into their operations.