A dynamic and hands-on leader, Roy Liang brings a wealth of experience to the role. Roy’s impressive track record in the hospitality industry includes seven years of experience specializing in high profile launch projects across Southeast Asia. His most recent position before joining Oakwood Premier OUE Singapore was General Manager at The Ascott Limited’s award-winning brand – Somerset Serviced Residence Liang Court and Bencoolen in Singapore, where he was instrumental in ensuring the consistent, outstanding performance of both properties.
Prior to this, Roy was able to pursue his ambition to develop international experience through overseas management roles at Somerset, including Residence Manager at Somerset properties in Jakarta and Kuala Lumpur. Having spent two years in each city, Roy built strong personal leadership skills. During his term in Malaysia, he successfully led the pre-opening of two Somerset properties – Nusajaya Johor and Petaling Jaya. In Jakarta, Roy was responsible for leading the general management of the Somerset Grand Citra, Jakarta, spearheading the planning and renovation process of the property.
In his role at Oakwood Premier OUE Singapore, Roy will apply his invaluable international standards, efficiency and passion for the industry to the role – a passion which developed during his student days at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore. He graduated in 2010 with a Bachelor in Business, majoring in Tourism and Hospitality Management, and was awarded with the CapitaLand Tourism and Hospitality Management Scholarship. Upon graduation, he stepped straight into his career by joining the CapitaLand Graduate Development Program as a Management Executive.
Always striving to maintain a work-life balance, Roy enjoys playing badminton in his spare time, as well as traveling with his wife to experience new destinations. In his downtime, Roy loves reading and watching documentaries. A Singaporean, Roy is fluent in English, Mandarin, Cantonese, Bahasa Melayu and Bahasa Indonesia.
We recently interviewed Roy and talked about his role, passion and plans.
- How did you get started in the hospitality industry?
My passion for the hospitality industry started all the way back in university where I studied hospitality administration and management, and was frequently involved in the Tourism and Hospitality Management club on campus.
Upon graduation, I began from the ground-up, working in the housekeeping team and learning the ropes at the front desk and concierge with an established serviced apartment. This experience helped me gain a holistic perspective and a comprehensive understanding of the ins and outs of running a property, which is helpful even till this day.
- Which were the organisations you worked for before you became the GM of Oakwood Premier OUE Singapore?
Prior to joining Oakwood Premier OUE Singapore, I was General Manager at The Ascott Limited’s award-winning brand – Somerset Serviced Residence Liang Court and Bencoolen in Singapore. I previously also held management roles in Jakarta’s Somerset Grand Citra, spearheading the planning and renovation process of the property, and Malaysia, where I led the pre-opening of two Somerset properties – Nusajaya Johor and Petaling Jaya.
- In your opinion what makes Oakwood Premier OUE Singapore a special place to stay?
At Oakwood Premier OUE Singapore, we wanted to create an atmosphere of a ‘luxurious sanctuary in the city’ for our residents. This is achieved through ensuring quality at every level from furnishing to lifestyle offerings and F&B.
Design and Furnishing
Each area is designed to frame and bring out the essence of the space, with the use of geometry and specially curated furniture and carpets. The mixture of materials creates a distinctive atmosphere and a feeling of a space that is both luxurious yet comfortable. This design language was carried through from the common spaces to the intimate guestrooms, where colour schemes were kept consistent, and furniture was specially customized to suit the overall design scheme. Artwork from established artists from around the world have also been incorporated in the key spaces around the property such as the lobby, restaurant and walkways to add a touch of sophistication to the environment.
State of the Art Facilities and Amenities
We offer a comprehensive range of premium facilities to help guests maintain a work-life balance during their stay. These include The Oakwood Executive Club lounge, a contemporary lobby bar, an Outdoor Infinity Pool and jacuzzi, The Fitness Centre by Oakwood, an outdoor barbeque, an Executive Boardroom with meeting facilities, a Residents’ Lounge, and more, all managed by our team at Oakwood Premier OUE Singapore.
In addition, our strategic inner-city location in the heart of Singapore’s downtown provides guests with immediate access to vast retail and smart corporate facilities on-site within the same OUE Downtown mixed-use development.
In-House Culinary Experts
Our dedicated in-house F&B team prepares all the food here at Oakwood Premier OUE Singapore, including the quality daily breakfast buffet spread – something that really sets us apart from our competitors. Helmed by Executive Chef Dickson Fung, our 74-seater restaurant Se7enth, serves a menu of classic and contemporary cuisine for discerning local and international guests.
Curating programmes for our guests that suit their needs is something that’s very important to us. That is why we’ve recently launched a series of holistic wellness initiatives in collaboration with partners such as WorldTrainer and Aquaspin. These activities range from wellness talks, to high-intensity training sessions, each specially tailored to meet the needs of busy working professionals in the area.
- What do you want to achieve at Oakwood Premier OUE Singapore?
From the outset, the team has always been aware of our common goal – to be the best-in-class luxury serviced residence in Singapore and internationally. That has not changed, and we hope to continue to engage our guests in an organic way and integrate luxury at each touch point starting from our service. By doing so, we strive to maintain our signature brand of Oakwood hospitality such that it becomes synonymous with luxury. We’d like every guest visiting our property to expect only the best – whether that means being chauffeured around in our VIP vehicle or participating in specially curated health and wellness activities with our various partners.
Getting the right mix of quality product, personalised service and lifestyle offering is what makes the guest experience truly memorable and sets us apart from our competitors. This creates the essential differentiation needed to drive growth for Oakwood Premier OUE Singapore moving forward.
Hopefully in the future we can look at having 100% occupancy and be the preferred choice even over renowned brand name hotels for visitors who are in Singapore for an extended period of time. That would truly be a testament to the hard work each individual at Oakwood Premier OUE Singapore has put in to make the property the success it is today.
- Could you share with us the hospitality trends you have observed
Generally, we are noticing more short-term stays (one to three months) for our One-bedroom and Studio apartments, and mostly an increased preference towards staying in serviced apartments instead of traditional hotels. There is also an increased demand for quality breakfast, like the one we have that is specially prepared by our in-house team, which is a rarity in the current industry.
As Millennials and travellers with Millennial mind-sets are also becoming an increasingly key market, there has also been the emergence of properties such as Oakwood Studios Singapore, developed to cater to this group of people in terms of design, price point and location. Alternative forms of accommodation like Airbnb are also more rampant to cater to these travellers who demand a more ‘home-like’ experience as well as the option for specially curated activities whilst abroad.
Many serviced residences are also adopting advanced technology to streamline processes not just for the property but for guests as well. For example, providing guests with mobile phones with 3G/4G capabilities, so they can travel around with ease and not worry about connectivity. We have taken it a step further and developed our own Oakwood Premier OUE Singapore app. With the app, guests can check out information on the property and its neighbourhood, or even find out information on where to go in Singapore, helping them to plan their stay before they arrive. This is an ideal personal handy guide for guests who are visiting Singapore for the first time and might be overwhelmed by the various options available.
- What are your plans in the future
Though Oakwood has been around for many years with an increasing number of properties in Asia Pacific, it is still a relatively new brand in Singapore with so many opportunities for expansion locally and in the region. It would be great to be a part of their growth in the coming years.
It is also especially exciting to see the whole industry evolving with so many new and interesting developments, each with their unique value proposition. This is both a challenge and an opportunity for the serviced apartment industry and it is even more essential for properties to both differentiate themselves, as well as effectively communicate and showcase their quality. I feel especially close and invested to this industry and would really like to do what I can to make sure serviced apartments really come into their own and are regarded as comparable to any 5-star hotel.
Most importantly, I’d like to continue to develop talent in our property. Our staff are the heartbeat of Oakwood Premier OUE Singapore, and it is truly an honour being able to share my experiences and contribute in some way to helping them improve in their personal development and career goals.
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