Hubert Burda Media


Leading one of the most memorable hotels in Kuala Lumpur, Anson Chan, General Manager of Lanson Place Bukit Ceylon Serviced Residences, speaks to Luxury Lifestyle Awards on his journey and experiences with the property.

Where did you work prior to joining the Lanson Place in 2004? How did that experience help you in your work at the Lanson Place?

My career started at Mandarin Oriental before moving on to the Peninsula Group and later at Regal Airport Hotel which is the largest hotel in Hong Kong prior to joining Lanson Place. The experience gained from these luxury properties and one of the busiest hotels in Hong Kong were some of the benefits reaped in dealing with different markets.

In 2004, you joined the Lanson Place Hotel team in Hong Kong. How did you manage to become its opening Manager?

I was very fortunate to have met my mentor, Andreas Hofer, who was the Vice Chairman at Lanson Place. Prior to Lanson Place, he was the General Manager at Mandarin Oriental Hong Kong in the 80s where I also worked with him. He was the main person responsible to bring me into Lanson Place Hotel as its opening Manager.

Was this job challenging for you back then? Is it still challenging for you in any sense?

Since Lanson Place Hotel Hong Kong is the first Boutique Hotel in Hong Kong, it was quite challenging to market this new operation concept as the “Boutique Hotel” concept was not well received at that time.

Lanson Place Hotel is the first “Small Luxury Hotel of the World” in Hong Kong. How did you or your company come to this idea?

We were invited by “Small Luxury Hotels of the World” to join them. As an independent property, we needed a representation from an organisation to do marketing for us worldwide and SLH matches with our image and positioning.

In 2011, you became the Regional General Manager for Malaysia. Were you ready for this career shift? How did you work change in both psychological and everyday routine matter? Do you enjoy it more now?

After 8 years in Lanson Place Hotel, Hong Kong, the Chairman of Lanson Place Hospitality Management Ltd sent me to Kuala Lumpur to look after our flagship project, Lanson Place Bukit Ceylon. This in many ways allowed me the opportunity to gain international experience.

My initial challenges were to manage people from different countries and the need to learn their different cultural backgrounds.

I enjoy my work very much as I have met and made some friends here. I am very fortunate that many residents treat me like their family member where they cook for me, go out for drinks with me and even introduce their friends to me.

What is the general strategy behind Lanson Place? Does the company have any plans to expand its worldwide presence in the next few years?

Lanson Place is aggressively looking for projects both Asia and China. We have also established “By Lanson” concept which targets the young executive and middle management group.

Lanson Place Hospitality Management Limited has been awarded multiple times for its work. What efforts does it take to be the ‘leading boutique hotel’, the ‘best-serviced apartment operator’ and now the Luxury Lifestyle Award Asia 2015 nominee? Why do you think it is worth to participate in such ceremonies?

To make our properties outstanding, we have to be innovative and always thinking out of the box, otherwise, we will always be a follower. We have gained many awards mostly due to our personality – the personality combined with guests mix, hardware and most important our services.

Many properties named themselves “The Best” but, in reality, is it recognisable? Let me share with you this beautiful experience as an example where we recently organised our second year anniversary party in August 2015. The concept is “We are Family” where our external customers (residents/ guests) actually served our internal customers (staff) during the event. I have never seen anything like this happening in other hotel/service apartment. Therefore, we feel that it is worth to participate in such ceremonies as recognition to my colleagues for their effort in maintaining the Luxury Lifestyle service, if we win the award.