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Hotel Corner

Meet George Wang, General Manager of Hotel sáv

George Wang, General Manager of the just launched independent hotel sáv in Hung Hom, Kowloon, talks to us about the challenges and advantages of working with international hotel chains and opening independent hotels from ground zero.

 

I grew up in an entertainment and hotel family – my father was an actor and then a hotel entrepreneur so I started working at my father’s 5-star hotel in Taipei at a young age, learning about hospitality in different departments.

I lived in the United States for more than 10 years, doing my degree and working at a marketing company there, which sowed the seeds of my strength in sales and marketing. I then returned to Hong Kong in 1989 as Associate Director of Convention Services at Hyatt International.

I took the role of Marketing Manager at the Hong Kong Tourist Association (now renamed as Hong Kong Tourism Board) 6 years later; while working there one of the worldwide campaigns we did to promote Hong Kong went up to National Geographic – that was one of the most memorable moments of my career.

I ventured into independent hotel management in 2003, rebranding the Nathan Hotel by giving it a total facelift from interior to exterior as the General Manager.

Hotel sáv is situated at a fabulously intriguing area. It still has the local flavour thanks to the legendary eateries and old shops here but it’s also developing rapidly. It’s really the melting pot of both the new and the old.

Converting an office building into Hotel sáv was both a challenging and fun experience. We had to consider a lot of things about the design so that it can cope with the operation perfectly. Having accomplished that is very rewarding indeed.

In terms of management style, I’m a 100% hands on person and I don’t believe in hierarchy. Here at sáv I help out carrying food and cleaning tables in the restaurant during busy times. Young people these days want others to understand their difficulties so I always listen to and work with them as much as possible.

The smiling faces of the customers are always my biggest inspiration – especially after they have paid the bills! That means you have done a good job satisfying them and they will come back.

Hong Kong is more than shopping and eating. The culture here is very diverse and in fact, 70% of Hong Kong’s land is green. I would suggest visitors go explore the countryside like Sai Kung and also try the local cuisine. 

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