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Philip Chan

Philip Chan

Hotelier

Tell us about yourself.
I attended Rugby School then studied computer science at King’s College London and real-estate investment at Cass Business School.

What’s something not a lot of people know about you?
I do all the photography for Page Hotels. I also skateboard.

Did you always want to be a hotelier?
I’ve always been involved in photography, and travel is an important component of that. I’ve also been blessed to be able to travel around the world, and to visit places I could never have imagined. So through travel, I was able to experience different types of hotels, which piqued my interest in the industry.

What was your first big break?
Most probably the opening of Page Common coffee house and Page148, as this is where I realised that my ideas and concepts could become business realities. Covid has been a “big break” of sorts, with staycations and coffee playing a big part in the Hong Kong community during this difficult period, so we were very lucky to be one step ahead. We’re among the first hotels in Hong Kong to have an artisinal coffee shop.

What’s been your greatest challenge?
Definitely Covid-19.

Who inspires you?
Quite a few people. My parents are high up on the list, as it was they who taught me my morals and life perspective. Sir Gordon Wu — his philosophy of building bridges is to connect people and make it easier to experience other places. Bringing people closer is what Facebook and Whatsapp do with modern technology. Finally there’s Jeremy Jauncey, founder of the wildly successful Beautiful Destinations Instagram page. His perspective of the world is unique and, for me, he created the travel community. He’s one of the best storytellers in the world.

What are the keys to success in your work?
I’d say a combination of curiosity and experience. You need both in large measure to know what’s out there. Without curiosity, it’s difficult have experiences. Without experiences, it’s difficult to be knowledgeable. Without knowledge, it’s very difficult to be persuasive.

What are you most proud of?
Friends and family.

What advice do have for aspiring hoteliers?
Be curious.

How difficult has it been during the pandemic?
It’s been an extremely difficult last few months for the hospitality industry. We’re all trying our best, but we’re all looking forward to being able to travel once again.

What can we look forward to from you in the next 12 months?
I hope I’ll be able to look into a few more communities, and create products or experiences in line with our overall brand philosophy. We’ll launch a Hong Kong City Guide and a Hong Kong Coffee Guide very soon. It’s something I’m extremely proud of and can’t wait to show the world. I hope this can inspire people to travel more and see the different parts of our city.