Under its signature CUBE brand, CUBE Boutique Capsule Hotel at Kampong Glam, is part of the expanding portfolio of hospitality real estate in Asia helmed by RB Hospitality. Its location in the Kampong Glam Heritage Trail underscores the group’s premise for affordable, restored heritage accommodation located in popular conservation and cultural enclaves targeted at a new group of digitally-inclined, discerning travellers.
Following the successful launch of its first capsule hotel in Chinatown in 2016, CUBE Boutique Capsule Hotel at Kampong Glam offers another 56 beds – a mix of singles and queens- each in its own cozy capsule. Measuring 6 ft x 3 ft x 4ft for a single and 6 ft x 5 ft x 4 ft for a queen with plush mattresses and linen, each capsule is well designed to moderate its own temperature and air-flow; and solidly insulated to reduce ambient noise for a comfortable rest. Each unit is equipped with a universal electrical outlet, safe, mirror/vanity area, bedside light, a small space for hanging garments and a locker drawer with digital security for personal storage. Named after the neighbouring streets, room configurations vary between two and 18 capsules. For an extra level of security and privacy, female travellers can choose to stay in the women-only rooms. The rooms are pleasantly shaded in soothing pine tones and sturdily sound proofed against the lively sounds of the vicinity. The bathrooms are spacious with standing showers, hairdryer and bath toiletries. Guests are provided with a dental kit, slippers and one towel, upon check-in and this is exchangeable daily. A washing machine with complimentary detergent is also available for guests while work desks are also provided for guests’ use.
Besides complimentary Wi-Fi, guests can also enjoy a daily breakfast showcasing local flavours in a relaxed communal dining area. Flanked by Yasu Japanese Grill and a host of food & beverage outlets including halal options, guests are spoilt for choice. Guests can also log onto the Dining Butler, a smartphone tech solution for food orders and delivery. Alfresco seats in the front provide a view of the colourful surrounds of Kampong Glam. Also located in the same lobby is the Singapore Visitor Centre offering tours to popular Singapore locations. Friendly and knowledgeable reception staff in smart uniforms are on hard to offer 24/7 service including insider tips on authentic local experiences.
“Kampong Glam is chosen for its vibrancy, charm and rich heritage culture. In addition to the Sultan Mosque and the Malay Heritage Centre, there are a number of shops, cafes, restaurants and other bustling sites such as the hip Haji Lane. The Bugis MRT Station is only a 5-minute walk away.” explained Sonia Anya Tay, Chief Operating Officer and Co-Founder.
CUBE Boutique Capsule Hotels are aimed squarely at savvy, sociable travellers, yearning for out of the ordinary accommodation in distinctive locales with immersive cultural experiences. CUBE has also attracted business travelers who appreciate the conveniences of capsule accommodation without burning a hole in their pockets. By keeping the most essential hotel features such as daily housekeeping, 24-hour concierge, airport pickups, free Wi-Fi and breakfast, along with tech touches, the CUBE Hotel experience has endeared itself to such visitors without compromising on comfort. Guests can still indulge in a hotel stay, while relishing the cost savings that come with a capsule experience. Each capsule stay can range between S$50 and S$120 per night.
“Our guests are typically 18-35 years old global explorers including founders of new generation businesses and special interest groups. The positive interest shown in our properties has inspired us to create a new CUBE Capsule concept which we aim to open before the end of this year. This is very much in line with our vision to grow the number of CUBE Boutique Capsule Hotels to eight in Singapore in the next few years” added Ms. Tay.
Since the launch of the CUBE brand, the group was awarded the TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence for the Chinatown property as well as the ISO 9001:2015 certification in Project Management of Hotel Construction & Renovation and Provision of Hospitality Services.
ABOUT THE CO-FOUNDERS
BENEDICT CHOA Chief Executive Officer, 43
SONIA ANYA TAY Chief Operating Officer, 32
Benedict Choa and Sonia Anya Tay, husband-and-wife team, established RB Hospitality Pte Ltd in December 2015, as Chief Executive Officer and Chief Operating Officer respectively.
A graduate with a Bachelor in Business Management and Golden Key* recipient from Monash University in Australia in 1998, Benedict Choa also acquired a keen interest in Civil Engineering during his studies. To a large extent, this interest played a part in laying the foundations for the real estate and hospitality industry. At the age of 20, he established his own company, King Hall Builders, specializing in design, building construction and renovations and this was then subsequently sold when it reached its prime.
At the age of 14, Sonia started working in a beauty products business for 10 years to help support her family and fund her own education. She then joined Dairy Farm in 2011 at the age of 25 as Product Manager prior to being head hunted to join Unilever in Sales in 2013. After a few months, she left to work with Benedict Choa at MB Capital Pte Ltd before launching RB Hospitality. Her business development and procurement skills acquired from her corporate stints have facilitated her foray into hospitality.
Noticing a dearth of accommodation to cater to savvy, young travel explorers and following a consultation with the Singapore Tourism Board, both Benedict and Sonia felt the time was ripe to invest in this niche. CUBE Boutique Capsule Hotels was founded to provide stylish, affordable capsule style accommodation to such travellers. It comes under the Singapore-based RB Hospitality Pte Ltd, a real estate company operating three hotels and a serviced apartment. RB Hospitality is a rapidly-growing and nimble investment firm, with capabilities in capital raising, deployment and asset management. In addition to benefiting from the assets’ capital values, the firm’s performance is bolstered by steady operating income from its properties.
The co-founders’ bold vision is to develop CUBE into a prominent Singapore brand with a strong capacity for expansion, particularly within key global cities identified for high performing potential after 2020. The target is to reach up to eight properties in prime locations in Singapore close to transportation nodes.
As CEO, Benedict is instrumental in the development, acquisition and technical aspects of their properties while COO Sonia is involved in the daily administration and operation of the hotels which command a total staff strength of 25 currently.
“Our goal is to re-invent the concept of hospitality/accommodation service providers and incorporate efficient digitalization capabilities for today’s travelers. We need to think outside the box to stay competitive, innovative and compelling even if it means disrupting the typical hospitality business model in the process,” according to CEO Benedict Choa.
With three young children, the young couple is devoted to the causes of children and the elderly; and amidst their hotel expansion ambitions, they plan to establish a charity foundation. An initiative of Sonia Anya Tay, the charity foundation aims to raise and distribute funds widely, proportionately and regularly throughout the year instead of just festive holidays and fundraising drives.
*Golden Key is the world’s largest collegiate honor society.
ABOUT RB HOSPITALITY PTE LTD
RB Hospitality is a Singapore-based real estate firm, led by co-founders Benedict Choa and Sonia Anya Tay, that operates three hotels and a serviced apartment property in the city-state.
RB Hospitality is also a rapidly-growing and nimble investment firm, with capabilities in capital raising, deployment and asset management. In addition to benefiting from the assets’ capital values, the firm’s performance is underpinned by steady operating income from its properties.
ABOUT CUBE BOUTIQUE CAPSULE HOTELS
CUBE Boutique Capsule Hotels is a growing brand of affordably priced hotels with stylish, hipster accommodation for the savvy traveller. It is on track to reach its target of eight properties in the region and is selective with its acquisitions, picking only properties in prime locations that are close to transportation nodes.