Ivan Khoo, hotel manager of The Edison George Town shares with The Yum List some stories from behind the scenes and some insider tips on Penang.
What do you do and how did you get into the industry?
I am the hotel manager at The Edison George Town and am ultimately responsible for the overall guest experience and satisfaction. My work scope covers the operational functions of the hotel, sales and marketing, and the general maintenance and upkeep of this heritage building. Being born and bred in Penang, returning home to Penang with her many charms was natural and it was here where I embarked on my journey into hospitality with The Edison Hotels.
Share with us an interesting story from behind the scenes.
It is always interesting to see colleagues out of the working environment. Every now and again, we will have a round of badminton with colleagues. There was one time that two of my colleagues (they are cousins by the way), who went for a traditional Malay wedding and headed straight to the badminton court all suited up. They played their hearts out decked up in traditional costume. It was a sight and a half, to say the least.
What’s the best/ worst part of your job?
The best part of my job is guest engagement and really getting to know them. It is most satisfying when I hear that guests are having an exceptional experience staying with us and have enjoyed exploring the vibrant neighbourhood of George Town, Penang.
The worst part of my job is the time spent away from my family. Saying that the higher up the corporate ladder, these are sacrifices that one needs to make whichever industry one is in.
What’s your favourite meal and drink at The Lounge?
When it comes to food, Penangites are proud of their food. I am a traditionalist foodie and to kick start my day, nothing beats our half boiled egg with toasted Bengali bread paired with our gourmet Cappuccino (traditionally one would have this with local Penang Kopi (coffee)).
The perfect day off would be…
Spending quality time with the family. I believe that once you have a child, your world revolves around them so from playgrounds to kid-friendly eateries are my go-to places during my off days.
A day in the life of a hotel manager is…
Exciting. Every day is a new day and you will never know what is going to happen.
What do you do for fun?
Yet again, fun for me is spending time with my family. Some might say it is an obligation or responsibility, I see it as a privilege.
What’s something you’d like guests to know about The Edison George Town?
If you are looking for an exclusive oasis at the heart of Inner George Town, we are it. We are also an all-inclusive hotel featuring continental breakfast, all day snacks and non-alcoholic beverages, afternoon snacks, pre-dinner wine discovery, and our recently launched supper.
What’s your favourite food and beverage pairing?
Hokkien mee (prawn noodle) with local kopi peng (ice coffee).
What’s your view of the cafe scene in Penang?
The café scene in Penang is booming where both locals and travellers come to experience. There is something to offer for everyone from speciality coffee to single-origin coffee, desserts to gourmet marshmallow and delectable meals. I believe that the café scene is Penang is here to stay.
What’s in store for you in the upcoming months?
We are excited with numerous enhancements to our offerings and collaborations, namely with Delish Asia (specially curated food tour) and Tiffany Soi (International Yogi & Fitness Guide). Follow our Facebook and Instagram page for more updates.