Power list 2014: Queen of luxury

Power list 2014: Queen of luxury

Billionaire businesswoman Christina Ong, best known as the founder and managing director of luxury fashion and lifestyle retailer Club 21, made her mark this year with her luxury hotel brand, Como Hotels and Resorts.

She opened three new hotels in Miami, the Maldives and Phuket to bring the total number of hotels under the Como umbrella to 10 and two have won a clutch of international awards this year.

For putting the Como brand on the global map, Mrs Ong is back on the power list, in the No. 4 spot.

In 2007, she was ranked No. 2, when Club 21 celebrated its 35th anniversary and she was appointed chairman of the National Parks Board and board director of Singapore Airlines - positions she still holds.

This year, her newest resorts, Point Yamu by Como in Phuket and Maalifushi by Como in the Maldives, were named among the year's Best New Hotels by US-based luxury travel agency Five Star Alliance.

Point Yamu also won Best Villa Development in Thailand and South-east Asia and Best Hotel Architectural Design at the South East Asia Property Awards..

It was also winner of Best Hotel Architectural Design, Best Villa Development (Phuket) and was recommended for Best Residential Interior Design at the Thailand Property Awards 2014.

The Metropolitan by Como, Miami Beach has yet to win any awards.

Mrs Ong is married to property magnate Ong Beng Seng, 69. They have two children and an estimated net worth of $1.8 billion.

Her luxury fashion retail group Club 21, through which she manages retail operations for powerhouse fashion brands such as Giorgio Armani and represents brands such as Donna Karan, Comme des Garcons and Lanvin in South-east Asia and Australia, has about 400 stores worldwide.

Mrs Ong and her husband also have controlling shares in British luxury leather goods company Mulberry.

Though Mrs Ong declined to comment on her inclusion in this year's Power List, Mr Kuno Fasel, chief operating officer of Como Hotels and Resorts who has worked with her for 30 years, says: "She is a true visionary. She has developed Como Hotels and Resorts into a world-class hotel group.

"Her attention to detail in design, wellness and cuisine are second to none and sets the benchmark in the industry."

This article was first published on Dec 14, 2014.
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