Urbanski, Singapore to open Hotel School in Sri Lanka | Daily News


Urbanski, Singapore to open Hotel School in Sri Lanka

Chandra Mohotti
Chandra Mohotti


Former Chairman, Sri Lanka Institute of Tourism and Hotel Management (SLITHM) and veteran Hotelier Chandra Mohotti plans to partner up with founder and CEO of Urbanski, Singapore, Sonia Ong, to open Hotel School in Sri Lanka.

“With tourism expected to boom in Sri Lanka, we need to quickly upgrade the skills of the population to prepare them for the future. I have plans to open an international hospitality school in Sri Lanka with Chandra. This will be a huge opportunity to elevate the station of the poor,” says Sonia.

Sonia Ong is the founder of the Singapore Rollerski Association. She is also the founder and CEO of Urbanski a sport resort, tourism, training and recreation business with presence in Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia and Cambodia. She also runs a public health nonprofit in Singapore.

Students who complete their degree in this proposed hospitality school will be given the opportunity to obtain practical training in Singapore, as practical training is an integral part of the hospitality industry.

Sonia Ong, featured in a Singapore magazine cover page

Sri Lanka has a growing tourism industry and it hasn’t shown signs of stopping despite the slow growth in the last few decades and the especially the last few months. Sri Lanka is slowly but surely bouncing back to its normal state despite the April 21st Easter attacks that shook the world.

“I have been visiting Sri Lanka annually for the last 10 years and have met former Manager of Galadari Hotel and Senior Vice President Galle Face Hotels Group, Chandra Mohotti on many occasions and it was he who proposed this Hotel School which we hope to open in 2020 end.”

With this growing demand for hotels, comes a growing demand for talent in the hospitality sector. Therefore it is important to meet these demands with individuals equipped with the necessary skills and correct attitudes for the hospitality industry. It is important to get rid of the

conservative mindset that tourism industry is a ‘cheap’ job, because it really isn’t so. Most parents traditionally view it as a disreputable job for their daughters and expect them to pursue paths such as teaching and accounting if they do not choose the paths of medicine or science as these jobs are deemed as ‘reputable’.

It is high time that the industry veterans took initiative to change the rural mindset of parents to create a more female inclusive industry. Sri Lanka’s unique placement on the world map has always been one of the many reasons that have contributed to its surge in tourism. “As a tea

collector and lover, I am enamoured by Sri Lankan tea and tea plantations, which should be considered national treasures.”

Tea industry has grown so much ever since and Sri Lanka is now home to international hotel chains operating in and out of Colombo due to the growing demand for luxury accommodation for tourists.

Chandra Mohotti said that though there are many hotel schools in Sri Lanka they lack the on the job overseas training facilities. “Through this school we will be able to fill this void as we can offer on the job training in Singapore.”

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