Sarawak born and bred, Donald & Marina went to the mission schools of St Joseph ‘s and St. Teresa’s and later pursued their tertiary education in Australia and England, respectively.
Donald – holds a Sports Sciences Degree and spent 10 years as head of the State Sports Council’s Sports Science Division. He was subsequently employed as the Operations & Activities Manager of the Sarawak Golf Club. Making a career change, ARTrageously Ramsay Ong – The Art Gallery was established as a partnership with his prominent artist uncle, Ramsay in 1999. As the managing partner, this gallery has grown to become a leading establishment in the region and after a decade, Donald passed on the full ownership to Ramsay to pursue a different business direction in 2010.
Marina – read law at what is now London Metropolitan University and was called to the bar at Lincoln ‘s Inn. Subsequently making her way back to Asia, she spent a year in Singapore, was called to the bar there and then decided that Singapore was too ‘glamorous’ for her and returned home. Called to the bar of Sabah and Sarawak in 1993, she practiced law with a leading legal firm and rose to become a partner. Choosing to be answerable to no one but herself, she set up her own legal firm and is currently the lady boss of Marina Foo Advocates. Now she can plan her travels more freely.
Borneo Experiences by Singgahsana Lodge Adventures Sdn. Bhd. or BEX, was launched in January 2012. As a full fledge inbound travel and tour outfit licensed by the Ministry of Tourism Malaysia, BEX has quickly become a major player in the regional inbound travel industry specializing in the development and execution of unique eco adventure products with emphasis on local community collaboration on the world’s third largest island of Borneo.
Calling on their vast travel experiences (between them having travelled to virtually every country in Asia and the major parts of Europe, Australasia and most of the Americas, each BEX product is carefully designed by Donald & Marina with their talented team. All BEX products incorporate a sense of fun and adventure whilst highlighting the rich local eco and cultural diversity of Sarawak and Borneo, all within a responsible and sustainable tourism framework.
I graduated in 2001 from Universiti Utara Malaysia (UUM) or University of Northern Malaysia, Bachelor’s Degree in International Affairs Management.
I accidently got into the tourism industry in 2004 while helping out a friend at a travel agency. I fell in love with it and decided to commit myself into this line of work. I thoroughly enjoy planning and assisting guests realize their dream adventures in Borneo and it gives me a great pleasure when these same guests come back totally satisfied with the level of service and hospitality extended.
In addition to learning to deal with an international clientele, this work also challenges me on a daily basis with a wide range of guests’ expectations. This drives me to acquire greater knowledge on how best to constantly deliver greater customer service.
My name is Amrielza though most people call me Yna and I am 24 years old (in 2015). I studied Tourism Management at the Kuala Lumpur Metropolitan University for 3 years and continued working there as a Tour Assistant for 8 months after my graduation in 2013. In April 2014, I decided to head home to Kuching to learn more about Sarawak and Borneo. Being of mixed parentage that of Melanau and Malay, I feel deeply connected to my homeland and possess a strong interest to serve in the tourism and hospitality industry here. It is my joy to be able to apply the skills and knowledge I have learnt throughout my diploma course. To share my knowledge and experience with guests has become my passion and nothing makes me happier than to engage with our guests on Sarawak and Borneo and also to learn about their own country. I also take great pleasure in assisting guests plan their stay here in Borneo and to do my utmost to ensure that their stay is most memorable.
I am a local Malay boy, born in Miri Sarawak. Graduated with a Diploma in information Technology (IT) from Kuching Polytechnic in 2008, and have since been working in the Hospitality & Tourism line for more than 8 years, 3 wonderful years with Singgahsana Lodge, of course! I enjoy working in front line of this industry because I love to meet interesting travelers from all over the world. The international guests I have dealt with have taught me a lot through their different perspectives, attitudes and needs, and it’s a constant challenge for me to improve on my level of patience, communication and public relations skills. As a senior crew for Singgahsana Lodge, I was tasked to ensure the lodge runs smoothly and that the crewmembers are working in a happy and safe environment. Most important of all of course is that I have to make sure that all our guests feel comfortable, safe and totally welcomed with the unparalleled Sarawak hospitality.
I chose this job because I love to travel and it gives me an insight on how to handle my travelling schedule in the future. As a hospitality diploma holder, I get a chance to put into practice what I have learnt in theory, which is great for me.
I’m an outdoor person, I do a lot of hiking and some extreme sport. As such I am thrilled to be handling our in house ‘Pedal Power Bicycle Tours’ as a planner and guide. At Singgahsana Lodge and Borneo Experiences, I have met a lot of people from all over the world and it’s great to make new friends having the same interests as you. As a local Iban guy, I am happy to share my knowledge of my homeland so if you are interested to know more about Kuching, look for me.
I have been working in the hospitality and tourism line since finishing high school. My time at several hotels in Kuching and now at Borneo Experiences and Singgahsana Lodge has provided me with invaluable experience in extending our warm Sarawak hospitality to guests from every comer of the world. I enjoy working in a highly interactive environment like customer service. I am patient but firm in my dealings with guests and have great experience in resolving difficult situations. I have also developed a warm, approachable, professional nature in my work. As a team player, I am happy to follow management instructions and to constantly learn from my colleagues what I do not know. Team spirit is our emphasis here and that is why I am very happy to be a team member. J
Tayar and Marina are BEX’s much-raved hosts of the iconic village based product, ‘Village in the Clouds’ Experience. With their unmatched hospitality, willingness to engage and impart knowledge of local practices, this husband and wife team has hosted an impressive list of most appreciative guests to their village home in the remote highlands outside of Kuching.
Long time friend of Donald & Marina, Apoi has come full circle in his career choices. His stint in the big cities, first as a photojournalist in Kuching and later as a fine wines agent in Kuala Lumpur made him realize that he is happiest at home in Bario, the capital of the Kelabit Highlands. The youngest son of Tama Ngimat, the previous ‘Pemanca’ or community leader of Bario, Apoi is now home in Bario managing his family property, the Ngimat Ayu Homestay. The Singgahsana Lodge Group is proud to be associated with Ngimat Ayu Homestay and Apoi’s outstanding level of hospitality and passion for the great outdoors is the cornerstone for BEX’s eco-adventures into Bario, the heart of Borneo.
Knowing Bario and its surrounds like the back of his hand, Andrew is most at home in the tropical jungle. His extensive knowledge on the flora and fauna of the area coupled with his affable demeanor and outstanding jungle survival skills make him the ideal nature guide.
With an impressive track record as a veteran licensed ‘green badge’ guide, Redy is another excellent guide into the Kelabit Highlands wilderness. Having led numerous guests through virtually all the treks in the area, Redy is perhaps the most experienced guide of them all.
Highly personable Joeing has an infectious smile that is almost a permanent feature. He plays a significant role in ensuring that campsites are set up well ahead of guests arrival and that food, beverage and hospitality standards are at its highest levels at all times. Come to Bario to meet him.