KUCHING: Since Hock Seng Lee (HSL) opened leasing opportunities at La Promenade Mall, local entrepreneurs have been sharing their positive reactions to the news.
HSL is taking a “Support Local” approach, giving priority to Sarawakian businesses at the mall, which is part of its 200acre flagship development.
The mall’s first batch of tenants includes established local brands like Choice Supermarket, Taka Patisserie and Black Bean Coffee and Tea. These are Sarawakian brands that have been in business for over 20 years.
Taka, for instance, is the state’s leading cake house. Founded in 1986 with just a little outlet at Jalan Satok, Taka now has almost 20 outlets. Its team of professional bakers include those from Singapore, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Kuala Lumpur.
“At Taka, we believe in the ‘Sarawak Boleh’ spirit. We believe Sarawakians are among the most hardworking and innovative people in the region. We can be as good as anyone when we put our minds to it,” founder Leong Kia Chun said.
Choice Supermarket is a trusted name in the premium grocer scene in Sarawak that is expanding to La Promenade.
Also joining is Black Bean Coffee & Tea, which began as a coffee roasters at Carpenter Street with just a small bar and three tables. Recently, it was listed as “one of the world’s best coffee experiences” by The Lonely Planet Guide recently.
Hock King Authentic Chicken Rice is opening its 13th outlet at La Promenade Mall. Proprietor Nicholas Choong was one of the earliest to sign on to a La Promenade Mall tenancy.
“It took me only a day to make the decision. HSL offered me a good deal for a large lot on the ground floor. This will be Hock King’s first full restaurant in a mall. I’m immensely proud,” Choong said.
HSL also approached younger, proven, entrepreneurs to join its mall. NOMS founders — brothers Ardeles and Avertino Phua, and their friend Kelvin Chong — are setting up their first in-mall restaurant.
“It was nearly a year’s process for us. HSL senior managers have been frequent NOMS customers for some time. Last year, they told us about this opportunity. We wanted to do it immediately, but it took a lot of thoughtful planning and careful feasibility discussions to seal the deal,” Avertino said.
Rice King, a state-based new Taiwanese cuisine franchise, is opening at La Promenade. Owner Peter Chieng said he expanded to La Promenade for its strategic location and landscaping.
“La Promenade Mall is situated neatly in the middle of Kuching and Samarahan. Both ends are growth areas. I’m am impressed with the landscaping, which is a value-add to any mall tenant, especially for eateries,” Chieng said.
Another major tenant is Sweat Factory, a new crossfit centre, which will occupy a huge 6,500sqft corner lot on the mall’s fourth floor.
HSL is in talks with more local entrepreneurs as the mall prepares for opening. “These include an art gallery to feature works by Sarawakian masters, and more eateries.
“We’ll also be announcing telcos, a music centre and others. HSL is a Sarawakian firm, and we proudly support other local businesses. There’s a ‘can do’ spirit among Sarawakians. We take on challenges strategically and we are often successful,” the mall’s leasing manager Trish Lui said
“Personally, I’m also really proud HSL has offered special leases to charities. Charities will only pay utilities and HSL is even sponsoring furnitures. These charities will be on the fourth floor and all on our Corporate Social Responsibility list,” she added.
For the latest, visit hsl.com.my and lapromenademall.com.my.