Start a Hotel Business in Singapore
How to Open a Hotel in Singapore
Does This Guide Only Apply to Hotels?
Although this guide is titled ‘How to Open a Hotel in Singapore’, the information presented here is applicable to all establishments that are in the business of providing accommodation to tourists or travelers, either for leisure or business. Examples of other establishments that fall under this category are hostels, backpacker inns, lodging or boarding houses, and guest houses.
Read on for more information which will aid in the creation of a hotel business plan in Singapore, be it for a Singapore business hotel, hostel, guest house, or any other provider of accommodation.
Are There Any Perks to Opening a Singapore Hotel?
Singapore is both one of the leading cities for conventions in the world as well as a popular tourist destination in Southeast Asia. That means there are many tourists and travelers visiting the beautiful island-state every year, and unless it’s for a stop-over, they’re going to need accommodation. Economic forecasts predict around an 8% growth in the in the hotel and restaurants sector. Thus, the hospitality industry has become a very robust and financially healthy industry. Singapore benefits from the arrivals of many different sorts of tourists and travelers, all with different budgets. This means that long-term marketing strategy, potential customers, customer services offered, and target market will differ from hotel to hotel. Thus, there are ample opportunities for all types of accommodation, whether they be five-star luxury hotels, boutique hotels, business hotels, modest hostels, or backpacker lodgings.
What Registration or License Will I Need to Be Able to Run a Hotel in Singapore?
A Certificate of Registration and a Hotel-Keeper’s License are needed. The Certificate of Registration is required for its bearer to use the premises as a hotel while the Hotel-Keeper’s License is a requirement for managing the hotel. Both of these are obtained from the Hotels Licensing Board. This also applies to all the other establishments that offer accommodation to tourists and travelers, such as guest houses and hostels.
How Do I Go About Getting The Certificate and License?
There are certain conditions that have to be fulfilled before applying for the Certificate of Registration and Hotel-Keeper’s License.
We’ve outlined the seven conditions to be fulfilled below:
- Incorporation of Business – The first step is to register the hotel as a Singapore company, business, or limited liability partnership. This requires registration with the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA).
- Approval of Premises – The premises chosen for the hotel must be approved by the URA (Urban Redevelopment Authority). The approval will be in the form of a written approval; it is an approval of the use of the proposed premises to run and operate a hotel.
- Appointment of a Hotel-Keeper – A suitably qualified CEO or general manager must be appointed to take care of the hotel’s administrative affairs.
- Advertising the Application – After submission of the application for a Certificate of Registration, the applicant will then have 14 days to advertise the application (in a prescribed format) in two newspapers: the Straits Times (an English daily) and the Lianhe Zaobao (a Chinese daily).
- Clearance from NEA – NEA is the National Environment Agency. Either one of two certificates from their Planning and Development Department must be received: a Clearance Certificate (Temporary Occupation Permit) or a Compliance Certificate (Certificate of Statutory Completion).
- Approval from Building Construction Authority – Either a TOP (Temporary Occupation Permit) or CSC (Certificate of Statutory Completion) from the Building Construction Authority of Singapore is required.
- Approval from Fire Safety Department – Either a TFP (Temporary Fire Permit) or FSC (Fire Safety Certificate) from the Fire Safety Bureau of Singapore is required.
Once these conditions have been fulfilled, the application process may begin.
Applying for the Certificate of Registration and Hotel-Keeper’s License
- A completed application form must be submitted to the Hotels Licensing Board. The following supporting documents must also accompany application:
- Cover Letter which indicates the estimated date of the hotel’s commencement of operation
- Written approval grant from URA (Urban Development Authority)
- Copy of the advertisement that was published in the Straits Times and Lianhe Zaobao
- Resume of the proposed hotel-keeper
- Copy of all the approvals, permits, and certificates from the various agencies mentioned in the pre-requisites section above.
- Duration of processing – Successful applications will usually be processed within three weeks, assuming that there are no objections after 14 days from the date of the advertisement in The Straits Times and Lianhe Zaobao. If successful, the applicant will receive the Certificate of Registration and the Hotel-Keeper’s License.
- Fees and validity – The license fee is S$100 and is payable upon issuance. The license is valid until December of every year and is renewable on an annual basis. There is also an annual registration fee of between S$200 and S$400. The amount depends on how many rooms are in the hotel.