Name: Cynthia Chua
Date of birth: July 1971
Occupation: Founder and CEO of the Spa Esprit Group
Industry: Beauty, F&B and Wellness
How she got started: She began her journey in the beauty industry when she started her very first lifestyle outlet, Spa Esprit, in 1996 in Holland Village. Chua wanted to create a day spa that was fun and quirky, coupled with unique treatments and good products. She also wanted to share her love for aromatherapy. She then launched her next venture, STRIP, a concept focussed entirely on waxing, particularly the Brazilian area. It was very challenging, as Brazilian waxing was then viewed as taboo. However, through fun and cheeky marketing campaigns and press endorsements, she managed to slowly educate consumers and change their perception about personal grooming. Chua later decided to tackle eyebrow and assorted hair grooming through Browhaus where the brand made age-old treatments like threading modern and accessible.
Notable achievements: The Spa Esprit Group (SEG) has an impressive array of unique beauty, lifestyle, and F&B brands under its belt. To date, there are 16 unique brands under the group, with presence in 12 cities including Singapore, New York, London, Shanghai, Hong Kong, Manila, Kuala Lumpur, Jakarta, Bangkok, Davao, Penang and Beijing and over 100 outlets worldwide. In 2004, SEG began global expansion. In 2007, the group also crossed over to the F&B industry and revitalised the Tiong Bahru neighbourhood with a careful curation of products and services that people were interested in. Recently, it has been delving into agriculture, creating Open Farm Community and acquiring rooftop gardens.
Something you might not have known about her: Chua is a certified masseuse and aromatherapy therapist, packing her bags about 20 years ago and heading to Bournemouth, UK to pursue this passion.
A quote she lives by: "True life is lived when tiny changes occur." — Leo Tolstoy
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