Working Lives Singapore

Property developer, Satinder Garcha

A passion for polo and property drew 42-year-old Satinder Garcha to Singapore 10 years ago.

Among the 50 richest people in Singapore, according to one survey, Satinder is worth an estimated $395m (£244m).

Singapore Direct graphic

Born in India, he made his money in Silicon Valley's dotcom boom in the 1990s.

Work-life balance is important to Satinder.

"I can afford to go off for two months and play polo in Argentina and my business still runs just as well, which is a huge luxury," he says.

He spends an hour or so in his office, in the exclusive Raffles Hotel complex, but the majority of his day is spent visiting construction sites and talking to architects.

Becoming a Singapore citizen was crucial to growing his company, which develops upmarket residential property that foreigners cannot buy.

"I had to be a Singaporean to buy that kind of land," he says.

And now he's moving into the hotel business.

"The idea is to do city hotels with personality and ideally with historical links," he says.

As with many people who settle in Singapore, safety is a key factor.

"For me the biggest thing is the rule of law. We wanted to start a family and it is just a great place," he says.

His working day ends about 16:00 when he heads to the polo ground.

"My big outlay I guess would be the polo, which I love, it's a big part of my life," he says. "That's my biggest indulgence."

More Asia stories



  • photo of patient zero, two year-old Emile OuamounoPatient zero

    Tracking first Ebola victim and and how virus spread

  • A young Chinese girl looks at an image of BarbieBarbie's battle

    Can the doll make it in China at the second attempt?

  • Prosperi in the 1994 MdSLost in the desert

    How I drank urine and bat blood to survive in the Sahara

  • Afghan interpetersBlacklisted

    The Afghan interpreters left by the US to the mercy of the Taliban

  • Flooded homesNo respite

    Many hit by last winter's floods are struggling to pay soaring insurance bills

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.