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Serviced apartments: Demographic changes across Asia reflect a new class of mid-level migrant workers

Published by Nikkei Asian Review, August 26, 2015

TOM BENNER, Contributing writer

SINGAPORE — The serviced apartment industry in Southeast Asia — which traditionally serves well-heeled traveling executives with high-end features such as full concierge and butler services — is expanding its business focus to the needs of a less affluent, younger and growing migrant urban workforce.

That’s the finding of a newly released academic study that describes an itinerant class of mid-level workers whose careers demand frequent cross-border relocation and an increasingly permanent need for temporary housing.

Titled “The shifting demographics of the serviced apartment industry in South East Asia,” the paper, published in the “South East Asia Research Journal,” cites a permanent condition of geographic temporariness among a growing proportion of Asia’s middle-class urban workforce. Continue reading …