About The Founder: Billings Leong Shee Wing

The late Mr. Billings Leong was born in Guangdong, China and educated in the US where he graduated with an architectural diploma from Pratt Institute of Technology, New York. He underwent his first training as an architect in the US then back to China and Hong Kong, before leaving for Jesselton (now Kota Kinabalu) when Communists took over China in 1949 where he was working with the Tiger Squadron of the American Air Force. Initially, he was supposed to set sail for Africa but at the last minute changed of his mind to stay back in Sabah (then known as North Borneo) became his destination.

In 1951, he set up his private practice under Architect Billings S.W. Leong and was the earliest Chinese to set up an architectural practice in the then Jesselton where some expatriates archtiects also rendered their services to foreign establishments. He runs his practice from a small rented office at the Hongkong Bank Chambers with a small number of staffs but mainly responsible for changing the face of post-war Jesselton town.

In 1991, Billings Leong was then 84 years old. He decided to call it a day and retired from his beloved architectural practice he single handedly set up, leaving it in the safe hands of his partners to continue his legacy. Before his retirement in December 1990, he was honoured by PAM Sabah Chapter for his contribution in shaping Kota Kinabalu and other Sabah townships.

On 13th April 2002, at the grand old age of 95, Billings Leong Shee Wing passed away and he will always be remembered as the pioneering architect who helped to build Jesselton from a post-war shanty town into a modern and vibrant city.