Candy Yiu

Candy Yiu and Akshay Dua with their two children.

Aside from being a software engineer at Intel working on cellular technology, Candy Yiu owns Portland restaurant Malka; Near the Pier Guesthouse, a boutique hotel in Astoria; and Slurpalicious, a local food delivery app, with her husband, Akshay Dua.

Tell us about your background.

“I’m actually an engineer (at Intel) full time. My day job is actually doing research on 5G — well, now it’s 6G — the cell technology, basically. But I think deep, deep inside my heart, my passion is to open an adult-like community-oriented hostel. That is based on traveling when I was little.”

What about your long-term dream of opening a hostel?

“I used to backpack in Europe a lot when I was a student, and I’m always amazed at how people who open hostels, they’re so passionate. And they are usually very community oriented, and people hang out in a common area. We’d cook in the kitchen and chat with each other and make new friends.

“In the U.S., it’s hard to find places like that. Even a hostel is very individual. The only thing I am (not) interested in in hostels is you have to share a (bedroom) with someone. Sometimes in Europe they would get drunk, and it’s a little more difficult.

“When I found this house for sale, there were six bedrooms, and they all had attached bathrooms, I was like, ‘This is perfect. This is a small place I can start.’ I opened Near the Pier Guesthouse.”

What about your Portland restaurant, Malka?

“We opened up a restaurant in Portland… my husband, I and three other people. We worked on the restaurant for two and a half years and finally opened up this, like, new cuisine that has all chaotic ingredients and messy with multiple textures and color.”

What about the food delivery app you created, Slurpalicious?

“We (have) not been able to find affordable solutions, and online software companies, they are charging unreasonably high fees for delivery and online orders. So my husband and I, we decided to start Slurpalicious, which is online ordering. And later on, we’ll (add) delivery service.

“We are very conscious about the fees, because we know the margin of running a restaurant is very, very small. So it has to be really reasonable… The online ordering and the Pay it Forward program is completely free for all eateries. And for deliveries, we’re targeting 9% for delivery fees.

“The app is very community oriented. We have a program called Pay it Forward, through which people can donate money to any eatery they like, and people who need food can also use the app to find free food.”

What stage is the Slurpalicious app at right now?

“Right now, Slurpalicious is fully available for download in both Apple and (the) Google App Store. You can download it and order food from a few of the eateries in Astoria. We have Coffee OR Waffle, Surf 2 Soul. We have also the (Community Supported Fishery) food cart. We have also Curry & Coco (Thai Eatery). Roll and Bowl is on the way.”

How do customers and potential new restaurant clients access Slurpalicious?

“Definitely download the app, because it’s free in both Apple and Google App Store. And then, if you’re an eatery, you can email us (through) contact@slurpalicious.com. And then we are more than happy to come down and set you guys up and to run through how the app works.”

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