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September 2019

All the latest from the Middle East hospitality industry

Sun, sand & clear skies Azure Beach’s managing partner on the urban shoreside retreat

Talent Trends How to attract the right candidates

Power Players

Dubai Retail CEO Nabil Ramadhan and Sarood Hospitality Managing Director Spencer Ayers on the biggest F&B rebrand of the year P43 - All about the Leaders in F&B Awards 2019


September 2019

CREAM

A guarantee for pastry chefs The culinary success of European cream is due to the multiple roles it plays in improving taste, texture, binding and even presentation. Its silky, creamy, smooth and shiny texture is why the term “creamy� is so widely used by tasters to describe the smoothness of a product. Dairy cream enhances aromas and reveals flavours without dominating and respects the subtlety of food. By mixing hot or cold cream with another ingredient. It also binds and stabilizes hot preparations: it will soften stuffing and egg dishes, making them more cohesive. Other advantages of cream: it reduces the bitterness of cocoa, the acidity of lemon, and tempers the pungency of certain fruit and the astringency of others. It improves the fondant used on pastries and turns fruit into mousse.

In addition to these culinary and gastronomic qualities that have made cream an indispensable go-to ingredient for French pastry chefs, it also has obvious practical and dietary qualities. Because cream is rich in water, it is the least greasy type of fat. Soft, luxurious and light!

Because European dairy cream has its place in the finest kitchens around the world, its use has adapted to the needs, practices and new expectations of chefs: progress in the diversification of creams has allowed for greater control when cooking and the packaging has allowed it to be sold on store shelves (instead of refrigerators), providing greater freedom of use and storage. All of this combines to make cream an essential ingredient in any sophisticated pastry!

The content of this advertorial represents the views of the author only and is his sole responsibility. The European Commission do not accept any responsibility for any use that may be made of the information it contains.

CAMPAIGN FINANCED WITH AID FROM THE EUROPEAN UNION www.hotelnewsme.com


On the web Read the latest news, features and much more on our website. www.hotelnewsme.com

08 News

24 Chain of the month

september 2019 // Issue #015

Contents 28 Event preview

34 Movers & Shakers

Features 08 //

News Dubai welcomes 8.36 million overnight visitors and more

18 //

COVER STORY Dubai Retail CEO Nabil Ramadhan and Sarood Hospitality Managing Director Spencer Ayers

24 //

CHAIN OF THE MONTH Hilton

28 //

EVENT PREVIEW The Hotel Show

34 //

MOVERS & SHAKERS Glee Hospitality Services

Hotel & Catering NEWS ME

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september 2019 // Issue #015

Contents

On the web Read the latest news, features and much more on our website. www.hotelnewsme.com

Features

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36 //

MP INTERVIEW James Burton, Azure Beach Managing Partner

40 //

EVENT PREVIEW Gulfood Manufacturing

42 //

EVENT PREVIEW F&B Forum Leaders in F&B Awards

46 //

EVENT REVIEW F&B Strategy Roundtable

50 //

PRODUCTS Emerson

52 //

MARKETPLACE Beverages

54 //

SUPPLIER WATCH Mirodec

56 //

TALENT CatererGlobal

58 //

F&B FAR AND NEAR Chef Middle East

60 //

0PINION M D Warrier

62 //

REVIEW Cinq Mondes Spa

www.hotelnewsme.com


Same connoisseurs of foodservice, now under one name.

Regionally recognized as different companies, we are a pot of ingredients that share the same passion, vision, and values for foodservice, and we are now proud to present ourselves as one single recipe to success – Bidfood. E. marketing@bidfoodme.com | W. bidfoodme.com | Toll Free: 3210-800


September 2019

Editor's letter

A note from the editor

D i n a Maa t y

Director Rabih Najm Rabih@bncpublishing.net CEO Wissam Younane Wissam@bncpublishing.net Group Commercial Director

Samer Alloush samer@bncpublishing.net Editor

ata released by Dubai’s Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (Dubai Tourism) has revealed that the emirate of Dubai welcomed 8.36 million international overnight visitors in the first six months of 2019, posting a positive three percent in tourism volume growth compared to the same period last year. It’s these numbers from the region that make us proud to be a part of the hospitality and F&B industries, steadily skyrocketing to greater things as the years go by. When it comes to the latter, we’ve been seeing major developments in terms of guest experience, with industry professionals seeking all what’s new and exciting with the aim of keeping customers happy. This was one of the most important topics that we shed the light on at Hotel & Catering News Middle East’s roundtable held last month in attendance of some of the biggest key players in the industry. "F&B Strategy – from Ingredients to Innovation” brought together everyone from VPs to chefs, to discuss kitchen-to-table, and everything in between. I was amazed at how much – even

more so than I had imagined – went into making every single visit a great one for guests. The amount of attention to detail that goes into crafting fantastic experiences, our roundtable attendees have explained, is beyond belief – and what’s coming up next is nothing short of exceptional. It’s looking very good for the customer, who – not only is always right – but also now has access to the whole host of tailored opportunities on offer. The most striking aspect is, perhaps, how keen industry professionals are on surpassing expectations, and getting it right 99.9% of the time (at least). We’re about to see even greater things in 2020, a year which is predicted will give rise to concepts and projects we may have never experienced before. Being a hotelier, or an F&B star, has never felt better – that’s what we found out during our roundtable. When it comes to strategy, there will be tonnes to be revealed in the coming months, especially as high season approaches, so watch this space for more from where all the magic happens. Regards, Dina

Dina Maaty dina@bncpublishing.net Contributors

Marouane Al Mandri Art Director Aaron Sutton Aaron@bncpublishing.net Photographer

Farook Al Saliq Marketing Executive

Vince Celestial Vince@bncpublishing.net

SUBSCRIBE subscriptions@bncpublishing.net PO Box 502511 Dubai, United Arab Emirates P +971 4 4200 506 | F +971 4 4200 196

For all commercial enquiries related to Hotel & Catering News ME contact samer@bncpublishing.net T +971 55 776 4670 All rights reserved © 2014. Opinions expressed are solely those of the contributors. Hotel & Catering News ME and all subsidiary publications in the MENA region are officially licensed exclusively to BNC Publishing in the MENA region by Hotel & Catering News ME. No part of this magazine may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means without written permission of the publisher. Printed by UPP

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3 RECIPES OF FLAVORED BUTTER CREATED BY

CHEF DIMA HAMATI In Europe, and particularly in France, butter is inseparable from gastronomy. It clearly represents a certain way of life, and despite the evolution of eating habits, it remains essential for cooks and chefs. Enter a kitchen, and look for butter... it is never far away. Trends change, culinary techniques evolve, but it remains the favorite ingredient of chefs. Ingredient they like to transform in their own way‌

SOUR SUMAC BUTTER

COFFEE BUTTER AND SPICES

250 g butter - 5 g chili powder - 10 g sumac - 5 g smoked paprika

250 g butter - 10 grains of cardamom - 5 g ground coffee

5 g cumin in granules - 5 g salt - The zest of a lemon

15 g cardamom powder - 10 cloves - 2 small cinnamon sticks 30 g of date molasses - 20 g brown sugar - 3 g salt

Mix the softened butter and all the ingredients, then shape, cling

FLAVORED BUTTER

film, and leave to harden in the refrigerator.

Sous-vide the ingredients and cook them at 90°C for 1 hour. Pass the whole bag through a coffee filter and collect the flavoured butter. There should be 160 grams left. Let the butter harden at room temperature. Whisk together the date molasses, brown sugar and salt to make them homogeneous. Add this mixture to the flavoured butter you previously cooked. Shape and set aside in a cool place.

HONEY BUTTER AND ZAATAR 250 g butter - 30 g zaatar - 90 g honey - 2 g salt

Mix the softened butter and all the ingredients, form them into the desired shape, film and store in the refrigerator.

The content of this advertorial represents the views of the author only and is his sole responsibility. The European Commission do not accept any responsibility for any use that may be made of the information it contains.


September 2019

News

For all the latest News, Visit www.hotelnewsme.com Follow us on Facebook for up-to-the-minute breaking news Read the latest edition on www.hotelnewsme.com

Investment

Dubai welcomes 8.36 million overnight visitors in first half of 2019

The emirate of Dubai welcomed 8.36 million international overnight visitors in the first six months of 2019, posting a positive three percent in tourism volume growth 8

Hotel & Catering NEWS ME

compared to the same period last year, according to the latest data released by Dubai’s Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (Dubai Tourism). India once again led the

pack, drawing the highest half year volumes with 997,000 visitors – particularly noteworthy given the severe air traffic and seat capacity challenges due to geopolitical volatilities. Dubai continued

to drive booking interest from Indians on a mass scale largely due to high-impact delivery of segment and season-specific campaigns across the most accessible Tier-1 and Tier-2 cities. www.hotelnewsme.com


September 2019

News

Rixos Hotels inks deal to re-launch its largest resort in Egypt Rixos Hotels has signed a deal to operate its largest all-inclusive resort on Egypt’s Red Sea Riviera. Part of the Accor portfolio, the group has partnered with Eastern Company for Investment and Touristic Development to relaunch the Rixos Makadi Bay, Hurghada. This agreement to manage the world’s largest luxury resort in the Egyptian Riviera overlooking the Red Sea is the latest milestone to follow Accor’s acquisition of 50% of Rixos Hotels’ shares as part of its expansion strategy in the Middle East. The project, scheduled to launch in 2020, will eventually expand the existing property on the bay to feature 1,636 keys and

world-class leisure and sports facilities. “This collaboration represents a pivotal moment in Accor’s growth history, as our brand’s largest resort globally will offer a comprehensive range of facilities and dynamic entertainment experiences,” says Fettah Tamince, founder and

chairman of Rixos Hotels. The renovation project of the existing development in Makadi Bay will be phased in two stages, each spanning a year. Phase one, which will include the addition of wings and facilities to uplift the hotel in line with Rixos brand standards, is already underway.

Saudi retailer Fawaz Abdulaziz Alhokair & Co. acquires 10 food and beverage brands Saudi fashion retailer Fawaz Abdulaziz Alhokair & Co. has announced the acquisition of 10 international food and beverage franchise brands in over 200 locations from Food and Entertainment Company Ltd., valued at SAR340 million. The franchise operations of the 10 international food and beverage brands recorded an EBITDA value of SAR 54 million against a revenue of SAR 354 million in FY2019. The acquisition reinforces the company’s vision to create a stronger and more impactful “shoppertainment” experience. Growth will be focused on targeted Quick Service Restaurant (QSR) businesses. The primary brands of this portfolio which make up the bulk of locations within the acquisition include Seattle’s Best Coffee, Cinnabon, Mama Bunz and Molten Chocolate Café.

Agthia Group reports revenue of AED 1.06 billion for H1 2019

Agthia Group PJSC, a food and beverage company, reported a net profit of AED 84 million and revenues of AED 1.06 billion for H1 2019. The company’s revenue grew 5.4% over the same period last year, with a portfolio that includes Al Ain Water, Al Bayan and Alpin, maintaining its position in the UAE at 30% and 28% volume and value shares, respectively. International operations, specifically Saudi Arabia and Kuwait, along with the 5-Gallon HOD business drove Water & Beverage revenues. The Group’s Food category also sustained its growth trajectory with net revenue up by 30% year on year. Flour in the agribusiness displayed a 12% growth in top-line versus last year on strong domestic volume.

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September 2019

News

Louvre Abu Dhabi to open new restaurant with menu by Michelin star chef

UAE-based Prime Group awards Filipino manufacturer halal certification UAE-headquartered Prime Group, a quality and compliance solutions provider in Asia, the Middle East and North Africa, has awarded a facility of The Pure Foods Hormel Company, Inc. the halal certification. The Pure Foods Hormel Company, a food manufacturer in the Philippines, produces TENDER JUICY Chicken Franks and PUREFOODS Corned Beef. “Consumers today are now demonstrating a shift in eating and shopping habits. There’s an increased consumer awareness of the nutritional benefits of halal-certified food products. We’re delighted to

support Pure Foods Hormel, conducting the necessary inspections, assessments and halal certification to enable them to export their products to a wider audience in the UAE and its neighbouring countries,” says Salah Ameen,

vice chairman at Prime Group. Under Prime Group’s business entity, Prime Certification & Inspection, a series of assessments on a facility of The Pure Foods – Hormel Company, Inc. were conducted.

Private VOX Cinema opens at Kempinski Hotel Mall of the Emirates Louvre Abu Dhabi will partner with French hospitality company Barrière Group to turn the museum’s restaurant into the first Abu Dhabi-based branch of the company’s well-known brasserie-style restaurant Fouquet’s. Opening in 2020, the restaurant’s menu will be created in collaboration with renowned French chef Pierre Gagnaire, head chef and owner of a restaurant under his own name, and will include a number of Fouquet’s signature dishes as well as those reflecting the local culture and the tastes of an international clientèle.

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Kempinski Hotel Mall of the Emirates has launched a new movie theatre experience in partnership with VOX Cinemas. A first-of-its-kind, the in-hotel theatre comprises two distinct areas – a screening room with fifteen plush seats,

and a lounge area featuring a bar and dining section complete with a marble table. Waiter service is part of the experience and guests can choose from a premium food and beverage menu with dishes and drinks prepared to order

throughout their four-hour stay in the cinema. Options include bites such as mezze platters, premium French cheese selections, burgers, grilled meats, seafood, and fresh salads as well as a range of desserts. www.hotelnewsme.com


What if sustainable sourcing was simple? Origin Green, the world’s first national food sustainability programme is Ireland’s commitment to a safe, secure food supply far into the future. Members are audited at every step, making it the only independently verified programme of its kind. With over 90% of Irish food and drink exports coming from participating members, finding a sustainable supplier has never been easier. So make sustainability key to a reliable food supply for your business and your customers for generations to come. Visit OriginGreen.com to learn more.

The world’s first national food sustainability programme


September 2019

Appointments

Appointments

For all the latest News, Visit www.hotelnewsme.com Follow us on Facebook for up-to-the-minute breaking news Read the latest edition on www.hotelnewsme.com

MeliĂŁ Desert Palm Dubai names new general manager MeliĂŁ Desert Palm Dubai has appointed Nathalie Cockayne as its new general manager. She joins Melia Hotels International from Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group. A British national born in Hong Kong, Cockayne moved to the UAE and began her career at Burj Al Arab

New hotel manager joins Marriott Harbour Hotel & Suites

Dubai Marriott Harbour Hotel & Suites has appointed Darin Davies as its new hotel manager. Davies started his hospitality career with Marriott in London, and held roles across different

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operational and sales disciplines, which include front of house manager, sales manager, rooms division manager, food and beverage manager, director of operations and director of sales and marketing.

Dress Best Uniforms and Corporate Wear appoints new managing director for the Middle East and Africa region Dress Best Uniforms and Corporate Wear has appointed Tolga Neftci as its new managing director for the Middle East and Africa region. The company was established in 1995 as a custommade uniform supplier based in

Istanbul, Turkey. According to the company, Neftci will be based in Dubai, overseeing the entire Operation in the region, and focusing on the commercial strategy and growth agenda for 15 countries. www.hotelnewsme.com


Elegant. Secure. Unique.

VingCard Allure With VingCard Allure, your guests will feel right at home with the hotel industry’s first “no lock on the door” locking solution. With its elegant minimalistic design, VingCard Allure provides secure convenience for your guests, while adding an array of customizable features that help to streamline operations via the unique and customizable wall panel display. Allure is alsocompatible with VingCard’s patented Visionline system, adding even greater functionality than ever before.

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Experience a safer and more open world


September 2019

openings & Launches

Souk Madinat Jumeirah launches Global Dining campaign Souk Madinat Jumeirah has launched a Global Dining campaign, where Asian fastcasual dining concept Noodle House, Irish pub McGettigan’s and Taverna Greek Kitchen will join a line-up of restaurants in rolling out dedicated menus until the end of September. The modern marketplace with its traditional Middle Eastern design is undergoing its biggest renovation to date, including an expanded portfolio of international cuisines brought to life through homegrown F&B concepts.

Rove Healthcare City’s Junk Food “Vrunch” returns

The Daily at Rove Healthcare City will host Flavors by Zendy and Dubai Vegan Days’ Junk Food Vrunch, which features vegan versions of junk food favourites and is priced at AED 99. The Vrunch Vegan Brunch series, in collaboration with plant-based chef Zendy Marsam and Dubai Vegan Days, will return starting September 7. Guests will be served a three-course feast of meat-free, vegan dishes, containing no preservatives or nasty additives. Diners can kick things off with an unlimited starter salad buffet. 16

Hotel & Catering NEWS ME

Four new dining venues open at Yas Mall

DRIFT Beach Dubai reopens for new season

Four new dining venues, namely Vapiano, Off The Hook, Kailash Parbat and Zadina, have opened at Yas Mall, bringing the selection of food and beverage offerings to 72 outlets.

DRIFT Beach Dubai has reopened its doors for the new season. Nestled in One&Only Royal Mirage hotel, entry to the beach club will be priced at AED 200 daily until the end of September.

Sunset Hospitality Mina’s Kitchen introduces Group to open seafood concept new concept in Meydan Hotel, Mina’s Kitchen, located in The Westin Mina bring Sweet Chick Seyahi, has launched a seafood market concept. At Maritime Fresh, which takes to the UAE place every Thursday from 7pm to 11pm,

Sunset Hospitality’s Mood Rooftop Lounge, a bar and restaurant, is set to open in October at Meydan Hotel. The venue will be set on the rooftop of the Nad Al Sheba hotel. An adults-only space, it will comprise an exotic garden lounge, in addition to a space where guests can find hubbly bubbly.

guests will dine on unlimited seafood for four hours, including free-flowing beverages at packages starting from AED 249.

Publique launches new daily cheese menu

The restaurant, located in Souk Madinat Jumeirah, will be serving cheese alongside complimentary grape, including Tartfiflette for AED 220, fondue for AED 230 and a Raclette or Pierrade plate for AED 290 for two. www.hotelnewsme.com


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September 2019

Cover Story

Power Players Dubai Retail’s homegrown restaurant management company JRG Dubai’s rebrand to Sarood Hospitality has been making headlines. Here, Nabil Ramadhan, chief executive officer of Dubai Retail & Sarood Hospitality and Spencer Ayers, managing director at Sarood Hospitality discuss the strategic move Please tell us more about the rebranding and what it’s going to achieve for the group. Ramadhan: The creation of Sarood Hospitality comes as Dubai Retail aims to reinvent a number of its unique F&B outlets to continue to be ahead of market trends, while meeting the needs of increasingly sophisticated consumers. Sarood Hospitality is much more than a name; it’s a vision and philosophy that sets a clear direction for Dubai Retail’s future as an independent leader in restaurant management and world-class concept development born in Dubai. In this sense, the name change is a reflection of the organisation’s aim to become a leading and market-dominating hospitality company that disrupts and challenges the status quo, with unique and sustainable concepts which go beyond expectations.

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Ayers: The rebrand has been in the process for some time, chiefly as a strategic conduit for expansion beyond the Jumeirah footprint. The launch of JRG Dubai’s first two venues outside of Jumeirah-owned properties in December 2019 (The Duck Hook and Hillhouse Brasserie, housed at Dubai Hills Golf Club) highlighted the potential of the JRG Dubai brand portfolio and acted as a major milestone in the organisation’s growth cycle. Why “sarood”? Can you tell us more about the name and what it means for the essence of the new brand? Ramadhan: Sarood Hospitality is derived from the Arabic word “sarood”, which refers to the traditional woven mats decorated elaborately and used in the presentation of food during meals. Sarood Hospitality is interwoven in the fabric of

the emirate, drawing its inspiration from its roots in Emirati heritage and how ageold cultural practises and norms remain relevant in modern UAE society. What’s in the pipeline for Sarood? What developments can we expect for the rest of 2019 and the coming years? Ayers: As a full-service hospitality brand, Sarood Hospitality’s portfolio includes Al Nafoorah, The Noodle House, Pierchic, Flow, The Duck Hook, Hillhouse Brasserie, Khaymat Al Bahar, Pai Thai, Perry & Blackwelder’s, Segreto and Trattoria Toscana. Immediate expansion plans are in the pipeline, and our focus remains on driving domestic growth, meeting current market trends and upgrading experiences to fit customers’ evolving interests. Aside from a new look and feel, the Sarood Hospitality team has undergone an www.hotelnewsme.com


August 2019

Cover Story

Hotel & Catering NEWS ME

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September 2019

Cover Story

Aside from a new look and feel, the Sarood Hospitality team has undergone an extensive period of internal review over the last six months that will define the overall business moving forward. extensive period of internal review over the last six months that will define the overall business moving forward – from key strategic developments in our areas of operation, expansion and development, to noteworthy changes in terms of defining work culture. We currently have concepts in the final stages of development and due to open in 2020. We recently launched the expansion of The Noodle House brand with the addition of four new venues: Jumeirah Beach Residence (JBR) in September 2019, Nakheel Mall on The Palm Jumeirah in November 2019, the upcoming Dubai Hills Mall in February 2020 and our first entry into the UAE capital, a new restaurant at Reem Mall on Reem Island, in the fourth quarter of 2020. Future plans include extensive refurbishment programmes of existing restaurants, driving key talent acquisitions and progressing digital transformation across the group’s portfolio. 20

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Please give us details on the refurbishment programmes of existing restaurants, key talent acquisitions and digital transformations in store for Sarood. Ayers: In terms of refurbishments, to give one example, Pai Thai is undergoing extensive enhancements this summer and will temporarily close to allow for the completion of renovations. Following thorough planning, we’re very excited that Pai Thai is embarking on such a major

transformation. While the restaurant’s award-winning signature dishes will remain untouched, the new look of our much-loved concept will significantly enhance the overall consumer and dining experience. The brand-new Pai Thai will be worth the wait and will re-open in October 2019. Our current focus is on the expansion of our existing brands. Aside from the four new outlets at The Noodle House, we’ll also have a new Flow venue set to www.hotelnewsme.com


September 2019

Cover Story

next phase of our growth, as we usher Sarood Hospitality into a new and exciting era. Ayers: With the expansion of our brand offerings, we’ve made several senior, strategic appointments to expand our talent pool. Maria Bloss was appointed as head of sales, tasked with managing and expanding the Group’s renowned premium casual dining brand portfolio. Additionally, Steven Holloway and Stefan Borchardt were appointed as operations manager and brand chef for The Noodle House, which is quickly expanding with four new outlets set to open. Ramadhan: Tech and digital platforms have been major game changers in the F&B industry – one of our immediate focus areas is progressing digital transformation across the group’s portfolio as part of an aggressive wider initiative by our parent company Dubai Holding. It’s one of our intentions to become a tech-enabled platform; we want AI integration woven right from BOH inventory and purchasing through to FOH service driving an enhanced, truly personalised customer experience.

open in Q1 2020. In the coming months, we’ll also see the evolution of Khaymat Al Bahar – a recent addition to our portfolio – into a second venue of our successful traditional Lebanese brand, Al Nafoorah. We have concepts in the final stages of development, due to open in 2020 Ramadhan: We appointed Spencer Ayers as Sarood Hospitality’s managing director in June 2019 to enhance our regional and international status, and embrace

adaptability and accessibility as pillars of our future growth. As a seasoned business leader, Spencer’s pivotal roles within the hospitality industry in both the UK and UAE have delivered a wealth of international experience. As a specialist in franchising and turnaround transformation, Spencer’s strategic skills, comprehensive experience and deep understanding of international concept development will be invaluable in the

Ayers: At Hillhouse Brasserie, for example, we’ve recently installed a smart kitchen garden for growing herbs – a farm-totable journey of less than 12 feet! With The Noodle House openings, interactive screens will form part of the guest journey, but this is just the beginning. The advancement of technology allows restaurants to utilise digital platforms, and customers to find restaurants, read reviews and decide where to go/as well as bringing the restaurant experience to them. The guest journey needs to focus on convenience and experience, and technology helps achieve the same along with personalisation options. What aspect of the F&B industry are you most interested in focusing on/tackling following the rebrand to improve overall customer experience? Ramadhan: In addition to improving Hotel & Catering NEWS ME

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September 2019

Cover Story

customer experience via refurbishments and operations following the hire of new talent, we’re looking at several other ways to improve overall customer experience. Looking at the market, there’s more room for homegrown concepts – unique, fun-dining, creative venues inspired by a multi-cultural and social media savvy generation of culinary “artists”. There’s a call for more ethical and sustainable business practices across numerous industries including F&B – this demand is already there, we see customers opting for brands and venues who are taking the stance to work with local farmers, committed to using ethicallysourced produce, removing plastic from FOH operations, working with suppliers to introduce alternatives to single-use superfluous plastic, supporting operations that look at minimal wastage/ food donations and more… What do you think sets Sarood apart from other groups? Ayers: As we evolve and step into a new era, we’ll be rolling out our aligned core values and a robust CSR strategy – shoring up all of the achievements made by JRG Dubai in the last few years including introducing popular homegrown F&B concepts and shaping the F&B industry’s sustainable operational practices. Fundamentally, we’ll look to further what we have successfully created as JRG Dubai, elevating the city’s F&B landscape with a vision for further expansion and cementing our efforts to introduce the latest in sustainable innovation within a progressive working culture. Our focus on diversification and the empowerment of people sets us apart. As part of the rebrand, we’re cementing our work culture and values; Sarood – formerly JRG Dubai – has always been an independent restaurant group, as such our people and teams have always been empowered to function independently, driving our concepts, constantly working to improve our operational practices and wider team development. As part of the entire exercise and planning around the Sarood rebrand, we 22

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September 2019

Cover Story

One of our immediate focus areas is progressing digital transformation across the group’s portfolio as part of an aggressive wider initiative by our parent company Dubai Holding. have unearthed our core values and are outlining a robust roadmap for the wider working culture at Dubai Retail (inclusive of Sarood); these values that have been embedded in JRG’s working culture are being cemented and articulated within the wider repositioning of the Group, and the people power piece is a key element within the wider working culture philosophy. What are your plans for Expo 2020 and how are you planning on being a part of the exhibition? Ramadhan: The focus on food and beverage offerings as we lead up toward Expo 2020 is exciting for both the industry at large and for the Dubai dining scene as a whole. Dubai is a hub for some of the world’s most popular concepts, from homegrown to world-first restaurants. The city is fast becoming recognised as a global culinary destination with its own burgeoning food culture. With a rise in visitors for Expo 2020, brands will experience new opportunities as tourists/ exhibitors look to dine in new and exciting ways. The Expo 2020 itself is looking to create an International Food Hub, offering tourists and visitors alike options to suit a myriad of tastes, budgets and dietary preferences. It’s an exciting time for homegrown brands across the city to tap into an international audience, take advantage of the AI and innovation on showcase specific to the F&B sector, and truly further position Dubai as a global

dining destination. Our target is to be 100% free from single-use plastic by Expo 2020. Why is sustainability your priority and how are you planning on keeping it “green”? Ramadhan: As we evolve and step into a new era, we’ll be rolling out our aligned core values and a robust CSR strategy – shoring up all of the achievements made by JRG Dubai in the last few years including introducing popular homegrown F&B concepts and shaping the F&B industry’s sustainable operational practices. Fundamentally, we’ll look to further what we’ve successfully created as JRG Dubai and elevate the city’s F&B landscape with a vision for further expansion and cementing our efforts to introduce the latest in sustainable innovation within a progressive working culture for the good of tomorrow. There’s a call for more ethical and sustainable business practices across numerous industries including F&B – this demand is already there, we see customers opting for brands and venues who are taking the stance to work with local farmers, commit to using ethicallysourced produce, removing plastic from FOH operations, working with suppliers to introduce alternatives to single-use superfluous plastic, supporting operations that look at minimal wastage/ food donations and more…

Ayers: Sarood – formerly JRG Dubai – was one of the first F&B operators to lead an industry-wide shift in banning the use of single-use plastics, starting with straws. Following Freedom Pizza’s market-leading stance back in Jan 2018, The Noodle House immediately followed suit and banned the use of plastic straws, cutlery, cocktail sticks and stirrers across all its outlets; the initiative was then rolled out across the Group’s other brands by Q2 2018. In October last year, The Noodle House, which offers home delivery, made the switch to using fully compostable delivery packaging in Q4 2018. In December 2018, the Group’s newest brands which opened at the Dubai Hills Golf Club – The Duck Hook and Hillhouse Brasserie – opened with completely plastic-free FOH operations, even serving house-filtered water in glass bottles. In March 2019, Pierchic hosted the Sustainability Summit with a panel of UAE F&B heavyweights, led by Dr Martin Blake, to discuss current issues and opportunities within the sector such as tackling single-use plastics and ethical product sourcing methods; the panel also explored potential cost saving actions that could impact restaurants’ bottom line. In June, Pierchic reiterated its commitment to ethically sourced produce with a dedicated sustainable menu, marking World Oceans Day. We have recently undergone an extensive audit of both our FOH and BOH functions to outline an aggressive action plan to rid ourselves entirely of plastic – partnering with Pure Cog we’re currently working to replace plastic cling wrap with a nonharmful biodegradable substitute. As the world grows more aware of our role in preserving the environment, we’ll see customers calling for F&B operators to adopt more sustainable practices and support local producers and suppliers (thereby also reducing carbon footprint). As we mentioned previously, our target is to be 100% free from single-use plastic by Expo 2020. Hotel & Catering NEWS ME

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September 2019

chain of the month

Hilton Hilton is a global hospitality company with a portfolio of 17 world-class brands comprising nearly 5,900 properties with more than 939,000 rooms, in 114 countries and territories. The company earned a spot on the 2018 World’s Best Workplaces list, and has welcomed more than three billion guests in its 100-year history. Through the award-winning guest loyalty programme Hilton Honors, more than 94 million members who book directly with Hilton can earn points for hotel stays and experiences, and enjoy instant benefits including digital check-in with room selection, Digital Key and Connected Room.

MENA region Current properties: Hilton currently operates 68 hotels across the MENA including Waldorf Astoria, Conrad, Hilton Hotels & Resorts, DoubleTree by Hilton, Hilton Garden Inn and Hampton by Hilton. In the next five years, the brand is expected to almost double in size in the UAE to almost 50 hotels and will quadruple in size in KSA to more than 50 hotels, while growth remains strong across the rest of the GCC and North Africa. Upcoming properties: Hilton currently has almost 100 hotels in its development pipeline, with new hotels being developed across the region. It will also introduce new brands into the region in the next five years including Canopy by Hilton, its lifestyle brand. Hilton has also announced a deal with Alshaya Group for 70 Hampton by Hilton hotels across the MENA, Turkey and Russia, with many of these hotels set to open in the next seven years.

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September 2019

chain of the month

About Hilton Honors Hilton Honors is the award-winning guest loyalty programme for Hilton’s 17 brands, comprising nearly 5,900 properties in 114 countries and territories. Hilton Honors members who book directly through preferred Hilton channels have access to instant benefits, including a flexible payment slider that allows members to choose nearly any combination of Points and money to book a stay, an exclusive member discount and free standard Wi-Fi. Members also enjoy popular digital tools available exclusively through the Hilton Honors mobile app, where Hilton Honors members can check-in, choose their room, access their room using a Digital Key and use ‘order ahead’ to request extra pillows or their favourite snack for their room prior to arrival. Members can redeem their Points for free nights, premium merchandise and items on Amazon Shop with Points, make charitable contributions or gain access to events through Hilton Honors Experiences, such as exclusive artist connections and VIP concerts with Live Nation®, and racing experiences with McLaren Racing. The programme is free to join.

In Numbers

68 Operating hotels

100 In the pipeline

William Costley Vice President, Arabian Peninsula and Turkey What are the main challenges you face in hotel management and operations? One of the main challenges facing the industry is talent retention and acquisition: the war on talent. Our ability to ensure we have excellent team members who are well-trained, highly skilled, highly motivated and engaged – this is what guests demand and this is what we work hard to deliver. A great example of this is the Great Place to Work Survey, where we’ve achieved the number one position for the past three years in KSA, are number one in Turkey and number three here in the UAE. This is across all companies and industries, not just hospitality, and we’re incredibly proud of this achievement as an indicator that our Team Members value working for Hilton. Another major challenge is understanding and anticipating guests’ changing needs and desires to ensure

we deliver a consistently excellent experience to our guests no matter where they’re staying with us around the world. Guests are increasingly more sophisticated in their choices and it’s our job to stay on top of current trends and anticipate our guests’ needs in terms of hotel design, F&B, technology, the in-room experience, check-in, etc. We do this in a number of ways, but key

to this is listening to our customers and knowing our customers, the more we talk to and understand our customers, the better they can tell us what they need. With some 90 million plus Hilton Honors members, we have a great resource here and we constantly talk to our Honors members and other guests to find out what’s important to them, so we can deliver tailored experiences to our guest across our industry leading portfolio of brands. Hilton prides itself on its relationship with its guests and has developed programmes and initiatives based on guest feedback and our understanding of guests needs. The introduction of Digital Key, where guests can book and choose their room using the Hilton Honors app, and then use their mobile phone as a key, is an example of using powerful technology to enhance guest experience. Likewise, the design

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September 2019

chain of the month

of hotel lobbies as more social and convenient work spaces for guests is something we know they want, and so we deliver that experience for them. How do you respond to any type of guest dissatisfaction? A positive and faultless guest experience is what we aim to deliver to our millions of guests around the world time and time again. When a guest isn’t fully satisfied, we encourage feedback and empower our teams to do all they can to ensure that our guests are heard and listened to, that their concerns are taken seriously and that a resolution is reached as soon as possible to the guest’s satisfaction. At Hilton, we provide all of our staff with the necessary training required to deal with challenging scenarios, should they arise, to support and help our guests and do our best to make it right whenever a guest may have not been satisfied. One key pillar of this is our MAKE IT RIGHT campaign. This programme is currently focused on our Hilton Hotels & Resorts and DoubleTree by Hilton brands and focuses on empowering team members to ensure they can handle guest complaints should they arise. We’re committed to delivering our Brand Promise and building guest loyalty through our MAKE IT RIGHT commitment which is: “If you’re not satisfied with your stay, let us know and we’ll MAKE IT RIGHT.” With this commitment to our Guests, Team Members are empowered to consistently recognise our most loyal Guests, proactively look for ways to meet unanticipated guest needs and take ownership of resolving guest problems. We believe this programme is a great advantage in addressing guest issues and challenges at our hotels. Likewise, at our Hampton by

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Hilton brand, we commit to the Hampton Guarantee – where if you’re not satisfied with your stay and your experience at the hotel, you don’t pay. However, the Hampton® Guarantee is more than just a money-back guarantee, but rather it reinforces the emotional connection that allows the brand to make guests Happy@ Hampton. Satisfaction may not always be about getting a refund; guests want to be understood and heard and we work hard to deliver a great guest experience at all our brands and to immediately fix challenges as and whenever they may arise. What’s your vision for the future of the chain? As a global company, Hilton has a very clear Vision: “To fill the earth with the light and warmth of hospitality by delivering exceptional experiences – every hotel, every guest, every time”. Within the region, our job is to bring that Vision to life and to ensure it makes sense culturally here in the Middle East, Africa and Turkey, delivering the right hotels and brands from our portfolio of industry-leading brands, and ensuring that we’re meeting and exceeding our guests’ needs. For example, this year we introduced our Hampton by Hilton brand to the UAE with a hotel at Dubai Airport, and a new Hilton Garden Inn Al Jadaf Cultural Village, also opening our first city centre

Waldorf Astoria, with a hotel in DIFC. We’ve signed a Canopy by Hilton, our lifestyle brand, for Avenues Riyadh, and introduced our luxury LXR collection brand to Habtoor City. We have very robust technology platforms that enable our guests to choose their room on the Hilton App before check in. We’re also rolling out Connected Room, where guests will be able to use their mobile devices to customise their rooms to meet their experience needs, such as running their own Netflix accounts through the TV in their room, being able to set the temperature in the room, ordering in-room dining or booking a table at a restaurant, all from your mobile phone or tablet, truly enhancing guest experience. It puts guests front and centre and gives them what they want. One of our key areas of focus is ensuring that we have the best, most motivated Team Members in the industry – and we’re committed to this. This year, we’ve been voted #1 in Great Place to Work in KSA and Turkey and #3 here in the UAE – we believe this is testament to the great company culture we’ve created in the region which recognises Team Members as individuals, supports diversity in its many forms and allows people the opportunity to grow and thrive with Hilton both professionally and as individuals.

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September 2019

Event Preview

Reshaping the Hospitality Industry: The Hotel Show Nathan Waugh, portfolio director – Hospitality division at dmg Events, tells Hotel & Catering News Middle East more about one of the most highly anticipated events of the year You’ve added the Design Challenge and brought back The Chef’s Table; tell us more about why you’ve decided to do that and how any new additions are expected to draw more visitors. The Chef ’s Table, supported by The Emirates Culinary Guild, proved to be a hugely popular feature at the Hotel Show in 2018, so not only will it be returning for 2019, but it will be expanded, with more sponsors and more competing teams. Team entries are complete and we’re looking forward to seeing (and tasting!) the innovative dishes some of the region’s best chefs will be creating. The Hotel Room Design Challenge 28

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is a brand new feature at The Hotel Show – offering a platform for some of the region’s leading interior design and fit out companies to create a conceptual hotel room at the event. Based around the theme ‘Dubai: A World of Opportunity a Lifetime of Stories’ and designed to be in synergy with the themes of Expo 2020 as well as the 20-year anniversary of The Hotel Show, visitors will have the opportunity to vote for the best concept, with the winner to be announced at the Middle East Hospitality Awards on September 18. These days, it’s not enough for trade events to just provide visitors with access

to a range of products. It’s crucial to also be able to inform, inspire and entertain. Features such as The Hotel Room Design Challenge and The Chef’s Table, along with many more, do exactly that. Our visitors look forward to engaging with these features as part of their visit every year. What were some of the main changes you’ve seen in the industry, and how have you adapted the format accordingly? We see that “cost efficiency” and “value for money” are currently the key phrases across the industry, with supply in the hotel sector outstripping current demand www.hotelnewsme.com


September 2019

Event Preview

and creating pressure. While we’re positive about an upcoming shift in this balance, we’re addressing these current concerns nevertheless through a wide range of educational and timely topics across two seminar theatres that are free to attend. In the Hospitality Tech Efficiency Forum, we’ll be focusing on a range of technical solutions to enable hospitality businesses to operate with greater efficiency, leading to cost savings. One full day will be devoted to the HTNG Tech Strategy Day with cutting-edge topics such as “monetising guest sentiment”, which will be sure to provide some key strategies for greater efficiency and revenue generation. The Middle East Hospitality Leaders’ Forum will take a more macro view of the industry with a host of the region’s top general managers discussing wideranging issues such as cost efficiency, sustainability and new revenue generation ideas. Who would benefit the most from visiting this year and how many visitors are you expecting? Anyone who’s involved in the hotel and hospitality industry will find something

for them at The Hotel Show this year. Whether you’re a general manager, housekeeper, proprietor, hotelier, architect, interior designer, chef, restaurant manager or from the frontline hospitality team, there are products, installations, features and content sessions at The Hotel Show to leave you feeling inspired and ready to tackle your biggest challenges. Please tell us more about the exhibitors and what they have to offer. This year, we’ve seen big increases across all sectors, but particularly in tableware, dinnerware and glassware. We currently have over 200 brands showcasing their products under these sectors at this year’s event, from exclusive high-end collections to biodegradable eco-friendly and zerowaste selections. We’re delighted to welcome two brand new innovative products in particular, in the Sleep sector; the world’s first completely recyclable mattress, capitalising on the industry’s drive to sustainability, and a world-first – a Sleep Robot by Somnox. The technology is designed to improve users’ sleep patterns and help consumers avoid sleep deprivation and insomnia. Another innovative exhibitor to

highlight, among many, is Dutch Lab. With coffee as an integral part of Arab culture and hospitality, visitors will be excited to see Dutch Lab’s creation, an innovative machine to elevate the coffee brewing process into an art performance, a must-see for all coffee aficionados. How will exhibitors benefit from being a part of the show? For the very first time, The Hotel Show comes together with six complementary co-located events to make up the Middle East Design & Hospitality Week. MEDHW will be the biggest celebration of all things design and hospitality in the region, providing a compelling reason to attract key buyer groups from the GCC, East & North Africa, Indian sub-continent and Russia to name just a few. Please tell us more about the 2019 edition of the Middle East Hospitality Awards, any new awards? What can we expect? The incredible volume, innovation and quality of the entries has shone through this year. Ninety eight different properties from six different countries have made it onto this year’s shortlist, which is easily the highest in the event’s history, and a reflection of the fact that the regional hospitality industry is now leading the way in world standards. The different approaches that regional operators are now taking to compete for guests across different price points, cultures and expectations has also stood out. For example, the entries for our new technology award highlight some really ingenious projects that different operators have recently conceived and delivered here in the Middle East, which are adding value to the guest experience on one hand and delivering considerable cost savings on the other. We’re also very proud to have a true legend of Dubai’s tourism and hospitality industry – Colm McLoughlin, executive vice chairman and CEO of Dubai Duty Free, coming along to this year’s ceremony to accept the Lifetime Achievement Award presented by last year’s recipient and another industry legend Gerald Lawless. Hotel & Catering NEWS ME

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Event Preview

Meet the Exhibitors

The Hotel Show Dubai is set to lead the way in reshaping and redefining the region's rapidly growing hospitality industry and tourist trade; meet some of the exhibitors who will take part in the event

Saudi Arabia

3D Artworks Gallery

Austria

Advantage Austria 3D Artworks Gallery specialises in Orientalist art based on authentic themes, adopting a method that involves creating multiple layers of the same picture. This form of art transforms a normal picture from a two-dimensional to three-dimensional artwork, bringing it to life, reproduced in a 3D decoupage style.

ADVANTAGE AUSTRIA is the official Austrian trade promotion organisation. With more than 110 offices in over 70 countries, they help over 50,000 Austrian businesses develop their international markets and promote their products and services around the world. They provide hands-on, practical support for international businesses wishing to build partnerships with and invest in Austria. Eight Austrian companies will exhibit bed linen/table linen and towels, architectural and design practices/interior landscaping, hotel services/building systems, interior design services, entertainment solutions and more.

Stand: SS1I164 msa-artworks.com

Stand: SS1B137 advantageaustria.org/ae

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September 2019

Event Preview

United Kingdom

Alex Andrew London Based in Mayfair, Alex Andrew London offers luxury hotels and restaurants, private jet and yacht operators, and private residences a collection of fine teas. All teas are available in loose-leaf pouches or biodegradable hand-stitched tea bags, sourced from only premium estates and gardens. Stand: SS2A82 alexandrewlondon.com

South Korea

DUTCH LAB DUTCH LAB is the coffee and dining brand of Design Rangers, specialised in cold drip coffee brewers with a brewing process of 36 drops every minute. At The Hotel Show, the company will be launching a limited edition model called Burj AKMA in acetate and 14/24 carat gold, of which only ten pieces will be made. Stand: SS2A99 dutch-lab.com

Germany

Foldart GmbH

FOLDART GMBH is a manufacturer of Wall Designobjekts, made from paper, aluminium or copper. Folded without a single cut or glue, each individual FOLDART is produced using special technology, merging of the art of folding with design. Stand: SS1B140 foldart.de Hotel & Catering NEWS ME

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September 2019

Event Preview

United Arab Emirates

ASSA ABLOY Global Solutions Manit Narang, Vice President, MEAI

autonomously overseeing the performance of motorised systems, such as elevators, HVAC units, escalators and refrigerators. Through the use of AI and BLE sensors, this can provide hoteliers with ample time to identify and correct any maintenance issue before it becomes a greater financial liability or guest-facing concern. Vostio Location Solutions will also be subsequently enhanced to maximise guest satisfaction by identifying a guest’s specific location within the premises or as they arrive. With the simple download of a hotel’s app onto a guest’s device, BLE beacons will be able to determine whether a person is located near a property’s entrance, restaurant, bar or spa, and send promotional messaging relevant to their instant needs. Later enhancements will additionally allow guests to use BLE beacons as a way-finding feature, with directions seamlessly transmitted to their device in real time, similar to automobile GPS user experiences.

What’s your company promoting at The Hotel Show this year? ASSA ABLOY Global Solutions will be showcasing an array of security access solutions during The Hotel Show Dubai 2019, including VingCard electronic door locks, Mobile Access, Elsafe in-room safes, and the latest in cloud-based access management and hotel staff safety technologies. Please tell us more about any exciting upcoming product launches? ASSA ABLOY Global Solutions will be showcasing its recently launched Vostio Location Solutions with Staff Alert functionality. Combining the latest in cloud and Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) gateway technology, Vostio Location Solutions is set to take hotel security and efficiency to a whole new level. With its Staff Safety alert functionality and in the event of an emergency, Vostio Location Solutions equips each staff member with the ability to transmit a distress signal to nearby BLE gateways, which through the cloud then instantly provides response personnel with exact floor and room details via SMS to ensure timely arrival. What’s in the pipeline for your company? As a cloud-based and fully scalable platform, Vostio Location Solutions will ultimately be able to operate on the same network as an array of expense-reducing and revenue-enhancing functionalities. These include tracking the precise location of amenities, such as maid carts, baby cribs, room service trays or AV equipment, in real time. Others include the offsetting of operational costs by 32

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What are some of the biggest trends and innovations in your market? In addition to the industry moving towards the benefits of locationbased technology, hoteliers are also increasingly identifying the multiple advantages of cloud-based security access management platforms. With ASSA ABLOY Global Solutions’ Vostio Access Management for example, they’re able to leverage cloud-based technology to cost-effectively ensure the highest standard of security and data confidentiality at all times. Simultaneously maximising operational efficiency, hotel security and guest convenience, Vostio Access Management’s cloud-based functionality allows staff members to access its features via web browser from either the front desk, back office or on the go. Available functionalities include the ability to control guest and staff access with remote activation or deactivation of RFID key cards and mobile keys. Staff are further able to review all access attempts and any key card creation, providing an extra layer of security with the ability to act swiftly should a threat arise. As a truly next generation access management system, Vostio Access Management also leverages the cloud to receive regular software updates, ensuring that the platform is always immune from newly identified threats or vulnerabilities and at no additional cost to hoteliers. This ability not only ensures that any new security risk is promptly dealt with, but also allows on-site staff to focus on other areas for a more streamlined and efficient hotel operation. Due to its cloud-based platform, Vostio also minimises operational expenses by completely eliminating the need for costly on-site servers and functioning as a fully online solution. Vostio further sidesteps time-consuming on-site maintenance, and with the www.hotelnewsme.com


September 2019

Event Preview

availability of standardised monthly license subscriptions, can reduce costs even further. Developed as a future-proof system, Vostio is equipped to seamlessly integrate with new property upgrades and is also compatible with existing door hardware. What are some of the most important solutions you’ll be showcasing? In addition to Vostio Location Solutions and Vostio Access management being featured attractions at the show, ASSA ABLOY Global Solutions will also be providing attendees with demonstrations of an array of cutting-edge security access solutions. These include Mobile Access, an industry-leading platform that allows guests to use their own personal devices as a secure digital key. With ASSA ABLOY's patented Seos technology, all digital keys and room number details are fully encrypted and transmitted to guest devices using a secure communications channel. Once received, the information is then stored within a digital vault located within the mobile app. When a guest presents the device to the appropriate door lock, Seos again transmits digital key data via a secure channel, ensuring that only those who are authorised are ever able to gain access. With demonstrations of its VingCard Essence door lock, ASSA ABLOY Global Solutions will also showcase how hoteliers can maximise their security abilities while enhancing a property’s unique design. Using a minimalistic design approach, Essence encases all electronic components within the door itself, leaving visible only a sleek RFID/BLE reader and providing hoteliers with an array of door handle options. VingCard Essence also utilises the most advanced encryption technology to eliminate the threat of unauthorised key card cloning. It’s further designed to be future-proof compatible, providing hoteliers with the ability to seamlessly implement Mobile Access the moment that brand requirements or guest demands change. Stand: ArD211 assaabloy.com

Sweden

The Humble Co.

The Humble Co. develops eco-friendly and socially responsible health/wellness products, with a twist, offered at hotel chains including Rosewood, Nordic Choice Hotel, Scandic and many more. The company will be highlighting its fully customisable amenity kit, where different options are available: different packaging solutions, sustainable toothbrush alternatives and add-ons such as toothpaste, floss pick and cotton buds. Stand: SS2F110 thehumble.co Hotel & Catering NEWS ME

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September 2019

Movers & Shakers

Positively Gleeful

For Glee Hospitality Solutions, being consistently able to bring joy through success to clients is the ultimate priority. Managing director Abdul Kader Saadi walks us through the right way to make it in the regional F&B landscape

Tell us a bit more about your background. I have around 25 years of experience in hospitality, having worked in the UK, France, Switzerland and Morocco. I studied hotel management, then worked in Paris for six or seven years – in industrial catering, for the fourth largest company in Europe. The group served over 100,000 meals daily across France, Monte-Carlo and Morocco. I then moved to London, and started working in a more high-end capacity, setting up outlets for a private company which received the Michelin Star. In the end of 2007, I moved to Dubai and started working on Gramercy in 2009 (opened in 2010) – which was our first project. I established Glee Hospitality Solutions in 2009 on the back of that as we saw demand for such services. Following that, we worked on some projects in Abu Dhabi, and word was out that we were doing well, so this is how the company started growing. What services do you offer clients? We develop new food and beverage concepts, all the way from the initial stages, until the opening and management. We conduct financial feasibility and market studies, secure prime locations, develop operational manuals, and work on kitchen design, branding, and recruitment. We also work on menu engineering, marketing and PR support and coordination, interior design conceptualisation, and more. We have more and more clients asking us to run the business for them, hence we’ve built the back office here. In this structure, the restaurant manager reports to us, and we report back to the owners; we provide the full back office structure 34

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Abdul Kader Saadi

from accounting and human resources to procurement as well as area managers Our main pillars are concept creation, opening and management. Glee Hospitality also offers advisory services, where we can work on, for example, tenancy mix, auditing or advisory on acquisition. What markets have you expanded to? We have opened an office in Saudi Arabia and now have a trade license, and have two upcoming restaurant openings with more than five already in development for 2022 – namely Black Spoon in September and Olé in December. We also opened an office in Egypt, which will be focusing on

investments and is run by my partner who is currently based there. What are your views on the Dubai market and what challenges have you faced? The market in the emirate undergoes swings, but what started as a two-man show has now grown into a big company. Glee Hospitality has successfully launched over 50 plus F&B concepts and unveiled 70 plus outlets across the region, including the UAE, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Oman, Kuwait and Jordan among others, with a team under management of nearly 350 employees. We’re quite established, and have a solid reputation in the market now. www.hotelnewsme.com


September 2019

Movers & Shakers

No. 57 Boutique

Berri's

The Roost

There’s a lot of competition, but some coming in and more going out. In this market, many underestimate how difficult it is. I think that individuals from the industry or outside underestimate the amount of work that goes into opening a restaurant and all the different elements required. Also, many may think that what goes into this is a lot of money. We’re not cheap, but we’re not the most expensive, a lot work goes into putting these projects together (many elements to coordinate and plan) – and we’re very well-positioned to make things happen for new F&B businesses. A big change that the market has undergone is also a shift in how consumers are behaving and spending. There’s a market segment that’s feeling the pinch, and is now benefitting from delivery app discounts and two-forone vouchers – something which may negatively impact businesses – in addition to all-inclusive packages offered by hotels. Luckily, Dubai Tourism has been doing a great job with bringing in the numbers, which offsets a bit of the damage which investors may experience due to changes in the market such as oversupply and the abovementioned. However, while consumers now have more options and less loyalty due to the delivery surge, if you have the money, a good product, optimum service and the right marketing activity, you’re very bound to succeed. How does the process flow once a client comes on board and how do you keep things fresh? We have a team for pre-opening which works on keeping concepts varied and creative. We always tell clients, we need 12 weeks to work on these, researching what’s happening outside, getting operations involved, building a brief, putting down what they want the place to be like, identifying the target market and good locations, and more. We often work with local branding agencies as well, and change them up every once in a while to get new ideas in. A full project typically requires a year from the creative part all the way until the opening. Hotel & Catering NEWS ME

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September 2019

MP Interview

A Sun-Soaked Escape

Giving beachgoers a taste of Mediterranean living, Azure Beach is a shoreside retreat that’s more than just that. Here, Azure Beach Managing Partner James Burton tells Hotel & Catering News Middle East all about the urban hangout Tell us more about your background and career journey all the way to Azure. I was lucky enough to have only worked for three hospitality companies in my professional career. I started at the age of 17 collecting glasses for a nightclub called Pangea in Marbella, Spain, and moved with them to the UK to open Pangea in London. I worked with them for five years where I finished up as bar manager. I then moved to Nikki Beach Marbella as a bartender when I was 22 and stayed there for a total of nine years. Nikki Beach was the perfect playground for my career, where I had the opportunity to travel and grow through different positions and locations. It’s where I developed my passion for F&B, eventually finishing as general manager after consecutively opening the Nikki Beach Mallorca, Ibiza and Bali locations. I then joined Sunset Hospitality in 2015 as managing director of one of their nightlife venues and eventually took on the role of managing partner to open Azure Beach and Ammos Greek Restaurant. With close to two decades experience in hospitality and five years in the UAE, I currently work as group operations manager for Sunset Hospitality, while also being the managing partner at these two properties. How are you promoting Azure Beach as the ideal destination for weekenders and holidaymakers all year long? Azure Beach is the city’s favourite beachside hangout, whether you’re a UAE resident or only here on holiday. Apart from the exceptional service, venue layout, menu and experience that guests enjoy, 36

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September 2019

MP Interview

it also has exciting offers throughout the week, and we believe that one of the most effective ways of showcasing our venue and offerings is through social media – the venue is definitely ‘Instagrammable’. That said, we choose to proactively work with a lot of the city’s mainstream consumer media platforms and select local and international influencers – collectively, these have all had a positive effect for Azure. Tell us about your F&B outlets, how are you maintaining success in such a competitive market? Azure Beach concentrates on bringing the

best to our clients and staying ahead of the curve, whether that’s in terms of highquality food and beverages, reasonable pricing or pushing the boundaries with events and activations which are at the forefront of trends. Vogue and Stamina evening R&B pool parties, for example, are two concepts that were very well received. We first launched the pool parties in 2018 in partnership with an events agency, and they’re now the biggest pool parties in Dubai. What’s your plan of action for 2020? We’re expanding and are opening two Azure Beach locations in 2020, bringing

the UAE homegrown concept to international waters. Though we’ve only been operating for three years, we’ve had great success and would like to further that achievement into our upcoming properties by bringing the excellent Azure Beach standard and experience to new clientele in other destinations. As for Azure Beach Dubai, we have an exciting line-up of events planned for 2020 that are sure to level-up everyone’s social calendars. They cover everything from evening pool parties to brunches, lunch deals, picnics, an openair theatre, gastronomy events and so much more. Hotel & Catering NEWS ME

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September 2019

Mp Interview

Reflecting on last year, how successful was it for you? What are some of Azure Beach’s achievements and what excites you at the moment? We had some great milestones in 2018. It’s by no means an easy job to run a fullyfunctional beach club in Dubai, given the temperatures, workload and competition, but we’re happy that the Azure family have managed to secure top-ranking positions on leading social media sites. For example, Azure Beach has topped Tripadvisor’s list of F&B outlets for over six months, garnering over 1,800 reviews so far. Apart from that, the beach attracts some of the most exciting international concerts and events that cater to up to 5000 guests. We’re excited for the year ahead with an impressive line-up of events planned for the coming ‘beach and party’ season. Our strong partnership with Rixos allows us to aim high with the goal of Azure Beach being recognised as the best beach club in Dubai. In terms of service, what factors set you apart and how would you define exceptional customer service? Apart from constantly striving to ensure 38

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we’re serving the freshest and highest grade of produce to our guests, I believe it’s the personal connection between our staff and the guests that sets us apart. At Azure, we treat all staff as we do our managers – there’s mutual respect among everyone regardless of the position. We developed a personal relationship with them, embedding the family culture into the team, which they’ve now built the confidence to extend to our guests. This is how we’ve gained plenty of regulars at Azure. It goes beyond getting their order right, but also more of building a genuine personal connection with them.

understand better. Once you explain things in a personal manner and physically show your team members how it should be done, it’s rare for someone to do the opposite – their best learning is shared by demonstrating rather than dictating it.

How often do you conduct trainings for staff and what are the key areas that you focus on? We have set biweekly trainings, but the learning is constant. If and when any issues occur, its best to find out at an early stage and correct any challenges through hands on training and demonstration. It’s about personally showing staff members what’s wrong and more importantly explaining why it’s wrong, so they

What’s the most unusual request you’ve ever received at Azure Beach? After working for so long in hospitality, I’d like to think that I’ve already heard the most unusual requests, even though sometimes that theory is put to the test. As long as it’s within our moral compass, we look forward to delivering and catering to the most eccentric ideas and requests we receive from our guests, in our own Azure Beach way.

How are you using social media to create brand awareness and to engage your online customers? It’s one thing to know your brand imaging, or your DNA, and another to live it. At Azure Beach, we live and breathe the brand. From our operations through to our online presence, we maintain the same tone and feel.

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29-31 OCT Oct 2019 29-31 2019 DUBAI WORLD TRADE CENTRE Dubai World Trade Centre

Food production, reinvented

Register Now! gulfoodmanufacturing.com #gulfoodmanufacturing

Organised by

Official Knowledge Partner

Official Saudi Arabia Partner

An event by

Powerful Co-Location With

Supporting Media Partners

Official Media Partners

Platinum Sponsor

Strategic Partner

Sponsor

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Hosted Buyer Lounge Sponsor

Official Airline Partner

Official Courier Handler


September 2019

Event Preview

Powerhouses to Reveal the Latest in Food Production at Gulfood Manufacturing 2019 Gulfood Manufacturing, the largest food and beverage processing and packaging show in the Middle East, Asia and Africa, will lift the lid on the reinvention of food production when it returns for its sixth edition from October 29-31 at Dubai World Trade Centre, as manufacturers race to improve efficiency and pricing while complying with increasing regulations. Growing food safety and waste concerns, and a desire to get produce to the market faster and more affordably, are factors driving innovation and impacting equipment producers in a fiercely competitive F&B market. Gulfood 40

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Manufacturing 2019 will address these and other industry issues with the latest in processing technology on show across 81,000 square metres of exhibition space. Tailored networking opportunities at the mega event will also shape the industry’s future, with sector-wide collaboration crucial to meeting challenges, according to Swiss flavours manufacturing powerhouse Givaudan. The firm is making its Gulfood Manufacturing debut this year, aiming to use the platform to seek out partners to “co-create and innovate”. “Some of the challenges we’re seeing include changing consumer attitudes

towards ingredients, origin, labelling, authenticity, sustainability, health and wellness. Consumer attitudes have significantly evolved in recent years – not only in mature markets – and we need to respond with speed, efficiency and new solutions,” says Antonoine Khalil, Givaudan’s commercial head – Africa & the Middle East. Key food innovators on display Another Gulfood Manufacturing debutant from Switzerland, Firmenich, the world’s largest privately-owned fragrance and flavour company, will be showcasing its www.hotelnewsme.com


September 2019

Event Preview

emerging cold chain technologies. Ignacio Ramirez Rico, managing director of Winnow MENA, will address waste reduction through a case study of the Emaar Hospitality Group – the first company to mobilise cutting-edge AI technology into its UAE kitchens. The Summit is among a range of Gulfood Manufacturing features which have cemented the show as a forecasting, trend-tracking and sector education platform. Four features – a Big Buyers Programme, which hosts up to 2,000 pre-selected buyers, Innovation Tours, which provide deep insights into artificial intelligence, machine learning, blockchain and robotics, Gulfood Manufacturing Industry Excellence Awards, designed to inspire, and a probing business talks conference – put the show at the forefront of F&B transformation.

innovations for fat and salt reduction, MSG replacers, taste enhancers and alternative ‘green’ protein solutions amid the trend for sugar reduction and going ‘natural’, which is driving technological innovation. “In tackling today’s malnutrition crisis, our latest technology TastePRINT can reduce up to 100 percent of added sugar naturally while keeping an equal taste experience. This year alone, with our taste modulation technologies, we removed 215 metric tonnes of sugar from products that consumers love, taking 870 billion calories out of their diets,” says Thoger Larsen, VP Flavors IMA, Firmenich. FoodTech Summit will address the future of food Firmenich’s sugar reduction expertise will be leveraged at the second Gulfood Manufacturing FoodTech Summit when

the company’s VP of Taste, Imad Farhat, will discuss the latest developments. The second edition of the Summit will bring together international F&B experts and industry leaders, key decision-makers, and innovators to discuss global market developments and the latest solutions helping the industry improve efficiency, productivity and quality. “The second edition of this eagerly anticipated and crucial Summit will take the industry into the future with the introduction of next-gen technologies including blockchain, AI and robotics which are transforming F&B manufacturing facilities into smart factories,” explained Trixie LohMirmand, senior vice president, Exhibitions & Events, DWTC. Sharing the FoodTech Summit platform will be Sudarsan Thattai, the CIO of Lineage, who will explore

Show information Gulfood Manufacturing now has a well-established reputation as a multibillion-dollar business transaction space with five dedicated sectors to improve the buyer and seller experience: Ingredients, Processing, Packaging, Automation & Controls, and Supply Chain Solutions – that will house more than 1,600 local, regional and international suppliers and industry service providers from 60 countries as well as tens of thousands of visitors. Gulfood Manufacturing 2019 will run alongside co-located events including Private Label and Licensing Middle East Exhibition, the MENA region’s exclusive exhibition for food and non-food FMCG product mix expansion and brand placement, SEAFEX Middle East, the only professional seafood event for the Middle East, Africa and Asia and yummex ME, the no.1 platform for producers and manufacturers spanning the global sweets, confectionery and snacks industry. Gulfood Manufacturing 2019 is open from 10am-6pm on October 29-30 and 10am-5pm on October 31. The show is open to food and beverage industry professionals and visitor attendance is free of charge. For more information, visit gulfoodmanufacturing.com. Hotel & Catering NEWS ME

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Event preview

The Big Food & Beverage Forum 2019

BNC Publishing and Hotel & Catering News Middle East’s The Big Food & Beverage Forum 2019 will take place on Wednesday, November 13 at Hilton Dubai Al Habtoor City From founders and CEOs, to F&B managers, key players, professionals and hotel general managers, the biggest names in the industry come together every year at Hotel & Catering News 42

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ME’s Big Food & Beverage Forum to engage in game-changing discussions and network. Attendees will share their expert analyses on the F&B, tourism and

hospitality sectors. Join 160+ professionals at the event this year, where Hotel & Catering News Middle East will be partnering with some of the biggest names in the UAE, region and globally. www.hotelnewsme.com


september 2019

Event preview

Leaders in Food & Beverage Awards 2019

BNC Publishing and Hotel & Catering News Middle East’s Leaders in Food & Beverage Awards 2019 will take place on Wednesday, November 13 at Hilton Dubai Al Habtoor City. A region with a strong identity when it comes to F&B, the sector is among major beneficiaries when it comes to GCC government economic diversification drives, and has strengthened its foothold on a global level – which has, in turn, had a positive impact on the food service industry and suppliers. Furthermore, the funding allocated to tourism and hospitality has been driving the food and beverage industry as well, with the GCC’s F&B market expected to expand. Its growth will also be propelled

by upcoming events in the region including the Expo 2020 in Dubai. Global reports have revealed that the GCC F&B market is set to reach $34 billion by 2020. With new, emerging concepts such as health-oriented dietary habits, veganism and more as well as innovation in food technology, the need for large-scale events that celebrate the industry and highlight the latest trends arises. International brands and home-grown concepts are invited to take part in the Leaders in Food & Beverage Awards’

ceremony, which will recognise top players in the industry bringing excellence and innovation to the market. Categories include both People and Restaurants, with some exciting new additions that reflect the dynamic nature of the industry. Restaurant Categories recognise the best venues in the region, offering exceptional service and world-class dining experiences, as well as the biggest market disruptors, while People Awards celebrate visionaries, leaders and pioneers.

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Restaurant Categories Leading Sustainable Restaurant At the heart of every successful F&B outlet’s ethos is a commitment to sustainability, a crucial trend that has taken over for the past few years. The Leading Sustainable Restaurant winner will have demonstrated outstanding efforts and achievements with regards to environmentally-friendly practices, sparing no efforts whenever possible to source ingredients ethically and locally, manage waste, and more, while encouraging a sustainable lifestyle among its community and beyond. Leading Healthy Restaurant Setting an example with its health-oriented offerings, this restaurant will boast a menu that caters to a range of diners’ food choices and preferences when it comes to nutritional value. Not only does it serve options for vegans, vegetarians, flexitarians and many others, but the Leading Healthy restaurant must have championed initiatives to educate and inform the masses of the benefits of a balanced lifestyle. Leading Home-grown Restaurant Brand Unique interiors, exceptional service and dishes, and a cuisine connoisseur spearheading the kitchen are among some of the criteria for the winner in this category. This restaurant will have brought something new to the scene and demonstrated consistency, succeeding in garnering its very own loyal customer base in a short period of time. Disruptor of the Year The winner of this category will have changed an aspect of the industry as we know it, putting their own twist on the business. From ground-breaking food truck concepts and foodie gatherings, to game-changing delivery services and multi-functional digital platforms, the Disruptor of the Year’s business model must be original, solid and creative, commanding its own place in the market and triggering positive change. 44

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Best Newcomer The Best Newcomer Award recognises an F&B concept which was launched within this year and has demonstrated remarkable performance. Whether it is a new kid on the block in the street food arena, or a sophisticated venue targeting luxury dining seekers, the winner will have redefined standards and introduced its own flavour to the industry. Best Interior Design When it comes to a 360-degree dining experience, aesthetics and ambience can make or break a setting. Best Interiors and Design, an award which is to be entered as a collaboration between the designer and outlet, recognises an impeccably designed space which reflects everything from diner style to price point, also ensuring a seamless workflow and highly efficient operations. Leading Casual Dining Restaurant The winning restaurant in this category needs to have mastered the art of casual dining, offering a relaxed, informal space to its customers – while maintaining quality when it comes to food and beverage operations, as well as setting. Leading Fine Dining Restaurant An exclusive, luxurious venue, the Leading Fine Dining Restaurant will be detailoriented to the highest of standards, offering faultless service and tantalising dishes that reflect the true essence of high-end dining. Customers can expect an above-andbeyond approach at this restaurant, with experienced, knowledgeable staff catering to diners’ needs in complete harmony with the restaurant’s style. Leading Nightlife Venue Music that gets the crowd moving, lighting and sound equipment to complement it and more – these are all factors that are key to a magnificent nightlife experience. A hot city spot, the Leading Nightlife Venue will offer exciting

entertainment that appeals to a range of partygoers and first-time guests. Leading Sports Bar Whether it is the latest in football or cricket, the Leading Sports Bar will be the perfect venue for customers to watch a game with the optimum selection of food and beverages to go along with it. This outlet will feature big screens and a comfortable, yet bustling, ambience in true spirit of the world of sport. Leading Brunch Concept The top Brunch Concept will be a winner in the brunch game, featuring a variety of food offerings and the right entertainment to go along with it – with a focus on service standards and a fulfilling extended dining experience for its target crowd. Leading Fusion Restaurant Mastering the true art of mixing different cuisines, this category is dedicated to restaurants that have managed to strike the perfect balance between foods from around the globe. The Leading Fusion Restaurant will create awe-inspiring dining experiences for guests – while staying true to the essence of each cuisine and highlighting some of its most defining characteristics. Leading Fast-Casual Restaurant/Café Maintaining consistently seamless operations while running a fast-paced F&B outlet culture can be tricky. However, the Leading Fast-Casual Restaurant/Café will excel in quick service without compromising on quality. Leading Delivery Platform A smooth, hassle-free experience is at the heart of successful delivery platform operations. Not only will the winner offer a user-friendly interface, but it will also ensure unmatched service from the moment customers sign in all the way to post-delivery assistance and complaint management. www.hotelnewsme.com


september 2019

Event preview

People Categories Leading F&B Director The Leading Hotel F&B Director award highlights the achievements of an individual who has demonstrated an exceptional ability to exceed KPIs, streamlining operational processes, developing and enhancing restaurant concepts and maintaining excellence in team leadership and management. Chef of the Year Open to head chefs and executive chefs, the Chef of the Year Award recognises an individual who has shown passion for the art of cooking, in addition to culinary flair and a strong skillset pertaining to overseeing kitchen operations efficiently while managing costs. Pastry Chef of the Year The Pastry Chef of the Year is a master of his craft, with a strong grasp of the fundamentals, as well as a flair for new techniques and sourcing quality ingredients. Their creations are the talk of the town, consistently exceeding expectations with a “wow” factor. Leading F&B Investor The Leading F&B Investor will have an eye for good business, with a strong portfolio that showcases one venture’s success after the other. Taking calculated risks in the world of F&B investment, they can see a model through to completion, while factoring in every aspect along the way.

Young F&B Leader Under 30 years old, this young pioneer has made headlines in the Middle East’s competitive F&B scene with an exciting new restaurant or catering concept, an innovative F&B tech platform or a supply chain or food service solution. F&B Heavyweight A CEO of a restaurant group with a well-known brand, or a number of ventures, under their leadership, the F&B Heavyweight will be handling a portfolio of more than ten outlets in the GCC with a pipeline of openings in the near future reflecting strength and popularity. Bartender of the Year The Bartender of the Year has a deep understanding of flavour combinations that work. They are familiar with the classics and are not afraid to experiment, all while successfully managing their time and maintaining outstanding customer service as well as teamwork skills. Best Service Team of the Year An F&B team who consistently demonstrates operational excellence and exceptional productivity along with attention to detail, the winning service team will have full control over internal communication and customer service. A team who has implemented an innovative process will receive extra merit in the selection process.

F&B Marketeer of the Year A marketeer who understands the market and can predict any obstacles or challenges – and formulate strategies and solutions to overcome them – the F&B Marketeer will have a clear vision when it comes to conceptualising, planning and implementing effective F&B campaigns. Restaurant Manager of the Year Managing a very successful restaurant brand born in the Middle East or abroad, the Restaurant Manager of the Year will be well-versed in the ins and outs of running a restaurant and boast a strong business acumen. F&B Entrepreneur(s) of the Year A visionary, the F&B Entrepreneur thinks across the board. From manpower to taking over the market, they bring new ideas to the table with their concepts, ensuring their model achieves the desired success rates and targets in no time. Food Tech Innovator of the Year This category recognises a top food tech innovator, one who is pushing boundaries and responding to societal and environmental changes. From plant-based investments and out-ofthe-box menus, to packaging solutions, the Food Tech Innovator is a creative force in the F&B landscape.

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September 2019

Roundtable

HCNME Roundtable:

F&B Strategy - from Ingredients to Innovation F&B leaders, professionals and chefs came together for Hotel & Catering News Middle East’s roundtable, held ahead of The Big F&B Forum, to discuss some of the most important topics in the industry When it comes to F&B, how can a balance be achieved between quality and speed, without compromising on one or the other? How can a smooth flow of operations be ensured, as well as optimum service for guests? Al-Barqawi: Customers in general care about service, selection and price. More often than not, one comes at the 46

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cost of the other. The Dubai customer is discerning, and while they don’t mind paying a bit more for the right offering, they still seek value for money in every experience. Drescher: While there’s a market now for everyone, I prefer quality over speed – style, elegance and quiet eating, but others

who prefer fast food will go to venues that offer that, and you’ll see a shift in diners’ behavioural patterns accordingly. Fraser-Smith: Quick delivery is what people are expecting these days, but the cost of this is that you’re losing out on overall experience. The delivery model has deflated expectations, killing www.hotelnewsme.com


september 2019

Roundtable

other factors. I would like to see focus on quality, authenticity and relevance rather than just speed.

while the latter is all about speed and price point – which is hurting the experience aspect.

Ruggiero: We’re a business hotel, so our focus is on lunch and dinner – the former needing to be served fast. We should always be ready, yet never compromise on quality as repeat guests come in every day. As for dinner, it will always be important to enjoy the experience.

Susa: Depending on where customers are coming from, they expect different things. Industry professionals often forget that we have different nationalities coming into our establishments, and we need to cater to each and every one’s rhythm.

Saadi: The industry is split into two aspects, dining and delivery. For the former, people still do come in to enjoy the experience, music and ambience,

Vande Velde: At the core of running a hospitality business is maintaining quality and speed. Dubai is a demanding market, and you need both.

In attendance • Yousef Al-Barqawi regional manager,

Deliveroo Editions – EMEA • H. Peter Drescher

vice president, Food & Beverage MEA at Accor

• Duncan Fraser-Smith vice president, TFG

Food and Beverage at The First Group • Chef Mariangela Ruggiero

executive chef at Radisson Blu Media City • Abdul Kader Saadi

managing director at Glee Hospitality

• Chef Dragan Susa chef de cuisine at Emerald Palace Kempinski Dubai • Dries Vande Velde

head of Marketing & PR at Creneau International & SWR Hospitality

• Najib Yaacoub

regional brand manager at Black Tap.

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Yaacoub: Customers in the region, and specifically in Dubai, know what they want – and they expect experience more than speed. At Black Tap, we offer the graffiti, music, fit outs and the most important thing – the good people. We always have aces in places, we don’t rush things and guests enjoy the quality service and overall experience. How can the industry keep up with the rise of different consumer preferences, including plant-based eating, while maintaining revenue streams and ensuring sustainability? Al Barqawi: It’s definitely not a trend, plant-based eating is here to stay. However, if you try to please everybody, you’ll please no one. Find your niche, those are your customers. Diners today know a lot more about food, so they feel more entitled to ask for certain requests, and that warrants a direction from restaurants which should stick to what they do best – what got them there in the first place. Drescher: Our industry is driven by trends, starting from back when it was all about gluten-free, all the way to veganism. This lifestyle is an addition to what we do, not to mention – meat production is harmful for the environment. We need to adapt to the market and these customers’ strong beliefs – as opposed to us hoteliers often trying to dictate what people like, which is wrong. Fraser-Smith: Veganism is a way of life, not a trend, and it’s not going anywhere. This isn’t the Keto or Atkins diet. That’s why restaurateurs and operators need to cater to this. Even though we’re a smokehouse, our chef has now started smoking vegetables and different foods, so we can come up with more options. We can be quite reactive, and what we need is to be pioneers. We should be educating consumers and the community and 48

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Roundtable

can’t close ourselves off to a market segment that’s continually growing. Ruggiero: From the kitchen perspective, we can’t lose our identity. In Europe, if you’d like a certain food, you would go to where it’s their speciality, but that’s not the case here. However, restaurant staff always need to explain things to guests in terms of what we can and can’t do, otherwise I would tell them: “you can have my jacket if you want it.” Saadi: Once you open a restaurant, you must have done your research beforehand – you must believe in in what you’re offering. While you can’t impose anything on the customer, you also can’t change your menu as it will mess up both the brand and operations, in addition to the revenue stream. I’m sure introducing a vegan menu in a non-vegan restaurant isn’t the way forward. Susa: We’ve spoiled customers in Dubai. In Europe, you go to certain restaurants for certain reasons. I believe that plant-based eating is more of a trend, but I do also believe that we need to monitor our suppliers for any harmful practices. If we keep adapting, the concept will eventually change – which isn’t something we would want. Vande Velde: In Dubai, we have a lot of demand to change certain dishes. The consumer is very spoiled here, yet I do believe that venues should always try to adapt to the market. However, always stay true to your brand values and pillars. Yaacoub: Veganism is on the rise, it’s a lifestyle. Vegans can also certainly enjoy at Black Tap. We have three to four recipes now which are purely vegan, even though it’s even more costly to get the buns, for example, even more so than with all-American burgers. We’re even developing a vegan crazy shake! Hotel & Catering NEWS ME

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September 2019

Products

Reducing and Managing Food Waste A report released by the Dubai Industrial Park and The Economist Intelligence Unit has revealed that annual food waste is estimated at 427kg per person in Saudi Arabia and 197kg per person in the UAE, compared with 95-115kg in Europe and North America, with hotels being the biggest source of food waste. What’s a disposer? • A food waste disposer is a modern kitchen appliance offering an easy, practical alternative for managing food waste. • It’s installed under the kitchen sink and attached to a drain. • With cold water running from the kitchen tap, the disposer can be turned on using a wall switch or sink-top switch. • Within seconds, it grinds food waste into fine particles, which are then flushed into the septic or sewage system. Simply stated, food waste disposers provide a clean, convenient and environmentally responsible method of ridding the kitchen of food scraps. At the touch of a button, food waste is dealt with hygienically and instantly – rather than leaving it in a bin to attract smells, bacteria and insects. Disposers help reduce truck and landfill methane emissions, landfill leachate, and water table contamination. Food waste can be recycled into renewable energy and fertilisers, with disposers making recycling easier by helping separate it from bottles, cans, plastic and paper. The problem with food waste is that: • Millions of tonnes of food waste are generated each year. • Decomposing food in the trash gives off odours and attracts bugs and rodents. • Decomposing food produces a methane gas that is 21 times more potent than carbon dioxide. 50

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A food waste disposer helps by: • Keeping food waste out of garbage cans, trucks and landfills. • Grinding food waste so it can be converted into renewable energy at wastewater treatment plants. InSinkErator food waste disposers have been starving landfills for over 75 Years Not only do they offer practical, contemporary convenience, but disposers

Quick Facts • Emerson directly supports the goals of the Dubai Integrated Energy Strategy 2030 to increase the sustainability and competitiveness of the economy. • Not only is Emerson the largest manufacturer of disposals, they’re also the original creators having invented garbage disposals in 1927. Since entering the market in 2010, Emerson has seen double digit growth year on year for the InSinkErator. • The UAE has some of the highest rates of accredited green buildings in the world. With the InSinkErator, Emerson has worked on many projects in the past few years, including ones in collaboration with Dubai Sustainable City and the ICCA (International Centre for Culinary Arts). • Emerson is also currently working on several projects on Dubai’s Jewel of the Creek, providing sustainable solutions to many of the hotels, restaurants, apartments and offices within the project. also provide an environmentally sound answer to the growing problem of food waste. With a disposer, it’s finely ground and sent to a wastewater treatment plant, where it can be converted into fertiliser, energy and clean water. Disposers also use minimal amounts of water and electricity. The environmental advantages of food waste disposers were documented in third party studies from around the globe. www.hotelnewsme.com


www.host.fieramilano.it/en


September 2019

Marketplace

Marketplace Beverages

For all the latest News, Visit www.hotelnewsme.com Follow us on Facebook for up-to-the-minute breaking news Read the latest edition on www.hotelnewsme.com

Bidfood What’s your most recent product launch? We recently had two great launches. Firstly, the limited edition Diamond S.Pellegrino 1 litre bottle in celebration of S.Pellegrino’s 120 years. The special edition glass bottle comes with a silver-lined 120 Year Anniversary label and diamond-shaped rivets that reflect S.Pellegrino’s timelessness, purity and complexity. The special edition bottle can be found exclusively in Burj Al Arab, Jumeirah. Secondly, and in terms of our product range, our latest product launch is the new Acqua Panna bottle design. It’s now a sleeker, more modern bottle with a minimalistic, bold visual and logo – with the same, classic taste that we all know and love. The new glass and PET bottle sizes include 1ltr, 750ml, 500ml, and 250ml.

What’s this product’s selling point? It’s the “Smoothest Taste on Earth”. Acqua Panna’s new bottle design and the campaign that comes behind it tell the story of the water’s 14-year journey through the hills of Tuscany, which is the contributing factor behind its balanced composition which gives it its popular smooth taste. The design also features the iconic Florentine fleur-de-lis, the family crest of the historic Medici family who founded the water, and Acqua Panna’s signature orange colour. What’s in the pipeline for your company and its product offerings? We have a new and exciting product range from S.Pellegrino, as well as a new coffee brand coming soon.

Chef Middle East Beverages Chef Middle East Beverages has added Fentiman’s Oriental Yuzu Tonic to its existing range of mixers currently available from the brand to sit alongside Rose Lemonade, Premium Indian Tonic Water and four other flavours all available in 125ml bottles. In the pipeline: Kombucha Tea! While it’s certainly trending now, it’s not new and has been around since 220BC tracing its roots back to China and known for its health benefits. It’s expected to launch in Q4 with a range of exciting flavours just in time for the season kicking off locally.

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September 2019

Marketplace

Agthia Group Capri-Sun The popular fruit juice drink in its standup pouch has been available in stores in Germany since 1969. Capri-Sun is sold in over 100 countries across the globe. As verdant fruits are often too acidic, especially for children, only sun-ripened fruit from selected varieties is used to produce CapriSun. The manufacturing facility is certified by LRQA for FSSC 22000, which is fully recognised by the GFSI (Global Food Safety Initiative), and also maintains standards such as ISO 9001, ISO 14001 and OHSAS 18001. The latest addition to the Capri-Sun family is the Fruit Crush range. Al Ain Fresh Al Ain Fresh juice products, already available in the HoReCa sector, are now also available in the retail sector. Produced using High Pressure Pasteurisation (HPP) Processing, Al Ain Fresh extracts the juice in such a way that absolutely nothing is lost in the process, neither the nutrients, nor the taste. HPP is a natural, environmentallyfriendly, cold-pressing process where freshly squeezed juice (sealed in a waterresistant flexible packaging) is exposed to extremely high pressure. This process gets rid of all bacteria and seals the juice in a way that locks in all the ingredients, freshness and nutrients, unlike the Ultra High-Temperature (UHT) treatment which can destroy the natural nutrients and vitamins of the fruit, while affecting taste as well. Fresh Dairy Yoplait is the world’s second largest fresh dairy producer, with a strong presence in the international markets. It’s currently active in approximately 50 countries with over 2,500 products. agthia.com Hotel & Catering NEWS ME

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September 2019

Supplier watch

Mirroring Trends:

Mirodec

Michael Khoury, general manager of Mirodec Gulf, discusses the company’s projects with hospitality designers for 5-star hotels, government institutions and more

Projects After completing several high-end projects in the UAE including Emirates Palace in Abu Dhabi, the Dubai Metro, Cleveland Clinics Abu Dhabi and the Presidential Palace Abu Dhabi (Qasr Al Watan), Mirodec has seen a sharp rise in demand for its bespoke decorative glass products in private residences as well as retail and restaurants. Recently, in the hospitality industry, the company has completed projects such as Marea in DIFC, Maine Oyster Bar in JBR, Akira Back at the recently opened W Dubai - The Palm, Bab Al Yam and Al Mahara at Burj al Arab. No cookie-cutter designs Each restaurant has to be tailored completely from scratch, in line with the vision of the designer. However, there have been some defining trends that Mirodec has seen throughout the year. One of the main ones has been the increase in the decorative metal mesh laminated inside of glass, which results in a sophisticated and unique end-product. The company has also seen a rise in requests for cast glass, a technique which has been gaining popularity in seafood restaurants to cleverly reflect a “wave effect”, designed to give a realistic immersive “wet look”. Retro continues to be a theme this year, with commissions for patterned or Reeded glass, which provide the nostalgic look. Decorative mirrors, which create a three-dimensional feel, were also big this year. Mirrors can be styled to enhance the theme of the room or brighten dark corners. Mirodec offers embellished walls with a range of decorative mirrors from 54

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geometric patterns, to engraved and V-grooved styles. Mirrors or glass? Mirrors and glass are essential for restaurants and how they ’re used can instantly transform the look and feel. Mirrors can provide depth, a designer’s best friend, for someone trying to create the illusion of more space in smaller venues. Glass is one of the most versatile materials, which can be shaped as per

the designer’s intent and the restaurant’s theme. Using Marea, the 2-star Michelin restaurant which opened earlier this year, as an example, Mirodec worked with the designer to develop a striking look. Also, in Al Mahara restaurant in Burj Al Arab, the strategic placement of different mirrors assembled alongside one another resulted in a unique outcome and special vibe throughout the interiors. Mirodec’s mission lies in assisting interior designers and bringing their ideas to life. mirodec.com www.hotelnewsme.com


17 - 19 September 2019 Dubai World Trade Centre

THE SHAPE OF THINGS TO COME.

Where the Middle East’s hospitality community meets to shape the future of hospitality. Meet the most important brands from the hospitality and design communities. Part of

Register to attend for free:

www.thehotelshow.com/RegisterforFREE


September 2019

Talent

The Right People

Getting your recruitment strategy right is arguably one of the most important, and often testing, aspects of the hospitality and service industries. Here, CatererGlobal.com Manager Jeremy Vercoe explains how professionals can enhance the process, from the perspective of both the company and prospective recruits Keep it agile When it comes to hiring the best recruits, speed and flexibility are of the essence. In such a fast-paced industry, it can only be expected that potential employees are also moving rapidly. To make sure you don’t lose someone you’ve shortlisted to another role, it’s important to keep in constant contact with quality candidates, to let them know that they’re still being considered for a role within your company. Ideally, try and make the recruitment process as short and streamlined as 56

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possible. Not only does it save the company extensive time and money on lengthy proceedings, it also sets a standard of efficiency for your prospective new employee, who will then mirror this when entering the business. Employers who have drawn-out or difficult hiring processes with large gaps of time between each stage often lose quality candidates to more agile competitors, with CatererGlobal research indicating that an applicant’s ideal process involves no more than two interviews, in quick succession.

If you’re looking to hire someone who’s currently employed, be mindful of the fluid working hours which are synonymous with the industry. If they work evening shifts at a restaurant, don’t ask them to come in for an interview at 6pm; your future employee will work flexibly around the business’ requirements once hired, so it’s only fair to demonstrate the same respect to them during the interview phase. It also shows a level of mutual respect which your candidates will admire and appreciate. www.hotelnewsme.com


september 2019

Talent

suitable position. If they ’re a good candidate, but just not the right one for that job at that current moment, they ’ll appreciate the upfront honestly and be more likely to be open to future opportunities which they may be better suited to at a later date. No one likes to be strung along, and they’ll be less likely to engage with you down the line if they feel disrespected after their first round of interactions with you.

It’s quite simple to get an influx of applicants, but attracting the best talent and identifying them from the pack is an art form in itself. Communication is key Silence can be alienating in any situation, but can really drag out when you’re a candidate eagerly awaiting news from a potential employer, particularly following an in-person interview or promise of an offer letter. If you’ve found someone you’re eager to hire or invite back for a second interview, it’s best to leave only short amounts of time between interactions. Doing so helps to avoid them believing the lead has gone cold and looking

elsewhere, which in turn means you’re less likely to miss out on your preferred candidate. It’s also a nice touch to let them know that you’re a conscientious employer and keep them engaged, while also signalling that you’re open to receiving any questions they may have. It’s really important to be transparent with information: if they ’re not the best fit for the role, then it’s best-practice to let them know, so that they can continue looking for a

Attract the right talent So, what about attracting the right candidate in the first place? This can often be the most difficult and tiring part of the process. It’s quite simple to get an influx of applicants, but attracting the best talent and identifying them from the pack is an art form in itself. To attract them, you can’t just advertise a high salary – the most driven candidates won’t be motivated by money alone – rather, it’s important to highlight your company’s extensive value proposition. This could include both personal and professional development opportunities, training opportunities, work-life balance flexibilities and company culture highlights. When it comes to shortlisting applicants, there are a plethora of methods for sorting through potential applicants, but perhaps none as convenient or effective as specialised tools which are designed exclusively for your industry. Targeted portals allow a more refined approach, which enables you to reach potential applicants, not only locally, but also regionally and internationally, without becoming inundated with irrelevant applications, by offering functions which identify and feature potential candidates who are highly-skilled and are well-suited to an advertised position. Again, this works both ways in that it enhances the refinement process for shortlisting candidates, while simultaneously supporting qualified jobseekers in identifying relevant opportunities and helping your business stand out among the clutter of general jobposting platforms. Hotel & Catering NEWS ME

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September 2019

F&B Far and near

Fall in Love with Food and Drink Again this Fall Three experts from Chef Middle East tell us about the flavours and aromas of autumn, bringing you three season-inspired menu items

Chef Georges Chihane

Culinary Development Manager at Chef Middle East What’s your autumn creation? For this dish, I used fall-inspired ingredients such as root veggies, seasonal fruits, nature-faded pale colours, and with the hunting season in mind I used a goose’s three parts: breast, leg and liver, with three different cooking techniques. The dish is served with modern pumpkin gnocchi, a red plum goose liver mousse and roast-infused stock. What ingredients did you use? Working at Chef Middle East, I have the luxury of having access to a large basket of best-in-class brands that fit this season, starting with Upignac whole goose and parts, goose liver, pumpkin and red plum purees from Les vergers Boiron, to texturisers from Sosa Ingredients. Why did you select these ingredients? Goose is a fancy seasonal product for autumn, approaching Christmas and New Year. Les vergers Boiron purees are the most authentic and flavourful,

very versatile products that can be used anywhere when using fruits and vegetables, and Sosa Ingredients for the ease of use and texture they bring to any dish. What technique did you use, and do you have tips on how to enhance your recipe? The goose legs were “confit” for four hours in infused clarified butter, the breast was cooked sous vide for 90 minutes and the liver was prepared the traditional way. As for the pumpkin gnocchi, it’s cooked with Sosa Promochi Kuzu, contain no eggs, flour or potato and the broth was created by roasting the goose bones infused with gingerbread spices. The plum and liver mousse were prepared with Sosa Proespuma Hot as a texturiser. What makes this such a great dish? It’s a very seasonal dish, using a full range of techniques and key ingredients and it simply tastes great. Ideal for a fine dining menu, it’s full of rich flavours and textures.

Aiming to raise the “food” bar, Chef Middle East will host a one-of-a-kind event for F&B professionals, which revolves around an autumn theme, across four major cities starting in Dubai on October 14, then in Abu Dhabi on October 16, Muscat on October 21 and Doha on October 23. Join to discover the latest kitchen solutions, meet an exciting line-up of industry professionals, see celebrity chefs in action and find out more about some of the best products available on the market at the Taste of Autumn event. www.chefmiddleeast.com

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september 2019

F&B Far and Near

Chef Vincent Cockenpot

Pastry Chef & Trainer at Chef Middle East Why did you select these ingredients? The decision to use the products from Valrhona, Sosa Ingredients and Les vergers Boiron was simple as they ’re quite innovative and sourced by the best producers to ensure a top-quality result for any satisfying customer experience. These brands also provide great levels of support to chefs who need it.

What’s your autumn dessert inspiration? For my fall-inspired dessert, I decided to make a cocoa crumble to represent the earth, topped with a crumble coated with Opalys chocolate that represents the rock inspired from my time living in Fontainebleau, France. I then created an egg-free ginger cream with a touch of liquorice pear sorbet to refresh the mouth. To finish, I added some chocolate garnish with a mushroom render as if you’re walking through a forest.

What makes this such a great dessert? Living in Dubai, this dish brings me back to those autumn days in the north of France. This dessert inherits popular qualities as it uses premium ingredients, it’s free of artificial colour, the sugar is well-balanced as are the textures – it’s crunchy, creamy, and there’s a pear sorbet quenelle to refresh the palate and reduce the sweetness of the dessert.

What ingredients did you use? As Chef Georges mentioned, the beauty of working at Chef Middle East is that we have access to some of the world’s best ingredients. For my autumn dessert basket, I went with Opalys and cocoa powder from Valrhona, pear puree from Les vergers Boiron, Pro for the sorbet 5G, glucose powder, gelcrem cold, vegetal gelling, fish gelatin and pectin NH from Sosa Ingredients.

Tauland Hyka

Mixologist & Trainer at Chef Middle East What beverage did you decide to create? When I think of autumn, I think of golden leaves, hay piled up, the burning of the hay on the fields, the after-summer fruits and vegetables. I wanted to bring to life a drink that could have been a pumpkin or an apple pie, with hint of the autumn smoke and earthy notes. What ingredients did you use? There’s no shortage of amazing food ingredients, nor is there any of beverage ingredients as well at Chef Middle East. I decided to use James White Organic Apple Juice, pumpkin and lemon purees from Les vergers Boiron, Apple & Caramel Syrup from 1705 Cherry Rocher, Lemon-Mint-Orange Blossom Iced Tea from Nai, and Smoke Powder and Potato Whip from Sosa Ingredients. Why did you select these ingredients? All these ingredients remind me of autumn, and combining them comes down

to the taste of the final drink, which leads us to the quality and consistency you can get when using organic. What makes this such a great beverage? When making a mixed beverage, not only is it important to deliver a message to guests, but also fabulous, unique taste.

With the “Autumn Reminder” mocktail, you taste the freshness of the apple and deliciousness of the pumpkin, and aromas that bring you straight to those beautiful autumn afternoons. For me, this would be one of the most popular drinks on the menu. It’s creative, tastefully impactful and very Instagram-friendly. Hotel & Catering NEWS ME

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September 2019

Opinion

Seeking Potential

M D Warrier, managing director at Bin Eid Executive Search, gives us an in-depth look into recruitment challenges and the best ways to overcome them What do you think of employment potential in the hotel and hospitality sectors in the current market, particularly in the GCC region? The hotel and hospitality segments are growing at a fast pace and the potential for employment generation is enormous. This is visible in UAE, other GCC countries, Asia and Africa. Dubai itself will reach over 132,000 for its room inventory by the end of 2019. In Saudi Arabia, 41,000 rooms are under construction. In Oman, another 4,000 rooms. Egypt will also add another 4,000 eventually. Plus, another 54,000 rooms are under construction in Dubai alone. So, employment generation, talent acquisition and the challenges they bring in the hospitality segments need to be looked at closely. How can the hospitality sector overcome any occasional challenges? The situation always bounces back to normal over a period of time. The hospitality industry is very dynamic, and it propels growth in the overall economy. How can we attract talent to the hotel industry? If we take stock of the last 30 years, we’ll see that the number of hotel and hospitality entities has grown exponentially beyond normal standards. The job opportunities and socio-economic transformation it has brought is exemplary – on all levels. All roles, from kitchen helpers to CEOs, whether unskilled, semi-skilled, skilled, supervisory, middle management, senior management or leadership, can be accommodated in this industry. The landscape for hospitality jobs is changing rapidly due to the technological, digital and AI revolution, in addition to client expectations and socio-economic 60

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and political challenges. Hospitality jobs are outnumbering other sectors day by day, and the transition to a knowledgebased work environment is very evident. Equipping the workforce with the required skillset is a formidable task in view of the fast-paced overall changes taking place in this industry. How can hotels and F&B outlets address human capital challenges? Relevant research and innovative methods need to be identified to utilise human resources to optimum level. An increase in efficiency and effectiveness are of prime importance. The hospitality industry is undisputedly a people’s business and hence very delicate and demanding as culturally and emotionally diverse individuals are involved as stakeholders – be it customers,

employees, suppliers or any other party in this process. In turbulent times, efficiency, productivity, cost effectiveness and optimum utilisation of resources is the solution, along with a combination of jobs /multi-tasking wherever possible. Up-skilling employees in all aspects of hospitality operations can address issues, along with technological transformation in required areas. The UAE is set to add 54,000 hotel rooms of various categories ahead of Expo 2020. Dubai is the fourth most visited city in the world, expecting close to 25 million visitors next year, which speaks volumes of the growth and potential of the hospitality industry. www.hotelnewsme.com


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H.E. Mariam Bint Mohammed Al Mheiri Minister of State for Food Security, UAE

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Director General Emirates Standardiza on & Metrology Authority, UAE

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September 2019

Review

Cinq Mondes Spa Fascinated by traditional medicine and cosmetics, Nathalie and Jean-Louis Poiroux journeyed around the world in search of the best beauty rituals. Their discoveries provided the founding principles for the creation of Cinq Mondes, the French spa located in Emerald Palace Kempinski Dubai. Through its treatments and products, Cinq Mondes is all about the deep regeneration of the body and mind to recreate a state of perfect balance – even inside skin cells – for naturally happy, well everything. Tucked away within the luxurious Palace, the spacious spa is an urban sanctuary of peace and wellbeing. An enchanting décor with multiple alcoves sets the stage for a warmly intimate and bright atmosphere. Cinq Mondes is 3,000 square metres of pure bliss, and comprises 23 treatment rooms, including two double suites, four Cinq Mondes traditional deep soaking Japanese wooden bathtubs – two of which are double facing – and seven scrub rooms. The Spa also has two hammams (separate for women and men) boasting Arabianinspired décor. For the Balinese massage, we were immersed in a world of tranquillity with this ancient experience. The sensorial escape includes gentle Thai stretching and traditional smoothing movements, in addition to a tropical nuts melting body balm to provide the ultimate treat for the skin. Not to be missed are the spa facilities,

which include a warm room, a sauna for the more daring and a tropical shower experience with everything from drizzles and mists to full-on rain, complete with mood lights and bird sound effects. The relaxation room is cosy, with cream curtains draped over every bed for privacy and you’re bound

to find everything you need in there, from micellar water to quality hair dryers and moisturiser – not to mention some Salvatore Ferragamo treats. Cinq Mondes is, to put it simply, an ode to luxury, set within the world of opulence that is Emerald Palace Kempinski Dubai.

BIN EID EXECUTIVE SEARCH (Specialised in 5* Hotel Sector) Since 1995

Celebrating 23 years in Executive Search (Hotels & other Hospitality segment) We thank our Clients, Candidates, well-wishers who directly and indirectly helped us in our wonderful & blissful journey. We also thank the Almighty, Bin Eid team members, ex-employees, associates and numerous unseen souls who supported us to navigate in our 23 years of spectacular journey. Thank you for the trust and confidence placed on us.

Our Services: • Salary & Compensation Survey • Pre-opening recruitment from 20 countries • Executive Search & Head Hunting

Currently Hiring: • General Manager • Director of Sales & Marketing • Sales Manager / Executive • Director of Engineering • Front Office Manager

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HR & Training Manager Hotel Manager Director Finance Executive Chef F&B Director

PO Box 5455 Sharjah, United Arab Emirates Email: mdwarrier@bineid.com Tel: +971 6 5686144 Website: www.bineid.com

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Hotel & Catering News ME - September 2019  

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