HOTEL & CATERING NEWS MIDDLE EAST NOVEMBER 2022 ISSUE

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NOVEMBER 2022 | HOTELNEWSME.COM

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IN THIS ISSUE

52 LEADERS IN F&B AWARDS 2022

Hotel & Catering News Middle East’s much anticipated Leaders in Food & Beverage Awards 2022 took place at Sofitel Dubai The Palm, on the 21st of October 2022

20 WHO’S COOKING 5 GOLDEN RULES my Sicilian nonna taught me in the kitchen 21 THIS MONTH'S MUST-TRY BE A TOURIST IN YOUR OWN CITY at the New Mövenpick Jumeirah Village Triangle 22 EXCEPTIONAL GASTRONOMY A THREE-DAY CELEBRATION OF GASTRONOMY AT THE PALACE EMIRATES PALACE HOSTS AWARDWINNING GUEST CHEFS AT TALEA AND MARTABAAN 26 MOVERS AND SHAKERS THE RISE OF COYA An expansion story from a regional favourite 30 F&B LEADERS CONFERENCE 2022 F&B AND BEYOND The morning of the 21st of October 2022 was a fruitful one, as founders, CEOs, F&B executives, hotel general managers, and other F&B professionals gathered to listen, learn, and network at the annual F&B Leaders Conference 2022

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40 GULFHOST MEET THE GULFHOST EXHIBITORS In addition to having a wide range of advanced hospitality equipment and food service products will be showcased in this year’s GulfHost allowing visitors to engage with industry leaders 86 F&B FOCUS A CLOSE-UP OF ABU DHABI’S HOSPITALITY SCENE Like every industry, it’s no secret that the UAE’s hospitality sector has faced numerous challenges over the last few years 88 POINT OF VIEW LESSONS FROM START-UPS AND START-UP CULTURE Over the past 10 years, I have been involved in several start-ups 90 TECH & INNOVATION WHY FIVE-STAR GUEST EXPERIENCES START WITH PAYMENTS Insights from leading hospitality brands on delivering high quality service through personalised, flexible payments technology


Ministero degli AffariAffairs Esteri Ministry of Foreign eand della Cooperazione Internazionale International Cooperation


Hotel&Catering NEWS Middle East EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Seymone L Moodley seymone@bncpublishing.net CEO Wissam Younane wissam@bncpublishing.net

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DIRECTOR Rabih Najm rabih@bncpublishing.net CREATIVE LEAD Odette Kahwagi design@bncpublishing.net DESIGNER Christian Harb MARKETING EXECUTIVE Aaron Joshua Sinamban aj@bncpublishing.net

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HCNME EDITOR’S NOTE

The feeling is mutual

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uring the months leading up to the Leaders in F&B Awards 2022, we received a staggering number of nominations. Among them were long time favourites and new F&B concepts that opened this year. Comprehending how much value the industry places on these events is a big responsibility and is one that I don’t take lightly; because the feeling is mutual. We can’t bring these events to life without the support and participation of all the people that keep this sector alive. I can’t seem to say Thank You enough! Recognising what you mean to this industry and all you do brings us at HCNME great joy. Watching your excitement and seeing some of you shed tears allows us to believe that we are doing something worthwhile. We will continue to honour and acknowledge the many divisions that work tirelessly to complete the hospitality experience in the region. To all the winners and highly commended awardees, congratulations again.

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I am excited to see what you do next and tell your stories when we meet again at the next F&B event. The F&B Leaders Conference 2022 was an event full of impressive networking opportunities and a chance to hear from industry heavyweights shaping the F&B scene. It was also a forum to ask some of the biggest CEOs, MDs, and GMs the burning questions you’ve always had about the ins and outs of the hospitality industry. With over 150 F&B professionals in the room, it was a rare occasion for all of us in the industry to pause for a minute, sit down, and talk. I am so grateful for the incredible support I received from all the moderators and panellists that gave us their valuable time and expertise, those that didn’t need any convincing and were ready to come and engage with a room full of like-minded professionals. If you missed this session, worry not as we have complied a recap of the key insights from each discussion, along with some pictures, and a list of the all the speakers. In this issue, we also introduce all the winners from the Leaders in F&B Awards 2022, and gear up for GulfHost 2022, with a list of must-meet exhibitors that will be on display this month. We hear all about Nescafe’s 2030 sustainability plan, chat with a host of chefs about menu collaborations, and much more.

SEYMONE L MOODLEY EDITOR-IN-CHIEF seymone@bncpublishing.net Seymone Leigh Moodley seymonemoodley





HCNME OPENINGS & LAUNCHES

Radisson Hotel Group opens its first resort in Dubai, Radisson Beach Resort Palm Jumeirah Radisson Beach Resort Palm Jumeirah is located along the contemporary beachfront promenade at The Palm’s West Beach on the shores of Palm Jumeirah. The property provides leisure travellers with easy access to the city’s lifestyle and entertainment destinations, including Nakheel Mall, Mall of the Emirates, and Emirates Golf Club. Featuring 315 king and 74 twin rooms, the property has been designed with floor-to-ceiling windows and balconies granting guests magnificent ocean views over the Arabian Gulf, the spectacular Dubai Marina skyline and harbour, as well as the iconic Ain Dubai, the world’s biggest and tallest Ferris wheel, located on Bluewaters Island. As one of the Group’s first resorts in the UAE, Radisson Beach Resort

Palm Jumeirah will offer access to an exclusive hotel beach with sun loungers, sunbeds with umbrellas, and F&B service. The property boasts multiple swimming pools, including a podium swimming pool on the first floor, a rooftop swimming pool on the 13th floor, and a children’s pool with a Kids Club for the little ones. The infinity rooftop pool is

A South African Adventure awaits at One&Only Cape Town

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surrounded with soft white and white-washed wood lounge furniture and sunbeds with flowing white curtains to relax and escape the sun while enjoying the magnificent views. Located on the 13th floor, the spa includes six treatment rooms, including a couple’s room and a Moroccan Bath for spa and beauty treatments, massages, and packages.

For GCC travellers looking to discover the beauty of South Africa and bask in its splendid sunshine, One&Only Cape Town is a serene enclave just off Cape Town’s vibrant V&A Waterfront. The resort has recently completed an extensive reimagination, introducing a new design that honours the destination’s ocean, land, and heritage. This nautical escape offers panoramic views across the Waterfront and the famous Table Mountain, and offers a chic urban break, with all the wonders of South Africa available on the doorstep. Located on its very own island, One&Only Spa offers an unparalleled spa retreat set in an oasis of serenity surrounded by water and lush vegetation. Embracing local African influencers with cutting-edge products, One&Only Spa has created a carefully considered environment for total wellbeing offering tailored holistic experiences ranging from pure relaxation to signature wellness journeys, soothing therapies, and calming rituals.


OPENINGS & LAUNCHES

Be dazzled at Neo Rooftop Bar newly opened at Movenpick Resort Al Marjan Island Neo Rooftop Bar will be the first of its kind in Ras Al Khaimah. The emirate’s first 360° rooftop bar will be the coolest place to be when the sun sets! This chic rooftop bar will captivate guests with the most breath-taking 360° views of the city that twinkles above as the ocean glistens below. Delicious light nibbles and Mediterranean fusion tapas will hit the spot, while the selection of curated drinks and mocktails, quality bubbles, hops and expansive beverage menu will ensure guests are wonderfully refreshed as they bask in the upbeat yet chilled vibe, with laid back lounge tunes and a DJ playing every Friday and Saturday.

An elegant evening awaits, whether guests are looking to enjoy refined post-work drinks, a night with friends, or perfect moments with

someone special. The spectacular roof top bar also boasts an impressive shisha selection of blends and flavours served every evening.

Celebrity Chef Akira Back launches Dubaiexclusive pop-up in Jumeirah Emirates Towers Diners can enjoy the finest dishes from renowned Chef Akira Back’s worldwide restaurants, at Dasha, an exclusive pop-up restaurant and bar. Guests can sit back and enjoy the best views of Dubai from the 50th and 51st floors of the world-famous Jumeirah Emirates Towers hotel. Dasha – The Dubai Chapter, offers diners the chance to try a mix of new dishes and cocktails, as well as some hand-selected favourites from the menus of Back’s 24 concepts and restaurants around the globe – from Las Vegas to Seoul. The venue boasts incredible views of the World Islands and Dubai coastline making it the perfect setting for a truly exclusive and never-to-forget memorable experience. The

Jumeirah Emirates Towers, by Dubai Holding, are an iconic presence in the Dubai skyline, and a must-visit destination for tourists and residents alike. Dasha – The Dubai Chapter is being brought to life in partnership with Gates Hospitality, the renowned operators of folly, Reform Social & Grill, Publique and Bistro Des Arts. “We are delighted to have the opportunity to collaborate with one of the best global chefs in the industry,” says Naim Maadad, Founder of Gates Hospitality. “Pop ups are all about bringing fresh, new and exciting experiences to the market and in a vibrant city like Dubai, we as operators need to react and learn to the ever-changing market trends and consumer reactions.”


HCNME NEWS & APPOINTMENTS EIRA WATER APPOINTS MULTI-AWARD WINNING CHEF REIF OTHMAN AS ‘EIRA WATER GLOBAL BRAND AMBASSADOR’ Premium Norwegian water brand, EIRA continues an impressive year with the appointment of internationally acclaimed chef, Reif Othman as Global Brand Ambassador. As prominent players in the luxury food and beverage industry, this partnership represents the perfect pairing of two pioneering brands with a shared commitment towards improved quality and innovation. Commenting on the announcement, EIRA International Marketing Director Jad Asaad said, “It is an honour to partner with someone as talented as Reif Othman. Reif has transformed the dining scene in the region with his innovative culinary

creations, an approach that strongly resonates with the aspirations of the EIRA Water brand. Reif is one of the most celebrated chefs from around the world and we couldn’t be more excited to have him represent EIRA Water on a global stage.” “Together we have big plans for the next 12 months and beyond, including launching new product ranges, expansion into emerging markets, and new partnerships. 2022 will also mark our first year as the official global partner of the MICHELIN Guide and we are proud to be their water of choice at the upcoming Abu Dhabi unveiling in November.”

FADEEL WEHBE TAKES POSITION AS NEW GENERAL MANAGER WITH MARRIOTT INTERNATIONAL Marriott International is pleased to announce that Fadeel Wehbe has been newly appointed as the Multi-Property General Manager at Le Meridien Dubai Hotel & Conference Centre and Le Meridien Fairway. Fadeel who holds a degree majoring in Hotel and Restaurant Management from the University of Denver, Colorado, USA has been assigned to both properties starting from August 15th. With a career journey that goes beyond 30 years, he has extensive experience and vast knowledge in the field of hospitality. Fadeel will be in charge of the 44,000 square foot Le Meridien Dubai Hotel & Conference Centre which is home to 18 F&B outlets including the famous Warehouse, The

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Dubliner’s, Yalumba, Kiku, Bounty Beets, Casa Mia and more. In his previous role, Fadeel was the General Manager of Ritz-Carlton Hotel and Residences, DIFC, Dubai, UAEwhere he oversaw 341 guest rooms along with 130 branded residences. Under his strong and committed leadership, the property won “Middle East’s Leading Luxury Business Hotel 2020” award by the World Travels Awards in 2020. Tolga S Lacin, Area General Manager said, “We heartily congratulate Fadeel upon his promotion, we are overjoyed and proud to welcome him into our family. We extend to him all the very best wishes as he gets ready to take Marriott International to new heights.”


NEWS & APPOINTMENTS

A TASTE OF THE WORLD: KITCH-IN EXPANDS ITS PORTFOLIO TO INCLUDE TEN NEW INTERNATIONAL THEMED BRANDS Kitch-In, an innovative food provider headquartered in Dubai, is set to expand its portfolio with the launch of ten new brands. Driving innovation and sustainability through manufacturing its own food, Kitch-In boasts a vast and diverse portfolio of the region’s favourite brands. In partnership with global hospitality leader Accor Group and restaurant experts, Bulldozer Group, Kitch-In’s outstanding chefs and culinary creators operate from six state-of-the-art cloud kitchens, delivering high-end nosh on behalf of over 20 operating brands. Martin Venter, Chief Operating Officer at Kitch-In said: “Our latest portfolio expansion signifies the growing diversity of customer tastes across the region. To meet the growing demand for delicious fresh and convenient cuisine from around the world, Kitch-In aspires to offer customers access to an everexpanding variety of traditional and modern dishes at prices they can afford.” Kitch-In’s cuisine is created by award-winning chefs using the best locally sourced fresh ingredients. The plethora of cuisines suit all tastes and budgets, from the warming spices of India through to the aromatic scents of freshly baked treats, Kitch-In’s expanding portfolio has something for all tastebuds. Brands include The Burger Load, Sweet Tooth tasty desserts, Green Bar for the health conscious, Hey Bowls poke bowls, Shh! Sushi offering Japanese delights, The Asian Box, Call it Levant, Greek Street and the deliciously fragrant Slice of India to name a few.

SOFITEL DUBAI THE PALM EXPANDS ITS LEADERSHIP TEAM TO ELEVATE GUEST EXPERIENCE Sofitel Dubai The Palm has bolstered its leadership team with new appointments in the Housekeeping, Concierge, and Spa divisions recently. Laura Grosbois and Stephen Simiyu have joined as the new Director of Spa and Chief Concierge respectively. Besides the two, Nelly R. Castaneda has been appointed as the Director of Housekeeping at the resort. Grosbois is a trained Podiatrist and has a Bachelor’s Degree in the profession from France. She has worked in the luxury spa industry for more than seven years in the UAE. Her experience and strong business acumen with a keen eye for guest experience will ensure that Sofitel Spa with L’Occitane will continue to position itself among the top spas in Dubai. Simiyu has been an active member of the Dubai Concierge Group affiliated to Les Clefs

D’or UAE since 2015, and the winner of First-Class Customer Care Concierge in 2014 by The Department of Economy and Tourism formerly Dubai Tourism and Commerce Marketing. Simiyu’s focus and strong desire to create unique customer experiences through

his vast local knowledge will continue to position the hotel as a leader in guest satisfaction. Castaneda has been working in the hospitality sector in the UAE since August 2004. Prior to that, she worked in Jordan and her native country – Guatemala.

HOTELNEWSME.COM | NOVEMBER 2022

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escape with us for reserva tion 600 53 2220

Movenpick Jumeirah Village Triangle is ready to welcome you! Enjoy a comfortable stay in one of our stylish rooms and suites along with our state-of-the-art wellness facilities, recreation center and elegant dining venues. Whether for business or leisure, this 5-star hotel has the perfect base for your getaway in Dubai. For booking, Kindly contact: 600 53 2220 | +971 4 561 4444 | movenpick.jvt.res@accor.com

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Welcome to Novotel Jumeirah Village Triangle Delight in and Take away memories of unbeatable fun with family and friends. Enjoy comfortable space in our stylish rooms and suites at Novotel Jumeirah Village Triangle. Whether for business or leisure, this hotel has the perfect base for your gateway in Dubai.

VISUAL

Live in your own special world at Novotel_

Entertain your palate at Novotel_

Enjoy contemporary comfort and space in our stylish rooms from Superior & Deluxe Rooms (30 - 45 sqm) to Deluxe & Premium Suites (60- 90 sqm) designed for modern convenience. Marvel at Dubai’s city lights by the balcony and wake up refreshed ready to face a new day.

Fresh and interesting food options are available from breakfast to dinner at Thyme, which offers all-day dining. Novo Lounge brings you delicious treats, a variety of hot drinks and a great urban space to catch up with friends or colleagues.

VISUAL

Family_ Family is our priority in Novotel. Stay with the whole family and kids under 16 will stay and dine free. Cherish quality time even more by availing of a second room up to 50% off*. Make more memories here.


HCNME WHO’S COOKING

5 GOLDEN RULES

MY SICILIAN NONNA TAUGHT ME IN THE KITCHEN

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BY CHEF VANESSA BAYMA, FOUNDER OF CHEF BAYMA CONSULTANCY

or most people, food is a comforting blanket that envelopes everything in delicate warmth. Having a Sicilian nonna meant that I was lucky enough to be raised with a culture of home cooking. The aromas of home-cooked Italian food permeates every corner of our house making it feel like a home. It is no secret that Italians are very particular when it comes to cooking and would never dare to change its essence - that would be blasphemous! They go way beyond just following a step-by-step recipe and my Sicilian nonna was no different. With authenticity at its roots, my nonna seemed to have a set of unwritten ‘Golden Rules’ that helped recreate the same nostalgic flavours each time. Filled with rich traditions, her rule book made her dishes iconic in my eyes, starting from childhood and up until today. With a recipe for every occasion and season, my nonna spent countless hours choosing the right ingredients for an authentic meal under my watchful eye allowing me to master the art of cooking. Although I am currently a professionally trained chef who experiments with sophisticated yet intricate flavours and ingredients, I always follow nonna’s ‘Golden Rule’s as guide for my culinary philosophy.

1. Skip the olive oil when boiling pasta

It’s common practice to add a little olive oil to boiling water to prevent the pasta from sticking. However, since oil and water do not mix, the oil only forms a layer over the water which does not have any effect. In fact, while draining the water, the oil latches to the pasta making it harder for the pasta sauce to mix with the pasta effectively, doing more harm than good. As we all know, the pasta sauce is the highlight of eating a pasta dish.

2. In broth we trust

Ever wondered why your nonna’s stews or gravies are so flavourful? It’s because they always used fresh chicken and beef broth for their cooking instead of store-bought cubes! Unlike the newer generation who believe in crumbling stock cubes, our went the extra mile to freeze their leftover stock and deglaze it in the pot. Despite being frozen, the stock is packed with nutritional value, stacks of flavour and best of all it’s cost effective.

3. Never cook your fresh herbs

Knowing how to use fresh herbs is essential to cooking and is a fool proof way to elevate your dish to the next level. The biggest rule while handling fresh herbs is to NEVER add your fresh produce to a bubbling pot as it lose its deli20

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cate flavour and texture. Instead, add them at the end before serving your dish. Of course, if your recipe calls for herbs like dry bay leaves, coriander, mint, fresh stalks of thyme or parsley to be added to a marinade or a flavourful sauce, that is the only exception.

4. Good food comes with fresh and locally sourced ingredients

As a part of the Mediterranean region, Sicilian cooking is based on minimally processed staple ingredients such as herbs and spices. Using locally sourced produce is always beneficial as it has a shorter time between harvest and your table, meaning it retains its freshness. In addition, fruits and vegetables are said to hold their nutrients up to 24 hours after harvest. This mean the sooner they are consumed, the more nutritional value they provide you. Using local produce also helps build the economy of the region you are living in and reduces your carbon footprint.

5. More is more

You will rarely ever feel hungry when your grandmother is around because she always has something cooked up before you ever reach that stage. My nonna would always suggest cooking extra food so that people won’t feel shy about taking a second serving (or even a third). Cooking a big roast only means that the leftovers can be used for sandwiches, pasta and more. An unspoken and vital ‘Golden Rule’ would be to always listen to your nonna . If you have been lucky enough to grow up with the lady boss in the kitchen, listen carefully to everything she says and pass on the wisdom to the generations to come.


THIS MONTH'S MUST-TRY

BE A TOURIST IN YOUR OWN CITY AT THE NEW

MÖVENPICK JUMEIRAH VILLAGE TRIANGLE

The ideal family friendly destination awaits as Mövenpick JVT gives you the opportunity to escape the ordinary. Tailored for the whole family, this five-star hotel is the pinnacle of luxury and convenience combined.

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ubai, UAE (August 2022): Revamp and elevate your hotel experience at Mövenpick JVT. Situated in the picturesque surroundings of Jumeirah Village Triangle, this five-star hotel has opulence, convenience, and excitement in abundance. Whether you’re looking for fantastic dining options, child- friendly activities, a place to host those all-important meetings, or a quiet area to work or study, Mövenpick JVT has it all. Beautifully adorned with marble flooring and exquisite wooden fixtures, you will be blown away by the magnificent architecture. Boasting stylish rooms and suites, all with uninterrupted views of the Dubai city skyline, the

rooms give you the sufficient space to work or relaxation. The suites also feature large lounge areas, which is ideal for spending quality time together. During your stay, take the plunge and splash into Mövenpick JVT’s heated outdoor swimming pool for some invigorating morning lengths or a refreshing afternoon dip. The modern health club and fitness centre, are packed with a range of cardio and strength equipment, meaning your workout routine won’t take a day off when you do, and the adjacent jacuzzi and sauna will ease away the aches and tension afterwards. With the signature La’Mar Spa also coming soon to the hotel, guests can look forward to serene treatments. For the ladies, there is a dedicated pool and gym

on the roof of the hotel with beautiful skyline views, so you can complete your workout in ultimate peace with an outstanding vista. With fun for the whole family

at the heart of everything, this iconic hotel sports an exciting aquapark, equipped with slides, sprinklers, and a daring tipping bucket, ready to splash anyone brave enough to venture beneath. Furthermore, a dedicated Kids’ Club will entertain the little ones from morning until evening. If you’re looking for great dining options, then look no further. MRKT will keep guests happy all day with a jam-packed range of delicious Arabian and international dishes served up from live cooking stations. The Mövenpick Café located in the heart of the lobby, is perfect for hot drinks, light bites, baked goods, and sweet treats, with the chef’s famous chocolate hour giving guests complimentary treats daily from 4 to 5. Soon to join these culinary splendors will be Ricci’s Italian, where the tastes and aromas of the Mediterranean coastline will be brought to life including fresh seafood, pizza, and pasta. With everything on offer at this superb property, book your stay today.


HCNME EXCEPTIONAL GASTRONOMY

A THREE-DAY CELEBRATION

OF GASTRONOMY AT THE PALACE

EMIRATES PALACE HOSTS AWARD-WINNING GUEST CHEFS AT TALEA AND MARTABAAN

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egarded as a pioneer in culinary excellence, Emirates Palace, Abu Dhabi invited guests to discover a repertoire of international flavours, in partnership with awardwinning chefs. Riccardo Gaspari joins Antonio Guida in Talea and award-winning guest Masterchef Vijay Sahi joined renowned Indian Chef Hemant Oberoi at Martabaan for a three-day celebration of gastronomy, featuring some of the world’s most extraordinary dishes. The event took place from the 30th of September until the 2nd of October 2022. Nestled amidst an opulent ambience, with splendid views of the Arabian Gulf’s crystal blue waters and the Emirates Palace Marina, diners at both Talea and Martabaan were delighted by the culinary partnerships – indulging in an unforgettable feast with a contemporary twist satisfying every palate. We

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caught up with both chefs to talk about this three-day affair at the palace. Chef Riccardo Gaspari How did growing up in Italy shape your journey to becoming a chef? Italy is a country that has long since boasted a deep gastronomic culture, one which is esteemed all over the world. Being born in such a context, it was a natural progression. Cooking was a family tradition - from a very young age I watched and helped my mother, Giuliana, at the stove. She was the guardian of all the recipes of the Ampezzo tradition, from Canederli to Casunzei. What was it like winning your first Michelin Star in 2020? Winning the Michelin Star was, for me and my wife, Ludovica, incredibly satisfying and confirmed our hard work

and discipline in the kitchen, itself stemming from extensive research and attention to detail. Our efforts have also been rewarded with a Green Michelin Star in 2021, which we are equally proud of. Nevertheless, we hope this is just the beginning of our success. Let’s talk about the concept of regenerative cooking? Regenerative cooking is a concept I care deeply about. For us, regenerative cooking is caring for the land we serve and choosing to let our animals live more freely, thereby producing cheeses that change color according to what our cows eat and what the seasons offer. It lets it all happen naturally, without interference but instead by following and respecting the flow of time and enjoying the pleasure that comes from it. Regenerative, for us, is not a technique to be learned but a tool of choice for our productions. It is a philosophy for cultivation to be taught and spread. Regenerative is the circular, perpetual and reciprocal service between earth, man and nature. We hope that chefs will increasingly source more from the farms in their local area, relentlessly searching for ways to produce less waste. In my opinion, a way to promote regenerative cooking would be to set


A THREE-DAY CELEBRATION OF GASTRONOMY AT THE PALACE

“REGENERATIVE IS THE CIRCULAR, PERPETUAL AND RECIPROCAL SERVICE BETWEEN EARTH, MAN AND NATURE." How would you define good food? Food is for all senses. It ememplifies love and care for the ingredients used and the preparation made for satiating ones soul. Use fresh and seasonal ingredients. Flavour it with the right spices etc. While you continually enjoy the process of cooking. The result will definitely be a good one.

Chef Riccardo Gaspari

dynamic tasting menus based on the raw materials that are available in a specific time period depending solely on nature. For me, food without manipulation is the ultimate exaltation of a single ingredient, in all its parts. Describe the menu that you put together for this culinary event at Talea? For the menu, I tried to bring the taste of the mountains, with its sincere flavours and fragrances. I endeavoured to tell the story of my farm and land though the dishes. Chef Vijay Sahi Can you describe the first dish you’ve ever made? The first dish that I ever made was our Indian stable comfort meal steam rice served with home-made butter and Dal tadka (a traditional Indian preparation of pulses flavoured with rich Indian spices) I assume I was in my early teens then. A family favourite that has my name tagged marked to it.

What inspired you to do this collaboration at Martabaan? One thing that is very important to me is my love of Indian cuisine and its variety. I enjoy the little influences that go into cooking skills and ingredient selection based on one's geographical area. Martabaan seemed like a platform for us to showcase the range of flavors and the rich Indian culinary methods to an international audience.

signature preparation from each regional location within the country. The style of cooking, flavour, and specialties, therefore, change with the changing geographic landscapes influenced by the climatic conditions in that region. Martabaan showcase the range of flavors and the rich Indian culinary methods to an international audience, over an elaborate menu laden with preparations that take you on a tour through the regional Indian cooking traditions. Chef Vijay Sahi

Can you tell us about the menu behind this collaboration? Our menu is an elaboration of our cuisine concept. Concept: The cuisine in India is as vast and widespread as its multi-ethnic culture. The delicious and exotic dishes prepared over time are marked recipes prepared using traditional techniques, regional produce accentuated by the subtle use of spices and herbs unique to that location. The result of which is a

When did you know you wanted to become a chef? After my first exposure to the hotels, during my apprenticeship. I feel that was my calling and just liven on to pursue it all the way through with my enrolement for a hotel management course in early 2005. HOTELNEWSME.COM | NOVEMBER 2022

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HCNME THIS MONTH'S MUST-TRY FAMILY IS THE PRIORITY AT NOVOTEL JVT, AND IT IS THE IDEAL LOCATION TO CHERISH SOME QUALITY TIME.

TAKE SOME WELL-DESERVED DOWNTIME AT THE NEW

NOVOTEL JUMEIRAH VILLAGE TRIANGLE

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Make time for moments that matter most when you come and stay at Novotel JVT. This family-friendly 4-star hotel is the ideal getaway for all your family’s leisure needs. ubai, UAE (August 2022): Enjoy the contemporary comfort of this family friendly escape in the middle of Jumeirah Village Triangle. With everything you need to make your family getaway relaxing, refreshing, and fun-filled, Novotel JVT is perfectly equipped for an experience like no other. Boasting 375 rooms and suites, an exciting kids’ aquapark, fresh and interesting food options, and an ultra-modern gym, you will enter your own special world as you come through the doors of this chic and welcoming hotel. Stepping into the doors of this beautiful property, you will instantly feel the engaging and warm ambi-

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ence, along with stylish, modern décor. Each room is designed for convenience as the in-room desks are perfect to get work done or take time to marvel at Dubai’s glittering city lights from the attached balcony. Towering over the surrounding area, Novotel JVT has far-reaching unrivalled views of the magnificent city. Family is the priority at Novotel JVT, and it is the ideal location to spend some quality time. The hotel features an unrivalled aquapark, equipped with slides, sprinklers, and a daring tipping bucket, ready to splash anyone brave enough to venture beneath, along with a dedicated kids’ corner to keep the little ones entertained during their stay. Dive in and make memories that will last a lifetime.

If you’re feeling peckish, you can indulge your palate from breakfast to dinner at Thyme, which offers all day dining selections. If it’s a light bite, delicious treat, or hot drink you’re after, then the marvelous urban space at Novo Lounge has you covered. To add even more

tantalising tastes to your trip, Ricci’s Italian restaurant is coming soon to bring you creamy Italian dishes and laidback vibes by the poolside. For the fitness fanatics, Novotel JVT has a fully equipped gym with an adjacent jacuzzi and sauna to ease your aching muscles after an invigorating workout. Guests will also love splashing into the heated outdoor swimming pools for some revitalizing morning lengths or a refreshing afternoon dip. The ladies are also catered for with a dedicated rooftop gym and pool available to workout in peace surrounded by stunning views. To complete your health kick, the signature La’Mar Spa is coming soon to help guests feel the power of healing. Now is your time to take some well-earned family time and make the memories that won’t be forgotten by booking your stay at Novotel JVT today.



HCNME MOVERS AND SHAKERS

THE RISE OF COYA An expansion story from a regional favourite

YANNIS STANISIERE, COO OF COYA RESTAURANTS

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ith COYA celebrating its 10-year anniversary we caught up with Yannis Stanisiere, COO of COYA Restaurants to talk about this renowned brand’s growth in the region. With over 28 years of experience in hospitality management, Stanisiere has helped grow the COYA empire and has vastly expanded the brand’s renowned world-class service. He also expertly developed COYA into a lifestyle brand beyond a place to dine while also overseeing the opening of latest COYA’s in Doha, Riyadh and soon Muscat. Stanisiere is also currently managing the reopening of the seasonal pop-up in Mykonos. 26

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As Chief Operating Officer of COYA Restaurant & Pisco Bar, he is responsible for directing and overseeing the operations of the organisation in accordance with the strategy and business strategy approved by the board and ensuring the organisation's key goals are met. In addition to enhancing COYA’s experience across all nine of its global venues, he is also in charge of developing actionable business strategies and plans that are aligned with the short and long-term objectives of the brand’s development, including increasing brand equity and financial gains. “My key priorities have included aligning all the branches and uniting each redundant use element of the company and its distinctive DNA. This

includes Culinary, Pisco Bar, COYA MUSIC and Arts, and making COYA the number one Peruvian lifestyle brand in the world, and among the top ten lifestyle brands overall. It is my responsibility to oversee the opening of our new branches. Since I joined COYA in 2021, myself and my team have overseen the opening of COYA Riyadh earlier this year, and established COYA Doha, which opened in 2020. We reopened our seasonal venues in Mykonos and Monaco and focused on recovering the two venues after the two previous seasons were impacted by COVID. We also led the refurbishment of COYA Dubai and launched chanca by COYA, a new nightlife concept here in Dubai. COYA is constantly planning and researching where it should expand to next. By the end of 2024, we will have a total of 15 restaurants in the family. I am passionate about growing the COYA brand to become an even more recognisable global name and continue to create new memorable experiences for guests.” He adds, "Nothing comes without challenges."


THE RISE OF COYA

“MY KEY PRIORITIES HAVE INCLUDED ALIGNING ALL THE BRANCHES AND UNITING EACH REDUNDANT USE ELEMENT OF THE COMPANY AND ITS DISTINCTIVE DNA. [...] IT IS MY RESPONSIBILITY TO OVERSEE THE OPENING OF OUR NEW BRANCHES." And of course nothing comes without challenges, “I joined COYA Restaurant & Pisco Bar in January 2021, coming from New York where I used to work with the parent company D.ream International. Due to the pandemic, 2020 was a tough year for us. As Director of Projects and Developments: I had to suddenly press pause on our new developments and quickly shift our focus to current operations to support them through the crisis. Later, when I arrived at COYA in early 2021, I faced some major bumps in the road. We faced a high turnover rate in the management level across the globe, every country had its own Covid restrictions and strategies that changed continuously. Brexit impacted the pool of workers available to us in the UK. I was able to overcome these challenges by showing passion, dedication, and strength, but more importantly through the priceless support of the corporate team. You will always face challenges, this is very often part of the process of building any brand, and part of the journey that every entrepreneur goes through during the path to success. Covid also had an impact on COYA MUSIC as we had to press pause on our Ritual parties. Pushing the visibility and awareness of COYA MUSIC is a key focus for me now as having our own record label is one of our many USPs and one that helps us stand out from our competitors. Since the pandemic, we have reintroduced Ritual back to Dubai and launched it in London, Paris, Monte-Carlo, Mykonos, and held the first ever COYA MUSIC festival in Dubai. We also assessed the Membership offering that we present here in Dubai and identified a gap in the market and an opportunity to bring something different to the Jumeirah

Restaurant Village, and for music fans across the UAE. This led to us launching and creating the new concept of chanca.” Stanisiere says that he has several highlights during his time at COYA, but a few that stand out are COYA Dubai and COYA Abu Dhabi’s placement in the MENA 50 Best Restaurants list, and COYA Dubai’ glowing reviews in the inaugural Gault Millet guide. COYA is the original pioneer of Peruvian cuisine and to celebrate the 10-year anniversary, the team organised numerous special activities that perfectly embodies COYA’s eclectic music, art, and mixology focused DNA. This included a 10-year-anniversary COYA MUSIC souvenir record, which features 10 incredible tracks from COYA’s resident music producers, the Pisco Jar Art Project. This meant every COYA Pisco Bar from across the globe recruiting top local artists to decorate pisco jars in their own distinctive style. The first collection of NFTs also curated by COYA branches across the globe.

Yannis Stanisiere, COO of COYA Restaurants

Not to mention the introduction of the new after-dinner concept chanca in Dubai, which was a major milestone and a strategic move, says Stanisiere. “The venue allows COYA to step even further into the lifestyle world and offer a full post-dinner experience for guests. We already have a 2nd chanca venue in the pipeline scheduled to open in Q2 of 2023 in Spain, and it is really taking COYA MUSIC into a new and exciting place. The team also launched the guest bartending series ‘Amigos de COYA’ and we are incredibly proud that the series has been received so well. It has seen COYA Dubai and Abu Dhabi and our venues in London collaborate with Top 50 Best Bars from across the globe for exclusive special events, and we have so far worked with some amazing mixologists from prestigious bars such as the Little Red Door in Paris and Sips in Barcelona. COYA also held the event as a guest shift in Riyadh, and it brought something very different to the table

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HCNME MOVERS AND SHAKERS without any alcohol being served. We are also very excited about unveiling our ‘Macerado de COYA’ collection in the near future. “ Following the incredible response to the pop ups in both Riyadh and Jeddah, the team decided to bring the COYA brand permanently to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and open COYA Riyadh in February 2022. Overlooking Riyadh's Sulaimaniya District, one of their biggest and most stylish restaurants yet. Offering a unique ambience and exquisite experience, the launch was spearheaded by Modern Food Company (MFC), who is a leading operator of international franchise brands. The teams involved was able to skillfully bring the true essence of COYA’s worldrenowned high standards to this exciting new market.

Providing incredible views of the surrounding area, the inviting and luxurious COYA Riyadh features an open ceviche counter, an indoor terrace with a DJ corner, and a picturesque outdoor garden terrace that brings the essence of Peruvian culture to life. “We opened COYA Doha, in March 2020, and I’m pleased to say that both venues are being received exceptionally well by local and international guests. Perfectly situated in the heart of Qatar’s capital city at the W Doha Hotel & Residences, COYA Doha is going from strength-to-strength, even though it was launched during the difficult period of the pandemic. The COYA Doha brunch has already won awards, and it is ready to entertain millions of football fans who will be heading to Doha for the Qatar World Cup 2022 in November.”

COYA has an incredible growth story, having been in the region to 10 years and is ostill among the top restaurants to visit. It has developed from just one branch in Mayfair, London, to become a global empire with an all-encompassing luxury lifestyle experience. When COYA was launched ten years ago, the focus was mainly on the food, and it was designed to be a traditional restaurant with background music. Today however, COYA has evolved into a 360-degree luxury lifestyle brand. “We are so much more than a restaurant and now the music, drinks, art and vibe all play just as much of a part in the overall COYA journey as the food does. Our growth has been organic and flowed naturally. Considering the strong ties between the cities of London and Dubai, it felt natural to open in the UAE after its massive success in the UK. From there we added a second UAE branch with COYA Abu Dhabi, and established opportunities in Monaco as we realised that many of our guests like to holiday in the French Riviera. After cementing our position as one of the world’s leading luxury lifestyle brands it then felt natural to set up in Mykonos, the Greek island that had quickly become the most famous party spot in the world. Most recently, we felt compelled to join the rapidly developing and exciting market of Saudi Arabia, and open chanca to satisfy Dubai’s gap in the market for a sophisticated night spot, and a place that offers a 360-degree immersive lifestyle experience.” Stanisiere concludes by mentioning that COYA has plans to continue its expansion into other EU countries such as Spain and Italy in 2023.

“WE ARE SO MUCH MORE THAN A RESTAURANT AND NOW THE MUSIC, DRINKS, ART AND VIBE ALL PLAY JUST AS MUCH OF A PART IN THE OVERALL COYA JOURNEY AS THE FOOD DOES." 28

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Armani Hotel Dubai features seven restaurants and bars offering an exciting collection of world cuisine, from Japan and India to flavours of the Mediterranean and authentic regional Italian. The impressive culinary options reflect the cosmopolitan nature of the city and stunning restaurant interiors are complemented by exciting al fresco terrace and balcony dining opportunities.


HCNME F&B LEADERS CONFERENCE 2022

LEADERS CONFERENCE

and

Beyond

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F&B AND BEYOND

Seymone Moodley Editor in Chief Hotel & Catering News Middle East

The morning of the 21st of October 2022 was a fruitful one, as founders, CEOs, F&B executives, hotel general managers, and other F&B professionals gathered to listen, learn, and network at the annual F&B Leaders Conference 2022. This year’s theme, F&B And Beyond was set out to unpack current F&B trends, accrued revenue, successful operation models, sustainability, technology and more. The end goal was to imagine

what the future of food will look based on data, insights, and actual experience on ground. The event kicked off with opening remarks by the Hotel & Catering News Middle East, Editor-inChief, Seymone Moodley. This was then followed by a thank you to all our incredible sponsors for their support, Foodics, Sweet Earth, Nescafe, Kit Kat, Starbucks, KLC Virtual Restaurants, Deliverec, Fuildmeet, and Bidfood.

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HCNME F&B LEADERS CONFERENCE 2022

PANEL 1 | FLAVOURS; FUNCTION; FINANCIALS Panel 1 titled, Flavours; Function; Financials was moderated by Naim Maadad, Chief Executive & Founder of Gates Hospitality. He was joined on stage by, Panchali Mahendra, Managing Director of Atelier House Hospitality, Chef Uwe Micheel, Culinary Adviser at Radisson Blu Hotel, Dubai Deira Creek, Walid Hajj, Co-founder & CEO of Lavoya Group, and Gordana Josovic, Wine Specialist at Atlantis Dubai.

T

he F&B industry is the beating heart of the hospitality sector, from signature dishes to functional design and proven revenue models, this panel uncovered the latest F&B trends and so much more. Mahendra began the discussion by noting that, “Dubai is a prime time show that the whole world is watching right now, it’s a dream come true to see top-notch chefs, talents, and curators here in this city. And it This is definitely the time to be in Dubai.” Mahendra also touched on the trend of guests now being able to have a more personalised dinning experience with the chef thanks to an “over-the-counter” chef experience. Chefs are now engaged with guests and becoming more accessible and less behind-thescenes. Ultimately the diner’s overall experience is enhanced and more

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personalised than ever before. Chef Micheel brought up some of the challenges he faces as a chef, and further explained how the quality of certain ingredients have altered to fit budgets. He discussed the need for restauranteurs to find, manage and retain the right people in the business. Chef Micheel also added that the industry is going back to “real food” encourages the industry to focus on more healthy whole foods as opposed to following all the latest trends. Josovic brought a fresh perspective to the stage, having only been in Dubai for a few months. She stated that the city is the epicentre of the world when it comes to F&B making it a very exciting time to be in the industry. Having only two sommeliers when she joined Atlantis to now having over thirty, she is very optimistic that the

industry is only going to get bigger and better. She pointed out that she was happy to see sommeliers get individual recognition here in Dubai, which indicates that the beverage scene is creating its own lane in this region. Hajj introduced the topic of franchising into the discussion, having extensive knowledge and experience for over 20 years, he stated that, “This region, especially the UAE is big on franchising because of the increased brand recognition and equity. There is a lot of value to be created with bringing in brands and improving them over time. Take for instance, the Saudi Arabian market, every time I go there, I am shocked by the level of entrepreneurship and creativity on the scene. There are new homegrown concepts competing and even doing better than international markets.”


F&B AND BEYOND

GONE ARE THE DAYS WHEN MOST PEOPLE’S VIABLE FOOD DELIVERY OPTIONS CONSISTED ONLY OF PIZZA, CHINESE TAKEOUT, AND OTHER FAST FOOD.

Panchali Mahendra

Uwe Micheel

Walid Hajj

Gordana Josovic

Managing Director Atelier House Hospitality

Co-founder & CEO Lavoya Group

Culinary Advisor Radisson Blu Hotel

Wine specialist Atlantis Dubai

The conversation continued with some of the latest culinary trends in the UAE, like artisanal homestyle cooking, immersive dining, signature dishes, ingredients that will never go out of season or style. The panel also compared two popular foodservice set-ups, the dine-in vs delivery experience. Gone are the days when most people’s viable food delivery options consisted only of pizza, Chinese takeout, and other fast-food variations. The panellists covered, the pros and cons of offering food delivery, investment costs, and revenue potential. Restaurant patrons are often looking for more than an excellent menu and an eclectic atmosphere; they are looking for dynamic dining experiences for this reason, more and more restaurants are moving toward an experience-first approach, which aims to improve the entire process for the restaurant patrons. The importance of the dine-in experience from this point of view. Which lead to the question, does functionality trump aesthetics in restaurant success? The panel also covered the evolution of licensed establishments in the UAE, bringing to light the increase in the international F&B brands are entering into the Middle East and ending with each member, highlighting what personally motives them to stay in the F&B industry.

Naim Maadad Founder & CEO Gates Hospitality

HOTELNEWSME.COM | NOVEMBER 2022

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HCNME F&B LEADERS CONFERENCE 2022

PANEL 2 | THE FUTURE OF FOOD Panel 2, The Future of Food was moderated by Aby Sam Thomas, Editor-in-Chief of Entrepreneur Middle East. The panel consisted of Flo Janin, Head of Brand Communication & PR at FOODICS, Judith Cartwright, Founder and Managing Director at Black Coral Consulting, Marcela Sancho, Cofounder of House of Pops, Mubarak Jaffar, Co-founder & CEO of KLC Virtual Restaurants, and Naji Haddad, General Manager for MENA at Deliverect.

W

hat will the food and beverage scene look like in the future? This panel explored the two fundamental elements shaping the industry's present and future:

ESG AND TECHNOLOGY.

The panel followed a flow that addressed the touched on: > The need to address the human impact on climate change within the F&B sector. > Trends shifting away from fossil fuel-based energy sources, reduced water consumption, sustainable packaging, eco-friendly detergent and cleaning solutions for end-products and equipment. > The rise of plant-based foods and its positive impact on sustainability. > The cost of sustainability within the hospitality sector. > Impact of ESG on the financial performance of the food & beverage sector. > Increased IoT Connectivity and Automation in F&B > How the historically slow and conservative adaptation of new technology solutions within the F&B industry 34

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has shifted beyond the norm post pandemic this has led to new technology being introduced and applied. What are these technologies? How do they work? > F&B’s place in a new connected and contactless era. > The technology trends helping F&B businesses reinvent themselves to remain relevant and competitive. > The rise of virtual kitchens in the region. > Dine-in vs Delivery. > Essential restaurant management solutions that every restaurant should have today. > Accelerating digitalisation in the F&B industry. > Technology as a crucial driver of sustainability. TECHNOLOGY/ESG TRENDS:

> Traceability – an important trend in the food industry? (Traceability is the ability to follow the movement of a food product and its ingredients through each step in the supply chain; both backwards and forward.) > Blockchain has emerged as a powerful and efficient technology allowing consumers to trace their food from ‘farm to fork’ with a QR code scan. > Food waste tracking apps.


F&B AND BEYOND

Flo Janin

Head of Brand Communication & PR Foodics

Mubarak Jaffar

Co-Founder & CEO KLC Virtual Restaurants

Marcella Sancho Co-founder House of Pops

> According to Huawei’s Global Connectivity Index (GCI) 2020, the UAE is already ahead in terms of digital connectivity. Two of the most well-funded tech start-ups are food companies, proving that investors are

Naji Haddad

General Manager MENA Deliverect

intrigued by the potential of foodservice in the region. The panel concluded with each member describing what the future of food looks like to them.

Judith Cartwright

Founder & Managing Director Black Coral Consulting

Aby Sam Thomas

Editor in Chief Entrepreneur Middle East

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HCNME F&B LEADERS CONFERENCE 2022

PANEL 3 | PEOPLE AND OPERATIONS The final panel titled, People and Operations was led by Mohamed Fayed, Founder of Grubtech. Joining him on the stage was Sreejith Purushan, Director of Food and Beverage at Radisson Blu Dubai Deira Creek, Rikhsibay Tursunov, Director of Operations at Crowne Plaza Dubai Marina, and Janos Laszlo Founder & CEO of Pocket Trainer.

C

onstantly evolving according to consumer tastes, behaviour, and lifestyles, this sector never sleeps. The panel discussed key insights into consumer behaviour, human resource strategies, and the real impact of F&B operations in hotels. Food & beverage is no longer just an add-on amenity. Due in large part to favourable profit margins and exciting new strategies, there’s a big opportunity to grow group revenue by expanding a hotel’s F&B offerings. Some of the key discussion points from the conversation were: > The latest F&B trends hotels are adopting to optimise growth. > F&B concepts that work well within hotel operations. > Challenges and opportunities for F&B concepts in hotels. > Purposeful data driven innovation - how are

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ongoing shifts in consumer spending and dining habits being measured? Or is it simply a guessing game? > Key insights into consumer behaviour that has led to change in F&B operations. > Key F&B operation strategies. > Key F&B operation trends. > Challenges and opportunities within F&B operations. > How the F&B sector attracts new generation staff. > Key learnings for staff retention within the F&B sector. > The biggest HR challenges in the F&B industry. > What role mentorship plays in the F&B sector. > How can F&B leaders make room for staff development and mentorship?

Mohamed Fayed Founder Grubtech


F&B AND BEYOND

Sreejith Purushan Director of Food and Beverage Radisson Blu Hotel

Rikhsibay Tursunov

Director of Operations Crowne Plaza Dubai Marina

Janos Laszlo Founder & CEO Pocket Trainer

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NESCAFÉ PLAN 2030 NESCAFÉ, Nestlé’s largest coffee brand and one of the world’s favorite coffees, outlined today its extensive plan to help make coffee farming more sustainable: the NESCAFÉ Plan 2030. The brand is working with coffee farmers to help them transition to regenerative agriculture while accelerating its decade of work under the NESCAFÉ Plan. The brand is investing over one billion Swiss francs by 2030 in the NESCAFÉ Plan 2030. This investment builds on the existing NESCAFÉ Plan as the brand expands its sustainability work. It is supported by Nestlé’s regenerative agriculture financing following the Group’s commitment to accelerate the transition to a regenerative food system and ambition to achieve zero net greenhouse gas emissions. “Climate change is putting coffee-growing areas under pressure,” said David Rennie, Head of Nestlé Coffee Brands. “Building on 10 years’ experience of the NESCAFÉ Plan, we’re accelerating our work to help tackle climate change and address social and economic challenges in the NESCAFÉ value chains.” Rising temperatures will reduce the area suitable for growing coffee by up to 50% by 2050. At the same time, around 125 million people depend on coffee for their livelihoods and an estimated 80% of coffee-farming families live at or below the poverty line. Action is needed to ensure the long-term sustainability of coffee. “As the world’s leading coffee brand, NESCAFÉ aims to have a real impact on coffee farming globally,” said Philipp Navratil, Head of Nestlé’s Coffee Strategic Business Unit. “We want coffee farmers to thrive as much as we want coffee to have a positive impact on the environment. Our actions can help drive change throughout the coffee industry.”

SUPPORTING FARMERS’ TRANSITION TO REGENERATIVE COFFEE FARMING Regenerative agriculture is an approach to farming that aims to improve soil health and fertility – as well as protect water resources and biodiversity. Healthier soils are more resilient to the impacts of climate change and can increase yields, helping improve farmers’ livelihoods. NESCAFÉ will provide farmers with training, technical assistance and high-yielding coffee plantlets to help them transition to regenerative coffee farming practices. Some examples of regenerative agriculture practices include the following:

• Planting cover crops helps to protect the soil. It also helps add biomass to the soil, which can increase soil organic matter and thus soil carbon sequestration

• Incorporating organic fertilizers contributes to soil fertility, which is essential for good soil health

• Increasing the use of agroforestry and intercropping contributes to biodiversity preservation

• Pruning existing coffee trees or replacing them with disease and

climate-change resistant varieties, will help rejuvenate coffee plots and increase yields for farmers

REDUCING GREENHOUSE GAS EMISSIONS ALSO BY CAPTURING AND STORING MORE CARBON IN THE SOIL Regenerative agriculture also contributes to drawing down carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. That’s why regenerative agriculture is a key part of Nestlé’s Zero Net roadmap. NESCAFÉ aims to contribute to Nestlé’s Zero Net commitment to halve greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 and reach zero net greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. It will work with farmers, suppliers and partners to help protect agricultural lands, enhance biodiversity and help prevent deforestation. The brand intends to help farmers plant more than 20 million trees at or near their coffee farms.


FOCUSING ON ORIGINS FROM WHERE NESCAFÉ SOURCES 90% OF ITS COFFEE NESCAFÉ will be working with coffee farmers to test, learn and assess the effectiveness of multiple regenerative agriculture practices. This will be done with a focus on seven key origins, from where the brand sources 90% of its coffee: Brazil, Vietnam, Mexico, Colombia, Côte d’Ivoire, Indonesia and Honduras.

NESCAFÉ aims to achieve:

• 100% responsibly sourced coffee by 2025 • 20% of coffee sourced from regenerative agricultural methods by 2025 and 50% by 2030 as part of Nestlé’s ambition for its key ingredients

PILOTING A FINANCIAL SUPPORT SCHEME IN MEXICO, CÔTE D’IVOIRE AND INDONESIA TO ACCELERATE THE TRANSITION TO REGENERATIVE AGRICULTURE NESCAFÉ is committed to supporting farmers who take on the risks and costs associated with the move to regenerative agriculture. It will provide programs that aim to help farmers improve their income as a result of that transition. In Mexico, Côte d’Ivoire and Indonesia, NESCAFÉ will pilot a financial support scheme to help farmers accelerate the transition to regenerative agriculture. Through this scheme, NESCAFÉ, together with coffee farmers, will test and learn the best approach in each country. These could include measures such as:

• Conditional cash incentives for adopting regenerative agriculture practices • Income protection using weather insurance • Greater access to credit lines for farmers NESCAFÉ will track the progress and assess the results of its field programs with coffee farmers through its Monitoring and Evaluation partnership with the Rainforest Alliance. Its efforts will be complemented by new and expertise-focused partnerships, like the one with Sustainable Food Lab for topics related to coffee farmers’ income assessment, strategy and progress tracking.

GOING FORWARD BY BUILDING ON A STRONG FOUNDATION Today’s announcement builds on NESCAFÉ’s sustainability efforts in coffee production. Since 2010, the brand has invested in sustainability through the NESCAFÉ Plan and has made significant progress:

• Responsibly sourced coffee: 82% of NESCAFÉ’s coffee was responsibly sourced in 2021

• Coffee plantlets: 250 million new coffee plantlets distributed to farmers since 2010

• Monitoring and evaluation: impact assessment in partnership with the Rainforest Alliance across 14 countries

• Greenhouse gas emissions: 46% reduction in greenhouse gas

emissions in our soluble coffee factories (2020 vs. 2010, per tonne of product)

• Water usage: 53% less water withdrawal in our soluble coffee factories (2020 vs 2010, per tonne of product)

JOIN THE WORLD OF

Contact us: 600 595950


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MEET THE GULFHOST EXHIBITORS MENA’S MOST INFLUENTIAL HOSPITALITY & FOODSERVICE EXPO

GulfHost, MENA’s largest and most influential exhibition for hospitality buyers, will take place from the 8th to the 10th of November 2022 at Dubai World Trade Centre. Hospitality professionals will meet on a global platform to expand their network, be introduced to new products, and stablish valuable partnerships. In addition to having a wide range of advanced hospitality equipment and food service products, this year’s GulfHost will also allow visitors to engage with industry leaders. The event will feature a Foodservice Excellence Summit and a Top Table of award-winning culinary talents from across the region. We have put together a list of some of the must-visit exhibitors that will be on display at GulfHost 2022.

HOTELNEWSME.COM | NOVEMBER 2022

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UNOX HALL | ZA'ABEEL HALL 2 STAND NUMBER | B34 Founded in 1990, Unox has become the leading manufacturer of ovenbased technologies, services, and experiences, based in Italy. With a team of 86 in research and development, Unox has developed five technologies designed to maximize output, improve performance, and shape ambitions. The Unox philosophy is embodied in two words: Inventive Simplification. Unox strives to produce cutting-edge innovations and believes there is incredible value in making technology simple and usable for food service operators at any level—from Michelin-Star chefs to novice kitchen staff members. Over the years, Unox has become a symbol of “Made in Italy” for thousands of professionals and operators in gastronomy, pastry and bakery and more than one hundred countries worldwide. 42

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In the last three years, Unox’s efforts have translated into 25 registered patents and 30 registered trademarks, 130,000 oven installations, 2,000 hours of technical and service training and 40,000 hours of end-user training. Thanks to the Unox Supply Chain which is characterised by solid vertical integration; upstream with strategic supply elements and downstream with subsidiaries and sales offices in the major world markets. Unox creates value at every step from studying market needs to executing innovative design, from purchasing raw materials to the assembly process, from the delivery of the finished product to the comprehensive training for the end-user. Within the Middle East, UNOX has implemented responsible practices, including fully recyclable packaging and green materials, electric vehicles for the business fleet, introducing filtered water for zero plastic water bottle waste from the office, and wa-

terless dishwashers. These methods will be demonstrated across other vital regional offices in KSA and India by 2024. UNOX Middle East's dedication to its net-zero emissions commitment has led to a 137% increase in orders from 2021. By Q4 2023, UNOX Middle East will have achieved a 100% increase in staff employment in the UAE and KSA regional offices. By 2024, the industrial complex UNOX City will finish construction in Padua, Italy. The facilities are entirely dedicated to developing and producing state-of-the-art cooking equipment. Managing Director of UNOX Middle East and India, Matt Roberts has nearly 15 years of experience in the food service manufacturing industry. Born and raised in a popular food service hub in Liverpool, Matt spent his summers working at his father’s building company and eventually went on to become a project manager, to whom he credits his ability to problem solve. He went on to the University of Sheffield, after which he found himself in a graduate job that left him wanting a challenge to learn and grow his skills. it was at this time that Matt found his niche as a highly motivated and confident Business Development Manager in the catering industry. Matt began his career as a Sales Assistant at Counterline Ltd and was soon promoted to an Export Manager before quickly established himself as an essential member of an entrepreneurial environment, holding key accounts nationally and internationally. He was then given a career-changing opportunity when he received a sales inquiry from Kuwait. This led to him closing one of the biggest exports in Kuwait, after four months of hard work and determination. For 4 years, from 2012 until 2016, Matt advanced as a Business Development Manager at Victor Manufacturing Ltd., where he gained specifications on projects such as Abu Dhabi Future Schools Program, Abu Dhabi Louvre, The Address Dubai, Qatar Foundation Golf Club, Kazakhstan Petroleum, Emirates Lounges, and Aviation College, Motion Park Dubai, and Petroleum Development Oman, to name a few.


MEET THE GULFHOST EXHIBITORS

Matt was then Vice President of International Sales at IMC/ Britannia Ventilation (Middleby Corporation). Since joining the UNOX MENA team as Regional Director in 2018 and now leading the team as Managing Director, Matt is truly in his element. Initially approached to head up the sales department, he quickly proved his skills as a managing director by branching out beyond sales and overseeing the accounts, order processing, corporate chefs, and marketing teams. In 2022 alone, he opened offices in Riyadh, India, and South Africa. He firmly believes that the food service industry is the place for him. As Matt states, "Once you are in it, you never leave." His connections and experience within the industry convince him that there is no other avenue other than the food service industry. His exceptional account management and develop-

Matt Roberts, Managing Director, UNOX, Middle East & India

ment skills have led him to achieve and nurture key accounts, increase customer spending, and exceed customer satisfaction metrics. Matt anticipates that the Dubai Experience Centre will serve as an extension of the company's headquarters in Italy. The innovative and smooth space is a direct reflection of how far UNOX has come from its current offices, established nearly 5 years ago in JLT. Matt’s five-year plan is to achieve a 20% growth year on year for his team. Numerous new offices and demo kitchens will be opened in different regions in India, Riyadh, and Egypt. The aim is for every office to have its own country manager leading the team. What can visitors expect from your stand? Our stand will be Unveiling the SPEED-X™, the first ever self-washing combi speed oven, along with a live cooking demonstration on our flagship ovens, such as

the Cheftop Mind.Maps, Bakertop Mind.Maps, and most importantly, the SPEED-X™. The results including time, quality, and the technology used in our ovens will be expanded on and visitors can get an in-depth look at the dishes made on the day, ranging from bakery to gastronomy. Our expert team of Corporate Chefs, Active Marketing Chefs, Service engineers, and Key Account Managers will be present to offer all the help and advice on selecting the next catering solution to our guests, along with the team from regional offices for holistic support and professional guidance. What are you hoping to achieve at GulfHost 2022 this year? The SPEED-X™ is set to be one of the most revolutionary catering equipment product launches of the year. For the first time ever, operators no longer need to choose between the functionality of a combi oven and the speed of a rapid cook oven. Packed with in-

tuitive, smart technology and fully connected via the cloud, the SPEED-X is also set to transform the way a professional kitchen operates. Built-in automatic wash systems and easy-touse digital controls maintain efficiency, while the unique design eliminates the need for multiple appliances, freeing up valuable kitchen or frontof-house space in modern food service and retail establishments and our presence in GulfHost as a valuable point of connection with industry leaders for future and current food service projects. What are your expansion plans in the region? The launch of the Dubai Experience Center, the regional headquarter in will be equipped with a large demo kitchen with most trailblazing ovens ideal for cooking demonstrations. The space is set to be a cutting-edge hub for dealers, partners, stakeholders, and chefs. Unox has further plans to offices in Egypt and Saudi Arabia in 2023. HOTELNEWSME.COM | NOVEMBER 2022

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Flavie Paquay, Country Director of Business France Middle East & Head of Aggrotech Department

Business France HALL | ZA'ABEEL HALL 2 STAND NUMBER | Z2-C11 Business France is responsible for fostering export growth by French businesses, facilitating international investment in France. It promotes France’s companies, business image and nationwide attractiveness as an investment location. This national agency supporting the international development of the French economy, will be waiting to engage with visitors under the banner "Choose France" in Za’abeel Hall 2. Flavie Paquay, Country Director of Business France Middle East & Head of Aggrotech Department shed light on this year’s activities and objectives at GulfHost 2022. What products/solutions are you highlighting at GulfHost 2022? Innovation has always played a major role in the development of French companies’ expertise. The French Pavilion at GulfHost will gather manufacturers of dedicated equipment made by and for professionals from large culinary institutions such as hotels & restaurants. The local and regional visitors of the show will get the opportunity to meet in-person with select French professionals committed to offering high performance, sustainable products that exceed the current norms, with technical and industrial choices designed to guarantee the durability, such as Robot-Coupe. The show will also offer the opportunity to discover the latest innovations of: > Dynamic, the French food kitchen equipment manufacturer. The company will present its new blind & mix which is a food processor combined with a blender & cutter. > Tournus Equipement, one of the leading European man44

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ufacturers in the field of stainless-steel environment for professional kitchens, hot and cold cabinets, stainless steel furniture, shelving, hand wash basins will be present at the French pavilion at GulfHost to showcase its products and discuss business opportunities. > Sonolys Textile, the manufacturing of table linen and aprons will be also present at the French pavilion of GulfHost. The company will present a wide range of custom-made and personalized products: apron, tablecloth, napkin, table runner, placemat, breadbasket, table accessories to name just a few. > Krampouz manufacturer of crepe makers, Plancha griddles and waffle irons and warming equipment. Krampouz-branded product are a testament to the high standards and know-how of the men and women who have forged the company’s history and identity. > Roller Grill, European leader to produce catering equipment and French manufacturer of cooking and refrigerated equipment for restaurants, fast-food and bakery chains. > Santos, French manufacturer of food, coffee and juice equipment. What are you hoping to achieve at GulfHost 2022 this year? The 2022 edition of GulfHost will be a platform to connect the local & regional buyers looking for a top quality of equipment responding to the high standards set by the Industry professionals in the hospitality sector in the UAE and the region. France is committed to bringing together the leading French professionals to the region to boost the commercial relationship, signing new contracts and supplying the region with French products and equipment.The UAE culinary scene is growing and with the arrival of the Michelin guide and Gault & Millau, the competition between fine dining venues will rise. Chefs and restaurants will need the best equipment and France is here to support them. France has a long history of professional catering expertise and is proud to showcase it at GulfHost 2022. What are the expansion plans for the French companies in the region? Renewed by diversified and qualified hospitality equipment and foodservice products, French companies eye to supply the local and regional market with products made in France. GulfHost will be the perfect opportunity to meet the leaders shaping the industry, showcase their offers, and expand their businesses to the region. Some of the French exhibitors already have strong experience in the region but as Middle East is a rapidly growing part of the industry, there are a lot of new opportunities to explore.


MEET THE GULFHOST EXHIBITORS

THE COMPANY’S VISION IS TO BUILD A COMPLETE RESTAURANT MANAGEMENT ECOSYSTEM THAT ENABLES OWNERS TO RUN THEIR OPERATIONS SEAMLESSLY AND GROW THEIR BUSINESS.

FOODICS HALL | ZA'ABEEL HALL 2 STAND NUMBER | Z2-D8 FOODICS is the leading Restaurant and Payment Tech company in MENA, with a 360° SaaS ecosystem supporting its end-to-end digitisation making it a pioneer in the regional F&B industry. Formally licensed as a Fintech company by the Saudi Central Bank (SAMA), the company’s vision is to build a complete restaurant management ecosystem that enables owners to run their operations seamlessly and grow their business. Its mission is to empower restaurant and merchant owners with a comprehensive cloud-based POS system to enrich their operations. Our mission is to empower every person who contributes to the success of a restaurant business and provide financial support to fuel its growth. FOODICS caters to every segment of the F&B sector from traditional dinein restaurants, cafés, quick service restaurants, bakeries, food trucks through to cloud kitchens and nonfood micro-retailers. Since its inception in 2014, it has successfully processed over 6 billion orders through the platform,

making it one of the most promising SaaS companies to emerge from the MENA region and the most trusted one-stop-shop software and financial platform for restaurants. For more information, please visit www.foodics.com What products/solutions are you highlighting at GulfHost 2022? We are unveiling our latest technology showcase as part of a regional roadshow of events, one that will future proof the F&B sector.

What are you hoping to achieve at GulfHost 2022 this year? We look forward to connecting with players in the F&B and hospitality sector, be ecosystem partners, customers, and prospects. We look forward to seeing you on our stand in Zabeel Hall No2, at stand No Z2-D8. What are the expansion plans for the French companies in the region? Since our inception in 2014, Foodics has successfully processed over 6 billion orders through its platform. We also raised a record US$170 million in our series C funding round earlier this year, boosting our innovation capabilities to better serve business owners as well as our expansion plans within and outside the region.

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Ronai HALL | ZA'ABEEL HALL 2 STAND NUMBER | A65 Ronai LLC is the Middle East distributor of some of the world’s most prestigious brands in hospitality, including Dudson, Genware, Royal Crown Derby, Nude, Bonzer, Borgonovo, Comas and other well-known trademarks We carry a vast range of products in our portfolio allowing us to provide clients with an all-round solution to their front and back of house requirements. Products include crockery, flatware, bar, and kitchen equipment, including specialist chefs’ knives, table presentation and service options, wood, stainless steel, and glassware Our uniform collection, created by our in-house designer and manufactured in the UAE, features a host of essential garments. Our Uniforms by Ronai catalogue showcases items suitable for use in various job functions, particularly the hospital46

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ity industry, where they are proving extremely popular throughout the region. It is our objective to offer fixed pricing together with a very high level of service, including stock holding and a strong sales force with extensive industry knowledge. We are constantly evolving, and it is our hope that we become the choice supplier to the hospitality industry in the Middle East. For details on all our products and services please visit our website www. ronai.ae For GulfHost this year we will showcase our entire collection, featuring tableware and culinary products exclusively available with our partners from around the world. We are introducing a new chinaware brand to our portfolio, Royal Salisbury. The collection comprises beautiful white bone China pieces in a variety of shapes and designs, perfect for all day dining, banqueting and in-room service. Our Uniforms by Ronai brand will also

feature strongly across the stand as we will be launching our new uniforms catalogue for 2023. Featuring a host of garments, new designs and fabrics, mannequins will display a vast collection, allowing visitors to browse the range and appreciate the variety and quality. An added division of the Uniforms by Ronai brand will also be showcased this year, the new ‘Bespoke by Ronai’ collection allows for a more targeted approach offering unique, one-off garments for tailor made requirements The width of our product range allows us to cater to a variety of requests from companies both across the UAE and other Middle East countries. We are interested in seeing how other Gulf countries are developing and will be keen to assess their requirements for 2023 and beyond. Saudi Arabia is an important strategic area for us moving forward so we look to meeting contacts and develop the relationships in this ever-evolving market.


MEET THE GULFHOST EXHIBITORS

RATIONAL HALL | ZA'ABEEL HALL 2 STAND NUMBER | Z2-B4 RATIONAL AG is the world leader in thermal cooking technology for professional kitchens. For more than 46 years, our mission has been to provide our customers with the best tools for cooking. Starting in 1973 with only 18 employees, our success has been built on an unwavering commitment to a shared goal of continually creating value for our customers. We see ourselves as an innovative solutions provider. Above all else, our utmost priority is to satisfy our customers. This vision has transformed RATIONAL into a global market and technology leader. As such, 140 million dishes are prepared daily worldwide in RATIONAL units. With over 1,200,000 RATIONAL units on the market, our cooking systems

have become a standard in professional kitchens all over the world. As a worldwide specialist in hot food preparation, we set ourselves the daily challenge of continuously improving our products. The result: the iCombi Pro® and the iVario Pro®, our intelligent cooking systems, generate gains in flexibility, efficiency, and sustainability in the day-to-day challenges in the kitchen. What products/solutions are you highlighting at GulfHost 2022? This year when GulfHost opens its doors, we will be showing our answer to the nowadays challenges of the food industry, which are staff shortages and high operating costs. The combined solution of iCombi Pro and iVario Pro, can cover up to 95% of standard applications in hot food preparation.

In addition, we will demonstrate ConnectedCooking, our cloud solution, which helps digitalise the kitchen. What are you hoping to achieve at GulfHost 2022 this year? Of course, we want to meet with our potential and existing Customer base and discover the latest market news and trends. We want to demonstrate to the market our solutions for different types of businesses and to share your knowledge and expertise. What are the expansion plans for the French companies in the region? RATIONAL has been present in the Middle East for more than 15 years and all this time were growing our business and investing in our team, we will continue to do this. HOTELNEWSME.COM | NOVEMBER 2022

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RAK Porcelain HALL | ZA'ABEEL HALL 2 STAND NUMBER | Z2-A81 RAK Porcelain specializes in the crafting, manufacturing, and supply of exquisite tableware such as the High Alumina Ivory Porcelain, Zirconium White Porcelain, Coloured Porcelain, Rakstone and newest ensemble Bone China catering to the International HORECA Industry. Headquartered in Ras Al Khaimah, the production facility spans an impressive 100,000 square meters equipped with state-of-the-art machinery capable of producing 26 million pieces of highquality tableware and top shelf décor accessories annually. The Core base of operations are located in Luxembourg (Europe), New York (US) and UAE which function via a robust distribution network spanning across 5 continents reaching over 165 countries. The company’s easy to reach distribu48

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tion strategy has resulted in partnerships with leading hotel chains, world class restaurants and business giants of the catering segment. Being one of the fastest growing porcelain tableware enterprises, RAK products today serve as a canvas for Chefs' to express their creativity in more than 40,000+ starred hotels, international airlines, premium cruise liners, convention centres, stadiums, and several acclaimed professionals proudly endorse it in various segments of the HORECA industry. The specialised tableware is a novel combination of quality, durability and aesthetics consisting of sophisticated tableware by talented designers from across Europe that provides unique dining experiences which speaks of their love for creativity and experience. Technical expertise and passion for quality makes it the preferred choice of tableware for chefs. Collaborations with hotel groups offers the company flexibility and a


MEET THE GULFHOST EXHIBITORS

wide array of customisation of premium porcelain tableware.. RAK Porcelain is a reliable partner and one stop tabletop solution provider to hospitality professionals in search of excellence and innovation. What products/solutions are you highlighting at GulfHost 2022? Through an era of redefining gastronomy as an art form, RAK Porcelain consistently strived to bring chefs’ visions of artistry to life. Amidst an array of stylish tabletop ambiences, we now have another jewel on our crown

LE BALLET the luxury Bone China collection; the first of its kind in the region. With global brand leaders under one roof at GulfHost, we proudly present inspiring yet sublime ranges Bravura and Fedra and its exquisite extension Les Decors in 14 new alluring designs. Don’t miss out on an enchanting journey of elegant fantasy at Z2-A81. What are you hoping to achieve at GulfHost 2022 this year? It is exciting to see pioneers of the culinary industry taking the centre stage

this year and we definitely wouldn’t want to miss out on the opportunity to mark our presence at global level. Absolutely looking forward for exciting collaborations, exchanging ideas, expertise, and inspiration. What are the expansion plans for the French companies in the region? Growth is an integral part of any brand’s lifecycle. At RAK we started with Ivory Porcelain, then we ventured into White Porcelain based on the market requirements. We then added colours to our ranges with Fusion, next

was the revolutionary first of its kind Rakstone followed by game changer Bone China in 2022. The year ahead is set to be yet another milestone in our journey with the addition of 10 million pieces in production catering to several new concepts in the region Launching the body mix will be the industry's first and allow RAK to grow their annual capacity to a whopping 36 million pcs per annum. We are moving towards a leadership in the Hotel Tableware Industry to be the one stop solution to all Ceramic Tableware needs.

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We invite F&B and hospitality leaders to experience Spades on our Stand Z2-E87 with a live demo that mimics diners’ at-table end-to-end payment journey. We look forward to providing valuable market and industry data that we collected from over 200 restaurants and cafes transacting on Spades. This data helps F&B leaders make informed decisions that will allow them to improve their customer experience, operations and profit margins.

SPADES HALL | ZA'ABEEL HALL 2 STAND NUMBER | Z2-E87 Spades is a fintech start-up disrupting the F&B space by digitising the dine-in payment experience. Launched in November 2021 in the United Arab Emirates, Spades’ growth has expanded to Saudi Arabia and Singapore serving hundreds of restaurants, cafes, and hotels. Spades offers a payment solution that reduces the at-table checkout time to 10 seconds only. Customers can safely scan or tap a customized QR code to browse the restaurant’s menu, view their bill in real time, split the payment, add a tip for their waiter, pay the bill with their preferred payment method, and leave valuable feedback of their experience - all from their smartphones 50

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The solution is fully integrated with all major POS systems such as Micros, Revel, Foodics, Tevalis, Linga, Squirrel, Lightspeed and many more. With its unique two-way integration, Spades can both read an open bill and close it in real-time without the need for a manual intervention, thus saving restaurants 15 minutes per table. Over 200 restaurants are in business on Spades, and more than 350K unique diners have used Spades to split and pay their bills, saving in the process hundreds of thousands of paper receipts. What products/solutions are you highlighting at GulfHost 2022? We are proud to be showcasing our innovative F&B Payment Solutions at GulfHost.

What are you hoping to achieve at GulfHost 2022 this year? WWe are excited about the opportunity to meet with leaders and learn from top experts about the latest trends and innovations in the F&B and Hospitality sector. We aim to develop sustainable partnerships with F&B and hospitality brands as well as technology companies in the F&B and food tech industries. This enables them to better serve our merchants and delight our end users with the best dine-in payment experience. What are the expansion plans for the French companies in the region? Spades is under a year old but has experienced phenomenal growth with hundreds of merchants live in 3 markets; UAE, KSA and Singapore. Our focus today is on providing our customers with the best digital payment experience and the most competitive rates in the market. With a suite of value-added services in our pipeline, we aim to provide our merchants with digital solutions that will enable them to drive traffic to their outlets. In addition, Spades also strives to give merchants the opportunity to reward repeat customers, enhance the user experience and operational data, grow their business with financial, loyalty and AI powered tech solutions.


08-10 NOV 2022 DUBAI WORLD TRADE CENTRE

MENA’s leading event for the

G O UR ME T & FI NE FOOD Industry

Artisanal & Gourmet | Vegan & Plant-Based Organic & Free-From | Health & Wellness Food Service | Speciality Coffee

Register to visit www.speciality.ae 5 EVENTS | 3 DAYS | 1 VENUE


NEWS Middle East

2022

Hotel & Catering News Middle East’s highly anticipated Leaders in Food & Beverage Awards 2022 took place at Sofitel Dubai The Palm, on the 21st of October 2022. The Food and Beverage scene in the region is BIG, BOLD, and BOOMING with some of the most influential people behind the most beloved hospitality brands. A playground for iconic F&B brands and acclaimed chefs, a melting pot of cuisines from around the world, Dubai is the culinary capital of the world, and this award’s ceremony was where the true Leaders in F&B came out to play. The night began with

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a big thank you to all our sponsors who made the event extra special, Foodics, Sweet Earth, Nescafe, Kit Kat, Fuildmeet, Chefmate, African Eastern, and Bidfood. There was also a special message to all the restaurants, service providers, and people that made it onto the list. The room was packed with excitement and the winner and highly commended award receivers were thrilled to be acknowledged and celebrated. Here are your Leaders in F&B Awards 2022, congratulations to all and we look forward to seeing you again at the next F&B gala ceremony.


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BEST EAST ASIAN RESTAURANT KATSUYA

HIGHLY COMMENDED MAMAFRI ABU DHABI

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2022

BEST INDIAN RESTAURANT AMALA RESTAURANT | JUMEIRAH ZABEEL SARAY

FAMILY-FRIENDLY RESTAURANT OF THE YEAR CATCH22

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BEST MIDDLE EASTERN RESTAURANT SIRAJ SOUK AL BAHAR

HIGHLY COMMENDED SHABESTAN

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2022

BEST ITALIAN RESTAURANT LUCIA’S

HIGHLY COMMENDED VANITAS PALAZZO VERSACE DUBAI

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BEST THEMED RESTAURANT FREVO

LEADING CAFÉ SADDLE CAFE, UAE

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2022

LEADING CASUAL DINING RESTAURANT CAFÉ BEIRUT

HIGHLY COMMENDED SLAW

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LEADING FINE DINING RESTAURANT CÉ LA VI DUBAI

HIGHLY COMMENDED MAREA DUBAI

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2022

LEADING HEALTHY RESTAURANT THE ROOST ROTISSERIE

LEADING SPORTS BAR DHOW & ANCHOR

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LEADING FUSION RESTAURANT VAGA

HIGHLY COMMENDED ARMANI/HASHI

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2022

LEADING BRUNCH CONCEPT SEVEN SISTERS

HIGHLY COMMENDED COYA ABU DHABI

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LEADING NIGHTLIFE VENUE B018.DXB

HIGHLY COMMENDED GALAXY BAR

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2022

BEST INTERIOR DESIGN AMELIA DUBAI

HIGHLY COMMENDED FLASHBACK SPEAKEASY

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LEADING HOMEGROWN RESTAURANT FEBRUARY 30

HIGHLY COMMENDED FOLLY

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2022

DISRUPTOR OF THE YEAR ULA

HIGHLY COMMENDED TABŪ

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BEST NEWCOMER THE BIRDCAGE

HIGHLY COMMENDED FAT UNCLE

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2022

CATERING COMPANY OF THE YEAR EPICURE CATERING | INFINI CONCEPTS

HIGHLY COMMENDED RADISSON BLU DEIRA CREEK

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LEADING CLOUD KITCHEN DELIVEROO

BEST RESTAURANT MANAGEMENT SOLUTIONS FOODICS

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2022

SUPPLIER EXCELLENCE AWARD UNOX | MIDDLE EAST DMCC

BEST F&B SUSTAINABLE PRACTICES JUMEIRAH ZABEEL SARAY

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BEST F&B MARKETING CAMPAIGN THE LIBERTY SHOW CAMPAIGN | THE THEATRE

HIGHLY COMMENDED HIKAYAT RAMADAN GARDEN CAMPAIGN PALAZZO VERSACE DUBAI

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2022

LEADING DELIVERY PLATFORM DELIVEROO

BARISTA OF THE YEAR ANDREW BELACOL | REFORM SOCIAL & GRILL – GATES HOSPITALITY

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BARTENDER OF THE YEAR ANMOL SHARMA | ROBERTO’S

HIGHLY COMMENDED MERVIE CALISIN CROWNE PLAZA DUBAI MARINA

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2022

BAR MANAGER OF THE YEAR MERIL FERNANDO | 7 MANAGEMENT

F&B PR MANAGER OF THE YEAR CYRINE EL KLIFI | GRAND MERCURE AND IBIS STYLES

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PASTRY CHEF OF THE YEAR AMOGELANG SEFARA | AVLI BY TASHAS

HIGHLY COMMENDED TEGUH HENDRAWAN 11 WOODFIRE

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2022

CHEF OF THE YEAR BEATRICE SEGONI | PIERCHIC, JUMEIRAH AL QASR

HIGHLY COMMENDED ROBERTO RISPOLI JUMEIRAH MINA A’SALAM

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RESTAURANT MANAGER/GENERAL MANAGER OF THE YEAR ZEXIN SHAO | ARMANI HOTEL DUBAI

HIGHLY COMMENDED MOHAMED JALIL ANANTARA THE PALM DUBAI RESORT

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2022

F&B MARKETER OF THE YEAR CLAY DUBAI TEAM | FOOD FUND INTERNATIONAL

HIGHLY COMMENDED VARQ TEAM TAJ EXOTICA RESORT & SPA, THE PALM JUMEIRAH

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F&B MARKETER OF THE YEAR SERGE TRAD | ADDMIND HOSPITALITY

HIGHLY COMMENDED MARIAM SALLAM PULLMAN DUBAI DOWNTOWN

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2022

F&B MARKETER OF THE YEAR MAHESWAR KISSENSING | BANANA ISLAND RESORT DOHA

BY ANANTARA (GIACOMO PUNTEL COLLECTING THE AWARD ON BEHALD OF M.KISSENSING)

HIGHLY COMMENDED ROSALIND PARSK SHERATON GRAND HOTEL, DUBAI

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YOUNG F&B LEADER JENSEN MOONIEN | LAGUNA BEACH TAVERNA AND LOUNGE

HIGHLY COMMENDED MOE JULY PARAMOUNT HOTELS DUBAI

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2022

OPERATIONS MANAGER OF THE YEAR LUKAS TREMMEL | MEDIA ONE HOTEL

F&B ENTREPRENEUR OF THE YEAR WASSIM ZOUEIN | ADDMIND HOSPITALITY

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F&B HEAVYWEIGHT RABIH FAKHREDDINE | RABIH FAKHREDDINE (TATIANA KHOURY COLLECTING AWARD ON BEHALF OF R.FAKHREDDINE)

HIGHLY COMMENDED PANCHALI MAHENDRA ATELIER HOSPITALITY

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EDITORS CHOICE AWARD FOR YOUNG F&B ENTREPRENEUR MOHAMED AL FALASI | SADDLE

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HCNME F&B FOCUS

A CLOSE-UP

OF ABU DHABI’S HOSPITALITY SCENE BY PASCAL PINAZO, GENERAL MANAGER OF FOUQUET'S ABU DHABI, ÉCLAIR DE GÉNIE, PARADISO, ART LOUNGE AND LOUVRE ABU DHABI MUSÉUM CAFÉ CHEZ BARRIÈRE

L

ike every industry, it’s no secret that the UAE’s hospitality sector has faced numerous challenges over the last few years. However, the government has worked hard to control the COVID-19 pandemic and bring life back to normal in a safe and careful manner. In fact, I’m pleased to say that the hospitality sector is recovering rapidly Groupe Barriere has come a remarkably long way since we opened Fouquet’s Abu Dhabi in 2020. By sheer determination and hard work, the Fouquet’s Abu Dhabi team has seamlessly managed to adapt and evolve to match the ever-changing needs

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of the market, and of course, "the new normal" brought on by the pandemic. By working together as a team, supporting one another and always listening to the opinions of our team members and customers, we have ensured that the restaurant has continued to grow in reputation and achieve ever-increasing levels of success. Our special seasonal menus, such as the ones for Easter, Bastille Day and Christmas, have all proved to be extremely popular, while the talents of our chefs and employees have been recognised with a number of awards. This includes winning the ‘Restaurant of the Year’ accolade in 2022, and the ‘Best European Restaurant’ award in 2021. In addition, Executive Chef Balveer Balkissoon was a finalist for the ‘Future Great Award’ at the recently launched and highly prestigious Gault&Millau UAE Gala 2022. Chef Hugo, our Executive Pastry Chef, has also gained great admiration and respect for his skills at crafting impeccable sweet delicacies. He has enchanted countless guests with his seasonal specials, such as his show-stopping yule logs,


A CLOSE-UP OF ABU DHABI’S HOSPITALITY SCENE

indulgent homemade Easter eggs and an ever-changing array of cakes and pastries. He was also formerly recognised for his talents when he won first prize for creating the best galette in the UAE at the Chef Middle East Fall into Christmas competition, and the second prize for Chef Middle East’s best Christmas log contest. Our rooftop bar Art Lounge and hidden speakeasy style night spot Marta Bar continues delight guests from around the world with their exceptional bespoke beverages and delicious bites. In fact, our success has been so considerable that, despite the closures and restrictions of the last few years, we have still been able to expand our venues to open Paradiso Abu Dhabi at Yas Bay and Éclair de Génie at Yas Mall in Q4 of 2021.

The latter specialises in decadent and artistic French pastries, while the former takes diners on a journey through the fresh flavours, tastes, and aromas of the Mediterranean basin. Perfect for families, friends and couples, both venues offer endless delights for both residents and tourists alike and each is gathering momentum and forming a loyal fan base. I’m hopeful that the UAE capital’s luxury hospitality scene will continue to thrive in future years. Indeed, I believe that Abu Dhabi’s desire to be a key global hub for live events and large-scale projects will help boost the success of the industry. The Abu Dhabi Department of Culture and Tourism attracts global business leaders to the UAE capital throughout the

Pascal Pinazo, General Manager of Fouquet's Abu Dhabi, Éclair de Génie, Paradiso, Art Lounge and Louvre Abu Dhabi Muséum Café chez Barrière

year thanks to its enticing programme of high-powered world fairs and conferences. Other large-scale sporting events, such as UFC, NBA basketball, and of course, the Formula 1 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, are coming up over the next 12 months, while live music events are held on a regular basis. The government is going to great lengths to market our city as a desirable tourist destination. In conclusion, I see many exciting opportunities and great developments on the

horizon for all of us working in Abu Dhabi’s hospitality sector, and I feel exceptionally privileged to be a part of it. With five Abu Dhabi venues already in our portfolio - Fouquet's Abu Dhabi, Éclair de Génie, Paradiso, Art Lounge and Louvre Abu Dhabi Muséum Café chez Barrière - it is testament to the skills and talents of our teams that have been able to overcome the many challenges thrown at us and emerge thriving and positive.

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HCNME POINT OF VIEW

How hotels can borrow a few useful traits from start-up culture

LESSONS FROM START-UPS

AND START-UP CULTURE BY MARTIN KUBLER, CHIEF SLOTH AT THE GLUTTONOUS SLOTH, HORECA CONSULTING WITH ATTITUDE

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ver the past 10 years, I have been involved in several start-ups. Some were successful, others fizzled out eventually. However, all were full of highly energised employees and adherents of start-up culture. Just a few weeks ago,

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the CEO of a start-up I’m currently connected with bemoaned the fact that “We have lost our start-up culture! People are getting complacent!” What exactly is start-up culture then and what can hotels and restaurants learn from it? Start-ups aside, I have also been involved in various hotel and restaurant openings over the years. The interesting thing is that none of these ever thought of themselves as a “startup” – a term traditionally associated with the tech industry. Start-up culture is aimed at breaking down the barriers and hurdles of growth that more established corporations might have. You might say “But what about the bean bags, free ice cream, and billiard tables?” – stereotypical Silicon Valley start-up benefits. That’s not what’s on the table here, though – work environment (beanbags, foosball tables, free massages) is not synonymous with start up culture. None of the start-ups I’ve been involved with so far had free ice cream or bean bags, though I have seen billiard tables. What they did have, was a culture centred around passion, personality, agility, and authenticity

– surely, these aren’t just tech things. We talk a lot about passion, personality, and authenticity in hospitality, so why doesn’t opening a new hotel feel like being involved with a start-up? Hotels, restaurants, and start-ups are all different experiences based on how they function, their decision-making processes, and the size of the workforce, among other factors, which also influences the culture of the business. In start-ups, culture is central, structures are flat, people wear multiple hats, work hours vary, and creativity is valued highly. In hotels and restaurants, culture is often limited or dictated from the top, structures are (still) fairly hierarchical, people are hired for a specific role, work set hours, and (often) do fairly routine work. I’m not saying that one culture is necessarily better than the other, but as an industry, we could learn a few important things from start-ups: Speed, for example. Start-ups are built to grow fast. Hotels and restaurants are also very speed focused. Yet, startups often cope better with picking up the pace than hotels. That’s because they


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are intentional about culture from the start. If you aren’t setting a fast growth culture from the start, you’ll quickly lose control of it. This can lead to bad hires, employee gossiping and toxic work environments. In hotels and restaurants, core values are typically outlined by the identity of the company, including its mission statement, products and customer service. In start-up cultures, these core values tend to reflect the personalities and ethos of the people who work for the business. Yes, guests are important, but those who serve them and the way they provide the service is what gives a hotel or restaurant its unique identity. I guess what I’m saying is, look inside for solutions, before looking outside. So what did the CEO mean when he moaned that “We have lost our start-up culture!”? Mostly, that people started to see their jobs as a series of routine tasks where the nature of the results didn’t really matter – if a target isn’t met today, there’s always

WANT TO BORROW A FEW USEFUL THINGS FROM STARTUPS? FOCUS ON YOUR COMPANY CULTURE – NOT THE ONE DICTATED BY THE BRAND OR HEAD-OFFICE, BUT THE ONE THAT BEST FITS THE BUSINESS YOU’RE MANAGING. tomorrow. “Failing fast” has given way to “let’s just exist”, fewer new ideas are generated and tested, which further slows growth. Want to borrow a few useful things from start-ups? Focus on your company culture – not the one dictated by the brand or head-office, but the one that best fits the business you’re managing. Move fast, keep meetings to a minimum, and ensure your people fail fast. Do not let them try the same old ideas over and over in the hope of generating surprising new results. Model the behaviour you want to see and others will follow – that’s why it’s so important for the values to be personal to your location, business,

and teams. Value diversity in teams and different view points. Embrace risk. If the same tired marketing ideas didn’t work in the past, why should they work now and what have you got to lose by trying out something completely different? It might just work and if not, remember failing fast – just try something else. Above all, nurture kindness. The start-ups I’ve been involved in have been among the kindest places I ever worked in, because the culture focused on individuals and how they can make a difference. Start-up culture isn’t about the team outings, the beanbags, candies, or free cold brew, it’s just about treating people right.

HOTELNEWSME.COM | NOVEMBER 2022

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HCNME TECH & INNOVATION WHY FIVE-STAR GUEST EXPERIENCES

START WITH PAYMENTS

Insights from leading hospitality brands on delivering high quality service through personalised, flexible payments technology

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BY Sander Martens, Head of Middle East for Adyen

he traveller of today aspires to be continuously connected, both online and offline. They expect the same kind of experiences at hotels, airlines and retail stores where they expect to be able to book via their preferred channels and pay using their preferred payment methods. As global hospitality brands look for ways to satisfy these evolving guest demands, payments have emerged as an area of opportunity. Smart services and capabilities once considered optional (like mobile check-in) are now quickly becoming mandatory in a pandemicrecovering world.

The case for digital transformation in hospitality

The hospitality industry in the UAE has always shown exceptional growth and resilience, with the second-highest

global occupancy rate even at the peak of the pandemic in 2020 . Guests felt safe as hotels worked tirelessly to put safety measures in place – with contactless devices allowing guests to selfaccess hotel rooms; biometric options for touchless entry, voice-controlled commands, and so on . For hotels to succeed today, providing guests with relevant payment methods, touch-free experiences, and consistency of payment methods online and on-site are necessary. Integrating a payment solution into the different systems on premise (such as a PMS) helps in automating laborious processes in daily operations. Historically, paying for a stay, meal, or amenity has been a point of friction for hotels. This was mainly due to reconciliation and non-integrated techstacks among others. New payment technologies that integrate with PMS systems smoothed out these difficulties, allowing hotels to deliver a seamless customer experience without sacrificing luxury. Mobile payments using platforms like mobile point-of-sale (POS), Pay by Link, hotel apps – which allow the option to use digital wallets and contactless cards - help customers view menus as well as pay at the table from their smartphone, thus simplifying the guest experience. Given that guests want to choose the right journeys for themselves, providing options like self-check-in aligns with their expectations.

Payments technology removes manual work for hotel staff

The most obvious beneficiaries of a payments-centric approach are guests. But there’s plenty in it for hotels, too, especially when they work with a forward-looking partner who can automate payment innovations, remove PCI scope, centralise all channels and 90

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regions, and simplify reporting in one place, like Adyen. For example, fast-growing boutique hotel brand citizenM focuses on delivering design-forward luxury with surprising affordability in major cities around the world. Guests and staff save minutes at check-in and check-out thanks to automation through self-service kiosks in every lobby. Room cards serve as tokens which guests can use to order a meal or a drink, and charge it to their room. citizenM also has a unified view and management system of their payment data, 24/7 and across all their global branches, courtesy of Adyen.

Payments technology turns insights into loyalty-driving incentives With the right payment solution, hotel brands can accomplish larger goals such as integrating all properties, regions, and channels with centralised reporting. This gives hotels a greater advantage, as it gives them easy access to data on guest history and behaviour. Such knowledge is a must for guest retention.

Unifying sales channels and properties with one payments solution:

> Gather insights into pay-outs, number of chargebacks, types of payment methods, and transaction volumes across channels. > Get a better understanding of how the business is doing, from guest behaviour to channel and location performance. > Build loyalty programmes that are personalised for guests, based on their actual preferences and past behaviours. > Up-sell services based on guest preferences and history.

In hospitality, payments are key to winning and retaining guests

As guests are now accustomed to frictionless, customised experiences in other industries, they are more likely to choose hotels that offer similar journeys. The silver lining here is there’s a massive opportunity for hospitality businesses to find the sweet spot. The right payment technology can elevate the guest experience, deliver repeat guests, and grow the overall brand.


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