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January-February 2017 | New Delhi | India

www.hotelsandculinaryasia.com

! t a ou y e SeHOTELEX 2017

SHANGHAI

Global Code of Ethics for Tourism

HEALTH THE GELATO-

Pastry selection gets wider

Cake of the Year 2017

RETREATS GastroPan

will be awarded at

WITH ELITE

Hospitality, Food PERSONAL TRAINER Service, Bakery & HARRY JAMESON Confectionery Expo


Equipment, Coffee and Food 40th International Hospitality Exhibition October 20_ 24, 2017 fieramilano

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Hotel Sales – It’s Time to Use Video Email to Outsell the Competition

By Doug Kennedy, Columnist HCA and President of the Kennedy Training Network, Inc.

JANUARY-FEBRUARY 2017 | Vol. 6 No.1 | New Delhi, India Annual Subscription: India: Rs.2000 | Overseas: US$250 They say the first bite is taken with the eye, and here’s an appetizer of what’s in store. Hotels & Culinary Asia (HCA) is a B2B magazine for the ever-growing Hotel, Food, Travel and Lifestyle Industries. HCA, through print and online magazine is the authenticated information network that connects you with latest information of the connected industries and as the key media partner to the major industry events around the world, you can trust HCA to serve you with what you need. A quick glance through our pages will lead you into the world of the now in-demand technologies, services and events and much more. Our aim is to update you with the most happenings in the world of hotel, food, travel and lifestyle industries. Dive in, read, explore through our pages and we shall serve you to the best of our abilities and honour our commitment towards excellence.

I n T h e P a g e s 6 Multifruit CHERRY, “le plus chic” multi-juicer by ZUMEX® 8 Celebrate this Valentine’s Day at Atlantis 12 Host 2017: The Gelato-Pastry selection gets wider 16 HEALTH RETREATS WITH ELITE PERSONAL TRAINER HARRY JAMESON IN 2017 24 SIR PETER BLAKE CREATES BESPOKE COLLAGE 25 The Bread and the Cake of the Year 2017 will be awarded at GastroPan exhibition in March 31 Get Ready To Battle For The Ultimate Prize In Football 32 Is Hospitality Becoming More Fragile or More Resilient? 36 Hilton Honors Provides Exclusive Access to Once in a Lifetime Music Experiences 38 Viajes El Corte Inglés commits to Global Code of Ethics for Tourism 44 Unlocking a hotel innovation strategy 46 2017: Year of Eastern Europe 47 Most expensive luxury hotels in Florida named 50 New stylish uniforms for Pullman 52 Pullman Sydney Airport deploys new cloud-based communications system 54 Star Ratings Australia

Based on what I hear from the hotel sales and catering sales managers I train each month, the vast majority of inquiries for groups, meetings, conferences and catering events are being received electronically. Some come in via direct email; others arrive after a planner completes a “contact us” inquiry form at the hotel’s website. Most, however, arrive via third party platforms such as CVENT, Starcite, MeetingBroker, or via the local DMO or CVB. When planners reached out by phone, they tended to inquire at far fewer properties as it took much more effort. Now after a few keyboard strokes and the push of a “submit” button, their inquiry goes out to dozens of hotel sales offices. As a result, sales managers are overwhelmed with “lead spam” and experiencing “lead fatigue.” Nonresponse rates have skyrocketed, and those who do respond promptly all too often tend to send back generic sales collateral. Sales messages are mostly cut and pasted from templates and attached as PDF’s that contain mostly generic commentary and similar images as all the others. Given these business conditions, it is more challenging than ever to stand-out. Although I’m an advocate of placing a phone call – unless the sender specifically says not to – it is challenging to get someone to even pick-up these days if they don’t recognize the caller.Now there is a brand new way for hotel sales and catering sales managers to ensure that their responses stand out from all of the others, and that is to use personalized video email messages. Until now, using the medium of video was time consuming and challenging. Although has always been easy to record video messages, sending them was another matter. Video files are too large to send as email attachments, so one would have to use a file sharing method such as DropBox. The only other option so far has been to upload videos to platforms such as YouTube or Vimeo and then to send the URL link in an email message, or to embed it in the email. While this can work well for email marketing campaigns sent to distribution lists, the effort required made it impractical for everyday one-to-one sales correspondence. For those of us who are early adapters of sales technology, there is now a brand new option as several new platforms enable salespeople to easily create and send video email messages show up in the body of the email message itself. Not a link, but the actual video right there, with an enticing “Play” button. By finding creative ways of displaying the sales prospect’s name, (and their company or organization if applicable), the receiver will clearly see that it is a personalized message not a generic marketing video. Of course, salespeople will still want to respond via the platform on which the RFP was received, and it is usually always a good idea to also send the response directly to the prospect’s email address when it is provided (unless specially instructed to reply only in the platform.) However, to get your response noticed a personalized video email can go a long way. Imagine the smiling face of a hotel catering manager responding to a bride-to-be while holding images of other weddings held in the venue. Or even better, imagine them sending a personal video email from their smartphone on Saturday night as a wedding is being set up, enticing each bride-to-be on their list with a personalized video message saying “Hello Margaret! It’s a beautiful evening here as we set-up for another fabulous wedding! Here’s a look at what yours will look like if you give us the opportunity to host it!” Or, picture a corporate hotel sales manager sitting in front of a logo-themed backdrop looking into the webcam and expressing how much they want to host the group meeting or conference. I predict that this new technology will catch on very quickly, but those who learn to use it to its fullest potential will continue to stand out even once the gimmick wears off. If you a hotelier who would like to receive a sample of how to use video email, send me a traditional “old school” email and I promise to reply. doug@kennedytrainingnetwork.com

EDITORIAL: Reny, Sarvjit, Diamond Singh, Vishwapreet Kaur & Amrita (India), Anna (Sweden), Mike (UK), Liza (Singapore), Upi (Indonesia), Ying & Adrian (China), Arvi (Australia). Columnist: Carolyn Childs, (MyTravelResearch.com); Doug Kennedy (Kennedy Network Training) Public Relations Director: Winnie. Advisor: Rajiv Sanghavi. Design, Art & Web Development: Diamond Infomedia. Publisher: Milinia Plus. B-2-B Group Publications: PRINTING REVIEW, Medical Device ASIA, autoASIA, Plastics & Rubber Review. Contacts: To advertise: advertise@hotelsandculinaryasia.com, to submit a press release: editorial@hotelsandculinaryasia.com, to subscribe: subscribe@hotelsandculinaryasia.com. Published, printed, & owned by Vishwapreet Kaur on behalf of Milinia Plus. at , D-182, PR House, Anand Vihar, 110092, New Delhi, India and printed by her at Technical Press, D-182/C, Anand Vihar, 110092, New Delhi, India. Views expressed in this magazine are of the contributors, authors and companies and not necessarily of the publisher and/or editors’ and they do not take any responsibility for the errors and/or accuracy of the information published in this publication. No part or design of this magazine can be reproduced without prior permission of the publisher, who reserves the right to use the information published in this magazine in any manner whatsoever.

Hotels & Culinary ASIA | January-February 2017 | 3


TII enters into Joint Venture with Absolute Speciality to open Bicycle cafes in India under the Ciclo Cafe brand Tube Investments of IndiaLtd (whose unit TI Cycles is a leading bicycle maker in India) has entered into a 50-50 Joint Venture with Chennai-based Absolute Speciality Foods Chennai Pvt Ltd to open Bicycle cafes in select locations in India, to be operated under the brand name Ciclo Café.

About Tube Investments of India The INR 40 billion Tube Investments of India Limited (TII) is one of the leading companies of the Murugappa Group. A specialised multidivisional engineering and manufacturing company, TI India Ltd provides mobility solutions for businesses and consumers alike. The Company has 17 manufacturing units in India and is supported by an extensive marketing network. The Company’s key business divisions namely TI Cycles, Tube Products of India, TI Diamond Chains, TI Metal Forming, Shanthi Gears, Financiere C10 and TI Tsubamex, are leaders in the segments of bicycles and components, precision steel tubes and cold rolled strips, large diameter tubes, roller chains and other metal formed products used in the automotive industries. For more details visit www. tiindia.com.

About Absolute Specialties Absolute Specialties was founded on 3rd May 2013 and is a joint initiative between Absolute Homes & Ramaniyam Real estates. Prior to creating AS, Absolute & Ramaniyam created Absolute Abodes which owns and operates a three star business hotel (Grey Suit) at Periyapalayam on the outskirts of Chennai. Absolute Specialties also owns and operates a French Bistro – L’amandier and The Velveteen Rabbit on Chamiers road in Chennai.

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he JV agreement was signed recently in Chennai by Mr. MM Murugappan (Chairman of Tube Investments of India) and Mr. Ashish R Thadani (CEO, Absolute Specialties). Speaking on the occasion, Mr. MM Murugappan said“Cycling has emerged as a popular leisure and recreational activity in India, and is gaining great popularity very fast. We believe this initiative will provide discerning patrons and cycling aficionados the platform to enjoy their love for this sport”. Mr. Ashish R Thadani added “Ciclo Cafe brings cycling enthusiasts together, as a platform for taking their interest in this exhilarating sport further, and to enjoy the taste of local and international cuisines in an atmosphere that is unique not only for the connoisseur of good food but also for the lovers of sport.” Ciclo Café is a popular brand name in hospitality and cycling circuits. Inaugurated in Chennai inMarch 2015 to serve as a hub for cycling enthusiasts in the city with top-class lifestyle facilities for both cycling (sales and service of premium bicycles, merchandise and accessories, expert advice on cycling, special rides etc.) and hospitality (premium F&B services with international cuisines), the outlet has already earned great popularity amongst cycling enthusiasts, foodies and the media alike – it was voted amongst the top 10 new concept destinations in India by NDTV, and also amongst the top 11 global cafes by India Times, in addition to being featured in several top lifestyle publications. In the present operations of the Ciclo Café outlet in Chennai, TII owns and operates the bicycles business and Absolute Speciality owns and operates the café F&B business. This would also become part of the Joint venture company. Under this Joint Venture agreement between Tube Investments of India and Absolute Specialties, this Ciclo Café brand is now slated for expansion into two other metros (Gurgaon and Hyderabad) by the end of FY 2016-17 and will look for opportunities to open in other cities. 4 | January-February 2017 | Hotels & Culinary ASIA

Absolute Specialties is promoted by their director Ashish Thadani who manages the operations along with a professional team from the Hospitality and F&B business. Ashish Thadani is also an avid cyclist and is also a key member and influencer of the cycling community and helps in strengthening the community connect with Ciclo. Their passion for Cycling has also made them understand and provide a holistic experience across both platforms.

About Murugappa Group Founded in 1900, the INR 295 Billion Murugappa Group is one of India’s leading business conglomerates. The Group has 28 businesses including nine listed Companies traded in NSE & BSE. Headquartered in Chennai, the major Companies of the Group include Carborundum Universal Ltd., Cholamandalam Investment and Finance Company Ltd., Cholamandalam MS General Insurance Company Ltd., Coromandel International Ltd., Coromandel Engineering Company Ltd., E.I.D. Parry (India) Ltd., Parry Agro Industries Ltd., Parry Sugar industries Ltd, Shanthi Gears Ltd., Tube Investments of India Ltd., and Wendt (India) Ltd. Market leaders in served segments including Abrasives, Auto Components, Transmission systems, Cycles, Sugar, Farm Inputs, Fertilisers, Plantations, Bio-products and Nutraceuticals, the Group has forged strong alliances with leading international companies such as Groupe Chimique Tunisien, Foskor, Mitsui Sumitomo, Morgan Advanced Materials, Sociedad Química y Minera de Chile (SQM), Yanmar & Co. and Compagnie Des Phosphat De Gafsa (CPG). The Group has a wide geographical presence all over India and spanning 6 continents. Renowned brands like BSA, Hercules, Montra, Ladybird, Mach City, Ballmaster, Ajax, Parry’s, Chola, Gromor, Shanthi Gears and Paramfos are from the Murugappa stable. The Group fosters an environment of professionalism and has a workforce of over 32,000 employees. For more details, visit www.murugappa.com


The firm, world leaders in the design and manufacture of innovative extraction systems, reinvents its Premium multi-juicer with a sporty and elegant design, and new finishes

Multifruit CHERRY, “le plus chic” multi-juicer by ZUMEX® that wins the hearts of fashionable premises

• In addition to the attractive and fun Multifruit CHERRY, the company extends its range with sophisticated Graphite, with a sober, but at the same time, modern style • This machine is the perfect balance between an avant-garde design, and a practical and versatile development, with high performance • An ideal professional multi-juicer to operate in a large variety of contexts such as cafeterias, healthy food restaurants, cocktail bars, juice bars,... and even for the Premium household segment • Apart from its impressive redesign, the renewed Multifruit also combines innovative functionalities that improve the usability of this Premium multi-juicer, such as its practical countertop kit or the optimised removable tray

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ower and design join forces once again at the hand of ZUMEX®, which transfers the strength of the runways to its professional proposals for fashionable spaces. In this vein, the firm now introduces its novel Multifruit CHERRY, the Premium professional multi-juicer with the most chic and fun look, designed by the firm’s engineers and creative experts for fashionable premises and restaurants. A totally renovated machine, designed to create tendency, with a sporty and elegant design and new finishes, such as this intense cherry colour or the new control button to change speed, with a soft finish in brushed aluminium. The impressive redesign and personality of this machine achieve a perfect balance between an avant-garde design and a practical, versatile development, and with high performance. All of this converts it into the perfect proposal to operate in very different contexts such as cafeterias, healthy food restaurants, cocktail bars or juice bars...., an ideal element that has awoken interest too in the Premium household segment, which commit to design and also to a healthy diet. And if the attractive Multifruit CHERRY is the coolest challenge of this firm -world leaders in the design and manufacture of cutting-edge technology for fruit and vegetable juice extraction-, the sophisticated Multifruit Graphite stands out for its sober, but at the same time, modern style. Two new models in addition to the White, Black and Silver proposals that ZUMEX® had offered until now, and which will allow you to choose the 6 | January-February 2017 | Hotels & Culinary ASIA

colour that best matches your style and the style of your business. Multifruit is the most silent and powerful professional multi-juicer thanks to its Brushless motor and to its centre grating disc, as well as to the constant control of the power, facilitated by its two-speed Speed Control system (3500 rpm and 4500 rpm). Major national and international chains have already committed to this product, with which 1.8 litres of excellent quality and pulp-free juice per minute can be obtained. Juicing of all types of fruit and vegetables, such as apples, pineapples and kiwis, as well as carrots, celery and ginger.

None can resist it! Furthermore, ZUMEX®‘s new

proposals are presented with numerous innovations such as the possibility of having a countertop kit, which is very practical for premises with large juice productions, as it guarantees the intensive use of the multijuicer, enabling waste to be continuously removed to afford infinite autonomy. But the new machine also integrates a triple safety system (dual switch on handle and container, magnetic detector on waste bin and thermal protection system), and extra functionalities that improve the usability of this Premium multijuicer, such as the removable tray, with a new optimised design to collect possible drops and keep everything clean.

The new Multifruit universe has come to conquer you!


India Network: 43 Hotels - 18 Cities - 8 Brands


Celebrate this Valentine’s Day at Atlantis, The Palm to make it the most unique and memorable experiences 8 | January-February 2017 | Hotels & Culinary ASIA


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ith the hottest celebrity couples such as Mark Wright and Michelle Keegan, Kajol and Ajay Devgan to International Boxer Amir Khan and wife Faryal Makhtoom, experiencing the luxury offerings for couples at Atlantis, The Palm, the world’s leading entertainment resort is amongst the most romantic places in the world to celebrate Valentine’s Day. Named one of the Top Ten Places in the world to propose by leading travel experts, Destinology, Atlantis, The Palm has a variety of options from intimate dinners, luxurious spa treatments to amazing experiences, for lovebirds this Valentine’s holiday.

Valentine’s Day with a difference For the adrenaline junkie lovebirds, courageous duos can book a date night with the predators of the ocean with Atlantis DIVE. Couples can navigate the largest aquarium in the Middle East coming face to face with sharks, sting rays and 18,00 different kinds of fish. For those who like their hearts intact on Valentine’s Day, a less daring date with a hungry Sting Ray is also a great way to bond with an adventurous loved one. In need of an afternoon with the person that’s done everything in Dubai? The Royal Swim at Dolphin Bay is the ultimate date with a difference. Couples can enjoy a private session in the depths of the lagoon experiencing a range of fun activities including the foot push where these wonderful marine mammals glide guests magically across the waters using all of their strength and a dorsal tow, where guests are taken for a ride while they hold the dolphin’s dorsal fins. Top it off with a commemorative photo of the experience of a lifetime!

Fancy food options For those seeking a Valentine’s Day to remember, couples can book a candle lit cabana and dine under the stars on the romantic beachside at the Royal Beach. Providing the ideal Valentine setting with a bottle of champagne, chocolates, a three course dinner and a live performance, the perfect evening is complete with a little romantic stargazing. For something a little different, Ossiano, Atlantis, The Palm’s most romantic restaurant set against the mesmerizing tranquility created by the captivating ocean life of the Ambassador Lagoon - home to 65,000 marine species, the afternoon tea in Ossiano begins with a lavish serving of caviar and accompaniments including with blinis, crème fraiche, and cornichons plus much more. And if a proposal is on the cards? Why not get one of our skilled divers to propose to your sweetheart whilst you both enjoy dinner in the highly romantic underwater setting in Ossiano restaurant? Stay In An Atlantis Signature Suite With 30% Off And Receive AED 2,500 To Spend In The Resort When in your life can you say that your hotel room had a floor to ceiling window looking directly into a Lagoon with 65,000 marine animals? This is one of the many incredible features that the Atlantis Seven Signature Suites has to offer that truly defines a unique and luxurious holiday experience. Now is the time to live the high life; Get 30% off your stay in any of our Signature Suites, and as a lovely gift to you, receive AED 2,500 to spend around the resort. Hotels & Culinary ASIA | January-February 2017 | 9


Banyan Tree and AccorHotels announce strategic partnership Banyan Tree Holdings announces that it has entered into a heads of agreement with AccorHotels. Under a long-term partnership, both parties intend to collaborate to develop and manage Banyan Tree branded hotels around the world. Banyan Tree will also have access to AccorHotels’ global reservations and sales network, as well as its loyalty programme Le Club AccorHotels.

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ccorHotels will invest an initial SGD 24 million (c. €16 million) in Singapore-based Banyan Tree and both parties will then co-develop the brands owned by Banyan Tree around the world. This investment will be made through a mandatory convertible debenture that at conversion will give AccorHotels an approximately 5% stake in Banyan Tree. AccorHotels has an option to purchase an additional approximately 5% stake. Ho Kwon Ping, Executive Chairman of Banyan Tree, said: “This agreement is not only transformational for Banyan Tree, but is also an innovation for the global hospitality industry. With the current consolidation of mega hotel companies, smaller but also global 10 | January-February 2017 | Hotels & Culinary ASIA

players – many family-controlled – are also seeking strategic alliances with the global giants. Our strategic alliance with AccorHotels allows us to remain an independent company, enabling us to continue securing hotel management agreements on our own and yet accelerating Banyan Tree’s speed and scope of expansion but with AccorHotels helping us to grow our brands around the world. We believe this agreement will propel our brands rapidly to global reach and range and strengthen our ability to embrace change and innovation in the hospitality industry with a strong global partner. We are excited and committed to this partnership.”

Sebastien Bazin, CEO and Chairman of AccorHotels, said: “Our collaboration with Banyan Tree is a great opportunity to complement our business proposition to owners with iconic brands, while always better servicing our guests. Banyan Tree Holdings has created key leading positions across Asia with luxury resorts, one of the fastest growing segments in the industry. We will bring scale to the network through our ability to develop and manage hotels under the Banyan Tree brands globally, hence strengthening our leadership in the luxury hotel space. We are confident that our investment will create incremental value for our shareholders.”


Host 2017: The Gelato-Pastry selection gets wider within a synergistic concept with figures constantly on the rise A series of activities and an innovative training initiative for future Masters will make the experience of ice-cream makers and confectioners more effective

Hybridization is making business opportunities grow significantly thanks to a macro-area in which the Gelato-Pastry sector joins forces with the Coffee and Tea, Bars, and Coffee and Vending Machines sectors in an event full of training programmes. So far, this formula has led over 1,400 exhibitors (41% of whom are from overseas) to confirm their presence. 12 | January-February 2017 | Hotels & Culinary ASIA

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re ice-cream makers and confectioners the rising stars of food-andcooking shows? Figures and trends observed by HostMilano – the world’s top event for equipment, coffee and food – confirm so. And not just because they are ever more often the stars of TV cooking shows. A recent survey carried out by Statista in the USA has revealed some facts on eating-out behaviour in the U.S. The favourite dessert for 71% of Americans is homemade

ice-cream and for 40%, Italian gelato. And the record of Italian ice-cream machines confirms this success. ANIMA-Assofoodtec has estimated a 2016 turnover equal to Eur 325 million (+1.2%), 245 million of which from the export business alone (+2.5%). Moreover, innovative trends are opening up new prospects. Ice-cream parlours and pastry shops are increasingly providing a home delivery service through the most popular apps, and mini-portions are leading to new consumption opportunities.


The most effective formula for future markets A challenging scenario where icecream and pastry masters must also be entrepreneurs and managers. They must be able to combine technology, creativity, and highspecialisation, and have an overall picture of the latest food trends. They must always be focused on what happens worldwide, as trends and tastes have become global phenomena. This is why ice-cream makers and confectioners will find new professional opportunities at Host 2017 - Fieramilano, from 20 to 24 October. This international event, the only one in Italy of its kind, is divided into three macro-areas, which open up to new business opportunities, combining vertical

specialisation and continuous interactions and exchanges with related sectors. In particular, the Gelato-Pastry industry is included in a synergistic macro-area with the Coffee and Tea, Bars, and Coffee and Vending Machines sectors. The success of this concept lies in the figures. Currently, 1,437 companies, of which 41% from overseas, have already confirmed their presence. Exhibitors will come from all over the world. This year’s newcomers will be Belarus, Serbia, and Liechtenstein from Europe, and South Africa and Egypt from Africa, the market of the future. In fact, according to ONU’s estimates, in the near future, Africa’s GDP will increase with rates higher than 5% per year, whilst energy needs are increasing by 38%. This means that both industrial activities and

consumption are increasing. As for the countries with the largest presence, on the podium we have Germany with 86 companies (+26% compared to 68 in 2014), Spain, France, and USA, followed by the United Kingdom, Greece, Switzerland, Netherlands, Portugal, Austria and Sweden. The United States will participate with 44 companies (+47% compared to 30 in 2014), of which 9 will be taking part for the first time. The trend has been consistent in the last editions, thanks to the agreement with Commercial Service, the trade promotion arm of the U.S. Department of Commerce, which confirms its official certification. Confectioners, ice-cream makers, and chefs: the new stars

Due to hybridization between different formats, the industry players are required to be expert selectors of top-quality raw materials, to mix different culinary traditions, and to be the “archaeologists” of traditional local flavours. Consumers have been acknowledging the chefs’ authority for a long time now, and they are extending it also to master confectioners and ice-cream makers, three professional figures that sometimes tend to mix and merge. Host 2017 will focus especially on these categories. A series of activities and a training programme called “Obiettivo Apprendistato,” (Objective Apprenticeship) will make the experience more effective. In fact, with this programme, HostMilano, together

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with APCI (Association of Professional Italian Chefs), aims to help aspiring chefs and hotel school students qualify for their future job. This project involves 100 schools and at least 1,000 hotel school graduates, and will select the most talented ones for internships in the most prestigious kitchens. The coffee sector holds a special place among the hybridization opportunities provided by this macro-area. A whole area, SIC - Salone Internazionale del Caffè (International Coffee Trade Fair) will be dedicated to this business. For 24 editions now, this event has been the point of reference for the entire supply chain - from the producers to the distributors of green coffee, through to roasters and manufacturers of coffee machines - presenting innovation and top level training. Success is guaranteed by the associations involved - Altoga and Fipe, International Hub for Coffee Research and Innovation, Scae and Wce - as well as by the exhibitors, from large companies to small roasters. This is an important resource to counter the crises of generalist bars. These see quality, innovation, and specialisation as the key 14 | January-February 2017 | Hotels & Culinary ASIA

to face the challenges posed by the modern consumer.

Championships, courses and cooking shows will season the event Professional visitors (150,968 in 2015, from 172 countries) will find plenty of business and training opportunities and will be able to attend high-profile events. So don’t miss out on the Cake Designers World Championship and World Trophy of Pastry, Ice Cream and Chocolate in collaboration with FIPGC - International Federation Pastry Ice Cream Chocolate. In the catering industry, CHIC - Charming Italian Chef - will talk about sustainability in all the stages of the supply chain. Identità Future, in collaboration with Identità Golose, will also make a comeback. Finally, don’t miss out on the European Pizza Championship organised by Pizza e Pasta Italiana. The two contests organised in collaboration with POLI.design, a consortium at Milan’s Polytechnic

University, have been confirmed once again this year: SmartLabel, the coveted prize awarded to products that stand out for their innovation within the professional hospitality business; and HOSThinking, a design award, now at its third edition. With the title 10 Designers for 100 Products, young designers will develop futuristic hospitality innovations live at the show. The 10 most innovative products will be selected. HostMilano is the perfect place where you can discover new food, hospitality and retail trends. A world that gathers in the pavilions of fieramilano every two years, but that continues to improve and develop during the two preparatory years, with web and social events at which industry players can meet and interact.

For more information about HostMilano visit, www.host.fieramilano.it


ONE&ONLY REETHI RAH LAUNCHES

HEALTH RETREATS WITH ELITE PERSONAL TRAINER HARRY JAMESON IN 2017 One&Only, the award-winning collection of ultra-luxury resorts, has partnered with elite personal trainer and health and fitness expert Harry Jameson, to create three exclusive retreats at One&Only Reethi Rah in the Maldives next year. With the first retreat taking place in January, there is no better way to kick start the New Year than with a health and lifestyle overhaul in the unique and beautiful island playground of One&Only Reethi Rah. 16 | January-February 2017 | Hotels & Culinary ASIA

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he Jameson Retreat combines science, fitness and diet to deliver a personalised programme with long lasting effects. A far cry from quick fix retreats, guests will embark on a comprehensive journey, expertly curated from significant pre-departure data analysis that sees them re-evaluate their lifestyles and maximise their health and fitness for the long term. “We are delighted to be working with Harry Jameson to offer exclusive health and fitness retreats for our guests. This partnership allows us to take wellness, which is part of our DNA, to the next level, ensuring our guests leave with both everlasting memories and an improved sense of wellbeing,” commented Jean-Luc Naret, General Manager, One&Only Reethi Rah. “One&Only Reethi Rah is the perfect location for this experience – with our private villas located over-water or along pristine beaches, an award-winning spa and incredible cuisine, all surrounded by the crystal clear waters of the Indian Ocean – it truly is the pinnacle of tropical luxury. Nowhere else in the Maldives is there a resort with this much space and exclusivity.” Harry Jameson, an award-winning personal trainer, health


and fitness expert, and his team, provide the very best in personal training, strength and conditioning, and health and lifestyle management services for his clients based in London, as well as all around the world. A firm believer in training the mind as well as the body to drive maximum results, Harry’s meticulous approach to training clients is based on psychological scientific foundations obtained through a degree in sports science and psychology alongside his own personal research and development. Furthermore, the Jameson concept is enhanced by Harry’s selection of handpicked health partners who join together to assess, create and facilitate life-changing results.

The first Jameson Retreat will take place from 15 to 21 January 2017, and guests who book will undergo a full body biometric and physiological pre-departure assessment, including 72 hour sleep monitoring, body composition and anthropometric measurements, nutritional and intolerance testing and an oxidative stress biomarker with breath analysis. Based on this data, a bespoke lifestyle programme will be created for the upcoming retreat, and guests will embark on a personalised journey of fitness, nutrition and relaxation whilst at One&Only Reethi Rah. The retreat itself will include daily one-to-one personal

training with Harry and his team, yoga, stretching and therapeutic meditation, perfectly balanced with specially tailored cuisine and freshly prepared antioxidant shakes designed to cleanse and de-stress the mind. Guests will also benefit from plenty of free time to enjoy the beautiful resort. Once guests return home, they will remain in close contact with their assigned trainer as they are guided through the five week aftercare training package. Repeat testing and a 60 minute training session is available for those living in London, and Skype sessions are offered for those living outside of the UK. “I have always wanted to expand what we do and work with a hospitality partner. I am so excited to be working with the One&Only brand and to start this partnership with retreats to the beautiful island of One&Only Reethi Rah,” says Harry Jameson. “I am so passionate about the health and wellbeing of my clients and am delighted

to be able to offer these retreats to truly make an impact on their lives. I pride myself in improving both mental and physical strength, looking at everything from sleep quality and concentration levels to digestive health and hydration, to ultimately make my clients lead a happier life.” Set on one of the largest islands in North Malé Atoll in The Maldives, the all-villa One&Only Reethi Rah resort offers an unparalleled array of luxurious options to create an unforgettable holiday. Sleek and spectacular, with unprecedented privacy, One&Only Reethi Rah inspires extraordinary journeys for the soul. From extensive outdoor adventure options including snorkelling and diving in the exotic underwater world, to the mesmerizing One&Only Spa which features the Barber&Blade grooming and shaving studio, guests are spoilt for choice. The resort has also recently introduced

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private sunrise yoga classes on a secluded sandbank, ‘foot rehab’ – a new concept created by the resident yoga instructor and the Bastien Gonzalez podiatrist, which combines yoga and foot massage, and Spa Courtyard featuring a vitality pool, outdoor sauna and steam room. These additions and the Jameson Retreat further highlight the resort’s constant drive to innovate and ensure their guests’ health and wellbeing is always kept top of mind. The resort has recently launched #MyOOsuperfoods which is available daily at Reethi restaurant during breakfast hours and is perfect for those guests wanting to continue a healthy eating regime, whilst being on holiday. The Fitness Centre offers both indoor and outdoor areas spanning 320m2 equipped with the Technogym ARTIS range and QUEENAX both a first in the Maldives when they were introduced in 2014. Guests have complimentary use of a variety of facilities such as canoes, kayaks, pedaloes and windsurfing. Other water-based sports available for a fee include banana and tube rides, water-skiing, paragliding and deep-sea fishing. Back on dry land, guests can play beach volleyball, football, and tennis, and bicycles are given to each guest to explore the island’s 44 hectares.

The Jameson Retreat includes: · Pre-departure testing and analysis · Six night stay at One&Only Reethi Rah · Bespoke welcome pack · Daily morning fast cardio session · Daily yoga/pilates session with master trainer · Daily 1:1 personal training session · Daily 60 minute Swedish Massage · Tailored meals, full board (excluding drinks) · Daily freshly pressed antioxidant smoothie · Daily fresh fruit basket · Daily option of additional sports · Dedicated aftercare

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Prices start from US$13,841 per person for the six-night retreat at One&Only Reethi Rah from 15 - 21 January 2017 on a full-board basis, based on two people sharing a Beach Villa. Price does not include flights. Additional retreats will run from 14 - 20 May and 8 – 14 October 2017, bookable now. For terms and conditions, more information or to make a reservation, email reservations@oneandonlyreethirah.com, call +960 664 8800 or visit oneandonlyresorts.com.


AccorHotels

reaches 45 Hotels milestone in India

Adds ten new hotels and resorts across various brand segments for network growth AccorHotels today announced that it has reached its 45 hotels and resorts milestone network growth across India. The recent openings of Hotel Formule1 in Nashik and Chennai marked the establishment of a widespread, multibrand and segment of hotels operating in 18 cities with the portfolio depth ranging from luxury and midscale to in-demand economy brand segments. Ten of AccorHotels globally acclaimed brands have a presence in India, with ibis Styles making its debut earlier in 2016 with the opening of a 197-rooms hotel in Goa. AccorHotels will continue to accelerate its robust development pipeline in place for 2017 which will see an additional ten hotels bringing its network growth to over 55 properties. 20 | January-February 2017 | Hotels & Culinary ASIA

AccorHotels is well positioned across all segments with a presence across India’s leading business hubs and leisure destinations. The group now has an 8,000 room inventory across its ten brands, which include Fairmont, Sofitel, Pullman, Swissôtel, Grand Mercure, Novotel, Mercure, ibis, ibis Styles and Formule1. AccorHotels growth strategy in India is led by its focus on the midscale segment with the Novotel brand which celebrated its tenth-year anniversary presence in India this year and the popular in-demand economy brand, ibis. There are currently 28 hotels operating under the Novotel and Ibis brands across various key cities in India. Jean-Michel Cassé, Senior Vice President, Operations, AccorHotels India said, “Our strong network growth of 45 hotels and resorts across India is a milestone achievement with the quest to deepen our roots in the country. We have adopted the born in France made in


India approach by growing more AccorHotels properties across the country with a projected growth of over 10,000 rooms across India in 2017 with a presence in Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities.” This year, AccorHotels completed a decade of successful operations in the country. The group’s legacy in India dates back to 2006 with the opening of the 287 room Novotel Hyderabad Convention Centre in the City of Nizams. In 2015, the group has grown its network to 35 hotels and resorts across India and added another 10 hotels this year. Openings in 2016 include ibis Chennai City Centre, Mercure Hyderabad KCP, Grand Mercure Mysuru, The Bheemili Resort managed by AccorHotels, ibis Hyderabad HITEC City, ibis Styles Goa Calangute, Hotel Formule1 Nashik and Hotel Formule1 Chennai. The acquisition of FRHI earlier this year resulted in the addition of two iconic brands - Fairmont Jaipur and Swissôtel Kolkata, to the AccorHotels growing portfolio while also boosting the Group’s presence in the luxury segment in the country. “As we move forward, densification remains a major growth strategy for AccorHotels in India, with the intent to be a leader in the markets we operate in. In 2016, we emerged as the largest hotel operator in major cities such as Hyderabad and Goa. We will continue to increase our growth presence across major cities in 2017.” Jean-Michel Cassé added.

ACCORHOTELS IN INDIA In India, AccorHotels operates a network of 10 distinctive brands underpinned by operational excellence, while embracing its European heritage. With 45 hotels across key destinations in the country, AccorHotels is uniquely placed as the only international hotel group with brands that span across all segments from luxury to budget. As the leader in operating hotels and convention centres,

AccorHotels currently manages the Hyderabad International Convention Centre, Lavasa International Convention Centre and Novotel Visakhapatnam The, the largest all-sea facing convention centre on the east coast of India supporting the growing MICE market segment. Additionally, AccorHotels will add the Jaipur Exhibition & Convention Centre in its portfolio towards the later part of this year.

ABOUT ACCORHOTELS AccorHotels is a world-leading travel & lifestyle group and digital innovator offering unique experiences in more than 4,000 hotels, resorts and residences, as well as in over 2,600 of the finest private homes around the globe. Benefiting from dual expertise as an investor and operator through its HotelServices and HotelInvest divisions, AccorHotels operates in 95 countries. Its portfolio comprises internationally acclaimed luxury brands including Raffles, Fairmont, Sofitel Legend, SO Sofitel, Sofitel, onefinestay, MGallery by Sofitel, Pullman, and Swissôtel; as well as the popular midscale and boutique brands of Novotel, Mercure, Mama Shelter and Adagio; the in-demand economy brands including ibis, ibis

Styles, ibis budget and the regional brands Grand Mercure, The Sebel and hotelF1. With an unmatched collection of brands and rich history spanning close to five decades, AccorHotels, along with its global team of more than 240,000 dedicated women and men, has a purposeful and heartfelt mission: to make every guest Feel Welcome. Guests enjoy access to one of the world’s most rewarding hotel loyalty programs - Le Club AccorHotels. AccorHotels is active in its local communities and committed to sustainable development and solidarity through PLANET 21, a comprehensive program that brings together employees, guests and partners to drive sustainable growth. Accor SA is publicly listed with shares trading on the Euronext Paris exchange (ISIN code: FR0000120404) and the OTC marketplace (Code: ACRFY) in the United States. For more information and reservations visit accorhotels.group or accorhotels. com. Or become a fan and follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

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SIR PETER BLAKE CREATES BESPOKE COLLAGE FOR MANDARIN ORIENTAL HYDE PARK, LONDON ‘Our Fans’ by Sir Peter Blake takes up residence on Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park, London’s Knightsbridge façade during part of the extensive renovation of this historic hotel. European flagship hotel,” said Jill Kluge, Mandarin Oriental’s Group Director of Brand Communications. “Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park is part of the fabric of London life, and this exciting renovation project is designed to confirm it as one of the leading luxury hotels in the world. Sir Peter Blake’s artistic masterpiece not only pays tribute to the city, but also celebrates the Group’s global reach, in a truly original way,” she added.

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ir Peter Blake, a leading figure in the art world, and often referred to as the ‘Godfather of British Pop Art’, has been commissioned by Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group to create a collage which will cover Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park, London’s iconic façade during part of the hotel’s comprehensive phased renovation. The immense collage entitled Our Fans, has been created to provide an eye-catching diversion along Knightsbridge. Our Fans, the largest artwork Sir Peter Blake has ever created, is a collage of 100 prominent faces, from Morgan Freeman and Helen Mirren to Joanna Lumley and Jenny Packham. All are regular guests at Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park, London as well as fans of the Group’s hotels around the world. “Some of my first works were collages of crowds of people; this piece is in the spirit of The Beatles 1967 Sergeant Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band album,”

said Sir Peter Blake, the artist responsible for this iconic album cover. It is therefore entirely apt that Sir Paul McCartney and fellow Beatles’ bandmate Ringo Starr should feature in the poster, during the 50th anniversary of the album. The collage has become Blake’s trademark format and one that he has returned to time and again over the years. “This artwork was very different to my usual way of working”, he said. “A collage is very time consuming and laborious, but this was more a matter of arranging the figures and making them work together making sure no one had a cut-off shoulder or missing legs - that’s the skill of it. It was an amazing project to work on. Hopefully, people passing by will try to spot celebrities they recognize,” he added. Displayed prominently on the front of the building, this striking work is a visual treat. “We are delighted to showcase this original piece by such a talented artist in London, the home of our

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Mandarin Oriental’s creative advertising agency, LONDON advertising, created the concept of the poster, and interviewed Sir Peter Blake about this project. Click hereto view the interview.

Fun Facts about ‘Our Fans’ This piece of art is the size of 38 double decker buses at 70.7m wide and 24.88m high. It weighs over 1055kg and has taken over 10 hours to install. Morgan Freeman, Sir Peter Blake, Sir Paul McCartney are over 15 metres tall. All the confetti pieces are made up of small multi-coloured fans.

About Sir Peter Blake Born in 1932 in Dartford, Kent, Sir Peter attended Gravesend School of Art before earning a place at the prestigious Royal College of Art London in 1956. His love of art flourished as he built up a respectable portfolio of work through extensive travels across Europe and beyond. Blake came to the public’s attention and the centre of the London art scene with his first solo exhibition in the 1960’s. His work has featured icons of popular culture from around the world and is

appreciated globally. In 1983 he became a CBE and in 2002 received a knighthood for his services to art.

About the restoration of Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park, London Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group has embarked on a comprehensive multimillionpound restoration of its European flagship Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park, London, designed to confirm this historic hotel’s position as one of the best in the world. The hotel remains open throughout the renovation which will be completed in Spring 2018. International designer, Joyce Wang, has been commissioned to oversee the overall design concept, and has taken her inspiration from the hotel’s royal heritage and peaceful parkside location, as well as the glamour of the early 20th century’s Golden Age of travel.

About Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group is the award-winning owner and operator of some of the world’s most luxurious hotels, resorts and residences. Having grown from its Asian roots into a global brand, the Group now operates 29 hotels and eight residences in 19 countries and territories, with each property reflecting the Group’s oriental heritage and unique sense of place. Mandarin Oriental has a strong pipeline of hotels and residences under development, with the next hotel opening planned in Doha.


The Bread and the Cake of the Year 2017 will be awarded at GastroPan exhibition in March

Numerous bakers and pastry chefs from all over Romania will enter the competition for awarding the best bread and the tastiest cake at Expo GastroPan. The GastroPan Competitions will take place within the biggest exhibition for the bakery, confectionery, hospitality and food service sectors, March 23rd-25th, 2017, at Redal Expo, in Sibiu city, Romania. Out of the 9 competition categories, the most important both for contestants and the public are the categories awarding the Bread and the Cake of the Year 2017. Beyond the trophies and prizes offered by the organizers and the sponsors to winners, they will also benefit of a promotion campaign. Also, the recipe of the Cake of the Year will be used in several pastry and cake shops in Romania, thus reaching a large number of customers.

The tastiest cake made of exotic ingredients will be the Cake of the Year 2017 The competition for choosing the best cake of this year challenges contestants to create an innovative cake made of exotic ingredients, having an exquisite and original taste. The theme of this category is Exotic Cakes. The pastry shop that makes the Cake of the Year will benefit of a promotion campaign in mass media. Any pastry shop will have the possibility to bake and sell the winning cake after the exhibition, provided they use the original recipe and the name „Cake of the Year 2017 - GastroPan”.

The best artisan and industrial breads will also be awarded GastroPan Competitions 2017 will bring back equal chances for both artisan and industrial bakeries, as both will have the opportunity to win the trophy Bread of Year 2017, the competition being divided this year too into two

different categories, according to the quantity of bread produced daily and the method of bread production – artisan or industrial. Therefore, both the talented bakers working in smaller producing facilities and the investments in research and development made by industrial producers will be appreciated. Contestants representing industrial bakeries with a minimum daily production of 300 kg of bread will enter the competition for winning the Industrial Bread of the Year 2017 made in Romania, while contestants representing artisan bakeries with a maximum daily production of 100 kg of bread will compete for winning Artisan Bread of the Year 2017 made in Romania. The judges will make a decision based on organoleptic properties (form, aspect, and crumb and crust structure, taste) and the innovative character of the product. The winners will benefit of a promotion campaign in mass media, the

winning bakeries benefiting from more brand awareness and consumers gaining access to new types of bread. GastroPan exhibition can be visited between 10:00 – 18:00, March 23-25 2017, in Sibiu, Romania. The exhibition will present the largest variety of products, solutions and technologies: from the latest equipment and technologies, ingredients and innovative accessories, IT solutions and products, professional hygiene solutions to packaging and utensils for cake decorating. For more information and access tickets visit www.gastropan.ro For more information and pictures taken at the last editions of GastroPan visit www.gastropan. ro, or contact the organizers: tel. +40266-219.392, mobile +40787-677.310, +40733313.043 or e-mail info@gastropan. ro

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Visit St. Moritz to witness a different way of playing Cricket - on Ice! “Cricket on Ice” is set to take place on the frozen lake of St. Moritz yet again in 2017 from 23rd – 25th February. Incepted in 1988, Cricket on Ice was the brainchild of a few British enthusiasts who challenged the students of the international boarding school Lyceum Alpinum Zuoz to a match. Ever since, the cricket festival on a frozen lake has been attracting international players and participants from all over the world. 26 | January-February 2017 | Hotels & Culinary ASIA

On Lake St. Moritz, the game of cricket is played a little differently. Instead of whites, the players wear warm tracksuits. The ball is made of hard rubber, because traditional leather would become wet, heavy and unpredictable on the snow. The pitch is artificial grass on an oval-shaped cricket ground. The game consists of twenty overs per inning; bowlers are limited to four overs. As the sport offers a different setting, it also demands a considerable amount of skill and agility from the players. The cricket played is a competitive, but amateur, level and depends a lot on fairness and the spirit of friendship between the teams. For more information please visit: http://www.cricket-on-ice.com/

The Engadin St. Moritz Tourism Organisation What mountains. What space. What light! The Engadin St. Moritz Region offers a great variety of sports and leisure activities, as well as a delicious local cuisine, a rich and lively cultural scene, and a busy programme of events. The region’s unique appeal lies in the combination of St. Moritz, the most scintillating mountain resort in the world, and the inspiring high alpine valley of the Engadin. The Engadin St. Moritz Tourism Organisation is responsible for marketing the whole destination in defined target markets. In all, the Engadin St. Moritz Tourism Organisation employs around 60 staff.


AccorHotels makes Serena Williams Feel Welcome for second year in a row AccorHotels reaps benefits of sponsorship with tennis legend

integrated marketing campaign,” says Issenberg. “Our hotels in Melbourne have never been busier and there is a buzz amongst staff and guests really getting into the spirit of the game.

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erena Williams, arguably the greatest tennis player of all time, is AccorHotels’ Official Ambassador for the Australian Open for the second year in a row. As part of a multi-million dollar sponsorship that includes billboard signage, digital and print advertisements across Australia, AccorHotels is complementing the relationship with a first of its kind deal with Fox Sports that will take viewers behind-the-scenes to see how Serena prepares for the tournament. “I am so proud to be the official Ambassador for AccorHotels in Australia for a second year,” said Serena Williams. “No matter where I stay, I always Feel Welcome with AccorHotels.” As one of the most recognised

faces in the world, Serena Williams has been World Number One six times and holds 38 major titles – more than any other tennis player, male or female. She is currently chasing her 23rd Grand Slam singles title which would put her one Grand Slam title away from Margaret Court with the most singles titles ever held. Serena was the highest-paid female athlete of 2016, has graced the cover of Vogue and was Sports Illustrated’s Sportsperson of the Year in 2015, so it is fair to say she is much more than a great tennis player – she is a real icon and a symbol of empowerment around the world. “Serena embodies style, success, drive and athleticism and we are honoured to have

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her as our Ambassador,” said Michael Issenberg, Chairman & CEO AccorHotels Asia Pacific. “AccorHotels has sponsorships across a range of sports, but there is no one quite like Serena who not only excels on the tennis court, but in the fields of film, television, fashion and philanthropy. She is a true inspiration and we are thrilled to have our brands associated with her.” AccorHotels is also Official Partner of the Australian Open, providing concierge and information services for fans and players, and accommodation packages for fans attending the tennis. “We are already reaping the benefits of our sponsorship of Tennis Australia and Serena Williams thanks to a fully

The Australian Open is the largest annual sporting event in the southern hemisphere and provides a huge boost to tourism in Australia, with last year’s event adding $278.1m to the Victorian economy. AccorHotels previously offered members of its Le Club AccorHotels loyalty program an exclusive opportunity to meet Serena Williams at the So Sofitel Singapore and Sofitel Melbourne on Collins where she posed for photos with fans. AccorHotels is the largest hotel operator in Australia, with 200 hotels including over 30 in Victoria alone and more than 700 across Asia Pacific. To book your accommodation go to www.accorhotels.com


Ashish R Thadani, CEO, Absolute Speciality Ashish knows what it takes to draw a crowd in Chennai, good food is what we are talking about. An entrepreneur from the start, Ashish always had zeal to make it big in hospitality sector. Today, he is the CEO of one of the most hyped and successful hospitality names in India. It all started with logistics sector, transporting steel from Hazira, Gujarat and moving into the auto logistics space in 1995 with DCM Daewoo, Tata Motors, M&M and Ford. The Chennai chapter began in 1999 where he handled Ford India’s complete outbound logistics platform. With desire to do something new and creative, Ashish along with his wife came up with the big idea and with established Absolute Homes, to provide serviced apartments for corporate travellers to Chennai. Soon after, Ashish entered into a JV with Mr. V Jaggannathan of Ramaniyam Real Estates in 2012, to create Grey Suit, a business hotel in Kakavakkam, on the outskirts of Chennai and a boutique property in Central Chennai. Since Ashish was always passionate and positive about his visions in hospitality sector, 2014 came as a turning point in this career. The fruitful partnership with Mr. Jaggannathan extended into the restaurant business L’amandier, a French Bistro on Chamiers Road, Chennai’s first all-day Bistro. Recognising the emergence in India of a rapidly growing tribe of urban, health conscious sports and food aficionados, Absolute Speciality joined hands in 2015 with TI Cycles, to create Ciclo Cafe, India’s first bicycling cafe. Starting in Chennai, the cafe has become a landmark on the busy Kotturpuram Main Road, and the hub of a bustling cycling community. Ciclo Café reflects Ashish’s creativity and innovation that missions to bring all cyclist enthusiast and food lovers together. Ciclo Café’s second outlet now opens its gate for Hyderabad gentry. Ashish himself is a passionate amateur cyclist and recently completed a 1000 km brevet from Hyderabad.

Visit

Hong Kong Outbound – 2016 buoyant, 2017 Positive Outlook, and face to face with travel trade and Affluent FIT in ITE Hong Kong Substantial in size and high in per capita spending, in 2015, Hong Kong spent US$22.9 billion on international travel and ranked Asia’s 3rd largest / World’s 11th largest source market! In fact, affluent FIT dominates the city’s outbound! In 2016, Hong Kong citizens made 91.76 million departures, up 3%, of which 11.29 million departed at the airport, up 8%, so on average, a Hong Kong citizen made 12.7 departures! Also, Hong Kong’s travel agents reported their outbound business grew 4% last year including Christmas! A buoyant year! Latest statistics indicated growth will likely be continued into 2017! Travel agents projected outbound business during Chinese New Year 2017 grow by 3 to 5%, despite prices of regular tour rise 2% and luxury tours up to 35%! A travel portal reported bookings for outbound flights in the same period jumped 20% as compared to last year! Statistics thus indicated FIT grow faster than tour groups! Hong Kong’s only travel fair, ITE, is being held each year in June. It’s two trade days draw 12000 regional buyers and visitors from the travel and MICE industries, and the two public days 88000 visitors. Meet trade and FIT face to face in ITE, and enquire about our B2B and B2C programs! Providing regular information like frequencies and preferences on Hong Kong outbound travelers, the ITE public visitor survey collected over 4000 replies in 2016. It found 84% prefer traveling in FIT or private group; 44% respondents reported having three to five holidays in past year, another 10% six holidays or more, and only 3% no holiday! When they buy FIT travel products, 62% of respondents book directly with suppliers like airlines, hotels and even overseas land operators, 38% with travel agents, and 47% with online travel agents (OTA). Online communications in English not a problem as ITE public visitors are highly educated (44% university and 24% post-secondary)! The survey also confirmed ITE is their important source of information etc - 76% plan holidays, 37% make booking and 25% attend seminars in ITE! Held in ITE trade days are over 20 trade/MICE seminars, and in public days over 100 seminars with the most popular ones each attracting 200 audiences!

HOTELEX Shanghai 2017 For more information: http://en.hotelex.cn/ 30 | January-February 2017 | Hotels & Culinary ASIA

ITE Hong Kong 2017, which comprises of the 31st ITE (leisure) and the 12th ITE MICE, will be held from June 15 to 18 at Halls 1A to 1E of the Hong Kong Convention & Exhibition Center. Please visit www.itehk. com for details including profiles of trade, MICE and FIT visitors, and their preferences on various travel themes. Organized by TKS Exhibition Services Ltd, ITE is supported by China National Tourism Administration, Hong Kong Tourism Board, Macao Government Tourism Office, travel and MICE associations in the region. Inquiry, please contact TKS Email: travel@tkshk.com | Phone: +852 31550600.


Get Ready To Battle For The Ultimate Prize In Football Win Four Tickets to UEFA Championship League Finals + Flights & Accommodation in Cardiff Imagine yourself in a front-row seat at one of the most coveted experiences for football fans – the heart-stopping finals of the 2017 UEFA Champions League in Cardiff. AccorHotels Asia Pacific and Mastercard have joined together to make this unforgettable experience a reality for four fans with ‘The Ultimate Rivals’ campaign. Exclusive to Asia Pacific, the campaign, driven across social media platforms, leverages the popularity and reach of the UEFA Champions League to members of the Le Club AccorHotels loyalty program and Mastercard cardholders. Participants are invited to create a team of two to four players to enter ‘The Ultimate Rivals’ league and compete against other teams to win points. They can earn extra points by booking and staying in more than 750 AccorHotels properties across Asia Pacific when paying with Mastercard, or by playing Striker’s Instinct, an exciting online game and answering trivia questions. The team with the highest points will walk away with four coveted tickets to the UEFA Champions League finals on 11 May 2017, as well as four flights to Cardiff, Wales and a three-night’s stay in an AccorHotels property. There are also weekly prizes to be won, giving more participants a chance to share in this amazing football experience. “Developing relationships with strategic partners not only extends the reach of our brands, it is also a key marketing lever for us, especially when we can provide value-added and creative propositions for our guests and members,” said Michael Parsons, Vice President Marketing and Strategic Relationships, AccorHotels Asia Pacific. “The partnership with Mastercard has reaped tremendous win-win benefits for customers of both brands. Importantly, it has also provided us with access to priceless experiences, which we use to develop exciting campaigns for our guests. We are very excited to give our guests and Le Club members the opportunity to experience one of the world’s most prestigious sporting events. We look forward to seeing the response of football fans across the region.” Nagesh Devata, Senior Vice President, Merchant Development and Acceptance Expansion, Asia Pacific, Mastercard, said, “Football is one of the most popular sports across Asia Pacific, and amongst our cardholders. The partnership with AccorHotels enables us to create priceless experiences and connect our cardholders to their greatest passions, while providing them with safe, secure and convenient payment solutions. With its large presence across the region, our partnership with AccorHotels is another step forward in driving top-of-wallet preference with our cardholders, both at home and when they travel.” The campaign will begin on 8 February 2017 on www.theultimaterivals. com and will be available across 10 countries - Australia, New Zealand, China, India, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand - as well as across Facebook and WeChat. The site is desktop and mobile-friendly, and available in English, Mandarin, Japanese, Korean, Thai and Bahasa Indonesia.

About AccorHotels AccorHotels is a world-leading travel & lifestyle group and digital innovator offering unique experiences in more than 4,000 hotels, resorts and residences, as well as in over 2,600 of the finest private homes around the globe. Benefiting from dual expertise as an investor and operator through its HotelServices and HotelInvest divisions, AccorHotels operates in 95 countries. Its portfolio comprises internationally acclaimed luxury brands including Raffles, Fairmont, Sofitel Legend, SO Sofitel, Sofitel, onefinestay, MGallery by Sofitel, Pullman, and Swissôtel; as well as the popular midscale and boutique brands of Novotel, Mercure, Mama Shelter and Adagio; the in-demand economy brands including ibis, ibis Styles, ibis budget and the regional brands Grand Mercure, The Sebel and hotelF1. With an unmatched collection of brands and rich history spanning close to five decades, AccorHotels, along with its global team of more than 240,000 dedicated women and men, has a purposeful and heartfelt mission: to make every guest Feel Welcome. Guests enjoy access to one of the world’s most rewarding hotel loyalty programs - Le Club AccorHotels. AccorHotels is active in its local communities and committed to sustainable development and solidarity through PLANET 21, a comprehensive program that brings together employees, guests and partners to drive sustainable growth. For more information and reservations visit accorhotels.group or accorhotels. com. Or become a fan and follow us on Twitter and Facebook. About Mastercard Mastercard (NYSE: MA), www.Mastercard.com, is a technology company in the global payments industry. We operate the world’s fastest payments processing network, connecting consumers, financial institutions, merchants, governments and businesses in more than 210 countries and territories. Mastercard products and solutions make everyday commerce activities – such as shopping, traveling, running a business and managing finances – easier, more secure and more efficient for everyone. Follow us on Twitter @MastercardNews, join the discussion on the Beyond the Transaction Blog and subscribe for the latest news on the Engagement Bureau. Hotels & Culinary ASIA | January-February 2017 | 31


Is Hospitality Becoming More Fragile or More Resilient? By 2030, multiple changes will occur and will influence the hospitality industry due to global changes, one of them being an increase of vulnerability. The second thesis of the Lausanne Report, EHL - in cooperation with hospitality experts - discuss this trend that may disrupt the industry depending on its ability to cope with external and internal threats.

One of the main challenges the hospitality industry is facing is the magnitude of hazardous events as well as their unpredictability. The industry is thus confronted to how fast it can react and adapt to such crises and hazard.

To create resilience, the industry will need to focus on:

SCENARIO A: FRAGILE HOSPITALITY The hospitality industry’s vulnerability to a variety of events could increase, which might transform hospitality into a fragile business. Among the most dangerous threats to the sector are climate change, safety and security issues, wild card events (e.g. SARS) as well as unprecedented migration streams. Here are some key rationales regarding a fragile hospitality: • Hazardous events often produce knock-on effects such as climate change which has negative impacts on various areas from polluted water, to health issues and poor living conditions • Climate change also triggers conflicts such as refugee migration and humanitarian crises, which lead to political and social tensions. • Once disruption has occurred, it is difficult and takes time to recover and build up resilience • The evaluation and prediction of future risks relies on data, but hotels lack resources • Hotel stress tests will impact market valuation and brand value of hotels • Vulnerability assessments will highlight a hotel’s exposure to threats and its capacity to deal with crises

SCENARIO B: CREATING RESILIENCE Vulnerability is based on two dimensions: direct and indirect damages. Direct losses include damage on the building, infrastructure or equipment of a company due to a hazardous event. On the other hand, indirect losses involve a competitive disadvantage of the company over nonaffected competitors as well as the overall reputation of the damaged business. 32 | January-February 2017 | Hotels & Culinary ASIA

• Quantifying its vulnerability, keeping in mind that indirect losses can be 3 to 10 times higher than direct losses • Use the results of the assessment in order to develop recovery measures, emergency plans, and vulnerability reduction strategies •Leverage the Internet of Things (IoT) and IT systems to control all relevant infrastructural components • Be capable of disconnecting hotel properties from the public infrastructure in order to not be further damaged or intruded • Master big data to assess the hospitality industry’s exposure to threats • Establish an exchange of data between the public and the private sector to manage the risks on the infrastructure

LET’S CO-EXIST Vulnerability assessments, security planning, stress tests and security infrastructure will push the hospitality industry in becoming more resilient. As guests do not want to feel overwhelmed by clearly visible security measures, hotels have started to use different, less-intrusive precautions. Although hotels that will choose to be more resilient will be in a more favorable position, it does not guarantee success in case of disruptive events. In such situations, EVEN Hotels with top security infrastructures and measures might not be enough to encourage guests to travel.

ABOUT ECOLE HÔTELIÈRE DE LAUSANNE (EHL)

Ecole hôtelière de Lausanne (EHL) is an ambassador for traditional Swiss hospitality and has been a pioneer in hospitality education since 1893. It has created and inspired a unique professional community of 25,000 hospitality managers, united by the values and the legacy of EHL. EHL offers five academic programs; a Bachelor, a Master of Science, an MBA, an Executive MBA and a Master Class. The academic portfolio is developed to evolve and adapt to the needs of both the industry and the students, and offers a wide range of possibilities that make an EHL education flexible and accessible to young talents from all around the world. EHL is regularly recognized as the best hotel management school in the world, offering university studies to over 2,600 enthusiastic and talented students from 107 different nationalities. EHL is a member of EHL SA, a Group dedicated to hospitality management education.


Performance Reviews: The Real Story

Angela Campiere

Working Group progresses on the Convention on the Protection of Tourists

We’re a month into the new year, which means two things: The days are getting longer and your annual performance review is probably approaching. According to a new survey by Adobe, 88 percent of U.S. office workers have a regularly scheduled, structured, and written performance review process at their current organization. And one in four of them said they would gladly switch jobs to a company that didn’t have that formal review process in place, even at the same pay and job level.

What’s not to like?

One of the main reasons employees don’t find traditional performance reviews useful is because they see them as a waste of time. According to the survey, almost 60 percent of workers say that their performance review has no impact on how they do their job and instead puts them in competition with their colleagues, giving their manager the opportunity to play favorites. This lack of trust in the performance-review process leads to negative reactions once the reviews are given. And these reactions are strongest among the men in the study: Men are more likely to cry after a performance review (25 percent), look for another job (43 percent), or even outright quit (28 percent).

So what’s the alternative?

Today’s increasingly connected world breeds an expectation of instantaneous feedback and that’s where the traditional performance review falls short. Instead of waiting until the standard review time, 80 percent of employees in the study said they want feedback “in the moment” to help them improve in their jobs. More timely feedback allows both employees and managers to address issues, problems, or opportunities in the moment, leading to more engagement from employees and more trust from managers. Almost half of the employees surveyed said they feel companies that have ditched traditional performance reviews are more likely to be flexible, have happier employees, and to have a more collaborative culture.

What can you do?

While you’re not likely to waltz into your boss’ office and change the company culture overnight, you can make small changes to create your own more motivational review process. Open the lines of communication with your manager and have more frequent conversations about your performance so you can make adjustments throughout the year. And remember to accept the feedback you get in these conversations instead of getting defensive. Use it as an opportunity to improve. The formal review process is still a fixture at most organizations, although more forward-thinking companies, like Google and Adobe, are moving to a process focused on two-way dialogue. On behalf of the 88 percent of us still stuck with the old system, we hope that catches on. After you review your performance with your boss, try out a tool to find out if you’re really being paid enough for your work, and be sure to check out Convene’s Annual Salary Survey.

The continuous growth of the tourism sector and its current trends and challenges, including those related to safety and security and the expansion of new businesses models, require an adaptation of the global legal framework. In this regard, the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) has been working since 2011 on the development of an international convention to protect tourists and ensure confidence in the tourism sector, an initiative now in its final phase. The 9th meeting of the Working Group on the International Convention on the ‘Protection of Tourists and the rights and obligations of Tourism Service Providers’ took place on 26-27 January 2017. The meeting was focused on advancing the Draft Convention by incorporating the comments of UNWTO Member States and the members of the Working Group in the framework of the Public Consultation made between August and November 2016. The protection of tourists in emergency situations, enhancing cooperation among States and information sharing are issues of the utmost importance for the Organization, together with the overall protection of tourists as consumers. These are major areas in the Convention and will ultimately improve confidence in tourism service providers. As UNWTO SecretaryGeneral Taleb Rifai has previously expressed, “we are at a highly relevant crossroads; tourism is increasing every year and governments and private sector need tools to build a framework to guarantee tourist protection among other trends”. The final Working Group meeting will take place on 28-29 March 2017 at the UNWTO Headquarters in Madrid and will aim to finalize text of the Draft Convention, for its submission to the XXII UNWTO General Assembly (Chengdu, China, September 2017). The Working Group on the International Convention on the ‘Protection of Tourists and the rights and obligations of Tourism Service Providers’ was created by the Decision of the UNWTO Executive Council in 2011. The Working Group, chaired by Mr. Zoltan Somogyi (UNWTO Executive Director for Programme and Coordination), integrates representatives of UNWTO Member States, International Organizations and the private sector. Hotels & Culinary ASIA | January-February 2017 | 33


Brand Profile: Edition Hotels Edition Hotels have the following hotel projects to be completed. This data is provided by TOPHOTELPROJECTS; all project details including suppliers and contacts can be found on their database: Edition Hotel BarcelonaThe Barcelona hotel will be owned and developed by KKH Property Investors and managed by Marriott International under a long-term agreement. Spanish designer Lázaro Rosa-Violán will also be involved in the project, which will involve a total transformation by Barcelona’s Office of Architecture of an existing office building.The hotel will be in the city’s Ciutat Vella district, close to the Cathedral of Barcelona and nearly adjacent to the Santa Caterina Market.

Edition Abu Dhabi

Over the next three years, Marriott International’s Edition Hotels is poised to open 12 new hotel projects spread across four major global hospitality regions, representing a bountiful and prolific expansion for Edition Hotels. Once completed, these 12 projects will bring 3,006 new Edition Hotels rooms to the global hospitality industry. The bulk of these projects are currently under construction, with 7 total finding themselves in that phase. Another hotel is even further along, currently in the pre-opening phase. Two others are in the pre-planning phase and two others are in the planning phase. According to information from TOPHOTELPROJECTS data base, Marriott International expects five of these projects to come to fruition in 2017, four to do so in 2018, and 3 others to be completed in 2019 or beyond. Regionally, the Asia Pacific region, which includes the aforementioned continent as well as Australia, will be home to the majority of this project, with 6 new hotels and 1,541 new rooms coming to that region. The other projects are spread somewhat evenly across North America, Europe and the Middle East, with two hotels a piece coming to those regions. North American will welcome 600 new rooms from Edition Hotels, Europe will welcome 350 new rooms, and the Middle East will welcome a total of 515 new rooms. Edition is a brand that Marriott totes as “The ‘A’ List of Great Boutique Hotels.” It was created through a partnership between the famed boutique hotel impresario Ian Schrager and the global hospitality industry juggernaut that is Marriott International. Creation, of course, is only part of what matters. Since its inception, Edition Hotels has risen in to the ranks of the world’s finest hotel brands, establishing itself as one of the first truly global luxury lifestyle hotel brands. Edition has taken the personalized and individual hotel experience that has made so many boutique hotels highly sought after by a new generation of travelers, and essentially packaged it for consumption by the larger 34 | January-February 2017 | Hotels & Culinary ASIA

global hospitality industry. The end result is a polished, personable, comfortable, sophisticated and truly accessible hotel brand. One of the core qualities that has made Edition Hotels so successful has been the groundbreaking design of the public spaces contained within each of its facilities. These vibrant public spaces employ sophisticated programming that gives each individual Edition Hotels property a sustainable edge over its competition, regardless of what market the facility finds itself entering. With Edition Hotels, Marriott International has set out to push the boundaries of the industry, entering an unchartered area of timeless design, true quality, unique originality and modern service. As the major operators in the global hospitality space continue to redefine what it means to be a luxury boutique hotel for a new generation of travelers, Marriott International’s Edition Hotels will likely be a vital part of that conversation.

The Abu Dhabi EDITION will be part of the prestigious Al Bateen Harbor complex within the Abu Dhabi Marina, an upscale mixeduse development including luxury residential and retail.The Edition brand is a collection of customized properties designed to appeal to sophisticated business travelers accustomed to extraordinary service with a modern touch. The properties are intended to showcase the best in dining and nightlife, services and amenities for travelers and local residents.

Edition Shanghai Located just 100 meters from the Bund, The Shanghai Edition hotel will be located in a refurbishment of one of the oldest high-rise buildings of Shanghai. The hotel will include a neighboring existing art-deco building and a new podium that connects the two historic structures.More information on EDITION hotels and other Hotel Chains can be found on TOPHOTELPROJECTS, the specialized service provider in the exchange of cutting-edge information of hotel construction in the international hospitality industry.


Hilton Honors Provides Exclusive Access to Once in a Lifetime Music Experiences Partnered with Live Nation, Hilton Honors Launches Integrated Music Program, “Music Happens Here” and Presents a New Original Video Series Available on Spotify

Hilton Honors Provides Exclusive Access to Once in a Lifetime Music ExperiencesHilton Honors Provides Exclusive Access to Once in a Lifetime Music Experiences Hilton Honors Provides Exclusive Access to Once in a Lifetime Music ExperiencesHilton Honors Provides Exclusive Access to Once in a Lifetime Music Experiences Hilton Honors Provides Exclusive Access to Once in a Lifetime Music ExperiencesHilton Honors Provides Exclusive Access to Once in a Lifetime Music Experiences 36 | January-February 2017 | Hotels & Culinary ASIA

During GRAMMY® Week, Hilton (NYSE: HLT) launched “Music Happens Here,” a first of its kind integrated music program that provides Hilton Honors members with unique concert experiences and unprecedented access to music and artist connections. The program builds on Hilton’s exclusive partnerships with Live Nation and with The Recording Academy®(the organization which bestows the GRAMMY®), and introduces a new music and travel content creation partnership with Spotify. Hilton Honors has once again upped the ante to give members more of what they want most. Through its “Music Happens Here” program, Hilton will continue to provide Hilton Honors members with access to top concerts, private meet-and-greets with chart-topping artists, one-on-one artist experiences, and private concerts at Hilton hotels and resorts and in iconic music landmarks. The “Music Happens Here” original video series, presented by Hilton and produced by Live Nation is the first of its kind on Spotify and gives audiences an insider’s guide to some of the most iconic places


where music has been created, performed and celebrated. There will be corresponding curated playlists that will guide listeners on a walking tour of the featured cities and the places where music actually happened, is happening and will continue to happen. These playlists will be found exclusively on Spotify. “Music has always happened in and around our hotels and resorts throughout the world. From The Beverly Hilton hosting the first GRAMMY Awards to John Lennon penning the lyrics to Imagine on Hilton New York Midtown stationery – Hilton will always be the world’s stage for extraordinary experiences,” said Mark Weinstein, Hilton’s Senior Vice President and Global Head of Customer Engagement, Loyalty and Partnerships. “Music Happens Here honors our legacy of celebrating travel through music and signifies our future at the center of music’s greatest moments by creating

exceptional new experiences for our Hilton Honors members. I’m thrilled Spotify has joined us and Live Nation on this journey to inspire our guests to travel the world and visit the places where music happens.” Hilton celebrated the launch of “Music Happens Here” with some of its most valuable Hilton Honors members and invited guests during an intimate Hilton GRAMMY Week dinner and private OneRepublic performance on the rooftop terrace of The Beverly Hilton. In addition, Hilton, Live Nation and Spotify premiered Spotify’s original video series’ trailer at last night’s event. Los Angeles is the first stop in the series, which will give viewers unique insight into the greatest music moments within the city – from folk rock to surf punk, and glam metal to rap – enveloping the culture of the places they’ll love to explore. “We are always looking for different

ways to create new content experiences for our listeners,” said Pat Shah, Head of Original Content Licensing. “Working with brands such as Hilton and partners like Live Nation allows us to tell great music stories that will resonate with our audience.” “We are thrilled to have co-created this breakthrough program with Hilton to bring truly unique music experiences to fans all over the world,” said Darin Wolf, EVP Live Nation Media & Sponsorship. “Whether fans are seeking out new destinations to follow their favorite artist or adding a live music event to maximize their travel experience, Music Happens Here will help amplify those experiences and create memorable moments.” Some recent Hilton Honors experiences have included: Private concerts with Jason Derulo, Halsey, Elle King, Kip Moore and Gary Clark, Jr.

Spa sessions with Kelsea Ballerini, Tinashe and Colbie Callet Backstage access with Andra Day, Barenaked Ladies, and Imagine Dragons Dance lessons with Derek and Julianne Hough and Maks & Val Chmerkovskiy Music lessons with Mick Fleetwood, Mike Posner, Christina Perri and Cody Simpson To learn more about “Music Happens Here” and to see the trailer, visit www. auction.hiltonhonors.com/ musichappenshere. The first episode of the original entertainment series will premiere on Spotify in early March. Hilton Honors members can use their Points to bid on the opportunity to attend any of the events available through Music Happens Here by visiting the Hilton Honors auction platform at HiltonHonors.com/ auctions.

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Viajes El Corte Inglés commits to Global Code of Ethics for Tourism Viajes El Corte Inglés has signed the Private Sector Commitment to the UNWTO Global Code of Ethics for Tourism, a key element of tourism enterprises’ efforts in the field of corporate social responsibility.

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ith more than 1.2 billion international travellers in 2016, tourism has become one of the most powerful catalysts for the development of countries. Its capacity to create employment — 1 out of every 11 jobs worldwide is generated by the sector — to promote environmental protection and to create synergies between nations makes it a vital tool of the 2030 Development Agenda. In this context, the UNWTO Global Code of Ethics for Tourism constitutes an important roadmap to guide the increasing responsibility of all actors involved in the preservation of the environment, culture and local communities. “The addition of Viajes El Corte Inglés to the roster of companies committed to the Global Code of Ethics for Tourism is one of the most significant milestones of 2017, particularly when we are celebrating the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development,” said UNWTO Secretary-General Taleb Rifai. Viajes El Corte Inglés is also one of the companies participating in the project carried out by UNWTO and the Global Compact on tourism and the Sustainable Development Objectives (SDGs). The Code includes principles such as respect for human rights and cultural heritage, the protection of the environment and the most vulnerable communities, as well as concepts such as inclusiveness, gender equality and accessibility. “This is a universal document that contains moral values that all societies of the twenty-first century have accepted as fundamental,” said the Secretary-General. For his part Juan Luis Vassallo Saavedra, Director of Legal Affairs and Secretary of the Board of Directors of Viajes El Corte Inglés, explained: 38 | January-February 2017 | Hotels & Culinary ASIA

“Sustainability means much more than reforesting or practising philanthropy. It is a reaffirmation of our strong link with the society we form a part of and, above all, a way of creating lasting value.” The Code of Ethics, which is currently undergoing a process of conversion into an international convention, was approved by the United Nations General Assembly in 2001 with the intention of inviting Member States to apply ethical principles relating to tourism. To date, 493 companies and associations from 67 countries have signed the Commitment. ABOUT WORLD TOURISM ORGANIZATION (UNWTO) The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) is the United Nations agency responsible for the promotion of responsible, sustainable and universally accessible tourism. As the leading international organization in the field of tourism, UNWTO promotes tourism as a driver of economic growth, inclusive development and environmental sustainability and offers leadership and support to the sector in advancing knowledge and tourism policies worldwide. UNWTO encourages the implementation of the Global Code of Ethics for Tourism, to maximize tourism”s socio-economic contribution while minimizing its possible negative impacts, and is committed to promoting tourism as an instrument in achieving the United Nations Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), geared towards reducing poverty and fostering sustainable development. UNWTO generates market knowledge, promotes competitive and sustainable tourism policies and instruments, fosters tourism education and training, and works to make tourism an effective tool for development through technical assistance projects in over 100 countries around the world. UNWTO”s membership includes 156 countries, 6 Associate Members and over 400 Affiliate Members representing the private sector, educational institutions, tourism associations and local tourism authorities. For more information visit www. unwto.org.


In Havana, Kempinski settles in a former department store

Yotel arrives in the heart of London

The British hotel chain continues to grow in The Gran Hotel Kempinski Manzana La Habana will open next spring in the Cuban capital. This opening will take place within a context marked by the increase in arrivals in Cuba where hotel projects are multiplying. The hotel will settle in the Manzana de Gómez building which was a former department store. This construction was built between 1894 and 1917 in Havana’s historic center (a UNESCO World Heritage district). It occupies an entire block in the heart of the city. The Thai hospitality group has signed a management contract with the Cuban group Gaviota (which has a 27,000 room portfolio in the country) for this development. This luxury hotel will offer 246 rooms, three restaurants, a conference center, a terrace with panoramic view, a spa and a swimming pool. As relations between the United States and Cuba are eased, the country expects to see an increase in arrivals. Moreover, last year the government announced the creation of 110,000 additional rooms by 2030. In 2016, the country welcomed nearly 3.7 million tourists and this year Cuba expects to reach more than 4 million visitors.

Great Britain and announces the launch of its third hotel in the country, in the center of London. Slated to open in 2018. The hotel chain has chosen to develop its hotel accommodation of 212 rooms in the Clerkenwell district, in the heart of London, close to the London University and the Saint Pancras district. The latter will feature a fitness center, a co-working space, a bar and an independent restaurant. Spaces will be larger than at hotels located in airport areas in order to welcome long-stay guests and they will provide an outdoor view. This brand new hotel has been developed in collaboration with Medina Investments. The hotel group Yotel, which is a branch of the Kuwaiti fund IFA Hotels & Resorts KSCC, offers two types of hotels: YotelAir and Yotel. The group started the YotelAir concept at the London Heathrow and London Gatwick airports (respectively 32 and 46 rooms) to finally arrive in Amsterdam and at Roissy Charles de Gaulle. It is the third hotel developed by the chain in England and the first to be situated in a European city center. The group wants to continue to growth in the country, especially in the cities of Manchester, Edinburgh and Glasgow. As a reminder, Yotel aims to develop 50 hotels by 2020. Hotels & Culinary ASIA | January-February 2017 | 39


Ways to produce a phenomenal guest experience Hence, you can offer your guests a hassle-free, customized and comfortable experience which will be memorable for them. Environment-friendly stays are guest-friendly too Going green is a win-win for your guests and your hotel business. More and more people are appreciating environment-friendly stays. Some of the green factors which can gain more guests for your hotel include natural building materials and decor elements, large windows for natural light flow, locally grown food, green walls and roofs, etc.

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otel trends continue to change tremendously primarily because the preferences of a modern day traveller have evolved drastically. Today, hotel design can make or break the reputation of your hotel. This has made it more challenging for the hotel owners to achieve that elusive customer delight. Well, you need not worry. We have chosen for you seven hotel trends which are sure to please the most demanding of guests.

Less is more for luxury Material luxury isn’t really what your guest is looking for these days. This does not mean that people don’t want opulence and extravagance. It simply means that today’s traveler dislikes ‘loud’ luxury. Design elements which are subtle, lend texture and have craftsmanship at their core, and cater to the new definition of luxury. Leaner and smart luxury is the hottest design trend this year.

Discontinuing design legacies The trend of continuing design legacies is outdated. Attention to every design detail isn’t restricted to a handful few designer hotels. One of the first things that people notice in a hotel is good ambience and good appearance – both of which result from good design. Start with designing an impressive hotel reception. You can consider statement chandeliers, indoor waterfalls, multimedia station etc. Choose furniture which is high on both form and function. Make the lobbies multipurpose. Incorporate areas for formal talks and plugging points. Another aspect which will ensure that your guests have a great experience is a seamless blend of the indoor and the outdoors. Bring in nature 40 | January-February 2017 | Hotels & Culinary ASIA

wherever possible. Wood paneling, green surfaces and stone decorations always add value.

The beauty of unique accommodation and up gradation Unique accommodation is another in-vogue design trend. The present traveler has outgrown the traditional room design. Upbeat colors and assorted décor appeal more to the modern guest. This is also true when it comes to upgrading the features of your hotel rooms. For instance, most of the hotels today have brought the luxury of spa right in the bathrooms. People see bathrooms as spaces for rejuvenation and hence would love to experience features like waterfall shower, giant fluffy towels, bath oils, giant tubs and above all, more space.

Customize stays for more smiles The memory of a hotel stay is the strongest for travelers. Since people get to try only one stay at a time, hoteliers are incorporating customized stays to enhance the guest experience. Themed guestrooms are fast becoming a traveler’s favorite. Knowing the preferences of your guests helps you tremendously, to personalize their stay better. Also, warm and inviting stays seal the deal. Design elements such as fireplaces, furniture and inspiring decorations make for a distinct design scheme.

Smart hotels make happy guests Holidays are synonymous with relaxation. Thanks to the numerous smart technology tools, you can make your hotel a perfect blend of relaxation, luxury and comfort. Right from speeding up the check in formalities with tablets, to controlling the temperature and lighting in the rooms – everything is possible with a single touch.

Authenticity – the latest buzz in hospitality Travelers the world over are choosing authenticity over stereotypical hospitality. You can transform your hotel design immensely by drawing from the culture and art. A simple addition of local art in your design scheme can make your hotel ambience distinctive and engaging. You can bring the native taste to your restaurant menu. Also, inviting local celebrity chefs to cook for your restaurant and conduct workshops about local cuisine, or a guided tour to local orchards and spice gardens all add more value to your hotel. Authenticity helps hotels create more genuine experiences for their guests. Incorporate these trends and be assured that a guest’s stay will be one of their best memories! Author Bio Shruti Agrawal is the Managing Director of Excella Expertise LLC – The marketing partner of Excella Worldwide. Her electronics engineering background encourages her to be on the lookout for ways to challenge and disrupt business models to make them better. She has a keen eye for architecture and design paired with the ability of recognizing trends that work, which allows her to put forward value for her readers in the content she creates. Shruti’s experience is in the procurement and sourcing industry.


India and UK tourism sign MoU

India and the United Kingdom have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to ease restrictions on the number of scheduled flights between the two countries following talks recently.

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imits on flights from Indian cities, including Chennai and Kolkata,

have been scrapped, allowing for a greater range of flights for passengers while providing a boost to trade and tourism for the UK and India. Building new links with important trading partners is a key part of the British government’s plans for a Global Britain, opening up new export markets and creating jobs and economic growth. The agreement also opened all destinations in the UK for Indian carriers for code share flights, and reciprocally the UK carriers can also operate code share flights to any international airport in India, through domestic code share arrangements. The agreement was formally signed by Minister of Civil Aviation P. Ashok Gajapathi Raju, on behalf of India and Lord Ahmad, Aviation Minister

of the UK, during a visit to India where he led a delegation of British companies for the 2017 CAPA India Aviation Summit. “The increase in number of flights between the UK and India is encouraging news for our businesses and tourists,” said Gajapathi Raju. “We already enjoy strong ties with the UK and we welcome such continued association which in the long run will not only encourage business activity, but also people-topeople contact. I am sure that this agreement will bring direct and indirect benefits to many sectors of the economies of our two countries.” Tourism from India makes an important contribution to the UK economy. In 2015, there were 422,000 visits from India to the UK, bringing more than £433 million to

the economy. “India is one of our closest allies and key trading partners and this new agreement will only serve to strengthen this crucial relationship,” said Lord Ahmad. “We are unlocking new trade and tourism opportunities which will boost our economies, create new jobs and open up new business links. This is great news for both the UK and India and is yet another sign that we are open for business and ready to build and strengthen our trade links. “India is a rapidly expanding and important market for aviation and the agreement signed today will allow airlines to develop new services and air routes. The final decision on additional flights between the UK and India is a commercial one for airlines.”

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Unlocking a hotel innovation strategy By Carlos Martin-Rios and Sabina Savatin

And yet, generating ideas for new services used to be the exclusive domain of top management, marketers, and/or designers. Not anymore. Many industries have been relying on open innovation as a source of strategic innovation to continue growing and to continue catering to ever-changing customer demand. Open innovation activities (co-design, co-creation, crowdsourcing and contests) are powerful instruments to stimulate innovations in diverse fields of application. These collaborative innovations engage a variety of external stakeholders, including users, designers, producers (management and coworkers) and suppliers.

It is human nature to always look for a better, more enhanced experience. Arguably, innovation is the key idea that is shaping corporate life, or even defining the actual corporate mission. Hospitality firms are not indifferent to the changes occurring at the level of their competitors, the fast-paced market, or emerging technology breakthroughs.

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et, as we have argued before in previous articles, the bulk of the hotel industry is somehow lagging behind. There is however a leading group of firms that not only keep up with the pace of innovation but are able to innovate the very way they provide customers with enhanced experiences. How do top hoteliers think, tinker with and discover a more innovative, personalized and memorable customer experience? We have analyzed several disruptively innovative approaches from leading hotels.

Open versus closed innovation The one word answer to the question above is opening the innovation process to users and customers. The idea of using contests to stimulate innovation has a long history. Back in 1795, Napoleon offered an award of 12,000 francs to improve upon the prevailing food preservation methods. After 14 years of experimentation, Nicolas Appert claimed the prize when he devised the same basic technology that is still used to can food today.

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Employees are extremely knowledgeable about their business and their integration into the early phases of an innovation process brings in creativity while mitigating the not-invented here syndrome. Nevertheless, the average hospitality incumbent does not have proper training on the newest gadget/technology available. To be completely blatant, they do not know of certain existing technologies or how an application actually works. Using the same judgement, an IT person cannot understand the core of hospitality. What if they would be brought together and placed in a friendly, potentially unconventional, environment that fosters creativity, such as the suite of a hotel or a section of an art gallery/museum? Telling people to think outside the box won’t actually make them do so, showing them how to think outside the box might. Best practices in open innovation Among hotels, some first movers have already started experimenting with crowdsourcing and open innovation. In this article, we

document two of them. These innovation contests refer to the early stages of the innovation process. The Lopesan Group in Spain organizes a contest where employees come up with creative ideas, suppliers and companies from related service industries discuss the scope of the initiatives, students with different backgrounds help develop them, and top management evaluates the solutions. Every year since 2012, Lopesan Group has produced the ‘Think in Innovation’ Contest, bringing together colleagues from other companies, students from around the world, employees eager for innovative experiences and management deeply convinced of the value of service innovation. From IT apps to workplace design, from management practices to new service offering to operational solutions, each initiative takes advantage of an intensive twoday sort of hackathon initiative to bring ideas out into the real world. Each year, Thinking in Innovation generates a set of ideas, and each year, hundreds of participants gather in the Gran Canaria’s Exhibition and Convention Center for a full weekend of fun and work. Take also the example of Park Inn by Radisson Manchester City Centre. Their management team arranges an open innovation contest where teams from several hotel management schools take part in a three-day kick-off event in Manchester. Students attend a set of conferences, exchange ideas with peers and, afterwards, develop innovative ideas that will help revolutionize the Park Inn by Radisson guest experience. These ideas are further submitted for consideration by the contest


judges and the public votes. Driven by an open innovation spirit, a dedicated webpage allows the public to choose their favorite innovation. Two innovations move to the final stage of the contest where the judges select the final winner. Blending a mix of cuttingedge conference content with innovative experiences from leading creative teams, ParkInn Innovation is the one essential innovation event for Park Inn by Radisson Manchester City Centre seeking to harness the power of creativity and the dynamic interplay that is underway. All these ideas have as a purpose to foster change starting from the heart of the business: including customers, students and hotel employees. The belief that the employee interacts with the guest every day or that the hotel management student knows what the “new customer” wants is valid, but does not suffice. Innovation contests have the ability to create the conditions for innovation to thrive.

Co-creation involves a bigger picture Just to clarify, these innovation initiatives are not driven by branding or marketing models. Surely, marketing strategies attempt to create memorable experiences, become trendsetters and enable a unique brand journey. Instead, the examples offered here are strategycentered innovations driven by organizational needs for service, business model and process innovations. A quote often attributed to Albert Einstein states that insanity is to keep doing the same thing over and over again and to expect different results. Customers are now used to receiving a service that is adapted and customized to their own specific needs. The

industry has caught on to the trend and is scrambling to innovate every aspect of its business. Today’s hoteliers understand that innovation thrives on technology, new apps, social media, new services and service processes, as well as new management and organizational tools and techniques. “Service is a monologue, hospitality is a dialogue” Danny Meyer coined this phrase in his bestselling book, Setting the Table. Open innovation helps open up the dialogue. Hoteliers can unlock their innovation strategy by combining the key elements mentioned above: the perspective of the upand-coming millennial student, the work and experience of the current employee, the educated view of the guest, and management’s profound technological awareness.

About the authors Dr. Carlos Martin-Rios (PhD Rutgers University) is Assistant Professor of Organizational Innovation and HRM at the École hôtelière de Lausanne. He performs research that aims to understand and predict the factors that determine nontechnological innovation (e.g., business model innovation, organizational innovation, and management innovation), interfirm collaborations and knowledge exchanges, and innovative talent management in knowledge-intensive service firms at large and, in particular, hospitality firms. Sabina Savatin is a final year student at the École Hôtelière de Lausanne (EHL), pursuing a bachelor of science in international hospitality management. EHL is renowned as the leading hospitality school, preparing its students for an ever-changing industry. Sabina participated in the “Thinking in Innovation” contest, organized by the Lopesan Group.

Trump’s executive order goes into effect The Department of Homeland Security issued a directive on Friday, ordering the Customs and Border Protection to enforce Trump’s executive order, which bars all persons from Iran, Iraq, Syria, Sudan, Libya, Yemen and Somalia from entering the United States for 90 days. The order also suspends the US Refugee Admissions Program for 120 days until the President determines they have been sufficiently changed. Since it took effect on Friday, the order has sparked legal limbo for those who already were on their way to the US. According to several reports, green card holders — legal permanent residents of the US — were also among those who have been prevented from getting on flights. This is while, green cards are not specifically mentioned in Trump’s executive order. Thus, the National Iranian American Council (NIAC) called on Iranian green-card holders “not [to] leave the US until further clarity is achieved”. Several Iraqi passengers and a Yemeni national, who had valid visas for the US, were blocked from boarding a flight at Egypt’s Cairo airport bound for New York on Saturday, The Guardian cited from airport officials. At least two Iraqis were detained after flying in to New York’s JFK airport on Friday night. Their lawyers filed a lawsuit against the measure on Saturday, demanding their clients be released, The New York Times reported. One of the Iraqis, named as Hameed Khalid Darweesh, is said to have worked on behalf of the US government in Iraq for 10 years and the second detained Iraqi, Haider Sameer Abdulkhaleq Alshawi, was reportedly traveling to New York to join his wife and young son. Meanwhile, Google recalled its traveling employees, who may be affected by the order, to return to the US immediately. The tech company’s Chief Executive Officer Sundar Pichai expressed concern about the new order, saying even though they have valid visas, they would be blocked from returning to the US. Mr Pichai denounced Trump’s executive order. “It’s painful to see the personal cost of Trump’s executive order on our colleagues,” he said to Bloomberg. According to Mr Pichai, 100 of Google employees were affected by the order. Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg was also highly critical of Trump and condemned his bans on refugees. “The United States is a nation of immigrants, and we should be proud of that,” he said. Trump, however, has given Homeland Security 60 days to begin providing him with the names of other countries to add to the list. Hotels & Culinary ASIA | January-February 2017 | 45


2017: Year of Eastern Europe

2017

is forecast to be the year of Eastern Europe, with the region gaining popularity largely due to the shift in tourism away from other destinations that have been affected by acts of terror. The region is also appealing to British tourists concerned about the value of the British pound. Travel deal experts say holidays in beautiful destinations such as Croatia and Bulgaria are on average 30 per cent cheaper than everpopular southern coastal Spain this year. Experts predict the Eastern European region will continue to grow in popularity throughout 2017. Spain, the USA, France and Germany top the list of destinations Britons plan to book in 2017, however the Travelzoo Spring 2017 Travel Trends Survey shows nearly half of Britons are avoiding

traditional Western European destinations because they’re worried over safety. For others (17 per cent), the weakness of the British pound is the biggest influence on their choice of destination in 2017.

Croatia top choice in Eastern Europe Over a third are planning a UK holiday this year, up 7 per cent year-on-year, but millions of people prefer to travel abroad, with the Spring Travel Trends showing the Central and Eastern Europe region is growing in popularity. Thirteen per cent of respondents say they plan to visit this region in 2017 and interest in Croatia has more than doubled since this time last year, making it the most popular choice in Eastern Europe. Travelzoo recently predicted that UK tourists could be paying at least 10 per cent more for their holiday in 2017, due to sterling

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depreciation and the rising cost of oil. “Seven months on from the Leave vote it’s encouraging to see Britons considering Eastern Europe as a travel destination in 2017,” said Travelzoo General Manager, Joel Brandon-Bravo. “As flight bans to Sharm el Sheikh and Tunisia continue, and with uncertainty over the value of the pound, countries such as Croatia and Bulgaria-which operate outside of the Euro-offer better exchange rates and value for money to British tourists.”

Balkans and Poland emerge as holiday destinations The survey shows Croatia, Bulgaria and Poland to be the most popular Eastern European holiday destinations this year and 45 per cent of Britons considering travelling there admit they would have never thought of travelling to these countries before.

“UK tourists who are now looking further east won’t be disappointed,” said Mr Brandon-Bravo. “If you take the Balkan Peninsula for example, the coastlines of Croatia and Montenegro are close to the very popular east coast of Italy. They boast the same warm weather and beautiful beaches, lakes and mountains, but holidays in this region are on average 30 per cent cheaper than popular resorts in Spain and Italy. “The fact British holidaymakers are considering alternative, more affordable travel destinations this year is certainly positive news for the travel industry too, particularly after what has been a turbulent 18 months. Last year we were right about 2016 being the year of the US, so we’re confident in our prediction that 2017 will be the year Eastern Europe secures its place as a popular destination for British tourists.”


Most expensive luxury hotels in Florida named

Coca-Cola Amatil and Molson Coors sign major deal in Australia

Coca-Cola Amatil and Molson Coors International have announced that Miller Genuine Draft and Miller Chill will be distributed in Australia exclusively by Coca-Cola Amatil, as a part of a new agreement between the two companies.

The Florida Keys is home to the three most expensive hotels in the Sunshine State, according to the finding of a new survey conducted by Miamihotels.org. In determining the rankings, the survey compared luxury hotels based on their cheapest available rate for a double room during the month of February 2017. That timeframe was chosen because it represents the high season for most Florida destinations. At a rate of $1395 per night for its least expensive room, Little Palm Island Resort & Spa, located on an island off Little Torch Key, leads the rankings. Coming in second most expensive is The Moorings Villa & Spa ($1287) in Islamorada. Meanwhile, the Sunset Key Cottages in Key West rounds out the podium at a minimum overnight rate of $1035. The Setai distinguishes itself as the priciest luxury hotel in Miami Beach. To stay in this resort, which is situated in the famous Art Deco district, a guest will have to spend a minimum of $992 per night for a room. The priciest hotel in southwest Florida is the Ritz Carlton in Naples. There a visitor will find a room from $933 nightly. The following table shows the 10 most expensive hotels in Florida. The prices listed indicate the cheapest available rate for a double room during the time period spanning February 1–28, 2017. 1. Little Palm Island Resort & Spa $1395 2. The Moorings Villa & Spa (Islamorada) $1287 3. Sunset Key Cottages (Key West) $1035 4. Fisher Island Resort $1030 5. The St. Regis Bal Harbour Resort $998 6. The Setai (Miami Beach) $992 7. The Ritz-Carlton, Naples $933 8. Faena Hotel Miami Beach $839 9. The Breakers Palm Beach $774 10. Boca Beach Club (Boca Raton,) $771

The Miller brand is the fourth biggest Premium International beer in Australia and its addition to the Coca-Cola Amatil beer portfolio is hugely significant for Amatil’s Alcohol and Coffee business said the company’s Managing Director of Alcohol and Coffee, Shane Richardson. “This new agreement deepens our existing relationship with Molson Coors, now the world’s third largest brewer, and represents an exciting step in our journey to grow our beer business across Australia,” he said. The move is part of a new long-term sales and distribution agreement between Coca-Cola Amatil and Molson Coors International, a division of Molson Coors which today acquired the global rights to the Miller brand portfolio. “As we welcome the world-famous Miller family of brands into our business globally, we are thrilled to be renewing our partnership with Coca-Cola Amatil,” said Stewart Glendinning, CEO of Molson Coors International. “For nearly three years, Amatil has done an incredible job introducing the Australian market to Coors and Blue Moon, and we’re excited to continue our work together as we seek to further delight Australian beer drinkers with Miller Chill and MGD.” Coca-Cola Amatil and MCI have been brand partners since 2013 when Amatil re-entered the beer market, with the agreement giving Amatil distribution rights to the Molson Coors beer portfolio, including Coors and Blue Moon. “Our relationship with all of our brand partners is built on collaboration, trust and an aligned view on what future success looks like. We have achieved great momentum in our alcohol business over the last two years and this agreement is representative of the type of growth opportunities available within this sector,” said Coca-Cola Amatil’s Group Managing Director Alison Watkins. The newly strengthened partnership will see Amatil retain the distribution rights for these brands with the addition, from today, of Miller Genuine Draft and Miller Chill, to its premium beer portfolio. Hotels & Culinary ASIA | January-February 2017 | 47


The Australian architecture award goes to Vibe Canberra Airport

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FE Hotels’ Vibe Hotel Canberra Airport has won the prestigious Emil Sodersten Award for Best Interior Architecture at the Australian Institute of Architects’ National Architecture Awards.

The judges noted the hotel’s lobby is “world-class in size and is similar in proportions to the void at (Frank Lloyd Wright’s) Guggenheim Museum in New York or the Pantheon in Rome. But this is not a museum, or a religious edifice, but rather a commercial building, where net lettable area and gross floor area are usually the primary drivers. To be able to build a void, or really to not build at all, in this manner in any modern building is exemplary. The fact that this is an airport hotel makes it even more admirable and award-worthy.” Vibe Hotel Canberra Airport, designed by Bates Smart, was developed by Canberra Airport in conjunction with TFE Hotels and opened its doors in November 2015. TFE Hotels CEO, Rachel Argaman, said it had since become known as the cool and contemporary design hotel turning airport stays on their heads. “Bates Smart has an award-winning track record in design and this latest award has confirmed to the public what we and our guests knew all along – that this is yet another showpiece hotel design,” she said. “It’s a wonderful testament to their creativity, their professionalism and their design prowess that the cutting-edge design of one of our next generation Vibe Hotels is recognised by Australia’s top industry body.” Vibe Hotel Canberra Airport had previously bagged three design awards at the Master Builder Association annual awards in Canberra – for best building project, best project between $20 million and $50 million and best interior finishes. The soaring seven-storey interior atrium, around which the whole hotel 48 | January-February 2017 | Hotels & Culinary ASIA

is built, provides a dramatic visual while naturally inviting guests to better connect with each other and with their Vibe Hosts. At its heart, Helix Bar and Dining is a vast open dining area and cocktail bar with a circular snug bar encircling a fire pit and a long shared dining table. This modern bistro offers a delectable menu based on local Australian produce, regional wines, creative cocktails and local craft beers. Here, just metres from the gate, travellers can relax with a fine meal, knowing they will make their flights on time. In keeping with the hotel’s flight theme are its spacious Lower and Upper Deck rooms, First Class rooms and one and two bedroom

apartments. Each of the 191 sound-proof rooms have stunning sunrise and sunset views all the way to Old Parliament House – guests can watch flights taking off as they work out in Vibe Fit gym. The hotel is the first to open as part of Australian-based TFE Hotels’ re-envisioning of its Vibe Hotels brands. Each new or refurbished Vibe Hotel will feature rooms with modern natural finishes that reflect the local area, spaces that come alive as you enter, technology that fosters guest interaction via communal work areas and social hubs, locally sourced menus, Vibe Hosts sharing insider knowledge and Vibe Fit healthy menus and in-room yoga channels.


Mulpha Australia acquires Rydges Esplanade Cairns

New stylish uniforms for Pullman Sydney-based Dallen’s Creative Director, Paul Fitzpatrick, has created a fresh new look for the staff at Pullman hotels across Australia. Pullman’s uniform was globally given a makeover by French designer Martine Sitbon, with the team at Dallen then giving them a stylish Australian interpretation and have quickly become the most fashionable uniforms in the nation. The company worked to a brief of, “at Pullman we exude cool… from our uniforms, to our F&B and the service we provide” and what the company has created is certainly along those lines. “Pullman Hotels and Resorts are designed with a contemporary edge that strikes a balance for a new connecting performance and enjoyment, efficiency and wellbeing, business and leisure,”. “The new Pullman uniforms reflect an understated sophistication, in both the colour palette and styling, soft overlays, cool shades that reflect harmony and calm. Fabrics are transseasonal, easy care and selected for maximum wearer comfort. “Not in any way a traditional uniform but more fashion forward savvy,” Fitzpatrick said. Dallen are well known for providing innovative designer uniforms to internationally renowned luxury brands and high end, boutique clients spanning all four corners of the globe. 50 | January-February 2017 | Hotels & Culinary ASIA

Rydges Esplanade Cairns has been sold to Mulpha Australia for AUD$40 million amid continued strong interest in north Queensland hotel investment opportunities. The off-market transaction was negotiated by Wayne Bunz, National Director of CBRE Hotels, on behalf of Abacus Funds Management Limited. Rydges Esplanade adds to Mulpha’s stable of Australian hotel and leisure assets, which includes some of Australia’s leading hotels, namely InterContinental Sydney, InterContinental Sanctuary Cove and One and Only Hayman Island. Mulpha’s broader leisure portfolio also includes Bimbadgen Winery Estate Hunter Valley, Marritz Hotel and Salzburg Apartments in Perisher Valley and Hotel Schools in Sydney and Melbourne. Mulpha Australia CEO, Greg Shaw, said Cairns was a “thriving Hotel market with strong prospects”. “We are excited to invest in one of the destination’s leading hotels and look forward to an exciting period of growth,” he said. “Mulpha continues to actively pursue Hotel investments both directly and through fund and syndicate structures and apply our specialist operational knowledge to maximize returns. We look forward to working closely with Rydges Hotels on this unique asset.” The 4-star Rydges Esplanade Hotel comprises 242 rooms and a range of facilities, including a restaurant and bar, conference venues, a lagoon pool, gymnasium and tennis court. Underpinning investor interest has been the strong performance of the Cairns market, which has been the leading hotel market in Australia as a result of record international and domestic travel numbers. For the year ending July 2016, Smith Travel Research figures show average occupancy rose 6.1% to 82.0%, ADR increased 7.4% to $133.90 and RevPAR surged by 14.0% to $109.74.


Withers advises Marriott on key Singapore hotel deals

International law firm Withers and its Singapore alliance, Withers KhattarWong, have represented Marriott International in securing their first JW Marriott and EDITION hotels in Singapore.

M

arriott will take over the management of the luxury South Beach hotel from owners South Beach Consortium and City Developments Limited (CDL), and re-brand the property to “JW Marriott Hotel Singapore South Beach” in late 2016. The landmark South Beach hotel is part of the mixeduse South Beach development, concept designed by Foster & Partners.

conceived by visionary hotelier Ian Schrager in partnership with Marriott International. “These are hugely exciting and significant deals for Marriott, signed on the eve of their transformational merger with Starwood,” said Robert Williams, Asia Pacific head of Withers’ hotels and hospitality team. “Establishing a 2-hotel relationship with Singapore heavyweights CDL, after a hard fought operator selection process, is a major result for Marriott.

Located in the downtown area, the hotel has over 600 rooms and suites, with interiors expertly designed by Philippe Starck.

“Giant mixed use projects like these are complex and demanding, but becoming the new norm for city developments in the region.

The Singapore Edition will be an eight-storey, 190-room boutique luxury development located in the Orchard Road district. A 2019 opening date is expected. EDITION is a luxury-lifestyle brand

“Our international team were delighted to help Marriott on these important deals,” he said.

Williams led the Withers’ team, working with Singapore-based partners Carla Barker and Deborah Barker and assisted by lawyers Ushan Premaratne and Itishree Tyagi. In recent months, Withers’ hotels and hospitality team has advised Pro-invest Group on a AUD$300 million capital raising for its inaugural Australian hotel fund and represented SilverNeedle Hospitality Group on a AUD$300 million three hotel lease deal with the Queensland Investment Corporation. Withers represents leading owners and operators in the sector. The team specialises in acquisitions and sales of hotels and resorts, mixeduse hotel projects, negotiating hotel management, franchising and leasing deals, operating platform M&A transactions, and providing capital raising, fund structuring and vacation ownership advice.

Hotels & Culinary ASIA | January-February 2017 | 51


Pullman Sydney Airport deploys new cloud-based communications system

A

LE, operating under the Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise brand, with McLaren Technologies has announced the five-star Pullman Sydney Airport has become the latest hotel associated with AccorHotels to deploy a combined cloud-based collaboration solution developed by the two companies. By deploying the solution via the cloud, AccorHotels is able to leverage advanced communication to improve guests services and reduce its upfront costs by distributing the investment over a number of years. The solution is an integration between Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise cloud solution and Jazz, McLaren Technologies’ cloud-based management service for voice. Opening on June 7th, 2016, the roll-out at Pullman Sydney Airport is the seventh deployment of the innovative cloud based solution in Australia and New Zealand. Accor’s decision to continue to roll out the solution in its newest location follows successful projects in Adelaide, Mackay, Newcastle, Brisbane and the soon to open Sofitel Wellington, New Zealand. The deployment of Alcatel-Lucent OpenTouch Enterprise Cloud (OTEC) platform is managed by UXC Connect, whereas Mclaren technologies

integrated the hardware into the hotel property management system (PMS). By integrating the PABX component of OTEC into the PMS, the hotel properties can separate the communication spending to bill for telephone calls, provide voicemail, as well as set auto wake-up calls and any other features that might be necessary in a hotel context. Additionally, AccorHotels can now employ network convergence to combine its internet links into the property with all its administration and guest functionality. It also enables the hotel to improve overall guest services by enabling other applications on top of the network convergence and to allow guests to use their own devices to access hotel services. “Our movement towards a cloud-based telecommunications system is quite innovative for the hotel industry here in Australia and it’s something we see as a true competitive advantage. As the hotel industry faces technology disruption and stiffer competition than ever before, it’s important that we too are embracing the power of technology,” said Daniel Marden, Director IT Business Systems, AccorHotels Australia. “The structure of the deployment, where we work on a consumption basis, allows our chains to be more profitable in our busy periods. It also shields us from the

52 | January-February 2017 | Hotels & Culinary ASIA

risk in downturns. It encourages our individual sites, which now includes the Pullman at Sydney Airport, to innovate and drive reservations, as rewards are increasingly linked to performance. It will also help us continue and sustain growth, enabling rapid implementation for planned new sites with central and remote management.” Matthew White, CEO, McLaren Technologies said: “Although the technology in each of the AccorHotels sites is innovative in itself, what is truly groundbreaking is the commercial model upon which the solution is built. It’s a progressive business model that charges on a consumption basis per occupied room per night.” “The feedback we are getting from the customer is that the financial model aligns neatly with their business model – which can be seasonal and unpredictable. By aligning the billing to the seasonal nature of the hospitality industry we are providing AccorHotels with a competitive advantage,” he said. For ALE, this represents a wider push towards the cloud across the entire Australia-Pacific Region, led by Steve Saunders, Cloud Director for the APAC region, ALE. “AccorHotels’ sustained investment in cloud based telephony is clearly paying dividends,” he said. “Given that the model is based on shared risk and shared reward with our customers and partners, it also fosters a work relationship that is based on achieving more together and collaborating as a team. “In an increasingly competitive hospitality industry, it’s this shared risk and reward model which will help hotels continue to grow into the future,” he said.


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50,000 soap bars donated to Fiji’s cyclone victims by Australian Hotels Star Ratings Australia is the leading independent accommodation accreditation scheme in Australia. The scheme uses ‘star’ symbols, a mark of quality, which are a licensed trademark and are an internationally recognised symbol for quality accommodation standards that are used in more than 70 countries worldwide. FACT: 85% of Australian travellers use Star Ratings when choosing and booking accommodation

Star Ratings are your safeguard against ‘self-ratings’ The Star Ratings scheme enjoys a long and distinguished heritage with the Australian Auto Clubs, dating back to the 1950s, when the clubs first started assessing accommodation on behalf of their members.

Australian charity Soap Aid, whereby discarded soap bars in hotels are reprocessed and donated to third world countries, has sent 50,000 bars to Fiji to assist victims of TC Winston. Soap Aid’s Founder and CEO, Michael Matulick, said hygiene was essential for those currently homeless as a result of the Category 5 storm that devastated Fiji last week. “Thanks to our growing number of hotel partners throughout the region we have been able to respond in 24 hours with our commitment to assist the disaster relief effort in Fiji,” he said. “Over 5 tonnes (50,000 bars) of our Soap Aid soap were packed and provided to our aid partners to ensure this life saving soap is distributed to the families and children in critical need.

Star Ratings Australia offers accommodation providers: • A trusted and reliable accommodation rating which uses the licensed ‘star’ symbol trademark, an internationally recognised symbol for quality accommodation standards used in more than 70 countries worldwide • A rating system which reflects the cleanliness, quality and condition of the accommodation – three factors that are of vital importance to Australia travellers when booking accommodation •A rating which is used by 85% of Australian travellers when they are choosing and booking accommodation •A safe guard against ‘self-assessed’ properties who are prohibited from using the licensed star symbol •A sophisticated and renowned online reputation management tool, ReviewPro, included in the annual fee -Inclusion in Star Ratings Australia’s marketing channels and campaigns which drives traffic to your Star Rating accommodation listing and your booking pages Help you achieve commercial success – build your reputation and help you maintain it so you can meet and surpass the expectations of your guests. For more information, please visit: http://www.starratings.com.au/ 54 | January-February 2017 | Hotels & Culinary ASIA

“As we have seen with past natural disasters, more recently in Thailand and Japan, sickness and death has continued well after the tragic event due to the lack of hygiene and sanitation in those areas which have been hardest hit. “This soap will dramatically improve hygiene within those communities we are targeting in Fiji, allowing them to rebuild their homes and their lives sooner,” he said. Matulick said the best way others could directly assist was to donate via the Soap Aid website at: www.SoapAid.org


*The statistics have been audited based

116,688

116

Professional Visitors

Countries’ Buyers

2,207

250,000 m2

Exhibitors

Exhibition Space

March 28 - 31,2017 Shanghai New International Expo Center

Shanghai International Hospitality Equipment & Supply Expo 2017

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Only takes 30 seconds to register online to get free admission now! Follow us: Organizer: UBM Sinoexpo Limited

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