TTW – Hotels have shown stunning growth in the past decade is overwhelming to say the least. But simultaneously, there’s a lot of competition in the Luxury hotels sector since the advent of luxury tourism. Please elaborate the contribution of Kempinski as a key influencer in the luxury tourism industry.
Konstantin Zeuke : Kempinski Hotel Mall of the Emirates is well renowned in the Middle East and remains one of the leading luxury hotels within Dubai and the UAE. This is partly due to our spacious rooms, our ideal location in proximity to all key attractions and business hubs of the city, directly linked to Mall of the Emirates, Ski Dubai and the the metro which our guests really appreciate. The quality of service we provide is recognized as being one of the best in town and assures our guests have an unforgettable experience.
In addition, we consistently promote innovation to make our guests’ stay even more exciting, luxurious and memorable. Our goal is to re-invent ourselves continuously . We make sure that our rooms and public areas are always up to date and that we provide state-of-the-art technology.
TTW – Wellness travel is a vital part of tourism. What facilities do you have for tourists who exclusively prefer ‘wellness tourism’?
Konstantin Zeuke : We have seen an increase in guests looking for wellness breaks and/or holidays. The hotel has a luxurious spa, Softouch Spa, which is open 24 hrs, 7 days a week to ensure guests have easy access to wellness around the clock. Softouch Spa is an Ayurvedic spa, following the Indian philosophy relying on three points, Relaxation, Refreshment and Renewal.
Guests also have the possibility to relax at our two outside pools and enjoy the all year long sunny weather of Dubai.
In term of gastronomy, our chefs are working hard to offer healthy options for guests in all our restaurants. Our Executive Chef Sudqi Naddaf is extremely passionate about organic and local produce making sure the menus across our restaurants always provide healthy options.
TTW: Branding and campaigns plays an important role in marketing strategies. What is your take in using the help of social media marketing and digital media marketing to promote Hotel business?
Konstantin Zeuke : Kempinski Hotel Mall of the Emirates believes strongly in social media and we have a loyal following across our social media platforms including Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. This is a perfect opportunity for us to establish a relationship with our guests. The Social media platforms of the hotel are not used for sales, it is more of a sharing platform to encourage dialogue with guests. We promote our destination, talk about the news in the city, share the news of our sister properties etc. We think of social media as social not just a selling tool as it enables you to have a dialogue with your audience.
On the other hand, digital is a main focus for the hotel.
TTW: What is the recent demand of luxury travellers before they check-in to any high-end hotels?
Konstantin Zeuke : Guests are looking for spacious rooms and that extra level of service. The rooms of the hotel are continuously getting enhanced to respond to our guests’ needs since comfort is an important component of satisfaction. The mattresses for example are getting bigger, thicker and more advanced by adapting to the body shape etc. We offer a large range of pillows from the anti allergic to the ergonomic passing by feather, without feather etc… Everything to make sure that our guests’ demands are met in the best possible way.
We have seen an increase in technology demand from our guests as well; from plugs and devices to high speed internet and bigger TV screens in the rooms. As of next year we will introduce Ipads in our rooms from which the guests will be able to control the AC, television, order their room service to name a few… We are constantly adapting our offer to our guests by providing the latest in-room technology.
TTW: What measures should hoteliers adopt to boost the tourism more in a sustainable way?
Konstantin Zeuke : At Kempinski Hotel Mall of The Emirates we are extremely passionate about the environment and we are constantly on the lookout for new ideas and actions we can take towards a greener and more sustainable environment. For example we are the first five star hotel which is certified with LEED (Silver) and participate every year in various charity events such as the Christmas Stollen Cake Sale where all the benefits are donated to Dubai Center for Special Needs.
TTW: Kempinski’s next big thing in the offing?
Konstantin Zeuke : 2013 has been a wonderful year for Kempinski Hotel Mall of the Emirates with the enhancement of our lobby, the extension of our driveway and the opening of our new Spanish restaurant Salero Tapas & Bodega. 2014 looks even brighter with two new restaurant concepts to come to life as well as the start of the enhancement programme of our guest rooms
TTW: Which country remains as a key market for Kempinski?
Konstantin Zeuke: The majority of our guests come from the GCC region. We also see an increase in visitors from BRIC (Brazil and India especially) as well as Africa.
TTW: Please tell us about some of eco-friendly measures and ventures undertaken by Kempinski.
Konstantin Zeuke : As mentioned earlier Kempinski Hotel Mall of the Emirates is the first five-star hotel in the UAE and MENA (Middle East and North Africa) region to receive the LEED (Silver) Certification. The certification is in the Existing Buildings Operations & Maintenance category and the hotel achieved this through the implementation of changes to make its operations more sustainable. In 2012, the hotel showed a significant number of energy and water usage reduction of 9%.
Kempinski as a group has launched a programme called ‘Green Inspiration by Kempinski’ and this initiative gives employees around the world the opportunity to be actively involved in activities that will help their hotel become greener and more eco-friendly in day-to-day operations. Across all departments in the hotel we have extremely creative employees who, together with their teams, have come up with fantastic ideas on how to be more eco friendly. The green practices adapted by the departments are not only related to finding the most organic/environment friendly products to use, but also about water and energy saving, frequency of linen and towel changes just to name few. And it really doesn’t take a lot of effort to do it in a more sustainable way; sometimes it is just about slightly changing our habits and how we operate on a daily basis.
TTW: What are your plans for the coming New Year?
Konstantin Zeuke : We are really looking forward to the next phase of our enhancement programme, which will help us, continue to stay as a leader in our market.
From my side, I will try to find some time to improve my golfing skills ;)