Taj celebrates Palm opening; new projects coming up
The new Taj Exotica Resort & Spa, The Palm, Dubai, caters to luxury living on the Palm and brings its own unique and distinctive offerings to the city. Indian Hotels Company’s (IHCL) iconic brand, Taj, has one other UAE property in the making and has already announced a project in Makkah.
We speak to Parveen Chander, IHCL’s Senior VP, Sales and Marketing, about the new Taj Exotica on The Palm, the brand’s expansion plans and more.
“I am confident that Taj Exotica Resort & Spa, The Palm, Dubai will inspire unique experiences that will draw visitors to stay with us from all over the world – from both the FIT and MICE markets including top-class weddings.
“We have very aggressive plans to grow in the UAE and the region. There is a lot of cross traffic that comes from India and the region. We feel that the two regions have common cultural value systems, so Indian hospitality fits in well.
“We announced our hotel planned in Makkah and we are scouting for more hotels in Saudi Arabia. The fourth hotel in the UAE is in development in the Deira neighbourhood and there’s a very good response to our property on the Palm, so I think we will continue expanding,” Chander says.
“With city hotels and a resorts, the properties are seeing an increase in the bleisure market where guests can spend one or two nights in the city and come to the Palm for an extended holiday. It is not far, but it is a very different vibe. Our city hotels also remain very popular.”
When asked about the other brands in the IHCL portfolio for this region, Chander says: “The Taj is the Holy Grail - it is the brand people know and understand. We have other brands such as Vivanta, a fresh young brand, we are scouting for hotels in this category. We also have 18 SeleQtions hotels in India and the lean luxury brand Ginger, which can be a great opportunity, but would take time to grow.”
The pandemic has changed the way we live, Chander says. “I think staycations will remain big as taking a break for a couple of days can completely rewire you. Similarly going back to the bleisure market, working from a different environment, changing the location of your desk, helps you work differently.
“We haven’t, at least in India, seen a dip in staycations. Most of the staycations do happen at the weekend, which for a corporate hotel is good, but what you will have to do, is continuously create experiences to enable to engage them,” says Chander.