What are the company’s plans for 2008?
We plan to open our first property The Tiara Palm Hotel on the Palm Jumeirah by the end of Summer 2008.
Following that, our next property, Tiara United Towers will be located on Sheikh Zayed Road and will consist of an office tower and a hotel building. The second property is scheduled to be open by summer 2009.
We are in the process of putting up a strategic plan with partners to look at new developments for the region as well as internationally.
Internationally we are looking at the European and Asian markets.
We would like to be placed in key gateway cities like Singapore and Hong Kong, and our recent participation at HICAP has been very positive. China and Thailand are great markets where we see good potential, these markets all have great connectivity with Dubai and the ME regions, which is also an added advantage.
What can guests look forward to in the new year?
We will appeal to the high end markets from the Middle East region as well as the European travellers. We are not constricting ourselves to one market in particular, beyond region, we are targeting luxury travellers, looking for a different level of luxury.
Luxury that means quality in service than just an opulent lobby or the five star rating outside. It is more than that, whether it is the way you are looked after from when you contact us until after you leave. We are targeting individuals looking for this experience. This could mean guests from the European, North American or regional market. It could be business guests or leisure travellers.
What will be the biggest challenges facing you in the Middle East in 2008?
Our challenge literally is setting up a new brand and building a new hotel. Our advantage is that since we have started from scratch, we can develop our hotel to reflect our brand just the way we want to. At this stage, our biggest challenge is recruitment. We are looking for very dynamic, motivated and young individuals and this is why we have put a very aggressive recruitment campaign in place focussing both regionally and internationally.
The brand has its own identity and it will be put in place only with the right people onboard. If our staff does not fit the brand profile, then we have failed to portray what Tiara is all about. What will make Tiara, is not the interior design, it is really the people that work and represent us. We need to find the right balance of experienced staff as well as new recruits who can bring fresh ideas on board. We are focussed on training and programmes for all our recruits.
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