Customisation 'key to hotel sector growth'
Dubai, January 17, 2011
Customised travel experience, interactive facilities and value-added benefits for guests are likely to be the big three trends influencing the hotel industry in the Middle East in 2011, according to Mövenpick Hotels & Resorts.
Andreas Mattmüller, chief operating officer for Mövenpick Hotels & Resorts, Middle East & Asia, said the hotel industry will face growing challenges to provide customised experiences and face tighter lead times for bookings as available airline capacity means travellers can look for last-minute offers.
He notes more travellers are taking short haul trips at the expense of long-haul destinations – although in bound business from India and Asia will continue to grow significantly.
“The Asian market will be a prominent and major player in the tourism sector in 2011, and will even increase and solidify on 2012 and beyond,” he said.
Personalised services and added value were also identified as key factors as price-conscious travellers continue to look for opportunities.
“Guest service customization will continue to be critical,” said Toufic Tamim, vice president sales and marketing Middle East. “We must move from a hotel-centric to a guest-centric approach. Guests will expect their stay to be personalised around a set of choices on offer in order to tailor their visit to their own preferences. Guests are demanding much more from their travels and looking for one-of-a-kind, enriching experiences.”
Roger MacFarlaine, vice president IT, Middle East & Asia, added that the main trend is towards hotel-specific mobile applications, exploring how hand-held devices can transform the guest experience – and again, it’s all set to get personal. – TradeArabia News Service