Dhaka : The Westin Dhaka, a Marriot brand is doing really well, I would say better than last year. The occupancy has gone up by 10 per cent compared to that of last year, said Md Al-Amin, Director of Sales and Marketing.
The hotel has received several international accolades. Westin Spa of The Westin Dhaka has been awarded as the Best Luxury Business Hotel Spa in Asia for 2018.
Md Al-Amin, talking to The Bangladesh Monitor said, our major guests are from countries such as United States, Russia, India and China. The guests are employed by multinationals, IT companies, telecom, power plants, social media, corporate clients and consultants of different foreign funded projects of embassies and aid agencies.
The hotel business may experience an uphill situation during the forthcoming parliamentary election. A pre-impact is likely to affect the hotel industry.
But we do not see any negative impact as most of our guests usually leave home for Christmas and New Year holidays during that time. Hotel occupancy during mid-December to mid-January is always low.
This year the political situation maintained status-quo and hotel industry continued to thrive.
On the other hand the volume of government's infrastructural development has created an economic boom, which has made positive impact on hotel business.
During the recent August street unrest, The Westin lost few businesses, but we managed to recover the lost business in later weeks. If the current political scenario remains stable, it will have positive impact on hotel industry.
I believe similar impacts should be visible in other businesses, including restaurants, airlines and banking. Not forgetting to mention the huge number of leisure tourists from Bangladesh in different resorts, hotels and guest house in Cox's Bazar, Sylhet, Kuakata and other places.
This hotel do not have leisure guests from Dhaka, even if they make room reservation, their room rates are like any other corporate guest.
Food and Beverage
The Food and Beverage (F&B) is also doing very good and the business turnover has incre-ased remarkably. There are multiple reasons of F&B doing very good. One of our major expertise is in managing airport lounges situated at the depar ture concourse of Hazrat-Shahjalal International Airport.
Four airport lounges
The hotel manages four airport lounges of Standard Chartered Bank, United Commercial Bank, Eastern Bank Limited and Mutual Trust Bank.
On an average, we cater to 10,000 passengers per month at the four airport lounges. During Hajj season we served 14,000 passengers a month through the lounges.
Our chefs prepare food and serve them at the airport venues. Only cold items, some items of salad and desserts are prepared at the hotel kitchen and sent to the airport twice a day.
The Westin has changed the dimension of F&B service. We have customised the services as per our diner's preferences. Our chefs prepare items based on customer's choice.
This interactive service is gaining popularity among the hotel guests, as well as the customers from all over the city. Not like we give five choices, and leave the customer to pick and choose. The chefs interact with the customer to prepare an item, which gives the customer a sense of belonging to the hotel.
The restaurants are also doing very well. With food items of customer's preference and a fair price range, we continue to do good business compared to any top-five diner restaurants in Dhaka.
The buffet restaurants cater to 80 per cent hotel guests and many local corporate clients in Dhaka.
First, we take effort to maintain the quality of food and also taste-wise. Secondly, constant monitoring and customer engagement has helped add new items in the buffet.
While serving a guest, we are not only focusing on the food quality and taste only, but also to the overall experience that the guest is getting.
Competition is fun! We are still retaining the market leader position in the hotel industry till now staying in this competition, Md Al-Amin concluded.