Hotels should be a family guests feel part of: Dusit International’s Prateek Kumar
Prateek Kumar, Regional Vice President EMEA at Dusit International.
It is not about being big in the market, but about being on the floor and breathing in every moment and provide a family-like service, says Prateek Kumar, Regional Vice President EMEA at Dusit International.
From Thailand to the world, Dusit International has already been offering iconic Thai service and accommodation for almost 70 years. With a special focus on service and guest experience, Dusit promises a personalised stay that enlivens the individual spirit.
Prateek Kumar is part of the Dusit family since 2008 when he started as General Manager of the Dusit Manila. Nowadays he is Vice President of EMEA, one of the most ambitious and expanding regions of the hotel chain.
On the sidelines of TOPHOTELWORDLTOUR Dubai, held at the Dusit Thani, Kumar spoke to TOPHOTELNEWS about the hotel group’s plans for Dubai Expo 2020, its upcoming projects and the importance of reinforcing a distinctive service philosophy when it comes to hotel guests.
Expo 2020 means big uptick in demand for the region
Prateek: Expo 2020 means a lot of excitement and opportunity. Many people from different countries will be hosting the Expo and they are reaching out with a lot of inquiries. As a Thai company, we are in discussion with organizations from Thailand that will be coming to the Expo.
There are not only inquiries from participants but there are also inquiries about apartments and rooms starting October this year. The effects are starting to be noticed early and in order to gear up for the building, construction and marketing, we need to be prepared. There will be a big uptick in demand for the region, and we definitely want to be part of it.
Dubai has a huge inventory but I believe there will be a healthy competition. Service will be the most important factor and hotels will need to exceed expectations. Dusit Thani differentiates itself and survives because of our service and clients value our philosophy.
However, we do believe Expo 2020 is a challenge that will turn out to be exciting. We need to be on the top of our game and make the customer love us.
Dusit International’s expansion plans in GCC, Africa and beyond
Prateek: The EMEA is a key focus area for Dusit International. We will operate properties in many key markets of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) by expanding the brand during the next 2-3 years. We have many properties planned for Qatar, Oman, Bahrain and Saudi Arabia where we are actually signing our second property.
There is a good expansion in this region. Next year is going to be a special year since there will be many hotel openings. Once we finally accomplish all that, we will have a very strong footprint in the GCC area.
Africa is also another regional focus we are expanding to. Nairobi will welcome our second property next year and we are already looking forward to markets such as Zanzibar, Tanzania and South Africa.
Dusit’s hospitality foundations: Thai graciousness.
Prateek: I was born a hotelier, hospitality is in my blood. I may run a regional operation in Dubai but I can’t separate myself from a property. Without the property, there is no fun and it is not about being big — it is about being on the floor and breathing in every moment that is part of the hospitality world.
Dusit’s history and legacy is what makes it a prestigious 70-year-old hotel chain. We are different because of our Thai hospitality philosophy based on a family style. We look after the customer and treat them as one of our own, as part of our family, and it’s the same with our team. We believe that if we treat our colleagues as family, then customers will be treated the same way and feel part of our family as well.
After 70 years in the market, potential owners come to us particularly because of this familiar aspect that lies behind our hospitality foundations: Thai graciousness. That is what makes me live and breathe the hospitality I have always dreamed of and I want to be a custodian of that heritage. The best way to do that is by exceeding our customer’s expectations.
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