We wanted a hotel Southend could be proud of: Sadiq Chikte [Video]
Seven Hotel’s Director Sadiq Chikte spoke exclusively to TOPHOTELNEWS about the motivation behind building a luxury hotel in Southend-on-Sea, and their being included in the Michelin Guide 2019 within a year of operations.
On the sidelines of TOPHOTELWORLDTOUR London 2019, Seven Hotel’s Director Sadiq Chikte spoke exclusively to TOPHOTELNEWS about the motivation behind building a luxury hotel in Southend-on-Sea, their being included in the Michelin Guide 2019 within a year of operations, and the potential effects of Brexit on the business.
On the idea behind Seven Hotels in Southend-on-Sea
Chikte: We’ve been open a year, so this time last year we opened up. It’s been a great challenge. Our hotel project is a bit ambitious for Southend-on-Sea. If you ever go to Southend, it’s not a very luxurious town. It’s not like the Britons or the UKs of coastal towns, but it’s up and coming.
We wanted to do something different in the area and provide a different element to Southend — something that we can be proud of. For example, we like to go in London, in the Middle East, to go to all these beautiful hotels. And that’s the design that we put forward to our design team, and then they created the idea for Seven Hotels.
Big achievements in year one itself
Chikte: The accolades that we received in a year was fantastic, and one to mention is being featured in the Michelin Guide for 2019, a first for Southend-on-Sea. And it’s down to our staff, and the effort they put in. But it’s also down to our design team and what we’ve created.
Effects of Brexit on the business
Chikte: It’s a bit of an unknown at the moment. A lot of our staff, especially in the F&B side of things, are Europeans. They’re a bit worried about the future. 80% of our staff are European, and they do a wonderful job. They’re absolutely amazing in the hospitality industry and not just our hotel, but around London, UK, even Europe.
When it comes to sourcing ingredients and products from Europe and around the world, that’s gonna be a challenge. In terms of our food and beverage side of it, there’s a lot of local produce, but then we have to import some stuff from the European market as well. Our flowers are from Europe; our supplier is from Holland, so obviously, how is that going to be affected? We don’t know.
Thoughts on the TOPHOTELWORLDTOUR
Chikte: I met a few interesting delegates, which I wouldn’t have probably found via Google or through just networking or ringing your friend or people that you know in the industry. It’s opened up a couple of other doors for myself and my family. So, yeah, I would definitely recommend it. It’s very well organized, and I’ll be back again for sure.
Sadiq Chikte was a delegate at TOPHOTELWORLDTOUR London. To attend future TOPHOTELWORLDTOUR events around the world, contact TOPHOTELPROJECTS’ Head of Global Events & Conferences Kayley van der Velde.
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