Over the last few months I have spoken a great deal to Rotana’s guests about what you love best about our brand.
One of the things that continually scores top points is our willingness to introduce new and exciting food and beverage concepts, an area we take very seriously which adds value to our hotels and gives our visitors what they are looking for.
Unlike Hotels’ in Europe and the United States food and beverage contributes, in many cases a great part of our annual revenues, yet surprisingly all too often it is the one area of the operation that sees the least imagination and creativity from hoteliers. All we hear is that falling room occupancies are driving room rates downwards, dragging profits along with them, but very little about the significant opportunity for increased revenue from hotel restaurants in the region.
Personally, I am not all that surprised. It is far easier to attribute a drop in profit to a decline in international travel, than to attribute empty restaurants to a failure by management to create a desirable product offering. Here in the Gulf, and the UAE particularly, we rely more on local diners than in house guests to fill our food & beverage outlets but it seems to me that too many hotels simply follow the pack, rather than innovate or look to their customers for inspiration. One only has to take a tour of just a few restaurants to see that there is a severe lack of passion for food and beverage by the hoteliers themselves.
Hoteliers have to wake up to the fact that if they are developing a restaurant in a five star hotel, they have to make it as little as possible feel like a five star hotel restaurant. When you step in to it you want to feel like you’re stepping into an independent environment, like a nice restaurant in Covent Garden, or a street side trattoria in Naples. It’s really not that difficult and it is something we at Rotana really take to heart while working on the development of our outlets.
We recognise that many of our guests are looking for a more specialised experience which is why we also pride ourselves on our award-winning, single-concept eateries such as Prego’s, where you will find the best in Italian cuisine, or Rodeo Grill, offering superior international cuts in a traditional steak house setting.
Essence at the Beach Rotana offers a market-place atmosphere with a wide variety of dishes from around the globe offering a taste of home for virtually every guest or something new for those who want to get a little more adventurous.
In Teatro, at the Towers Rotana, guests can experience 5 culinary styles that always receive rave reviews, from Thai, Indian, Chinese, Japanese Sushi and Italian cuisines. Teatro turned the culinary experiences into a performing art from our chefs in their starring roles. Teatro has remained after 10 years of operations to be the jewel in the crown of Dubai top eateries.
For a brand like Centro Hotels by Rotana, we have developed three unique ways to meet our guests’ food and beverage requirements; ‘C.Taste’, which is a three meal restaurant with an all day dining menu, ‘C.Mondo’ a hip lounge bar offering a selection of beverages and snacks and ‘C.Deli’, a 24 hours take-away concept.
Introducing Rotana’s unique culinary experiences at properties such as Al Salam Rotana in Khartoum and Erbil Rotana in Erbil Kurdistan is something we are very proud of. There are those in the market who question our wisdom when we announce openings in areas where others have, traditionally, been less eager to expand. But we’ve encountered a great welcome from the local markets where there is hunger for new experiences whether it is through Rotana’s overnight hospitality or the international dining experiences we offer at every property. Like our food and beverage offerings, a great deal of thought goes into every new venue we consider and we have been proud to introduce the Rotana name into these new areas.
We have recently opened a flagship restaurant at Park Rotana Abu Dhabi adding to its 5-star food and beverage offering a brand new contemporary dining destination – Amador Restaurant and Cellar.
Rotana’s food and beverage outlets are under constant review, with new concepts being created all the time. Amador Restaurant and Cellar at Park Rotana Abu Dhabi is yet another complementary concept within Rotana’s innovative and developed food and beverage brands, all of which give the dining experience at Rotana a real edge. Our plan in the near future is to expand the Amador Restaurant and Cellar brand across several of our properties within the region.
The new properties and our ground-breaking hospitality and food and beverage concepts have come about after a great deal of research through on-line and in-house guest surveys and, as I mentioned above, through simply asking our guests.
Which is why, every time you visit a Rotana property and tell one of our colleagues what you love about Rotana’s dining outlets, or anything else about the properties or locations, you’re helping to inform our future food and beverage and expansion policies – you’ve helped us to get it right so far, keep up the good work.
This is a regular column written by Omer Kaddouri, Executive Vice President & Chief Operating Officer for Rotana, which aims at presenting the latest promotions and news across all Rotana properties. For any comments on this column or if you wish to discuss any of the topics related to this column please send us an email to firstname.lastname@example.org