Say­ing ‘I do’ with Mar­riott in style

Mar­riott has launched a new pro­gramme called ‘Shaadi by Mar­riott’ to tap the grow­ing In­dian wed­ding seg­ment. Neeraj Govil, Area Vice Pres­i­dent–South Asia, Mar­riott In­ter­na­tional, elab­o­rates on how the group’s in­no­va­tive con­cepts and part­ner­ships help them

TravTalk - India - - HOTELS - ANUPRIYA BISH­NOI

Q How is Mar­riott in­volved in the wed­ding seg­ment?

The premise be­hind the cam­paign ‘Shaadi by Mar­riott’ is to show that we have our fair share of the bur­geon­ing wed­ding space. This is a seg­ment we have been in­ter­ested in for a very long time. There are two rea­sons for that—the first is that we are look­ing to at­tract do­mes­tic tourists and en­sure we en­dear our­selves up to them. Se­condly, we are a global player and the largest ho­tel com­pany in the world. We are con­fi­dent that if peo­ple can un­der­stand and value what we do in In­dia, when they travel out­side In­dia, they are likely to stay at a Mar­riott prop­erty. We see this as a way to grow our share of wed­ding busi­ness in In­dia. Q Would this mean that you’d do away with the ex­ter­nal wed­ding plan­ners?

We are not do­ing away with them, we are work­ing in part­ner­ship with them. If a con­sumer wants to work di­rectly with the ho­tel, we are more

We are now putting bridal rooms in our prop­er­ties. We have also put spe­cial­ist wed­ding plan­ners in our ho­tels. We are get­ting the food tast­ing done for a wed­ding at the clients’ homes, in­stead of them com­ing all the way to the ho­tel. Neeraj Govil

than happy to work with them. We are work­ing with a lot of wed­ding plan­ners across In­dia. The whole idea, from an op­er­a­tions per­spec­tive, is about plan­ning to be able to cater to all sorts of wed­dings. We are now putting bridal rooms in our prop­er­ties. We have also put spe­cial­ist wed­ding plan­ners in our ho­tels. We are get­ting the food tast­ing done for a wed­ding at the clients’ homes, in­stead of them com­ing all the way to the ho­tel. This per­son­al­i­sa­tion has been very well ac­cepted by our guests. We also launched a cam­paign to­wards the end of last year which stated, “If you do your wed­ding at a Mar­riott, we will take care of your hon­ey­moon.” We are try­ing to be a one-stop-shop for wed­dings, but this is not at all about get­ting rid of our part­ners. Q How strong is Mar­riott in the MICE seg­ment? A large por­tion of our busi­ness comes out of MICE. Most of the JW Mar­riott prop­er­ties have large ban­quet­ing spa­ces, both in­doors and out­doors. Even our re­sort lo­ca­tions are big in MICE. We un­der­stand the value of this sec­tor and as we are mov­ing ahead with de­sign­ing our fu­ture ho­tels, we are mak­ing sure th­ese ho­tels are de­signed in a way that they fa­cil­i­tate move­ment of larger groups with­out med­dling with the op­er­a­tions of rest of the ho­tel. We are also keen to be close to large con­ven­tion cen­tres. For in­stance, Ae­roc­ity has a large con­ven­tion cen­tre planned that makes it a great place to be. We are also go­ing to open an Aloft in the same lo­ca­tion. Growth, for us, has been phe­nom­e­nal, de­spite de­mon­eti­sa­tion. We have also seen a sig­nif­i­cant amount of in­crease in our wed­dings and are look­ing for a dou­ble-digit growth in this seg­ment.

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