Cen­tara ‘cosies’ up to In­dia

Cen­tara Ho­tels & Re­sorts or­gan­ised its first road­show in In­dia to ap­prise agents about the var­i­ous of­fer­ings by the group and their up­com­ing brand ‘Cosi’.

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Lead­ing a del­e­ga­tion of rep­re­sen­ta­tives from their var­i­ous prop­er­ties to Delhi and Mum­bai was Paul Wil­son, Vice Pres­i­dent Sales, Cen­tara Ho­tels & Re­sorts. Ad­dress­ing the travel trade in Delhi, Wil­son said, “In­dia is a grow­ing mar­ket, and I be­lieve that ev­ery brand has to be In­dia ready. While In­dia has been a grow­ing mar­ket for us, we still don’t know ev­ery­thing about the In­dian mar­ket and that’s why we came here with the road­show. We are here to learn and build re­la­tion­ships with all the key peo­ple in the In­dia mar­ket.”

Talk­ing about Cen­tara as a brand, he said that be­ing a fam­ily-owned brand makes them value ev­ery guest. “We are Thai and we are in­fused with Thai­ness through­out the brand. We have six brands, which cater to ev­ery­thing from as­pi­ra­tional five-star to re­spectable three-star,” he added. Wil­son in­formed that they are look­ing at ex­pand­ing their port­fo­lio by launch­ing their sixth brand. “We will be open­ing our sixth brand ‘Cosi’, which is an af­ford­able lifestyle brand, with its first prop­erty open­ing in Sa­mui. We have had a very ex­cit­ing year, and in the last 18 months our foot­print has ex­panded con­sid­er­ably. We now have ho­tels in Viet­nam and Mal­dives, which will have more from us. We re­cently opened in the Mid­dle East and are open­ing in China in two years. We opened our first four-star ho­tel in Mus­cat (Oman), and we will be open­ing a prop­erty in Doha (Qatar), as well as a big themed ho­tel in Dubai.”

Wil­son said that noth­ing is on the cards for In­dia in terms of new open­ings, but they are on the look­out. How­ever, as a growth mar­ket, he in­sisted that In­dia is very lu­cra­tive for them. “In­dia’s growth for Thai­land or for Cen­tara Ho­tels & Re­sorts has been as­tro­nom­i­cal. It has been our big­gest growth mar­ket since 2014. In fact, the growth since then has been in dou­ble dig­its in terms of room nights and rev­enue into Cen­tara,” he added.

Wil­son in­sisted that they will be work­ing to­wards brand aware­ness. “We have to drive our brand eq­uity. Thus, we just want to be the first choice of ev­ery agent who thinks about Thai­land, Viet­nam or Mal­dives, so that they book with us. We want to make a big­ger pres­ence in In­dia. We are learn­ing about this mar­ket, but we un­der­stand that food plays a ma­jor role on the choice of ho­tels for In­di­ans, and a lot of our ho­tels have In­dian chefs, and some of them even have sep­a­rate In­dian buf­fets,” he claimed.

Paul Wil­son Vice Pres­i­dent Sales Cen­tara Ho­tels & Re­sorts

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