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’.
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