Xavier De­saulles

The Club Med CEO of East and South Asia & Pa­cific on the po­ten­tial of the all-in­clu­sive re­sort in the Asian mar­ket.

Golf Vacations (Malaysia) - - Journal - BY JEREMY THESEIR A

Born in Paris, Xavier De­saulles spent 15 years of his child­hood in the French Alps. Given the en­vi­ron­ment he grew up in, Xavier was a keen skier back in the day. Nowa­days, you’ll ei­ther find the fa­ther-of-three play­ing ten­nis, on the golf course or out for a run with his wife.

“I’m into run­ning now be­cause I see Sin­ga­pore­ans run­ning all the time,” he jokes.

Cur­rently based in the sunny equa­to­rial is­land, the French and Swiss na­tional grew up with Club Med and was pleased to share how his kids can now en­joy the same ex­pe­ri­ence he had as a kid. It was his fas­ci­na­tion with the brand’s unique way of rein­vent­ing hap­pi­ness that made his cur­rent role an ap­peal­ing one.

“I am mar­ried with three kids and I’m very happy that they get to tour the var­i­ous prop­er­ties across Asia. They pre­fer that over wines and spir­its trad­ing which I did for 14 years.”

Just un­der two years into his stint, Xavier has al­ready over­seen the de­vel­op­ment of 14 Club Med vil­lages around the re­gion and is fo­cused on ac­cel­er­at­ing the de­vel­op­ment of Club Med at a rate of one re­sort per year within the next five years.

The mar­ket in Asia, par­tic­u­larly the mil­len­ni­als, have been iden­ti­fied as a key tar­get in the growth of Club Med in this re­gion.

“60 per­cent of the world mil­len­ni­als are in Asia and there is a huge po­ten­tial for us to re­cruit tal­ent and at­tract vis­i­tors to our vil­lages.”

Based on es­ti­mates, about half of these will be­come par­ents. The for­mula that Club Med presents is ideal and unique for Asian mil­len­nial fam­i­lies.

As part of its ex­pan­sion, Club Med has al­ready opened a moun­tain re­sort in Hokkaido, with fur­ther plans to ex­pand to Krabi, South Korea, In­done­sia and Viet­nam.

Club Med has been very suc­cess­ful, par­tic­u­larly due to its for­mula that has been hard to repli­cate. How­ever, main­tan­ing it poses an­other chal­lenge.

“In Bin­tan, we have over 120 GOS and 220 staff liv­ing within the re­sort. The chal­lenge is to have a blend of tal­ents com­ing here ev­ery sea­son and to con­tinue sell­ing the Club Med for­mula to our guests.”

In March, Club Med Bin­tan was cho­sen as the des­ti­na­tion to an­nounce their part­ner­ship with French cloth­ing com­pany, La­coste.

“We share the same French roots as land­mark brands which were cre­ated in France. The de­sign of their clothes are very unique and we share a pre­mium at­ti­tude.”

From the 70 re­sorts world­wide, the Asian des­ti­na­tions are be­com­ing in­creas­ingly pop­u­lar and have re­ceived the high­est feed­back.

“Each re­sort is dif­fer­ent and has its own per­son­al­ity, with must­try ex­pe­ri­ences that are unique to ev­ery re­sort. For ex­am­ple, Club Med Bin­tan is known as a well­ness re­treat with of­fer­ings such as yoga by the beach and the As­mara Spa. In Phuket, they pro­vide a Thai ex­pe­ri­ence with Thai box­ing and cook­ing classes.”

With its in­creas­ing pres­ence in Asia, Club Med is fo­cused on their core busi­ness as a global re­sorts op­er­a­tor.

“We would like to fo­cus on La­coste first be­cause we want to do part­ner­ships right, but we are al­ways in­teresed to see what other brands have to of­fer.”

INSET: Xavier De­saulles, CEO of Club Med East and South Asia and Pa­cific.

CLOCK­WISE FROM TOP: Par­tic­i­pants at the Club Med x La­coste launch tee­ing off at Ria Bin­tan Golf Club; Guests pos­ing with La­coste’s LET am­bas­sador and her caddy; Club Med guests en­joy­ing a break at the Ria Bin­tan club­house; Pre­sent­ing the new

Club Med x La­coste part­ner­ship.

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