Taking hospitality to the next level

Puneet Chhatwal is one of the industry chiefs taking part in today’s ITB Hospitality CEO Panel, where the focus will be on the latest strategies and trends in the global hotel business. He told us about his hopes and expectations for a rapidly evolving luxury hospitality sector.

While market conditions dictate the strategies of growth; we see great opportunity to grow our portfolio in the Indian sub-continent, followed by other key markets. We also notice a growth in the luxury and upper upscale segment of the market leading us to believe that there is much potential for growth in the upper end of the market. There is de nitely scope for evolution in the loyalty space.

Another trend that seems to be taking centre stage is offering great design which makes an instant and intuitive connection with your consumer and will be used by brands to define and differentiate themselves in the marketplace. We recently overhauled the design of our economy brand, Ginger, and upped its category to “lean luxury”

Just what is “augmented hospitality”, and how is it applied?

Augmented hospitality is all about using technology to boost guest experience, providing guests greater customisation, convenience and control. IHCL has enhanced its focus on building and expanding its own robust digital infrastructure. Our new corporate website offers information on IHCL’s brands and businesses. The consumer website, tajhotels.com, is now available in four additional languages and the new mobile app focuses on improving the guest experience at various phases of travel, like planning, booking, pre- arrival, experiencing, sharing and loyalty.

What will be different in the luxury hotel of tomorrow?

Guests today equate luxury with personalisation and authentic experiences – luxury hotels of tomorrow will have greater focus on customisation and experiential offerings with wellness taking an important position.

How are you dealing with changes in travellers’ perception of just what luxury is?

For over a century IHCL’s agship brand Taj has been a purveyor of true luxury. From restoration of royal palaces to launching India’s first tiger circuit with light footprint safari lodges and introduction of zero single-use plastic hotels in ecologically sensitive destinations like Andaman Islands – IHCL has always stayed ahead of the times.


ITB BERLIN CONVENTION KEYNOTE PANEL: HOSPITALITY CEO PANEL
Category: ITB Marketing & Distribution Day
Date: March 7, 2019
Time: 11am-11.45am
Location: City Cube, Auditorium A4/A5


Photo: Puneet Chhatwal Managing Director & CEO, Taj Hotels Resorts and Palaces, Indian Hotels Company Ltd.

Hall 9 / Stand 204a