Tag Archives: Hyatt

After malt whiskies in the club lounge, we return to our room on the thirty-third floor of the Grand Hyatt Hong Kong, and find a note from the concierge. It’s a follow-up to a request my wife made earlier in the day.

“We have checked with the silversmith in the convention centre, and they can fix your silver necklace,” the message says, “but it will take seven to 10 working days.”

Richard Greaves 1 squareIt then lists another jewellery store that can fix the broken clasp the same day, 30 minutes’ cab ride away.

It’s the kind of obliging assistance we received continually during a recent four-day stay at arguably the finest meetings and convention hotel in Hong Kong.

Our 40-square-metre club room, with its vast white bed, muted carpets and colourings and classy artworks, had panoramic views of Victoria Harbour – and, everywhere, the city’s slim, towering skyscrapers which at night gleamed and twinkled like a giant jewellery box.

The food, service, facilities and proximity of this property to the pulse of the city may help explain why it’s won a swag of industry awards – such as best business hotel in Asia, best meetings and conventions hotel in Hong Kong, best city hotel for business events and others.

But there’s plenty of competition in the luxury hotel category in Hong Kong. Why should PCOs favour the Grand Hyatt? Richard Greaves (pictured above), Area Vice President and General Manager, is clear on this. A key factor that sets the hotel apart is attention to detail and emotional engagement with clients and guests, he explains.

“We strongly believe that to create exceptional event experiences for guests, we must first make the effort to get to know them beyond a mere superficial level, more like a friend,” he says.

Seafood & Oyster Bar + Salad Bar_3mb“How else can we expect to exceed their expectations and create the special details that make an event memorable?”

It’s a familiar theme, often-repeated by hotel operators, but the Grand Hyatt’s success suggests that it’s not just talk. The hotel has 22 flexible event venues which are much in demand for repeat business for meetings, incentives, conferences and private parties, catering for anything from 12 to 1,600 guests. The Grand Ballroom is one of the largest in the city, while the Poolhouse, an outdoor venue overlooking the swimming pool and gardens, can be set up to handle welcome or farewell cocktails.

 

In particular the hotel is a sought-after spot for weddings, of any size up to 888 people. Accommodation is included in wedding packages and there are preferential rates in its 542 rooms and suites for the guests. “We’re honoured to be regarded as the hotel for glamorous events,” says Richard.

“Our service team has always been our most recognised asset. It takes years of training and expertise to take care of the logistics of week-long events, as well as the everyday needs of conference guests and others staying at the hotel at the same time.”

Attendees have much to choose from pre- and post-conference, Richard adds. “The city, especially Wanchai where the hotel is located, has a lot to offer.”

Grand Deluxe City RoomFor example they can visit the Wanchai wet market for a glimpse of local everyday life. Or take a tram for a slow tour around Hong Kong Island, visit heritage buildings and temples around Wanchai, hop on the Star Ferry to cross Victoria Harbour, or shop in Central and Causeway Bay (10 minutes by taxi).

There are 11 restaurants and bars in the hotel, and a great spa (The Plateau) atop the building.

Grand Hyatt Hong Kong’s clientele typically includes financial and tech companies, and it hosts many medical and pharmaceutical conventions. Because it’s located next to the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Center, it’s naturally popular with people attending trade shows.

 

From USD 245

So, what everyone considering arranging an event immediately wants to know: how much does it cost to book this gem of a property? Room rates online start from around USD245, and the Club rooms – offering access to the big club lounge with its jaw-dropping views of the harbour and sunsets – start from around USD 500. The conference full-day rate is from around USD154 per person, but the operators stress that PCOs and other event organisers should contact them to start a discussion about prices and venues.

Siteseer says:

In the pantheon of good hotels in the former British colony, this is up there with the best. To help celebrate its thirtieth anniversary this year, most of the event venues have been renovated, as have the classy, understated rooms and suites. The club lounge, to which we had access, offers drinks all day and a free-of-charge, sumptuous buffet in the evenings. The eclectic mix of Asian and western fare here included pastas, patés, dim sims, seafood, soups, salads, hot and cold savoury taster dishes and much else. The staff were smart, charming and never missed a trick. Because it was my wife’s and my wedding anniversary, a bottle of champagne awaited us in the room when we arrived. And a charming card. We look forward to returning.

More information:

+852 2584 7068

hongkong.grand@hyatt.com

Click here for more prices.

IMG_9071HK highres straightLobby 2018 2mbGrand Club Lounge - Night timePoolhouse exterior med res

 

To the denizens of Hong Kong, time is money, and a minute lost is a potential step away from fortune. As locals will tell you, that’s the main reason the city never sleeps and its streets are constantly busy.

Hyatt Regency Hong Kong, Tsim Sha Tsui - Chin Chin BarIt’s also why the very upmarket five-star Hyatt Regency in Tsim Sha Tsui, set among the towering skyscrapers of the Kowloon Peninsula, has a strategy to keep its staff happy and motivated. It’s the most effective way to ensure guests get what they need, when they want it.

“Every minute counts in Hong Kong,” explains Mandy Law (left, main picture), the hotel’s Director of Sales. “We know that motivated staff supply the professional, friendly and prompt service that business guests expect and keeps them coming back.”

To help ensure they stay committed, the hotel’s employees enjoy flexibility in many of their working arrangements and managers make support and encourage them at every opportunity. “We have empathy interviews, for example, and really listen to what they want,” says Marketing Communications Manager Karen Ching (pictured right, with General Manager Richard Simmons). “And we make a special effort to treat casuals just as well. The benefits are real. The feedback we always get is ‘I feel like I’m treated as a person when working here’.”

Feedback from MICE guests, similarly, shows that the approach works well, Mandy says. One guest wrote: “The event service [people] did not only work on keeping the organisers happy, they cared for the participants’ wellbeing. They took ownership of our event to do the best for all present, regardless of whether they were VIPs, organisers or just participants . . . which for me personally was very touching.”

Hyatt Regency Hong Kong, Tsim Sha Tsui - Hugo's Private RoomClassily furnished

Located in the Tsim Sha Tsui business and tourist district, this is a classic Hyatt establishment, many of whose 381 elegant and understated rooms have a panoramic view of the city’s harbour.

It has four restaurants and occupies levels three to 24 of the mixed-use complex K11, one of the tallest buildings in Kowloon. There’s direct access to two subway (MTR) stations in the complex.

From here it takes 20 minutes to travel to the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre, and 50 minutes to Mainland China via the MTR.

 

The Regency executive club arrangement, whose guest rooms occupy three floors, gives access to daily complimentary buffet breakfasts, an all-day coffee and tea service, and substantial evening canapés and cocktails in the exclusive lounge.

Pillarless ballroom

The hotel has 590 square metres of meeting space on the lobby level, including a 335-square-metre pillarless ballroom, the Regency, which has a five-metre ceiling. It can accommodate up to 400 guests and be partitioned into two venues. Meanwhile five “salons” can be configured to provide flexibility for planners arranging smaller events. With floor-to-ceiling windows, the pre-function area and most of the salons are flooded with natural light, which Karen Ching says keep attendees fresh during meetings.

In line with what some other upmarket properties are now offering, the Hyatt supplies a free smartphone in each room, giving guests unlimited local and international calls to the US, UK, Australia, Singapore, China, Korea, Japan and Taiwan, unlimited 3G Internet access, interactive maps, a city guide as well as a list of offers across Hong Kong.

Hyatt Regency Hong Kong, Tsim Sha Tsui - Hotel ExteriorGreen initiatives

The hotel recently won a medal in the “GreenPlus Award 2015” for a variety of initiatives to embrace CSR. “More and more people are asking about our green initiatives,” says Mandy Law.

These include installing LED lights and water-saving devices in rooms, accessing an “aquaponics” food production system that grows fish and herbs together, recycling glass and plastic, and replacing gas steam cabinets with electric versions in kitchens, allowing steam to pre-heat water for dishwashing machines. This Hyatt participates in a sustainable seafood program and no longer serves shark’s fin.

Meeting package: US 112

The Hyatt Regency Tsim Sha Tsui offers a variety of packages aimed at the business tourism sector. The recent “Executive Meeting Plan” started from HK$868 (US$112) per person, including lunch, coffee breaks, AV support and equipment. The online rack rate for rooms is around USD 275, but planners are urged to contact the reservations people to discuss options.

Visit hongkong.tsimshatsui.hyatt.com, call +852 3721 1333 or email hongkong.tsimshatsui@hyatt.com.

Hyatt Regency Hong Kong, Tsim Sha Tsui - Regency Suite Harbour View

Hyatt Regency Hong Kong, Tsim Sha Tsui - Hugo's

 

 

 

“I hope I’ve presented my property well enough,” says Jose Torres Badelles with a smile. “If I became overly excited talking about my country, the location and bright prospects for the years ahead, it’s because I’m a citizen hopeful for his people.”

IMG_9502Bespectacled, cheerful Jose (left) is Marketing Communications Manager for the new (opened February 2015) Hyatt Hotel in the City of Dreams complex in Manila, Philippines, and he’s as enthused about his property as he is about his nation. “It’s an exciting location now and it’ll be exciting in years to come,” he exclaims.

His colleague Charisse Chuidian (below), Vice President Public Relations for the City of Dreams complex, agrees. “If you’re attending a conference you’re spoilt for choice here,” she says. “[There’s] gaming, entertainment, dining and shopping.”

Just three kilometres from Manila’s airport – a boon for travellers familiar with the local traffic – the new City of Dreams complex, a sister property to the one in Macau of the same name, does indeed have some extraordinary features. To outside observers it looms as a gold-glass-walled monolith close to the Manila Bay foreshore, with the “Fortune Egg,” a dome-like structure housing nightclubs, serving as an architectural oddity. Inside the complex, a kind of twenty-first-century leisure and gaming wonderland reveals itself the moment guests step into the airconditioned interior. “Once I’m inside, I feel I don’t need to leave for any reason till my holiday’s over,” one guest told me.

IMG_9516It’s one of several “integrated resorts” in the Philippine islands. Occupying 6.2 hectares, it incorporates three upscale hotels jointly offering some 950 rooms – the Hyatt, a Nobu, the first outside the US, and a Crown Towers – a massive casino with 380 tables and 1,700 slot machines, nightclubs, 21 restaurants, ritzy branded shops and a quadrangle-like centrepiece of gardens, walkways and three discrete swimming pool areas, each attached to its respective hotel.

The enterprise, costing over USD 1 billion, has already become a significant source of jobs for local people. It’s part of James Packer’s Melco Crown joint venture with Lawrence Ho, the son of Hong Kong billionaire Stanley Ho. It had its official opening earlier in 2015, plugged by a short and expensive TV ad featuring actors Robert De Niro and Leonardo Di Caprio and director Martin Scorsese.

Balls and banquets

Events including weddings, dinners, product launches and corporate functions are a big part of the marketing strategy. An onsite ballroom can cater for up to 700 seated and is supported by a generous-sized pre-function area, two fully equipped board rooms with a capacity to seat 24, and a banqueting kitchen equipped for Filipino, Chinese and Western fare.

The grand opening celebration in February encompassed a press conference for 150 foreign and local media, the arrival of guests on a red carpet, a fireworks display and gala dinner for 400 in the ballroom, with American R&B singer Ne-yo providing the entertainment. The foreign VIPs were housed in the three hotels.

MNLHY_ClubKingCornerThough it’s primarily aimed at entertaining families with kids, the 5,000 square-metre “DreamPlay” facility (pictured below) additionally serves as an onsite attraction for delegates and incentive visitors, with a variety of team-building exercises including climbing. “The incentive business is a key target area for us,” says Charisse Chuidian.

Great cuisine and service is offered in over 21 food and beverage outlets in the three hotels and those operated by concessionaires, says Charisse. There are two night clubs – Chaos, accommodating up to 2,000, and Pangaea (4,000) – a bar on the gaming floor featuring local and international artists, a gym in each of the hotels and spas in Nobu and Crown Towers.

Hyatt classiness

Certainly the 365-room Hyatt, set in two towers, is as classy as other properties of the upmarket marque, if not more so, with muted, warm-hued interiors and marble-lined bathrooms with twin vanities and luxurious standalone tubs. (Hyatt room pictured above). For guests staying in the 45 club rooms, breakfasts are served in eclectic Asian tradition in the club lounge, ranging from fluffy omelettes, coconut prawns and smoked salmon to bread and dim sim baked and steamed on site.

At the main eatery, The Café, robust Filipino fare on offer recently included sinigang na salmon, a sour fish broth, kalderetang baka, a tender beef stew, and cochinillo, roast pork.

IMG_9520

From around USD 330 a day

What does it cost to stay here? Jose Badelles says a room at the Hyatt plus conference package including meals kicks in at around USD 330 (PHP 15,000) a day. “I’ve read a lot of comments about us on TripAdvisor and the consensus seems to be it’s a reasonably priced destination for MICE visitors for what it can offer – something new and different, and close to Intramuros, the historically interesting area of Manila,” he says.

“It was developed to meet the needs of the growing number of leisure seekers in the Philippines and Asia, but also to satisfy organisers looking for an events venue that’s beautiful and great fun. I think you’ll agree the strategy’s working well.”

Prices for room-only at the Hyatt on the Internet (via Trivago) were around USD 153 per night in June. (http://codmanilahyatt.com).

Prices at the 321-room Nobu City of Dreams Manila and 254-room Crown Towers are available at www.cityofdreams.com.ph.

Email: CharisseChuidian@cod-manila.com 

The Siteseer was a paying guest at the Hyatt, City of Dreams.

MNLHY_Cafe2