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Fast Five with Innegrit Volkhardt

The owner and general manager of Bayerischer Hof in a tête-à-tête with Charmaine Fernz talks about market potential, new strategy and what’s new….

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Innegrit Volkhardt

Importance of the Middle East market

We have a product that suits this market and has been accepted well. This market is also very important to us. The hotel showcases a variety of suites with several combinations to choose from in addition to our locational advantage and quality of service. Our guests from this region has been in the likes of royal family members and VIP looking for long-stays.

The numbers

The Middle East market accounts for about 13% of our room nights, but, the UAE alone generates as much as five percent of the total room bookings. For 2017, we hope to touch the same number, if not, more.

New developments

The summer of 2017 will see the opening of the new Vervoordt Wing. The wing features 29 rooms and junior suites designed by the Belgian art collector and interior designer Axel Vervoordt. The special highlight at the property will be the spacious penthouse suite located on the eighth floor with its very own spa.

Room with a view

Strategy for the trade

As part of our strategy for the Middle East, we are continuously in touch with the trade. We visit the region at least twice a year to understand market developments as well as meet up with our long-stay guests and members of the royal family. The result of which is nearly 60% of our bookings come directly and dues to personal contacts. However, this year, we took on a PR approach and our focus going forward will be social media enhancement such as interactions with bloggers and social influencers.

Key markets

Our key markets for this region are the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Kuwait, exactly in this order. In view of the political and economic situation it’s difficult to look into the future. Nonetheless, we do think that Oman and Jordan certainly are potential markets.

Key highlights 

  • Arabic-speaking guest relations
  • Prayer room
  • The Royal Palais Suite
  • An Arabic chef