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July 21, 2008

The new address

How did Emaar Hospitality Group come about, what is its vision and how does it aims to become a major player in the region?


Emaar Hospitality Group LLC (EHG) is a wholly owned subsidiary of Emaar Properties PJSC, the Dubai-based global property developer, and manages Emaar’s hospitality and leisure projects across the region.


Emaar has diversified into hospitality and leisure in line with its Vision 2010 to become one of the most valuable companies in the world. With total assets of development valued at US$1 billion, EHG owns and manages a diversified portfolio of hospitality assets such as hotels, serviced residences, golf resorts, a polo and equestrian club, recreation clubs, and the Dubai Marina Yacht Club and Marinas.


EHG partners with hospitality operators such as Southern Sun in managing respective businesses. Southern Sun, Africa’s leading hotel group, currently manages and operates two properties – Al Manzil and Qamardeen Hotels at The Old Town in Downtown Burj Dubai. The two hotels offer 21 suites and over 350 rooms as well as a host of amenities.


EHG’s vision is to complement the efforts of Emaar to develop integrated lifestyle communities by strengthening the hospitality and leisure business. At the same time, EHG will develop its own footprint globally through its varied roster of projects.


EHG’s diverse portfolio makes it a full-spectrum hospitality company, thus asserting its presence as a key player in the region. EHG recently launched The Address Hotels & Resorts, a five-star premium hotel brand.


What is the rationale of the brand name ‘The Address’?

The Address Hotels & Resorts brings a new identity to the hospitality and service offering of Dubai and the region. It also marks the integration of EHG’s offerings to provide the entire gamut of services including operating hotels and resorts.


The brand name ‘The Address’, was specifically chosen to align with the hotel’s brand positioning ‘Where Life Happens’ signifying the place to be to do business, relax, spend time with family, and socialise… in essence, anything guests require. This positioning fully leverages the parent company’s structure and maximises the use of Emaar’s fully integrated lifestyle communities. It further signifies ease in the use of the facilities and surroundings, where familiarity is key.


The Address will feature a bouquet of experiences offering a unique essence for business and leisure travellers within its properties. The Address will have a presence in all markets where Emaar Properties has a geographic footprint, starting off with three properties in Downtown Burj Dubai and Dubai Marina. These will be branded The Address, Downtown Burj Dubai; The Address, Dubai Mall and The Address, Dubai Marina. The Address is a modern brand that focuses on a ‘one size fits one’ strategy where benefits to guests are the priority.


What are some of the specifics that go into launching a ‘home-grown’ brand of hospitality?

The basis of any brand building is identifying the right niche. As with any business, hospitality is about acquiring the expertise and experience by having a strong team of professionals. This is the cornerstone of our development approach – hire the best people, define our service standards and assure customers a different experience.


Earlier, we joined hands with Giorgio Armani S.p.A to open Armani Hotels & Resorts across key international cities. We also partnered with various international hotel operators to manage our properties. This was complemented by the launch of The Address Hotels & Resorts brand. These associations instantly create a brand connection for Emaar. There will be concerted efforts – across the entire platform – to build and grow our brands.


Will ‘The Address’ be limited to Emaar developments only?

No, The Address Hotels & Resorts will expand outside of Emaar developments and will position itself as a premier global hotel brand in key gateway cities. The addition of The Address completes Emaar Hospitality Group’s portfolio as a full-service hospitality company.


At the ATM press conference, you said “The Address will set itself apart from other chains.” Can you explain the brand differential?

The three key differentiating factors which will be our competitive advantage are 1) Location, 2) Service, and 3) Benefits.


Location: This is about obtaining key property positions in each and every city, which we can achieve and maximise with our parent company growth strategy and developments of lifestyle communities. Our properties in Dubai illustrate this perfectly with prime locations in Downtown Burj Dubai and Dubai Marina.


Service: The beauty of starting a brand from scratch is that we can develop all systems, processes, hiring and training from the beginning. Emaar Hospitality Group has hired specialists and professionals from all over the world to develop ground-breaking differentials in service to ensure our guests experiences will be of an extremely high standard. Furthermore, there are no barriers to this as everything is new from the people and the talent to new ideas.


Benefits: The experience at The Address will ensure guests notice the benefits of our facilities rather than be told about our features. We will have top quality meeting, dining, spa and guestroom facilities like all five-star hotel groups, but the way we deliver these and present these will ensure guests maximise their use and make their stay more memorable, enjoyable and convenient. Furthermore, the nearby facilities such as shopping, dining, attractions and entertainment add major benefits to the guests’ stay at The Address.


How are the market segments being addressed? And how are you targeting the meetings and incentives market.

The four brand extensions have been developed with a view to cater for the different market segments. All our brand extensions also find appeal for the meetings sector – given the strategic location of our properties.


For example, the urban properties in Dubai – The Address, Downtown Burj Dubai will be an ideal destination for the meetings sector given its proximity to the business hubs and exhibition centres in Dubai. The Address, Dubai Marina, with its marina environment, will also appeal to business planning incentive travel destinations for their clients.


To particularly channel the meetings and incentive market, our offices in the key feeder markets will not only promote Dubai’s attraction as a meetings market but also showcase the facilities offered.

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