Vincci Hotels is celebrating its 13th birthday, and it is the perfect time to sit down and have a chat with Carlos Calero, Managing Director of Vincci Group, and know his views about the hospitality business and his plan for Vincci Hotels in 2014.
Q. How would you review Vincci Hotels first 13 years?
A. They have been very positive. We have evolved in this time, and we have been able to know our customers better. We have opened new hotels in Spain and abroad, consolidating our initial plan of building a 4 and 5 star hotel chain, each of them with its own personality, located in privileged places at the best leisure destinations.
2. What qualities or characteristics of Vincci Hotels do you think are more valued by your customers?
A. We constantly receive feedback from our clients, and we have find out that they value the unique personality of each hotel: the sensual, exotic feel of our Tunisian hotels, the urban and modern design of those in Barcelona, the exclusivity and elegance of our Marbella Beach Club Estrella del Mar, to name just a few examples among our 33 hotels. They also value the attention to detail put into the hotel’s decoration, design, and the quality of our customer service. We all like feeling special, having all our needs and desires taken care of, and that is what we do.
Location is another key element our visitors feel attracted to. Our hotels are placed in the best areas of the main cities, within walking distance of touristic points of interests. They are also convenient for business clients. At the coast, we always look for privileged locations, close to the most beautiful beaches and with multiple options for entertainment and leisure.
3. What are your plans for Vincci Hotels in 2014?
A. We will continue to consider customer satisfaction the key component of our work, from small details (we have just implemented free WiFi in all our hotels), to the wider business strategy. In the months to come, we will be opening our third hotel in Barcelona, the Vincci Gala 4*, and a new hotel in Porto that will complement our Lisboan one. We will also keep investing on Europe and emerging countries.
4. Considering your experience in the hospitality business, do you think we have put the worst part of the financial crisis behind?
A. The main indicators suggest that the worst part is over. It remains to confirm the recovery rate. In summer, 2013, Spanish tourism started to show recovery signs: stabilisation of price drops, recovery of hotel occupancy and an increase in foreign visitors – 8.3 million last August.
We believe this recovery trend will consolidate in 2014, especially for the holiday part of the business. On the other hand, the urban and corporate businesses (events, meetings, conventions) will need to be dedicated more effort in order to prosper again.