Interview with Radison hotel manager - Nepal news

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Interview with Radison hotel manager - Nepal news

Hoteliers must join hands to withstand current adversities.

Abhinav Narsingh Rana, 42, is resident manager of Radison Hotel. He holds BTS Hotellerie/Restauration degree and Certificate Pratique de Langue Francasie from France. He has gained extensive experiences in hotel management through several conference and training programs pertaining to different aspects of the hotel industry.

Previously, Rana worked as assistant front office manager at the Hotel Yak and Yeti and manager of Club Shangri-La.

Rana talked with Chandan Sapkota of The Kathmandu Post on various issues related to Radisson Hotel in particular and the hotel industry in general. Excerpts:

How is the performance of Radisson hotel?
Radisson has been able to do quite well despite the odds seen in the tourism industry. Just in the seventh year of operation, and the hotel has reached a position where it is easily selling its brand name. We have been able to win confidence of corporate houses, entrepreneurs, travel agencies and embassies, among others. We are known as a compact hotel and have always been able to serve guests more than their initial expectation. “Yes, I can.” Attitude is embedded in our services and this particular aspect has won the hearts of almost all of our guests.

How did you compete neck-to-neck with already established players through the past seven years?
People always value quality and efficiency, and in the hospitality industry these are of paramount importance. With young, energetic and friendly team we are providing extra value for each penny spent in our services. We have pragmatic schemes and try to meet all the expectations of our guests. Moreover, with our domestic and overseas partners, we launched aggressive marketing and advertising campaigns. This helped to generate customers confidence in our services.

How is Radisson Hotel contributing to promote the Nepalo hotel industry in the international market?
We participate in international conferences frequently – the latest one being in Berlin – to inform prospective clients the ground reality in Nepal and also highlight our services features. We try to assure them that it is safe to visit Nepal and whatever news is carried in the international media does not reflect the total picture. We have been launching new marketing strategies and various promotional campaigns either independently or in joint ventures with established brands in the international markets to promote the hotel sector.

Tourism industry is going through an extremely difficult time at present. How do you plan to withstand this adversity?
We must be optimistic to be pragmatic, for without pragmatism success cannot be sustained. Yes, it is challenging time for the entire hotel industry. We need urgent plans and strategies on how to entice more budget tourists. There is also a need to adopt contingency planning and strategies to curtail costs and expenses. Radisson is desperately trying to get more business by going aggressively in all aspects in the international market without compromising the quality and belief on value added services. Meantime, we need to develop efficient human resource planning and try to achieve the maximum output with minimum inputs.

What are the major problems of the hotel industry?
Getting more quality and budget guests is the biggest challenge the entire Nepali hotel industry is facing at present. Peace should be end to win confidence of our guests. The government too should support us by enforcing strategies that encourage the hotel industry and its associated sectors. If the dismal performance of hotel continued, it is affect not only the hoteliers, but the entire range of business and also the people employed in these sectors. Disinclination of hoteliers to join hands and move forward jointly is another major challenge we face today.

At present, some of the five star deluxe hotels are cutting their rates sharply. Do you think it is sustainable?

No, it is not going to work. For the rates the hotels are coming up with lately do not even generate the operating cost. But, unfortunately, everyone is trying to snatch the same pie ruthlessly. Instead of doing that, we need to devise up strategies that would help us expand the market and enlarge the pie. There should be an independent body to gauge and rate the standard and services of hotels. If this trend continues, it will take toll to the quality of services and in the long run, lead to the complete collapse of the industry as a whole.

Source: Kathmandu Post, April 4, 2005

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