I am privileged enough to travel often, and over the years I stayed at countless hotels around the world.
In most instances, you can easily guess the origin of a hospitality brand: From the very American Marriott to the so French Sofitel, the undisputedly African Seen or the refined Asian Shangri La. As soon as you step-in in these hotels, you recognize their national culture without hesitation thanks to unmissable details that give away their origin.
On the other hand, there are those beautifully lavish brands that are developed in the Gulf region – each more stunning and luxurious than the other. When you stay at these hotels, you know that service will be perfect, accommodations and food will be a memorable journey.
While Western and African (and to some extend Asian) hospitality groups developed a myriad of brands to cater all types of travelers – from backpackers to the elite -, Gulf hotel companies built almost exclusively brands to serve the market’s top tier, leaving the greatest part of the clientele to international brands.
These great GCC-born brands are not pushing ahead openly their roots in a way a Sofitel or a Shangri La proudly do: Unless you already know, there is little chance that you can tell you are staying in an “Arab property” when you visit these hotels.
Is it because they believe that Arabian generosity traditions are not on par with world renown French art-de-vivre, Asian intrinsic culture of hospitality or American no-nonsense welcoming? Arab hospitality was born and grew in the sands of the desert, not in out-of-this-world palaces as in Versailles or the Forbidden City. If it makes it more humble, thus maybe closer to the heart, it doesn’t make it any less remarkable.
Reaching the conclusion that Arabian hospitality deserves the worldwide recognition that it is missing, I decided to build a company that celebrates Arab generosity and welcoming traditions: Amsa Hospitality was born!
Amsa Hospitality developed a 360 vison. As discussed earlier, GCC-born hospitality groups cater almost exclusively the wealthiest visitors. What about the vast majority of tourists and business travelers? Why leaving them to the midscale Holiday Inn, Courtyard by Marriott, or Novotel of this world – just to name a few? What about economy brands such as Holiday Inn Express, Ibis, Day Inn by Windham or Premier Inn, among many more? Why almost none of them were born in the Middle East? Why leave the high profits generated by the economy and midscale brands to these mainly Western hospitality groups? It is up to Amsa Hospitality to address all these questions.
Even when born in the region, none of them carry high the Arabian cultural hospitality flag. Amsa Hospitality proudly does.
It is then clear to me that Amsa Hospitality is the best tool to bring to the market a concept maybe not new to the world, but definitively groundbreaking in the GCC: A hotel developer that will not propose yet another 5* or 7* property, but that offers high quality midscale – and eventually economy – hotels which concepts are based on Arabian hospitality multisecular traditions.
Because Arabian hospitality was developed, as I reminded in my last week blog post, by those who settled in the desert millennia ago, we are proposing a unique mix of “no-nonsense” business approach combined with our own Arabian essential art of welcoming.
We prove every day that Arabia is the heir of one of the richest hospitality culture the world has ever seen.
Trough us, at Amsa Hospitality, this culture is to be discovered, enjoyed and celebrated by the greatest number of travelers, first within the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), very soon globally.
There is a need to propose a fresh approach to the hospitality industry in the GCC and beyond, and that’s what we do at Amsa Hospitality: What did we take from the COVID-19 crisis; how can we attract the best candidates to work for our industry – and retain them - during a time when less and less want to join; how can we differentiate ourselves in a crowded market (well… we already started to answer that one!); what about technology vs interpersonal relationships, and more?
This is what I will discuss with you right here, through this blog, every Thursday.
Let’s meet again next week Thursday!