TTME NOV 2018 - PG 16

What it takes to ace the game

Success comes with commitment and dedication. Rarely would one find such traits in three different properties managed by a single person. interviews Iftikhar Hamdani, Cluster General Manager, Ramada Ajman, Ramada Beach and Wyndham Garden Ajman Corniche to find out his techniques that would mentor the wider hospitality industry.

TT Bureau

In a country where there are over 100,000 hotel rooms to be filled every day, one has to be smart enough to understand how to achieve their own goals while securing their piece of pie in the big picture.

Clever operations

It is a strategy that would never fail in the field of hospitality. Yet, hardly a few realise its value. In fact, it is the core of success. No matter how beautiful the ambience may be, if the operation is unsuccessful, then it hits hard on the revenue factor. One must employ a strong operation to stay ahead in the game. Hamdani shares, “Clients have the power today to make a property successful or fail. If the operation is not good, it will affect your business. So, whatever we deliver today, we will be harvesting tomorrow. For Wyndham Garden Ajman Corniche, the months of June, July and August witnessed high occupancy. Even though it is a new property with many challenges, we were able to achieve 97 per cent recommendations from Holiday Check – known as the bible for the German-speaking clientele. German-speaking tourists depend highly on what others recommend about the property, and Wyndham Garden being a new property managed to achieve 250 plus reviews within a short span of three months.” This is a clear definition of the strength and dedication of a committed operation team led by Hamdani.

Personalisation and loyalty
Ramada Beach is a property which overlooks the beach and has its own private beach on the opposite side, so that guests have ample room to enjoy. It can accommodate up to 1200 visitors at a time secluded especially for the two properties — Ramada Beach and Wyndham Garden. Ramada Beach, the four-star property that has been operating for a long time has witnessed remarkable reviews from guests around the world. The primary reason for repeated guests is the staff and operations allowing the guests more privacy. The staff tends to know each and every person by their names and give their best to fulfill all of their requirements. He explains, “Our team at Ramada Beach is really well-versed with their operations and the service they render is with a good heart and attitude. As I always say, if the team is happy, then guests are happy too and the revenues escalate without any hitch on the way.”

UAE National Tourism Programme
United Arab Emirates (UAE) personifies the real unification to its fullest with its new programme to promote all emirates under one flag. The Ministry of Economy UAE provided the opportunity for those engaged in travel, tourism and hospitality to be part of their Scandinavian roadshow. Iftikhar Hamdani and his team participated and were successful as they secured some good business not only for winters, but for next summers as well. Hamdani reiterates, “We participated as a country at the Scandinavian roadshow conducted by the Ministry of Economy and visited Stockholm, Oslo and Copenhagen — three cities of utmost importance and signed some good contracts for winter and summer next year.”

New business areas
Hamdani and his team tirelessly work together to ensure not just a smooth business acumen to get in more business to the properties, but also to ensure that the operation runs as smoothly as possible ensuring good returns. This year, Hamdani and the team participated at the second edition of Pakistan Travel Mart in Karachi where he was selected to moderate a few panel discussions and was successful in obtaining new business, especially for promoting sports tourism.

Ramada Ajman or black Ramada as known by all is a property that hosted world-class cricketers throughout the years and this year too, the likes of Chris Gayle, Colin Munro, Ravi Bopara, Thisara Perera, Shahid Afridi, Ben Laughlin, Andre Russell, Ben Cutting, etc stayed at the property for their APL. “Apart from this, we also organised and hosted blind cricket and wheelchair cricket, which was another good initiative that drove in many clientele to the property. We are now focusing on football teams to make them stay at the property with few national teams from Central Asia, GCS countries and West Europe at Ramada Ajman,” he concluded.

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