Kempinski Reopens All Hotels in China after the Outbreak of COVID-19
Beijing, 20 April 2020 – After an early sign of recovery in China, Kempinski has reopened all its hotels there. In response to the new social distancing rules and ever-changing situation, Kempinski hotels in China have taken an online ordering approach to ensure contactless food and beverage services for their guests’ convenience.
During this special period, Kempinski hotels in China implemented strict safety and hygiene procedures to ensure the well-being of their guests, visitors and colleagues. These measures included mandatory temperature checks for all employees, visitors and guests at each hotel entrance; the posting of public health certificates in public areas; daily air purification in the dining outlets; rigorous enforcing of ingredient regulations; frequent disinfection of all equipment; obeying local laws on social distancing in all restaurants and public areas; and complimentary sanitiser and masks for guests and employees.
‘Our hotels in China have done great work in ensuring the health and safety of our guests and employees during the past weeks and months, and we are closely following the recommendations of global and local public health authorities, including the WHO and CDC. I would like to say thank you to all our employees in China for being supportive in these particularly difficult circumstances,’ said Michael Henssler, Chief Operating Officer Asia, Kempinski Hotels. ‘This is an unprecedented crisis for the hotel and catering industry. In response to the latest restrictions, our hotels in China were quick to react and launch initiatives by introducing online ordering and takeaway services on multiple digital platforms and mobile applications. We will continue to explore more online service models to satisfy the needs of our customers and provide a customised service.’
Takeaway and online ordering programmes are nothing new for most restaurants in China. However, for luxury hotels focusing on the highest level of service and guest experiences, a takeaway service is a new experiment. Kempinski’s culinary teams have continued to innovate to provide the best food quality which will withstand the delivery time and ensure freshness by carefully selecting dishes best suited for long-distance delivery with improved packaging. In order to target more customers, all the hotels have cooperated with Meituan and Eleme APP, which are the top two food delivery companies in China.
Weddings are always important for our customers, and in order to make this day special, our hotels host various wedding shows/displays. NUO Hotel Beijing partnered with MOCHATEAM, a wedding planner, to host a simple wedding display from 10 to 26 April in Ballroom A with a table setup with four different colours and a built-in 75-inch LED screen showing a video of weddings that had been hosted at the hotel by MOCHATEAM before. Advance registration was required so we could ensure guests were served in a professional manner and could better control the number of both staff and guests on-site.
Kempinski Huizhou also cooperated with its wedding partners to organise an online wedding show on 14 March. The hotel received 5,303 viewers on the day and a total of 15,000 clicks from the write-up of the online session afterwards. We also received 12 potential wedding enquiries, as the hotel also launched new wedding packages during the session.
Hangzhou is quite famous for its E-commerce business, and, as the hometown of Taobao and Alibaba, it has seen many new industries emerge, like Taobao Sellers and Taobao Models. Taobao Sellers prefer to use luxury hotels for photo shooting to present clothes or products, and they always choose high-level or new opening hotels in the market. Kempinski Hotel Hangzhou welcomes guests with its elegant, luxurious design, and since the hotel opened, it has attracted a lot of Web celebrities, who have posted their photos on social media. Taobao Sellers always likes to choose our hotel for its photo-shooting venues. These guests, with strong purchasing power, like to book a high-category room type. They were also the first group of guests to come back to the hotel after Covid-19. So a unique experience – the ‘Taobao Concierge Programme’ – has been provided for them to enhance their engagement and generate more revenue from rooms, food and beverage and various outlets. In the Taobao Concierge Programme, the hotel is increasing the room rate of a particular preferred suite; developing the venue price for occupying certain areas, like spa treatment rooms, the Executive Lounge, the Diplomatic Suite and the Presidential Suite; and upselling food and beverage packages to provide, for example, an afternoon tea or a champagne bucket in the guestroom to satisfy photo-shooting needs.
Five Kempinski hotels in Suzhou, Nanjing, Shanghai and Hangzhou participated in a cluster flash sale online for the room package from 27 April to 6 May, and 180 suite packages were sold.
Sunrise Kempinski Hotel Beijing and Yanqi Lake cooperated with National Geographic Magazine (Chinese version) to launch a live-streaming project, with the first one gaining 230,000 views. Meanwhile, they selected partners for a kids’ programme for the various Kids’/Family packages. The hotel also became one of the hottest short-trip destinations for local residents for the holiday and weekend.
‘The hospitality and leisure industry is experiencing a big impact as countries lock down in response to COVID-19. We switched our business efficiently, focusing more on the local market and cooperating with famous local food delivery companies, as well as planning various promotion packages for local residents. We always need to look ahead and be prepared for the rebound of the market,’ said Ilja Poepper, Vice President Sales & Marketing – Asia.