DUBAI: Kerten Hospitality - a mixed-use, ESG and lifestyle hospitality group operating hotels, branded residences, collaborative social and business Hubs complemented by food and beverage, under its brands The House Hotel and Residence, Cloud7 Hotel and Residence and Ouspace - is putting their actions where their mouths are by transforming the traditional Commercial function, into a broader role, that includes experiences across the board. From the first owner interaction, to the curation and scouting of their teams, the locally-inspired design and a project’s soft elements, to the way the Group communicates, markets, sells and connects - as human interactions take centre stage in hospitality.
The Chief Experience Officer (CxO) works in very close collaboration with the Operations and Ubbu teams (Ubbu – United. Building a Better Universe, Kerten Hospitality’s ESG initiative) to connect operational practises and processes, with locality and sustainability, packaged in tailored experiences, motivating and supporting teams to be themselves, to create these true human connections. If you own, work or stay in a location, you should get the feel, connect, and experience it truly - easier said than done. It seems to be easier to Globalise everything, then to Localise everything.
Commenting on his new role, Antony Doucet (CxO), who has been the DNA of Kerten Hospitality’s brands for many years and assumed the role of a Chief Experience Officer (CxO) effective July 1st, said: “Brillat Savarin, a French lawyer and politician who wrote The Physiology of Taste used to say: “To invite a guest is to take the responsibility of his happiness during his stay under our roof.” In our Kerten Hospitality way, this would read: To invite guests, is to take the responsibility of their happiness, their emotions during their stay and connect them with our community…”
Marloes Knippenberg, CEO of Kerten Hospitality said: “Antony is a great example of someone who organically creates unique and community-connecting experiences that touch all senses. Antony brings together guests, partners, owners and the local community through purposeful events and interactions. Being a big-picture thinker, Antony has worked hard to inject this DNA into processes, and ways, deeply rooted into the entire organisation. We cannot wait to share our new curated destinations coming out in the next six months in different locations and countries, with a variety of offerings that range from eco-luxury glamping, to hotels with art residency in rural areas, to child-free experience hotels where the lobby is an actual stage.”
Antony who is currently based in Tbilisi, Georgia, for the opening of The House Hotel Old Tbilisi this week, gave some simple examples of how true and real these experiences are.
“Just 2 days ago, I organized a meeting with Tako Kvaratskehelia, who’s 26 years old and the founder of Rukhi Queen www.rukhiqueen.ge. She won the silver medal of London Honey Awards in 2021. At only 26 years of age, she has 400 bee hives and her honey is in such demand that she started to create a cooperative with other bee keepers. She met our 2 Chefs Jaume Puigdengolas Michelin star chef, who’s currently training our local Chef Alex Akopyan, and we will now have one signature dessert with her chestnut honey and our welcome amenities will be “Gozinaki” a Georgian specialty with honey and nuts. The idea is really to embrace, support and celebrate this kind of people”
The Group’s multiple UBBU initiatives will further involve guests to donate time for good causes: A great way to do good, to share an experience and to connect to the local community.
Doucet has helped redefine the Concept of Bleisure, a word he has been using for years, much longer than it has been “in”. Creating environments where Business and Leisure meet, get motivated, can be productive, and never want to leave from. Luxury in hospitality is about space, design harmony, carbon footprint reduction, community impact, staff engagement, food sourcing, to name a few factors. This philosophy has laid the grounds for the curated Experiential direction of Kerten.
Who is the man behind the Experiences’ creation at Kerten Hospitality? Antony’s career launched with Royal Caribbean Cruise Line, followed by multiple roles in France, Switzerland before joining Hyatt International where he opened the VIP & Celebrity Department at Park Hyatt Paris Vendome. After 12 years with Hyatt, he became an indispensable member of the Kerten Hospitality family where from a Brand and Marketing director, he has taken the reigns to support the growth of the Group’s portfolio by injecting the experiential factor in every destination.
About Kerten Hospitality:
Kerten Hospitality is a mixed-use, ESG and lifestyle operator managing and operating hotels, branded residences, serviced apartments, workspaces and business hubs and clubs under its 100% own and developed brands. KH transforms destinations through impactful collaborations both with our own and other branded Food & Beverage, Retail, Entertainment, Art and Wellness brands with a focus on building Ecosystems, and unique community-centric destinations, that connect International & local travelers.
KH manages a portfolio of 12 own brands including: Cloud7 Hotel and Residence, The House Hotel and Residence, Ouspace – a collaborative Social Hub and serviced offices concept. KH has a suite of in-house designed and operated Food & Beverage offerings and employs and collaborates with world renowned Michelin chefs to up and coming local foodpreneurs. All brands have a Purpose. ESG-focused ethos cross its operations and pipeline of developments. In June, KH rolled out its ESG Initiative called UBBU: United. Building a Better Universe, across all its properties.
The current pipeline includes 40+ projects and 4,500+ roomkeys in Europe, the Middle East and North Africa and the CIS countries.
Teams are located all the way from Dublin, through Spain, Vienna, Dubai, Riyadh and Jeddah, and working remote and on project has always been the Group’s remit.
More information about the latest partnerships, initiatives, global industry recognitions and projects, visit the LinkedIn page here.
Head of Communications