“I feel Bangalore itself is a fabulous business destination.”

Huvida_MarshallHuvida Marshall, Vice President and General Manager, The Oberoi,Bangalore

For someone whose second home is in fact The Oberoi, Bangalore, it is perhaps strange to realise that Huvida was not always keen on joining the hospitality industry. Studying to be a chartered accountant in Hyderabad, she has come a long way in this world. With more than two decades of experience to boast of, she talks about her experiences and views.

Are you looking at moving to other cities?

I have visited and worked in numerous cities across India as an hotelier. From a bustling metropolis like New Delhi to a smaller town like Jaipur.

Our line of work is dynamic thus our next destination is unknown. But, I am currently enjoying my assignment and tenure in Bangalore.

Who is your target audience and why?

Our hotel in Bangalore primarily caters to a corporate audience. The city is a major global hub for industries like Information Technology, ITES, Pharmaceutical, Finance and even Research and Development in Bio-technology and Medicinal sciences. Thus, there are business travellers across our own country and the world who visit Bangalore on work. Having said this, the leisure segment has also seen a growth in the recent years and we are a perfect destination for such an audience as well.

What is the USP of the hotel?

We represent a perfect synergy of a green oasis at the heart of the city replete with all amenities of a premier business hotel. A rare combination for a city hotel. Our hotel is situated at the heart of Bangalore on the nerve centre of Mahatma Gandhi Road. It is equipped with all facilities of a modern business hotel and boasts of nearly 3 acres of award winning green landscape, gardens and water bodies. All of our rooms and suites too come with a private balcony overlooking these serene spaces. This, coupled with our legendary Oberoi service standards, make our hotel a preferred choice for discerning travellers.

How does the hotel appeal to the business traveller? Please enumerate the features and the facilities that cater to the business traveller.

Apart from the earlier points mentioned on locational advantage and our highly personalized service levels, this hotel gives one a sense of home. A business traveller is hard pressed for time and remains under pressure of work and mobility. Thus, a hotel like ours which turns into an oasis for these guests makes them feel they are at home away from home. The philosophy under which The Oberoi brand functions is that we do not sell rooms or in the business of hospitality. We are in the business of creating experiences which makes our guest keep coming back to us. Our hotel’s facilities, amenities, service approach and product value all work in sync towards this one goal.

What is the strategy to stay ahead of the competition?

Understanding, caring and respecting each and every guest as a person with subjective needs and requirements. Detailing in both product representation and service standards. The latter has always been our brand’s pride and we continue to focus on the same.

What’s the hotel’s philosophy or business mantra?

As mentioned before: We are in the business of creating memories which makes our guest keep coming back to us.

Is there a focus on the MICE segment? If yes, what are the plans?

We are perfect destination for the niche MICE segment. We cater to small to mid-level events under MICE. We have a team which continuously maps and monitors opportunities from this segment. With the inauguration of the Bangalore International Exhibition Centre, phase 1 of the Metro Network and the efforts being taken by various bodies from Karnataka in promoting Bangalore as a great MICE destination; this segment will need more nurturing and continued focus.

What are the hotel’s tech-friendly features? (Complimentary Wi-Fi?)

We have not only implemented many basic tech- friendly features like all our public areas and rooms being Wi-Fi compatible and creating packages and offers inclusive of internet… we launched OberoiE’nhance in November 2012.

The Oberoi, Bangalore introduced ‘OberoiE’nhance’ in our new Luxury rooms.  An innovation in technology allowing guests to customize a host of in-room amenities through an iPad. This has an interface with the 40 inches LED smart television for smooth navigation. ‘OberoiE’nhance’ allows guests to glide through a host of features from choosing movies, customizing lighting, temperature control, browsing the internet and web radio. The OberoiE’nhance elevate guest service to the next level of luxury as it comes with a door camera and the option to open it remotely and without interruption. One can also use this feature to order from the extensive in-room dining menu. To make the stay experience more engaging, the guest can browse features like The Oberoi spa, culinary promotions and dining options within the hotel, guest facilities and even places to visit in and around Bangalore. It also includes information on other Oberoi hotels and experiences. Another wonderful feature for a business traveller is our spacious work desk with its online multi-media hub and universal electrical points. This, alongside our wired and wireless internet connection makes online communication, seamless.  The otherwise functional digital alarm clock in this room, also allows one to play music from an iPhone, iPod or iPad

Please tell us about the green initiatives the hotel has taken

The Oberoi, Bangalore supports the green cause in numerous ways. It provides a near 3 acre green lung space at the heart of Mahatma Gandhi Road. This space is inhabited by numerous types of flora and fauna. We use recycled water to irrigate this space. We keep green cards in our rooms to encourage guests to help keep our environment more green and clean. We have a number of energy saving and recycling projects which have been implemented in all our departments and we continuously monitor their growth and success. We even undertake an annual sapling plantation driven within our garden for our guests commemorating World Environment Day and Week.

Any unusual requests you have come across as an hotelier?

As an hotelier I believe there are no request from a guest which can be termed unusual. We are in the business of customized and personalized service. Thus, we always look at all guest request as a part of our delivery motto no matter how difficult it may sound.

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