David Garner

David Garner

Travel Daily Middle East talks to the regional director of sales and marketing at Anantara Dubai The Palm Resort & Spa

Travel Daily Middle East talks to the regional director of sales and marketing at Anantara Dubai The Palm Resort & Spa

David Garner, regional director of sales and marketing
David Garner, regional director of sales and marketing

Could you elaborate on the key features of the property?
Located on the Eastern crescent of Dubai’s Palm Jumeirah, Anantara Dubai The Palm Resort & Spa is a resort inspired by traditional Thai architecture. The key features of the resort include our 18 overwater villas, which are a first for the Middle East region and have glass viewing panels in the living space through which guests can watch sea life beneath them. Our beach pool villas, available with one or two bedrooms, offer an exclusive experience, each having a prime beachfront setting with its own private plunge pool. The resort’s lagoon rooms are also quite unique being surrounded by 10,000 sq. metres of lagoon pools. Many of these rooms have direct access to the water from their terrace, while the others guests have views across the resort.

What would be your marketing strategy for the region?
For the launch of the resort, we wanted to gain a strong presence in all of our key markets. In the coming months, we will continue to remain at the forefront of the industry as we introduce the many elements of the resort to our target markets. Our strategy is focused on a mix of communication channels, from in-mall advertising and traditional print advertisements in quality magazines, to a full digital advertising campaign, as well as media relations worldwide.

Which key regions would be your target guest market?
UK, Europe (Germany, Switzerland, Austria, France, Italy), GCC, Russia and China.

Over Water Villa Bedroom
Over Water Villa Bedroom

What is kind of market segment you would like to target? What would be your focus on leisure versus business?
Leisure is the main focus for the resort based on the location and facilities that we offer along with an anticipated strong groups and incentive market. We expect to receive valuable revenue support from the website, along with our leisure partners internationally.

What is your growth target for the first year of operations?
In year one, our aim is to establish the resort as a leading leisure product within the Middle East that is defined by its service levels and unique product offering. Occupancy levels will be built based on expanding our distribution channels.

What key F&B outlets would you like to highlight?
We have four restaurants and two bars in total, as well as Anantara’s unique Dining by Design concept, which sees our chefs and personal waiters transform dinner into a unique dining experience, tailored perfectly to our guests’ tastes and preferences. Mekong is the signature restaurant of the resort, which blends Thai cuisine with tastes of China and Vietnam. The restaurant façade is adorned with playful elephant sculptures and inside, guests can revel in the novelty of sitting in Rickshaw-style seating. Crescendo is the all-day-dining restaurant where most guests will enjoy breakfast, as well as lunch and dinner. It’s sure to be a lively place the Crescendo Brunch, due to launch in November. The Beach House will be popular with both in-house guests and residents alike. The beach-front setting along with a resident DJ provides the perfect place for a few sundowners.

Do you see any challenges promoting a resort property in the Middle East?
The Palm remains a popular location for holiday makers with thousands visiting each day to witness this iconic structure. There are no particular challenges currently foreseen. With peak season just around the corner and a healthy occupancy for the coming months, this signals that the market is buoyant.

What would be your focus on sustainability issues?
We are currently implementing various initiatives focusing on sustainability issues. We are already recycling many materials from the resort, for example, working with our partners in the area. We are also setting up internal committees amongst our employees, who will be responsible for monitoring various issues, such as CSR activity, environmental aspects, as well as social focus and supporting the local community.

What would be your strategy for the trade?
Generating awareness and providing product knowledge are key for us in our first year of opening.

Gary Marshall
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Gary Marshall
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