Luxury Hotels

Shanghai – New York – Capri – Ritz-Carlton Yacht Collection

Girlahead remembers so well her visit to Amanyangyun, outside Shanghai, and the opportunity to meet up with its visionary owner, Ma Dadong, seen above with a colleague, coincidentally another MA, as in Mary.  Aman’s chief corporate spokesman Anna Nash was, by the way, one of the top stars at yesterday’s leading industry event. See below.

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There were precisely 100 invited-participants at the 23rd February 2021 VIRTUAL LEADERSHIP ROUND TABLE, organised and jointly overseen by Strategic Vision’s Peter Bates and Embark Beyond’s Jack Ezon (yes, two New York-based visionary leaders speaking to the world). Anna Nash said whereas a year ago there was detailed pandemic strategy this has been replaced by shooting from the hip, working to ‘less is more’ when it comes to pre-planning. There are, now, hopeful signs.  At Aman’s 33 properties, January 2021 saw much higher conversion than a year ago, and February 2021’s conversion was up 15% on 2020: interestingly, whereas previously personal reservations were heavy on Monday-Tuesday, now Sunday afternoon is high on making reservations.  Aman is finding current consumer planning from the USA is strong for Greece and Morocco.  As always, the roster of Bates-Ezon speakers was unbeatable, featuring such other industry greats as Auberge’s Caroline MacDonald, Marriott’s Rick Harvey Lam, Virtuoso’s Misty Belles and top travel advisors Sonia Davies, Scott Dunn, and Brooke Lavery, Local Foreigner. Girlahead rates the value of VIRTUAL LEADERSHIP ROUND TABLE sessions up there with those from The Economist (whose next session is collecting, and communicating, real data).

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Two other sit-up-and-take-note announcements happened yesterday.  One was Oetker Collection’s understandably excited revelation that it will assume management of Albergo La Palma, Capri, when it re-opens April 2022 after a complete new look. It will then be down to 55 keys, with new pool, beach club, rooftop restaurant and bar and all food by one of Campania’s leading culinary celebrities, the two-star Michelin Gennaro Esposito. (Girlahead must applaud, by the way, the industry-leading method of announcing this additional member of Oetker’s Masterpiece hotel collection – CEO Timo Gruenert, in a monologue, starred in a brilliantly-professional 15-minute video showing the history of this class hotel and what is and will be part of its current metamorphosis.)

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Yesterday, too, saw the announcement of the newly-promoted CEO of Marriott International, Tony Capuano, 55, and as well as obviously being supremely qualified, he looks like a nice guy, with a big and genuine smile.  Good luck Tony!  In your honour, here is a preview of the first Ritz-Carlton Yacht, launching this June: