TAKE THREE: SLH LUXURY PROPERTIES

A glance at what Domaine de Manville, Tokyo Station Hotel and Le Barthélemy have to offer

The general managers of three SLH hotels outline their property’s key credentials:

Andrew Spearman
Andrew Spearman

Domaine de Manville, Provence, France

GM: Andrew Spearman

www.slh.com/manville

What are the USPs of your property?

Domaine de Manville is set in 100 hectares of the Alpilles National Regional Park, overlooked by Les Baux de Provence, surrounded by pine-scented hills and olive groves. Set in three farm buildings, around an exquisite swimming pool, the 30 individually designed rooms and suites offer simple Provencal style interiors that make it feel more like a private house than a hotel. The spa takes inspiration from a winter garden and is flooded with natural light, creating a wonderfully discreet cocooning atmosphere that makes for the perfect place to disappear to. Our Chef really focuses on local seasonal produce, showcasing all of the flavours and colours of Provence. Fresh, seasonal ingredients are cooked to perfection and served with the finest wines selected by our Head Sommelier. Ideally located in the heart of Provence, the Domaine offers an infinite combination of leisure and cultural activities including a stunning registered eco-certified 18 hole golf course: we always encourage guests to discover the beautiful region, whether that’s walking the nature trails, cycling through the olive groves and vineyards or exploring the medieval village of Les Baux de Provence.

What makes you different from the competition?

Domaine de Manville is luxurious, but low-key; contemporary, but firmly embedded in its Provençal roots. A haven of peace and calm, it really captures the idyll of rural France and is a true home away from home. The estate is home to nine private luxury villas; three and four bedroom retreats that have all the services of a 5* hotel on hand, ideal for a family holiday. Guests can settle on the terrace and call on the concierge as they wish, or ask the chef to create a gourmet supper while the kids are kept occupied with a swimming pool, bicycles, and the services of a Kids Club. Set in two old gypsy caravans under the plane trees, kids can do everything from sports and singing, to making jelly from fruit gathered on the estate. The property is also home to a uniquely designed 18-hole eco-certified golf course – embedded in to the Domaine and the rocky setting of Les Baux, it is very much part of the landscape.

What’s new at your property?

Domaine de Manville is making the most of its spectacular Provençal setting and modern spa with a new ‘Wellness Escape’ programme throughout the autumn and winter months. Luxurious and low-key yet challenging, the escapes combine tailor-made spa treatments, yoga, walking, cycling and workout programmes with holistic nutrition, naturopathy and detox coaching.

What booking trends are you noticing – source markets, types of clients

A lot of guests are booking late but usually from the key defined markets that Provence attracts, these include mainly France, UK, USA, Swiss and Belgium markets in the summer months. Guests are looking for experiences and so before arrival are seeking our help in curating programmes that include days out in the region visiting historical and cultural sites and of course experiencing the great food offerings in this part of the world. We have a real mix of clients from honeymooners, to families and to older couples look for that perfect retreat

How have the needs of today’s luxury traveller evolved?

Today’s luxury travellers are seeking far more than a lavish holiday – they want a unique experience. Guests want to connect with the local area they visit and immerse themselves in the authenticity of the region, to gain a better understand of the destination. Of course, amazing service and delicious food will always be key.

Tokyo Station Hotel, Tokyo, Japan

Hitoshi Fujisaki
Hitoshi Fujisaki

GM: Hitoshi Fujisaki

www.slh.com/tokyostation

 

What are the USPs of your property?

The hotel blends Omotenashi (the time-honoured spirit of Japanese hospitality) with 21st century luxury. Vaulted dome ceilings, cut-glass chandeliers, polished floors and preserved period features. After a major renovation in 2012, sustaining the structure of the Tokyo Station, much of the old hotel remains including the high-ceilinged lobby lounge, which once served as the first-class waiting lounge, and the original 330m-long corridor leading to the rooms. The Dome Side rooms face into the historic train station, with views of the station’s ornate European-style domes. One of the oldest hotels in Tokyo, the hotel is small in size (just 150 rooms) for this sprawling city. It survived the Great Kanto earthquake of 1923.

What makes you different from competition?

It is Japan’s only hotel located inside a designated Important Cultural Property, Tokyo Station’s 101-year-old Marunouchi building. With a history of over 100 years, guests will feel sophisticated “European Elegance” ambience in every area, compare to other recent modern contemporary design. A unique service we offer is the “Meet and Greet service” whereby hotel porters meet guests off the trains and pick up/drop off luggage directly on the train platform. Although in one of the world’s busiest stations, you never actually hear a train!

What’s new at your property?

The highlight to come in winter 2017 is the completion of Station Square in Tokyo which will be unveiled to the public later this year. Guests staying at Tokyo Station Hotel will be able to see the exclusive landscape from the hotel’s Palace Side Rooms. The hotel has also introduced a digital historical tour using a tablet which allows guests to learn about the historical value of the hotel.

What booking trends are you noticing – source, market, type of clients?

Looking forward to 2020 Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics, an increase in overseas tourists will be seen both in Tokyo and across the rest of Japan. Our current source markets are well balanced with a mix of guests from North America, Asia, Europe, and Australia. Needless to say, the driver of bookings is online (direct, OTAs), and FIT Leisure is our main segment. After joining Small Luxury Hotels of the World in 2015, we have seen growing popularity among the North American and European markets.

How have the needs of today’s luxury traveller evolved?

Luxury travellers nowadays are expecting more and more unique travel experiences, especially those where they can immerse themselves in the local culture and meet locals in the destination. Guests also want tailor-made services. Increasingly, our guests are wanting to book the latest Michelin-starred restaurants, so to meet these expectations, our highly-skilled concierge team is constantly building its network of local restaurants.

 Le Barthélemy, St Barths

GM: Marc Dobbels

www.slh.com/barthelemy

What are the USPs of your property?

Le Barthélemy, St Barths
Le Barthélemy, St Barths

Set on a perfect crescent-shaped, white-sand beach, Le Barthélemy – St. Barths’ newest hotel, is an oasis of laid-back Caribbean calm in Grand Cul-de-Sac. Offering 46 rooms and suites, with interiors by celebrated designer Sybille de Margerie and cuisine by Michelin-starred French chef Guy Martin, the hotel embraces its chic Parisian pedigree while reveling in its relaxed, beachfront setting.  Here, guests will find an understated, light-filled setting compromised of natural materials, with thoughtful integration of technology and in-room amenities by Eau d’Orange Verte d’Hermès.  Additional amenities include a seaside infinity pool, extensive water sports program with instruction and equipment located away from main beach, 24-hour fitness center and Le Spa at Le Barthélemy, a peaceful haven aimed at holistic wellbeing with skincare by La Mer.

 

What makes you different from the competition?

Many hotels are luxurious and beautiful, one key defining factor that sets Le Barthelemy apart is our service. We’ve created an environment staffed with the best to provide guests with a comfortable, yet elegant experience and our butler-style service appeals to our guests, who expect extraordinary, customized travel experiences. Additionally, our design aesthetic is also very unique, as we’ve brought in internationally acclaimed designer, Sybille de Margerie who creates breathtaking spaces that reflect not only their particular location but that conjure an emotional response. Having designed Hotel Cheval Blanc in Courchevel, the Mandarin Oriental in Paris, the Old and New Cataract in Aswan, Hotel D Strasbourg, The Grand Amsterdam, Sybille brings 25 years of experience and has created a beautiful sense of place right on the white-sand beach of Grand Cul de Sac.

St. Barths is also known as a culinary destination and Le Barthelemy’s restaurant has become an island favourite, fusing French, Caribbean and international flavors in a menu designed by Michelin-starred French Chef Guy Martin, of Grand Véfour in Paris.

What’s new at your property?

We just opened this past October but we’ve just introduced a new romantic special for our guests, which includes unique amenities, such as exploring the island by Moke (island car), a custom packed picnic as part of our Picnic Chic concept, bubbles under the stars on our rooftop deck, dinner for two at our restaurant, Aux Amis, spa treatments, SUP lessons and more.

What booking trends are you noticing – source markets, types of clients, etc?

Our client base is typically affluent millennials and baby boomers who are seeking private, luxurious getaways – and our clients come to us with the expectation that the service is butler-style and of the highest standard.

How have the needs of today’s luxury traveller evolved?

Today, luxury travellers are in pursuit of personalised service – many luxury hotels are beautiful but it comes down to meeting and exceeding the needs of each guests’ individual needs. Affluent travellers are straying away from cookie-cutter hotel offerings and are seeking authentic, unique experiences that are customised to their needs from the moment they step onto the property. We carefully curate each part of our guests’ experience – from creating different soundscapes to play at each area on our resort, to providing our guests with eight different types of lighting in their room that align with their moods, to expertly packing custom picnic hampers for them to take on their island adventures and tailoring their spa treatments – our staff strives to provide personalized, impeccable service.

 

 

Your Comments