Oetker Collection is adding The Lanesborough in London through a management agreement, bringing the group’s portfolio to nine properties. In a prime location adjacent to Hyde Park, the hotel has been closed undergoing an extensive renovation and is scheduled to reopen in the spring. It had been managed by Starwood Hotels & Resorts under the St. Regis flag, and before that was part of Rosewood.
Speaking to journalists in New York during a lunch at Daniel, Didier Le Calvez, an executive vice president with Oetker, said coming to England filled a previously stated ambition to have its flag in the British capital. He said, as part of a selective growth plan, he hopes locations will grow to about 15 over the next decade. New York and South America remain as key targets.
Caroline Gaux, Head of Sales, said expansion is based on travel patterns of guests at its existing properties, including Le Bristol in Paris, Brenners Park-Hotel & Spa and L’Apogee Courchevelin in Baden-Baden, Chateau Saint-Martin & Spa in Vence, Eden Rock St. Barths, Fregate Island Private in Seychelles, Hotel Du Cap-Eden-Roc in Cap D’Antibes, and Palais Namaskar in Marrakech.
The Lanesborough has 93 rooms and suites, a spa and extensive dining options. Under Oetker Collection management guests will enjoy a refined dining experience at Apsleys from breakfast to dinner, plus a Lanesborough Afternoon Tea. Next to Apsleys are The Withdrawing Room and the Library bar, featuring a collection of vintage cognacs, some of which are over 200 years old. Tucked away at the rear of the hotel, guests will find the Garden Room, a luxurious cigar terrace. The hotel offers seven individually designed private dining rooms, the largest accommodating one hundred and eighty guests for a reception.
Despite being in a global business capital, Le Calvez said guests will find the re-opened property to have a leisure slant. He said, “It’s always possible to do business in a leisure hotel. It will make us unique.”
Asked about its lack of a formal rewards programs Le Calvez said Oetker relies on recognition. He said General Managers know their clients and regularly will speak to each other about arriving guests and their preferences. In an industry where scale is often supposed be critical to fill new hotels, he said loyalty by customers and travel agents has meant despite its eclectic locations there are a large amount of network customers. He said many guests at Fregate have said they chose to come to Seychelles because of Oetker.
Separately, in Baden Baden, the long-awaited Villa Stephanie, a 50,000 square foot health, beauty and medical spa will open January 15.