Agents key to luxury experience: Peninsula

Agents key to luxury experience: Peninsula
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Peninsula Hotels has underlined the importance of travel agents in delivering a “high end” experience for customers visiting its portfolio of luxury properties.

Chief operating officer Peter Borer told Travel Today the firm was not pursuing direct bookings, preferring instead to deal with the trade. He revealed between 60% and 70% of its bookings from Australia come through trade channels.

“We really don’t want to alienate our friends from the travel trade. They are very important for us,” he said. “We have a high end product. We are not just selling a room, we are selling a complete experience.”

Even though a booking may be made through a global distribution system, it would normally be followed by a number of emails to ensure specific arrangements are made for each guest, Borer added.

He confirmed that Australia remains a significant market for the hotel chain, proving “very loyal” over the years. Representatives from the company visit the local trade each year for a roadshow event.

Meanwhile, Borer confirmed the firm is eyeing opportunities in London, India and, further down the line, South America but he did not rule out the possibility of an Australian debut.

“If the right opportunity presented itself in Sydney, we would certainly be interested to look at that,” he said.

He stressed Peninsula would continue to expand slowly because, with the company acting as both owners and managers of each property, each new hotel represents a “substantial investment for us”.

In June, the firm reported half year results in line with those of the previous year which Borer described as a “very good result” given that its flagship Hong Kong property and one of its apartment properties were undergoing refurbishment.

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