If you're a frequent business traveller, you'll probably have been consulted about where to meet or put up out-of-town colleagues, clients and contacts -- that old "what's the best hotel?" chestnut of a question.
Hotel group Accor is hoping to make the decision a little easier for you if you're hosting Chinese or Indian contacts, with services designed to meet the needs of your Chinese guests now available at twenty-five Australian hotels and Indian-specific services at nine.
It's more than just literally speaking the language. Making best use of Australia's cultural diversity and meeting international guests' expectations of event space and hotel accommodation is a good look for any businessperson hoping to impress.
Accor's VP Australia, Simon McGrath, explains what your guests will find: "Accor has introduced specific training that will ensure our staff are attuned to the sensitivities and preferences of our Chinese guests so that they experience Australia in the best way possible."
McGrath wants at least another twenty hotels to be trained up in the Chinese standards by the end of the year.
"We need to show that we not only want the Chinese market but that we are pulling out all stops to provide them the best possible service when they get here," McGrath says. "Chinese visitors are increasingly sophisticated and they have high expectations in terms of service."
Accor's Chinese standards also include benefits like Chinese-speaking staff, Chinese dishes on the menus (plus snacks in the minibar), Chinese newspapers and TV, Chinese embassy/consulate information, welcome kits in Chinese, and electrical adaptors for those parts of China that don't use the Australian-style slanted flat pin. The Indian standards run along similar lines.
You'll find the Chinese service standards at: Pullman Reef Casino Cairns, Novotel Cairns, Novotel Palm Cove Resort, Swiss Grand, Mercure Cairns Harbourside, All Seasons Cairns, All Seasons Cairns Colonial Club, Sofitel Brisbane, Sofitel Gold Coast, Mercure & Ibis Brisbane, Novotel Sydney Darling Harbour, Novotel Rockford Darling Harbour, Novotel Brighton Beach, Ibis Darling Harbour, Mercure Sydney Potts Point, Mercure Sydney Airport Ibis World Square, Pullman, Novotel & Ibis Sydney Olympic Park, Novotel Melbourne on Collins, Ibis Melbourne, Novotel St Kilda, and Mercure Hobart.
Indian service standards are available at: Sofitel Brisbane, Sofitel Gold Coast, The Menzies, Novotel Darling Harbour, Ibis Darling Harbour, Mercure Sydney, Ibis World Square, Novotel Melbourne on Collins, and Novotel Cairns Oasis.
About John Walton
Aviation journalist and travel columnist John took his first long-haul flight when he was eight weeks old and hasn't looked back since. Well, except when facing rearwards in business class.