For the F&B offerings at 25hours Hotel in Copenhagen, the company has partnered with the Molcho family behind the eclectic restaurant concept NENI, which serves Mediterranean-Persian-Austrian cuisine. NENI is currently part of 25hours Hotels in Berlin, Hamburg and Zurich. Artwork: MBDS London.
Your Copenhagen hotel will feature street-level commercial space. What are the guiding principles behind the way you develop a 25hours Hotel to become a destination that is part of the urban fabric?
We would like to contribute added value to our neighbourhood in line with our principle: “Come as you are and leave as a friend.” In general, we don’t take ourselves too seriously; our entrepreneurial spirit is still grounded on creativity, passion and humour.
The UK national daily ‘The Independent’ ranked 25hours Hotel Bikini Berlin as “Best for shopping”. How important are the in-hotel retail and online shopping aspects of your hotels today?
While hotel rooms become increasingly the same around the world, the brand identifiers become more diverse. For some it is F&B, for some it is the spa, for some it may be special services and of course retail plays an important role when it comes to take a part of ‘your’ hotel home. At 25hours we curate small in-house concept stores and are about to develop our own retail brand 25hours things.
Loyalty programmes are seen by many in the hotel industry as key to generating bookings via brand websites rather than OTAs. What benefits does 25hours Hotels offer its returning guests?
Until now, we’ve run a highly-individualised recognition programme for each hotel. However, with the increasing growth of our group we plan to join the loyalty programme of AccorHotels in the near future and to adapt it to our target audience.
Sustainability is a growing concern in the industry. Which kinds of programmes, eco-labelling systems or specific initiatives are you adopting to address this important issue?
While we admittedly are not frontrunners in this aspect, more and more initiatives are implemented company-wide such as urban e-mobility, responsibly sourced food ingredients in our restaurants, the development of organic cosmetics, and the long-running support of several freshwater projects in Nepal through our partner Viva con Agua.
What made you decide that the time was right for 25hours Hotels to become a global player?
Around 2015, we realised that we had to make a precedent-setting decision if we wanted to expand globally. My partners and I decided to go for the global adventure together with AccorHotels as our strategic partner. And we are still very happy about this decision.
What does the strategic alliance with AccorHotels mean to you at 25hours Hotels – and how does such an alliance support your growth strategy?
We mainly have two pillars of co-operation: development and distribution. AccorHotels enables and supports our global expansion, having a huge network and development hubs in place on all continents. Other than that, we benefit from the vast know-how of such a big cooperation in various fields.
What constitutes the ideal city destination for a 25hours Hotel – would you for instance ever consider smaller Scandinavian cities?
Mainly we concentrate on vibrant cities, ideally with a soul and culture or we take a chance and go for an adventure such as in Dubai. Secondary cities are becoming more and more interesting for us, in particular in countries with overcrowded prime cities. This can also apply for Scandinavia. For example, we got to know Gothenburg quite well through our friends from Stylt Tramboli and at some point, we can very well imagine having a 25hours Hotel in such a beautiful place.
Where do you see 25hours Hotels in 5 years’ time – and when will we see your hotels in Stockholm and Oslo?
Our goal is to have a 25hours Hotel in every cool city, ‘cool’ being obviously a matter of interpretation… But behind the scenes, we and AccorHotels do have a common understanding and a very clear growth strategy. Stockholm and Oslo are at the top of the list and we are already very excited about slowly entering the highly appreciated Scandinavian market and to connect with – equally to learn from – its wonderful, innovative and inspiring people.