Service innovations – The Ritz-Carlton Sanya Yalong Bay experience

| October 21, 2015 | 1 Comment

Steady growth among Asian economies has benefited many of its societies through increased income levels. A growing number of affluent consumers are now in the position to increase their discretionary spending on their well being, luxury goods and – most noticeable among key Asian consumer segments, their desire to invest in travel related services and stay experiences.

Within the Travel and Hospitality industry, a brand that stands out in its pursuit of providing guests with service excellence, is The Ritz-Carlton Group of Hotels. Established in 1983 – the Ritz-Carlton trademark dates back to the early 1900’s when legendary Caesar Ritz defined the standard of luxury accommodation, and who developed and operated two of the world’s best hotels in Paris (The Ritz) and London (the Carlton Hotel).

With a global portfolio of 89 hotels in 29 countries – The Ritz-Carlton experience today remains thought after by guests who not only seek service excellence and product creativity, but experiences that linger through lasting destination-, staff interaction- and activity-generated memories. “At The Ritz-Carlton in Sanya, Yalong Bay Hainan, innovation is a key differentiator to other family resorts in China”, says Hugo Montanari – the resorts’ Hotel Manager. “The approach to innovation is based on close observation of guests and their surroundings – looking for inspiration to invent new experiential content – thereby adding value to their overall stay experience. Most importantly we endeavor to make every service encounter relevant to the individual guest, thus avoiding a standardized approach to the service delivery”, Montanari explains.

Service innovations – The Ritz-Carlton Sanya Yalong Bay experience

Service innovations – The Ritz-Carlton Sanya Yalong Bay, Hugo Montanari Hotel Manager

An experienced hotelier with a degree from the famous Ecole hôtelière de Lausanne [Hotel School] in Switzrland, Montanari and his professional team of “Ladies and Gentlemen” [the Ritz-Carlton way of referring to staff a swell as their guests] – practice meaningful service innovation on an on-going basis. Montanari illustrates that a simple but highly effective motto for our staff is “waking up everyday with a fresh pair of eyes. In other words, how can we stay relevant to our guests – everyday / every time? For example, we observed our Chinese guests – who love to walk around our extensive grounds that they get up early to see and photograph the magnificent sunrise over Yalong Bay. We asked ourselves – how can we make this experience more special? We made sure that towels and water is positioned early in the morning and in the right locations. We added little signs to point out tropical flowers and plants – explaining their origins. We gave our guests added photo opportunities – making it more special and memorable. To us, these are all important touch-points – nowadays, we don’t stop with the basics – these are expected”, Montanari is quick to point out.

Service innovations – The Ritz-Carlton Sanya Yalong Bay experience

Service innovations – The Ritz-Carlton Sanya Yalong Bay experience

Service innovations – The Ritz-Carlton Sanya Yalong Bay experience

This dedication to service innovation has indeed become part of The Ritz-Carlton culture while producing service excellence; every guest-facing staff member can be observed to engage with guests – learning their names and special interests so that knowledge is generated, ultimately leading to new and innovative service creations. “This culture among our ‘Ladies and Gentlemen’ motto has become a hallmark for our success in delivering relevant and meaningful value to our guests. In fact, one of our most commonly practiced methods to stimulating service innovation, is through encouraging our staff to envisage the guest journey, thus identifying significant touch-points within every encounter that can add value to the overall guest experience. For instance, guests arriving from large city environments like Shanghai and Beijing, see much deeper meaning in our orchid garlands presented upon arrival – while we have ample exposure to these tropical flowers here, naturally, these are a rare sight in urban cityscapes”, remarks Montanari.

ESPA a rejuvenation plan for everyman at The Ritz-Carlton Sanya

Service innovations – The Ritz-Carlton Sanya Yalong Bay experience

Indeed, profound changes in tourism have been observed in terms of how travelers seek meaningful and memorable experiences while engaging with destinations, attractions and the providers of luxury hotel accommodations. To this end, the luxury hospitality sector is a fertile stage for creating meaningful service innovations, and, as witnessed at The Ritz-Carlton Sanya, provides an ideal backdrop to attract experience-seeking and affluent consumers.

The Ritz-Carlton Sanya, Yalong Bay, Hainan 572000, China

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Category: Destinations, hotels, lifestyle

About the Author ()

PhD in Consumer Engagement - the engagement of customers with one another, with a company or a brand. The initiative for engagement can be either consumer- or company-led and the medium of engagement can be on or offline. With a strong focus on fostering consumer experience innovation, I seek out brands, product, service and experience providers that thrive to define the art of customer engagement.

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