‘Hospitality assets require patience, persistence & passion’
For Prestige Group, hospitality assets were always a natural extension after residential, commercial and retail projects, says Executive Director Zaid Sadiq
Did you know that Aloft Bangalore, Angsana Oasis Spa & Resort, Conrad Bengaluru, JW Marriott Bengaluru Prestige Golfshire Resort & Spa, Oakwood Premier Prestige, Oakwood Residence Prestige, Sheraton Grand Hotel & Convention Centre at Whitefield and Twenty Four Hotel have one thing in common? All these hotels under different brands are owned by the Prestige Group, a property development company in South India.
Founded in 1986 by Razack Sattar, the Bengaluru-based Group developed several commercial, retail, logistics and residential projects in Bengaluru, Chennai, Kochi, Hyderabad, Mangalore, Mysore, Ahmedabad, Gurugram, Pune, Delhi and Noida before venturing into the world of hospitality. “As a real estate company, we have had presence in multiple asset classes. Hospitality as an asset class was a natural extension. Our first foray into hospitality was a resort property (Angsana Oasis Spa & Resorts) on the outskirts of Bengaluru,” shares Zaid Sadiq, Executive Director - Liaison and Hospitality, Prestige Group.
Ever since there has been no looking back – with the latest property JW Marriott Bengaluru Prestige Golfshire Resort & Spa welcoming guests in March 2022. “The JW Marriott property was envisaged more than a decade ago as part of our golf resort and once the golf course got ready and was rated the best in the country, we felt the time has opportune to build an upper upscale property with a large convention component,” he adds.
While Prestige is a real estate developer with several commercial and residential properties, hospitality industry is a unique experience, opines Sadiq. “Hospitality assets require patience, persistence and passion. We have all three along with confidence that if we create good assets with good operators at good locations, good valuations would be the inevitable outcome,” he explains. In fact, Sadiq says that due to these distinctions, the hospitality business is cyclic over a longer time frame than other asset classes. “Thus, a hospitality asset will be more a function of valuation over time than ROI in any given year,” he asserts.
Across its different hospitality projects, the Prestige Group has partnered with different operating brands, including Marriott International and Hilton. Explaining how they decide to partner with hotel brands, Sadiq says, “We evaluate each asset based on the best fit for that asset with the brand offering across all major operators. This latter thinking has, at present, resulted in a majority of our assets being with the Marriott Group. Each location is evaluated based on the positioning of the asset on the economy to the luxury scale and thereafter on the prospective user profile and the best brand that will align with the prospective guest/ business profile. The operator results from this strategic waterfall.”
As the industry attempts to revive itself from the devastating impacts of the pandemic, new trends have emerged that need to be kept in mind. Discussing these changes from an owner’s perspective, Sadiq says, “All our operators are global companies. Their emphasis on hygiene has always been very deep. This emphasis is now being progressively augmented through screening, touchless technology, air quality management and staff health monitoring. There is an active blend of emotion and technology that is being fostered to give confidence to the guest in both real and virtual terms.”
So far, Prestige Group’s position as a South India-centric developer caused it to keep all of its hospitality assets concentrated in the southern part of India. Always keeping a forward-moving approach, the Group is now on a real estate strategy that is leading it northward to geographies like Mumbai and Delhi. “This explains our new hospitality assets in Delhi Aerocity and BKC Mumbai. Additionally, the focus on South India-based assets continues with projects coming up in Kochi and Chennai besides Bengaluru itself,” Sadiq avers. At present, the Group has 1,237 keys and based on the current portfolio, expects it to reach to 2,765 keys by 2026.
This article was published in BW hotelier issue dated '' with cover story titled 'BW HOTELIER - THE TALENT POOL SPECIAL'
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