Marriott Hotels & Resorts has created a new restaurant concept that enables its hotels to change the cuisine offered as regularly as every month.
Goji Kitchen and Bar comprises a primary restaurant offering three meals a day and within this, a changeable pop-up restaurant that incorporates the latest design and digital technology to enable variations to its walls and ceilings, entirely altering the look of the outlet.
A fully-equipped show kitchen, designed to cater to up to around 10 cuisines, gives chefs the opportunity to change cuisine concept and menu in this “micro” restaurant regularly — even on a monthly basis.
Paul Cahill, senior vice president, global brand management, Marriott Hotels & Resorts / JW Marriott, spoke exclusively to HotelierMiddleEast.com about the concept, which he says is earmarked for the Middle East.
“Think of Transformers, but a restaurant… that would see the three meals a day, breakfast, lunch and dinner, but at some point in the day walls would close, ceilings would change in one section and there would be a whole new entry to a new restaurant that would be a hybrid restaurant,” Cahill explained.
“So the concept is this micro restaurant within the restaurant that can be changed every month, right, so we’re building the kitchen out so it can be French one month, Italian one month.
“How we build the kitchen line is intuitive to what we are going to do in that restaurant so we would have all the equipment to be able to do Chinese and we would be able to quickly have all the other stuff needed to do Mediterranean — rotisseries and grills for example. All of that’s built in knowing there’s going to be five or 10 concepts that we could use,” said Cahill.
The idea aims to address issues that can arise following the inclusion of multiple F&B outlets in hotels in emerging markets.
Cahill explained: “When we build hotels in emerging markets we put all the food and beverage in the hotel. If you look at Africa we’ll build hotels with five or six restaurants but in the next 20 years there will be more individual restaurants built up in the shopping centres in the communities around our hotels, which then puts pressure on the hotel’s performance because they have almost too many F&B outlets given the surroundings. So the Goji Kitchen gives us the ability to have two restaurants where maybe we had three.”
There are currently 24 Goji Kitchen and Bar projects underway in China, with the Middle East identified as one of the next markets in which to roll this out. “Our teams in this part of the world have been dying for this,” said Cahill.
The concept has been created as part of a major brand upgrade underway at Marriott Hotels & Resorts fuelled by consumer trends led by Generation Y, a group of travellers which Marriott believes “blend work and play, demand style and design, and require technology.”
As part of the relaunch, Marriott has developed a website, www.travelbrilliantly.com, which showcases videos of innovations such as Goji Kitchen and Bar, as well as seeking input and ideas from the travelling community.