Hilton sets F&B development as key goal for 2013

Hotel chain aims to increase market share of local and visiting diners

Hilton Worldwide MEA president Rudi Jagersbacher.
Hilton Worldwide MEA president Rudi Jagersbacher.

Hilton Worldwide has identified F&B development as one of its core goals for 2013, MEA president Rudi Jagersbacher told Hotelier Middle East.

“F&B is a key development focus and with an expanded, stronger team leading the MEA operation we expect to see new developments and new initiatives, particularly in relation to the recently launched Hilton Restaurant Group,” said Jagersbacher.

“We are also excited at the prospect of new restaurant offerings coming on stream with the opening of Conrad Dubai and Waldorf Astoria Ras Al Khaimah and our existing portfolio, including BiCE, Trader Vic’s and Table 9, will continue to be nurtured and promoted.

“Our 2013 aim is to expand our market share of local and visiting diners across our 300+ MEA restaurant portfolio,” he asserted.

One of the new restaurants at Conrad Dubai, set to open on Sheikh Zayed Road in Q2, will be a Marco Pierre White Steakhouse & Grill, which will be operated by Rmal Hospitality.

The hotel will also feature Latin American supper club Izel, with Hilton Worldwide’s corporate F&B team expecting the quality of the outlets to go “head-to-head” with nearby standalone restaurants at DIFC.

Andrew Joyce, director of food & beverage, Hilton Worldwide, MEA commented: “The impact of DIFC has been significant, the type of quality, cuisines and standards we are seeing as a benchmark and we’ve had to look at that and learn from that. So what we’re bringing onto the market in our new properties will be something we can hopefully compete with, do better with and grow on”.

Simon Lazarus, VP food & beverage, Hilton Worldwide MEA added: “We’re going head-to-head with the DIFC restaurants. We’re opening Conrad in Dubai later this year and we think the total offering there will compete with DIFC restaurants. It really depends on the offering. Yes, some people can debate a freestanding restaurant is a good thing, however, if the product is good people will come”.

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