Orient-Express Hotels Introduces Associate Hotel Program
By Claudette Covey
January 08, 2013 10:40 PM
Orient-Express Hotels Ltd. introduced the Orient-Express Associate Hotels program and announced its founding member, Hôtel du Palais in Biarritz, France. “The Associate Hotels program is an opportunity to enhance our portfolio of iconic travel experiences by partnering with independently owned and/or managed luxury hotels,” said David Williams, chief marketing officer, Orient-Express. “In return for providing access to our highly valued international sales force and strategic marketing channels, this initiative enables us to curate new destinations for our guests to discover. Our boutique collection is uniquely positioned to work with like-minded hoteliers who wish to preserve their established individual brand reputation, but who share the vision of the Orient-Express umbrella brand, offering an equal standard of authentic experience, revenue return and service as our owned properties.”
Associate hotels will have access to Orient-Express’ full suite of sales, marketing and public relations support in 17 key geographic markets, global voice reservations and dedicated distribution under the Orient-Express GDS code OE, and a fully aligned online presence with next-generation websites. Strategic partnerships include the Bellini Club, Orient-Express’ preferred agent program.
“Hôtel du Palais is thrilled to be the first property to be able to call itself an Orient-Express Associate Hotel,” said Jean-Louis Leimbacher, general manager of Hôtel du Palais. “Hôtel du Palais has been a landmark in Biarritz for 120 years and we were looking for an opportunity to increase our distribution without sacrificing our iconic brand identity. In Orient-Express we have found a partner with the mindset of an owner-operator that really understands how to preserve our individual personality and at the same time grow our revenue with intelligent marketing and distribution channels.”
The Orient-Express Associate Hotels program is by invitation only and partner hotels are selected according to criteria, including having an established and iconic reputation, being a market leader in their respective destination, being a complementary fit with the existing Orient-Express portfolio, and meeting high independently assessed quality standards.