CPP-LUXURY.COM has recently interviewed Fredrik Blomqvist, General Manager of Four Seasons Hotel Bengaluru, the second Four Seasons Hotels opening in India.
What motivated the choice of Bengaluru as Four Seasons Hotels’ second hotel in India?
Bengaluru is a very exciting city with tremendous progress of industry, technology, research and education. It’s becoming more attractive to business and leisure travellers, and with a growing population of more than ten million, it is also a significant Residential market. We have been looking for the right opportunity to enter this incredibly important market for our future expansion as it’s the nerve centre of India’s high-tech industry, and also known for its parks, nightlife and a thriving corporate scene driven by global multi-national companies. The place certainly held all the promises for our much-anticipated new opening, a decade after the first Four Seasons in Mumbai. We are very fortunate to partner with Embassy Group, who are very committed, visionary and greatly involved with the evolution of Bangalore.
With increased competition from India’s luxury hotel groups, what makes the Four Seasons stand apart?
We are opening the doors with the highest expectations of any hotel. Our intuitive and unscripted service is how we build upon that. At the heart of our offerings and competitive advantage are our people, masters of their craft and with a keen understanding of genuine service, they continue to be the reason Four Seasons has always stood apart.
How important is the branded residences component of the project?
The Four Seasons Residences is an extremely important part of our business model. Homeowners get to own a branded Four Season luxury apartment with all the services and facilities of the Four Seasons Hotel. The Residential team is integrated into the Four Seasons hotel team and responsible for delivering the highest level of service, attention to detail and offering a range of additional services to all homeowners.
Four Seasons’ DNA is about providing guests with the highest customer service standards. Have you encountered any challenges in putting together your team for the opening of the hotel?
Guests and residents of Four Seasons can expect the highest levels of personalised service that the brand is known to deliver around the world, and is unmatched in Bengaluru. And, behind the driving force of this service are our people, who have been carefully selected for their roles. There are several rounds of interviews and we have chosen the best people from all across India and other Four Seasons properties, with varied backgrounds and exposure. 40 people from a group of 700 aspirants were hired – so, you get a perspective on how carefully we vet the process. The challenge is to get the right people
Increasingly the F&B offering of a Four Seasons hotel addresses non-hotel residents. Tell us more about your approach to F&B at Four Seasons Hotel Bengaluru?
The hotel’s overarching dining experience is a celebration of international cuisine presented in an interactive style, with fresh ingredients crafted to perfection and prepared ‘live’ in front of guests. Every dish will be presented in its original cooking style, preserving its authenticity varying from Spanish style grill, stone-oven pizza or bakery live oven at our all-day dining, CUR8 restaurant to the artful Sushi counter, Dim Sum steamer, Charcoal Kushiyaki Grill and Duck Roaster on Level 21 at the vibrant Far & East.
(An energised culinary scene encompasses a host of dining outlets, including Far and East, a contemporary Asian Brasserie offering a tantalizing selection of fresh and imaginative Japanese, Chinese and Thai dishes in a bold, striking space on the 21st Floor. The restaurant is flanked by the destination bar, Copitas where artisanal cocktails in the atmospheric interiors call for attention alongside bespoke sundowner’s on the outdoor deck. CUR8, the All-Day Dining Restaurant is an expansive space adjoining the landscaped, garden exteriors and serves gourmet pizzas from the showcase double pizza ovens with other Italian specialities, as well as regional Indian favourites. The Lounge & Terrace is a cozy, convenient hideaway for light fare and afternoon tea including a range of special homemade desserts by Executive Chef Stéphane Calvet, who trained as a pastry chef in France and Sweden. The Collection offers a selection of whisky and scotch in a quiet, sophisticated setting with a contemporary flair. The Pool Bar creates a resort-like atmosphere alongside the hotel’s pool and gardens and serves light fare and drinks.)
What is the guest profile you are anticipating for the hotel?
Answer – The guest profile for the hotel will be global travellers and well-travelled domestic guests from other parts of the country. Being an urban destination, most of our guest base will comprise of corporate business guests, though we will be looking forward to those looking for a great staycation experience as well.
The greenery and gardens around the hotel seems to play a very important part.
The multiplicity of gardens is our homage to the ‘Garden City’ title of Bangalore. There is a seamless dialogue between architecture and nature here that runs throughout the property. The melding of the softer elements of nature and a futuristic design has been the intent to lend a serene element to the spaces while remaining contemporary. The poolside lined with lush flora and the nearby Butterfly Garden and Ribbon Lawn have been designed to give guests a calm setting to relax.
India has a vast wellness and wellbeing culture. What will be your approach to the Spa?
Uplifting and refreshing, Infuse Spa presents modern, holistic therapies within fluid surroundings. Tucked away in the cool aqua surroundings, our Spa will be an uplifting hideaway for modern and holistic wellness solutions.
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