Airways Hotel General Manager, Sushil Gordon, tells PNG publishers Business Advantage PNG that increased competition will be a boost to Papua New Guinea’s whole hospitality sector. He says next year’s APEC meeting represents a great opportunity.
Gordon says the greater competition has increased the attractiveness of the hotel sector in Papua New Guinea.
‘As far as we are concerned we are looking at it that way,’ he says.
‘We are forever finding new and innovative ways to service our customers. Adding value to their stay, and adding value to their dollar, or kina.
‘Business customers want value for money.’
‘We are looking at our business very differently and seeing what can we do better.’
Gordon says 97 per cent of the hotel’s customers are business people. He describes Port Moresby as more of a stop-over than a tourism destination.
‘APEC will have a great impact.’
‘Business customers want value for money. They want communications and good internet because everyone is doing business on-line.
‘Most of the time people are telling us: “Yours is great” but we are constantly improving internet communication.
‘We find that people who are booking, especially on a secretarial level, are always looking for value for money, always looking for a better price.
‘We have to be really on top of our game and maintain the quality and the service.’
Gordon says he is undertaking a refurbishment of the hotel’s fine dining restaurant, Bacchus. In all of the hotel’s wings, the soft furnishings will be replaced and the bathrooms redone.
‘Also, in some of the newer rooms we are planning to change the furniture. And we are redoing the presidential suites. It all will take quite a lot of investment.’
Gordon says the APEC meeting next year in Port Moresby will create significant opportunities.
‘APEC will have a great impact. I think 2018 is going to be a good year for all hoteliers. We are booked out in November, although before that we are not so sure.
‘Hopefully we will develop the natural resources and tourism and the natural beauty that we have to attract more and more tourists.’
‘There are a lot of inquiries and a lot of countries are looking at our hotel, but they will be looking others as well, I am sure. We are hoping it will happen.
‘After that, in 2019, we need to make sure that all the hotels and all the infrastructure that is going in will be utilised.
‘We need to attract more and more people to come back and I am very positive that will happen. Let’s hope that we do it all right and everything goes well.
‘I have seen a big improvement in infrastructure.’
‘It will put PNG in a different light and it will bring a lot of people. Hopefully we will develop the natural resources and tourism and the natural beauty that we have to attract more and more tourists, as well as business people.’
Gordon has been with the hotel for six years. He says during his tenure he has seen significant changes.
‘I have seen a big improvement in infrastructure: the roads to hospitals, the airport, the highways and the general cleanliness in the streets.
‘I know we are not quite there yet, but there has been a great impact.’
Gordon says the take up of mobile phone technology has also been marked.
‘When I first arrived, we used to see one or two mobile phones in the staff. Now I think 80 per cent of my staff carry mobile phones.
‘People are getting more interested in how they can lead better lives, and I think they are.’
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