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How Jumeirah Group’s F&B offerings are competing with independent dining venues

How Jumeirah Group’s F&B offerings are competing with independent dining venues

With 20 years of operation under their belt, Jumeirah Group has seen Dubai’s food and beverage (F&B) scene evolve to the dynamic and highly competitive sector it is today. But Group CEO Jose Silva said Jumeirah’s commitment to “dining-elevating the experience,” one of the brand’s three core pillars, is unwavering and has made them the

With 20 years of operation under their belt, Jumeirah Group has seen Dubai’s food and beverage (F&B) scene evolve to the dynamic and highly competitive sector it is today.

But Group CEO Jose Silva said Jumeirah’s commitment to “dining-elevating the experience,” one of the brand’s three core pillars, is unwavering and has made them the “leading authority on F&B in Dubai,” once again.

Speaking to Hotelier Middle East, Arabian Business’s sister publication, at AHIC 2021, the hospitality leader said: “Jumeirah was once the leading authority on food and beverage in Dubai, and I believe we are once again asserting that position. Of course, 20 years ago when we first were founded, dining looked very different. If you look at DIFC, the vibrancy of those kinds of restaurants didn’t exist 20 years ago. Today, we have to compete with those private sector [independent] dining venues.”

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Jumeirah hotels house successful venues such as Shimmers and Kayto which are being exported to the Maldives, as well as Burj Al Arab Jumeirah’s immensely successful SAL concept. From 2018 to February this year, the Dubai hospitality group’s F&B division was led by chief culinary officer Michael Ellis.

Previously global director of Michelin Restaurant and Hotel Guides, Ellis has since left Jumeirah for a new role.

Silva continued: “When a hotel creates a restaurant that competes with the league of the Zumas and Coyas of the world, that’s when a hotel can remain current and relevant.”

Beyond being able to go toe-to-toe with private and independent outlets and companies, Silva said that hotels – and their restaurants – must put experiences at the forefront.

He explained: “As people are sharing aesthetics and experiences more than ever, your brand must be extraordinary on both those fronts. If you are not providing a memorable experience, you may fail. Everything you do in terms of the consumer journey, can be made into an experience. Once you’ve done that, you have to be real, surprise the guest by your creativity and impress them by your execution.

Burj Al Arab.

If you can’t make your [experiences] memorable, you might have a short future in the industry.

You need to create a culture of creativity [in your hotels]. You have to integrate design into your organisation by internalising the design, F&B, and experience processes. I believe hoteliers need a design division to fuel this creativity. The setting, the energy, greeting at the door, that’s all-important.”

He stressed that internal F&B, design, experience teams in hotels should have the same level of knowledge and expertise as seen in the private sector.

As the man in charge of such hotels as Burj Al Arab Jumeirah, Silva understandably has an unrelenting goal to deliver the very best experiences to residents in Dubai and beyond. Sending a word of advice to the industry, he said: “If you haven’t created an experience worth sharing [in your hotel], you are not ready for the digital world.”

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