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November 16, 2011

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'Genius' ideas give Marriott an edge

SHANGHAI Marriott Hotel Changfeng Park stands out for its commitment to being environmentally friendly. The 32-story state-of-the-art business resort hotel faces scenic Changfeng Park and overlooks Suzhou Creek.

As a five-star hotel in Putuo District, where a lot of developments are happening and a lot of international companies are moving in, the hotel is witnessing large growth in the MICE sector.

"For the time being, this is the benchmark hotel for Marriott and MICE makes us stand out," says Rauf E. Malik, general manager of Shanghai Marriott Hotel Changfeng Park.

"While everyone's looking for environmentally friendly meeting venues, our green location provides park and river views with less pollution and less traffic. That's something we're proud of."

The hotel offers more than 1,500 square meters of meeting space. It boasts a grand ballroom of 770 square meters, divisible into three sections seating up to 700 guests. Thirteen individual function rooms also add diversity to the meeting facilities.

Malik says the hotel is much more than a destination.

"We have created a cultural and dynamic environment in the hotel," he says. "In our business, we're not a destination, we're a journey. We treat the hotel as a small country.

"We welcome all the major companies and all demanding customers to this hotel. People from different parts of the world, some don't eat beef, pork or other foods. We can ensure that all food is served in an appropriate way for guests with special needs."

Malik remembers how the hotel provided comfort food for MICE guests from the Middle East and India.

In fact, every guest will be satisfied with the cuisine at the hotel as there are various food options, from Cantonese and Sichuan to Western and Japanese cuisine.

"We have the best hardware, but what really drives business is software that can provide everybody a comfortable experience," says the general manager, who has trained a dedicated conference service team with "genius" ideas.

With the simple notion that MICE is not just for meetings, but also for fun, the team works hard to generate great ideas that satisfy guest needs.

Established in early 2010, the hotel's business continues to grow this year.

"In the MICE market, more people used to go to Singapore, Bangkok and Hong Kong. But this is changing. People are picking up Shanghai as an international destination for the MICE market," Malik says.

"2012 will also be a bullish year. We are never satisfied with our business. We always want more and more and more. The Chinese MICE market in the next three years will be fantastic."

Having worked on three continents, Malik is a hotelier with a profound understanding of different cultures.

He opened a new hotel in Beijing four days ahead of the Olympics in 2008 and two years later, he opened Shanghai Marriott Hotel Changfeng Park during the World Expo year.

"The world has put China into the international arena. I'm excited to be a part of China," Malik says.

"By creating the right environment and serving the right food, our MICE events are always successful," he adds.


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