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July 21, 2019

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Luxury delivered with warmth

IN a few weeks, the highly-anticipated JW Marriott Marquis brand will debut in Shanghai’s Pudong New Area. The first of its kind in China, the 515-key property on Puming Road is set to deliver a new interpretation of understated luxury, says Angela Pan, general manager of JW Marriott Marquis Hotel Shanghai Pudong.

An insightful hospitality veteran with exceptional leadership and an innovative vision, the management trainee-turned-general manager has been overseeing preparations for the hotel’s pre-opening since May 2018. And as the hotel’s grand opening entered the final countdown, Pan, in a recent interview with Shanghai Daily, revealed her understanding about the Marriott service spirit, the strength of its brands, her vision for the property as well as her passion for the hospitality business.

Q: What are the key strengths of the JW Marriott Marquis brand and the unique selling points of JW Marriott Marquis Hotel Shanghai Pudong?

A: The birth of the JW Marriott brand is a heart-warming story in itself. Created by Mr Marriott Jr in his father’s name as a tribute to his father, JW Marriott actually reflects Mr Marriott’s own understanding of luxury hospitality: genuine luxury service delivered with warmth, which has remained a philosophy since day one. As an upgraded version of the JW Marriott brand, JW Marriott Marquis, boasts prime location, iconic architecture, unique design and elevated F&B experience.

Sitting in close proximity to the Huangpu River and Lujiazui CBD in the Pudong New Area, JW Marriott Marquis Hotel Shanghai Pudong features 515 guest rooms and 3,200 square meters of meeting and event space. An art gallery and a riverside walkway nearby make the hotel appealing to lovers of art and nature. Inspired by the surrounding environment, the elements of rivers and ripples are adopted in the hotel’s architectural design. Integrated indoor and outdoor landscapes allow guests to feel relaxed upon arrival at the hotel, while the rooms offer stunning views of the Huangpu River.

The diverse and rich dining experience is another highlight. The hotel has six dining venues, each boasting a unique design concept. Entertainment functions are integrated into the experience, from interior decoration, menu, to the presentation of dishes, aiming to make an unforgettable culinary experience.

More importantly, the hotel firmly believes “true luxury is created by people who love what they do” and are committed to finding “service artists” for guests.

Q: How do you position a hotel?

A: By combining the strength of the brand and the features of the property, we hope to build a hotel into an urban oasis where warm luxury services are provided for guests.

The Marriott International owns 30 hotel brands in the world, among which eight are under the luxury category. The Ritz-Carlton is famous for its legendary service and exquisite craftsmanship; the Luxury Collection offers travelers around the world authentic and unique destination experiences; the W with strong style is favored by fashionable and avant-garde young generation travelers. The JW Marriott caters to the mindful and fulfilled travelers.

This year, the brand has launched its Family by JW program, which is designed for family members of all ages.

Q: What are your plans to boost its profile as it’s completely new to the Chinese market?

A: We hope to establish a distinct brand image, so we have launched a series of guest-engaging programs to build it. In terms of hotel experience, we prepare a lot of “Marquis” surprises for the guests, embedding warm luxury in the details.

Our MICE service provides a diverse and creative conference services, customized and personalized catering products and services are provided to stimulate guests’ inspirations.

Q: What do you like most about the Marriot group and what’s your understanding of great hospitality?

A: I have been with the Marriott Group for more than 22 years. What has influenced me most is the “put people first” corporate culture. I can’t agree more with Mr Marriott’s credo that “If you take care of your associate, the associate will take care of your guests and guests will come back.”

The Marriott Group provides every employee with a superior working environment and opportunities to learn, explore and succeed, enabling employees to grow with the company. In my perception, great hospitality is to love what you do even more.

Love what you do, stay passionate, connect emotionally with guests and create an extraordinary experience. That will make guests feel that the hotel cares about them, therefore bringing them both physical and mental pleasure.

Q: How do you judge the competition in the luxury hotel market and the challenges you may encounter?

A: Newly opened international luxury brand hotels all boast their own characteristics, and the hardware facilities are becoming more and more high-end.

The biggest challenge in how to stand out from our counterparts and impress the guests really comes from the software side of the hotel, and more specifically, the staff. With people who are passionate about what they do, the hotel can retain the guests by bringing them heartfelt services that exceed their expectation.

Q: What do you enjoy most as a hotelier?

A: Being a hotelier is my passion. My life experience has been greatly enriched as I meet different guests from different countries and backgrounds who share their culture and stories with me.

If everyone is a different book, then I have been fortunate enough to read so many books, and to learn from and grow with them. I have watched the hotel transform from just a building into a place full of vitality where employees are happy to work, willing to grow and guests feel relaxed and rejuvenated, like a home away from home. All of these give me a great sense of accomplishment.

The first JW Marriott Marquis Hotel in China, JW Marriott Marquis Hotel Shanghai Pudong will be unveiled soon and we sincerely invite you to experience the true JW Treatment. The hotel is offering guests a premium opening offer package priced from 1,380 yuan (US$205) to 1480 yuan and available from August 8, 2019 to October 31, 2019.

Package include:

One night stay in Deluxe Room, City View

Buffet breakfast for 1 or 2 adults

Earn extra 1000 Marriott Bonvoy points per day (not applicable for bookings made through third party channels)

Enjoy 30 percent discount on consumption in hotel F&B outlets

One complimentary set of Aromatherapy Associates travel kit

Enjoy welcome drink (non-alcoholic) in JW Lounge

The above price is subject to 16.6 percent service charge and tax

Angela Pan’s favorite is hotpot. It’s not only a kind of Chinese traditional food but also a lifestyle, even a culture in China. Beside its delicious flavor, it is a great way for gatherings. Therefore, eating hotpot is not only about food, but also the mood. People chat while putting meat or vegetables they like into the pot and waiting for it to boil. The atmosphere in hotpot restaurants is always lively and boisterous. After the grand opening of JW Marriott Marquis Hotel Shanghai Pudong in August, hotpot will be a highlighted special part of Le Manoir Ling Chinese restaurant.


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