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Thursday, April 9, 2020

Up close with Peter Katusak-Huzsvar

by Joanna Andrews

W Dubai - Al Habtoor City is set to turn up the heat on Dubai. Dubai just got hotter!

Opening hotels is nothing new to the GM of Dubai’s most eagerly anticipated hotel, W Dubai - Al Habtoor City. Peter Katusak-Huzsvar comes with three decades of experience in the global hospitality industry, having worked in far flung destinations like China, Russia, Hungary, Germany and Qatar. Joanna Andrews asks him about his most dynamic role to date.

What has been the most challenging aspect of getting W Dubai - Al Habtoor City open?

There was a lot of buzz and excitement in the run up to the opening date. The fact that it is the first W in the emirate meant there was endless expectations around it. We had to ensure that we lived up to the hype. The challenge was coming up with new ideas that really pushed boundaries. We have definitely achieved that. I have been working with W Hotels for almost a decade, all of which have been in very different countries and markets. This one is the fourth hotel that I have opened so I am no stranger to the brand and expectations of introducing W to a new market.

The brand is renowned for being a trendsetting destination. How do you maintain that edge?

W Hotels have a distinct edge on other hotels, but each W Hotel has its own personality that reflects and showcases the new and next in design, music and fashion within its destination. W is a lifestyle in its own right creating social gathering places where people can escape from the day-to-day rush. W Hotels are about creating the right partnerships and act as a platform where emerging artists get recognition and exposure. At the forefront of design, music and fashion we support upcoming talent and look forward to uncovering what undiscovered young artists Dubai has to offer. This is the W way of giving to the public something new and fresh.

What specifically does W Dubai – Al Habtoor City offer?

As a destination, Dubai has been missing a W Hotel. There are endless possibilities to bring the W lifestyle to life in this ever-evolving city. We don’t want to go with what is already buzzing, that's already done! We want to give Dubai the up-and-coming artists in music, fashion and design so that we are always one step ahead. We have established partnerships with leaders in these three industries across the region to allow us to bring these three passion points to life across the hotel, throughout the year. We are looking forward to showcase exclusive previews of fashion collections, host pop-ups, support workshops, design exhibitions, all complemented with the best beats. This is our way to make sure W Dubai - Al Habtoor City is centre stage for what’s new and next in the city.

What can you tell me about the W brands iconic Whatever/Whenever® service philosophy?

Whatever/Whenever® is the name of the go-to service we provide for anything a guest may wish for during their stay at W Dubai - Al Habtoor City. It doesn't matter what it is or when, from after-hours whimsical requests to everyday needs, we make it happen with the Whatever/Whenever® service. Service keeps on being re-vamped with the development of new technologies. At W Dubai – Al Habtoor City guests will be able to contact our Whatever/Whenever® agents through Whatsapp or BBM. As we like to say, “Whatever you want, whenever you want it, as long as it’s legal”

What are the main advantages of having three Starwood-branded hotels alongside each other like in Al Habtoor City?

The three hotels cater to the different requirements, characters, and preferences of our guests. Having three distinct Starwood brands in one location offers a wide variety of choice and style of stay for our loyal guests. For those new to the Starwood brand, it is an excellent opportunity to experience a slice of our diverse portfolio as each of the three brands is well represented with these flagship properties. We present the opportunity to experience all three distinct brands – St. Regis, W and Westin – within one visit.

What sets this W hotel apart from other W hotels?

Al Habtoor City is on the brink of becoming the new heart of Dubai. This hotel will be the pulsating epicentre of the visionary complex. The fact that we will be part of a destination in itself already sets us apart. Dubai is the crossroads for what W Hotels are passionate about – fashion, music, and design. Trends are set here and we intend to be the front row for what’s new and next in the city. Check-in takes place on the 30th floor so from the moment guests arrive at the hotel, their standard hotel experience is instantly turned on its head. But ultimately we want people to experience the W Dubai and find out for themselves why it’s different from the rest. W Dubai adds an entertainment within the destination. The hotel attracts a very specific clientele to the complex. Those visiting the atrium or theatre have the perfect place that reflects their lifestyle and preferences. W Dubai – Al Habtoor City is set to turn up the heat in Dubai. Dubai just got hotter!

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