Last year, Shangri-La Hotels & Resorts debuted a new upscale brand, Kerry Hotels, aimed at the business traveler and meeting planner looking for a lively environment with uncompromising service and “casual luxury.” The first two properties are Kerry Hotel, Shanghai and Kerry Hotel, Beijing.
KERRY HOTEL, SHANGHAI
The 574-room Kerry Hotel, Shanghai is located in a 31-floor tower in the bustling area of Pudong. “Work, Play, Live” is the tagline to describe the Kerry Parkside complex that includes the hotel, business/residential occupants, boutiques, restaurants and entertainment. The 345-acre Century Park, Shanghai’s largest park and the city’s “green lung,” is located across the street.
Kerry Shanghai is the perfect welcome to Asia. Pudong Int’l Airport is a 30-minute taxi or 7-minute Maglev train transfer. The Shanghai New International Expo Centre (SNIEC), the city’s largest exhibition venue, connects directly to the hotel.
Training for the hotel staff is unparalleled and shows through every aspect of the property. Staff are trained from a behavioral perspective, with the goal being less scripted and more casual, while maintaining ultimate professionalism. This culture supports the lifestyle brand goal Kerry has established and is very well received by the younger guest profile targeted by the brand.
The tagline is “more room for life,” and the many amenities and options the property offers supports this. GM Ed Brea says, “In keeping with the Kerry Hotels brand DNA, we are all about creating memorable experiences, and enabling our guests in seeking enjoyment and a balanced lifestyle.”
Rooms range from 450-1,800 sf of sleek, contemporary furnishings. Minibar and WiFi are complimentary.
One of the hotel’s most unique features is the collection of F&B options. The COOK is the main a la carte restaurant, serving cuisine from all parts of the world in 11 live-show kitchens and interactive stations. There’s also a Wine Cellar/Cheese Vault with an extensive selection of wines and cheeses curated to pair.
The MEET is a contemporary steakhouse and specialty grill with seating for 112 people, including the Master’s Table, a private dining room accommodating 14. The MEET has the largest selection of fine steak and beef available in Shanghai displayed in its dedicated meat “Ageing Room,” presided over by the restaurant’s house butcher.
The BREW is an upscale craft brewery with signature beers created by the resident brewmaster, Leon Mickelson. The lively bar with pub-style dishes and live music seats 153. The design is industrial chic highlighted by the “flying brewery,” designed with 3-story stainless steel vats.
And Blossoms is a collection of four elegantly designed private dining rooms with sophisticated A/V, offering traditional and modern Chinese fine dining for a total of 200 diners.
Sports, wellness and adventure are key to the success of Kerry, Shanghai. Spread over three levels, the 65,000-sf Kerry Sports is Shanghai’s largest fitness center with four exercise studios offering group classes in aerobics, yoga, spinning and Tai Chi. An indoor heated 82-foot swimming pool and hot tub overlook a 7,500-sf outdoor rooftop garden with jogging track. The Spa offers massage, skincare, body treatments and physiotherapy.
There is over 78,000 sf of meeting space, designed by a feng shui master. Meeting rooms range from traditional Chinese greeting rooms to the largest column-free space in China.
For offsite tours, a unique way to experience the city is a motorcycle sidecar tour customized to fit any interest. When asked the primary differences between Kerry’s first two properties, director of sales Michael Huong says, “If the Kerry Shanghai is a BMW, then the Kerry Beijing is a Mercedes.”
KERRY HOTEL, BEIJING
The Kerry Hotel, Beijing is just as luxurious as Shanghai but in a more traditional manner. It was originally built in 1980, and the re-branding will be completed in three phases by November 2012. The property’s convenient Ring 3 location makes it accessible from anywhere in Beijing, including the airport.
Kerry’s Kitchen specializes in authentic Asian cuisine with a terrific buffet for breakfast and lunch. Dinner menu selections will tantalize any palate. An example is the delicious hot pumpkin soup served in a pumpkin. For upscale Cantonese and Imperial cuisine, Horizon Chinese is a gorgeous, traditionally designed Chinese restaurant serving dim sum and local seafood specialties.
The 486 well-appointed rooms will delight even the most discerning groups. The contemporary finishing details are exquisite with a rich gold, wood and blonde color scheme creating a sensuous and serene ambience. All rooms feature lovely ergonomic desks with free WiFi, and the high-tech electronic loos have several functions that must be seen to be believed! In addition, the mirrors can also be used as a television.
With over 65,000 sf of meeting rooms, the Kerry Hotel, Beijing can accommodate everything from the largest groups to small, intimate gatherings. The phase two renovations scheduled for completion in April will include all of the meeting space. Phase three renovations include a refurbishment of Kerry Sports, Beijing’s most extensive hotel fitness facility, to be completed in November.
Meeting planners will love working with the Kerry properties and the friendly staff. A combination of the two cities will please even the most well-traveled business person, appealing to traditionalists as well as those interested in the future of modern business travel and China in general.