Lockdown Offers Great Opportunities For Hotels

Durban, 17 April 2020 – According to  ANEW Hotels and Resorts (ANEW) chief executive officer, Clinton Armour, the COVID-19-induced lockdown provides tremendous opportunities for business growth.

Many small to medium sized hotels/ lodges do not have the resources, either financial or in terms of infrastructure, to weather the Coronavirus pandemic lockdown and have been forced to close – some maybe permanently. Many hotels, outside of the large hotel chains, also have high cost structures that are not going to be sustainable for the future.

ANEW, however, are taking a positive view of the setback. “We are committed to not only ensure our hotels survive through this time but are better positioned for the post-COVID-19 future. Flexibility, relationships, people and adapting to the changes, combined with our skill-set, gives us the confidence to push through and look ahead,” says Armour.  

As their brand name implies, ANEW is one of the newcomers to the South African hospitality scene, with three hotels in KwaZulu-Natal currently in its portfolio and several more beyond KZN, in the pipeline. “We have put extensive time and effort into the development of a world-class central reservations platform and guest management system, the results of which we now see paying off,” Armour says.

“We specialise in hotel management and have been honing and streamlining our backend systems for the past two years; this is what we have to offer other hotels looking to support their hospitality product. Most importantly the system has been created to be a great value proposition for the South African market.  In addition, I guarantee we will be cheaper (in overall fees), than the big international brands out there…so it’s a very good option for owners.”

The KZN-based entrepreneur believes that ANEW’s understanding and knowledge of the South African market and its sensitivity to pricing, has ensured their ability to pitch their products correctly to the local market, offering great value and affordable experiences. Elements they believe will be much sought after by South Africans post-Corona.

ANEW Hotels & Resorts was birthed from a deep family-rooted business that originated in 1952. The ANEW Brand was then launched on 1 July 2017 with a mission to provide hotel guests with the ultimate hospitality experience – the right blend of service, luxury and efficiency. 

“Our entire focus when we started ANEW, was on creating a unique hotel brand, firmly grounded in our values and creating memories and experiences for all stakeholders,” Armour continues, “We are incredibly passionate about what we do and feel a real calling to continue to grow the proudly South African ANEW brand, in the South African market.” 

“We believe we have the right people and have built an infrastructure and team that can roll out the growth for the brand, not for the sake of growth, but rather because they are the right partners and properties that make sense. We treat each hotel as an individual and make sure that the property has its own identity and strategic plan. We also know the importance the hotel has in each area of influence and make sure the hotel serves the community around it …from inside and out.”

Armour is bullish about ANEW’s business model noting that even though ANEW is a small management company, they have successfully de-branded from some of the biggest international brands, consistently improving overall results, from the time the group has taken over a property, which he feels is testament to his claim that “we know what we are doing and will do it well going forward.” He emphasises the importance of the relationship between owner and operator and is intent on making sure that expectations between the two are understood and aligned.  

“Attention to detail is everything,” he concludes. “We are in the process of rolling out our growth plans, so welcome approaches from any owners that are looking for a business partner and would like to discuss various options.”

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