Breaking Travel News interview: Antonino Cardillo, general manager, the Oberoi Beach Resort Al Zorah | Focus
Breaking Travel News recently caught up with Antonino Cardillo, general manager of the Oberoi Beach Resort Al Zorah, Ajman, United Arab Emirates, to find out about how strong teamwork has played a crucial role in adapting to the challenges set by Covid-19.
Breaking Travel News: What changes did you implement at the Oberoi Beach Resort Al Zorah in order to continue operating through the pandemic?
Antonino Cardillo: In difficult times it is most crucial to imbibe a positive and optimistic approach in the team and look for opportunities within chaos.
We as a team believed in ourselves, and the unique location of Al Zorah – outside of Dubai and in a very pristine, nature friendly, secluded ambience.
Realising the new demand and need for staycations, work from home and online schooling, our team worked tirelessly to ensure that in a changed world due to Covid-19, we positioned ourselves as a safe, secluded and less-crowded destination where you can feel home.
BTN: How do you see the next year mapping out for guest stays? With the resumption of international travel thankfully back on the horizon, are you expecting a busy summer season?
AC: The UAE has worked tremendously in positioning itself as a destination which is safe and with world-class facilities.
Our usual guests were used to having two to three vacations a year, however with the present scenario most of them barely travelled in 2020.
I foresee an enhanced influx of overseas guests in summer as post vaccination they would want to travel to relatively ‘safer destination’ as soon as possible.
On top we do believe that inside country tourism will continue to develop further on and become important for the success of resorts in the UAE.
BTN: Describe how the lockdown experience was in Ajman, and at The Oberoi Beach Resort Al Zorah in particular, and how it compared to the bustle of normal times.
AC: Adaptability is the key to ensuring sustained and successful operations.
Covid-19 bought many first-time challenges, restrictions which most of us have not experienced at all and so to react, adapt and make our way around it was the order of the day, be it at the restaurants, public areas, pool or beach.
BTN: What trends in travel and tourism do you see emerging in the aftermath of the crisis?
AC: Guests will become increasingly conscious of safety, security, sustainability and an environment friendly ambience.
The definition of luxury will get redefined beyond the textbook and that ever more hotels have to adapt to this situation in real time to stay relevant.
BTN: Have you had any positive changes in your own outlook in reaction to the crisis?
AC: Take life as it comes, live by the day, to stay positive no matter how adverse situation is and always focus on opportunities in any crisis times.
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Find out more about the hotel on the official website.