Jakarta: Hospitality in a bohemian neighbourhood

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Alila photo - Carter
Carter Crites, General Manager of Kemang Icon by Alila in Jakarta

Kemang Icon by Alila is an all-suite boutique hotel located in the Kemang neighbourhood of Jakarta. Inside Investor spoke to Carter Crites, General Manager of Kemang Icon by Alila, about the hotel’s personalised uniqueness and its place in the development of Kemang.

Q: Please tell us about Kemang Icon and what it brings to the market.

A: First of all, Kemang Icon Hotel Resorts has twelve unique suites, each with a different name, art collection and feel. It’s where our guests feel at home and have their own space. With a ratio of three staff to one guestroom, we provide a unique personal experience.  Our special eye for detail is what really differentiates us most from other hotels.

Q: Who makes up your main market?

A: During the weekdays, our guests are business travellers. Often, they end up being our long-stay guests. It’s not uncommon for our guests to stay up to 30 or 35 days.

Q: Where are your guests from?

A: A majority of our guests, about 30 per cent, are from Indonesia itself. The second largest number of guests is from Australia, followed by UK, Singapore, and the US. We’ve seen some growth from China and South Korea, primarily from leisure travel. However, we also have some residual business travellers too, because Jakarta is a business hub.

Q: Have you seen any impacts from the Eurozone in crisis and the economy not going well?            

A: No, not really.

Q: What could a business traveller expect from staying at Kemang Icon?

A: In addition to our hotel services, we also have two meeting rooms. Kemang is a cool bohemian neighbourhood, with some great bars and restaurants nearby and next to many company HQs and businesses. Usually, our guests who are people from the film industry tend to set up office in their room. Our two meeting spaces provide greater convenience for our guests.

Q: Being a small hotel, how do you market your brand, especially overseas?

A: Generally, we do on-the-ground sales calls for business travellers in the area. There are many oil, gas, and mining offices in the vicinity, as well as a big film industry. For the overseas market, we are supported by our parent hotel chain Alila, as well as public relations people, who help market to the more recreational travellers.

Q: What other sectors are you targeting besides the oil and gas and the film industry?

A: Right now, it’s these main sectors that we’re targeting. Our focus on the film industry is Kemang-specific because it is the creative hub of Jakarta. Additionally, there are many oil and gas businesses in the area.

Q: Based on your time here, what do you see as the biggest upcoming opportunity?

A: In my year here, I’ve seen so much work being completed, like a highway and several high-rise buildings. Just watching Jakarta progress with more and more investment is itself a huge opportunity.

Q: With the increasing residential properties come even more traffic and more congestion. How can Jakarta deal with this?

A: The development of the city is a great thing because more and more people are coming in, but the slow pace of infrastructure development also presents a challenge. We will see more infrastructure spending over the next few years and improvements in the roads. Additionally, this will force great neighbourhoods like Kemang to offer even more, as the area will become a destination in itself.

Q: What other new sectors or businesses that you know are coming up?

A: Well, I am most in contact with the energy sector, which has new projects coming up all the time.

Q. Do you have any expansion plans?

A: This year, our focus is on the restaurant, especially with our new chef on board. It’s very hard to find a chef with the experience that he has, so we are really concentrating on the restaurant. Another major update that we’re undertaking is increasing our wireless Internet service from 2MB per second to 12MB per second by next week. By the third quarter, I plan to increase it to 36 MB per second.

Q: Where do you see this hotel in 5 years?

A: Our main focus is on the restaurant, but I would like to see the hotel become the creative hub of Kemang. Big cities around the world, like New York, usually have a hotel that is the cool cultural anchor in the neighbourhood. I believe Kemang is growing in the same manner, and would like to see Kemang Icon be a part of it.

 

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Reading Time: 3 minutes

Carter Crites, General Manager of Kemang Icon by Alila in Jakarta

Kemang Icon by Alila is an all-suite boutique hotel located in the Kemang neighbourhood of Jakarta. Inside Investor spoke to Carter Crites, General Manager of Kemang Icon by Alila, about the hotel’s personalised uniqueness and its place in the development of Kemang.

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Alila photo - Carter
Carter Crites, General Manager of Kemang Icon by Alila in Jakarta

Kemang Icon by Alila is an all-suite boutique hotel located in the Kemang neighbourhood of Jakarta. Inside Investor spoke to Carter Crites, General Manager of Kemang Icon by Alila, about the hotel’s personalised uniqueness and its place in the development of Kemang.

Q: Please tell us about Kemang Icon and what it brings to the market.

A: First of all, Kemang Icon Hotel Resorts has twelve unique suites, each with a different name, art collection and feel. It’s where our guests feel at home and have their own space. With a ratio of three staff to one guestroom, we provide a unique personal experience.  Our special eye for detail is what really differentiates us most from other hotels.

Q: Who makes up your main market?

A: During the weekdays, our guests are business travellers. Often, they end up being our long-stay guests. It’s not uncommon for our guests to stay up to 30 or 35 days.

Q: Where are your guests from?

A: A majority of our guests, about 30 per cent, are from Indonesia itself. The second largest number of guests is from Australia, followed by UK, Singapore, and the US. We’ve seen some growth from China and South Korea, primarily from leisure travel. However, we also have some residual business travellers too, because Jakarta is a business hub.

Q: Have you seen any impacts from the Eurozone in crisis and the economy not going well?            

A: No, not really.

Q: What could a business traveller expect from staying at Kemang Icon?

A: In addition to our hotel services, we also have two meeting rooms. Kemang is a cool bohemian neighbourhood, with some great bars and restaurants nearby and next to many company HQs and businesses. Usually, our guests who are people from the film industry tend to set up office in their room. Our two meeting spaces provide greater convenience for our guests.

Q: Being a small hotel, how do you market your brand, especially overseas?

A: Generally, we do on-the-ground sales calls for business travellers in the area. There are many oil, gas, and mining offices in the vicinity, as well as a big film industry. For the overseas market, we are supported by our parent hotel chain Alila, as well as public relations people, who help market to the more recreational travellers.

Q: What other sectors are you targeting besides the oil and gas and the film industry?

A: Right now, it’s these main sectors that we’re targeting. Our focus on the film industry is Kemang-specific because it is the creative hub of Jakarta. Additionally, there are many oil and gas businesses in the area.

Q: Based on your time here, what do you see as the biggest upcoming opportunity?

A: In my year here, I’ve seen so much work being completed, like a highway and several high-rise buildings. Just watching Jakarta progress with more and more investment is itself a huge opportunity.

Q: With the increasing residential properties come even more traffic and more congestion. How can Jakarta deal with this?

A: The development of the city is a great thing because more and more people are coming in, but the slow pace of infrastructure development also presents a challenge. We will see more infrastructure spending over the next few years and improvements in the roads. Additionally, this will force great neighbourhoods like Kemang to offer even more, as the area will become a destination in itself.

Q: What other new sectors or businesses that you know are coming up?

A: Well, I am most in contact with the energy sector, which has new projects coming up all the time.

Q. Do you have any expansion plans?

A: This year, our focus is on the restaurant, especially with our new chef on board. It’s very hard to find a chef with the experience that he has, so we are really concentrating on the restaurant. Another major update that we’re undertaking is increasing our wireless Internet service from 2MB per second to 12MB per second by next week. By the third quarter, I plan to increase it to 36 MB per second.

Q: Where do you see this hotel in 5 years?

A: Our main focus is on the restaurant, but I would like to see the hotel become the creative hub of Kemang. Big cities around the world, like New York, usually have a hotel that is the cool cultural anchor in the neighbourhood. I believe Kemang is growing in the same manner, and would like to see Kemang Icon be a part of it.

 

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