Sponsored by Reynolds
The four-AA-star, 312-bedroom St Pancras Renaissance Hotel is an iconic establishment, owned and redeveloped by the Manhattan Loft Corporation since 2007 and reopened in 2011.
Operated under Marriott International’s Renaissance brand, the hotel features three main food and beverage outlets and 10 event spaces in total, the largest being Hansom Hall, which has capacity for 280 guests for a sit-down meal, or 575 for a standing reception. In total, St Pancras Renaissance holds a collective events space of 12,000 sq ft, which can cater for more than 1,200 guests at any one time.
The team caters for a diverse range of events, for example, a Bar Mitzvah which requested five different cocktail stations for 250 guests, plus live food stations across seven different types of cuisine; and an oil company which held a three-day event featuring a French wine bar with charcuterie and cheese, a German beer garden, a beach party and a gin and tonic bar.
From an event sales perspective, the quality of FAM (familiarisation) trips is inspirational. To celebrate 20 years since Spice World: The Movie, the Gallery was transformed into a ‘cinema’, featuring pop-up beds, popcorn and snacks (the band’s ‘Wannabe’ music video was filmed at the hotel). The fully subscribed event was attended by media and corporate bookers which led to four subsequent event bookings.
The hotel has also introduced a dedicated resource to look after events under 30 guests and has subsequently seen an increase in repeat business in this area of 31%; while a focus on converting smaller meeting space – with the appointment of a dedicated events executive for this area – has led to an increase in business by just under 20%.
The group is also incredibly team-focused; over the past 12 months, a lot of work has been done to improve career progression in the department. The events operations team has successfully promoted three new supervisors in the department through training and guidance. The department has also achieved a score of 100% in the 2017/2018 Associate Engagement Survey. Stability has led to better client relationships and this loyalty means the team is willing to go above and beyond their roles. Members of the conference and banqueting team have participated in the annual charity lunch organised by St Pancras, where staff prepare a hot lunch for a local day centre for the homeless, and the events sales team not only spent two evenings after work purchasing and transporting plants for the launch of Roof Garden St Pancras but also gave up a Saturday to plant them.
The success of the team is naturally reflected in financial performance – to year end 2017, the conference and banqueting department generated revenue of £4.33m and the team is already anticipating covers for this year of nearly 88,000.
What the judges said
“In a field of some of the most famous hotels in the country, St Pancras stood out by being innovative, forward-thinking and service-led. The involvement of all staff in the initiatives was also commendable.”
Paul Southern, managing director, Central Hall Westminster, London
“A very comprehensive entry from a beautiful hotel which demonstrated great teamwork, passion, care and innovative ideas.”
Nuno César de Sá, hotel manager, Rudding Park, Harrogate, Yorkshire
De Vere Beaumont Estate Old Windsor, Berkshire
Royal Lancaster London
St Pancras Renaissance Hotel, London
Whittlebury Hall Towcester, Northamptonshire
2017 Principal York
2016 Park Plaza Westminster Bridge London
2015 Whittlebury Hall Towcester, Northamptonshire
2014 Lancaster London
2013 Hotel du Vin & Bistro Bristol
2012 The Connaught London
2011 Sofitel London Heathrow
2010 The Berkeley London