After 37 years working abroad, Philip Barnes returned to the UK in 2016 as managing director of the Savoy and regional vice-president for Fairmont. He tells Janet Harmer how he has shaken up the culture of the five-red-AA-star, 267-bedroom hotel for the benefit of guests and staff alike
How is the Savoy performing at the moment?
We are having the best year since the hotel reopened in 2010 following a £220m, three-year refurbishment. We’ve had a phenomenal first seven months, outperforming in every month over all previous records. I put that down to a very clear strategy around what our needs are, solid sales and marketing and communication teams, and a strong focus on the guest and colleague experience. If colleagues are having a great time, guests will have a great time. It is not rocket science, but it is all about people.
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