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HOSPITALITY


The project pulled in top designers such as Terence Conran & Partners who designed the Above & Beyond restaurant and lounge area


WE WANT TO SET A GOOD EXAMPLE TO OUR STUDENTS ABOUT HOW THEY SHOULD APPROACH THEIR THINKING. WE CREATE TRENDS – NOT FOLLOW THEM


hotel. “We want to set a good example to our students about how they should approach their thinking. We create trends – not follow them.” Because it plays such an important


role in the future of the hotel industry, the SHTM collects data from guests that stay at Hotel ICON, which is then analysed by the students and published and reported via research papers given by the SHTM professors at industry seminars. The data is used to improve effi ciency and the guest experience at the hotel.


DOWN TO BUSINESS Like any business, Hotel ICON is expected to turn over a profi t. The hotel was cash positive after the fi rst month of operation and in profi t after three. Any surplus goes straight back into education and research at the PolyU. Having said that, achieving fi nancial success – although important – isn’t what drives Hatter.


64 What gets Hatter excited is nurturing


future talent for the hospitality and tour- ism industry in the Asia Pacifi c region. “I was looking for something more meaningful in my work,” he explains. “All the staff here, including me, have dual responsibility, to be a mentor to the students. It allows me to tap into my desires to address the different ways in which students learn.”


MAIN COURSE The SHTM offers students higher diploma, bachelor, masters and doctorate courses in hotel and tour- ism management. The SHTM has a Professor For a Day scheme, in which industry professionals are invited to speak to students. Hatter says this is a much more responsive way of learning. “As soon as a hospitality text book is printed, it’s out of date,” he says. “If I want to make a point to my stu- dents, I can bring in my director of revenue or my F&B manager to tell


Read Leisure Management online leisuremanagement.co.uk/digital


them the way things really are.” Students have to complete indus-


try placements as part of their study. Although they can choose to work in any hotel in the world, Hatter says many opt to work at Hotel ICON. “Hotel ICON is an independent hotel unfet- tered by any brand,” Hatter explains. “We can be much more experimental here. There’s no corporate guy saying ‘you can’t do that’. We’re about nurtur- ing responsive, confi dent, open-minded, inspiring people – future leaders.” Every six weeks, interns at Hotel ICON work in a new department, from F&B to admin, to guest rooms. They also do a stint in the research depart- ment to learn about guest profi ling. For Hatter, the Hotel ICON model rep-


resents the future for hotel and tourism education. “We’re the tomorrow hotel," he says. "Our elite students are sure to become tomorrow’s future hospital- ity leaders, which is very exciting for the future of the hotel industry.” ●


ISSUE 3 2012 © cybertrek 2012


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