Situated on a 400-metre private beach, Ajman Hotel is the ultimate resort for the discerning traveller.
With well-appointed rooms offering spectacular views over the clear blue waters of the Arabian Gulf, the property has been recognised as Ajman’s Leading Hotel a total of six times by voters at the World Travel Awards.
With a wide selection of on-site dining options and extensive leisure facilities, there is no need to leave the property in order to enjoy the best in Middle Eastern hospitality.
Though, if guests venture out, downtown Dubai – and the Burj Khalifa – is just half an hour away, while the sights of Sharjah, including the Gold Souk and Al Noor Mosque, are just 15 minutes’ drive.
Here Breaking Travel News speaks to George Ganchev, general manager of the hotel, to see how the business is adapting to the challenges presented by Covid-19 and what we can expect from tourism in Ajman this year.
Breaking Travel News: It is no secret tourism in the Middle East has been hard hit by the coronavirus pandemic, but Ajman Hotel has been open throughout a troubling period. How have you ensured the safety of guests?
George Ganchev: I would like to thank you for your great initiative by doing these interviews, so all of us can keep the pulse of our industry up despite the global situation.
Coming back to your question: we all have to give a huge credit to the immediate measures taken by the government of the United Arab Emirates.
For us, the health and safety of our guests and employees was, and is, our utmost priority.
Ajman Hotel managed by Blazon Hotels prides itself by featuring a wide-spread of on-site dining and entertainment options; due to the Covid-situation we had to cease the operation of our venues and reduce our hotel operations to the minimum to abide with the instructions drilled down by the government and Ajman Tourism Development Department.
I also would like to give credit to my team for their support, responsiveness and diligence - strict hygiene and disinfection measurements were taken promptly and exercised on a regular basis.
The ground rules - such as placing sanitisers around the public areas of the hotel, wearing masks and gloves when interacting with guests, public area regular disinfection and pest control - were implemented with an immediate effect and are scrutinised constantly to ensure a safe and healthy environment.
Currently the hotel has only one restaurant open to facilitate the needs of in-house guests.
We recently opened our beach to the public, while the pool, with restrictions, is now open to hotel guests.
Also, our team remains available to assist guests and business partners with queries related to reservations, stays and promotions.
BTN: What changes did you have to make to the running of the hotel in light of the developing health situation across the region?
GG: Ajman Hotel has not closed its doors, but the global situation needs all of us to be more entrepreneurial, because it is a not normal or usual situation for five-star hotels.
What we are certain of right now is that we live in a time of uncertainty and we have to adapt and bear the responsibility of containing and protecting our guests, employees and community.
We operate at minimum occupancy and our guests are mainly residents of United Arab Emirates.
As mentioned earlier, we suspended the operation of all dining venues excluding the one that meets the needs of the guests in-house and it is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
We have also rearranged the settings of the restaurant to maintain a social distance.
Hygiene and disinfection of public areas, occupied rooms, corridors, outlets serving food are performed regularly by the housekeeping team.
And, yet, we as a team never forgot that despite this limited operation, we have to deliver five-star service and quality.
BTN: How would you describe the situation in Ajman more generally? Has the destination weathered the storm successfully?
GG: This situation has had a serious impact on the entire industry worldwide - it will take time to recover.
The most important thing is to keep yourself and your team up to date with absolutely everything and try to penetrate different niches where available.
You have to be alert and open to learn and compromise.
As for Ajman and Ajman Hotel right now, our business is focused on the local residential market.
We are closely following all local mandates, re-evaluating the situation and adapting our business to it with an imperative toward the priority of health and safety of absolutely everyone.
BTN: With restrictions on travel new beginning to be lifted around the world, what can guests expect if they visit Ajman Hotel, and Ajman more generally, later in the year?
GG: First and foremost a safe environment, and second genuine service and amazing indoor and outdoor facilities for guests to enjoy when their travel brings them back to the United Arab Emirates and Ajman Hotel by Blazon Hotels.
For now, as mentioned, travellers cannot fly but they can drive.
Ajman is a beautiful place, not far away from Dubai.
The unique selling point of Ajman and Ajman Hotel is the natural open beach.
The hotel has the largest stretch of a private beach and all rooms are viewing the sea.
It is the perfect getaway spot for people to come and have a relaxed vacation.
In Ajman Hotel guests can savour a wide spread of on-site dining options and delight in extensive leisure facilities without ever having to leave the property.
I think it is the ultimate resort backdrop for those who love the nature and the sea.
BTN: Ajman Hotel has been recognised as one of the best in the business by voters at World Travel Awards – how do accolades such as these help you get your message out to consumers around the world?
GG: I have to definitely travel back in time, two years back, because everything started with the rebranding of a well-known property driven and managed by hospitality pioneer Kempinski.
In the beginning, we had to dedicate lots of time and resources to accomplish the rebranding and the re-launching plan.
For me, it was important to calculate all pluses and minuses to ensure an outstanding performance considering that Blazon Hotels is a new five-star brand, and it was highly important for me and the team to generate new business opportunities to build trust between the group and the market key players.
It is no secret that rebranding a property which has always been known as a Kempinski for years was certainly a challenge; however, the determination and support of the team led us to successfully reposition ourselves in the industry.
The Ajman’s Leading Hotel title that the hotel took at the World Travel Awards in April last year was an immense achievement for me and for my team - a great achievement after months of hard work.
Located on the Ajman corniche, Ajman Hotel is just few minutes away from the main tourist attractions.
The property offers plenty of options to discover the heritage of the smallest of the United Arab Emirates, or a chance to just relax on the beach.
Find out more on the official website.
Blazon delivers expertise in skills that serve guests by providing a tailor-made menu of services and choices whenever and wherever demanded.
Find out more here.