Boutique Design’s 2017 Up-and-Coming Hoteliers are making their marks with niche hotel concepts that sell to Main Street and Wall Street.
The start-up: “Any company is defined by its management process and culture,” says the former management consultant to firms such as Strategos and Deloitte, who parlayed his knowledge of corporate best practices into the hotel industry, first working for maverick (and 2016 Boutique Design Up-and-Coming Hotelier) Barry Sternlicht at then-Starwood Hotels and Resorts. After mastering the art of shaking up the industry without shaking investor confidence, he moved on to learn the ropes of big flag operations at Hilton. A stint at Caesar’s Entertainment showed the Harvard Business School grad just how central—and profitable—data collection and CRM are to hospitality venues. It’s no surprise, then, that when he did start his own hospitality management firm, Cachet Hospitality Group, in 2013, he synthesized those lessons into a research-backed, design-heavy approach he likens to a young tech company or Tesla more than a traditional hotelier.
Alexander Mirza. Photo: Courtesy of Cachet Hospitality Group
Why the world needed another hotel company: “Our brands and business model are low cost disruptions. For example, we control design in house and our boutique/lifestyle hotels are less capital intensive with fewer architectural and design standards. We analyze each asset’s capital allocation to generate higher returns on invested capital for owners. It’s very analytical and then creative, rather than the other way around like many of our direct competitors.
We start with the research on where investment should go in each property, not just a straight website and guest room refresh. In a recent property, we’d planned to do that, but the data showed that the revenue driver was the restaurants, specifically for weddings. So, we were able to convince the owner to do a $2.5 or $3 million redo on the restaurants and spend less on other areas. We never would have guessed going in that that would be the best way to allocate funds.”
Cachet Beach Hotel Los Cabos, Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. Photo: Courtesy of Cachet Hospitality Group
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