New innovations in Luxury Spa and diagnostics procedure
The rich history of Karlovy Vary is closely connected with Emperor Charles IV, who granted the town royal privileges in 1348, thus making the town an important spa town.
The Hotel Olympic Palace developed alongside with the flourishing of spas and tourism in the city. This luxurious and charming hotel was a favorite of Karl Marx, the founder of Marxism, among many other important personalities.
It was my great honor to speak with Mr. Jan Lukeš about the importance of service within hotel business and about having an appropriate marketing strategy. Mr. Jan Lukeš is the right hand of the owner of the hotel, Mr. Sarmanov. He understands the hotel industry well, especially from a financial point of view. His knowledge and views are very important for guests as well as investors in the luxury boutique hotel sector.
Le Globless: Mr. Lukes, you are the manager of one of the most luxurious smaller hotels in Karlovy Vary. Could you please tell me what makes the Olympic Palace Hotel special?
Jan Lukeš: Hotel Olympic Palace is a small luxury spa hotel with a rich history, which dates back to the 18th century. I was lucky to be involved in the reconstruction project from the very beginning, as well as during the new extensive reconstructions, leading all the way to it’s current form. Therefore I know the hotel in detail.
Hotel Olympic Palace is exceptional for it’s privacy and individual approach to guests and their needs. With 58 rooms, the staff can take great care of the needs of each visitor. We remember many of our guests and have almost family like relationships with them. They like to come back to us with their entire families or friends. We rely mainly on high quality service and promptness.
We work with details that make the stay of our guests more pleasant. There is a huge importance in the little things you don’t even realize. For example, such a small thing as a check-in, receiving a welcome drink and sweets from us upon arrival, brings pleasure to the guest after a long journey. At the same time, we make sure that our guests relax from the very first moment and let go of stress.
,,The key of the success is New innovations in Luxury Spa Hotel OLYMPIC PALACE and unique early diagnostics procedure”
An important part of the hotel is the restaurant. We like creativity and we have prepared detox packages and a varied menu inspired by the latest trends in gastronomy. We meticulously select the ingredients from which we prepare modern gastronomic experiences for our guests. We try to offer them the best of the best.
The pride of the hotel is the innovative spa and therapeutic treatments, that connect trends and news within healthcare. We can boast that we are the only hotel in Karlovy Vary to work with infusion therapy, which is supervised by our renowned doctor.
,,We have a unique early diagnostics procedure. Based on the extensive experience of our specialists, we have created a special set of blood tests and sonography, with which our specialists determine the areas of potential problems and possible disharmony in the body.“
Although individual results of examinations may be normal, our comprehensive approach allows us to identify future problems and to focus on the guest having a balanced health in the future.
Le Globless: The hotel underwent a demanding reconstruction, but at the same time you managed to preserve it’s grace.
Jan Lukeš: Every reconstruction in Karlovy Vary must meet strict standards of monument control. Therefore we have to make sure that exact construction procedures are followed and that the original architecture of the building is kept in place. In practice this means, that we have renovated and preserved the maximum of the original hotel look.
However, the history of the building dates back to 1842, when the first buildings were being preserved in this address. In the beginning, only a small boarding house with spa services was built here. The reconstruction was started by the Stadler brothers in 1905. The construction was then entrusted to the young architect Otto Stainl, and thereafter the renowned builder Jozef Walderst was in charge of the hotel.
Back then, the hotel had 55 rooms and a bathroom, and was richly decorated with stucco and Art Nouveau ornaments. At that time it was called Hotel Germania Palais. After the First World War, it was named after the largest ocean going ship Olympic, and a replica of the Statue of Liberty was installed with a gable depicting freedom and liberty. You can still see it there today.
In 1965, the hotel was nationalized and renovated until it was finally sold in 2000 to a private ownership. Two adjoining smaller hotels were purchased for the hotel, which had to undergo a complete renovation. The current owner has returned the hotel to its former glory and nobility.
Le Globless: The complete reconstruction certainly required considerable financial resources, even a strong owner, and if I’m not mistaken, the current owner operates in Kazakhstan.
Jan Lukeš: Yes, the hotel is owned by Mr. Sarmanov. The hotel owes it’s delicacy to its beautiful, current appearance. At the same time, we really appreciate his approach and support in difficult times. Surely you know that many of the hotels were laid off during Covid. The owner supported us and so we used this time for developing new marketing strategies and preparing the hotel for guests.
Le Globless: Is the hotel run by a strong and stable investor, or do you think it’s more a result of hard work?
Jan Lukeš: It’s a perfect symbiosis of both. Without a good owner, employees are not satisfied and cannot work well, the staff changes and guest care is compromised. A hard working and qualified staff equals the satisfaction of hotel guests.
The satisfaction and return of guests as well as the smooth operation of the hotel is important for the owner.
During the pandemic when it was impossible to travel, we had periods when the hotel was not open to guests and we had to rebuild our marketing strategy. We focused mainly on the domestic market, Germany or Ukraine. The owner kept us going and we didn’t have to let go of staff.
,,The drastic changes in the economic market caused by the war in Ukraine will affect the entire world.“
About our Marketing Strategy;
The hotel segment, which was accustomed to a rich Russian clientele, must necessarily focus on other markets, especially in the luxury bath and spa sector. However, the well-known generosity of the Russian clientele will be missing.
Changing our marketing strategy and focusing on new markets is a huge but very important challenge.
,,If we want to survive, we must promptly respond to the constant changes in our environment and monitor the situation in the world.”
The Middle East, Northern Europe and Kazakhstan are thus becoming interesting markets. Addressing these markets requires a very specific communication and a new style of marketing.
Simple marketing presentation and advertising does not make much sense in this case, as the importance is constantly placed on trust and personal presentations.
Le Globless: Which market is the most interesting for you now?
Jan Lukeš: We know the Kazakhstan market very well, and so we mainly address this clientele. We are also interested in Azerbaijan and Israel but also Qatar, Kuwait and other middle east countries where we are directing our main marketing.
The proximity of the airport in Karlovy Vary allows the arrival of private jets, even of the most private guests for whom we can prepare an easy transfer directly to the hotel.
,,In our hotels we have had the honor to host the most exclusive clientele from around the world, from private royal families to important businessmen and their families. We are looking forward to opening our hotel to the world.“
Hotel Olympic Palace is attracting guests from all over the world, and with their creativity the management is constantly improving their already excellent service. One really forgets about the worries of the world and indulges in rest and relaxation when visiting the hotel.
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