Viceroy Hotel Group CEO: "Every Hotel Has to be One-of-a-Kind"

By Stephanie Ricca

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina—Corporate culture—particularly leadership culture—is important to Bill Walshe, CEO of Viceroy Hotel Group since 2012. Under the Viceroy Hotel Group umbrella, the company has nine Viceroy-branded hotels open, with projects underway in Algarve, Portugal; Vietnam; Istanbul; Serbia; Panama and Buenos Aires.

The company also manages four non-Viceroy-branded hotels in San Francisco.

For Walshe, defining a corporate culture that emphasizes the company’s spirit, passion and beliefs helps it relate to guests who want the same things.

In a conversation with Hotel News Now at the recent South American Hotel Investment Conference, Walshe not only discussed the company’s growth plans but also how its concept of corporate culture factors into every move it makes.

What travelers want

With Viceroy Hotels & Resorts-branded properties operating globally in destinations including New York; Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates; and St. Lucia, the luxury brand is small, but Walshe said its size makes it able to anticipate seamlessly what guests want, something that can be difficult for the fickle and changing luxury traveler.

“What we need for modern luxury hospitality experiences is the ability to fuse consistency and individuality,” he said. “The emerging traveler is looking for something which is beyond the norm. … Every hotel has to be one-of-a-kind. Everyone has to have a sense of connection to destination and community. Yet you have to have the underlying consistency in your operating processes and in your sales, marketing and distribution platforms to be successful in doing what you do.”

With a group Viceroy’s size, Walshe said he can create enough process to do things well behind the scenes without “suffocating the spontaneity and the energy and the individuality that the modern hotel guest is looking for.”

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