Company: Hotel Avenue Louise Brussels Trademark Collection by Wyndham
Person Interviewed: Esther Pisonero
Position: Hotel Director

Why did Wyndham hotel chain decide to buy this hotel in Brussels? What is the history of the hotel?

Atom Hotels purchased and refurbished the building as part of its strategy to build a portfolio of four and five-star urban and holiday hotels in priority destinations, leased to first-class operators. Nowadays and following this acquisition, Atom Hoteles Socimi’s portfolio currently comprises 28 assets, totalling on 6,545 rooms, with a total value of more than 686 million euros.

Atom delegates the management of the hotel assets to GMA, which is an independent manager of real estate investment vehicles, specialising in real estate assets and projects with hotel underlyings.

The Hotel is operated by Hotel Collection International, which is an established and leading multi-brand hotel operator, working with leading hotel brands such as Hilton, Marriott, IHG, Wyndham and Best Western through franchise agreements. It currently has 18 assets under management in Spain, Europe, and Africa.

What are the differentiating elements of this boutique hotel compared to its competitors?

A hotel in the heart of Brussels (Av. Louise) that has been created with the purpose of being a reference for the client who is looking to be close to everything without sacrificing peace and quiet. It is a welcoming and cosmopolitan hotel where its open lobby invites you to socialise or to continue working within fluid spaces that redefine the hotel experience.

What type of clients are you mainly targeting?

The client who is looking for a cosmopolitan hotel with Art Nouveau accents in the lobby, where you can work or socialise in a dynamic atmosphere. At the moment, the business clients are travelling less but we are confident that they will be back from autumn onwards. The hotel is located in an area in which there are many embassies and companies, not far from the European Institutions, so this market segment will be the most prominent during the week. We also have the weekend-leisure clients, who travel to the heart of Europe to get to know Brussels and its surroundings for a few days. It is this type of client who makes us be the first choice thanks to our unbeatable location on Avenue Louise, the best shopping and cultural area.

You opened the hotel in March, after renovating part of the building. It has been a complicated period due to the social and health crisis caused by COVID-19. How are you managing the return of clients and the return to “normality”? What are the priorities in the “post-covid” era?

The situation has been particularly complicated because it has affected the opening that we had planned for September 2020 and we have had to delay it for half a year, which has affected all the forecasts that had been made. We are confident that from the second half of the year, both tourism in the summer and companies from September onwards will resume on-site activities, generating the natural dynamic of Brussels, which is so attractive and cosmopolitan.

The safety of our customers is of paramount importance to us and we have taken all the necessary measures to ensure this, as recommended by the authorities. Respecting social distancing and avoiding contact as much as possible, as well as air quality control are the pillars of customer service at the moment.

The hotel has just opened its doors and we are very happy with the product, the market is positively responding to the new concept and the brand positioning is attracting new customers. Our aim is to be a reference hotel in the Louise area for all guests who have to travel to Brussels and are looking for a central hotel where they can feel at home.

How do you think membership of the Chamber can help the hotel?

Being a member of the Chamber is a great support at all times but especially in these times of opening because it gives us visibility to the Spanish market of companies and individuals, which otherwise we would not reach so directly.

It is always a pleasure to be part of an institution that does so much to help the international development of Spanish companies and helps to put us in contact with each other.