Six Senses Hotels Resorts Spas is on a growth curve, with the company continuing to spread its reach around the globe. The most recent additions in terms of boutique accommodation include a new build in Fiji’s Mamanuca Islands, the group’s first city-based venture in the ‘Lion City’ and a property in Turkey.
LATTE chatted exclusively with Six Senses Hotels Resorts Spas’ President Bernhard Bohnenberger – also known as BB – to learn more about the company’s vision and to find out if, when and where the group envisages expanding into Australia.
Bernhard, whereabouts around the world does Six Senses operate?
Six Senses currently operate 17 properties. 15 are branded as Six Senses and are located in Bhutan (comprising five lodges) to be opened soon; Qing Cheng Mountain, China; Fiji; Courchevel, France; Uluwatu, Bali, Indonesia (opening soon); Laamu, Maldives; Zighy Bay, Oman; Douro Valley, Portugal; Zil Pasyon, Félicité Island, Seychelles; Duxton, Singapore; Samui and Yao Noi, Thailand; Kaplankaya, Turkey; Con Dao and Ninh Van Bay, Vietnam.
Two properties are branded as Evason and are located in Hua Hin, Thailand; and Ana Mandara, Nha Trang, Vietnam.
What is the business ethos at Six Senses?
Six Senses offers a place in which guests can reconnect and focus on what really matters in destinations that are in total harmony with the natural environment. We give nature a major say in everything we do, and our aim is for guests to feel their best. Our groundbreaking Sleep With Six Senses standard will improve sleep quality. The food guests Eat With Six Senses will boost health, vitality and mood.
What are some of the new additions this year?
We have recently opened Six Senses Fiji, Six Senses Duxton in Singapore and Six Senses Kaplankaya in Turkey.
Which future locations are in the pipeline and when will they join the network?
Coming up later we have three of the five lodges that make up Six Senses Bhutan, Six Senses Uluwatu in Bali, Six Senses Krabey Island in Cambodia, Six Senses Maxwell in Singapore plus the two remaining lodges of Six Senses Bhutan. In 2019 and 2020 we plan to open Six Senses Shaharut in Israel’s Negev Desert, Six Senses Yangshuo in China, Six Senses St Kitts in St Kitts and Nevis, Six Senses Zhiben Hot Springs in Taiwan and Six Senses New York.
In the case of Six Senses Duxton, why has the group decided to enter the city market, rather than the traditional retreat, tourist hot spot or island location?
As our name suggests (Six Senses Hotels Resorts Spas) we have long sought perfect vehicles for urban hotels. Singapore’s two properties will make ideal hotels for the brand.
How many other city sights are on Six Senses’ radar moving forward.
New York will be a major addition to the hotel development of the brand.
How important is the travel trade to Six Senses?
Six Senses has always appreciated the support from the travel trade and has excellent and long-standing relationships. It is an important sector for bookings.
How big is the Australian market for Six Senses?
Australians’ love of travel has included Six Senses from the very beginning and continues to be robust. Australians understand the Six Senses commitment to the environment and community and enjoy being a part of it by choosing Six Senses properties.
Six Senses has previously been linked to Long Island. Is the group continuing to assess locations in Australia for a future site?
“Six Senses has nothing positive on the development front for Australia at this time. We have evaluated several opportunities in the past, but they were not quite right for the brands. We would love to be in Australia and hope that ideal projects can be identified in the future.”
Six Senses Hotels Resorts Spas President, Bernhard Bohnenberger
Queensland and the Whitsundays/Great Barrier Reef region is an obvious choice, but where else in Australia could you foresee the Six Senses brand entering in the next five-10 years? Tasmania? Western Australia? New South Wales?
There could be ideal settings in every state as Six Senses is not limited to sun, surf and sand! Because of our beginnings, some markets think of us as just that, but we have a property in the snow fields of France and a beautiful resort in China where there is a cool winter. The wine-growing region of Margaret River could be a great location, also.
Lead image: Six Senses Zil Pasyon, Seychelles