Fri, Apr 13, 2018 - Page 12 News List

Ambassador Hotel Taipei signs deal with Hungkuo Delin University to groom talent

By Crystal Hsu  /  Staff reporter

The Ambassador Hotel Taipei (台北國賓飯店), the flagship property of Ambassador Hotels and Restaurants, yesterday inked a cooperation pact with Hungkuo Delin University of Technology to groom talent and ensure stable staff supply.

The 65-year-old hotel is seeking to raise its food and beverage sales from 60 percent of overall revenue last year to 70 percent this year to cope with sharpening competition amid a decline in inbound travelers.

“I am delighted at the cooperative education agreement as Hungkuo Delin students are hotly sought after by companies,” hotel chairman Emmet Hsu (許育瑞) told a news conference in Taipei.

The New Taipei City-based university also partners with affiliated Caesar Park Hotels and Resorts (凱撒飯店連鎖) as well as local restaurant chains Din Tai Fung (鼎泰豐), Mitsui Food and Beverage Group (三井餐飲集團), Wowprime Corp (王品集團) and Sushi Express Group (爭鮮迴轉壽司).

Personnel needs are acute in the hospitality industry with 760,000 job openings nationwide, according to statistics compiled by local online job banks.

About one-third of university graduates want to work for restaurants, encouraged by last month’s launch of the Taipei edition of the Michelin Guide, Hungkuo Delin University president Lo Shi-peng (羅仕鵬) said.

Hsu, who also chairs HCT Logistics (新竹貨運), Shihlin Electric & Engineering Corp (士林電機) and a high school, said the Ambassador Taipei aims to attract talent with competitive pay and promotion opportunities.

The hotel group owns outlets in Hsinchu and Kaohsiung, as well as the value hotel brand Amba (意舍), that could use marketing, interior design, business management, accounting, public relations and general affairs talent, Hsu said.

Meanwhile, Hsu said he has no interest in taking over the site of Westin Taipei (台北威斯汀六福皇宮) after its planned shutdown at the end of this year, saying that the rent might prove overly onerous.

“Growing rents and a declining number of tourists pose a big challenge for any hotel operator,” he said.

The issue is less a concern for the Ambassador Taipei, which owns its property, chief operating officer Frank Lin (林興國) said, adding that the facility expects its occupancy to hold steady this year from last year at 77.89 percent, with stable room rates of NT$3,795 per night.

There is little room for upward adjustment of room charges given the entry of new players, Lin said.

Japanese travelers account for 70 percent of its clientele, allowing the Ambassador Taipei to survive the plunge in Chinese tourists, Lin said, adding that it plans to redecorate its Szechuan restaurant and banquet facilities to court and retain customers.

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