Kimpton On Grand Cayman Marks Brand’s Turn To Luxury And International

by Harvey Chipkin
Kimpton On Grand Cayman Marks Brand’s Turn To Luxury And International

Kimpton’s new Seafire Resort + Spa offers “luxury without the attitude.”


When Kimpton Seafire Resort + Spa opened on Grand Cayman last fall it marked a big step for Kimpton––the brand’s first international property in a long time (a Canadian location closed years ago), and its first true luxury property, according to general manager Steven André.

“Kimpton was looking for the right development partner and the right market for its first international location,” said André. “It’s part of the evolution of the brand.”

A second international Kimpton recently opened in Amsterdam, and there are deals in the works for Paris, Mexico and on Grenada in the Caribbean.

Kimpton, which was bought three years ago by IHG Hotels, increasingly will aim at the top of the market. The difference between it and other luxury brands, André said, is that Kimpton will maintain its unique culture and character developed over 35 years. There will, for instance, still be complimentary afternoon wine tastings and “a more sassy attitude.”

On Grand Cayman, a sense of place
Kimpton’s Seafire Resort + Spa on Grand Cayman offers “true luxury with every finish and every design detail screaming luxury,” André said.

“The sense of place is over the top. Our designers spent a lot of time on the island getting a feel for it. Even the bed board cutouts are reflective of Grand Cayman, as are photos in the lobby and other elements. The hotel’s lobby is elevated 24 feet above sea level so the sea is never out of sight.” 

The 266-room hotel, the first new hotel on Grand Cayman in 11 years, sits on 500 feet of Seven Mile Beach. In high season, a guestroom in the main building will be priced at about $800. There are also three separate bungalows with a total of nine units; they are available at the high end of the resort’s rates.

Bungalow
One of three separate bungalows, with a total of nine units.

The resort offers several dining options, including: Ave, serving Mediterranean cuisine; Avecita, a restaurant within a restaurant that allows nine guests to sit at a counter as the chef cooks, with 30 additional seats at communal tables behind the bar; and Coccoloba, a Caribbean beach bar.

Other resort amenities and services include: Camp Seafire, a “tech-free” kids’ program that invites children to explore Cayman culture; two pools, one adults-only; an 8,500-square-foot spa, including a Turkish Hammam (steam room); and 20,000-square-feet of social and event space.

spa
The spa spans 8,500-square-feet.

Kimpton Seafire already has the highest redemption rate for Kimpton’s Karma loyalty program, which will eventually be merged with IHG Rewards.

Kimpton’s agent outreach
Kimpton Seafire Resort + Spa on Grand Cayman, is the latest hotel to reflect the Kimpton move toward luxury. Others include the Kimpton Gray in Chicago and the Epic in Miami. As a result, André said, Kimpton is establishing relationships with travel agencies and agent groups like Virtuoso and American Express Fine Hotels & Resorts. (Epic was the first Kimpton to be a member of the American Express program.)

Kimpton Seafire Resort + Spa recently hosted Engage!, an event for luxury wedding planners and other wedding professionals.

André said the process of educating the trade about Kimpton’s new direction will be ongoing.

“We offer luxury without the attitude, with many personal touches. There’s a heartfelt connection with guests. You can feel that when you walk into the hotel.”

Ave restaurant
The Ave restuarant serves Mediterranean cuisine.

  1
  0
Tip of the Day
Daily Top List

Best Coastal Florida Cities

1. St. Pete Beach

2. Miami

3. St. Augustine

4. Sarasota/Siesta Key

5. Key West

Source: Thrillist

TMR THIS WEEK
http://services.travelsavers.com/AMGService.svc/REST/GetImage?ImageID=790331bd-ff88-e811-853f-782bcb667b27

Artificial Intelligence is the Future the Jetsons Told Us About

Customer loyalty is the ultimate reward for travel agents who tap into artificial intelligence. While still early in its application to travel, many companies are quickly realizing the need to implement AI to improve their travel customer service and trip planning.

TMR Recommendations
Top Stories
New Zealand Announces New Tourist Tax
New Zealand Announces New Tourist Tax

The tax will be implemented starting in mid-2019.

New York City Council Rules Airbnb Must Disclose Host Information
New York City Council Rules Airbnb Must Disclose Host Information

The ongoing battle between the home-sharing service and the city took another turn. 

EU Says Airbnb Not in Compliance with Consumer Regulations
EU Says Airbnb Not in Compliance with Consumer Regulations

Airbnb has until the end of August to propose changes to make its terms and conditions fairer and easier to understand.

Once Again, Mexico’s San Miguel de Allende Tops Travel + Leisure’s World’s Best List
Once Again, Mexico’s San Miguel de Allende Tops Travel + Leisure’s World’s Best List

Several perennial favorites made the list, but Mexico notably took three of the top 15 spots for the world's best cities.

Perillo Tours to Launch 360 Video Travel Agent Campaign
Perillo Tours to Launch 360 Video Travel Agent Campaign

Virtual reality is gearing up to create vast changes in our culture and entertainment, including the way travel agents sell and the way consumers research travel.

Intrepid Travel to Launch New Backpacking Alternative Tour Brand
Intrepid Travel to Launch New Backpacking Alternative Tour Brand

Tour operator’s sister company, Geckos Adventures, has been absorbed in a strategic move to offer 'stress-free' and a sustainable, affordable alternative to backpacking.

News Briefs
TMR Report Cards
Advertiser's Voice
Advertiser's Voice: Norwegian Cruise Line