Grow with China
--An Exclusive Interview with
Mr. Henry Lee, President, Greater China,
编者按: “李雨生先生于1997 年加入万豪国际集团。2001 年李先生成为万豪国际集团中国、越南及菲律宾等地区的区域营运总监。在2003 年，李先生获擢升为公司中国地区副总裁及中国、越南、菲律宾及马来西亚地区的营运副总裁，并监督区域内所有酒店的日常运作。从2007 至2011 年间，李先生出任大中华区副总裁，管理国内所有酒店。他于2011 年获擢升为大中华区首席营运官兼董事总经理，并担任此职务至2019 年9 月。李先生现今出任万豪国际大中华区总裁，负责该地区内所有万豪国际旗下品牌的酒店，他也是公司亚太地区领导团队的成员。”
Mr. Henry Lee, President, Greater China, Marriott International
万豪国际集团进入中国已有30 多年，在中国的足迹已遍布100 多个城市，运营超400 家酒店。万豪国际集团在中国的发展，事实上是中国经济发展的缩影。中国自改革开放之后，一直以开放包容的态度引入国外品牌。随着中国经济的逐步发展，酒店业也是一片欣欣向荣的场景。尤其是在上海地区，上海是中国最大的经济中心，为万豪国际集团提供了很多发展机遇。李先生非常认可上海对于万豪国际集团的意义，说道：“上海是世界重要金融中心之一，很高兴看到我们在上海的业务也在稳步复苏中，其休闲旅游和商务出行正在逐步恢复。上海对我们来说是非常重要的城市，我们目前在上海运营了53 家品牌酒店，计划在未来几年中，拓展到65 至70 家酒店。我们在上海的业务正在不断扩张，万豪国际集团也在不断发展。”
Mr. Lee Meets China East, Suzhou and Hangzhou
Area Team and General Managers
Mr. Lee Visits South Area Team and General Managers
2020 年疫情爆发，万豪国际集团与当地政府、员工和业主团结一致，迅速应对疫情所带来的挑战，实现业务的稳步复苏。作为扎根于中国三十年的跨国企业，万豪国际集团也始终秉承 “以人为本”的企业文化，在艰难时刻尽力照顾每一位员工。李先生说道：“疫情使我们经历了前所未有的挑战，我们尽可能保障员工的权益，在去年5 月份，我们成立了大中华区职业关爱中心，统一资源调配来为员工提供更多工作机会上的支持。员工可以直接通过邮件、微信、电话联系总部或者酒店总经理分享他们的工作需求，职业关爱中心则根据各酒店的调派需求，时间要求和工作相关性方面进行申请人员的匹配，支持员工的职业发展。酒店恢复分阶段，分地区，我们会将员工调配到恢复较好的酒店以获得更多机会。”自该中心成立至2020 年底，万豪国际集团为员工提供了2900 多个调配岗位和2500 多个内部调任，成功缓和疫情对于员工的巨大冲击。他补充道：“中国政府给我们做了很好的榜样，用实际行动诠释了什么是以人为本，人民至上，我要感谢在2020 年，在大酒店传媒的组织下，上海市副市长陈通会见了包括万豪国际集团在内的十大酒店集团负责人，给予酒店市场恢复的信心。”
Mr. Lee Greets Hotel Associates
Mr. Lee Greets Area Team
万豪国际集团连续十年获得由杰出雇主调研机构评选出的“中国杰出雇主”荣誉，“照顾好我们的员工，我们的员工就会照顾我们的客人” 这是万豪先生(Mr.J.W.Marriott, Jr.) 的座右铭。对此，李先生分享道：“我们从事服务行业，以人为本是首要的，我主动和同事问候，因为他们是我们运营的中坚力量，没有他们，就没有品牌，没有万豪。我们的同事很重要，我们不断发展优秀人才，尤其是本地人才，我们如今的管理团队，77% 是中国籍总经理”。万豪国际集团践行本土化策略，不仅在本土创造了更多就业机会，而且持续深入洞察中国市场，了解宾客需求，进而更好地服务于他们。
Mr. Lee's Visit to Regional Areas
Mr. Lee Visits Area Team and Hotel Associates
Mr. Lee Visits North Area Team
“疫情前后，我们各酒店的客群也产生了一定的变化。”李先生解释道，“在疫情前，国内客人占比是75%，25% 是来自海外，如今，我们95% 的客人来自国内，同时，我们的客群越来越年轻化。他们改变传统观念，学会享受人生，努力工作的同时快乐生活。为了赢取这些年轻客群，我们也必须变得时尚有趣，因此我们引入与其他品牌完全不同的Moxy 酒店品牌，Moxy 品牌为年轻宾客量身打造一个多用途的玩乐空间，宾客可在此尽享妙趣横生的独特入住体验。上海虹桥商务区Moxy 酒店是中国大陆地区第一家Moxy 酒店，未来还将有七家Moxy 酒店在中国大陆开业。”
Moxy Shanghai Hongqiao CBD
充满活力的Moxy 品牌的引入标志着万豪旅享家旗下第24个品牌成功进驻中国大陆，为不同类型的中国宾客呈现多元化品牌矩阵。万豪国际集团还创新推出了“特许经营+”商业模式，为特许经营酒店推荐经过培训的“首任总经理”，该总经理将在其16 个月的任期内（包括4 个月开业筹备期及12 个月运营期），通过深度运用集团成熟的酒店管理体系、强大的资源及工具，在酒店开业后的第一年进一步优化酒店运行，实现双方合作共赢。“我们和业主谋求共同发展。集团会根据实际情况进行相应评估平衡，挑选适合业主的酒店品牌，致力于在合适的位置选择恰当的酒店品牌。我们致力于确保业主对于酒店的投资是有回报的，就比如大陆地区首家Moxy 酒店。”李先生的话语中强调双方共赢才是维持良好的合作关系的首要原则。
上海虹桥商务区Moxy酒店 - 酒吧
Moxy Shanghai Hongqiao CBD - Bar
近年来，中国软实力和文化影响力不断提升，其中城市形象、城市文化便是软实力重要一项。各大城市都在精心设计城市形象，展现独特内涵的城市形象视觉符号体系。五星级酒店作为高端、奢享的标志，有助于提升城市形象和品位，打造城市名片改善当地旅游环境。万豪国际集团作为国际领先的酒店集团之一，致力于在各大城市引进更多的酒店品牌，为城市添增更多亮色。李先生说道：“国内旅游已经成为趋势，大家的眼光从国外转向国内被忽略的城市。酒店成为人们选择城市考虑的重要因素。未来18 个月，三座城市—厦门、长沙和澳门将引进W 品牌。W 是现代奢华的时尚生活品牌，它的入驻，将引领城市潮流新风向。”2021 年，是万豪国际集团开拓业务，积极扩展的一年。除了W 品牌将相继于长沙和厦门亮相，即将开业的西安JW 万豪酒店也将秉承着“JW 非凡款待”理念对待古都的每一位客人；北国冰城的哈尔滨丽思卡尔顿酒店也将更新城市生活方式，打造城市新地标。未来，中国首家The Ritz-Carlton Reserve 也将在四川省九寨沟落地，为慕名而来的客人提供绅士淑女的服务。
厦门W酒店 - 潮堂
W Xiamen - Lobby
长沙W酒店 W Changsha
The Ritz-Carlton Reserve
The Ritz-Carlton, Harbin
酒店为城市带来新鲜面貌，而城市的发展也与酒店息息相关。万豪国际集团时刻注重城市的发展，以做出最有益的规划。李先生在采访过程中，以上海为例，阐述道：“上海作为一个重要的金融中心正持续发展，城市规模正在延伸。自驾游目的地的发展，上海已不仅局限于中心城区，随着五大新城的政策的推进，也让万豪国际集团看到了更多的发展空间。我们在上海的业务正在不断扩张，位于奉贤的上海东方美谷JW 万豪酒店是我们在上海运营的第50 家酒店。我们还计划在上海虹桥商务核心区引进丽思卡尔顿奢华酒店品牌，我们目前所处的上海虹桥商务区Moxy 酒店正处于延伸后的虹桥商务区。”从上海第一家万豪酒店—上海万豪虹桥大酒店到如今的第53 家酒店，万豪国际集团见证了上海的飞速发展，目睹了魔都的日新月异。
JW Marriott Hotel Shanghai Fengxian
上海东方美谷JW万豪酒店 - 大堂
JW Marriott Hotel Shanghai Fengxian - Lobby
JW Marriott Hotel Yinchuan & Courtyard Yinchuan
The St. Regis Qingdao
The Ritz-Carlton Sanya, Yalong Bay
Editor’s Note: “Mr. Henry Lee joined Marriott International in 1997. In 2001, he became Area Director of Operations for China, Vietnam and the Philippines. In 2003, Henry was promoted again to the capacity of Vice President, China, and Vice President of Operations for China, Vietnam, the Philippines and Malaysia. He oversaw all hotel operations in those destinations. Between 2007 and 2011, Henry became Area Vice President, China, and took charge of all hotels in the country. He was promoted to Chief Operations Officer and Managing Director, Greater China in 2011, a capacity he held till September 2019. At present, Henry is President, Greater China, and, is responsible for direct oversight of opening and operating hotels for all brands across Greater China. He is also a member of the Marriott Asia Pacific Continent leadership team.”
This is the second time for Grand Hotels to have the pleasure to talk to Mr. Henry Lee after our first meeting back in 2019. It has been an incredible two years full of unexpected twists and turns for the whole world. While the sudden changes may have left us overwhelmed, after a period of reflection and contemplation, we are always able to pinpoint new opportunities by observing how things develop and evolve. This time, we talk to Henry about Marriott International's journey in China and discuss the brand’s plan for future development.
Marriott International has been in China for over 30 years and is now operating 400 hotels in more than 100 cities. In fact, the development of Marriott International in China is the epitome of the country's economic development. Since the adoption of the reform and opening-up policy, China has been introducing foreign brands into the domestic market with openness and inclusiveness. With continued growth of the national economy, the hotel industry has been thriving as well. Shanghai is a typical example. As the largest economic center in China, the city has provided a variety of growth opportunities to Marriott International. Acknowledges and commending the significance of Shanghai to the Group, Henry said, “It is one of the world's leading financial centers. We are happy to see our business in Shanghai is regaining its momentum with both leisure and business travel getting back on track. Shanghai is a very important city for us. We are currently operating 53 hotels here, and in the next few years, we are targeting to expand and increase that number to 65 to 70. Shanghai has been growing uninterruptedly, and will continue to grow in the future.”
When the pandemic broke out in 2020, Marriott International worked closely with local governments, hotel associates, and property owners to respond to the challenges posed by the emergency and ensured a well-paced recovery of the business. As a multinational company that has operated in China for 30 years, the Group has been committed to its core value of putting people first and tries its best to take care of every associate despite difficult times. Henry said, “The pandemic has been an unprecedented challenge and we have tried our best to safeguard the rights and benefits of our associates. In May 2020, we launched the Marriott International Greater China CareerCare Center, a centralized portal with resources to help various associate to find assignments. Associates may contact the regional team or the general manager of a hotel directly by email, Wechat and telephone to share their needs in seeking jobs. By matching applicants with positions based on taskforce vacancies of hotels, time requirement and experience relevancy, the CareerCare Center offers strong support to our people in career development. Since business recovery was carried out in stages and by areas, we would transfer associates to hotels showing good momentum so that the salary plan can be competitive.” By the end of 2020, the CareerCare Center has filled more than 2,900 taskforce positions and completed 2,500 internal transfer roles, successfully minimizing the pandemicinduced impact on associates. Henry added, “The Chinese government has set a prominent example for us. China’s resolute actions in responding to the pandemic is a true manifestation of what “putting people first” and “a people-centered approach” means. I also greatly appreciate the meeting between the management of ten major hotel groups, with Marriott International being one of them, and Mr. Chen Tong, Deputy Mayor of Shanghai, thanks to the support and organization of the Grand Hotels. That has really boosted our confidence in the market recovery.
Marriott International has been recognized as a Top Employer in China by the Top Employers Institute in the past 10 consecutive years, which truly reflects the motto of Mr. Bill Marriott, “We believe in taking care of our associates, and they will take care of our customers.”Henry said, “Putting people first is the most important concept for a company in the service industry. I greet every colleague because they are the vital force to our operational success. Without them, we would never build an excellent brand, and Marriott International would not be where we are today. Associates are our priority, and therefore we are committed to supporting their career development, especially among local talents. In our senior management team, 77% of them are Chinese general managers.” By executing localized strategies, Marriott International manages to create more jobs and opportunities for local talents and maintains a strong insight into the domestic market. This also allows us to understand the needs of our guests and provide better service to them in return.
“We also observed a certain level of change in our prepandemic and post-pandemic customer groups.” Henry explained to us, “Before the outbreak, 75% of room nights in China were sourced from domestic guests while 25% were international. Currently, we see the domestic number increased to 95%. In addition, we start to have a younger generation of travelers, who are breaking away from traditions and have learned to enjoy life. They are hard-working and determined to seeking happiness. To attract young guests, we must become fashionable and inspiring as well. Therefore, we have introduced Moxy to China, which is entirely different from any other conventional brands. By creating a versatile playful space for the young and the young-at-heart, Moxy aims to surprise travelers with a spirited and fun guest experience. Moxy Shanghai Hongqiao CBD is the brand’s debut in the mainland of China. Moxy Hotels also plans to open seven additional properties in the mainland.”
The opening of Moxy marks the entry of Marriott Bonvoy’s 24th brand into the mainland of China – a testament to the focus on bringing a diversified portfolio for different types of travelers in and to China. Marriott International has also innovatively launched a “Franchise Plus” model, where the Group would recommend trained senior hotel executives to be “launch general managers” at franchised properties. Within the 16-month term, including 4 months of pre-opening and 12 months into operations, the general manager will draw on the mature hotel management experience as well as the powerful resources and toolkits of Marriott International to optimize operations of the hotel in the first year after the opening in order to secure win-win cooperation. “We are committed to mutual development with property owner partners. With careful review and evaluation of the actual circumstances, the Group selects hotel brands suitable for the owner and tries its best to ensure having the right brand at the right location. We are committed to ensuring reasonable returns for the hotel owner or franchisee. The first Moxy hotel is a vivid example of our efforts in this regard.”Henry emphasized that mutual benefit is the primary principle in maintaining a healthy partnership.
In recent years, China enjoys an increasing soft power and cultural influence in the world. The image and culture of cities is also an important component of a country’s soft power. Major cities in China have been working actively to enhance their city image by showcasing an urban system with unique and meaningful visual elements. As a symbol of high-end and luxury, five-star hotels play an important role in promoting the image and taste of cities, acting as a memorable landmark and enhancing the local tourism environment. A leading international hotel group, Marriott International is committed to introducing more hotels into a variety of cities as a contribution to their urban landscape. Henry said, “There has been an evident boom in domestic tourism, and people are shifting away from overseas destinations to cities in China that have been previous overlooked. Hotel accommodation has become an important factor in decision-making when people select which city to visit. In the future 18 months, Xiamen, Changsha, and Macau will each see the introduction and opening of a W Hotel. As a modern luxury lifestyle brand, W Hotels will bring a trendy cool atmosphere to the cities.” 2021 has been a year of continued expansion and growth of Marriott International. Apart from the expected openings of W Changsha and W Xiamen, JW Marriott Xi’an, which is soon to be opened, looks forward to receiving guests in the ancient capital with its iconic concept of ‘The JW Treatment’; The Ritz-Carlton, Harbin will refresh the urban lifestyle and create a new landmark for the Ice City of China. In the future, when the first Ritz-Carlton Reserve in China is launched in Jiuzhaigou, Sichuan Province, it will offer excellent service to guests and carry on the brand’s motto of "We are Ladies and Gentlemen serving Ladies and Gentlemen."
As hotels bring new vitality to cities, the development of cities has a great impact on hotels as well. Marriott International keeps a close watch on the development of cities to facilitate effective planning. During our conversation, Henry gave the example of Shanghai, “Shanghai is growing fast as a key financial center with expanding city size. With more and more road trip destinations emerging, Shanghai has reached far beyond its central urban areas. With the development of the five new towns in the Qingpu, Fengxian, Jiading, Nanhui, and Songjiang districts, new opportunities are starting to unfold. Our business in Shanghai has been expanding as well. The JW Marriott Hotel Shanghai Fengxian, which is located in Fengxian District, marks the 50th hotel we operate in the city. Following the Moxy Shanghai Hongqiao CBD located in the extended area of the Hongqiao central business district, we are also planning to introduce the luxury Ritz-Carlton brand into the Hongqiao CBD area.” From the opening of the first Marriott hotel, the Shanghai Marriott Hotel Hongqiao, to the current 53 hotels in Shanghai, Marriot International has witnessed the rapid growth of the city and the magical changes that have taken place.
As the narrator and spokesman of Marriott International in China, Henry carries the compassion, composure, and equanimity of a seasoned hotelier. He is true to his original aspirations and yet keeps pace with the times. A visionary leader, Henry is attentive to details, decisive, humble, and open-minded. In our interview, he expressed his unwavering confidence in China’s development and the determination of Marriott International to grow with the country. He said, “I think China has a power of consumption that should never be underestimated. The Chinese government has also been committed to driving domestic consumption, a strategy that had been effective years before the pandemic broke out. If we look at the growth of Hainan, the city is likely to become one of the largest duty-free markets in the world. What lies beneath the amazing consumption power of China is its magnificent growth. Marriott International is a leading international hotel management corporation with a long-term vision for continued growth. China, therefore, is a very important market for the Group. I look forward to more hotels of Marriott International’s brands to be opened here and make their due contribution to the tourism development in China.”At the end of the interview, Henry expressed his hope in talking to Grand Hotels again in the near future about the new development of Marriott International in China. With great honor and appreciation, we look forward to the early arrival of that opportunity.