Deepak Ohri honored with ‘World’s Leading Travel Personality’ Award 2019


03 December 2019, Muscat, Oman : On 27th November, Deepak Ohri, CEO of lebua Hotels & Resorts, was bestowed the honor of ‘World’s Leading Travel Personality’ at the 26th Annual World Travel Awards Grand Final Gala Ceremony in Muscat, Oman. Recognizing Ohri as an ‘exemplary torch-bearer of undisputed industry excellence and a power of good to the world of travel’, the World Travel Awards Academy reviewed candidates and unanimously agreed to formally honor the businessman.

Ohri has made valuable contributions to exceedingly crucial fundamental ideas within the industry, while at the same time pushing boundaries with lateral thinking to redefine what luxury means.

Looking into different business approaches, he identified that only the ‘intangible’ had the movement to flourish within hospitality. Rooms are tangible; one knows from the moment you step into the booking process the features are fairly standard – a bed, a bathroom, a TV. However, while there can be luxury elements there is nothing visceral. His strategy for brand survival was to create memories through emotional experiences via food and beverage, tapping into the market for intangible experiences. Showing that his method has proven successful for lebua Hotels & Resorts, the hotel has seen average stays grow from employing two crucial tactics – refining service processes and fostering financially sustainable growth models – fostered a healthy financial growth model. A contradictory method, both science and intuition are used to engineer the perfect storm; it’s a delicate balance that takes into account a many opposing factors – such as guests vs staff ratio – to ensure that services are perceptive and engaging without being too stifling or too empty, yet each venue is profitable due to carefully planned commercial calculations. His processes are now considered the gold standard within the industry.

This shift towards dining experiences has seen hotels guests that are dining with us stay an extra day on average – accounting for 20-25% of hotel guests. The average stay in Bangkok is for just 1.8 days, however lebua Hotels & Resorts has seen that those seeking an experiential element to their getaway tend to extend their stay in order to maximize their time here.

Ohri launched lebua Hotels & Resorts in 2003 with a single restaurant. It is now the world’s first vertical destination, and the only hotel to house two MICHELIN-Starred restaurants, with 11 unique bars and restaurants. In addition to his duties as CEO, he is a notable public speaker, having been invited to prestigious speaking events such as New York Times International Luxury Conference, INSEAD Paris, World Travel and Tourism Council Global Travel and Tourism Summit. He also guest lectures at highly respected business schools such as Harvard Business School, Columbia University, NYU Stern School of Business, and MIT Sloan, where he also mentors students.