INSIDE OUTLETS: Rococo at Sofitel Jumeirah

Studying the strategy behind Dubai's newest Italian eatery

Seeking out the hottest new F&B outlets,Caterer Middle East reveals the innovative concepts and operation strategies securing the success of the region’s new launches

A rainbow of colours tempered by cool European design, Sofitel Dubai Jumeirah Beach’s signature restaurant Rococo embodies elegant Italia. But this is a country whose cuisine has already been adopted by numerous outlets across the region; how will this one stand out?

The property’s F&B director Laurent Boisdon explains: “Dubai is a multicultural destination where Italian concepts are well perceived; Rococo aims to be one of the top Italian restaurant destinations in town.”

With the hotel currently in its soft-opening phase, it is a prime opportunity for “fine-tuning and adjusting the product”, says Boisdon. “Pre-opening is always exiting, but also challenging; there are different stages to go through before you can see the final product and discover whether your vision fits the décor and ambiance,” he notes.

However Boisdon is confident the offering will stand out amongst the proliferation of other Italian eateries. “Rococo will be known as a free-standing restaurant, not a Sofitel restaurant,” he asserts.

Conceding that the downturn has brought about a significant slow-down in consumer spending, Boisdon notes that prior to opening, the team did notice a change in the market. “We took it seriously and adjusted our menu pricing strategy accordingly,” he explains.

Moving forward, Boisdon is confident that the outlet’s proactive promotional strategy will help generate significant footfall.

“We plan to encourage our in-house guests through our concierges continuously promoting and our internal associates cross-selling, as well as attracting outside guests through an aggressive marketing radio campaign, doorknob promotions for local residents and extensive PR and web forums,” he reveals.

“But ultimately, the key to succeeding is to constantly question how you can do better and improve the guest experience.”

Design details

“The key to the interior is eye-catching contemporary style with sumptuous themes, incorporating colours ranging from earth tones to the most intense hues: deep violet walls, burgundy glass pendants, saffron leather chairs and a black marble floor.”

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“Be patient; choose your designer carefully to make sure they can match with your vision, and insist on just the right small details so you reach the standard you are loking for.”

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