THE Domain Hotels have announced a first of its kind hotel-club concept in Bahrain. Located in Manama’s Diplomatic District, The Domain Bahrain will be a socially charged members club with an accommodation offering of the highest levels.
Announcing The Doman’s launch at ITB Berlin last month, general manager, Patrick de Groot, describes The Domain as a building waiting for stories.
“The social element is so ingrained in everything we have created we cannot wait for the doors to open.
“People are at the heart of our concept. How they work, how they live, how they enjoy life and express their individuality. We have to adapt ourselves to their lives and not the other way around.”
The Domain slogan states ‘Stay Work Play’ because the team believes that in today’s world so much media, entertainment, technology, style and sociability is integrated into our work. Play is a core theme but the hotel also bills itself as a “place for grownups”.
De Groot explains, “Warm-hearted hospitality means that we welcome everyone, but The Domain has a distinctly adult vibe that is cool and sexy, so it is not a natural family draw. We cannot be all things to all people, but younger guests will be well looked after.”
Members at the Domain will enjoy perks like three overnight stays, preferential rates on rooms, suites, meals, catered events and retail, as well as opt-ins for spa and health club benefits. But the true benefit of club membership is its social engagement with events taking place all around the year.
As part of this platform guests can also engage in The Conversation, trademarked social media platform allowing them to speak to each other, so they can meet up and make business or social connections in actual time. The aim is to foster a true community and to share adventures and experiences by connecting like- minded people.
“We are truly serious about calling ourselves modernist and social. For us, that does not mean simply engaging on Facebook or Twitter, it means moving those social media outlets off the screen and into real life. They are great tools, but we need a bit of old fashioned clubhouse cool. You can sleep here, eat here, party here, try new things, meet new friends,” says De Groot.
Because it is a member’s club first and foremost, The Domain has taken a 30/70 hotel mix of rooms to F&B. De Groot explains, “We cannot say that we are a member’s club and that sociability is at our core, if we would have a typical hotel mix”.
The boutique property also houses 61 luxury suites and 68 rooms. Leaving behind the traditional lobby, guests at the Domain is greeted by a Domain manager, who quickly ushers them up to their room to check them in and introduce them to their butler. Rooms and suites are all serviced by floor butlers, who handle everything once the guest is checked in. Although butlers seem very old fashioned, De Groot stipulates that they are “Old World butlers with New World ways”.
As a team, Domain Managers and Butlers make sure every aspect of the guest’s stay is handled with grace and efficiency. Guests even have the chance to customise aspects of their stay through a proprietary app linked to the property’s website, called Master of Your Domain, before or during their stay.
The Domain is also home to the Vie spa and Vie Fitness health centre spread over two floors as well as 375 m of flexible meeting space, including three tech-enabled boardrooms, three meeting rooms and a pre-function foyer with a capacity of up to 110 guests for dinner.
With a total of nine restaurants and lounges, it is truly a destination for food culture. The Txoko sky lounge; Imari Japanese restaurant; the Le Sauvage and Le Domain , dedicated to French cuisine; The Living Room serving classic Italian and Lebanese; The Cigar Lounge and The Deli are some of the dining options for guests.
Another unique offering is Anthology, the world’s first dedicated social video lounge with live content, like videos, could be collected and shared amongst friends. The Domain culture is an area where the team is breaking new ground, certainly for the Gulf region. Like any five-star luxury property, the service standards are exceptionally high, but there is a definitive move away from over-service to a model of service that is gracious but streamlined, easy and warm-hearted.
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