Design & Decision creates a Veranda brand

Behind the success of Veranda Resorts, the accommodation has been ranked in the hearts of both Thai and foreign tourists. Under the management of Mr. Weerawat Ongvasit, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Veranda Resort Public Company Limited. There are many interesting stories and experiences. Since the beginning of the location, search Building a brand with a unique style, business expansion, business risk management planning by opening a real estate business in a location near the hotel, marketing strategy to coping in times of crisis. And the readiness of Veranda After unlocking to welcome the return of tourists again.


Pioneering the resort business with "location"

Khun Werawat has a degree in finance and has a family background in a construction business. After the 1997 crisis, when Khun Weerawat decided to pioneer the resort business in the form of Lifestyle Marketing that will be an interesting business trend in Thailand in the long term. Choosing "location" is the key. Khun Weerawat chose to build the first resort in Cha-am. Because when compared, the land of Cha-am was cheaper than Hua Hin which keeps costs down. Brought to the creation of Veranda Resort & Villas Hua Hin Cha Am - M Gallery. It is a small beach resort in a design hotel that was new 15 years ago. By focusing on low investment and beautiful design and with a large common area. Which even in those days, there were no social media but people staying here love to take pictures and send emails. Including on the covers of various travel magazines and making Cha-am more popular with Thai tourists.

The second resort chain opened in Chiang Mai. By Khun Weerawat chose a location outside the city because of seeing that there are few hotels along the hillside that are beautiful, the Veranda High Resort Chiang Mai - M Gallery was built. There is a difference with the highlight: a large swimming pool amid mountain views. Which received a very good response, coinciding with the year 2011, Chiang Mai tourism has grown to become a popular destination for Chinese tourists.

Then the third resort expansion to Pattaya. Khun Wirawat still adheres to the original idea of ​​choosing a location "Na Jomtien" where the land price is not very high. Causing the cost not too high to compare with North-Central-South Pattaya. In addition, there are not many hotels around Jomtien. And what's special is Veranda Resort Pattaya Na Jomtien - M Gallery has a 32-story Veranda Residence Pattaya condo project behind it as the first Residence in the chain. Which allows faster payback and the business expanded faster. In addition to these three resorts, the Veranda chain also has So Sofitel in Bangkok and Rocky Boutique Resort in Koh Samui. Khun Weerawat said that having several resorts in the chain is a plus for customers who buy vouchers. There are options to stay anywhere in the chain.

In view of the Khun Weerawat Competition is what makes businesses adapt. Finding things that serve customers better at the lowest cost. As in the past, when the renovation was closed in the low season, it took the shortest time. And when it opens new, customers must feel that there has been a change. Which is to help Uplift the brand. However, using the same brand name has the advantages that when opening a new resort, the old resort also has more people to stay. But to do this, it requires the same level of good brand standard. For example, when it is a Veranda brand, people must think of a beach resort with rooms, good restaurants, beautiful swimming pools, etc.

Create charm for the brand Veranda

Branding It is the heart of Veranda's marketing in the beginning. Khun Virawat wants to build Veranda brand to be different. Has a high individuality. Reflect the image of the brand through design, pool area arrangement, room usage details that are different from others such as Pool Villa, Beach Front Pool Villa, etc. It has become a place where people want to take pictures, want to share, which is not a matter of hardware, but "Brand Positioning" and "Brand Identity". For example, the Pattaya branch features a Pool Suite room with a swimming pool on the balcony. The branch in Chiang Mai has a swimming pool in the middle of mountain views, etc.

Khun Weerawat recalls the meaning of the name Veranda in English, meaning a covered balcony. Choosing this name because it feels like Relax and can be in Thai or English. As for the name M Gallery, it is an Accor Group boutique brand that helps with room standards. But in terms of marketing and sales, it is still under the management of Khun Weerawat. In private, Brand Persona is not limited to gender, age can change indefinitely but reflect himself. Veranda's customer group is different. Hua Hin Resort and Pattaya are Thais. About 30% in Chiang Mai, but in Bangkok and Samui is 100%, foreign customers.

As the design is an integral part of the Veranda brand and is a long-term collaboration. Khun Weerawat therefore carefully selects a design company that understands the needs of the Veranda brand that needs a different design and gimmicks such as Pool Suite with Bunk Bed to meet family customers.
Which must include the customer's perspective on value and differentiation which makes it clear that chic/cool customers will come here.

However, in the hotel business, things will make customers come back to us again is not just about design But what is important is the service of the staff delivering it to the customers, which the hospitality of the hotel team is very important. It's not just marketing. 

Businessmen must be well-rounded.

In the opinion of Khun Weerawat Businessmen must have all-round skills. (Well-rounded), including Financing and Construction skills. That is to bring all kinds of skills Come to think of a different business model. Khun Weerawat himself started from the hotel business and residence then expanded to more food and beverage businesses such as the Scoop Beach Café in Pattaya and Hua Hin. By bringing ice cream at So Sofitel to create a special menu for Beach Café. Including the recently launched 3 Kof coffee shops in Bangkok, and at the end of 2019, the opening of the Gram Pancake franchise bought from Osaka and the Pablo Cheese Tart shop.

For reasons that come to the food and beverage business Khun Weerawat believes that P / E in this segment is lower than the hotel business. And is a service business with many bases and elements like the hotel business. But not limited to being in a hotel can be opened as a store in the mall or stand-alone. Khun Wirawat will focus on being a coffee shop, a snack shop, a beverage shop that is a lifestyle rather than a restaurant that is more difficult to do. Which stores with brands will be different and can sell as Delivery as well. Focus on Design Branding and Wrap up, along with Efficiency, Cash Flow Management, etc. Khun Weerawat said that each company has different strengths. When able to find the strength of the company Then applied to other products That are similar in making Brand Positioning, Hospitality, Service, Product Differentiation, and present to customers. Make customers like and take pictures and share them on social media.

What he wants to do in 2020

After Veranda was listed on the stock exchange in 2019, Khun Weerawat looked at the picture of the Veranda branch expansion to Phuket. Because it is a time when an investment is not expensive This includes the opening of 39 rooms brands new "Verso Huahin" adjacent to the Veranda Residence Hua-Hin project.
However, due to the COVID-19 crisis, Khun Werawat has stopped making unnecessary investments. Adjust the business plan to keep cash with the company. As for the administration, it is important to focus on all stakeholders so they can go through the crisis together. Including strategy to shortening each period. Such as during March - April Focus on cash storage may think of a plan to resume the service, lock as many customers as possible, and let customers return to Veranda faster than anywhere else. It uses strengths, brands, media campaigns, followed by helping people return to travel easier for less.

As for the question of what percentage of tourism is back now? Khun Weerawat sees that in the tourist zone where are not popular for Thai, there is still serious pain. The situation is still very difficult, including hotels, restaurants, tour buses, etc. In which the need to help the tourism sector Because the tourism sector has helped support the country for a long time.

Make customers think off-brand all the time.

Khun Werawat stated that the principle is to understand the customers as much as possible by doing a survey and customer interviews. The lockdown had to keep the hotel ready to open again. Along with thinking of the campaign that must be the most bang in the short term. Without affecting the long-term on the day that foreign customers will return. It's a mix of marketing with vision. Think about the rise as well. And find a way to generate income. Which the price level is now considered cheaper than the period before COVID-19 Even the expensive level still exists, but we must make customers come to travel without feeling too expensive. There is an affordable level that he can reach some point.

The idea was brought up in a 500-baht discount of the 2,000-baht campaign that was launched during the week of the end of May. By selling through Live. That comes to sell online because people will have easy access. No need to leave the house. And package details designed to focus on flexibility (Flexibility) can be used at any Veranda location. Can be used to reserve any type of room Go whenever you want. Customers will not have to think a lot about who to go with, where to buy them first, and then think about the details later. Including the inexpensive package for customers to make the easiest buying decision. Some operators focus on promotions for selling the standard room at the lowest price. But when the time comes for the customer to book the room is full. But selling this discount Voucher is to solve Pain Point about that room type is full because customers can use the Voucher as a discount for all types of rooms.

Advice for businessman

For the crisis entrepreneurs are facing Khun Weerawat advised that if any project can be stopped Especially things that do not produce fruit Then stop it first. Some strokes must be introverted. You must save as much as you can. However, in the opinion of Khun Weerawat In Thailand, the hotel business is good long-term business.

However, the administration needs to use knowledge in many areas. If missing anywhere, you must find a consultant. The most important thing is to make customers get the most value. For example, the promotion that Veranda offers is to bring a discount that must be paid to the Online Travel Agency (OTA) to its customers instead. Which although OTA is indispensable to reach customers, on a day, when everything is pressing, and the foreign customer base disappears. It is necessary for Thai customers to have access to this at an affordable cost.

Khun Weerawat concluded that the online channel like social media and website is important. Because they are new tools in communicating with customers, not the only sales channel. And should launch a campaign differently, make customers want to open a limited-edition voucher, and focus on flexibility. Make small things a priority, accessible and tangible for everyone with a customer-centric approach. Make small things a priority, accessible and tangible for everyone with a customer-centric approach.

Watch SCBTV SCB TV series "VITAMIN SEA" add vitamins, business knowledge from the most amazing beach hotel. By Khun Werawat Ongvasit, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Veranda Resort Public Company Limited Click -Here