Power List 2019
Jitu Virwani
Power List 2019 - Jitu Virwani

Jitu Virwani

Chairman & MD, Embassy group
Though not averse to taking risks, Virwani approaches the hospitality business with caution.

The real estate baron is a new entrant on Hotelier India’s power list for the opening of the second Four Seasons property in India earlier this year. Four Seasons Bengaluru is a sprawling and extravagant hotel and branded residences, which combines the best of luxury and global hospitality. Virwani said at the opening of the hotel, “The many synergies in our culture, service offerings, and vision between Four Seasons and the Embassy Group have brought us together to create this iconic asset.”

The hotel comes two years after Embassy bought a stake in MAC Charles, which owned Le Meridien Bengaluru. In 2018, Hilton announced two new properties in Bengaluru with Embassy Group. The 500 room dual-branded hotel that features a Hilton Hotels & Resorts and a Hilton Garden Inn hotel in the same complex will be located within the 100-acre Embassy TechVillage Business Park near Marathalli.

By aligning his group with global hospitality brands such as Four Seasons and Hilton, and positioning the hotels within their vibrant business parks, the Bengaluru based realtor is aiming high. Embassy has planned for 1,400 keys over a four-year timeframe, across luxury, upscale and midscale segments. Embassy, under Virwani, is focussed on hotels as a relevant component of their integrated developments offering synergies between offices, hotels, conferencing, retail and F&B.

Virwani is known as a visionary. He began his real estate career in his father, Mohan Virwani’s construction business as a teenager and went on to set up a development dynasty in 1993 with a borrowed capital of $50,000. The company was renamed Embassy Property Developments. And now, he has acquired another distinction, that of a passionate hotelier.

In an interview with Hotelier India Virwani had said, “Our selection of brands is based on what fits best with our hotel strategy and resonates with our target audience. We aim to provide our corporate occupiers world-class services and recognisable international brands that offer products at two price points - good quality F&B offerings, and a capacity to manage MICE/convention space operations. Though not averse to taking risks, Virwani, much like all good investors-owners, approaches the hospitality business with caution. “We recognise that this segment of real estate is not standardised and the returns are based on human expectations on both sides. Alignment is critical to securing the right deal. We are taking an opportunistic approach and willing to wait to get the right deal at the right price.”

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