Loyalty pays rich dividends

News, Front of House

The Leela Palaces, Hotels and Resorts and Fellow Global Hotel Alliance Member Brands Deliver Global Recognition and Amazing Local Experiences in the World’s Most Exciting Locales. Experience life as a maharaja in India, get tickets to see Chelsea FC play at Stamford Bridge in London or enjoy an excellent opportunity to view the world of Ocean Park’s pandas from the inside, in Hong Kong.

And just when it seems they cannot be impressed any further, tell your friends these experiences were accomplished in between business meetings. Today, Global Hotel Alliance (GHA), the world’s largest alliance of independent hotel brands, officially launches GHA Discovery.

The new GHA Discovery program – the first-ever, uniting independent luxury hotel brands – was created to deliver recognition and experience-based rewards across 12 brands and nearly 300 hotels globally, turning a business trip or weekend getaway into a one-of-a-kind adventure. With a heightened level of personalized service, as opposed to the more conventional points, the program also provides access to more than 1000 exceptional Local Experiences – designed by the local hotel employees to provide exclusive access to off-the-beaten path activities around the world.

Local experiences vary by membership level – the higher the membership level, the more exclusive the reward. After just one qualifying stay at a GHA member hotel, Gold Level members can take a leisurely backwater cruise on the Ashtamudi lake while watching the colourful kingfishers fly along and enjoy a traditional Kerala lunch “sadhya” served on a banana leaf or take a tour of the Federal Bank and see the world’s largest gold vault in New York or experience a nostalgic trishaw ride and see Singapore from a different perspective. Guests who reach the Black Level membership can enjoy access to a private cruise in the US along the Potomac in a former Presidential yacht, a helicopter tour over the LA skyline or develop their own customized ringtone at Microsoft Studios in Seattle.

The Black Level experience at The Leela Palaces, Hotels and Resorts takes you to the royal and exotic city of Udaipur. Voted by the readers of Travel + Leisure, US as ‘The World’s Best City’ in 2009, Udaipur is the quintessential land of the maharajas. With the architectural heritage of this city intact and a king (though now in name only) who lives in the City Palace and still commands the love and respect of the locals, a “Local Experience” at The Leela Palace Udaipur would entail having a custom-fitted traditional outfit befitting a king/queen; a full day tour of the city in your own vintage car and a private meal in the City Palace, overlooking the magical city of Udaipur.

Sanjoy Pasricha, Vice President – Sales and Marketing, The Leela Palaces, Hotel and Resorts said, “We are extremely delighted to partner with GHA Discovery! GHA Discovery gives us the opportunity that allows travellers to explore behind the scenes and beneath the surface while experiencing unique activities in authentic local settings, by repetitive stays at seven Leela hotels or across 48 countries at 300 hotels in India”.

Based on the airline alliance model, GHA is the world’s largest alliance of independent hotel brands. Five years of technological development, collaboration, research and strategy went into creating GHA Discovery. Each member brand utilizes a consistent reservations and customer database platform enabling guests’ membership status and personal preferences to be recognized at all hotels – regardless of the brand.

“GHA Discovery was built with the philosophy that recognition and authentic, local experiences – and not just collecting points – are the true pillars of a rewarding hotel loyalty program”, said Chris Hartley, CEO of the Global Hotel Alliance. “Whether taking advantage of spare time on a business trip or exploring a destination through a local’s eyes on a weekend, the guest experience begins with personal recognition at the front desk of our hotel brands and is made richer with adventures that are not easily accessible to the general public.”

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