Established in 1988, the Hyatt Regency hotel in Cologne was one of the first five-star hotels in the city and was the first Hyatt brand hotel in Germany. The Hyatt Cologne operates within the leisure and business sectors and is regularly used as a conference base. The hotel offers 306 rooms, 18 of which are suites. These include eight regency suites, four executive suites, one presidential suite and one apartment for long term guests. Other facilities include a large 1100 sq m conference area, with a 600 sq m ballroom and eight other conference rooms of varying sizes.
The Hyatt Cologne is situated on the banks of the Rhine, directly across from the inner city, which is a mere five minute walk away over the river bridge. The hotel’s prime location offers stunning views of the old town of Cologne and of the cathedral. Committed to providing a five-star quality of service to clients, the Hyatt Cologne has a number of various bars and restaurants to suit individual tastes. These include the Schälsick Bar, the hotel’s in-house pub and the summer Beergarden located directly on the banks of the river. The hotel’s main restaurant is The Glashaus, which is situated in a large glass atrium and offers a variety of foods including a Mediterranean kitchen.
Michael Werner, director of sales and marketing at Hyatt Cologne, highlights the benefits of being part of the larger Hyatt group: “Within the group there is a huge network of colleagues, who each have their own key clients and relationships. We benefit from these relationships and our colleagues benefit from our client relations so it’s quite a strategic network. There is also a real wealth of knowledge within the group regarding different markets and how to approach these, so it’s a very positive set-up.”
Earlier this year whilst many other companies were tightening their belts, the Hyatt Cologne invested five million euros into a major refurbishment programme. Completed only a few months ago, the programme included the complete refurbishment of all the hotel’s bedrooms, which now have a new contemporary style. This was followed with the conference and function rooms including a stunning Swarovski crystal chandelier in the ballroom. Michael focuses on the reasons behind the refurbishment: “We have always been very good at maintaining the hotel and at addressing any issues immediately, but it is important to remain competitive within the market and we felt that this was the ideal time for us to update the hotel’s image. So far the feedback from our customers has been fantastic so it has been a very positive investment.”
He continues with the company’s plans for the further refurbishment of the site: “We are currently looking at refurbishing the public areas and our main restaurant The Glashaus during next summer, which will mean we will then have an entirely new product of a very high standard.”
Despite the competitive nature of the hospitality and leisure industries, the Hyatt Cologne has continued to maintain its strong presence within the market. Michael highlights what differentiates the Hyatt Cologne from its competitors: “Of course our recent refurbishment is a real boost to our profile but I think what differs us most from other companies is the personality of the hotel. We have a very strong and attentive staff team with excellent soft skills and this is a key strength for us. Our staff diversity is also beneficial as we have many different nationalities working with us, which helps us to provide a better level of service to our guests. It is also a huge advantage within the market to have specialist chefs in the kitchen from say Asia or Italy who can produce authentic meals.”
Looking to the future, Michael is positive about the recovery of the market following the economic crisis and sees many opportunities for Hyatt Cologne: “At the moment we are seeing a really good development in the business. The market is picking up again and we’re seeing positive booking numbers for the coming months. Although it will take a couple of years for the market to recover fully, we continue to identify possibilities for the company and believe that within every challenge lies an opportunity for development.”