Known as one of the most stylish hotels in Kuala Lumpur, the 108-room Izumi Hotel Bukit Bintang provides a wide range of luxurious amenities, catering to both business and leisure guests. The bustling central location of the hotel offers visitors everything from shopping centers to nightclubs, while still providing breathtaking city views of Malaysia.
"Not only has the number of direct bookings gone up with Windsurfer,
but the quality of those bookings has increased. I feel like anything is possible now."
—Hatta Othman, Manager of Corporate Sales and eCommerce, Izumi Hotel
When Hatta Othman first came to Izumi as Manager of Corporate Sales and eCommerce, the hotel was functioning within a confining booking system yielding disappointing outcomes. "Our occupancy rate was only 50%," he said. "And it didn't look like anything was going to change." Not only was their occupancy rate low, but the rooms they were booking were majority OTA-driven and often for the least desirable of their rooms. "We had 90% of our bookings going to a channel that mostly just booked our studio, our least expensive rooms," Hatta explained. "It was very frustrating." To improve revenues and make guests aware of Izumi's better rooms, Hatta knew he would have to somehow increase direct bookings.
Using Windsurfer, Hatta and his staff have experienced many improvements in not only number of, but quality of bookings and revenue generated. "With Windsurfer, it's easy to build customized packages with perks that appeal to our unique guest market," he said. "We can offer deals for events like school holidays, Asian High Tea, plus fun mid-week specials." And it's the ability to build these customized packages that is driving the increase in direct bookings, which are in turn driving up revenues. "Most of our guests do not book studio rooms now because they are more often booking direct and so, can see all the rooms instead f just the studio rooms on the OTAs," he explained. An added benefit of Windsurfer for Hatta is its ease of use. "I thought for a system this good, I was going to need a lot of instruction," he explained. "But really, I mostly just figured it out on my own, and then taught it to my staff, no problem."
Izumi's numbers prove out Hatta's confidence. From 2014 to 2015, the hotel saw only a 5% improvement in direct bookings. But since adopting Windsurfer and Hatta's strategy of using its persuasive messaging to build the most attractive packages possible, the numbers have climbed significantly. "It's so awesome," he said. "Year over year, we've gone up about 20% in direct bookings, and our occupancy rate has soared from 50% to 80%."
One of Hatta's main goals for Izumi is to increase direct bookings another 20% by continuing to build more and better packages using every new booking feature Windsurfer offers.
"My background is with 5-star hotels where often systems and strategies are already set in stone," Hatta said. "But here at Izumi, and with Windsurfer and SHR at my service, we are going to make our own destiny happen. There's nowhere to go but up."