Archipelago International CEO John Flood shared insights into how the company stayed afloat during the pandemic, and what its plans are for the future.


In a recent interview, John Flood, Chief Executive of Archipelago International, shared insights on how the hotel management company navigated the pandemic and its plans for the future.

Flood revealed that their survival strategy during the pandemic was to be the "last man standing." He explained, "We reduced expenses and stayed open, knowing that government and business travel would continue." Aggressive online sales and promotions also played a crucial role in breaking even, while they utilized the downtime to enhance processes and develop new software.

Expanding internationally, Archipelago International capitalized on opportunities left by competitors, securing deals in Saudi Arabia and Cuba. Their "Powered by Archipelago" service, which provides online connectivity and distribution to non-chain hotels, gained popularity in several countries. Flood emphasized, "It's a one-stop shop that non-chain hotels really need."

Currently managing 162 hotels across various countries, Archipelago International is recognized for brands like Aston, Fave, Harper, Alana, and Neo. Their aim is to manage 500 hotels and have 2,000 under their Powered by Archipelago system within the next five years. Recently, they launched the Huxley brand targeting a young, exclusive audience.

Flood highlighted flexibility and perseverance as qualities that set Archipelago International apart. "We do what we say we will do," he emphasized. Their mission is to bring Asian hospitality, design, and service to a wide audience. They prioritize staff training, continuous improvement, and aligning strategy with culture to drive success.

Archipelago International values the diverse cultures of its locations. Flood stated, "We design hotels, services, and training to reflect the local culture. We strive for a total service culture." They prioritize guest feedback, constant learning, and exceeding expectations. Their focus on incremental progress empowers staff and enhances hotel systems.

In terms of industry trends, Flood pointed out the increasing prevalence of remote work and the growing wellness industry. Hotels need to adapt and become remote working hotspots while capitalizing on wellness opportunities. Personalization and digitalized guest experiences are also becoming expectations.

When asked about glamping sites, Flood explained, "We considered it but decided against it due to the challenging climate in Indonesia." Heavy rainfall for half the year makes glamping operations difficult.

Archipelago International's survival during the pandemic was attributed to their "last man standing" strategy, online sales focus, and expense reduction. They continue to expand internationally and have successfully launched new brands. Their commitment to excellence, flexibility, and embracing diversity sets them apart from competitors. Through continuous improvement and aligning strategy with culture, Archipelago International ensures exceptional guest experiences.

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