29 Jun We speak to the Trafalgar st james hotel about re-opening plans and hosting events on their fabulous rooftop!
Like so many of you, we absolutely adore a London rooftop bar. There is nothing better than meeting friends or colleagues on a lovely sunny day (or sometimes in the rain) admiring the views of the capital and sipping on something fruity and often too strong! Its just good for the soul!
Although they don’t have a confirmed date just yet, it won’t be long now until The Trafalgar St James Hotel open their doors once again and hopefully, just in time for those warm summer days and evenings.
We caught up with the lovely Sheila Krishnan to talk all things events at this fabulous venue and how they are implementing their new safety measures.
1. Tell us a little bit about yourself, your role at The Trafalgar and how long you have worked for the group?
I’m Sheila Krishnan, the Commercial Director and I’ve been with The Trafalgar St James Hotel for 2.5 years and I’ve been in hospitality for 18 years, working for various portfolio of hotels and brands which includes Hilton, Radisson Blu, Grange Hotels, Accor and IHG.
2. What do you love most about your role?
What I love most about my role is the people. Hospitality is all about the people, you meet people from all over the world and all walks of life. There’s never a dull moment in hospitality, everyday is not the same. There’s always something going on and to look out for, you are not just sitting at your desk. I love the fact that in my role, I can envision new possibilities in driving business for the hotel whilst interacting with people.
3. How many event spaces do you have at The Trafalgar?
We have 3 amazing spaces at The Trafalgar St James – The Rooftop , Rockwell and Biblio. The Rooftop is our crown jewel located on the 7th floor, with immaculate views of the London skyline. Rockwell , launched just a year ago, a plant-filled hideaway to sip on botanical cocktails and escape reality with fantasy and last but not least, Biblio, our house living room comes with ambient lighting and plush furnishings making this space perfect for any soirée.
4. Tell us about the types of events that you host at The Trafalgar?
All of our spaces are perfect to play host to a wide variety of social, as well as corporate events, private dining experiences and weddings. The Rooftop is very popular for Summer Cocktail Receptions and lately is a very popular choice for Weddings as well. Within Rockwell, we held two fashion catwalks last year and of course it is also available for exclusive and semi-exclusive events. All of our spaces are also licenced for civil ceremony’s.
5. Is there a stand out event that you have organised and are really proud of?
We organised our first ever Wedding Show at The Trafalgar St James hotel on 22nd February 2020, in collaboration with Royce Angelo Events and it is was a massive hit and turn out. We planned and produced this event in under 3 months, we had some amazing designers showcasing with us i.e. Sanyukta Shresta, Allison Rodger, A Lover’s Thread, Sartoria Trenti & Emmy London. We as a team from commercial to operations, are so proud and glad that it all came together and the show went well just before the Covid19 spread and lockdown. We also have one lucky couple who have won a Wedding giveaway, worth £10K to spend on food & drinks for their big day at The Rooftop. We are currently helping them plan their beautiful wedding with us for next Summer. Imagine having your wedding at The Rooftop.
6. How have you been spending your time in lockdown?
When I’m not working, I’m exploring my baking & cooking skills. I guess pretty much every other week, I’m attempting to bake or cook something new. Twice a week, I workout at home through virtual gym sessions and trying to keep my immune levels up by eating healthy and exercising outdoors. I’m also learning a new language using the Duolingo app and of course making more time to catch up with family and friends virtually.
7. Your venue is currently closed like the rest of the country and events are on hold, how have you stayed connected to your community, guests and bookers?
Yes, we have. We are keeping in touch with our clients, bookers, guests and team directly through all channels and avenues. We have hosted zoom calls with our teams, keeping in touch with our clients and bookers just as it was pre-covid times and of course as part of Curio Collection by Hilton, we have had a wide range of community engagements.
8. Do you have a date you are planning to re-open at this stage?
We are still awaiting for Government guidelines and directives. Watch the space – as we can’t wait to open the doors of our fabulous hotel and welcome our guests very soon.
9. What plans and safety measures are you putting in place when your doors re-open and you welcome guests and event bookings back to your venues?
We are complying with current government regulations by following social distance measures throughout the hotel. Our staff will be wearing face coverings and screens and hand sanitizer stations will be placed throughout. To ensure we maintain the highest level of cleanliness, we will be using the recently launched Hilton Clean Stay programme focusing on contactless check-in/out, 10 high-touch deep clean areas, room seals and innovative disinfection technologies, more info here https://newsroom.hilton.com/corporate/news/hilton-defining-new-standard-of-cleanliness
10. Are you currently still receiving enquires for late 2020?
Yes we are and this is great! I think everyone is waiting for a reason to get together and celebrate. Let’s hope no lock downs for Christmas. It’s the season to be jolly and merry.
11. Are you venues fully equipped to host virtual and Hybrid events?
At this very moment no, however we do think we do have the opportunity for setting up the production for Hybrid meetings in Biblio, it is just a matter of time and investment.
12. Do you think event bookers will always prefer live events to virtual events or do you think virtual and Hybrid events will become the new norm?
I think event bookers prefer live events as it is more interactive and lively, where we are as individuals are more in tune with all of our five senses. On the contrary, virtual meeting, may require you to stay put in one single position for a length of time, which is not a great thing for someone with a short span of attention and whilst on Hybrid events, I can’t comment yet until I have experienced one.
13. What positive have you taken from lockdown and what advise would you give to other people to stay positive during this time?
I realised during this lockdown, I’ve made time for some of the things that I loved & missed doing and I also learnt each one of us are so creative in many aspects because we have had the “time” to explore and expand our creativity. My advise to others is to be strong, keep active, keep engaged, stay in touch with your family & friends. Start your day early, don’t spend the day sleeping, remember the early bird always catches the worm.
Thank you so much to Sheila for this great interview. We will see you again very soon!
For more information on booking The Trafalgar for your next event, get in touch with Miss London Concierge on firstname.lastname@example.org
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