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Capella Debuts Two Properties This YearAugust 6, 2007 By: Jennifer Merritt Travel Agent
A seasoned luxury hotelier gives agents something new to sell
Under the leadership of Horst Schulze, Ritz-Carlton set a
new standard in luxury for the hotel industry. Now Schulze is attempting to
revolutionize the standard he set forth with Capella Hotels and Resorts, a
company he founded in 2005, which launched its first property in
today unveils its second, Capella Castlemartyr in
Velden, in the lakeside
May. "It really has exceeded our expectations," says Kit Pappas, vice
president of sales for Capella, who is also a Ritz-Carlton alum. "It's a
fabulous hotel in a great location and people who come and experience it just
love it. The inquiries are starting to build."
So far, about 70 percent of sales have come from travel
agents, Pappas says. "When we look at the level of customers that we have,
a lot of them have longstanding relationships with their agents—they trust what
their agent says," he notes. "We realize how important the agent
community is, so we've brought a number of them on FAM trips to Schloss Velden
so that they can see it, touch it and learn about it." In the coming
months, agents can also look for Capella to launch an agent incentive program,
in addition to the 10 percent commission the hotelier already offers.
Capella Hotels and Resorts are a combination of new builds
and historic elements. Schloss Velden and Castlemartyr both were existing
structures that Capella enhanced by adding additional guest rooms and such,
while properties in Cabo San Lucas,
new builds. In 2008, Capella will also open hotels in Düsseldorf at
Breidenbacher Hof, on
and again in
in Castletownbere. Pappas says the hotelier continues to look at a number of
additional locations, but notes that, "It has to be an excellent facility
in a great destination with a fantastic location and have all the amenities
To set itself apart from the increasingly crowded luxury
hotel market, Pappas says each Capella hotel will offer tours unique to its
region, a perk the company put in place based on customer demand. "Ten or
15 years ago it used to be that if someone was going to a luxury hotel, all
they wanted was a guest room," Pappas says. "Now we're focused on
activities guests want at the hotel that are indigenous to where they are
staying." So at Schloss Velden—
Schnapps is popular—guests can meet with a local distiller and see how they
utilize different fruits to make the liquor. "That's an activity that can
only be found at the hotel," Pappas says.
Capella's Schloss Velden property is said to be a renowned
Carinthian region, as it sits near
residences and all offer views of the surrounding lake, gardens and mountains.
Schloss Velden also has its own beach club and private marina.
Castlemartyr, a restored manor house adjacent to ruins of a
thousands-year-old castle, sits on 220 acres of land in the
It offers 109 rooms, including 85 standard suites, 11 manor suites and one
Presidential Suite. The hotel also features The Knight's Bar, which has a
fireplace, baby grand piano and a restored Rococo ceiling. The
Castlemartyr's fine-dining restaurant, serves cuisine made with locally farmed
For more information on either property, or on Capella
Hotels and Resorts in general, agents can contact Pappas at [email protected].