The Show Must Go On
Robb Report Singapore|October 2020
The Show Must Go On
Capella Bangkok is finally set to welcome guests this month. We speak to Nicholas Clayton, CEO of Capella Hotel Group, to find out what it’s like preparing a luxury hotel to open during a pandemic.
Charmaine Tai

What’s life withoutt a hiccup or two? Fighting metaphorical fires and encountering stumbling blocks are part and parcel of life. Nicholas Clayton, CEO of Capella Hotel Group, knows that all too well. If he could have it his way, Capella Bangkok would have opened in the first quarter of the year and he’d have made a few trips back to the US to see his family. But neither happened.

Apart from ensuring new protocols were set in place throughout all properties, Clayton also had to ensure Capella Bangkok was ready to receive domestic guests. Then came retaining his global team and putting them through new training methods in preparation for a world where nobody could predict what would happen next.

But with the lows come equally uplifting highs. Capella has bagged numerous travel awards, including one for its first glamping retreat, Capella Ubud.

It wouldn’t be hyperbole to call this year ‘madness’, but Clayton maintains an optimistic front. And why wouldn’t he? The Maldives, Sydney and Hanoi are just some destinations that will soon be graced with the Capella brand.

Congratulations on the opening of Capella Bangkok. How did plans change with the onset of the virus?

Nicholas Clayton (NC): Prior to COVID-19, Capella Bangkok’s target market was obviously regional and international travellers. Since then, we’ve had to adapt and focus on domestic markets until international flights resume.

That said, many activities and experiences offered remain the same. And it’s only possible because they don’t cater to those visiting Bangkok for the first time. We’re sharing untold stories of the city that even locals would be surprised and excited about.

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October 2020