In this week's Walpole Power List 2022 interview, we speak to Andrew Coney, General Manager at The Hari hotel in the heart of London's Belgravia - and a man known for his networking genius. Read on to discover what he's most excited about for the coming year...
10th Feb 2022
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What does it mean to you to be named in the Walpole 2022 Power List? An honour to be named in the Walpole 2022 Power List. It has been yet another a hard year for us all, and to be to be selected amongst this illustrious group of people is a testament to the strong team I have around me and all the work we have put in this year. We are all immensely proud.
What have you achieved in the past year that you are most proud of? Hard to pick just one, but I do have to say a particular highlight was winning No.1 Hotel in the UK, No.7 Hotel in Europe and No.21 Hotel in the World in the most recent Tripadvisor Traveller’s Choice Awards 2021. Despite having been closed for four months at the beginning of this year and the various challenges we have all faced in the hospitality sector, at The Hari we were still able to deliver our attentive and personalised service for which we have become renowned. We have also seen our sister property The Hari open in Hong Kong. It's such an exciting time for us as the brand is growing.
What is 2022 set to look like for your business? Sustainability will absolutely be a key focus for us next year. We have recently employed a dedicated Sustainability Executive to bring us forward on our green and CSR initiatives, and we take part in a number of activities with It Must Be Now, a community spearheading sustainable travel. The need for climate conscious businesses has never been more important – we all have to do our part and The Hari will champion many new initiatives.
What are you most looking forward to professionally for 2022? Some very exciting news: we are looking to launch our first ever The Hari Art Prize in 2022. Art has long been in our DNA, with a rolling art programme featured in our lobby and bar areas, as well as limited-edition pieces in our rooms. After the first lockdown we launched an exhibition showcasing only graduate artists. Unfortunately, due to the restrictions in the summer of 2020, these young talents missed out on having their potentially career-launching shows. We wanted to do our part in supporting them and so we offered our sought-after public spaces as an opportunity for 15 London graduates to showcase their work. This was then followed by an Artist in Residence programme, where two emerging artists used our rooms as studio space to create a portfolio of work during the last lockdown, which were then shown at an exhibition in The Hari Bar for six months. We are so keen to continue nurturing young talent, offering them a pedestal for success, and the launch of our first ever The Hari Art Prize is another opportunity for us to do so.
And personally? Like many, my appetite for travel has been stifled for nearly two years and therefore I anticipate holidays, where I can refresh and also learn, will be very much at the forefront of my plans. The bucket list would include Japan, Argentina and my default destination, Tuscany. I'm always eager to pick up on smart ideas and experiences and bring them back to The Hari for our reinterpretation.
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