An innovative new website, myconcierge.com, goes out to market this month following a soft launch pre-summer.
The Dubai-based site bridges the gap between actual and virtual concierge services for those seeking the very best experiences at the most competitive prices. Launched initially for residents and visitors to the UAE, owners of the concept plan to franchise the brand and its technologies to other leading destinations.
“On the one hand we saw a landscape filled with a glut of travel websites, Apps and destination based information online and on the other we saw a clamor of high-end concierge companies offering membership based services. There was nothing in the middle,” said founder, Rob Nicholas.
“A concierge offers three main things to guests – inspiration, information and arrangements. Simply put that is what we deliver with myconcierge. Inspiration is conveyed through beautifully shot video that brings experiences to life before booking. Then, once something is booked and paid for, our concierges take care of the rest,” he added.
The site differentiates between resident and visitor audiences, changing its shop window according to the user’s profile. “Residents and visitors have different needs and interests and we knew that it would be important for each audience to see something directly of interest to them as soon as they arrived on site. This is what we now deliver.
“The UAE is our home base and Dubai is the fastest growing tourism market worldwide; while at the same time, residents here enjoy the highest rate of staycations in the world, comprising up to 10 percent of overall hotel guests. Their leisure time also revolves around five-star properties where the best restaurants and nightlife can be found,” he concluded.
The myconcierge service extends beyond the experiences it showcases online with a back-office headed up by ex-Chief Concierge of Atlantis, Ankur Bagga. “If something is not on the site, it doesn’t mean that we can’t arrange it – we have an 800-CONCIERGE number in the UAE and 24-hour international dial-in, as well as live chat on-site,” said Bagga. “We have relationships with almost every hotel in the UAE and are in direct touch with both mainstream and off-the-beaten track experience providers,” added Bagga.
Nicholas added: “Having concierges on the ground in the cities that we serve is a key part of our service offering – very different to sites that market off-the-shelf experiences in an online supermarket. Even in the short-time that we have been operating we have delivered some amazing bespoke experiences for our members – everything from engagements and wedding arrangements, to week-long specialist itineraries. The site is the hub for everything that we do, but there are also various spokes. For instance, we offer customised solutions for corporate clients who can use our site and services for staff and customer rewards.”
The myconcierge App will be launched in January, 2016 and services will be available in Arabic, Mandarin and Russian by the second quarter of 2016.