This week, we had the chance to speak to Mr. Kai Schukowski, General Manager of the Kempinski Hotel Cathedral Square in Vilnius! Like the rest of our articles in our Vilnius interview series, he discusses Vilnius as a destination, how to highten awareness and what makes his hotel so special.
1. What is the greatest plus of Vilnius as a city that international planners need to know about? Give us 3 key reasons why YOU think it is worth it to come here with a group.
Vilnius, the geopgraphic Center of Europe, is probably one of the lesser known and talked about capitals in Europe, yet undeservedly so.
In fact, it is a stunning city and once people get to experience it, they are captivated and are in most cases highly likely to return. I could give you many reasons to come here, but if I had to limit them to three it would be:
1) The UNESCO protected cozy Old Town of Vilnius, which is simply stunning
2) The authenticity of the city, it has very bohemian feel to it
3) Safety is very high and I was personally impressed with the locals’ English skills. You can virtually go anywhere in the city and they will most certainly understand you!
2. What is your personal hotspot in the city? Where do you go on a weekend with your family to enjoy the local spirit?
I am an avid coffee drinker, so I am always on the look out for new spots in town. There are a lot of great little coffee shops waiting to be discovered!
There are also a lot of beautiful parks and lakes within and around Vilnius. Particulary Trakai, with its beautiful castle, is situated 25 min from the city center. The former capital of Lithuania is breathtaking and very busy on weekends, with people swimming in the lakes, eating out or simply enjoying the beautiful green countryside.
Another recommendation would be to see Užupis, a very artsy district within the city and interestingly enough, it even has its own constitution.
3. What is special about the company you work for – where is your strength when it comes to organizing a meeting or incentive?
Kempinski is all about crafting beautiful performances and delivering bespoke events. Ultimately, most hotels can provide great venues and products, but the differentiation comes from the level of care to details and craftsmanship which goes into planning these events with our clients. Throughout every step of the process, we work with sincere care towards the final event and our clients’ satisfaction, rather than just to ‘close the deal’. It’s all about building relationships and trust, which is why we have such a high repeat booking rate.
4. Do you have any new ideas how to market Vilnius in the intl. congress space?
Of course, financially we cannot compete with the likes of Paris, Berlin or London. However, we can focus on using a different and creative approach such as Guerrilla Marketing strategies, which are less cost intensive, yet very memorable.
Also by staying active on social media, especially sharing videos. Vilnius is already heading in the right direction and is obtaining more and more traction and activity on these online channels.
Lastly, connecting Vilnius to a ‘tag-line’, such as Emirates Airlines’ ‘Hello Tomorrow’ or Apple’s ‘Think Different’ could create a strong association and position the city with just a few words.
Your contact in Vilnius:
Head of Vilnius Tourism and Convention Bureau
Go Vilnius | The official international economic
development agency of the City of Vilnius
tel. +370 5 212 1833
Your contact at tmf:
Project Manger Content & PR
+49 931 9002 114