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Miguel Afonso dos Santos

General Manager, EPIC SANA Luanda Hotel

Raduan Alexandre Saleme

General Manager, Talatona Shopping

Focusing on providing more than just the standard offerings, these businesses also worked on gaining their customers’ loyalty with greater engagement and a variety of initiatives.
What is your strategy to make EPIC SANA Luanda Hotel the preferred residence for business people in Angola?

MIGUEL AFONSO DOS SANTOS EPIC SANA Luanda opened in 2011, but it was inaugurated in 2012. The hotel was developed with a range of services, that please anyone who visits us from business to leisure guests. We have restaurants of different cuisines including Vitrúvio Italian, Origami Portuguese, and Kimera Asian Fusion, a 2,500-sqm conference space with technology, a fantastic spa and gym, comfortable rooms and apartments, and a Supper Club Switch. However, all these only work if we have a committed team, well trained and with high level of professionalism. We are always trying to go beyond guest expectations and adapt on a daily basis and innovate our product offerings. In these last 10 years, EPIC SANA Luanda has welcomed most of the heads of states that visited Angola, CEOs from international corporations, diplomats, and businesspeople, and we always provide the highest standards possible. In 2022, we were awarded with Super Brand recognition, as well as the World Travel Awards 2020: Africa Leading Business Hotel and Angola Leading Hotel World Luxury Hotel Awards 2020: Luxury City Hotel, Luxury Diplomatic Hotel e Luxury Hotel World MICE Awards 2020: Angola’s Best MICE Hotel.

Talatona Shopping offers many new international brands in the country. What is your strategy to ensure the trust and loyalty of local and international clients?

RADUAN ALEXANDRE SALEME It all started when we saw a deficit in the commercial area in the Talatona region. It is a residential area with not many shopping options, which is how the idea of doing such a project came about. We sought to develop a place where families, friends, or individuals can come, and everything can be found in one place. That year, we made new investments focused on the entertainment area. We plan to attract all national and international visitors, because it is a public spot. Everyone is welcome. We have some international brands that is well-loved by expats and locals alike, as well as other brands that we also intend to push in the future. We have a Japanese restaurant, which is not traditionally found in a shopping center here and is a truly refined dining experience, as well as a pizzeria based on an Italian style. In addition, we continue to offer options that appeal to the public as well.

How do you inspire customer loyalty among your guests?

MAdS Its critical to have a strong and solid team, well trained and motivated, so is important to develop talent and reward. At SANA Hotels, we have SANA Academy that trains our team on a regular basis, both online and locally, in room and on the job, from behavioral to more technical aspects. It is extremely important to train people, so we can have genuine connection with guests; if we understand their needs and we then can go beyond, we can be assured of loyal guests. We have also developed social events to engage with guests and the community and boost creativity. We have developed Art Can Be EPIC, a platform to showcase local artists and promote culture and Angolan talent. We also developed EPIC Talks, whereby we participate on a radio show in partnership with LAC and the oldest radio program in Angola, Bom Dia. We have also created EPIC Networks, where we invite corporate people to mingle, network, and connect at EPIC SANA Luanda, the place to be, where people meet.

The shopping mall has become the hub for different events and activities. What was the intent behind this initiative?

RAS The idea came about in 2021, when the situation was still bleak, and the country’s economy was still affected. We started to draw up our plan for 2022. We have a gym, the only gym inside a shopping center in Angola today. I had the idea to hold other sporting events, such as ESPN, Jiu Jitsu, and boxing for children. We also have an art gallery focused on art, because to us culture is important, and we want to also boost and help Angolan artists. In addition to using it as a gallery for art, we can also rent it out for events. The entire space has a great atmosphere, so we came up with the idea of using it for events, meetings, and business gatherings. In fact, the Talatona administration has already asked to hold a meeting at the gallery and gather all the administrators of residential areas.

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