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Cologne, Trankgasse, on the corner of Domplatz – aficionados know that it is exactly here, at the foot of Cologne Cathedral in the heart of the city, that the Excelsior Hotel Ernst has been accommodating discerning guests from around the world for over 150 years. A grand hotel in the city centre: what do event professionals expect when they plan events in these special surroundings? Managing Director Henning Matthiesen provides some insights.
Pro Sky: Mr Matthiesen, your location must surely be the envy of other hoteliers, don’t you think?
Henning Matthiesen: That may well be true. Many guests value the exposed location facing the cathedral, which is a World Heritage Site. As you can imagine, the rooms and suites overlooking the cathedral are very popular, especially among our overseas guests. However, even from a practical viewpoint, our location offers many advantages: the philharmonic orchestra, opera house and countless museums can all be reached on foot. And the trade fair site is also very close by.
Pro Sky: Trade fair is a good keyword: conferences, meetings and events in your building. What infrastructure does the Excelsior Hotel Ernst offer?
Henning Matthiesen: Our guests can choose from twelve modern meeting rooms. For instance, at receptions, the Gobelin Saal, our largest room, offers space for up to 200 guests. Up to 67 persons can be seated in a parliamentary manner.
Pro Sky: The right spaces are an important part of event planning. Are there also further aspects that lie close to your heart?
Henning Matthiesen: Today, time is often the real luxury. This is why we want to manage the time of our guests as efficiently as possible in order to be able to give them precious moments. To guarantee this high standard of service, we intentionally employ 195 members of staff with just 140 rooms and suites. Personal supervision takes central importance at the Excelsior Hotel Ernst. This also applies to events. They are always accompanied by a personal meeting butler.
Pro Sky: And what do you recommend to your guests after the meeting?
Henning Matthiesen: We benefit here from our city location, especially in winter. At the latest when the scent of roasted almonds and mulled wine fills the air again, we herald in the Advent period. A wonderful festive contrast following successful meetings. We are once again represented with our own stand at the market near the cathedral. Underneath the city’s biggest Christmas tree, you can try out the famous Excelsior stollen for yourself.
Besides the stollen, I also have a further culinary tip: our new afternoon tea with creations by French star pâtissier Pierre Hermé. Relaxation and enjoyment at the highest level. Which brings us back to our philosophy about time. After all, even a pleasant break ultimately contributes to the success of a meeting.
Pro Sky: You are a partner to Pro Sky. What is the connection between flights and a stay in your hotel?
Henning Matthiesen: Pro Sky formally extends our service claim concerning arrival and departure. Events find an exclusive and individual setting at the Excelsior Hotel Ernst. But why should the pleasant experience only begin at the hotel? This is where Pro Sky comes in with its Airport [&] Inflight Services. The service extends from lounge access, although economy class was booked, through to a separate check-in desk with a company logo for groups. Travelling thus becomes a pleasant experience and the guests can also enjoy their stay in our hotel even better.
Pro Sky: Mr Matthiesen, thank you very much for these insights.
As a member of the ‘Selektion Deutscher Luxushotels’ (SDL, Selection of German Luxury Hotels), the Excelsior Hotel Ernst works closely with Pro Sky. Would you like to experience the hotel and the meeting destination Cologne with a group? Our experts are happy to provide you with a flight offer. We take even discerning private travellers perfectly to their destination by private jet.