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Accor and Wojo open temporary co-working space in Roland-Garros

Paris (75) From May 16-20, the two brands are offering space for companies and their employees, who can work remotely while attending some tennis matches. An original show in a prestigious location was an immediate success. Meeting with Patrick Mendes, Commercial Director of the Accor Group, responsible for sales, marketing, distribution, digital and loyalty activities, and Stephane Bensimon, CEO of Wojo, evaluating the development of co-working at Accor hotels.

Hospitality Catering : How many co-working spaces do you offer during Roland Garros?

Stephanie Bensimon : Originally, 750 remote work places were available, for one day or half days, from May 16-20. It was all sold out in a few hours, so we added another 500, and we also offer meeting spaces that can be privatized for companies, in this somewhat exceptional environment that is Roland-Garros. We knew our bid would be a success but were surprised how quickly places were booked.

Will you continue to develop joint business offers at Accor hotels?

Patrick Mendes We offer two types of spaces in our hotels, venues, spaces open to work for a few hours or for occasional remote work, and nooks, which provide more services, for regular co-working. Today there are 400 in the world; 300 in Europe and a hundred in South America. The idea is to develop these spaces all over the world and in all brands, from economy to luxury.

SBTo achieve this, we want to support managers and teams to work differently, because this is a new type of client, as well as owners, to help them change their hotel if necessary and improve their space occupancy. We are also responding to the strong need for flexibility for companies that can no longer afford office rentals with very long leases.

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What is the benefit of hoteliers in offering this type of space in hotels?

evening: Joint work creates traffic in the enterprise, where previously there were many peak hours. This allows the establishment to live, there is nothing better for a hotel!

SB: We also realized that the fact of incorporating a new offer generated additional interest for employees, who developed their skills and learned a new job. Hotel brands have a very attractive hiring lever, which relies more on personal skills than knowledge.

Where is the recovery at Accor hotels?

evening : There has been a real recovery in activity since March, which has occurred faster than expected, with a change in the type of consumer: we welcome leisure travelers more than business travelers, respectively 60 and 40%, while these proportions were reversed before the health crisis. In addition, we welcome more local and in-region clients, which has greatly compensated for the absence of European clients and far-flung companies.

The other trend, which we anticipated four to five years ago that has accelerated with Covid, is the growth of what we call an increase in hospitality: our hotels are becoming real places to live, open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, where customers benefit from real welcome and safe places, restaurants, bars or Rooftops, gymnasiums and co-working display, with Wojo spaces.

Wojo also offers fifteen co-working sites in France and Spain. What will the next openings be?

SB: We will open our largest space next September, in Ateliers Gait, next to Gare Montparnasse Paris. It will provide 1,500 workstations on an area of ​​13,000 square metres, and will be connected directly to the recently renovated Pullman Montparnasse with which we are working in interaction. It will be a complete ecosystem consisting of a hotel, restaurant, meeting spaces, dining hall, sports halls, etc., near a very busy station. I don’t think it exists anywhere else.

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