Mary Nazzal-Batayneh is the Founder and Chairwoman of Landmark Hotels, a Jordanian hospitality company. Born in Beirut and educated in the US, UK, and Jordan, she now combines her business and investment career with her passion for social justice, human rights, and equality.
Mary talked spoke with Forbes Middle East about her ongoing ambitions to modernize the famous Amman hotel she took over from her father and grandfather, efforts to localize her flagship hotel from employees to room decor, how Jordanian culture translates into a superior work environment for staff and a superior experience for guests, and how her company is doing its part to lift up and empower women.
The full article can be read here at Forbes Middle East. Below are some of the most notable quotes from the interview with Mary Nazzal-Batayneh:
On the Landmark Hotels’ ongoing modernization:
The style will be very contemporary and highlight Jordanian photography. We’re a platform for everything Jordanian. We want to tell people, ‘You’re in Jordan, this is what we have to offer, this is the beauty of our country.’
On the impact of taking over the Landmark’s management from an international brand:
In terms of revenue, profit, and guest and staff satisfaction, we’ve improved significantly.
On how Jordanian people and culture make locally owned hospitality brands unique:
Jordanians are very hospitable. When you go to someone’s house, whether they’re a Bedouin or a farmer, from the North to the South, they’ll open their house to you as if it’s your own. That’s the way we want our employees to see the hotel. [The people] are what make the hotel great. They’re the reason people come back. We’re a family, not owners and staff.
Jordan’s former Minister of Environment on Mary Nazzal-Batayneh’s achievements toward sustainability:
She’s transformed the hotel into a successful local brand and put forth a lot of effort towards sustainability – sourcing local products and going almost carbon neutral in the meeting spaces.
On empowering women and ensuring equal pay and treatment:
All over the world you find pay discrepancies between the genders. Here, men and women doing the same work are paid the same. As a company, we’re a microcosm of all the societal issues, be it poverty or empowering women or the marginalisation of a community. We have an obligation and a platform to deal with these issues.
For the complete story with rich social and historical context, be sure to check out the full article at Forbes Middle East.