Vikram Jamwal’s day starts at 5.20am with a session in the gym.
It is here, the General Manager of Hilton Durban Hotel he does his best
thinking and is inspired to tackle the day ahead.
The quietly-spoken husband and father of two, joined Hilton Durban in August 2019, having served as the international hotel chain’s regional director of revenue for Africa and the Indian Ocean, based in Dubai.
Vikram brings to Durban more than 20 years in the hospitality industry during which time he gained valuable experience in Europe, Asia, the Middle East and Africa. In comparison to its international counterparts, Hilton Hotel Durban, he says, is right up there with the best of them.
‘The executive lounge here is one of the best I’ve seen in all the hotels I’ve been to across the globe’
‘South Africa is the ninth country I have worked in and the transition from Dubai to here has been smooth and I am really enjoying being in Durban,’ he said, seated comfortably in the luxurious Executive Lounge of the hotel – one of his favourite places in the hotel and a space where he says he can relax. ‘The executive lounge here is one of the best I’ve seen in all the hotels I’ve been to across the globe,’ he says, proudly pointing out the little putting course outside on the terrace which is a big hit with kids and adults alike! Living in a family apartment in the top floor of the hotel Vikram enjoys the breathtaking views of the city every day and says when he’s not working there’s nothing the family likes more than setting off in the car to explore the city and surrounds.
‘Both my boys love the outdoors and enjoy hiking so we love to head out west to the Krantzkloof Nature Reserve to explore the hiking trails there,’ he said, adding that what made Durban such a great city was that it had so much to offer local and out-of-town visitors and tourists. In discovering all the city has to offer, Vikram said they had come across some ‘positive surprises’ like the Arts Café in Glenwood where he was amazed to see the creativity of local artists on display. ‘We’ve also become regulars at Stokers in Kloof,’ he said, smiling.
While Vikram enjoys getting to know the city and its many facets, its communities and cultures, his real passion lies in the hospitality industry. ‘My family was indirectly linked to tourism which is where my interest in the industry was sparked. I am an interactive General Manager, this industry is all about people and I like to keep my finger on the pulse of what is happening. I enjoy meeting with our hotel guests and together with my team am dedicated to ensuring that we deliver a world class service and our guests enjoy a positive Hilton Hotel experience,’ he said, chuckling that one could say the Hilton was in his DNA!
When asked to describe himself in three words, he doesn’t hesitate.
‘I would say I am creative, I love people and most of all, I am enthusiastic.’
With these traits, Vikram’s vision to make Hilton Durban a lifestyle destination of choice and the headquarters for the many high profile events the city hosts throughout the year is clearly achievable. ‘We are the only five star property in the Durban city centre and can offer everything when it comes to events, business conferences and a luxury holiday destination.
Hilton Hotels globally is a 100 years old this year, so we will be pulling out all the stops to ensure that the Hilton reputation and legacy is celebrated right here at The Hilton Durban throughout the year.’