Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group, owner and operator of international luxury hotels, resorts and residences, is one of the world’s most celebrated names in the hotel industry. With a multitude of international properties to their name, Mandarin Oriental had chosen Santiago as the site of their expansion in the Latin American region, and 33rd destination in their portfolio.
A highly-consolidated brand with a considered approach to entry in new markets, Mandarin Oriental sought a local agency to create the PR campaign behind their launch in Santiago.
Mandarin Oriental recognized DAf’s expertise with luxury codes and approached the agency to pitch. Successful, we were charged with an exciting project: To develop the PR campaign behind the launch of the new Mandarin Oriental, Santiago.
DAf’s experience in the wine and spirits industry means the agency is very comfortable handling luxury codes. For the launch of Mandarin Oriental, Santiago, our approach was to combine traditional PR tools with the same creativity backed in strategy for which we are known. In this way, as with all our work, we first developed a creative concept to inform each touchpoint; a process a classic PR agency may not necessarily pass through.
Through conversations with Mandarin Oriental, Santiago executives, DAf uncovered key insights relating to the Group’s founding oriental heritage and philosophy of service. Based on these and the overarching pillar of the fan motif which is present at each destination, we proposed the concept “Unfold the fan” to allude to the world of possibilities and details waiting for consumers to experience, create an attitude behind the hotel and serve as a clear call to action to guests and clients.
The building selected by Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group as the site of their new Santiago hotel was an architectural icon, extremely well-recognized for its previous role in the hospitality industry. This history meant that the launch of Mandarin Oriental, Santiago would always, in some sense, refer back to this building in the mind of the public.
For this reason, DAf proposed that communications make this situation transparent, talking of the past and current steps taken to transform this icon into a luxury hotel and equip it with the facilities and details befitting of the Mandarin Oriental brand.
To support this strategy, DAf’s producers and designers collaborated on the creation of a series of events, inviting journalists and influencers to the hotel in order to introduce them to the concept, reveal finished renovations and explain what was to come.
Exclusive iterations of MO Sessions (Mandarin Oriental, Santiago’s pre-weekend after office experience profiling a selection of national and international gin brands, alongside sparkling wine, canapés and beats) were organized for lifestyle and beauty influencers and socialites to attend. In parallel, a Press Event and private tour of the hotel was held for journalists specializing in business, hospitality, food and wine. We also produced the official Ribbon-Cutting event, attended by the greater Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group community and other selected invitees.
Though in operation for several months, MO Sessions required a new look and feel in keeping with the hotel’s official launch as Mandarin Oriental, Santiago. Inspired by the hotel’s oriental heritage and original fan motif, DAf’s designers created a new logo and typography featuring the initials “MO” and alluding to the act of folding.
During the process, the opportunity to develop a below-the-line project arose; something additional and unexpected to offer guests and invite others to visit the hotel. Already in the process of creating a house wine, DAf proposed that this wine become something more strategic: A brand. From there MO was born—the Group’s first signature wine—created in partnership with the enological team at esteemed winery Lapostolle.
The design alludes to an origami folding pattern, referencing the Group’s oriental heritage and representing the creative concept “Unfold the fan.”