Hinkley Point go-ahead brings Mandarin to Bristol hotel

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As a result of an increase in visitors from China visiting Bristol, DoubleTree by Hilton has appointed Chun Zeng as a Chinese-speaking front-of-house team member.

Zeng, an intern, joins the Bristol-based hotel in the same week as British Prime Minister Theresa May confirmed that the controversial nuclear power station at nearby Hinkley Point is to go ahead.

The nuclear power station, opposed by many local residents, is part of a joint project between the UK, French energy company EDF and Chinese state nuclear group CGN. At £18bn, China will be funding one-third of the entire development.

The appointment means those travelling from China will be able to stay nearby the site without fear of struggling with language barriers.

Fluent in the Wenzhou province dialect but also proficient in Mandarin, Chun has come from the Netherlands where he is currently studying.

James Headford, HR manager at DoubleTree, said: “As Bristol attracts more and more visitors from China, we believe that having someone who can communicate with our guests in their own language helps cement the relationship and makes their stay much more relaxing.

“The city’s history, shopping, growing business reputation and improved airline links has gained momentum especially with those from the Far East. The Hinkley Point project and Bristol’s proximity to the site has also helped bring in a lot more business people to the city.

“Chun has only been here for a few days but already we’ve learnt that for Chinese people staying in a room with a number four is very unlucky. In the future we’ll now make sure that any Chinese guests are allocated rooms without a number four in it.

Dianne Francombe, CEO of the Bristol & West of England China Bureau added: “Developing relationships with the Chinese community here and abroad takes many years, so it’s great to see that the hard work is now paying off for the benefit of all.”

On his appointment, Chun said: “I’m delighted to be here in Bristol. It’s an exciting, vibrant city and it is obvious to see why more Chinese visitors are deciding to come here. Being able to help them to get the most of their stay will really help place the hotel and city right on the map.”

Martin Fullard

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Martin Fullard

Martin Fullard is the Deputy Editor at Conference News. Formerly a web editor at a national newspaper in the Middle East and motoring journalist.

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