In a career journey that has taken him from The Taj Mahal Palace to Quest Apartment Hotels, Quest Perth Ascot Franchise Business Owner, Arshan Bhathena, has learned a lot about guest experience, business relationships and hotel management. Here, he shares an insight into his experiences as a franchise business owner and shares advice for budding business owners.

Tell us about your career background in hospitality?   

I have always been passionate about the hospitality industry, having seen my father work in hotels. One of my professional goals from childhood was to open my own hotel and run it as a family business.

To work towards this dream, I pursued a degree in hotel management and started my career at one of the finest hotels in India, The Taj Mahal Palace and Towers as a Management Trainee. During my time with Taj, I managed Board of Director Meets of Fortune 500 companies, Head of state visits and international sporting events and high-profile weddings. During these five years, I amassed a wealth of knowledge and received one of the finest hospitality trainings. To take on a new challenge, I joined the Accor Group in the Sales and Marketing Team for Novotel Mumbai Juhu Beach.

After working for seven years in Mumbai, I decided to explore one of the most stunning destinations and started my next chapter in Perth.

I have completed seven years with the Quest brand and started my journey as the Business Development Manager for Quest Mounts Bay Road and then as the Director of Sales at Quest East Perth.

Why did you think Quest was a good business ownership opportunity?

In December 2015, I applied for a job at Quest Apartments Hotels for the pre-opening team for Quest Mounts Bay Road. It’s there I felt a sense of belonging and realised that my goal to own a hotel can be achieved.

I have worked with the Quest brand since January 2016 and this journey has been a combination of understanding how to run a successful business along with a deep dive in understanding our customers and the importance of building key long term sustainable relationships. During this time, I have grown both professionally and personally and my values have always aligned with the brand values, and I couldn’t be prouder of embarking on this new journey as a business owner with Quest.

Throughout my time with Quest Apartment Hotels, I’ve seen the brand constantly adapt and evolve to meet the needs of an ever-changing market. One of the aspects which I hold close to my heart is our journey of creating the brand belief that everyone deserves a place to be themselves. We go further to create the moments that matter.

How does being a business owner compare to being an employee in the hotel management industry?

It’s week six as a business owner and I can’t express how much this has changed me as a person. As opposed to being an employee, I have the opportunity to work towards building my team, creating my own ethos, and giving back to the local community.  

My business partner and mentor, Michael Bevilaqua has instilled in me the difference between an owner vs an employee mindset and approach. 

What are some of the best aspects of being a Quest business owner?

I guess the most rewarding part of my job is to cultivate a unique culture among the team and develop the next generation of managers and business owners. Being a part of the Quest brand also opens the door to a wider network of business owners who are always available to guide you. You will always have a support system from fellow franchise business owners as well as the Senior Leadership Team.

Another great aspect is the freedom and support for franchise business owners to incorporate and partner with our local culture and communities. A major part of the Quest brand seeks to connect our guests with the hidden treasures of our local communities in ways that are natural and personal to their tastes and preferences—as local as you like it.     

What would be your advice to other hospitality/hotel management professionals who are considering owning their own business?

If you do have the passion to own a hotel and work for one of the best Apart Hotel chains in Australia, you must take a leap of faith and not steer away from your goal.

The systems and processes put together by Quest are geared to set you up for success.

If you are fortunate to become a business owner, you must believe in the value of your offering, the brand and in yourself. This journey will be challenging but rewarding professionally and personally.

Are you an energetic, self-motivated entrepreneur who dreams of owning and running your own hotel? As Australasia’s largest apartment hotel operator, with 35 years of experience and over 160 properties across Australia, New Zealand, the UK and Fiji, Quest Apartment Hotels offers its franchise business owners the opportunity to reap the rewards of a proven franchise model focused on the robust corporate traveller market. If you know you can do it better, take the leap today and experience the pride of owning your very own Quest Apartment Hotel. Learn more here.