Short Biography

Successfully setting up all pre-opening IT systems for Sofitel Dubai the Obelisk, and also managing IT operations for Raffles Dubai, Cluster Director of Technology Stacy Samuel brings over 17 years of extensive professional experience to his role. He acquired levels of expertise in managing projects, pre-openings, infrastructure and network management, as well as technical support for cluster properties. Stacy has been with Accor over 10 years and joined Raffles Dubai in August 2017 from the Al Barsha cluster, where he was in charge of the Novotel, Ibis and pre-opening and running of Adagio Premium properties as a Cluster IT Manager. Prior to this, Stacy held the position of Cluster IT Assistant Manager, overseeing the seven Accor properties under Majid Al Futtaim Hospitality before being promoted as the pre-opening IT Manager for the Novotel & Adagio Al Bustan complex in Abu Dhabi. Before joining Accor, Stacy also worked for Intercontinental in Dubai Festival City 4 Hotel cluster, as well as the pre-opening of Kempinski Mall of the Emirates in the UAE.

How did Oracle’s end-to-end technology solution proposed by ACT supported you in achieving your business goals?

Our business goal was to set up fully integrated Accor approved front end systems which included PMS, POS and procurement systems that would translate into financial operating systems. Sofitel Dubai The Obelisk was actually the first pre-opening hotel in Dubai to sign ACT as the Oracle vendor and it was also the first assisted setup to be provided remotely due to the pandemic. Not only ACT provided us the best solution at a competitive price, the set up was successfully done and the team were on call 24/7 making sure that we achieve a successful hotel opening. All systems were fully functional one month ahead of deadline.

How does ACT’s integrated hardware and network solutions support your business?

Along our journey of partnership, ACT has always been committed to provide us with all the agreed upon scope flawlessly in addition to a professional and responsive after-sales support. ACT’s integrated solutions facilitated our operations efficiency and in turn stretched our trust in ACT.

What was the project’s scope?

The project scope was to make sure we have all front end system PMS (Opera), POS (Simphony) and Procurement (Material Controls) fully integrated with the financial system (Sun systems). We also pro-actively worked on a specific system that will enable Raffles Dubai, sister property within the same complex to be fully integrated in the Sofitel system, in order to create in the future a fully-fledged cluster operational system.

During the current global pandemic, what role do you think technology plays in helping hotels in their recovery?

Technology has always played an important role and now more than ever. Hotels have had to look into providing contactless guest experiences and increasing the digital touch points across the hotel. Furthermore, the pandemic also gave us a new perspective on how we look at technology, as the setup and training sessions during pre-opening which are usually made on site, were all remotely done by the ACT team in Egypt. It was the first time for both vendor and customer to adapt to this reality and we were extremely cautious, paying extra attention to details so that we do not miss a step or configuration which would have been easily spotted if done face to face. We also received fantastic support from the hotel operations teams who actively attended all online trainings and throughout our trial sessions. We as a partner/customer team handled it in the best professional manner and thinking back, we are all extremely pleased with what we achieved with our minimal resources and restrictions we had in place.

How do you find ACT in supporting the hospitality community during this time?
ACT is not a just vendor, they are our technology partner and are always available, they not only achieved deadlines but continuously manage the expectations of all our operations team even after opening. After a successful partnership between Sofitel Dubai the Obelisk and ACT, Accor has recommended ACT for upcoming preopening projects knowing that the new hotels and their teams will be in good hands.