Architecture

vogue | vacancies | voice

“Anantara Santorini” UAE

May 16, 2024

The Anantara Santorini Abu Dhabi Retreat

www.gerryoleary.com

Pre-opening hotel photography is one of the fundamental pillars of hospitality marketing. These initial images are the first that potential customers will see of the property, playing a crucial role in their decision-making process. Even if half the hotel is still under construction, my task is to capture its highlights and entice viewers to discover it for themselves. This aspect of hotel marketing cannot be overstated, as these visuals often shape the first impressions and expectations of future guests.

There’s always a palpable buzz around pre-opening shoots. Everyone involved is working diligently towards a common goal – preparing a new luxury property for its grand opening. This collective effort creates an atmosphere of excitement and anticipation. For me, there’s a unique thrill in being behind the scenes and getting a sneak peek at some of the world’s most beautiful resorts before any customers set foot on the premises. It’s a privilege to witness the final touches being applied to create an experience of unparalleled luxury and comfort.

My role in this process is significant. I am responsible for showcasing the hotel through my camera lens and providing the team with images that will be used on their website, brochures, pre-opening materials, and ongoing marketing campaigns. These images are often the first glimpse that people will have of a new property, so they need to capture the essence and allure of the hotel. Effective pre-opening photography can spark interest and desire, encouraging potential guests to choose this new destination for their next stay.

I had the opportunity to photograph a unique Anantara property in the UAE, and it was an unforgettable experience. Having worked on location for Anantara Hotels, Resorts & Spas before, I can honestly say that their properties represent top-tier luxury. When I received a call from Hana Fuchs about a top-secret new hotel in Abu Dhabi, I was delighted to be available for the pre-opening shoot.

The Anantara Santorini Abu Dhabi Retreat is quite unlike any of the brand’s other hotels and resorts in the UAE. In fact, it is unlike anything I’ve seen across the entire country. This beautiful, intimate hideaway features just 22 rooms and is situated halfway between Abu Dhabi and Dubai. Although it’s about an hour from where I live in the UAE, stepping onto the property feels like being transported to the Aegean Sea. The retreat’s whitewashed domes and Greek-inspired architecture are a stunning departure from the typical luxury resorts found in the region.

Capturing the essence of Anantara Santorini Abu Dhabi Retreat was both a challenge and a joy. The architecture and design are so distinctive that it required a thoughtful approach to ensure the photographs conveyed its unique charm and tranquillity. The hotel’s design combines the serene beauty of the Greek islands with the luxury and opulence expected from an Anantara property. Every corner of this retreat tells a story of elegance and relaxation, from the crisp, white buildings to the azure swimming pools that mirror the Aegean Sea.

The pre-opening photography session involved working closely with the hotel’s management and design teams to highlight the features that make this property exceptional. We focused on capturing the stunning architecture, the beautifully designed interiors, and the breath-taking views surrounding the retreat. These images needed to do more than just show what the hotel looks like; they needed to evoke the feeling of being there, of experiencing the tranquillity and luxury first-hand.

The result was a series of photographs that not only showcased the beauty of Anantara Santorini Abu Dhabi Retreat but also communicated its unique identity. These images will serve as a powerful marketing tool, enticing potential guests and giving them a glimpse of the extraordinary experience that awaits them. Through my lens, I was able to capture the spirit of this remarkable property, ensuring that the first impression it makes on the world is nothing short of spectacular.

 

 

 

 

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