Devendra Bharma - Batch of 1981
Consumate Hotelier !
Devendra Bharma, (Batch of 1981), is the President of Oberoi Hotels.
Oberoi is a Global Marquee name in hotel industry with 31 Luxury hotels & 2 River Cruise Ships in 6 countries under Oberoi Hotels & Resorts and Trident brands.
He is a man of conviction. Ever since he witnessed the “Fall” of The Oberoi in the calculated terror strikes in Mumbai in November 2008, he zealously restored the hotel to its former glory. “The hotel was destroyed in front of my own eyes. It was an unimaginable loss. Guests, staff…” ; says Debu, as he is fondly referred to by family, friends and staff, and he made it his personal mission to make Oberoi reopen in the shortest time with the same finesse and silent dignity that has been patroned for, by the Indian elite since its inception.
Debu’s initiation and subsequent journey to the top of the Oberoi Hotel chain began in 1984 as a young college student in Delhi who always dreamt of going to the much-accredited institution OCLD. “The hospitality world enamoured me. I was excited about being exposed to a new fantastic world and experience the good things in life. But yes, I didn’t know how much hard work went into this business.Passion and dedication were the two things required of me in the field, and I gave it my all.” Starting off as the assistant manager in the Calcutta Oberoi in 1986, he lived in all four metros: Mumbai, Delhi, Bangalore and Calcutta. The initial part of his career was spent specialising in Food and Beverage, and after 12 years in the field he became General Manager at the Trident Agra and then the flagship / prestigious “The Oberoi, New Delhi”, an iconic hotel of the chain. To become the General Manager of this hotel has undoubtedly been every aspiring hoteliers dream. “I use to always look at the GM wistfully, hoping that I would be in that position one day.” And with sheer hard work and determination, Debu essayed the role of GM of this Oberoi Hotel with an unmatched drive that led to the complete transformation of the property. He aggressively renovated and restructured the food and beverage outlets of the hotel which transformed Delhi’s hotel scene. 360° and Travertino were his two babies that went on to becoming a raging success in the capital and the country. It was also in his tenure that the Kohinoor Suite, one of India’s finest suites was conceptualised and constructed. At this opportune time, he received an offer that was just the cherry on the cake- the Head & Executive Vice President of Oberoi and Trident, Mumbai. He feels that the best part of his job is that every day is a learning process.
Debu, apart from being a mighty hotelier to reckon with, is also a great host with an impeccable charm. A family man through and through, the best way to de stress from his hectic routine is to spend time with his wife and kids, a good workout & weekend golf ( Now rare as he says ! ). He says he looks forward to going back to sailing too.
A complete sports enthusiast Debu used to be a national level swimmer in his younger days.
Cheers to you Debu and fond rememberances of our swimming days.