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Father’s Day Special: Suhail Kannampilly

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Suhail Kannampilly, CEO, The Fern Hotels & Resorts speaks about his dad, Param Kannampilly, CMD, Concept Hospitality, an environment champion and a pioneer of eco sensitive hotels in India

My most precious childhood memories with my father

Around my 18th birthday, we made a trip to Sun City South Africa.  During the trip he took my sister and me to our first casino outing. We got a few interesting life tips, one of them being to walk in with only as much money as you are ready to lose. We were able to just about break even and walk out happy.

What I learned from him as a hotelier

His first advice to me as a hotelier was to always look at a what you are doing from one level above. This helps you truly understand if you are moving in the right direction. The first book he made me read as a hotelier was Peter Principles which outlines the advice and the importance of always learning.

His ability to inspire people is something which I still fall significantly short at, and that’s what sets him apart as an iconic industry figure. Every now and then I have people come up to me with stories of how he changed their lives, got them their first job. He has always looked to help people for no ulterior motives.

Stepping into my father’s shoes one day

I am sure I would never be able to fill his shoes especially since he wears a size 13! But while I know those shoes may not fit, the vision for the company does – keeping the company as a professionally run enterprise, that holds and strive to  strengthen its vision of being a partner of choice,  a hotel of choice and an employer of choice true to its heart.


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