Debrah Dhugga is managing director of the award-winning Dukes London. Debrah is solely responsible for all operations within the luxury group, including the flagship Dukes London, a five-star hotel in Mayfair, West 14th Beach Club and restaurant on Dubai palm, and the hotly-anticipated international debut property, Dukes Dubai, a new hotel that is due to open its doors in September this year.
With more than 20 years’ experience in the hospitality industry, Debrah has built up her hotel savvy working within some of the UK’s top boutiques, including a stint at Malmaison. From here she moved on to spend four-and-a-half years as CEO of Tom’s Companies, a UK-based boutique group of hotels, restaurant and spa brands.
Prior to joining the 90-bed Dukes London in November 2009, Debrah took a year-long break from the industry and joined GHD in Leeds, as director of retail and spa, before moving to London to make her mark.
Debrah has made a huge impact in the hospitality industry and has taken Dukes London from strength to strength; renovating and establishing a cigar lounge, a Perrier Jouët champagne lounge, new suites designed by Shaun Clarkson and launched restaurant Thirty Six by Nigel Mendham as well as keeping Dukes Bar at the core of the business.
Speaking to Boutique Hotelier in October 2015, she said: “A hotel is bricks and mortar really; it’s 30% of your product and 70% of your delivery.”
Debrah is proud to be heading up Dukes Dubai, which will open in September 2016, securing Dukes as a leading recruiter and allowing Debrah to pass on her passion that working in hospitality can be a dream career, not just a day job.
As one of the very few female managing directors in the hotel world, Debrah is a key role model in the hospitality industry and counts mentoring among one of her most rewarding experiences. She holds a fellowship with the Institute of Hospitality, is a member of the Institute of Directors, advises on the Spa Association Advisory Board, as well as Business Women Leaders.