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Questex

Questex extends reach of its Annual Hotel Conference

More than 1,000 hoteliers exchanged ideas and opportunities to shape the future of the hospitality industry at the Annual Hotel Conference (AHC) in Manchester, UK according to organiser Questex.

The conference, held at The Hilton Deansgate, 9-10 October was the largest in the event’s 16-year history.

Adam Reckert, Hilton general manager, said: “We’re thrilled to host the conference once again this year and we’re delighted to learn that 2019 has been the most successful year to date.”

What started as small gathering for 50 local individual and small-chain hotel owners and operators in 2004 has become a major two-day conference that this year featured 14 mainstage sessions and senior leaders from Booking.com, OYO, Starwood Capital, STR, IHG, Marriott International, Deliveroo, Expedia, Accor, UKHospitality, and CBRE Hotels.

The audience also heard from some inspiring independent operators including the The Lowry Hotel, Cringletie House, Tewkesbury Park and Ham Yard Hotel.

The key takeaways from the presentations and debates this year were the climate of uncertainty and subsequent hesitation in transactions throughout the market. In spite of this, 2019 UK hotel transactions, it was revealed, are on course to reach £5.3bn, according to CBRE Hotels. 

Alexi Khajavi (pictured), managing director, EMEA & Chair, Questex Hospitality Group, said: “We’re very proud of what we’ve achieved with The AHC, reaching the 1,000+ delegate mark is less about the number and more about being the UK’s flagship conference for the UK hospitality sector which as we’ve heard and seen is extremely important for the broader UK economy.”

This year’s event drew crowds from 19 different countries and from across the entire industry’s ecosystem, including individual, boutique and consortium hotel owners, operators and managers, developers, investors, bankers, advisors, government agencies and other stakeholders.