October - 220 miles to the AHC sadly cut short - RIP Neil Bowler
The Annual Hotel Conference which takes place in Manchester each October is one of the focal points of the Hospitality industry calendar. I was lucky enough to be attending the conference this year as a guest in exchange for riding 220 miles from London over 2 days and arriving in Manchester the evening before the AHC.
We were a group of almost 30 riders from all walks of hospitality industry life riding for the Teenage Cancer Trust amongst other worthwhile charities. It was a ride that would tragically not be completed as sadly one of our numbers would be taken suddenly from us. It has taken me almost 6 months to be able to write about this and it’s part of the reason this blog ground to a halt.
Suffice to say it was a traumatic and deeply upsetting experience for all involved. Our thoughts go out to Neil’s family who I know found some comfort in our attendance at his funeral a couple of weeks later.The AHC being such a large event in the calendar obviously carried on but graciously paid respect to Neil at it’s opening Keynote speech.
I heard several great keynote speeches during the conference one of which was by fellow cyclist Joe Stather from CBRE who gave a slick report on trends within the industry identified from 2018 and predictions for the next year or 2. The ‘B’ word was obviously mentioned several times and now at the time of writing who would have known the mess we would have got into over the subsequent 6 months. For the industry it will no doubt have an effect on their workforce which as you will know uses much EU skills and manpower.
In summary, what I took away from the conference amongst other things of a more sombre nature, was that technology within the hospitality industry is predicted to play an increasing role in further enhancing guest experience both before and during a stay.
I certainly think virtual tours will have a large part to play in keeping occupancy levels high and linking the bricks and mortar of a hotel to its location, something we’ve already been doing at Convirt3D by linking 360 degree views of local points of interest to the fabric of the hotel. Intrigued? Then see last month’s Hotel TIA tour to see how viewers can jump from the hotel to the stadium and back in 1 click.
So as October draws to a close and the nights draw in, let’s hope next year’s AHC will be memorable for all the right reasons and we get to Manchester happy and healthy. Enjoy the time you have with those you love and don't forget to tell them you love them x