Hospitality Industry World Congress, Barcelona October 2012

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    This was the first Hospitality Industry World Congress, growing out of trends within existing exhibitions held in the FIRA Grand Via exhibition halls in Barcelona. I am invited to many trade shows, and all want HotelDesigns to advertise them to our audience of over 100,000 designer/specifier visitors every month. I am reluctant, and usually say no (although we add the shows to our comprehensive events calendar), and did so here until the organisers asked me to participate and present one of the awards. Acceptance however was last minute, as I drove away to catch the ferry to travel around Germany looking at hotels – another story to come!It is the first time there have been design awards from the HIWC, joining the plethora of awards spreading like measles spots across the global design industry. I am honoured to be asked to be one of the initial presenters, and it also gave me the opportunity to present HotelDesigns to some of the great and the good within the hotel industry. Included on the judging panel, for example, were luminaries such as Didier Boidin from Intercontinental Hotels, Michael Levie one of the founders of Citizen M hotels, and old friend Barbara Delollis of USA Today. Others came from Hilton, Green Hotels, and the UNWTO.

    British representation in the trade show was small. Given that Barcelona itself is adding 500 bedrooms a year to its hotel stock apparently, this is a surprising absence. The show was dominated by Spanish companies and the main sponsor of the awards was Roca, who’s upmarket arm Laufen are represented in our Directory. The awards ceremony was actually held in Roca’s large central Barcelona showroom, which whilst of impressive size, was not nearly as stylish as the Zaha Hadid designed London showroom.

    Daniel Fountain / 20.10.2012

    Editor, Hotel Designs


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