HICSA 2108 concluded recently. Held under the Hotelivate banner for the first time, this edition was geared more towards one-on-one interactions with an eye on more profound insights on subject matters, says Manav Thadani in an interaction. Excerpts from the interview:
Giving an overview of the recently concluded HICSA 2018, held for the first time under the Hotelivate banner, Manav Thadani suggested that there was a “general optimism” in attendees and panellists on growth prospects. “There was a general feeling in the room that room rates were going to go higher, somewhere between 7-12 percent this year,” he said.
When asked whether he reckoned that an upswing in business was around the corner, he asserted that “the market was already in an upswing”. He pointed out that hotel stocks had been performing well and “their valuation in the stock market had gone up in the past few days”, supplementing his argument.
He noted that owners of hotels expressed concern on their ROIs and there was pressure from owners on big brands to “do more”. He also mentioned that domestic leisure markets were doing “very well”, and similar sentiments were echoed during the discussion.
Reflecting on the change in HISCA’s program structure, he noted that “more number of one-on-one interviews” were incorporated in the first-day of the proceedings. “It ensured that very insightful ideas were put forth,”, he explained. Interactions involving Puneet Chatwal, Arnie Sorenson and Patu Keswani were particularly well taken to and attendees were “excited to hear from them”. In terms of numbers, HICSA 2018 registered 460 participants, he shared. “Around 28 percent of them were owners and 30 percent of them were from brands. Importantly, more number of architectural design firms participated because India is increasingly becoming an interesting market for them”, he added.
A few hotels were awarded with the ‘Hotel of the year award’ at HICSA 2018. No Lifetime achievement award was handed out because it was given out every alternate edition, he informed.