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Contents In this issue 8 News & numbers


The headlines and vital stats impacting the industry.


10 Grounds for hope The past year has been hugely challenging for the hospitality industry, with cancelled flights and lockdowns plaguing Europe and the Middle East in particular. Vaccination campaigns, lower case numbers and a series of sporting and political events planned for the near future indicate that there could be sparks of recovery for these regions in 2021. The latest data from STR makes the case for hope.


EHMA 11 Bright future


The European Hotel Managers Association (EHMA) has done its utmost to support hoteliers throughout the difficulties brought on by the pandemic. Now, with vaccination campaigns in full swing and case numbers starting to fall, there is hope that hotels can start to return to normal. EHMA president Ezio A Indiani shares the latest news from the organisation and reflects on what the future might hold for European hotels.


Big interview 12 True to its roots


Since 1956, Meliá Hotels International has grown from a family-led hospitality group into a global enterprise. Will


Hotel Management International / www.hmi-online.com


Moffitt talks to the group’s vice- chairman and CEO, Gabriel Escarrer Jaume, about the unique challenges of the Covid-19 pandemic, the importance of family values and the need for global environmental action.


60 Regional focus


15 African expansion For decades a forgotten corner of global hospitality, Africa has recently come into its own. But with the pandemic exacerbating wobbly infrastructure and substandard healthcare, the industry still has its work cut out. Andrea Valentino chats to figures across sub-Saharan hospitality to learn more about the region’s remarkable boom, the ongoing challenges of coronavirus – and why the longer-term picture is still looking rosy.


Business management & development


18 The path to recovery The past year has been incredibly challenging for global hospitality, but the arrival of vaccines means that hotels are finally starting to think about the future. Andrea Valentino talks to Elie Younes, executive vice- president and chief development officer for EMEA at Radisson Hotel Group, about how his company has fared over the past 12 months, the new brands it has launched – and in


what ways hospitality might change for the better going forward.


20 There's gold in the MUD As the number of mixed-use developments (MUDs) and schemes across the UK and EMEA continues to rise, their combination of residential, retail, leisure and entertainment facilities – as well as co-working spaces and shared amenities – could become a mainstay of the hospitality sector. Jim Banks speaks to Russell Kett, chairman of HVS; Marloes Knippenberg, CEO of Kerten Hospitality; and Dexter Moren, founder of Dexter Moren Associates, about the rise of MUDs and their appeal in a post-Covid world.


Technology 23 Digital drive


The growing need to engage digitally with guests to curb the spread of the virus is changing working patterns and accelerating the digitalisation of revenue management, recruitment and staff interactions. Jim Banks speaks to Arielle Quick, chief continent lodging services officer at Marriott; Carla Milovanov, senior vice-president for global technology and customer services at Accor; and Julia Vander Ploeg, global head of digital and technology at Hyatt, about how technology is reshaping the way hotels operate.


28 The ultimate guest journey Agilysys


31 Limiting touchpoints while keeping the personal touch Angie Hospitality


32 Strengthen your finances Percipient


33 Staying connected in a time of disconnect Ireckonu


34 Every step of the way Covid-19 has highlighted the need for hotels to utilise technology at every stage of the guest journey to provide a safe, comfortable and personalised


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