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Hospitality events: Examples and companies to keep track of

  Posted in Resources  Last updated 23/02/2024

What is a hospitality event?

A hospitality event is a gathering where business owners, exhibitors, and consultants can come together to network, learn, and build relationships.

Globally, the industry is worth almost $5,000 billion so hospitality events can encompass different kinds of events and attendees, from thought-leadership conferences, to product showcases, to festivals, and more.

For hoteliers, hospitality events will usually be about finding new strategies, products, or partners to grow the success of their business.

This blog will tell you everything you need to know about attending hospitality events as a hotelier.

Table of contents

Why should you attend hospitality events?

Hospitality events can be valuable for accommodation providers to attend for a number of reasons, including:

1. Increasing knowledge and learning new ideas

Attending an event which industry experts are also attending or speaking at is a great opportunity to ensure you can keep up with the latest trends, data, and strategic thinking. 

You can also gain inspiration from speaking with other hoteliers and understanding what they are doing to drive results at their own business.

Usually you’ll have access to workshops, presentations, speaking panels, and even booked appointments to learn something new or dig into particular topics that interest you.

For instance, maybe you were on the fence about investing in new hotel software to run your business. Speaking to vendors, such as SiteMinder, who attend events will allow you to delve deeper into the potential growth your hotel can achieve with technology solutions.

2. Networking and strengthening relationships

Meeting people in person gives you the unique opportunity to have meaningful conversations that are harder to achieve via phone or email. 

Whether it’s with other accommodation providers, software companies, expert consultants, or suppliers, talking together at events can lead to new opportunities for you to maximise performance and revenue at your hotel and the various departments within it.

Staying connected in this way is important because it means you don’t miss out on the latest news and developments, and you are able to feel part of the larger hospitality community.

3. Personal Development

There is always room for personal growth and attending industry events is the perfect place to kickstart it.

With a range of experts converging together, you’ll be sure you see ideas, thought processes, and products that you haven’t come across before which you can use to your own advantage.

You might also encounter workshops that focus on building particular skills, such as leadership, management, or analysis.

It’s also a chance to establish yourself as a strong brand and a voice of credibility within the industry.

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What happens at corporate hospitality events?

Corporate hospitality events may differ in themes and structure depending on their purpose and likely attendees. However, there will usually be some common elements which include:

  • Welcome and registration: Arriving at the event will see you greeted warmly by hosts and guided through the registration/check-in process.
  • Networking: Before and in-between official talks or workshops, there’ll be plenty of time for informal conversations to network and form relationships.
  • Food and beverages: Catering is always a huge part of events, especially in the hospitality industry. This is another chance for informal interactions.
  • Formal proceedings: Depending on the event, there will be time slots and stages dedicated to talks, panels, or workshops that you’ll have the choice of attending. At other events, such as an expo, it might be less structured or include booked appointments with vendors.
  • Entertainment: During breaks there may be entertainment to keep everyone engaged, or post-events parties to keep the networking going.

Overall, the activities at a corporate hospitality event are all designed to encourage collaboration and conversation.

Image representing hospitality events

Hospitality events examples

If you’re interested in the hotel industry’s biggest events, including those that SiteMinder attends, we have a full guide for this year that you can read.

In general, here are a few hospitality events examples that might be of interest to hoteliers:

Hospitality Event 1 – HD Expo and Conference

The largest hospitality design conference in the US which showcases products, services, and latest developments.

Hospitality Event 2 – ExpHotel

Held annually in Cancun, this event focuses on hotels and resorts and showcases all manner of products and services for hotel operations.

Hospitality Event 3 – Fitur International Tourism Fair

Hosted in Madrid, this event is one of the world’s largest annual gatherings for tourism professionals. It’s a great place for brands to promote themselves and highlight new products and services.

Hospitality Event 4 – HX: The Hotel Experience

Perfect for discovering ideas and solutions for improving operations and guest experience at your hotel.

Hospitality Event 5 – NoVacancy

A world-class event for accommodation providers to understand how to tackle modern challenges and learn more about technology solutions.

It’s important to check which events are going to be held in your city in advance, so you can register to attend and organise any appointments that you are interested in – or decide which day to attend if it’s a multi-day event.

All major cities around the world play host to hospitality events held by associations, organisations, tourism boards, and suppliers. No matter where you are or what you want to learn, there will be an event for you.

Hospitality networking events for your hotel

For networking specifically, there are plenty of events in the US and abroad to check out.

Hospitality associations like AHLA (American Hotel & Lodging Association) and AAHOA (Asian American Hotel Owners Association) commonly hold events with educational sessions and networking opportunities. These include awards days, leadership summits, and thought-leadership conferences.

The Hotel Electronic Distribution Association (HEDNA) is another organisation which hosts valuable networking events – particularly the annual HEDNA Conference and Exhibition.

There’s also the annual International Hotel, Motel & Restaurant Show (IHMRS), hosted in New York City, which features hundreds of exhibitors showcasing the latest products and services for the hospitality industry.

Be sure to keep an eye on SiteMinder’s event page to see where you can find us.

By Dean Elphick

Dean is the Senior Content Marketing Specialist of SiteMinder, the leading technology provider delivering hoteliers unbeatable revenue results. Dean has made writing and creating content his passion for the entirety of his professional life, which includes more than six years at SiteMinder. Through content, Dean aims to provide education, inspiration, assistance and value for accommodation businesses looking to improve the way they run their operations achieve their goals.

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